Journal

Writing:

There are times I didn’t think I’d make it, but I’ve finished the latest draft of the Gothic WIP. Structural edits get intricate at times, but I think I’ve excavated the main point of the story. There were subplots to add, and some to remove. The story is better for it.

Stats for the number crunchers: 20k completely new words (new chapters) not including rewrites to existing chapters. The novel clocked in at roughly 79k words. The previous draft was 77k words.

Next up is line edits and that’s where I get to play! Then I should be ready to share it with beta readers. But first up is a short break. We’ll resume shortly after this commercial interruption.

Living:

I’ve got a weird confession to make that I feel rather awkward about: I enjoy going to the gym. WHO IS THIS PERSON?

When I discovered that my lack of energy was due to anemia, it all got a whole lot easier. Time on the elliptical doesn’t leave me foggy headed all day. I can enjoy listening to my smutty podcasts and music. For a little while I don’t have to be mom, or worry about deadlines, or juggling two careers. I can just be.

And post pregnancy, then post miscarriage, it felt like this one small thing I could do to take back control of my life and my body. It often felt like this body was not my own anymore — one that had rebelled against me. My body may not have changed much outwardly, but my feelings about it have. I can lift that weight. I can go a little further than I did before. And little by little, I’ve been feeling stronger in more ways than one.

Reading:

  • The Poet X by Elizabeth Avacedo (YA)
  • Amal Unbound by Aisha Saeed (MG)
  • Vicious by V.E. Schwab
  • The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan (YA)
  • Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young (YA)
  • Witchmark by C.L. Polk
  • The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw (YA)

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Journal

Writing:

This revision is going surprisingly well. I’m at the point where I know exactly what I want this story to do and how to get there, so this time around I’m enjoying the scene craft. Some people like to polish as they go, but I like to work in layers from the big picture down to the details. I find that  a lot of the world building and character details come in while I take breaks between drafts.

Also, I wrote about my experiences as a writer of colour for the POC in Publishing mailing list. You can check out the October newsletter here.

Living:

Oh Jenny Han and “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before”, thanks to you I’m having a crisis. You reminded me that how we see ourselves is not always how the world sees us.

I mostly live in my head. I’m in the worlds I’m creating or the work that I’m doing. It always surprise me when the world intrudes, and it means I’m also a walking disaster. I break things, and when people I know suddenly say hello, I’m often too surprised to do anything but squeak and turn away, embarrassed.

I was also a painfully shy child, and all my life I assumed that I was invisible. Somehow when I became ‘not so shy’ the second part never really left me. It’s often easier to feel invisible, because then I don’t feel cripplingly self-conscious. If I were invisible, I could act any way I pleased. Anonymity offers a strange kind of confidence.

But the truth is, I’m not as invisible as I always thought. I get so lost in my own head that sometimes I’m the one guilty of not paying enough attention. I have some amends to make.

Reading:

  • The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager
  • The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
  • I Believe in a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo (YA)
  • Hollywood Homicide by Kellye Garrett
  • Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo  (YA)
  • Hero by Samantha Young
  • Monstress Volume 3 by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda (Graphic Novel)

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