Week in Review – 2013/08/05 – 2013/08/11

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WRITING:

I’m digging the POV shift experiment for Aaralyn’s Song, so far. It’s added new depth and helped me view certain scenes differently. It’s also allowed me to get to discover new facets to my characters. Spiffy progress there. That’s good news for AugNoWriMo and for my WIP, as a whole. I hadn’t planned on working on my WIP this weekend, as part of my recharging mode. However, I’m revved up to write because of these new angles to tackle. Love it.

READING:

I read some interesting entries for the 21st Annual Heart of the West Writers Contest sponsored by the Utah Chapter of Romance Writers of America.

This week I’m continuing K.M. Weiland‘s forthcoming Structuring Your NovelI have WIP excerpts from fellow SCBWI critique group members to work through as well. I like the discovery of other forthcoming awesomeness to this great industry.

NETWORKING:

Tomorrow, #wipmadness check-ins continue on Candilynn Fite’s blog. More #ROW80 check-ins, updates at Ali Luke’s Writers’ Huddle, and SavvyAuthors. Lots of accountability.

I’ve enjoyed blog hopping and visiting various writing sites for my WIP’s research. I’m quickly building a great line up for my FRIDAY FORAGE series.

LEARNING:

One of my favorite writing places, SavvyAuthors, is undergoing some renovations with their new site. As such, I wasn’t able to register for two classes that began this past Monday. While I was intrigued by the subject matter, I think it was a blessing in disguise because it forced me to go to the resources I already have–as I should have done before finding myself intrigued by these new ones!–and I’ve found gold. Better yet, I’m saving money. It’s become a habit to check for new classes and workshops every week.

New Memo to Self: Stop it! Stop. It. Pretty please, stop it!

Repeat Memo to Self: USE RESOURCES YOU ALREADY HAVE!

The good news: Some courses had new classes that posted once a week. Now with some fully available or at least a few months in, I have the option of marathoning lessons or going to the topics pertinent to my WIP. Awesometastic.

I also have some calluses that need tending to. Guitar lessons this afternoon. Sweet.

Ain’t it great that I’m learning my lesson by learning my lessons? 😉

Bring it on, August! I’m ready for ya.

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#ROW80 Mid-Week Check-In 2013/08/07

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WRITING:

AugNoWriMo is going well and I’m in the midst of some interesting POV experimentation for my WIP. This week, I’ve combed through various articles about the pros and cons of Multiple POVs. Some even mix up present and past tense, while others switch up from 1st person to 3rd. One thing that is a common theme with this methodology is you should do what’s right for the story. If it works, it works. There aren’t any ironclad rules on writing, as we all know. Part of the fun on this writing journey is when we get the chance to play with words.

READING:

I’ve read two out of the four contest pieces for the 21st Annual Heart of the West Writers Contest sponsored by the Utah Chapter of Romance Writers of America. It’s interesting to see techniques I’ve learned via workshops as well as those that require more refinement. I’m hoping to finish the rest in the next couple of days.

Next up on the reading list, my continuation of K.M. Weiland‘s forthcoming Structuring Your NovelI also have WIP excerpts to go through from my SCBWI critique group.

NETWORKING:

Had our first check-in for #wipmadness on Candilynn Fite’s blog. It’s nice to know everyone’s in agreement that we need to honor our minds and bodies while on our writing journey.

The #ROW80 check-ins twice a week, along with other writing communities such as Ali Luke‘s Writers’ Huddle, and SavvyAuthors, are going well, too. I had a chance to pop in on Holly Lisle‘s Forums, as well. All good stuff happening in the writing community.

LEARNING:

Tonette, meet Udemy. Udemy, meet Tonette. You’ve circled each other for too long. Now, it’s time to boogie.

And boogie, I have. Well, not really. I’m not taking dance classes through the website, but I’m sure there’s a course out there. This week I dove in the following courses (from the many free and paid sitting in my account):

Young Adult Novel Writing Workshop

I resisted temptation and did exactly as promised by looking at what I’ve had all along before registering for new workshops. Interesting sessions, so far.

Pain Free at Work

This was a perfect course to get because of the long hours sitting at a computer. I recommend this for anyone who sits for extended periods of time throughout the day. Your body will thank you.

Learn Guitar in 21 Days

That last one is more of a self-imposed accelerated course. Since I only have access to my sister’s guitar on the weekends, I did the first week’s worth of classes over the holiday weekend. My calluses are developing nicely. 🙂 The first few lessons are a refresher from my basic level guitar playing days many moons ago. Still, it’s nice to do something creative outside of writing to keep things interesting.

