Lately I’ve been stressed, but not over things that make sense. I’ve been anxious about things that don’t matter, but anxious nonetheless. For a while, I felt like there wasn’t much I could do, so I didn’t do anything. I just sat there and wallowed in my pain and heartache; well, not exactly. I tried to ask God for help and I knew he was there for me, but I was still worried, fearful, anxious, and nauseated. I took some time off school and tried to numb my mind with lots of Dick Van Dyke, but it didn’t really help. It felt like there wasn’t anything I could do, but when I was talking to my mom about how upset I was, she told me that sometimes we just have to give it all to God. That’s it. Just take everything and drop it at God’s feet. If you give something to someone, then it’s not yours anymore, so if I give my fears, worries, and dreams to God, they aren’t mine anymore; they’re his. And that means I don’t have to worry about them anymore. So I’ve given it all to God. It isn’t easy, I still feel stressed sometimes, but I also feel grateful…grateful that God brought me to this place, because if I hadn’t felt this way, I wouldn’t have realized how much I needed him, which, in case you’re wondering, is a lot.
- Pray. You can write with or without the creator of the universe on your side, and although I think it’s pretty clear which option is the better of the two, for those of you who need a little extra help, the answer is with.
- Coffee. Let me start by saying that coffee is wonderful, particularly dark roast. So if you’re feeling a little low on energy and motivation, do yourself a favor and drink some coffee; or, if you’re one of those weirdos who doesn’t like coffee, drink some nice, nasty herbal tea. Whatever helps.
- Listen to Music. Music is an awesome way to get moving with just about any task and writing is no exception, so click shuffle play and get going.
- Set Deadlines. I am definitely one of those people who love lists. And plans, and charts, and over the top organization in general. Basically, I enjoy having deadlines. Even if you aren’t filled with an overwhelming love for deadlines, if you ever plan to write professionally, you’re going to have them, so why not start learning how to manage your time now?
- Write it Out. Writing down everything you have to do can be so helpful. Even if you aren’t going to set time limits for each thing, it is so nice to sit down, think of everything you have to do, and put it on paper. Trust me, those dreaded to-do lists have a purpose.
As writers, we often need to make ourselves feel certain emotions. The thing is, when I’m sitting in my bedroom eating ice cream and trying to type at the same time, the likelihood of me feeling extreme sorrow over a breakup that isn’t mine, is pretty low…until music comes along. If you’re a writer and you don’t use music to help you write, let me just say, I have no clue how you’re doing it. Anway, here is a list of songs that are fabulously full of emotions.
Remembrance/Looking Back: I’ll Remember This by Chris Howland and Matthew Parker and Sailing by Holly Starr.
Sadness Over A Breakup: Not The End of Me by Group 1 Crew, Summer Again by The Afters, Say It Now by The Afters, and Love’s to Blame by For King and Country
Recovery: Braver Still by JJ Heller and Sane by For King and Country
Trust: People Change by For King and Country, Ghost by Matthew Parker, and Let Down Your Guard by JJ Heller
Bravery/Courage To Fight: Run the Race by Holly Starr, Warrior by Hannah Kerr, Long Live by For King and Country, It’s Not Over Yet by For King and Country, and Never Going Back To OK by The Afters
Friendship/Love: Steady by For King and Country, Never Giving Up On You by Matthew Parker, How to Fall by Josh Wilson, and Until You Came Along by JJ Heller
A lot happened in October, and I’m really hoping that even more will happen in November.
For one, I hope that my book will get better. In fact, I hope it will get done. My co-author and I are so stinkin close to being done that I can taste it. I mean we are going to be doing line edits this month and we have a query letter that just might be halfway decent. I really can’t wait to send out the queries and start on the second book, but the time is yet to come, so I’ll wait, even if I don’t like it.
Another thing that I hope to see more of in November is growth in my relationship with God. Recently, I’ve started to realize (again) that if I give God the chance, he will show me things to pray for so I can become more like him, and like everyone else, that is something I desperately need.
Also, in case you are interested, this month Wonder comes out, and, if I’m not mistaken, so does the MICHAEL VEY TV SHOW. If you can’t tell, I’m excited for the first one and like, REALLY excited for the second.
Lastly, I’m hoping to try and read a little more, outside of school that is, even though writing is keeping me extremely busy, and I could use some good book recommendations. I like upper middle grade and clean YA books, preferably realistic fiction, but some fantasy isn’t bad either, so if you know of any book like that, please let me know in the comments.
Thanks for reading!
Hello! Today I made up a tag! A super quick and easy tag to help us spread the love for our favorite Dorky, Geeky, and Nerdy characters. If someone has already done something like this, I’m sorry, I didn’t know. Also, if you do this tag, please leave me a comment about it so I can check it out! Okay, here are the questions:
1. Who is your favorite dorky character?
Okay, this one is easy for me, or maybe I’m just not thinking hard enough, either way, I’m going with Noah Estaban from the Embassy Row series by Ally Carter. I absolutely adore Noah, almost as much as Alexei. His sense of humor is fantastic, and the way he messes up what he is trying to say is wonderful.
2. Who is your favorite geeky character?
Okay, this is harder…or wait, maybe it isn’t. Yeah, I’m going to go with Lucas Winthrop from the Pumpkin Falls series by Heather Vogel Frederick. Lucas is just such an adorable geek…The frog dissection was amazing…I love him.
