Saturday, 29 January 2011
In the critiquing circle I'm participating in via AW, I'm the next up for having my chapters ripped apart. Should be fun, and hopefully helpful too!
Meanwhile, I have written a bit more of STORM in the last few days, and I am currently halfway through the 2nd-last chapter. I'm pretty sure there'll only be one more after this one, to tie things up. But who knows what'll happen during revisions.
I've really been looking forward to NaNoEdMo, when I can really get stuck into editing FIRE. I can't wait to see the words slough away under my iron editing thumb. Er, yes, my thumb is iron. Or it will be.
And that's about it for updates. Except I wrote a story this week for Chrysalis which involves my idea of the most pathetic girl on the planet. I feel sorry for her, because her entire life is her jerk-faced boyfriend. And guess what happens? He dumps her.
As my critiquing buddy Jenn put it after reading... "Ouch."
Speaking of both Jenn AND Chrysalis, Jenn's story is up for this week. And I must say that after reading it, I was in a state of shock and awe. It's pretty AWESOME.
Wednesday, 26 January 2011
In other fun news, my "murdered darling" is featured on Charlotte Jane Ivory's Murder Your Darlings blog. You can find my deliciously "awkward" young adult fiction excerpt (I started writing this when I was an early teen and it's probably more novella length than anything), and follow along with my commentary, here. I'm glad to have been featured, and I encourage the rest of you guys to give it a go too with any discarded manuscripts (rough drafts) you don't intend to try publishing at any point. It's fun to look back and breathe a sigh of relief for where you are in the present.
And finally, the fourth prompt (from Winter again this week) for The Chrysalis Experiment is up! Once again this time, I had a false start this week and discarded my first attempt for a second. I'm excited about how our little project is going so far! If you're interested in writing short stories this year, you should check us out! There's no pressure to submit, just to keep having fun. You MUST keep having fun, OR ELSE.
Monday, 24 January 2011
I am also calculating these in part according to my Last.fm charts, the "overall" kind.
|Artist & Song Name||Why It Inspires Me|
|Lacuna Coil - Stars||This is one of the first songs I heard by LC (even if it is a cover!), and I just found it beautiful and haunting and wonderful. It inspires me in so many ways. Mostly it gives me amazing story ideas, not that I've actually written any of those ideas. It just makes me feel...inspired!|
|Madonna - White Heat||It's probably my favourite Madonna song. As a little girl it definitely inspired me, and I played it over and over again. I love the melody. It's interesting to me that a mere melody can conjure such inspiration. Never mind the lyrics, which for this song are pretty cool too.|
|Unwritten Law - How You Feel||Gorgeous beautiful song. One of my favourite lurve songs, or I see it as one anyway. It just makes me happy. It's not one of those "sad" love songs. It's uplifting and makes me want to get up and dance.|
|Catherine Wheel - Black Metallic||I found this song (and therefore this band) by accident one time. I am SO glad for that very happy accident. Catherine Wheel have an amazingly beautiful and inspirational sound. This song is epic, and again I find it inspiring.|
|Michael Jackson - Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'||Oh, man. This was one of the songs played at my 30th birthday (I devised the 6+ hour playlist myself) and it was an awesome moment when it started over the sound system. This song takes me back to childhood, and NEVER fails to make me want to dance.|
|Superette - Waves||Pretty, sad song. It definitely inspires in a bleak, grim kind of way. It tells a sad story. But I do so love the song.|
|Veruca Salt - Sundown||This song is definitely inspiring in a haunting, creepy way. It's not so much creepy as...it gives me chills. I can completely see the line "See the sun...going down" as a bit of a metaphor for all sorts of dramatic, shocking stuff in my writing. And to think this song is a demoey b-side from one of the band's singles!|
|VNV Nation - Darkangel (Gabriel)||Inspiring, haunting, darkly beautiful. Bleak, yet it strikes awe into my little heart. This is a song I listen to over and over. Then again, the same could be said about all the songs in this list.|
|The Smashing Pumpkins - Waiting||This song has always, for some odd reason, inspired images of snow-clad winter gardens and a wandering, lonely stranger. I don't know that stranger's story, but I know it's compelling. The kind of story that would make your jaw drop. And the garden itself is stunningly beautiful. Like this magnificent song.|
|Strapping Young Lad - Detox||Ha. I do love me some metal, but it's not my absolute staple when it comes to music. But this song, and this band, are amongst my favourites. They definitely inspire me with my writing. I picture post-apocalyptic sci-fi scenes when I listen to this band. I don't know why. I also picture some zombie-pocalypse scenarios, for no apparent reason. It's just the sound, and how it makes me feel.|
It's ridiculous to have to reduce the immense number of songs I absolutely adore to a mere 10, but the above songs are definitely amongst my all-time favourites. I feel like the list represents pretty well the range of my musical taste, though there are of course plenty of my favourite artists not represented. I love my alternative/alt. rock, my metal, my 80s pop/dance and my more modern electronic music. Mostly it's the rock for me; gotta love a loud guitar. But yeah, you can see that I'm into a range of stuff.
