The Book Blogger Inside Tag

This is one of those “free to do” tags that I snagged from The Writing Hufflepuff.  We’ve been having some awesome vent-fests in her comments, and when I saw this, I figured it would give me an excuse to talk (more) about myself.   This is actually a tag from this month.  I’m caught up on all my old ones, but still keeping up with my schedule/to-do list.

Where do you typically write your blog posts?

Right here with my butt on the new sectional.  Before we had the new sectional, I wrote them on the old sectional.  I used to go into the bedroom to do any kind of writing work, but there’s no place to sit comfortably in there unless I set up my table and drag my husband’s gaming chair in.  It’s so much easier to just sit in the front room and pop on some headphones if the hubby is watching/playing something.

How long does it generally take you to write a book review?

It really depends on a number of factors.  If I loved the book and it was an in depth story, it could take me over a month to say everything I need to say.  If it’s a DNF (did not finish), those usually only take me one or two writing sessions to bang out (with the first one being the review set up), since it won’t take me too long to say why I gave up on it.  On average, it probably takes me two or three sessions to write a review, so a week?

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Mystery Blogger Award #4

I am four times more mysterious than I ever could have imagined.  Apparently my mysterious nature is a mystery even to me.

The Mystery Blogger Award was created by Okoto Enigma, and I am delighted and honored to have been nominated for the award by  Dani of Touch My Spine Book Reviews, a wonderful book blogger and an ultimate sweetheart ♥

The Rules:

  • Put the award logo/image on your blog.
  • List the rules.
  • Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well.
  • Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.
  • You have to nominate 10 – 20 people.
  • Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.
  • Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify).
  • Share a link to your best post(s).

Well, we’ve already accomplished the first four items on the list, so I believe we’re doing passably well.

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The Writer’s Tag

In my continuing trek to catch up to all the awards and tags on my list, we come to this Writer’s Tag by The Writing Hufflepuff.  I wasn’t specifically tagged in it, but she was gracious enough to open it to all who desired, so I saved the link and managed to get to it before a year had passed.

What genres, styles, and topics do you write about?

I write dark fantasy and paranormal romance for both original stories and fanfiction as most of you already know.  My prose is as purple as the indigo in a rainbow, but I think much of the critique around that has to do with stylistic choice.  I grew up reading and loving eloquent descriptions, which now form the basis of my own writing.

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Liebster Award #4

I was nominated quite a long time ago by the deliciously dangerous Cupcakes and Machetes.  If you’re looking for awesome recipes, honest and hilarious book reviews, and adorable doggies, there’s no better blog on the internet.

What is the Liebster Award?

“Liebster” is a German word meaning beloved, dearest, sweetheart, or darling.

For bloggers, the Liebster Award is an online recognition given by other bloggers to new bloggers for enjoying or appreciating their work. It highlights up and coming blogs.

Once nominated, a blogger is asked to answer 11 questions provided by the nominating blogger.  They are then expected to nominate 11 other favorite new bloggers and come up with a list of 11 new questions for those nominees.

The Rules

  1. Acknowledge the blog who nominated you and display the award.
  2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger gives you.
  3. Nominate 11 blogs.
  4. Notify those blogs of the nomination.
  5. Give them 11 questions to answer.

1.  Do you consider yourself an artist in any way when it comes to music, arts, crafts, or hobbies?

I guess since I consider myself a writer, I suppose I could be considered an artist.

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10 Things That Make Life Worth Living

Update: I was also tagged in this by Gamers United, so I wanted to include a link to that lovely blog, too 🙂

It’s not a year yet since I was tagged in this by Athena from AmbiGaming, so I…win?  Not that there’s a contest hehe.

Anyway…I believe other bloggers were calling this “10 Things That Make Me Happy” or “10 Happy Thoughts,” but I don’t think that’s appropriate for me.  I’ll try to explain this as best I can, and I hope people won’t see it as something negative or needing pity, but I don’t really do happiness.  Like, I’m not a happy person.   Now granted, if you ever met me (and of course if I never told you this), you wouldn’t suspect it in the least.  I’ve been told I’m very pleasant to be around, which is because I tend to not be social on my bad days. This doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy things in life, nor does it mean I don’t feel things intensely (oh the feels are strong in this one); it’s more like the things I do, I do because they make me feel fulfilled and accomplished like I’m doing something.  I write because if I don’t, I won’t be able to get the stories, essays, metas, analyses, etc. out of my head.  I blog because I have things to say and the internet allows me to have my own place to say them.  It also gives me a medium to display my writing.  I play video games because they make me feel like I’m accomplishing something, and I can write about them.  I read because I love stories (yes, it really does all come back to stories/writing).  I do things that are enjoyable because I’d be less fulfilled and sadder if I didn’t do them, but I can’t say they make me happy, but that’s okay.  I don’t know if this is a common trait of people with depression or if it’s maybe an INFJ thing, but the binary of happy/unhappy is fallacious and harmful.  Here’s the Oatmeal saying it far better than I ever could.

