“I write to give myself strength. I write to be the characters that I am not. I write to explore all the things that I’m afraid of.”— Joss Whedon
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“I write to give myself strength. I write to be the characters that I am not. I write to explore all the things that I’m afraid of.”— Joss Whedon
Subscribe below to get notified when I post new updates!
This staying at home deal has worked out well for me. I wake up. I workout. I eat healthier. I am absolutely writing more. I have been dabbling with my art again. Best of all I have purged so much crap from my personal space. I have not had time to do so in about a year, and wow there were just things that definitely needed to go.
I found broken frames, I found piles of papers that I just didn’t take the minute or two to sort, and I found precious drawings from my nieces and nephews.
I have cleared out a few garbage bags now. My next mountain to tackle however will be the clothes. I have a lot. I know going through them is about to be a marathon of its own. Yet, I will do it. I will crush this organizational goal. I will have an insane amount of clothes to donate by the time I am done, but I am one hundred percent okay with it.
Creatively I have been trying all my favorite ways to thrive. I write for my novels, I write just to journal and let my brain just flow onto paper, I am starting to work on this blog again and doing prompt of the day, and I am working on my sketches again (the just for me art book and the character sketches I have so that I can describe them properly and not mix things up).
When it comes to keeping my brain going I love tapping into the creativity, but I also like to work with puzzles. I love them I could do them all day. I also have fill-in crosswords. I am nearing the end of that book and need to dig up my other one. I do sudoku. I have games on my phone and tablet to tap into the quick thinking statistical portion of my brain.
Homework helps with that also.
Physically it is back to basics mixed with physical therapy. I do a short walk here and there around my subdivision, while keeping my distance from others of course. I have started to do light yoga again, which helps with my body and mind. Just keep moving everyone!
I like DIY stuff and haven’t had the time to do it so I am hoping not to create an insane mess, but we will see. I just won’t use glitter. I think that’s the key. Right?
Stay busy. Stay safe. Stay healthy.
The day was scorching hot and bone dry, the air smelled like burnt toast, and everyone’s nerves were on edge. Only Zachariah was calm. He patrolled the perimeter, making jokes about the Eastlanders finding us out here in the tall grass hiding in our small camp. He always tried to make light of the situation we were thrown into. Nothing was ever completely serious unless it personally effected the outcome of his life. He is amazing in a fight. He can swing a sword quicker than another human can see. He is quick and dead on with aiming arrows and bullets. Everyone else, they don’t see all the hidden pieces of who he is. They didn’t see him at his lowest and alone like I did.
“You know if the Eastlanders find us it will be because you can’t stop talking.” I let my hand rest on the knife at my hip. He smirks and his blue eyes are full of mischief.
“We have our way out. Just need to run now.” I remember the first time he brought up leaving. He wanted to just disappear, but he couldn’t do it alone. He couldn’t be alone anymore. So, he just decided putting up with my life and the people around me as an easy answer.
“Can’t. I got family here.” He let out a scoff and walked on.
“You know they have attracted more trouble for us than we would have found out there.”
“You mean outside of you fighting for money and slipping out on the last fight. Us needing to run for it from the collectors. How about when you ended up having to save my ass in that bar?” I laughed remembering how much trouble we pulled in on our own.
“Well there’s more here than there was out there. We haven’t been able to catch a break.” I stopped him by grabbing a hold of his left arm at the crook and pulled him to a standstill facing me.
“We won’t catch a break. Not now. Not with the Eastlanders out to kill us all.” He put a hand lightly on my cheek before letting it fall to my shoulder. “One day it’ll all be over and we can run to a farm in the middle of nowhere and live off the land around us with nobody coming on our land.” I moved my hand to his face and he leaned in resting our foreheads against one another.
What felt like the perfect moment was interrupted by a bullet whizzing past my head and into the tree just mere feet behind me. We dropped down below the grass and waited for whoever it was to pop back up. An arrow came from the other direction grazing my shoulder. I tried not to make any noise or react at the shallow cut. I turned back and Zachariah was gone. I felt panic rising in my chest and rolled out the other way. I heard swords clashing behind the tree line and dodged an arrow from in front of it. I ducked behind a tree and dropped. I rolled under a brush and popped up on the other side of the shooters aim. I slid from tree to tree as silent as possible until I was right behind the man. I moved quickly as I slit his throat and dropped him. A woman came running at me with a sword and I pulled my knife out throwing it square in her chest. I heard a gun fire off. I didn’t hear any movement after. I froze.
“I think we got em all.” I turned quickly ready to throw a punch when Zachariah put both hands up in the air. “Woah! I surrender.” His sword was still wet and dripping blood.
“They found us.”
“Clearly. Come on we need to get everyone ready to go.” I nodded and followed him back to the camp. Everyone argued and picked sides Zachariah or Joe on if he should have been brought back to the group or not. He was a dangerous criminal. That is all they knew.
“And if he wouldn’t have saved me I wouldn’t be here.” My family grew silent. “Still want to argue or can we get the hell out of here?” The next two hours was silent except for feet shifting gravel. I stayed near the rear of the group watching Zachariah and Joe go back to the normal semi-friendly routine from their past. Zachariah looked back and I gave a false smile wondering if we would all be dead if we were separate two months ago.
Would I have survived the bar? Would I have come back to save my uncle? Would I have stood up for Zachariah or would I still be trying to hunt him down and kill him for past sins? What if?
The past few months have been a whirlwind of confusion, stress, anger, pain, and a reset. After the car accident I was in I wasn’t quite sure how to sit here and write. I had a lot to say, but I wasn’t sure how to say it. My mind was a big mess. My memory wasn’t in top form. Everything was spiraling out of my grip.
