Tuesday, May 28, 2013

On why I don't tell people I like to read/write

Me: I loooove reading and writing.
Random teenager: Oh, so you pretty much like to do school stuff.


I think when an adult claims he or she wants to be a writer, people typically respond like it's a cute idea. Like it's not a legitimate dream. Like somewhere the wannabe-writer's parents went wrong and that person received improper guidance as a child.

When a teenager claims he or she wants to be a writer, other teenagers typically respond like a) they think when someone say "write" it means essays analyzing various rhetorical devices and detailing the use of symbolism or b) "Oh yeah, that's cool. Maybe I'll write a book someday."

To be fair, option B probably applies heavily to both adults and teenagers.

But yeah. This is why a lot of people don't know that I like to read or write. Others rarely understand what it really means to me and I don't feel like I need to explain myself to anybody or justify the appeal of reading and writing.

Please note that this is a simple opinion and definitely a generalization. I used the word "typically" to indicate that these responses do not happen every time. I do not think all people who do not want to be a writer are incapable of grasping the concept.

And just for funzies I leave you with this:

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Lions, Tigers, and College OH MY!

Okay, so the only lions and tigers are the ones that prowl through my belly when I think of college. Junior year is wrapping up in only a couple days, so it's time to start thinking seriously, really consider the future.

Which is horrifying. For me, at least.

But also exciting.

Because this is it.

In a few years, I'm going to begin life.

I'm going to put my big girl panties on and go to college and work toward a career. Not a job, but a CAREER.

But first I have to decide which college I want to go to.

Obviously, I want to be a writer. But, realistically speaking, that's not a career I can expect to make a living off of or even expect to steadily maintain. It's just not. Besides that, my dream is to be a literary agent or involved in the publishing industry in some way. But that's not a career one simply attains. I can't just fill out an application and BOOM become a big publishing industry sensation.

So here's the deal. I can move to New York for college, somewhere I will be traveling to for the first time this summer, and chase after that dream as fast as possible. I'll be in a ginormicous, frightening city and not know a single soul. Things will be expensive and I'll probably cry a lot. My family will be far, far away in Florida. But I'll be able to get my hand in the industry (hopefully) right away. I can try for internships and get involved in the heart of publishing.

Or I can move back to Florida where both of my brothers and my sister live, willing to be there for me and help me get through everything. (I'm the baby, and also the favorite, so everyone is willing to do anything for me!) I can go to the school my brother goes to. I can be comfortable. I might still be able to be a little involved in publishing but not nearly as much as if I lived in NY.

It's crazy to actually have to think of all these things. I like to believe I have all the time in the world to make this decision, but in reality, I don't. Not even close. In just a few months I'll have to actually start applying at colleges and making plans and...



Anyway, I guess I'll apply to colleges in both states and then go from there. I'm confident enough in myself to know that, when the time comes, I'll make the decision best for me.

Something that I do hate, though, is that either option leaves me far away from my best friends (in Arkansas) and pretty much everything my life has become in the past year and a half (when I moved here). I know it happens to the majority of people, but it is difficult to fathom a life in which I don't talk to any of my current friends.

On a brighter note, however, I'm pretty sure this summer is going to be the best I've ever had. I'll be going to NYC with my choir this summer. Rooming with my best friend, seeing The Lion King on Broadway, getting my last chance to spend some time with the seniors I've become close with this year, and bonding with some of my favorite people in this world (because who doesn't love choir kids?). It will probably be the best 3 days in my entire life. Then, I'll be going to choir camp. I went last year and it was fun, but I had no idea what to expect going into it. So, I just kind of coasted through. I went along with everything, but never really participated. I'm already planning for it this time! Then I have a trip to Florida to see my family and this really awesome volunteering thing I'm doing where I help kids with their reading and math.

Unfortunately, that doesn't leave a lot of time for reading and writing this summer, but at least I get in some light, fun times before life officially gets superserious.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

A Piece Of My Soul 1

Here's a little excerpt from something I'm writing, AKA me displaying a little piece of my soul. I would really love some CONSTRUCTIVE feedback, be it positive or negative. 

