WritingWednesdays! My ‘Hump Day’ Writing Update :)

WritingWednesdays

#WritingWednesdays is a weekly blog hop/meme where we writers tell the world how all the writerly things are going. It’s a way for us to self-motivate and cheer each other on. This week I managed to post on Wednesday *self-five* so here we go…

Here’s what’s been happening this week for me:

1. Last week I mentioned a certain new character had emerged. Well Lord Awfully-Awesome wanted to be the star villain of the story so I had to go back and figure out how to make that happen from the very beginning without undermining the rest of the story.

2. To that end, I created a beat sheet of all my current scenes and then went back and filled in how I could change things to incorporate Sir Badass. Wonder of wonders! A brand-spanking-new outline emerged that required reworking of chapters rather than total rewriting! It was very exciting!

3. I’ve started reworking all the words from chapter 1. Things are going well. I lost 1000 words yesterday in the process though. I was all set to hit my 68k goal for the week when suddenly, edits. So…

4. I didn’t hit 68k (I’m sitting on 67k exactly) but the WIP is much shinier for it and I’m super excited about this story and even more excited about this antagonist!

That’s it for this week. Goal for next week is to keep writing words and to get through as many of these chapters as possible. Ideally, I’d like to hit 70k but reworking takes a lot of time and often results in more words being cut than written at this stage.

How has your writerly week been going?

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It’s release day for B is for Broken!

BisforBroken_Cover

Broken people, broken promises, broken dreams and broken objects are just some of the ways these 26 fantastic stories interpret the theme of ‘Broken’. From science fiction to fantasy, horror to superheroes the stories within these pages cover a vast swath of the genres under the speculative fiction umbrella.

Featuring all new original fiction by:

~ Brittany Warman ~ Milo James Fowler ~ C.S. MacCath ~ Sara Cleto ~ Samantha Kymmell-Harvey ~ Megan Arkenberg ~ Gary B. Phillips ~ Alexandra Seidel ~ Jonathan C. Parrish ~ Simon Kewin ~ Beth Cato ~ Cory Cone ~ Cindy James ~ Alexis A. Hunter ~ Michael M. Jones ~ Steve Bornstein ~ BD Wilson ~ Michael Kellar ~ Damien Angelica Walters ~ Marge Simon ~ Michael Fosburg ~ Suzanne van Rooyen ~ L.S. Johnson ~ Pete Aldin ~ Gabrielle Harbowy ~ Lilah Wild ~ KV Taylor ~

Goodreads

Amazon    Kobo     Smashwords

Praise for B is for Broken:

This collection is a massive and magnificent assortment of truly enjoyable stories. There is simply no way to read this book and not find a story you can connect with or love. This is the book to have in your travel bag. In it you are sure to find a tale to fit any mood. Each time you open it, a new adventure begins.”

~ Anita Allen, Assistant Publisher/Editor, Mythic Delirium Books

And here’s an excerpt from my story, U is for … :

Satisfied she was alone, Victoria laid the leg beside the shrouded body on her exam table. Gently, she peeled away the sheet, revealing his exquisite face. She never got tired of looking at him. She brushed soft black hair from the android’s face before placing a tender kiss on each sleeping eyelid. His long lashes tickled her lips and turned the desire aching in her bones into a hungry, fanged creature chewing on her insides. The lashes swept indigo shadows beneath the eyes, shadows she trailed with an index finger to his full lips, rosebud pink, replete with delicate grooves carved into cupid bows.

He was almost done.

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#WritingWednesdays even though it’s Thursday

WritingWednesdays

#WritingWednesdays is a weekly blog hop/meme where we writers tell the world how all the writerly things are going. It’s a way for us to self-motivate and cheer each other on, even when we didn’t quite make the ‘Wednesday’ part of the hop. Please forgive my tardiness.

Here’s what’s been happening this week for me:

1. Lots of thinking about and working on the WIP. I completed my read through and realized I’d run out of words to edit, which meant creating new words and fresh scenes, which is as exciting as it is terrifying.