Physically I wasn’t doing one hundred percent either. I needed to start getting everything straight before I tried to find that new normal for moving and doing everything. I am lucky. I didn’t need surgery. I did need and am still working through a lot of physical therapy. However, I will do what needs to be done to find myself again.
I let myself get lost for a while. My anxiety took over. I didn’t want to see anyone or go anywhere. I didn’t want to do anything. But I had to keep going. I had to push through all of those crappy feelings. I needed to find my balance. I needed to find myself.
After all of that fighting to get back to a relatively normal place I went back to work part time, I finished another semester in school, and I wrote a chunk of my novel for the first time since December. If it wasn’t for school I would have probably completely lost it. (The last class ends in October and I wasn’t stopping classes if I could help it.)
I struggled with sharing everything. I wanted to put everything out there in the open about what was going on. I couldn’t find the words. I couldn’t write them down. I wanted to write anything that wasn’t just for school.
I feel a weight lifting as I type this out and start being a little more open, a little more honest, and a little more me.
I plan to write something every day to get back into the flow of things; blog post, short story, or just a prompt of the day. I want to get back to doing what I love and I want to move forward with my life. I don’t want to keep pushing it aside and telling myself, “Maybe tomorrow.”
I am going to use this time in the house to read as many books as possible, do a bunch of puzzles, and exercise as many creative muscles as I can.
As always thank you for taking the time to read my blog.
On December 26, 2019 I was involved in a car accident. I am not going to dwell on the details or go too in depth. I have been sitting and reflecting a lot. I have not been able to sit on my computer and write outside of my school work this past month, I have not been able to read at my normal pace of a book a day or two to three a week, and I have been dealing with constant frustrations of all the other issues caused by the accident.
To put it simply I have felt very lost and very much alone. (Even with my amazing family and friends being present and supportive.)
That being said, I want to focus on the writing part in all this. I have always looked at writing as a way for me to just speak my mind and tell stories, but after everything that I have felt and been dealing with I realized something important. For me writing is an extension of who I am. It isn’t just this thing I can do or enjoy doing. It is a part of me. I wasn’t able to really do that for an entire month and that alone made me feel so completely broken. I was so lost without knowing how to express myself and let that part of me be free. It has been emotionally draining working through everything and my main outlet has been on standby.
I still can’t sit on the computer, read, or write for too long in one shot, but I am so blessed that I can do it for as long as I can in this moment.
My school is amazing and understanding with everything. I am using my school time to work back up to the standards I set for myself. I don’t push it too hard. If things start acting up I stop and let my brain rest before going again. If it wasn’t for school I think I would still be struggling as bad as I was a few weeks ago. So, thank you to Southern New Hampshire University.
I will work back up to being able to write and read all day every single day no matter what it takes, but I am not the most patient of people. Really. I could pretend to be patient on the outside, but everyone around me knows. I am not one to wait for something to happen. I am one to make it happen, but I am following all of the instructions from my doctors and intend to get back to normal or even surpass the old normal. That is how important this is to me.
I am going to let myself heal and grow from this experience. I can only hope that the growth will be beautiful in the end.
Thank you for those who follow me and are still with me on this journey. Thank you to those who are just reading my words now.
I wrote a prompt yesterday that sparked a short story. Well that short story has consumed my time today and has blown up into something other than a short story. I had no idea what type of thing I was walking into with this.
This has turned into an entire story set all of its own. I am excited as always to find a new love within my pieces, but I am also realizing how much I story jump. These prompts are amazing and sparking so many different pieces of my creativity. I will share a short story in the next day or two, but this was the highlight of my week.
The story is adding to my work load, but that only builds my excitement and lets me know I am going down the right path with following my dreams and finishing up school. I can handle all the work in the world if it means sharing it with everyone when it is finally finished.
I did work on my original series for a while today, but I needed to get this story bug sprawled out and written down on paper. The amount done was less than I thought I would do today, but it was still worth every page that got finished.
The darkness was thick and suffocating, like a heavy blanket had been thrown on the world. He had to get over the wall, had to get across the border before the soldiers of Fen caught up with us. We waited until finally we saw a hand come over. The city which had held them all as prisoners would soon be in their past. Then the snarls started creeping in. I felt pure panic course through every vein, into every finger and every toe, and even the ends of my hair seemed to curl slightly in anticipation.
The bright neon blues, greens, yellows, oranges, and pinks of the eyes around me stood out in the night. The fog lifted from the ground and I let my eyes focus in and all I could see was the night vision version of life around us. His upper body was over the wall and he was ready to flip himself over. We didn’t want to leave without him but if we needed to we would. The skitch were devilish creatures that were hard enough to fight at full magi strength, but at the half strength we would all surely perish.
He was almost down when the skitch started slamming themselves against the wall to get out. I grabbed the hand of the youngling next to me and started pulling her back across the field. The sound of soldier feet pounded their way out. I felt myself ready to open a portal, but knew I only had one shot. The little youngling tugged on my hand and closed her two hands around my one. Her beautiful pink eyes closed and a bright white light radiated and she opened a beautiful portal. She was channeling me. I smiled and put my head to hers letting the magic flow between us.
The other magi began rushing through and we waited as long as we could, but Rafit was still limping behind. The wall gave and the skitch were being followed by the soldiers of Fen. I picked up the youngling and rushed through holding her head to my chest so she wouldn’t see our old bunkmate torn to shreds as the portal closed. I noticed a skitch that was too close to the portal and I got it closed as the arm came through. The portal took that piece of it and I through myself and the youngling back to save her from being cut and poisoned.
“Ashe, your holding me to tight.” I loosened my hold and kissed her genius forehead. The elder helped me up and looked around trying to get our bearings and find a way to move forward.