The dinner proceeds in a typical and uncomfortable fashion. Mr. Aarons and my father make negotiations with business lingo that is nearly indecipherable. Mrs. Aarons has receded into herself, only nodding her agreement when the men speak. Luke is holding my hand under the table; not in a possessive way or a demanding way. He’s just listening to the businessmen’s conversation, holding my hand. This is the way things used to be between us, years ago, when we first started seriously dating. Luke would always hold my hand or wrap an arm around me or kiss me just because he liked touching me. It’s little moments like these that let me know somewhere, lurking in the depths of his being, there is real love for me. And it’s little moments like these that cause me more pain than any sort of physical damage Luke could possibly inflict.

Once appetizers have been picked at, miniscule dinner entrees devoured, and napkins set atop plates, Mr. Aarons stands with a very charming, very schmoozing grin and announces a smoke break. My father and several suited men accompany him to the back porch. I am shocked when Luke jumps to his feet and follows them. Luke has a lot of flaws, but smoke makes him sick. As he shuffles out the glass-paned French door, Luke quickly glances back at me, forehead creased. 

Mrs. Aarons beams at me from across the table, ignoring the few businessmen that decided to remain. I don’t get why she’s so happy-happy-joy-joy tonight. Usually she hides inside of her little shell until every last stranger has driven away. But all of a sudden she has emerged from it, eyes twinkling. The easy assumption would be that she’s drunk, but Mrs. Aarons never drinks. At least, not in front of others.

Nobody speaks, and I feel extraordinary awkward because Mrs. Aarons just keeps looking at me and grinning. 

Call me queen of observation, but I think something is going on. 

Several minutes later, the men file back into the dining room. Luke exchanges a look with my father and his. They return to their seats. Luke does not; instead, he approaches me. Any concern he may have been wearing earlier has vanished, replaced with a slight curve of his lips. Gazes cling to us from all around the table and the only thing I can do is swallow my wonderful What The Hell face and smile, like surprises from Luke are my favorite. 


So, opinions would be nice! If you have anything on your blog that you would like feedback on, feel free to let me know! :D 

Monday, December 5, 2011

Busy week + Snow

I've been such a lazy turd lately! I've barely done any reading or writing. It's like all I want to do is eat, sleep, and watch Buffy. And this week will be even worse! I have such a busy week ahead of me. Today and tomorrow I have after school rehearsals for the Madrigal Feaste which is a thing I'm doing for choir. Then, Thursday evening I have a Christmas concert and I'll be going home with my friend. On Friday evening I have Madrigal Feaste performance number 1, and I'll be spending the night at my friends house that night because on Saturday I have Madrigal Feaste performance number 2! On the bright side, the cute boy that I have a huge crush on is in the chamber singers (which is the more advanced choir) and they perform at our concert, and he is playing the king in the Madrigal Feaste, so I get to secretly pine for him three days in a row - not to mention the days of rehearsal!

And then, of course, exams are coming soon. Exams are one of the only bad things about exams, in my opinion. But on another bright side, today we received our first snow! It was so exciting!! I grew up in Florida so I had never seen snow until today. I started hyperventilating and jumping up and down and nearly crying. I was so excited I couldn't eat. I danced in the snow, too. Gosh, it was awesome!! Everyone is all negative and says I'll get sick of the snow very quickly, but I'm going to enjoy it for the time being.

So, that's what's happening with me. What's going on with you?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


I failed NaNo. But that's okay. I sort of expected to because I alternate between WIPs wayyy too much. I have, like, 10 different stories in the works at the moment. I'll try again next year, but hopefully by that time I'll know what it feels like to write "The End" And even though I failed NaNo, I still think I've been doing pretty good on my writing. Every time I actually do get to sit down and write, I crank out about 2,000 words. For me, that's a lot - even if most of those words are, you know, not good.

So, how'd you do on your NaNo project? I want to know :D

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

20k words and a main character that can't speak.

