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Weekly Update 07/30/14

  • Posted on July 30, 2014 at 1:05 am

Another Weekly update! This one is a little delayed, but I tried to get it to you guys as soon as possible. After all, Accountability is what it’s all about!

WORD COUNTS

Kurylian Saga:  The Sorcerer and The Swordsman – Edit one – five pages

Kurylian Saga: The Prince and The Corpse – Rough Draft – WC: 1,348

Kaimi Rowe Series: Seeker Born – Rough Draft – WC: 15,269

BLOG POSTS

Ascended Gods – a question of morals

WEEKLY WORD COUNT GOALS

Last week’s Progress: 1,348/2500

This week’s goals: 2500 words

Ascended Gods – A question of morals

  • Posted on July 26, 2014 at 12:05 am

Tonight I went to see a summer hit, Lucy. To summarize, it is a movie about a woman, who, through a bad drug-ring run-in, ends up able to open up her very brain, and strive past the normal ten percent that most humans can access it. The movie is entirely about her journey from ten to one hundred percent, and what happens at the end.

Lucy Trailer

Now this is not the first story of a human pushing past humanities limits. In fact, there was another such being in media, one Dr. Manhattan. Through a freak science incident, this particular case ended up becoming almost godlike, capable of manipulating not just matter, but time and space as well.

But both of these two have something in common.

Both lose touch with their humanity, over a period of time. At one point, Dr. Manhattan, instead of exercising his gifts to save a woman, ends up allowing her to be shot. Lucy, despite her gifts, and apparent omniscience at the end of the movie, chooses to give mankind knowledge, but no guidance. Both of them, in the end, ascend beyond humanity, and choose not to interfere any further.

Why is this? What is it about these ascended gods that marks them as amoral, beyond the human concept, beyond understanding humanity, despite knowing, and having control over just about everything? Why do these so called gods choose instead to give humanity knowledge, and no true guidance? What is it about this ascension that takes them beyond any and all morals or codes that they held during humanity?

I beleive these characters are designed this way to invoke exactly that. A Godhood, an ascension. The belief that all humankind’s worries and needs are inconsequential in the larger run of things. However, I ask you, why would the belief, the realization of this, make these beings choose instead to fuck off into the deep blue mysterious beyond?

Why instead, do they not choose to stay? To attempt to guide humanity towards some kind of peace? If they have an absolute understanding of everything trivial and horrid that humanity has done, and how to correct it… Why don’t they? Are we to believe that once someone has ascended beyond all the worry, all the strife, all the day-to-day rat-races, that they would just… forget or ignore or lose interest in all of those they once cared about?

Dr. Manhattan’s transformation was quite well done, over a period of many, many years, and to be honest, I understand why he began to lose touch. He became entrenched instead on all of the mysteries the world had now unlocked for him. As he said, “I am tired of this world, these people. I am tired of being caught in the tangle of their lives.”

I’m curious, dear readers, has there ever been a case of one of these ascended gods choosing instead, to guide humanity? Successfully? Please tell me in the comments about it, about what you think would happen, and about what you think humanity’s response would be.

New: Weekly Updates!

  • Posted on July 23, 2014 at 5:17 pm

As a dedication to my new career (upcoming) as an author, I’ve decided to do something I’ve seen some of my very favorite fanfiction authors do. It’s a little unorthodox, but at this point, I think that strange might just work for me. Also, it’s a little motivating to have to answer to all of you for a lack of growth in my word counts. Or, at least, I hope it will be!

Thanks to CelynBrum for this idea, by the by. Her fanfictions have made it to novel-lengths, and are enjoyed by thousands of tumblrites, and really, I cannot imagine a better person to follow in the footsteps of. Well, okay, a few (coughneilgaimancough), but who’s counting?