“Aslaya. We are in Aslaya.” The older man looked back to me and nodded.
“Welcome home. Aliyara. The only living heir to the Aslayan throne.” The others picked up on his words and began to kneel. I put my hand out to stop them, but they still knelt.
“There is no throne here.” I looked around at the destruction and the buildings run over by the earth. “Not anymore.”
“While you live, there is a throne.” He moved forward and a light was glowing above my head. “And you need to take it before the soldiers of Fen come for us all.” I looked him in the eyes as a weight fell slowly upon my head.
Until that day, fear had been an idea, a concept. Now it was real: a feeling I would carry inside me for the rest of my life. The day began innocently enough, with a nice breakfast on the porch watching the rain fall over the land my family had owned. The smell of fresh rain drifted past me on the breeze bringing happy memories from my childhood. It wasn’t until I saw the shadow standing on the edge of the forest that everything would shift.
I waited until he walked further in and I let my legs carry me behind. I watched him intently with my gut screaming at me that this would be a bad idea. He seemed to glance back at me and gave a small nod. The next thing I knew he put his hand on the tree and seemed to be sucked in. I ran up to it and walked around the large trunk multiple times before I leaned on it as well.
The next thing I knew I was face down in the dirt with the sun beaming down on my back. It felt hotter than usual and something about the air seemed off. I looked up and found a barren field that stretched as far as I could see. Nothing was familiar. Nothing was real. The sky was purple. I filled with pure panic and went to touch the tree again trying to go back. It was gone. There was nothing there. Just more field.
I was alone in a different world? This couldn’t be real. I pinched myself. I almost gave myself a Charlie horse trying to wake myself up.
“Everything is real love.” I stilled and looked up from my probably bruised leg. The shadow man was so dark. His hair, his clothes, his eyes all looked black as night. He wasn’t real. He could tell me he was yet I didn’t know if I would ever believe him.
“It can’t be.” He smirked and a hand that moved as if in smoke brushed lightly across my cheek sending shivers straight down my spine.
“It is. If you aren’t ready I am going to need you to leave.” His whole body was mere centimeters from mine and he looked straight through me. “I’ll be back for you.” He gave me a shove and I was back on the forest floor looking up at the night sky.
“Where are you?” Flashlights went dancing back and forth between the trees and I was registering my cousin’s voices.
“Here.” It came out stronger than I thought. After a few minutes everyone was surrounding me asking a million questions that I couldn’t make out. “How long was I gone?”
I have been keeping up with everything for the most part and I feel so good writing every day! Even if it has been just a little bit the last two days. I got hit with the flu and it wasn’t easy to keep up with my reading, but I got myself back on track with that.
I have stuck to my writing goals so far and even surprised myself with what I was willing to do to hit them. I found this determination and drive within myself the past week that I think was just waiting to be tapped into again. I have hit my goals where school is concerned and will continue to, but I want to carry this drive into the next semester. I think that will be my goal when these three personal challenge weeks are done.
Putting my writing first and my happiness as a priority is the best goal and challenge I could have done for myself this year.
If anyone has any goals for the future or goals that they have crushed this year and they would like to share I would love to hear them! I would love to celebrate those goals with you all! Even if you don’t feel like sharing I hope you still celebrate them! We all deserve to celebrate the successes in our lives no matter how big or how small!
“How did you know?” I asked, not sure I wanted the answer. I thought I had been careful. I thought no one would ever figure out it had been missing. I had been sure to measure it all out and put back the replica in the exact place. No one had been in or out while I was making the copy.
“For starters that box is an heirloom. I stare at it every day. I notice when there is a new chip on it.” I turned to try and assess what chip she was mentioning. “I also deal with computer programming consistently. I can tell when something isn’t my original drive.” Ali sat down in the large office chair and her deep brown eyes bore into my bright blue-gray ones. I felt as if she was trying to read my mind.
“I don’t know what you mean.” I leaned back against the old wooden bookshelves.
“The file. I need it back.” She straightened slightly as I let out a low whistle of air.
“See. I would if I knew what you were talking about.”
“Do not play stupid with me Naomi.” I felt a cat like grin grace my features.
“I’m not that good of an actor Ali. If something were missing one should head down to the Browning Facility and speak with Trevor Browning.” Ali slumped.
“Why?” She looked defeated.
“The boss pays well.” I went to walk out of the room and swiped the letter opener off the desk corner. I took a few steps to the door before she cleared her throat.
“Put it back.” I spun and let my arm feel the natural movements as it went hurtling back at her. The letter opener went into the chair almost an inch from her face. She gasped and when she went to look at the old gold piece I made a quick and cat like exit.
We took turns guarding the door, neither of us sleeping very much. Ricky looked nervous, and suddenly I felt bad about getting him involved. I shouldn’t have told him who I really am. I shouldn’t have told him anything that put him here in this place with me running and hiding just to stay alive. He deserves so much more than this life.
Yet here we are a week later and the silence and mere mumbles are all I can get out of him. I just wanted something normal. Anyone else would have yelled. They would have thrown things or left me on my own to suffer and turned me in. For some reason he wasn’t ready to give up and go.
“I think I saw a vending machine at the end of the hall. Do you want something?” He moved off the queen bed opposite mine and stood tall. He turned his back to me and slid his leather jacket on before walking out the door. “I can go you don’t have to.”
“I don’t want anything from the vending machine.” He took a few large steps to the door and gripped the handle. “I’ll be back.” Fear ripped through me. This was it. He was done running. He was going to do it. He was going to turn me in. I couldn’t blame him for it. I deserved to be locked up. All I wanted was to be free and after fighting for it and doing what I had to do I was going to go back and get what I deserved.