I hit 20,000 words the other day on my werewolf WIP. I am exceedingly proud of this achievement, because it is only the second time I have ever gotten so far on one of my stories. Which is funny because the only other story I got that many words (I actually got about 45k) was this story - the first time around. That was when I realized my characters and world lacked depth, I did way too much info dumping, and the whole thing pretty much sucked.

I am really glad that I went back and began to re-write the story. I feel like it has improved by 3 billion. I know my characters a lot better and my plot and where the story needs to go.

Now, onto the second part of the title.

A main character who cannot speak.

Yeah, that's right. I am writing a story in which the main character - the hero, the narrator - is a mute due to a curse that was bestowed upon him in order to pay a debt for the crimes of his siren mother. Granted, it is a paranormal and his love interest is very special so she can communicate telepathically and whatnot. I doubt the story will go anywhere, but it provides an excellent opportunity for me to expand my writing skills. And it's a lot of fun, because my stories always contain a little too much dialogue.

I'm hoping it will help me learn to better balance description and emotion in my narration, because that is one thing I struggle with a lot. Usually, when I describe things I forget to include the character's personality and emotions, and when I am focused on the character's feelings I forget to explain what is happening.

I actually have all the major technical aspects for the story worked out. Like MC's family history and how his curse came to be. Also, Love Interest's Big Secret and why she has the ability to communicate with MC telepathically. My MC is also a genius, so his voice is a lot more intelligent and slightly more formal than anything else I've ever written.

In fact, this whole story is a lot different than everything else I've ever written. Boy narrator (which is actually something I've done before) that cannot speak. Monarchy-ruled society. Paranormal creatures are an accepted fact. And MC is really vulnerable and emotional, which are qualities I never ever instill in my MCs.

So yeah, I'm excited. Even if the idea of creating a protagonist that cannot speak is ridiculous.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Writing what you love VS Writing to sell

I've got a confession.

One day, I hope to be a published author one day.

I know, big shocker! I think that most people who love to write have that goal, so they are rushing to write unique books that'll grab an agent's attention. One that will sell. Sometimes it may work, but most of the time, it doesn't. Because those types of books are lacking a major element.


One thing I learned about writing is that it is absolutely crucial to write something you feel passionate about.

My current WIP is about werewolves. I'll start by saying that I didn't know from the beginning that it would be about werewolves, but that's how it worked out. And contrary to what many people believe, I know that my story wouldn't sell. Werewolves are all over the place, so most people assume that playing off of those authors' ideas will make them money. It won't. My plot isn't necessarily unoriginal, but it isn't original either. There's nothing especially extraordinary about it that would ever score me an agent or anything. I have unique ideas that would probably sell, but not my werewolf one.

So why am I writing it?

Because I love it. The characters are constantly in my head; trying to have conversations with themselves, with each other, and most importantly, with me. I've tried to push them to the side and write other things, but they refuse. They want their story to be told, and I am the only one who can do it.

One character wants everyone to know the heartache he endured when his girlfriend left him for another guy.

Another character wants everyone to know that people are generally scary, but sometimes one person can come along and turn you inside out and make you realize that just maybe, not everyone is bad.

And finally, the main character wants everyone to know that crap happens - LIFE happens - and sometimes there is nothing you can do about it. It's not about the bad things that are hurled at you, but how you catch and handle those things. And maybe it's okay to blame other people from time to time. And that no matter what happens, you're not horrible.

I love my characters, I know them. I need to write about them. Even if I'm the only one who ever reads about them. Their story can be our little secret. It is unfortunate that these characters will probably only be loved by me, but maybe one day I can find some place else for them. Maybe one day they will land in an alternate universe where there will be an even more exciting adventure waiting for them.

But maybe not.

What matters is their story right now, the one that exists in my mind and in my heart. Because I know that I'll feel more satisfied if I finish this book, the one that I love with everything inside of me, than if I finish a story that "sells" that I am only iffy about. My dad would probably be more happy about the latter, but writing is the one thing I do for myself.

And, of course, the voices inside my head.