I have a bunch of recorded webinars and ebooks I bought at the Writer’s Digest Shop. They’re next on my ‘To Sort and Review’ list. Not to mention all the great content in the magazine subscription.

We’re a week into the month of August. How goes it for you?

#ROW80 Mid-Week Check-In 2013/07/17

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WRITING:

Camp NaNoWriMo and JulNoWriMoTweeting updates with @JulNoWriMo and #CampNaNoWriMo. Every Friday until September 21st, I’ll be writing update posts for WRITE YOUR NOVEL THIS SUMMER.

Fractured Tales Series Word Running Total for July: 46,695 words

Totals from April, June, and July: 210,554 words

I’m getting my butt kicked in one of my workshops and I mean this in the nicest way possible. I’d rather suck it up now and work out all the kinks, plot holes, chasms–toMAYto, toMAHto–in my WIP rather than after a year of slogging away at a series that won’t quit and won’t stop branching out in subplots. I’m not saying subplots are a bad thing. They’re great. But imagine your favorite tree. You go and visit it at the park. One day, you see the branches are taking everything over, it’s stifling, there’s no other room to grow. Worse yet, the roots are coming up through the grass, snaking their way in all directions. The tree trunk? That used to be my plot line. My current WIP predicament? The attack of the killer tree. It’s a B-movie with a horrible ending. Don’t watch it. I won’t.

So, back to the butt-kicking. I’m still working on the Series, of course. But rather than intermittent ‘fixes’ akin to a cork in an active volcano, I’m going back to the basics. Remember how I said I used to be on the fence between plotting and pantsing? Well, this mess has compelled me to get off the fence and head back over to Plotville. I gave in to too much flexibility when it came to those “what if” questions and what began as a simple hero’s journey mutated into a foxtrot quickstep square dance limbo with two left feet. Ya feel me?

I’ll get it sorted. I have some challenges that extend through August to give me the rest of the summer to get back on track. And back on track I shall be or I’ll end up running out of horrid clichés to blog!

READING:

In other news…

Here’s what I read this week:

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Currently reading and on deck:

lovestargirl     FLIPPED 331920     THE SUPERNATURALIST 45432     WIRED FOR STORY 13126099

Okay, I know not all the books here are from my last post. Due to recent events of aforementioned flogging and restrategizing–if it’s not a real word, I’m making it one–my WIP, I found I couldn’t get through reading a fairytale inspired story anymore. Until I’m out of my plotting fog, I’m steering clear of fairytale inspired tales.

The only reason I jumped onto Spinelli’s sequel was because I was moved by the first story, had the second one already and wanted to dive in while the characters were fresh in my mind. It’s told from a different POV and in a different format, but I’m quite enjoying it. Also, I’m enjoying MG/YA fiction, probably because they’re among my favorite reads. No worries. My ever expanding TBR list has a wide variety, but I think I’d like to start here and work my way to the grittier stuff later.

At least I can continue my nourishment through reading while enjoying other genres, as well. The diverse writing styles and voices are inspiring and giving me just the right amount of motivation to stop beating myself up over minor setbacks. 🙂

Total books read since June 23rd:

Fiction: 8

Non-Fiction: 3

SOCIAL MEDIA-ING ;) (formerly known as BLOGGING):

Check-ins on Angelina C. Hansen’s blog for #wipmadness are every Monday In July. Some of my fellow WIPsters are going through rough patches, while others are hanging from rafters with glee. We’re all in it together and I love it. Two Sunday #ROW80 check-ins and three Mid-Week Check-Ins.

I was hoping that FRIDAY FORAGE would be shorter than last week, but my inner monologue demands to be heard. Fingers and toes crossed, it will be shining, shimmering, and splendid.

OTHERS:

Oh, dear, sweet, neglected Duolingo. Does it count that the senior member of The Keysmashing Tots knows the word ‘stars’ in both English and Spanish already? Again, thanks to Dora and Diego. To his credit, children are known to have a knack for languages at a young age. I’d love to be a linguistic sponge. I’ll keep at it. I don’t think it’s too late. Of course, now I’m picturing SpongeBob. Great. :-/

Oh, and that thing I mentioned about Stella, last time? Erm, is there a movie entitled ‘Stella May Have Gotten In Over Her Head’ or the sister movie ‘Stella Jumped the Gun’. Grrr, plot holes. I’ll fill you yet.