2. I was feeling pumped for the last 10k or so of this novel because I had the ending all figured out. But in chapter 29 of a proposed 35, a new character emerged. He’s awesome in every way and I love him, except his existence has completely derailed my plan for the end of this novel!

3. I’ve stalled around chapter 30 trying to figure out a new ending and how to work this character into earlier chapter so his sudden appearance is at least foreshadowed because he’s important and did I mention awesome!?

4. At very least I hit my 65k target and am in fact sitting just under 66k – booyah!

That’s it for this week. Goal for next Wednesday is to figure out a new ending and hit 68k. The SNI is officially on hold until I can get the ending of this WIP figured out again.

How has your writerly week been going?

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#WritingWednesdays

WritingWednesdays

#WritingWednesdays is a weekly blog hop/meme where we writers tell the world how all the writerly things are going. It’s a way for us to self-motivate and cheer each other on.

Here’s what’s been happening this week for me:

1. The WIP is sort of back on track. I’d kinda lost interest and enthusiasm for this work so I started rereading from the beginning and discovered it wasn’t nearly as awful as I imagined. So, having renewed my love this for YA fantasy involving African gods and monsters, I am now at 63k words with my eye firmly set on the end, a mere 10k words or so away.

2. As usual whenever I head into the last part of a draft, I have been besieged by Shiny New Ideas and the voices won’t shut up so now I’m outlining an SNI while drafting the WIP. My brain hurts. At least they’re very different novels.

And that’s pretty much where I am this week. Goal for next Wednesday is to finish the read through of the WIP, fix what I know is broken and make it to 65k at least. I may also start penning some scenes for the SNI just to get to know my characters.

How has your writerly week been going?

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Megan O’Russell’s The Tethering and The Siren’s Realm

Megan O’Russell is thrilled to have her premier novel The Tethering published with Silence in the Library Publishing. Book two in The Tethering series, The Siren’s Realm, is currently available for pre-order. Megan’s work can also be found the anthology Athena’s Daughter’s 2.

Originally from New York, Megan is a professional actress who spends her time traveling the country for different shows. When not on stage or writing, Megan spends time with her beloved ukulele and her wonderful husband. To follow Megan’s writing adventures, you can

Visit Megan online…
Website | Twitter | Facebook | TSU 

And add the book on Goodreads

TheTethering Book Cover

All sixteen-year-old Jacob Evans wants is to win the heart of Emilia Gray, but with order in the magical world crumbling, war threatening, and Emilia’s boyfriend living across the hall, he may never have the chance.

Jacob Evans loses everything he has ever known and is tossed into a world of magic. The Dragons, a group of rebel wizards, are threatening to expose the existence of magic to humans. Jacob is determined to find a way to fit into Emilia’s family, but as his powers grow, so does the danger. With the death toll mounting, Jacob is accused of acts of rebel terrorism and must fight to stay in a world he’s only just beginning to discover.

When Emilia’s life is threatened, Jacob must risk everything to save her. Does he have the power to rescue her in time? And what could their survival cost?

Amazon | B&N | SintL

TSR_ebook

Jacob loves Emilia Gray, but things aren’t always that simple in the world of Magickind…

The war has begun.

The Dragons are gaining power, and the Gray Clan stands alone. Desperate to find a way to stop the Pendragon, Emilia is forced to seek answers from someone who hasn’t been seen in seventeen years . . . Her mother. Embarking on a magical journey filled with witches, wizards, centaurs and a dangerous and powerful Siren, Jacob and Emilia must take a leap of faith to a land neither could have ever imagined . . . and hope they can then find their way home.

AmazonSitL

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Epic Worlds Writing Competition

Take us to an exciting new place in Inkitt’s new Writing Competition – Epic
Worlds: A New Adventure!

What is Inkitt?