WORD COUNTS

Kurylian Saga: The Sorcerer and The Swordsman – Second Draft – WC: 130,555

Kaimi Rowe Series: Seeker Born – First draft – WC: 15,269

BLOG POSTS – 4

Writing Process Workshop

Finding your Niche in 3 Easy Steps

26 Questions No One Should Answer

The Lost Art of the Mary Sue

WEEKLY WORD COUNT GOALS

This week: 2500 words (A slow start, but I’m recovering from major Writer’s Block.)

The Lost Art of the Mary Sue

  • Posted on July 19, 2014 at 1:12 am

In case you do not know what a Mary Sue is, think immediately of Bella Swan from Twilight. Think of the main character from 50 shades of gray. Think of all those odd characters that everyone loves for no reason, and who gets what she wants, no matter what. The Mary Sue is a staple of bad fiction, and worse, bad fan-fiction, and have always been so.

But why? What is it about a Mary Sue that attracts preteen girls like flies? Why do they so desperately cling to her coattails the way everyone in her universe does? What is it about her sparkling opalescent eyes that draws in those who are just on the cusp of puberty?

Wish. Fulfillment.

Pure and simple, we flock to Mary Sues because they offer us something that we will never, ever see in real life. Absolute. Total. Acceptance. Even the Mary Sue’s faults are celebrated in-universe, in such a way that she is essentially a GOD. Even the bad things that happen to her eventually lead to amazing, wonderful things. Like the main love interest losing his shirt while comforting her. Y’know. Typical.

So, what makes us grow out of this entirely selfish wish fulfillment stage and seek out more realistic muses with which to satisfy our need to be someone else? Why, as adults, do we find it absolutely irreprehensible to admit that we ever liked bad fanfiction like My Immortal, that we ever read all of the twilight books cover to cover and wanted so badly to be Bella Swan? (I’d like it on the record I only read one and a HALF of the books, thank you.)

Perhaps it’s a case of I’m-to-old-for-this. Perhaps it’s a case of residual embarrassment. Perhaps we no longer want to admit that we have basic wants. We WANT people to like us unconditionally. We WANT to have the attractive mate of our dreams. We WANT the universe to revolve around us. No one can deny this. Humans are selfish creatures.

So, I say, there is no shame in the residual guilty pleasure we all receive from the pinnacle Mary Sue. Embrace it. Love it. And just remember, no one is EVER going to be as AMAZING as she is. EVER.

26 Questions No One Should Answer

  • Posted on July 17, 2014 at 1:51 am

Courtesy of Tumblr, I’ve found a blog-post thing that I figured I could fill out for fun and profit. Profit mainly being answers to questions I never thought I’d have to answer. So, here we go, 26 questions that literally, no one should answer, Ever.