And how are you on this fine, sweltering hump day?

#ROW80 Mid-Week Check-In 2013/07/10

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WRITING:

Camp NaNoWriMo and JulNoWriMoTweeting updates with @JulNoWriMo and #CampNaNoWriMo. Every Friday until September 21st, I’ll be writing update blog posts for WRITE YOUR NOVEL THIS SUMMER.

Fractured Tales Series Word Running Total for July: 28,329 words

Totals from April, June, and July: 192,148 words

Tried different POVs this past week. Might continue this way because the story is too grand to have my protagonist in every scene. Also, I’m sure I’m not the only writer who’s had a ‘middle of the night’ epiphany linking events from Book 1 to events in Book 3 (which is but a twinkle in my eye, at the moment… twinkle and brief outlines).

READING:

Loving my reading revival. Here’s what I read this week:

20120201-book-storytellers-daughter     483445

Currently reading:

20120201-book-beauty-sleep     76171     22232

I just realized how disparate these titles are. LOL

Total books read since June 23rd:

Fiction: 7

Non-Fiction: 3

SOCIAL MEDIA-ING 😉 (formerly known as BLOGGING):

Check-ins on Angelina C. Hansen’s blog for #wipmadness are every Monday In July. One Sunday #ROW80 check-in and two Mid-Week Check-Ins.

Friday, I’ll continue my new column FRIDAY FORAGE and will go through my third week of summer writing updates.

After attending an Author Chat at Savvy Authors, I learned many new things that will go towards mending my love-hate relationship with Facebook and how to best forge a relationship with readers out there. Author C.J. Ellisson was faboo–people still say that right?–and is hosting Reader Clubs. I joined her event for July and it’s coming up on July 24, 2013. I suppose I should have mentioned this in the Reading section above but it’s social media related as I’m linking to the impending awesomeness over at Facebook.

These are writing related but also part of my edification as a writer. Aside from my continuous workshops–super helpful when I get the chance to work on assignments–I also joined Ali Luke’s Writers’ Huddle and am cozying up in Holly Lisle’s Forums for that added oomph, support, and accountability. They join Joe Bunting’s Story Cartel Course and Dr. John Yeoman’s Writers’ Village. I’m in good company.

OTHERS:

In the words of Grantaire, “I am agog. I am aghast.” Okay, so here’s the deal, Duolingo. I’m not mad at you. I’m not ignoring you. Promise. When my brain’s more sorted with my Fractured Tales Series and all the words of other fine authors that I’ve been absorbing, you and I will have words. And hopefully in Spanish.

Week two of July is almost up and I’m getting into the summer writing groove. Whatever ailed the household is almost gone. In fact, I’m more than ready to kick it to the curb already. Press on, I must.

And how are you today?

Week in Review – 2013/07/01 – 2013/07/07

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WRITING:

Camp NaNoWriMo and JulNoWriMoTweeting updates with @JulNoWriMo and #CampNaNoWriMo. Every Friday until September 21st, I’ll be writing update posts for WRITE YOUR NOVEL THIS SUMMER.

Fractured Tales Series Word Running Total for July: 20,129 words

Totals from April, June, and July: 191,345 words

Some twists and turns this week and that’s just because the household came down with an onslaught of sniffles, fever, and coughs. Tissues a-plenty along with ACHOOS and I CAN’T TAKE THIS ANY LONGER, I still managed to get some interesting scenes written. Made discovers along the way and caught myself saying, “I didn’t think she had that in her!” a few times. That’s always a good thing when it comes to plot development. 🙂

 

READING:

More great books read. Here’s what I read this week, including me rounding out Lois Lowry’s THE GIVER QUARTET. Awesome stuff:

LoisLowry_GatheringBlue     books_messenger[1]     20121017_072140_son     16248113     22628

 

Currently reading:

106489     483445

Threw in some more non-fiction in there because, hey, why not? If you have any stories you’d like to recommend, please comment below. I’ve enjoyed the reads so far. It’s probably the highlight of my blerg days when I just didn’t want to do anything productive. Reading is awesometastic.

 

BLOGGING:

Will check in at Angelina C. Hansen’s blog tomorrow for #wipmadness. This is the first Sunday Check-In and we’ve had one Mid-Week Check-In, as well. I like hearing what other writers are doing this month.

Friday, I’ll continue my new column FRIDAY FORAGE and will go through my third week of summer writing updates.

 

How goes it in your neck of the woods?