Inkitt is a free writing platform where authors can get creative and watch their
stories grow, and they’re opening a new writing contest for entries this spring.
Inkitt is a place for writers and readers to collaborate, trade feedback and ideas
to improve their work. In the long run, Inkitt’s goal is to help writers get the
exposure they deserve and the publishing deals they want without worrying
about the impediments and unfairness of traditional printing and self-publishing.

epicworlds
Writing Contest: Epic Worlds – A New Adventure

This month Inkitt’s writing contest is “Epic Worlds: A New Adventure”. Take
millions of readers on an epic journey with your best fantasy stories. Submit
ancient tales about dragons and griffins, or tell your vision of the future through
a science fantasy story. Unleash your imagination and show what you’ve got and
write a truly unforgettable fantasy adventure. Write an adventure that Bilbo
Baggins would envy, one that enchants and excites, astounds and has everyone
on the edge of their seats.

The contest will begin on May 6th and will close on June 3nd. It is free to enter and
you can submit any fantasy story of up to 15,000 words. As per usual, authors
will retain all rights to any work they submit.

How to win? Collect the most community votes to get bumped into the top 10%
of entries, from there the Inkitt staff will choose the top 3!

Prizes:

1st place: $100 Cash and 5 printed-and-bound copies of story with cover created
by Inkitt’s designer

2nd place: $50 Cash

3rd place: $30 Cash

Get in on the adventure! Enter the competition now and prepare to enter a world
of fantastic fantasy where anything is possible!

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All the Awesome! ALL OF IT!!

So I’ve been sitting on this news for nearly two weeks and it has been killing me not to be able to tell anyone! Finally, I can share the news and it’s pretty awesome!

I’ve signed another book deal! Here’s the official announcement…

Suzanne van Rooyen’s SCARDUST, in which an ex-juvenile delinquent’s dream of being an astronaut gets derailed when he finds a beat-up amnesiac in the Texas desert, and is forced to confront a painful truth that could shatter both his dream of Mars and his heart, to Stacy Cantor Abrams at Entangled Embrace, by Jordy Albert of the Booker Albert Agency.

Now let me tell you why this book is so special and why I’m even more thrilled than usual to have found this story an amazing home with Entangled.

More than two years ago – before I Heart Robot, heck before The Other Me – I started writing a new adult science fiction novel about a guy called Raleigh who was all kinds of messed up but beautiful and tragic and destined for awesomeness if I could just figure out how. I wrote and rewrote this book trying to tease out the story Raleigh was trying to tell. Nothing worked.

I abandoned this book several times to work on other things like The Other Me, I Heart Robot and more. The story languished on my hard drive but was always at the back of my mind. It was only after I’d finished edits on I Heart Robot that I dusted off the word document and got stuck in one final time. I promised myself that this would be the last attempt and if it failed, I’d shift+delete and move on for real even if it broke my heart to give up on this story.

After a few more months of struggling with this book, I realized what the problem was. Raleigh’s story was one I was afraid to write and had been trying to avoid while drafting. Despite the fear, I decided that if Raleigh’s story was worth telling it was worth telling properly, fully, and I couldn’t avoid the truth of it. So I sucked it up and wrote words that scared and hurt me, but they were good words and in a span of a few weeks I’d managed to do what I had failed to do in almost 2 years of working on this novel. I finished the book.

I cannot thank my rockstar agent, Jordy Albert, enough for believing in this story, for loving Raleigh, and for finding Scardust a good home. I cannot wait to get stuck into edits and share Raleigh’s story with you – that’ll happen sometime next year I believe. For now, you can check out the Pinterest board for Scardust and scroll back up to ogle Tom Hiddleston some more 😉

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WIPmarathon Check-in No. 15

Geez, where did April go? This month evaporated on me. With the release of I Heart Robot on March 31st, April was pretty busy with promo and blog tours and things. I did get some down time from the day job though, and managed to get a fair bit of writing done…

Last report WC for YA fantasy: 41, 700

Current report WC for YA fantasy: 58, 000 – My goal for the month was 60k and since I still have a few more days until the end of the month, I think I’ll achieve my goal :)

Writing Issues This Month:

I hit a brick wall. I had a great outline up until a certain point. Then I reached that point and stared blankly at the screen. I’ve been doing this for about a week now and have only just managed to plot out the rest of the book – YAY!! – but haven’t had time to actually write any of it yet. Tuesday is my writing day though, so that is when all the words will happen.