  • A. If you could get away with one murder in your lifetime without any legal, social, or emotional repercussions, would you kill someone? -Absolutely. There are a lot of people out there that really, really do not deserve to live. And I’m pretty sure they may not know who they are. But if I were able to live a free life afterwards, I would happily murder some of them.
  • B. What is your first thought when you receive a message, are you excited for the idea of someone from potentially the other side of the world wanting to talk to you or fearful that someone will criticize you? – Well, Both, a little, but honestly, I’m just excited, because it means that someone actually wants to talk to me, and it’s someone I can hopefully have a long, heartfelt dialogue with.
  • C. Have you ever looked down on someone because you thought your religious views were superior? – No, But I have looked down on someone FOR their religious views. There are people who beleive that their religion comes over other’s basic human rights, and that in and of itself makes me angry.
  • D. Would you rather know everything the universe has to offer but in exchange lose all emotions or remain the way you are now? – …I’d rather remain the way I am now. My emotion is part of what makes me who I am. Not only that, but if I knew everything in the universe, what fun would it be? Part of the joy of life is discovering what exactly I’m looking at.
  • E. If you could live and be healthy without sleeping or eating/drinking, which would you cut out of your life? …Sleeping. Eating and drinking is VERY, VERY fun, new tastes, sensations all of that. But honestly, sleeping I would miss if only because I have really awesome nightmares sometimes that turn out to be really great story ideas.
  • F. If you could take on the exact body and form of anyone else on Earth, who would it be? – …Uh, well… I’m a little partial to the form of one Tom Hiddleston. I wouldn’t mind being him for a while.
  • G. Would you rather burn or freeze to death?-  FREEZE. ABSOLUTELY. Freezing makes you want to go to sleep. Burning just hurts. Everywhere. Forever.
  • H. If it meant it would solve all world hunger, war, disease and bigotry, would you spend the rest of eternity in Hell? – Yes. I would. Because honestly, if one person could end that much hatred and pain, then any torture is worth that sacrifice.  And if I could be that person, then I would suffer through the pain and torture knowing that my pain brings others happiness.
  • I. Was the first crush in your life something you had or something someone had on you? – A boy named Bobby Brown had a huge crush on me when I was living in West Virginia at the age of Nine. He and I went to school together, and we were best friends. Turns out, he had a huge crush on me, and for christmas, had his dad help him buy me emerald earrings. I have no idea where the earrings are, but I remember him, and I miss him to this day.
  • J. Could you live without having sex ever (again) in exchange for eternal youth? – <Asexual laughter in the distance> No, but really, I could absolutely live without ever having sex again. As an Asexual, I don’t need it, don’t like it, and honestly, would much prefer eternal youth.
  • K. Have you ever watched a full length pornographic movie? – Yep. It’s like any other movie, only with more grunting and a lot of sex.
  • L. The Beatles or The Rolling Stones? – Neither? If only because both of them are good, but not my favorite.
  • M. If you could have the ability to manipulate matter or energy, which would you choose? – Matter. Energy is constant, but matter can shape and change. So, I could, technically, create more money. Which would be useful.
  • N. What was the worst nightmare you ever had? – One night, I dreamt that I was a mother of two, in a post-apocalyptic world, covered in water. I was searching for a place for my children to be safe, and took them into one of the few non-flooded basements I could find. My child was curious, and opened a door. Inside was a creature I can only call a Revenant, a strong, fast, and vicious zombie-like thing, and it attacked the child. I tried to leap forward, to put myself between it and my child, but… I couldn’t. I woke up crying out for a child I don’t have yet.
  • O. Would you rather spend one year with your one true love just to never see them again or the rest of your life with second best? – …I…Wow, this one is hard. Probably the one year. Because better to have and lost, then never to have at all, right? But… Wow, yeah, that would be difficult.
  • P. All the sequels/remakes/adaptations/rip-offs in movies nowadays, good or bad? – Neither? Some are good, some are bad. They’re getting better, though.
  • Q. Would you rather be dirt poor and emotionally fulfilled in life or be rich beyond imagination and emotionally dissatisfied for life? – … Considering I’m dirt poor and emotionally dissatisfied right now, I’d say Rich. Because at least then I wouldn’t have to worry about where my next meal is coming from.
  • R. Do you have any (secret) feelings of bigotry to any group of people? – Unfortunately, yes. I do. I’ve often been jealous and bigoted towards those of a Mexican background. Their women are prettier than I am. Not only that, but I was jumped by a gang of mexican children when I was in gradeschool. So I harbor a grudge.
  • S. Would you rather be the only person in the world that can read minds or have everyone else in the world be able to read minds except for your own? – I’d rather read other people’s minds. Honestly, because that way, I could try and make peace with everyone.
  • T. If everyone in the world would automatically only know one language, which language would you choose? – Japanese! JAPANESE. I want to learn that language SO BAD. You have no idea.
  • U. If you were old enough and not in a situation where it would be inappropriate, would you sleep with one of your (past) school teachers/professors? – …Not really? None of them were attractive to me. And, again, Asexual.
  • V. A world without religion, good, bad, neutral? Neutral. People would find other reasons to kill each other.
  • W. The men’s rights movement, legitimate cause or laughable, and why? – Well, honestly? Legitimate cause. But not the way they’re going about it. The way most men’s rights activists go about it is to bring out their issues whenever a feminist brings out theirs. Which demeans both causes, and brings more and more distain down on both of them. Men do have problems. They can’t report rape without being laughed at. The ‘Sissy’ standard. Domestic violence issues. I understand this. But that does not compare, not right now anyway, to the systematic rape and repression of females all over the world. Personally, if MRA’s want to make things better, maybe they should concentrate on helping Feminists first.
  • X. You can eliminate one of your five senses to substantially strengthen the others, which one and would you do it? – Hearing. Because while there are lovely sounds in this world, and music is beautiful, it is nothing compared to the beauty of a sunset, or to the touch of soft fur, or the exquisite taste of a well-cooked meal.
  • Y. Do looks mean anything to you? Don’t lie, could you fall in love with someone you thought was ugly? – Looks do mean something to me. I want the person I love to take pride in their appearance. So yeah, I would have issues falling for someone I deemed unnattractive.
  • Z. Can you understand the mindset and logic used by the opposite spiritual opinion? An atheist understanding the belief in a higher power and vice versa. – As a Pagan kitchen witch, I do understand the beleif in a higher power, whom sent their most beloved down to die for you, and all like you. I don’t beleive the same, but I can understand the instinctual comfort such a thought would give.