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The End of Hiatus

I have returned, dear friends, though I obviously didn’t physically go anywhere.  No…I just spent the month attempting to write my next novel, but instead of doing NaNo, I did a NoNo (have you missed my puns?) insofar as novel writing was concerned.

NaNoWriMo 2017

I’d planned to physically write 50k words by hand, which is around 1667 words a day, but I didn’t count on arthritis being a greater factor than it was back when I wrote my first novel (by hand).  The pen, which rested right against the joint of my thumb, caused excruciating pain to the digit, and it just became harder and harder to accomplish much at all.  The first day I probably did around 1800 words, which is more than the target, but each day following, I wrote less and less.  I finally decided I’d switch to Word, but then the second problem arose…

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Beauty from Despair: Rejection Projects and Planning Ahead

This post was wholly inspired by Space, Time, and Raspberries, the blog of Sue Ranscht, a lovely weaver of words and other beautiful things.  In the spirit of her post, I want to make something beautiful every time I receive a rejection, so that I can, well…not look forward to it, but at least have a plan of action for when it occurs.

Knowing that something lovely will come out of despair will hopefully help me to move past it and not wind up in the same situation I found myself in almost ten years ago when I gave up on/shelved my paranormal romance novel The Serpent’s Tale.  The veritable decade has given me time to ruminate and realize that I not only should market it as a paranormal romance (I was looking for representation within the dark fantasy subgenre before), but also that I need to heavily edit and refine it before plunging into the deeps again.

Rejection tends to drag me down into the bowels of despair, igniting my depression to dangerous levels.  It was a place I couldn’t stay in and remain healthy.  This also means the project can’t be overly complicated, but it should be something that will hold my attention and concentration.

This is where you come in, because I’m not really sure what I should do!  Since any rejection will be due to writing, it shouldn’t be a writing project.  These are the ideas I’m considering:

  • Origami – I make some sort of folded paper creation.  I’d even be willing to buy a book on this and the proper paper so I can attempt things I’ve never made before.  I used to be quite good at this in my youth, crafting paper cranes and what not.  Sadly, that knowledge has been lost, but it could be found again, and I’d make something different with every rejection.
  • Knitting/Crochet – One of the other.  I don’t know how to do either, so it would be an excuse to learn a new skill.  Again, I’d be more than willing to buy a book.
    • Scarf Making – I could specifically knit or crochet a scarf for every rejection and give them to friends.

What do you lovely people think would be a good “rejection” activity?  What would you do in such a situation?  I’m not overly talented at making things.  I’m reasonably fair with image manipulation (as in I can add words and filters); photoshop isn’t my forte, so any kind of computer project might not be for me.  Let me know what you think in the comments!

Question of the Week: 9/4/16

<–Question of the Week: 8/28/16          Question of the Week: 9/11/16–>

The Question of the Week is posted every Sunday and will consist of a question followed by my answer and explanation to the same.  Some questions will only require a simple answer that could potentially be followed by an explanation.  Many questions will be writer oriented, but not all.  Everyone is encouraged to answer in the comments and discussions/follow up questions are more than welcome!

What’s your writing/editing process?

Note:  I actually recorded this particular post and was going to put the audio file here; however, you need to have either a premium or business style WordPress in order to do such without a third party.  This is not out of the realm of future possibility as I’d love a way to upload audio and video files without being forced to use a site like YouTube if I don’t want/have to.

I was having a discussion with the lovely LightningNightNova about this in a comment thread and thought it would make an excellent QOTW.