Five things I learned this month:

1. Knowing how a book will end – even in vague terms – is immensely helpful. I didn’t have a clue how this story would end right up until the end of the second Act. Big mistake. You’d think I would’ve learned this by now, but apparently not. Next time, I’m not going to set words to document until I know how the book will end.

2. It’s okay to get stuck at a certain point and take a break from the manuscript. The minute I stopped stressing and fretting about not knowing what to write next was the moment the rest of the story came to me. Sometimes taking a step back is all that’s needed.

3. Shiny New Ideas are awesome, but a real pain in the posterior too. They attack when they’re least expected or wanted.

4. Sometimes having the time to write results in zero productivity. When I only have an hour or two to write is when all the words get written. I don’t know how to remedy this situation, but at least I’m aware of the problem. Any tips?

What distracted me this month while writing:

All the things for I Heart Robot! Again! More happy distractions. Also, another big awesome thing happened which I can’t talk about yet, but am hoping to sound the trumpets about very very soon :) :) :)

Goal for next month:

Hit 70k on the WIP and tidy up the synopsis for my agent. I’m keeping my goals relatively small and realistic since May is the end of the academic year and I know I am going to have tons of marking, grading, and other school stuff to attend to this month.

Last 200 words: Again, too many spoilers, but I’ll introduce you to my other POV character, Nameya.

“You must bleed, child.” Grandmother’s words wheezed through her granadilla peel lips.

The knife glinted in the flickering candle light and bit deep into Nameya’s palm. Blood oozed through clenched fingers, spattering the iridescent abalone shell with scarlet. The sangoma chanted and Nameya winced, squeezing tighter until blood ceased to flow. Lightning slashed across the pre-dawn horizon; thunder juddered the earth and shifted the dune sand beneath the stilt-legs of the hut. Nameya swallowed down a bitter rush of fear.

“It is done.” She patted Nameya’s shoulder and handed over a strip of clean leather. Wound bound, they waited for the storm to abate.

“How long?” Nameya’s impatience was palpable.

“In his own time, Meya. Impundulu will not be hurried.” Grandmother shuffled her heavy body from the floor and back into her hummock. The sea-salvage tinkled in her dreadlocks, the bright bits of glass and water-smoothed pebbles standing out in stark contrast against her hair the color of sun-bleached bone.

“Will it be enough, Gogo?” Nameya opened the door and peered warily into the rain.

“Your blood is strong.” Grandmother sighed and settled into gentle snores.

“But is it strong enough?” Nameya whispered, remaining on the threshold and trying hard not to doubt the sangoma’s words.

That’s it for April, how did you do?

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Blog Blitz: Suspected by Rori Shay

Suspected banner
This is my stop during the book blitz for Suspected (#2) by Rori Shay. This book blitz is organized by Lola’s Blog Tours. The book blitz runs from 20 April till 3 May, you can view the complete blitz schedule on the website of Lola’s Blog Tours.

So far this series contains 2 books: Elected (The Elected series #1) and Suspected (The Elected series #2). The Elected series is about the environment and environmental change and what can happen after climate change. It’s about a girl pretending to be a boy for the good of her country. Fans of Mulan will love this series.

SuspectedSuspected (The Elected series #2)
By Rori Shay

Genre: Dystopia
Age category: Young Adult

Blurb:
East Country upheld the laws. Mid destroyed them.

In the year 2185 Earth is rebuilding after a global eco-crisis. Countries maintain complete isolation so there is no warfare over scarce resources. One Elected family is chosen to lead each country for 100 years to ensure stability. Women aren’t allowed to take office and must reproduce at all costs. Technology use of any kind is banned to preserve what’s left of the environment.