Four Important Questions to Ask Yourself (A WDS Reflection) | Live All of You

  • Posted on July 16, 2014 at 7:20 pm

Four Important Questions to Ask Yourself (A WDS Reflection) | Live All of You.

 

This actually is a very good article. I like the way it’s paced, and I also like the questions it makes us ask ourselves. Part of what it goes into is that Blogs are read to get to know the blogger. So, of course, I’ve taken that under consideration.

Another thing that definately makes it interesting, is the idea of a statement explaining your world view. I have thought about it, and I realised that my worldview is quite simple.

Everyone should have the right to define themselves.

I think it’s nice. Please, reply in the comments with your world view!

Finding Your Niche in 3 Easy Steps

  • Posted on July 15, 2014 at 10:45 pm

For some of us, the word Niche ends up being a scary sort of thing. Something to fear and worry over. It becomes something akin to the word ‘cage’ or ‘trap’. We feel as though it is meant to hem in what we want to accomplish with the world. It isn’t something that comes easy or is to be taken lightly, and that, in and of itself, brings about a form of terror. Niche writing tends to end up very personal, and some don’t wish to be subjected to the backlash that writing a blog on ‘personal care after BDSM‘ or ‘how to trim your pubic hairs‘, but that is what they know, and love.
When it came to my attention that perhaps finding that one little niche market that meant something to me would be a good idea, I legitimately had a panic attack for several days. I didn’t want to be hemmed into something that didn’t fit. But how could I find something that did? What if it was too much for my readers to ever want to read? What if what I liked was something too obscure, and no one would want to read it?
So, I sat down, in front of my Zenwriter, and thought to myself, what are some steps I can take to make this less terrifying. What are some things I can ask myself about writing in a niche, to find out what exactly my niche was. Now, I already had a niggling thought in the back of my head of what that might be, but I didn’t necessarily want to force myself into it.
The first question in my list was: What do I want to share with the world?
This was easy. I want to share fantasy with everyone. I want to share it in a way that makes everyone feel included. Women, men, transgender, genderqueer, gay, straight, bisexual, asexual, aromantic, everyone, everywhere should be able to read a fantasy book and think, “oh wow, I wish that I could experience that.”
The second question was: Okay, but what do you want to share with the world ON YOUR BLOG?
This wasn’t so easy. In fact, it’s what caused the several day panic attack. I want to share myself with the world. I want to let everyone know who I am and where I come from and why I’m the way I am. But I also want to share with the world the things that are wrong, and the things that are right and the things that are beautiful. I want to teach the world to accept not only itself but everyone else, and to see that we are all the same in that we dream beautiful dreams.
That lead to the question: But how can I share this with the world?
A friend of mine, Chris Votey, brought up the idea of interviews with other LGBTQA writers, Reviews of other writer’s work, and offering myself as a representative of Asexual culture. Which, honestly, I wouldn’t find too bad. It would take a lot of time, and energy however. But, I find the more I think about it, the less I mind. Because really, isn’t it about what I give, not what it takes from me? Then, I thought about what else I could do to share my dream of representation with the world.
Resources. I could provide resources for things that most people don’t think of. I could try to provide a unique look into certain subcultures. I could write about the things that interest me, and hopefully, provide enough information that others would like it. But that won’t get me any closer to being like those I admire. That won’t bring me the same sort of love that Misha Collins, Andrew Hussie, or Neil Gaiman have. That won’t help others to see my words.
Then, I thought that perhaps I could start with lists. With things that I find out, over the course of my journey to become a full-fledged author. Such as this list that you’re reading right now. That definitely helped to ease my panic a little. Because lists, lists are small, and easy, and quickly done, so I can definitely work with them. Another thing I could have tried is perhaps snippets of information found throughout the internet. Or perhaps little anecdotes from my life that help me to focus on what it is I am working on.
But that’s all very abstract and not very well thought out. So, I rewrote it.

