V is for Value

What defines value?

For writers, this is a question we must ask frequently. How do we write things that will have value for our readers?

Value can mean many things. There’s literary value, popular value, sentimental value, monetary value. Some of these matter more to some writers than others. Continue reading “V is for Value”

S is for Short Stories

Lately, even though I mostly write novels, I’ve been playing around with short stories. I’ve been doing this:

  1. For the challenge of it. It’s fun to shake things up and develop new skills.
  2. For improving my writing. Condensing a story into just a few pages or paragraphs takes discipline and subtlety, and I’m hoping this close examination of short stories will improve my longer ones.
  3. For the sake of submission. Is it just me, or are there more contests out there for shorter works? With society’s growing inclination for shorter things, I think it makes sense to learn how to write well in a short space, especially if you want to publish.

Continue reading “S is for Short Stories”

F is for Fears

I was recently asked the question: what are your writing fears? And the answer wasn’t quite what I expected. It was just something I wrote down as the first idea that came into my head, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized it’s probably my biggest one.

I fear that I write too much for myself. That what I write is really just for me and won’t resonate with others. Continue reading “F is for Fears”

E is for Edit

The last stage of writing is one that I have yet to complete, at least for a novel, anyway. But editing and proofing have always been integral parts of my work, so out of all the parts of the writing process, this is one place that I feel within my element.

Editing is not glamorous. It’s tedious and nitty-gritty, and it takes a careful repetitiveness, but I’m OCD enough that I really like it.

So how do I go about editing? Continue reading “E is for Edit”

D is for Draft

Drafting might be one of my favorite steps in the process of writing.

There is so much possibility in the first couple of drafts. While stories have the ability to surprise you at any point in the process, I think the drafting stage is when they are most alive and untamed. No matter how much time you spend in the previous stage of creating the plot many things can change when actually writing. Continue reading “D is for Draft”

B is for Books

Because without books, I’m nowhere.

Before I had any idea how much fun travel could be, I was going on adventures every day by reading. And no matter how many amazing places I see in the world, there’s nothing like a great book’s ability to take you to somewhere you’ve never been. And for me as a writer, the book is the inspiration and the aspiration, something to look towards.

Continue reading “B is for Books”

A is for Adventure

Lately, I’ve been thinking about what I want this blog to be, what theme I want it to encompass.

As I’ve come to be a more consistent blogger over the past year, I’ve realized that I most enjoy blogging about two topics: writing and traveling.

The more I’ve thought about it, the more I’ve realized that writing and traveling are very connected. Both allow you to explore new worlds and adventures. Both entail a combined process of research and spontaneity in their exploration. Both like to surprise you.

Continue reading “A is for Adventure”

A-Z Challenge: Coming Soon!

For the month of April, I will be participating in the A-Z Blog Challenge, and I invite you to join me! What is the A-Z Challenge, you ask? To quote the website: “…you would start beginning April First with a topic themed on something with the letter A, then on April second another topic with the letter B as the theme, and so on until … Continue reading A-Z Challenge: Coming Soon!

Should You Write Your Story in Chronological Order?

I wrestled with this question leading up to NaNoWriMo this year. Should I attempt to write my story in chronological order, even in the first draft?

You see, until the story I wrote for NaNo, I had not yet written any fictional story in chronological order. In fact, it’s rare that I write much of anything in order, including essays for school or documents for work. I tend to start with what I know or what seems like the most fun part to write, and then I rearrange later as I shape the work and figure out what I want it to be.

Continue reading “Should You Write Your Story in Chronological Order?”

Winning NaNoWriMo

I did it. I won NaNoWriMo!

I wrote 50,035 words, and I did it in the span of 30 days. And honestly, it doesn’t feel real yet. Even though I’ve scrolled through all of that text — all the good and the bad, the parts I love and hate. Even though I know that quite a few hours of my November were spent writing, I’m still in awe. Me? The procrastinator? The “I don’t write fiction” girl? The one who used to say “I don’t have time to write”? The same person who frantically wrote 15K just this weekend because I wanted to win? Yep. That girl. Somewhere, somehow, and quite possibly by magic, I did it.

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NaNoWriMo 2014: Week One Check-In

It’s hard to believe one week of November, and thus, one full week of NaNo is already behind us. I can’t believe it. Next thing I know, it will be over and I’ll be putting up a Christmas tree!

So, how’d week one go? Well, for me, it went better than expected, all things considered. This week was busier than I thought it would be. (I thought this was going to be my “quiet” week in November. Oh, how wrong I was.) Thus, with not anywhere near as much time on my hands as I had hoped, and only two dedicated writing sessions this week, I’m happy to report that my word count is not abysmally off par.

Continue reading “NaNoWriMo 2014: Week One Check-In”