And yet, I’m my country’s Elected. I’ve just sanctioned technology use to ready us for war. I’m about to cross the border to spy on our neighbor. And…I’m a girl. Shhhhhh…..

You can find Suspected on Goodreads

You can buy Suspected here:
Amazon

First book in the series:
ElectedElected (The Elected series #1)
By Rori Shay
Genre: Dystopia
Age category: Young Adult
Release Date: April 8, 2014

Blurb:
It’s the year 2185, and in two weeks, Aloy will turn eighteen and take her father’s place as president of the country. But to do so, she must masquerade as a boy to avoid violating the Eco-Accords, four treaties designed to bring the world back from the brink of environmental extinction. Aloy hopes to govern like her father, but she is inheriting a different country. The long concealed Technology Faction is stepping out of the shadows, and as turmoil grows within her country, cryptic threats also arrive from beyond their borders.

As she struggles to lead, Aloy maintains her cover by marrying a woman, meanwhile battling feelings for the boy who knows her secret—the boy who is somehow connected to her country’s recent upheaval. When assassination attempts add to the turmoil, Aloy doesn’t know whom to trust. She understood leadership required sacrifice. She just didn’t realize the sacrifice might be her life.

You can find Elected on Goodreads

You can buy Elected here:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Kobo

Rori ShayAbout the Author:
Rori Shay is a strategic management consultant living in the Seattle area with her family, black lab, and cat. In the writing world, Rori is primarily know for her science fiction trilogy, The Elected Series. She enjoys running, reading, snow-shoeing, pumpkin-picking, and right now…writing the third ELECTED novel! Rori is also a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI).

You can find and contact Rori here:
Website
Facebook
Twitter
Goodreads

There is a tour wide giveaway for the book blitz of Suspected. This giveaway is US and Canada only. These are the prizes you can win:
– a kindle ereader and a signed copy of Elected by Rori Shay

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Lola's Blog Tours

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April is National Poetry Month

Plumier I’m a little behind, but I couldn’t let April go by without mentioning that April is the national month of poetry. Now, I don’t write much poetry any more. As a teen, it was my go-to medium for expressing all my angst, but I haven’t written much poetry since then.

I’m still a huge fan of poetry though and poetry has inspired my own writing in several ways. One of my favorite poets is Charles Baudelaire, who penned the deliciously dark collection called Fleurs du Mal, or Flowers of Evil. For ages I’ve been wanting to write something connected to or somehow inspired by Baudelaire’s words and then it happened.

While I was writing I Heart Robot, Baudelaire’s words kept flashing through my mind during various scenes, so I decided to make it a thing and give those words to my android Quinn. Considering Quinn admires and envies the humans, and wants so desperately to prove himself capable of human emotion, I thought having my android being able to quote poetry would only add to Quinn’s perception of emotion and human condition. While Quinn quotes an older translation in the book, here’s my favourite translation of my favourite poem by Baudelaire… for those who don’t know, Baudelaire’s poetry is particularly dark, but also beautiful.

The Fountain of Blood

It seems to me sometimes my blood is bubbling out
As fountains do, in rhythmic sobs; I feel it spout
And lapse; I hear it plainly; it makes a murmuring sound;
But from what wound it wells, so far I have not found.

As blood runs in the lists, round tumbled armored bones,
It soaks the city, islanding the paving-stones;
Everything thirsty leans to lap it, with stretched head;
Trees suck it up; it stains their trunks and branches red.

I turn to wine for respite, I drink, and I drink deep;
(Just for one day, one day, neither to see nor hear!)
Wine only renders sharper the frantic eye and ear.

In terror I cry to love, “Oh, put my mind to sleep!”
But love for me is only a mattress where I shrink
On needles, and my blood is given to whores to drink.

Who is your favourite poet? What’s your favourite poem?

Quiz courtesy of Grammarly.

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