3. Who is your favorite nerdy character?
No question, folks, it’s Liz Sutton from Gallagher Girls by Ally Carter! I love her clumsiness, her beautifully nerdy ways, her constant reading, EVERYTHING.
Oh, and lastly, I tag Lila Kims from The Cheapskate Bibliomaniac to do this tag, if she so desires, or anyone else for that matter who wants to participate.
Welcome to a brand new series on my blog: Smart or Not. Basically, the concept of this series is that although I have a 4.0 GPA, I often do or think things that make me wonder if my intelligence is closer to that of a jellyfish. I hope you enjoy!
Ever since reading Finally by Wendy Mass I’ve been scared of waxing. Reading about Rory’s experience pretty much traumatized me, and, for a long time, I didn’t want to use body wax unless it was going to save me from a painful death by electric eels. Well, eventually, I got my nerve up, and I decided to let my mom help me wax my eyebrows. The funny thing is that when we were getting ready to do the waxing, I told my mom I wanted to do it, and she was like, “Uh, you might want to let me.” So I agreed, and as she was doing it I noticed that she was only spreading it around certain parts of my eyebrow.
“I thought you do it over the whole thing,” I said, looking confused.
Oh yeah, you heard right. I thought that when you wax your eyebrows you spread it over the entire eyebrow and that the wax knew which hairs to take off. This is the mark of a genius for sure. So, taking into consideration the fact that I thought “smart wax” was a thing, you tell me, do you think I’m smart or not?
Anyway, taking into consideration the fact that I thought “smart wax” was a thing, you tell me, do you think I’m smart or not?
Today I come to you with my first ever guest post, written by a friend of mine, Lila Red from The Cheapskate Bibliomaniac. This post is all about the pros and cons of fairy tale retellings, and I really hope you enjoy it! I also did a guest post on Lila’s blog about the pros and cons of co-authoring, so when you’re done reading this, head over to her blog and check it out. Without further ado, here are the reasons you should and shouldn’t write a fairy tale retelling:
PRO: You can do a lot with the simple stories.
Think Red Riding Hood. Think Snow White. Goldilocks. Cinderella. Etc., etc. These tales are short and sweet, leaving plenty of room for twisting and deforming until you have – for instance – a long, complex science fiction novel based on the incredibly short Goldilocks story. Hansel and Gretel is spacious enough for many intriguing side plots, Red Riding Hood practically begs to be transformed to a different genre, and Snow White drips with potential for romantic conflict. I could give you many other similar examples. The possibilities are l i m i t l e s s.
CON: It’s easy to borrow too much from the original.
Be creative. Be very, very creative. I don’t think many readers want Cinderella simply rewritten, with only several tiny elements twisted into something only slightly different. What readers often love to see is the elements of the fairy tale bent and woven into the story so that they have to make at least a small effort to spot them. They often want an immensely altered story, and yet they want the old fairy tale to remain noticeable. Unfortunately, it can be easy for writers to use the retelling as an excuse not to pump their creative juices. They can sit back, relax, and keep many of the elements the exact same.
I’m not saying it’s a rule. I’m not saying there aren’t commendable exceptions. The retelling I’m currently writing holds to a lot of the original aspects of the tale, and most of my characters have the same names as they do in the original stories. What I’ve done to make up for that is woven several fairy tales into one. What I’m focusing on is knitting them together in creative ways.
I’m just saying it’s easy to borrow too much. I leave you to find other meanings of that phrase. XD
PRO: Fairy tale retellings are popular.
At least, in the YA realm they’re popular.
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige
A Court of Thorn and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
Splintered by A.G. Howard
Beastly by Alex Flinn
I haven’t read all of these, nor do I have any intention of reading most of them. I’m not supporting these books in any way – I’m only pointing out that there are a lot of popular fairy tale retellings out there. What better way to up your chances of your book becoming popular than to make it a fairy tale retelling? Readers seem to be falling all over themselves for fresh new twists on age-old stories.
CON: Fairy tale retellings are popular.
Yes, this is also a con. If you’re at the lowest stage of writing a retelling – the “considering” stage – then you have a long road ahead of you. Let’s say you plan on publishing traditionally. There’s the first drafting, then the rewriting, then the storyline editing, then the copy editing, then the querying, then the waiting, then the rejections, then the more waiting and more rejections, and so on and so forth. It’ll be months, perhaps even years, before you get an agent. From there it’ll take even longer for your book to hit the shelves.
By the time your retelling is finally published, it could be that the trend will have faded, if it hasn’t begun to already. I know that some readers are fed up with all the fairy tale twists – although I personally don’t understand how anyone could grow tired of them. Thankfully, there are still PLENTY of die-hard fans out there! But trends normally disappear as something new and fresh starts to attract attention.
It’s my belief and hope that fairy tale retellings will defy the norm and always hold an elevated position in the bookosphere, but you never know.
Writing a fairy tale retelling has been heaps of fun for me, but every writer is different. I hope this list was helpful, and I strongly encourage you to give a retelling a try even if you’re doubtful that it’s the right genre for you. It’s always healthy to expand your writing experience by attempting to write stories of many genres.
Alright, that wraps it up, Thanks so much, Lila! Hope everyone enjoyed this great post, and don’t forget to go check out my post!