Journal

Feb 2019

Writing Update:

AHHH I finally finished the latest draft of the gothic novel, and now it’s time to have my first readers have a go at it. I’m so nervous, because this book has taken so much more work than I ever anticipated. It was supposed to be a quick adventure romp, but turned into something else completely. I guess I’ll see what the reaction is?

The word count is up to 80k words, which is a creep upwards of about 3k words, despite having cut an entire chapter.

On My Mind Lately:

It’s well into the new year and time to shake up my routines.

This year I’m trying to track my reading a little better. I set up a spreadsheet to break down my reading list by genre, publication date, and jot down some quick thoughts. I might start a quarterly favorite reads blog post and I’m toying with some new graphical headers for this site. The latter is one deep rabbit hole to fall down, and someone please call an intervention if I start fiddling with my blog template again.

I have been itching to make things, because I’ve been stuck in my head edit mode for so long. I need to get back to creating for my own enjoyment alone without any stakes involved between drafts. Having something physical to hold instead of an electronic file is so satisfying.

And then there’s spring cleaning. I’m into my 3rd year of doing a konmari on my house. The first year was the hardest, but now it’s enjoyable. Gone are those pre-pregnancy clothes that no longer (wishfully) fit, and out are the shoes that pinch my toes. Most of what I own either makes me feel great or feel cozy. Our house doesn’t have a lot of closet or storage space, so this helps keep things manageable.

Lastly in the realm of setting good habits, my goal is to try to keep off social media in the mornings and substitute reaching for my phone in the evenings with my e-reader. I fail some days, but on the days I manage this I feel so much better. Writing in the morning also means that I’m in a good head space for it all day and get more done overall.

Are you trying to set any new habits this year?

Things I Enjoyed:

GET TO WORK HURLEY. Episode 12 ~ All of Hurley’s writing business podcasts are great, but this one resonated particularly well. It’s all about how narrative shapes the world, ourselves, and our futures. Why blog? Why write? What does it matter?

2018 Locus Recommended Reading ~ A really good list, if you’re looking for book recs! It includes many of my favorites from last year.

6 Comments

Journal

Writing:

This year was all about revisions. I’ve definitely felt the level-up speed bump. Well, more like a wall? Revisions on the Gothic novel have been as pleasant as pulling teeth: knowing I’m not quite there, but almost, but not knowing what “there” means.

I took the last week off (the child was sick so everyone was exhausted), and you know, I think it’s just what I needed. I’ve got an idea that won’t let go. Unfortunately this idea means that I’m going to have to start over with this round of revisions. So it goes! I believe it’s worth it.

Living:

I don’t know what to say about 2018, except that it felt like forever, and I felt nearly every possible emotion. I’m glad to put it behind me, but I’m taking a few lessons out of it too…

  1. It only takes one yes.
  2. Writing gets harder the more you know, not easier. The frustration means you have gotten better not worse.
  3. People do change. Sometimes for the better, sometimes not. You can’t predict it, and neither is it your fault.
  4. People will get used to you wearing bold lipstick.
  5. Every story takes it’s own time. You can’t force a breakthrough. You just need to trust that you will figure it out someday. Sometimes that means setting a story aside for weeks, days, years.
  6. There’s always more work if you’re looking for it. The hard part is making time for everything else.
  7. Happiness is something you have to keep fighting for, even if it means doing one small thing every day that makes you smile.
  8. Sometimes being brave feels an awful lot like being afraid all the time.

May your 2019 be better than the last year. To more adventures! I can’t wait to see what good things happen for you all 🙂

Recommending:

Four Days Trapped at Sea with Crypto’s Noveau Rich by Laurie Penny – Even if you aren’t into tech, read it for the writing alone. It’s simultaneously brilliant, funny, and horrifying.

Reading:

  • Blanca & Roja by Anna-Marie McLemore (YA)
  • Flirting with Disaster by Victoria Dahl
  • The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert (YA)
  • The Cruel Prince by Holly Black (YA)
  • From Twinkle with Love by Sandhya Menon (YA)
  • Royals by Rachel Hawkins (YA)
  • Roomies & The Proposal by Christina Lauren
  • Geekerella by Ashley Poston (YA)
  • City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab (MG)
  • A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev
  • A Change of Heart by Sonali Dev

4 Comments