 

1) What is it that I want to share with the world?
– Representation for all, and fantasy that everyone can enjoy.

2) What is it that I want to share with those reading my blog?
-Ways to spread Representation, My thoughts on LGBTQA representation, and my progress in my quest for more.

3) How am I to share this?
– Lists
– Personal anecdotes
– Resources found throughout my internet trawling
– Interviews with other LGBTQA writers
– Reviews of websites, blogs and books written for/by other LGBTQA writers
– Snippets of my writing and writing styles

And there you have it. My path to finding my niche, and settling into it. I hope this helps you, because it certainly helped me. If you need any more information, please, leave a comment, or email me, and I’ll be happy to help you find your niche too. And please, don’t hesitate to speak up.

WRITING PROCESS BLOGHOP

  • Posted on July 8, 2014 at 11:00 pm

 ((Sign courtesy of a google search, created by makeitcrafty.com))

I must say, this is really exciting. I’ve never done a blog hop before, and when Chris Votey offered to tag me into his, I just couldn’t say no! He’s been such a great mentor, trying to teach me the ins and outs of the writing world, and helping me establish a platform, that I honestly feel more welcome here than I do in most other places! And that’s saying something, as I’m quite the extrovert.

When Chris explained to me what exactly a blog hop was, I sort of understood, only because it seemed like something he would do. He’s very into exploring how writing works, and teaching others what they should do to make their writing careers go smoother. Luckily, his own writing career is amazing, especially with his recently released short novel, Terran Psychosis. I read it, and wow, it was such a twist ending, I literally had to skype him the minute I finished it and gush.  It’s really amazing, not to mention inspiring.

However, he told me that there were four main questions I would have to answer in a Writing Process Bloghop. These questions pertain to how I write, why I write, and the actual process. All of this is daunting, as I never really took a look at the specifics. I figured, if it wasn’t broken, don’t fix it, right? But after writing this up and looking it over, I realised that I honestly had no idea why or how I do what I do! Which is just not acceptable. You see, as a writer, and as a person, I strive to always know more. And knowing oneself is half the battle!

First Question: What am I working on?

The biggest project right now, is finding betareaders/editors for my novel The Sorcerer and The Swordsman, which I hope to have published sometime this year. The rough draft is finished, and I’ve edited it into a workable second draft. Now it’s just time to find people to read over my baby and pick it apart with a fine toothed comb. After all, who knows what timeline snafoos I’ve made, or minor spelling errors, or worse, TELLING instead of SHOWING. *gasp*

Another project that’s got my goat is my novella, The Princess of Dolls. A retelling of the Nutcracker, the story is actually really intriguing, as I’ve changed the main character Clara into a trans*girl named Aurora (Rory for short!) But the manuscript is giving me some trouble, as I really, really can’t figure out the ending! I hate it when that happens. I’ve got a decent start though, and the cute romance that’s unfolding is just enough to keep me from shelving the darn thing permanently.