“Oh, okay.” He let the door slam shut and I jumped at the sound. I scurried to pack my things and dug around the room for a small scrap of paper. This old dingy motel was not keeping up with supplies. When I found the paper I wasn’t sure what I would write, but I knew it had to be the truth. He deserved that much.
I knew the second I met you that your kindness was genuine. I knew that you meant every single word you said, but I took advantage of that. For months you helped me find a job, kept a roof over my head, made sure I was happy, and you protected me. When I finally told you who I was I knew it was a clear betrayal. You deserved so much more than that. You deserved to know from the start. I lied and for that I am sorry. Thank you for everything you have done for me, but I understand why you needed to tell the truth. Your future is more important than mine. I hope you find solace in the fact that you gave me a normal life for a while.
I had to run before anything else could be put on him. One day if everything worked out and I could truly be free maybe we would find each other again. I looked back at the note on the bed and then felt the weight land back on my shoulders as I walked out. I moved silently into the tree line and watched. It was risky to stay that long, but I needed to know if he was truly done.
After an hour or so he came back and went up to the room. I watched him read it and instead of seeing a swarm of officers I saw him drop to the bed and put his head in his hands. I wanted to go back more than I wanted to worry about my future, but the only way for me to be free was to finish the job I had started. On my own. As he made his way back out to the lot and started looking around I eased back into the woods further out of sight. There wasn’t any doubt in me in that moment. It was time to fight for my future.
Perhaps it was a dream, she thought. Perhaps if she pinched herself, she would wake up. But she didn’t want to wake up. She wanted to stay in this dream world where everything seemed to flow continuously with ease. Nothing was ever hard or hurt. Then she began to wonder if feeling the pain elsewhere was holding her back or pushing her forward. Was the pain worth it. Was she really awake now?
Maybe this world could be the real reality and the other world was the nightmare realm. She felt everything spinning around her as she struggled to find her mental footing. She closed her eyes and ran her fingers across the cool metal table she was at. It felt so real that there was no way she could be making this up.
“Is everything okay here miss?” She looked up at a gentleman who could only be described as dapper.
“Yes, sorry do you need the table?” The man’s face broke into a weird smirk that didn’t seem to fit this reality.
“There is no need for you to leave. I was hoping to talk with you about something.” He sat opposite her without an invitation and leaned forward on his elbows. “I want to talk to you about staying.”
“Staying?” She sat back and let the metal help her feel really and truly grounded. “Staying here?” He nodded and looked off for the waitress. When she saw him he held up two fingers and she disappeared further into the coffee house.
“What’s the catch?” The man smiled maliciously.
“You just need to work for me.”
“Doing what?” The man sat back now and watched her every movement.
“I cannot answer that until you agree.” Her lungs felt as if they stopped working.
“I can’t agree to something if I don’t know what it is.” He went to stand and as he straightened out his coat he gave her a quick glance.
“Very well then. I think it is time for you to go.” Her memories in this place seemed to race before her eyes. All of the smiles, all of the ease, all of the happiness she felt.
“WAIT!” The man didn’t even fully turn away or back before she went from a yell to a low and quiet tone, “I’ll do it.”
“Very good.” He held out his hand to shake hers and when their skin touched her whole body felt like it was on fire. She took the wrong deal, and in that moment she knew who he was. The devil. She just made a deal with the devil.
I made it through my toughest semester yet and cannot wait to begin flying through my TBR (to be read) list! I also am ready to take my time off and dedicate it to my writing and my blog! This is the most excited I have been for a holiday break in a long time. I have a bunch of goals I hope to hit in the next few weeks.
I want to read seventeen books in twenty-one days, I want to post eighteen blogs with my prompts of the day, I hope to blog about my journey or just every day things to connect with you all twice a week minimum, and I want to do three short stories as well as working on my novels as much as possible. It sounds like a lot, but I live for the chance to do all of this as much as possible!
I am going to be spending a lot of time on here with everyone and hope to catch up on reading other blogs that I have missed as well! I look forward to connecting with everyone and am excited to crush some goals!
As Thanksgiving week draws to a close and December starts up I have been thinking a lot about what I am truly thankful for.
My family- My insanely large and wonderful family, extended family, and friends that have become family over the years. You are all amazing miraculous human beings. You have been there through so much and continued to push me so far that I don’t know if I would be here or pursuing my dreams without you.
My friends- These people. My people. Simply put I love you crazy wonderful humans. The ones that I wasn’t given or connected to because they are family, but the ones I chose and who chose me. Some of my favorite lovely and beautifully crazy people. Thank you. All of you.
My ability to finish my education- This is something that as I near the finish line I grow more and more thankful for this opportunity. It is something I never thought I would be able to do, but with all of the love and support I am so thankful to know that this education will always be here for me.
My job- It is rare to find a job that you can focus on your future and flourish while still working. I have been blessed with an amazing job working for an amazing family and I am so thankful for them giving me this opportunity. They are amazing people.
My literature teachers- Thank you. Thank every single one of you. Thank you for taking the time to help me grow and keep honing in on my craft. You have all been inspirations to me and have helped me see that this future is possible and it can be beautiful.
Writing- I am thankful to have the opportunity to do what I love. I am thankful that writing has given me this new building block for my life. I am thankful that my passion can become my future. Having this outlet has saved my life. I am thankful for it.
Thank you to anyone who reads this blog! I always want to be open and honest about my life and you all reading this are allowing me to do just that. So, thank you!
This was a little tidbit that has been sitting in my brain for a while. I have been trying to work on a new aspect of my writing with each piece. This time I wanted to focus on the descriptive pieces and making my dialogue stand out. I wanted to find a different kind of balance. It took me a while to have it feel ready to go. I separated out the two focuses for myself which helped me see what works in each and what doesn’t.