So with hand written stories I’ll write my bit for the day then the next day, I read through what I wrote prior to put myself back in the mien of the story before continuing on, making minor edits on the page as I go.  When it’s time to put the story into Word, I do the exact same thing.  As I type it up, I’ll do some editing, additions, and any necessary deletions as I go along using the hand written copy as a base.  The next session, I read back through what’s been typed up prior, making more edits as necessary before continuing the thread of the story.  Once everything is in Word I go back to the beginning of the work and do a full and comprehensive edit.  This process may happen quite a few times even though by the time I get to that point, the story has been edited quite a bit.

The Serpent’s Tale was written with such a method.  The last two stories, Northern Lights and The Broken Rose were written entirely on Word with no physical writing done at all.  While these were fanfictions, that has no bearing on the method.  I decided to try it with NL, and mistakenly thought that TBR would be a short tale instead of the longest I’d ever drafted.  My short story Threads of Sorrow was written entirely on Word, too.  That method is similar to the handwritten one; it’s just missing that step.  Using notes and outlines I write up to a certain point on Word, and the next day read through the prior writing before continuing.  When the story’s completed I do the comprehensive edit (which is going on right now with TBR), with any additions, changes, and deletions happening during that time (I’m currently working on one of those additions right now as I’m drafting an additional early chapter).

While you’d think cutting out the hand writing would make story drafting faster, it actually doesn’t.  The Serpent’s Tale took me two years to write and edit the first time (it needs to be edited again, but that’s another story…) and so did Northern Lights.  I was over a year in the writing on The Broken Rose (understandably since it was approximately 250k words), and it will probably take me more than that to fully edit it.

I much prefer the handwritten method (which I discuss more here), because I like having that physical base/foundation to fall back to in case something happens.  I have lost work before.on TST and others that unfortunately weren’t handwritten, stories I’ll never get back.  Plus I always have this persistent fear that I’ll sit down to write and nothing will come. This worry is far more profound when I’m in front of a computer screen than when I see a blank journal page.  The latter seems more of an invitation to write.  I intend to draft my next story by hand, and there’s actually some evidence to support this method.  I’m not the only one who’d noticed it’s not a detriment to time, and it has some other advantages, as well.

For essays and articles those are all written on Word or directly on WordPress with the help of notes.  I’m okay writing shorter things without the benefit of a physical copy, but for longer stories, I prefer handwritten.

I probably edit everything I write at least five times before I’ll ever allow anyone else to see it.  It’s a pride thing for me I guess, because I always want to present my best face, and I absolutely abhor finding a silly error in something I’ve edited numerous times.

What’s your writing/editing method?  Do you hand write first?  Do you do small edits as you go along or save them until you’ve finished drafting the entire work?

I look forward to your answers in the comments!

<–Question of the Week: 8/28/16          Question of the Week: 9/11/16–>

Question of the Week: 4/3/16

<–Question of the Week: 3/27/16          Question of the Week: 4/10/16–>

The Question of the Week is posted every Sunday and will consist of a question followed by my answer and explanation to the same.  Some questions will only require a simple answer that could potentially be followed by an explanation.  Many questions will be writer oriented, but not all.  Everyone is encouraged to answer in the comments and discussions/follow up questions are more than welcome!

How long does it take you to finish and edit a novel?  What is your average word count?

Finishing a novel from start to finish is usually a two year job.  This also includes a fairly thorough edit as I do it as I go along (maybe I’ll post a question asking about writing process, and if so I’ll explain mine).  Since my original novel still remains unpublished I have more editing to do on that though.  Hoping to get to that before the end of this year.

Northern Lights followed the two year pattern and The Broken Rose is coming up on a year and I’m hoping it will only take a few months to edit.  Fanfiction is a bit different though since there are no gatekeepers per se for that.

I have never written a novel that’s been less than 100k words.  The average is around 150k.

How long does it normally take you to finish a novel?  Does that include editing?  What’s your average word count?

I look forward to your answers in the comments!

<–Question of the Week: 3/27/16          Question of the Week: 4/10/16–>

A Brief Update

I’m still spinning the yarn and winding the threads. I’ve thrown myself wholeheartedly into The Broken Rose in a desperate attempt to finish it before month’s end. I am at a critical part that is leaving me very drained. It’s extremely intense and lush with violence but I’m trying to sew beauty in. 

Once the story’s complete I’ll be back in force with more essays, metas, and more. Once edited, Rose will also be posted with every warning under the sun. This is the reason I never fault authors for taking what many think is too long of a time.