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Happy New Year! [The making of a creative life.]

Can we all just agree that 2017 was rough? Whether it was personal or political (or both-definitely both), it feels good that 2017 is over and there’s a clean slate. I debated whether or not to reflect on 2017, since that’s my New Year’s Eve tradition, and I decided it was wise to skip it …

NaNo Prep

The making of a NaNo rebel

That’s right. I’ve gone to the dark side of NaNoWriMo. Somewhere between realizing that we have only three days to prepare for NaNo (it’s okay, you can panic) and looking at my bursting-at-the-seams schedule, I decided that taking on a whole novel in one month would be disastrous. Catastrophic, even. I like this story idea. …

NaNo Prep

NaNo Prep Day #5: Characters

Technically at this point, you can be cut loose with your one-sentence summary and barrel into NaNo and the pantsing world. Pantsing, if you’re unfamiliar with the terminology, is when an author flies by the seat of their pants instead of relying on a plan or outline. Generally, pantsers do have an idea of their story; it’s …

Reviews

To the worlds we travel in our minds and what to make of them

I picked up a book that was on a horror display at my library. It’s called NOS4A2 by Joe Hill. At the time, I didn’t know this was one of my idol’s (Stephen King) son, but after reading the first few chapters, the similarities were unmistakable. I won’t spoil the book and I won’t rewrite my …

NaNo Prep

NaNo Prep Day #4: Crafting your pitch

If you’ve put away your mind map, take it out again. You’ll need it. This step is less like the traditional elevator pitch–you know, when you’re at a conference and you’re standing in an elevator with a literary agent, and you have twenty seconds (at most) to sell your story to them–and more like a …

NaNo Prep

NaNo Prep Day 3: The Mind Dump

If you’re still hanging around waiting for another prep post, dear reader, thank you. Truly. Loyal readers like you keep me going. Life kind of got away from me this past month, and I just bought myself some time to work out the kinks. The life of a starving artist and all that. (Let’s change …

NaNo Prep, Uncategorized

NaNo Prep Day 2: Choosing an idea

If you’re just joining us, this is a mini-series during October to help prepare for NaNoWriMo in November. You can see past posts in the series here and here. One of the most frequent questions I (and authors in general) get is: How do you come up with your ideas? And the truth is, I have …

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This is what happens when I declare something.

Not more than a week ago, I declared a niche for my writing. I decided to focus on all things spooky and horror and supernatural (in the freaked-out-omg-what’s-that-behind-my-shower-curtain way). And I was really excited when I did this because, let’s face it, October is a great time for spooky stories. Except my Muse was none too pleased. …

NaNo Prep

NaNo Prep: What exactly is NaNo?

You might be a seasoned NaNo participant. (Yay! So am I!) But some of you might be confused by all these references to NaNo. I’m here to clear up the confusion. NaNo is short for NaNoWriMo, which is short for National Novel Writing Month. It’s kind of an international phenomenon at this point, but it …

Book recommendations

National Book Month [a new challenge]

October is National Book Month, so I thought it was only appropriate to do a mini-series on the blog. Here are some fun bookish facts, and here’s an article showing five ways you can get participate in NBM this month.   I’m still neck-deep in the book NOS4A2 by Joe Hill, Stephen King’s son. He’s just as …