It might be a quick story, but I hope you all enjoy!
I will be honest here… I went into the weekend just planning to write a short story for the blog to try and get somewhat on track with my short story a week… instead I had the most magical Saturday. I wrote for about eight and a half hours.
It was the best feeling in the world to just write more of my novel down. I felt so happy and there was this weight that just disappeared. I haven’t felt so happy and so free in a long time.
I know I have gotten to write for school, but writing for school is so much different than writing for myself. I haven’t kept up with the blog as I have hoped to and I am going to try to be better about it. I have some goals in mind that I intend to stick to, but I also need to be more realistic with myself.
School, work, handling a million things, and fitting in writing is harder than I thought. As my brother and many others reminded me something has to give at some point. I am trying to find my balance now more than ever. The way I felt after writing this weekend has only made me more determined to make it work.
This weekend of writing has been one of clarity, happiness, and peace. I couldn’t have asked for a better weekend.
I hated outlining anything for school. I dreaded an outline. It was always so bare and empty to me. (Yes I am aware that is what an outline is.) In school though they had us cut it down to so little I never felt I knew where it was going. It was horrifying and made me hate the entire process. As i would come to learn what works for some does NOT work for others. I was trying to fit in the process that made me feel like i was in an inferno surrounded in nightmares by bad outlines. (It was a rough time…)
I eventually stopped doing outlines for anything. I became a let’s just write it down and see what happens type of person. Editing was then another issue entirely because of my choice in new process. I thought nothing of the fire like pits I would want to throw myself into because of that.
After years of doing that I finished half of a draft for this WIP that I am currently working on. Needless to say I gutted the entire thing and felt lost with it. I knew the story I wanted to tell I was just lost. I went to my outlining roots and felt that it didn’t work for me. I tried all of these worksheets and I got nothing. I tried writing a paragraph at one point for what I wanted each chapter to look like. Everything was rough to get through. (Like paying off all your credit cards to find bills that run them back up and feel like you’re in an endless cycle rough… [seen that more times than I wish I would have])
Finally after two months of no progress (and some really awkward exercises I found for writing on Pinterest) I ordered “Save the Cat! Writes a Novel” I am not one to be astounded at what I learned about my own writing outline style and how I could use the platform to blend with everything else I had tried. That book helped me revamp and rebuild my story into what it is becoming now. It helped me truly find what worked for me! (Life and school would have gone so much smoother had I found my process sooner, but to each their own.)
It might not be to everyone’s taste but it is worth a look through if you feel stuck and can’t move your story forward. I have marks and tabs all through my copy. Some things struck me as things that should be obvious, but I never would have realized it when I was so busy trying to fix something that wasn’t my strong suit to begin with.
After tearing the original draft apart and giving my new bare boned outline an angry toss across the room I used the book to fill in my missing outline pieces. I did a mixture of everything while following the flow of the book to explain it and break it down for me.
I realized that if I as the author couldn’t understand where my story was going or what I was trying to do I wasn’t going to have the best outcome. So, I started on the angry fire pit path, got lost in expectations, and found what worked for me. I want to make sure to repeat myself in saying the same thing dies NOT work for everyone, but I hope every writer and author alike can find their process.
I wish everyone luck on their journey!
I had a lot of fun with this one. I opened to a random page and I just went for it. I think I might have found another story idea to tackle. It might end up being my next short story! I would love to hear what everyone thinks!
I am not going to lie… my current WIP started with a dream. (As most of mine do.) It is one of my favorite pieces i have ever written and can’t wait to share it… Anyway, last night I might have had a serious weird series of dreams that may or may not have been NyQuil and Theraflu induced…
Weird combination let me tell you! I don’t think I recommend it.
Anyway… I was supremely out of it when I woke up at like two this morning. I jumped up grabbed my notebook and wrote a ton of nonsensical sentence fragments. I tried really hard to piece it together and came up with
crap… extremely awkward scenarios. While I truthfully understand that I can easily write awkward scenarios… (I really, really have them down well…) I don’t think some of what I wrote last night pieces together correctly because what in the name of Hades was that.
1. Something about big black dog
2. A giant black puddle (not a lake I specifically wrote puddle)
3. Pink balloon
I mean what does it all mean?!?! I couldn’t even make this a sensible story if I tried. It is absolutely ridiculous. I definitely laughed trying to write a story that fit the four pieces. Then I put the list aside and decided a prompt might be more of an idea source today because I seriously couldn’t understand what 2am NyQuil filled me was trying to say.
I didn’t really have this epiphany about dreams and stories but this made me laugh so much I wanted to share.
There is something beautiful about the flow that goes from hearing a song and transitioning it onto paper with new words and a new story. There is not just one type of music that anyone should listen to when they write. Everything is going to pull a feeling from somewhere.
I have about twenty different playlists saved on Spotify. They are all different types of music and they find different parts of me that sometimes I don’t think I can find otherwise. I hear a song and it ties to memories. Ones that I don’t think about on a daily basis.
Music is simply a different kind of magic.
I always have something on in the background. It is always tied to my mood. (Or the mood I am trying to find myself in).
There is just something that works between music and writing that I haven’t been able to find anywhere else.
My number one thing to tell people who ask me what I need to be doing when I write is not lighting candles (I do this too… but mostly to try to find my writing zen zone), it isn’t sitting alone in a quiet room (I have tried it and let me tell you… I am more annoyed at silence than background noise), it IS to find the write music to match my mood. Matching my music to my mood helps everything just fall out and onto the paper.