After those two are finished, I’m hoping to get started on a mystery/Urban Fantasy series that I don’t really have hashed out yet. Suffice to say Sugar Baby lifestyle meets Fae underworld is DEFINATELY something I’m going to be throwing around. Hopefully, it doesn’t give me as much trouble as the two above. No promises though.

Second Question:  How does my work differ from others in it’s genre?

To be honest, the only thing I can really think of is that I’m trying to provide representation for as many LGBTA minorities as possible. That, and I am attempting to make fantasy that EVERYONE can relate to, in some way. Not just the same cookie-cutter princess/knight characters, but people that are flawed and imperfect and learning about themselves along the way. Fantasy is pretty hard to be different in, as it’s basically all different.

What I want, for my work, is to be known as something that anyone can pick up and find themselves a character they relate to. No matter who you are, I want someone that you can relate with, and understand, in my books. I want villains that are heroes in their own minds, I want heroes that make utterly stupid choices. I want everyone to have representation. I’m tired of people like me, asexuals, being forgotten in the dust. And I’m really tired of people not be able to find representation in books. It’s almost as bad as TV, and that’s saying something.

Third Question: Why do I write what I do?

Well, honestly, I write what I do, because if I didn’t, no one would be able to see the things I see when I dream. I’d be the only one to get to view these beautiful worlds in my mind, and that’s just sad. I can’t stand the thought that I won’t be able to find someone, anyone, who will say, “y’know, I had a dream like that once.” Because most of my books are based off of the nightmares I have at night, and the dreams that they become, it means that there’s a lot of personal baggage entwined with each one.

Also, I write the things I write because I like the story. I WANT to know why Yumil does the things he does in the Kurylian Saga. I want to know why the people in my stories behave the way they do in my mind. And the only way to find out is to put it on paper. Plus, I like being able to say, HEY. I WROTE A BOOK. WHAT DID YOU DO WITH YOUR LIFE?

Fourth Question: How does my writing process work?

Legitimately, I have no idea. Here’s what I do, most of the time. I put on music. Usually that weird ten hour jazz video on youtube, and the rainsounds website. Then, I sit at my computer and stare at Tumblr for a few hours. Finally, I tell myself one last time, that I have GOT to write SOMETHING. Usually, that gets me in gear. After that, I sit down in front of scrivener, or this blog, and start typing whatever comes to my head. Then, I stop, gather my thoughts, remember what I was trying to get across, and finish typing the other half.

For blog posts, I usually don’t edit. They’re more of a stream of conciousness thing. For my novels, however, I try to force myself not to edit until I at least have the first draft done. Then, I go crazy with the editing. After editing, I read it again, usually out loud to my boyfriend. Then, I edit again.

I don’t know if it exactly WORKS. But it works well enough for me. I love my writing process, even if sometimes I get so stuck that I can’t even write. Those are the hard days. But luckily, I have a lot of people in my life who like to remind me that they want to read my stories. And that helps a lot.

Now, I get to introduce to you four lovely people whom I think you should check out. They’ll be introducing their writing process to you sometime next week, so take a look and get subscribed to em, so you don’t miss a single word, okay?

First and foremost, we have the LOVELY miss Sonya Craig, who writes a science fiction series about the perilous and insane life and times of the intrepid Taiga Chavez and her beloved ragtag crew! Hit her up on twitter @SonyaCraig15 for the Excessive Fun Factor.

Next, we have Johanna Harlow, who’s blog has done a lot for my writing style, as well as my characterisation! Definately someone to keep an eye on, that’s for sure, especially as she gets closer to the release date for her Sci-fi/Fantasy novel, Alter Ego.

And then, we’ve got the lovely Miss Dyane Forde who’s book, The Purple Morrow, is discussed in detail on her blog, Dropped Pebbles.  A wonderful Woman of Color after my very own heart, she is an inspiration to all authors everywhere! Not to mention, she has guest blogs and interviews on regular intervals too!

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