What is your favorite music to write to? What playlists do you listen to? I love hearing new stuff and love hearing what inspires others.
I wanted to tell all about how my family was my inspiration. However, while I love them dearly and know they will be reading this, they are not my only inspirations. I have been inspired many ways and by many things in life. They are absolutely one, but again not all credit to them.
I have been inspired by nature. Nature has caught me off guard and sparked an idea many times over. From the colors of fall to thunderstorms with winds that blew so hard the entire house shook. Storms usually invite ideas of fight scenes or emotionally packed arguments. Fall colors tend to bring about this peaceful state for my writing that I feel can be read well from my words. I always try to let sunshine and happiness tie together, but those days where it is just so hot someone cannot breathe tend to show some anxiety. Light rain. Well that just puts me to sleep so I doubt I am up writing if I am being honest.
Little towns. Little towns are the absolute best. Seeing the buildings and watching as a town actually comes alive during a day. It is just a different kind of energy. Older small towns always help me write the feeling of someone coming in to shake things up, and no one likes an outsider pieces… because honestly no one trusts the outsider.
People. Now people are everything. You don’t have to know someone to describe them, to create a backstory, or to build on their conversations. In truth, just so everyone is aware, writers are supremely successful at listening in on other people, (Yes I avoided using eavesdrop) and while they won’t copy word for word it is easy to take a conversation and build on it. We write what we know and when it comes to people it is all about the observation.
To be blunt there are people who were deliberately put into a piece because as writers someone might not inspire the best creatively and they then become the villain. (Going to be honest right here and say I do not feel bad). Some people inspire in the best of fairy godmother type ways with their innate goodness. Those bright eyed humans always help bring the good to a story even if it is just from a casual observation. What we see is what we know.
Other writers and authors. Now here is where I can say openly that everything I have read (The good, the bad, and the ugly) has inspired me in one way or another. Seeing how someone can create their own world/s and build something from nothing other than their own creative mind is inspirational beyond all belief. We have some pretty spectacular pieces out there, but those pieces all came from a string of brilliance in one mind. Most of the time that string of brilliance is not the only one that an author has to give to the audience. That. Is. Magical. I love reading and falling into someone else’s work. It is something that I cannot fully describe, but I am trying. It is like letting your own mind wander on the trip of a life time, and you get to go on a new one with each piece. This right here could be considered the start of a love letter to every author who has inspired me to follow my passion.
Workbooks and prompts. These amazing little things are there to inspire a jumpstart for the mind. I absolutely can fall into another reality when I need to with these. They always give me a creative push when I feel just on the outside. I have a ton of books full of exercises and prompts and I honestly need to start doing them daily. I was for a while, but then things got hectic and I need my healthy writing patterns back.
Self inspiration… Now here is one that is always a little hard for me to tap into. I know I can, but it is hard to bring up certain things that I have gone through. However, an author’s best friend is personal experience. It is everything that we go through pouring out onto the page. It doesn’t have to be exact, but it is sharing a piece of yourself with the audience. It is giving a part of yourself to the world and I don’t think there is anything more beautiful or harder to do than giving that piece to everyone. I have learned that I cannot be afraid to open up and give that piece away.
Friends. The people you choose to be your other family. They are the ones you choose who choose you back. They are extremely important for what you want to build in those who surround your main characters. If they are good show the world some of their goodness. If they are badass don’t be afraid to show it. (Same with family. A badass is a badass and should be congratulated on being so amazingly awesome.) Even the friends who don’t stay friends, the ones who turn around and do something horribly betraying, write them in. Use the experience given from an ex-friend because those people are important characters to have as well.
Of course family is an inspiration. Parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and my cousins (who I am not lacking any numbers in whatsoever) are everything to me. My family is everything. They are not just people they are THE people so I could have bunched them in with my people section above, but I didn’t want to. I needed them to have their own separate special place here. Mostly because I don’t want to hear it when I get home. They are the ones who show us what to expect from the world. They can shelter us or bring reality crashing down upon us, but they are family. I have been blessed with an entire family of crazies who I absolutely love and adore. They inspire me in all different ways to go for it where my dreams are concerned. My nieces and nephews are huge inspirations. They are so young and to see the world in their eyes is amazing.
Use it all. Let the inspiration come from everywhere. Don’t let it just sit in your mind as an oh that could be an idea. Follow the idea. Write it down. Let it take off and see where it leads you. Be inspired and recognize everything in the world for what it is. An inspiration. This world is a beautiful and inspirational place.
I have this history of going between all of my stories. I thought it was beneficial for the longest time. I used to be able to bounce between idea and idea. However, I have recently printed off a few of my stories in which I did this.
It did not work out well in the end.
I found the story that I worked on consistently had a better flow and overall seemed more successful.
This is when I began to realize if I want to be successful with my writing that I can take notes or write little pieces for the other works to build on later when I can lay it out. I cannot jump from story to story. It doesn’t work for me.
I know many others who can go from piece to piece (In many professions) and I applaud them. It did not work well for me, but for them it is part of their success. It is awesome to see where my growth needs to come from and what is and is not beneficial to me.…
Taking to the keyboard and hammering things into a story when my brain is mimicking a squirrel at a rave is not it.
It did give way for some awesome ideas though.
I enjoy figuring out my true process and taking it one day at a time. So, I will let everyone know what the next change is when it finds me.
Truth be told this last week was horribly exhausting. I had to take a break from posting to focus on my final papers. Both of the papers wound up being over fourteen pages and a separate migraine for each. I stayed up most nights editing and being supremely obsessive over small perfections/imperfections.
On top of finals I have battled off the cold sent from Hades. I am fairly sure it was personal just to test my limits on how much screen time each migraine would allow. (Here is me glancing and judging for that challenge. It was not a fan favorite. Next time dial it down.)
However, despite a horrible cold and little to no sleep I successfully got them in on time. I did find some time (Not as much as I would have liked) to start a short story. I am happy to say it is 80% done and I will have it edited and up in the next few days.
I put a lot of pressure on myself to hit my goals and to push through things. The reality of this week (the last ten days really) and the stress it has been showed me that, as much as I want, sometimes I need to listen to my body and take a break. I am happy that I still made time to work on the story, but not hitting my personal goal hit me a little bit.
I didn’t hit my goal with adding and taking care of my novel. That I think felt worse than missing my short story deadline. I have accomplished the outline for my series map of the world I have created, which I cannot wait to share with everyone, but I didn’t get further than that.
School comes first and it is important. Especially heading into my final year. I am beyond ready for it, but I know that finding time will only get harder. I am excited to share all of the short stories I create in my free time and in all of my future courses with everyone.
Thanks for letting me vent and for reading!
I have been told many times that if one wants to become a writer they need to read every second they can. I began small with just a few shelves and now I have two sides of a closet that look like this.
Books have taught me how to open my mind to millions of possibilities and that some of my weird creations can be amazing. It is all about how you tell a story, and I want to tell my stories good and bad to the world. I want to tell them with magic flowing through the words, with fire wound within the chapter, and with emotion dripping off of the pages.
I find inspiration in what I read. I find solace in knowing I am not the only one who has a mind that wanders and creates worlds of their own, characters of their own, and shares stories of their own. Books have saved me in many ways, and writing my own pieces has helped me share a little bit of myself with the world. (Not with many yet, but one day.) Books and writing have helped me find my voice, both have helped me get through things I never thought I would, and I don’t think I would be on this journey if I didn’t keep picking up books and picking up my pens. If not for reading I don’t think I would be able to write any of the pieces that I write.
The connection between reading and writing is so important to me. Without one I wouldn’t have realized my love for the other. Writing can only benefit from picking up a book and traveling outside of ones normal and landing somewhere no one ever expects to go. Take that adventure. Turn the pages. Fall in love, or complete hate, with characters and worlds. It will open up your world and all of the possibilities in it.
For me, there wouldn’t be a dream without books.
I don’t know how anyone else handles spontaneous ideas, but personally I write on anything if the need arises. I have an embarrassing pile of ideas that have been sorted into each series of notebooks. I have compiled many notebooks (I am serious when I say MANY) from these notes and many stories are just beginning.
I don’t always think logically when writing. I could be out in a store, for example, shopping for a random number of unnecessary items when a song comes on overhead and an idea sparks. After that initial spark I find myself scrounging into the deepest depths of chaos that is my purse looking for my emergency pen. (Yes. I said emergency pen.) I dig it out and have rushed up to random work stations to steal a piece of scratch paper, I have asked an embarrassing number of employees for receipt paper, and I have even decided what the heck and written in a notebook knowing I would have to put something back just to write it down.
(Before anyone says, “What about the notepad in your phone?” and starts to judge me…) I am not the person to usually leave her phone fully charged. If I look down and that thing is on two percent I am rushing up to someone for paper. (I probably need that two percent for music to get home. Just being honest.)
I used to work retail and I used to be a waitress. I have a stash of paper from my waitressing notepad days that started some of my current ideas. I also have all types of paper that I could find working retail. I will not lie and say I have never used a napkin or done a last resort to toilet paper because I absolutely have.
If the Idea is there and is begging to come out I will write it down before it floats away somewhere else. I lost a few pieces in a recent move and a recent purge, but I am choosing to believe that those ideas were not meant for me to continue with and who knows they might spark something for someone else.
That’s right everyone… it is time. Writers Block. It has set in and I have had many feelings about it. I am talking from “it will work itself out” all the way to “let me just throw my computer out of a moving vehicle and see if that prompts some things”.
There are many times that I can use the prompts to kick my creativity into gear, I can write a random short story to get my mind back in my creative zone, and times where I can draw my way into writing. This time, however, is in no way one of those times. I have tried it all this week after editing the last short story, and all everything has made me want to do is scream. (I would have to drive to the middle of nowhere with the windows up and horror movie scream to feel better, but I don’t have the time or the want to waste gas for that.)
I have turned to reading different genres to pull myself outside the style I am writing. (Just going to insert the “Didn’t work” button here.) I have done workbooks, prompts, and just writing to see what pops out. I have thrown a lot of pages in the trash. I couldn’t even make sense of my own work. This has been occurring for days and my frustration has been growing.
It might have to do with being so focused on my midterms for school and it is pulling my focus, but I felt one little inspiration spark while I was driving. Traffic was terrible and I didn’t pay attention to the song that was on. I wish I would have. Now I need to go through my entire song library to get it back.
One way or another I am going to kick this writers block. I will try everything over and over again until something works. The wall will crumble and my work will just flow together again.
Maybe I should just blog it out whenever I feel this way. This is the most productive writing wise I have felt in a few days. I am going to try a prompt her and see if I can come up with something to kick it out.
The prompt today is…
“The music drifted out of the club like a vibrating pulse. I could feel it in my bones. The night was alive with possibility. I could even imagine myself____”
I could even imagine myself walking to the ocean to touch the water. I could feel the power behind it run through my veins, and I could see myself letting it take control. I shook my head as I made my way down the road. The power was the reason I ran from the shores to begin with. They were all consuming and disastrous on the best of days. They had taken over before and I almost didn’t get myself back.
A chill had settled into my bones from the night air letting me know it was time to either go back in or find my way back to the hotel. This trip was beginning to tear me in two. I wanted to keep being the me I knew now, but it was truly hard to do when the waters called to me. None of my friends could understand the struggle. None of them knew how it felt. I looked one last time into the club and turned to walk away.
After a few minutes of walking aimlessly I could hear the waves roaring at me to touch them. I looked up into the glistening waters and closed my eyes to breathe in the salty air. Before I knew what was happening I was in the water and it surrounded me. It consumed me whole. I didn’t even panic or worry that I wouldn’t find my way back. I didn’t want to. I just wanted to feel the water pulse through me, heart and soul.
This one was an interesting write for me. I have been working on it over the past week and have debated if this was the route I wanted to take. I had four other endings for it that just didn’t seem to go how I wanted. This one felt like my best fit.
I hope you all enjoy!
While being a full time student is many things, among them sleepless and half there while clinging to coffee cups, the most important thing is doing the research and putting in the work. I never realized how much I carried my research process over into my writing until the other day. My process is very much mirroring how I get through school. I never noticed it or thought about it until looking between two notebooks while sitting on my floor.
I was sitting on my floor (because as mentioned in my previous post I have no writing worthy chairs) looking at all of my homework,for my abnormal psychology course, and the work I am doing for my novels, it hit me. The pile I have for research and for helping me advance my writing is larger than all of my school work.
The notebooks under my desk are not just filled with stories. They are filled with hours and hours of research to build the correct characters and worlds. They are filled with an obscene amount of notes on how to write each section to the best of my ability.
I have more books on the writing process than I realized. I also have more books for keeping my mind going with prompts to keep me creative. Not only is research getting me through school, but it is helping advance my writing outside of school as well.
I love finding new ways to experience writing and all of my research has allowed me to do just that.
Now looking past the books filled with tips and advice I have another pile. This pile is growing and changing constantly. This pile takes my mind to other worlds where creatures live and what makes them, well, them. I research all types of creatures and beings to make sure I am doing whatever creatures I create justice. I want to create new worlds with new creatures, but I always want a classic twist or a classic being that stand out. Again I say, “Research is the key.”
I wonder if anyone else has a research pile some days. I don’t know if anyone researches as obsessively as I do, but if anyone does I would love to hear about some of your processes as writers. Is research as much of a key component for you or are you a by the seat of your pants writer?
I have tried desks, floors, random comfy chairs, horribly hard chairs that force you to have great posture so you don’t lean back on them, counters, tables of all varieties, and many locations. I have yet to find that one spot that is just my spot.
My desk is currently piled high with my sketch and art area for designing my characters so that I can actually see what I want to write. It is also home to so many notebooks I have officially lost count. My favorite corner is the one that houses all of my books with tips and tricks as well as inspiration to keep me going. (That pile has reached outrageous lengths almost rivaling my notebooks). When I realized this I became stuck with writing on the floor of my room thinking about how I need a bigger desk. Possibly how I need a better storage system, but that is an issue for another time.
Now the floor is not one of those I could sit and relax and be comfortable here for a while floors. It is the you can maybe sit there for a good fifteen then everything hurts everywhere, and I mean everywhere. My back hates it, my hip despises it, and my neck vetoed it when I kept looking down to type. Clearly I cannot claim my floor as “my writing space”.
Chairs in my house, if comfy, have a tendency to become uncomfortable as my floor by the time I finish my homework and move on to trying to accomplish goals. I can only love them for so long before wondering if I need a new one or if I am just tired of the one I have. The horribly hard chairs, while giving me great posture, do not work out well for obvious reasons. A woman just wants to be comfortable and write.
Tables and counters. I am 5′ 4″. I am at the awkward height of having to bend forward at a counter on a too tall stool or having my arms sit at my shoulders on a table trying to type because the chairs are just not my damn height. Now I know what everyone is thinking at this point. A good office chair right? Well, here is where I ask, “And where would this nice, supportive, and comfortable office chair reside?” It is not the desk. That is a black hole of issues I am not ready to tackle at this moment.
One day I will find my perfect chair. It will sit at my desk. Not this desk. A desk. A new desk. It will let me keep pushing out word for word and let me be happy. It will also absolutely not be in public where people continue to randomly ask questions and interrupt my work. (I have tried coffee houses. It didn’t work well. Props to everyone who can make that work you are all amazing and have laser focus.) It is a dream that is currently out running me, but I will catch up to it (and I will lock everyone else out when I do). I will fill it with Novelly Yours “Muse Fuse” candles, put up photos to surround me and remind me why I am doing it, line the walls with books, be a little more organized, and put a lock on the door.
I recently submitted this to my school’s online literary website. I have been waiting for news for a little bit, and the story is special to me. It has been my first official submission anywhere, it touches on some very important issues I have dealt with, and it is a piece of work that I am proud of.
I hope you all enjoy it!
Who am I and what will this blog be about?
Welcome to my blog! My name is Adrianna Benavides. I am an aspiring author who is hoping to make it in the New Adult genre. I mostly write fantasy and cannot wait to share my work with the world!
This blog is something I have thought about doing for a very long time. I want to share my experiences both good and bad from beginning to end. I am excited to share it with everyone. However, I am new to this so please hang in there with me it might take a few posts to get on my feet.
Why Do a Blog Like This?
Some Things About Me
Hopes, Dreams, Goals, Successes, and Failures
I hope this blog will help me grow as a writer, and I hope it will help me move forward with my dreams.
My dreams are to share my stories with the world. If they reach even one person I would be extremely happy.
My goal is to share one short story a week minimum, as well as a personal update about my struggles, goals, accomplishments, and dreams. I would like to share my failures. I want to share any tips I can for other writers to help them like others have helped me.
You can find me on Instagram as abenavides_writing