So anyway, this was fun. Difficult, torturous, etc., but fun. :)
Edit: Oops. I forgot to say why they inspire me. :D Tacking that on now.
Sunday, 23 January 2011
Saturday, 22 January 2011
- The Gathering Storm - Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
- Towers of Midnight - Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
- The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner - Stephenie Meyer
Tuesday, 18 January 2011
And I have to say, my process varies a fair bit. Obviously I come up with the idea first. Usually it's a character, not a place or a scenario. For instance, with SQUEAKY MCLEAN, I was at work one day, and I made a mouse-like squeaking sound. So the character Squeaky McLean was born. And with SUNDOWN, I thought about my ideal man (as opposed to the apparent ideal man to many at the time, Edward Cullen) and came up with my beloved Jared. A kind-hearted, tall dark & not-quite-handsome rock star. Can't get much sexier than that. :D So yeah, it's usually a character I will come up with first. Not always their name, but their face and demeanour at least. And often, I will indeed see the situation they're in at that point too. But for Squeaky and Jared, it was just the face, and their role in life.
The rest of it goes from there.
But wait...this wasn't about "Where do you start?" it was "What's your process?"
1. Think of a character, and what they're about.
2. Think of a scenario that character would likely find themselves in.
3. Start writing.
I don't necessarily plan my stories out. I did that with NaNoWriMo 2010, and it certain helped me stay focused, but (and I'm not sure if this was coincidence or not) I also found the novel quite hard to finish. Once I got past 50k, I really slacked off and found it a bit of a chore to keep writing. I'm not saying this is because I planned it all out. But it may have some relevance.
I admit that with SUNDOWN and the other novels in that series, I had to do a bit of planning. Namely, a timeline. A very extensive timeline. And I've referred to it constantly throughout the writing/editing process. It's been essential. So I guess that counts as planning it all out, right? Then again, the timeline underwent serious changes here and there as I changed my mind about things. I even did an "alternative timeline if so and so hadn't died in book 2", so that the characters would be able to refer to where they would have been if not for the death.
So yeah...I guess that's my process.
Monday, 17 January 2011
I've written about half of the third-last chapter of STORM. I could even imagine getting the thing (i.e. the entire novel) done before I hope on that plane on Thursday morning. But we'll see. I'm not pushing myself, particularly. I do have the entire year to get it done after all.
As for other goals, I'm looking forward to NaNoEdMo so I can get stuck into editing something new for a change (watch out FIRE, you're gonna get shred-DED!).
Meanwhile, I've got a plane or 3 to catch this week, a wedding to attend (in the Canadian Rockies, and as a bridesmaid, woo!), and...well, I guess that's it really! It'll do for the time being.
Last night I had a weird dream about attending a Smashing Pumpkins concert and seeing a friend get back stage with Billy, while I was left behind. The friend wasn't even a fan. LOL. It was a weird dream. Do any of you ever get inspired by dreams? I've written a few stories based on dreams before, and intend to write more in future. I've had some wacky dreams for sure.
Saturday, 15 January 2011
Friday, 14 January 2011
|The rules of the award are:|
So without further ado, here I go!
Seven Things About Myself:
- I'm a cat person, for sure. I love animals in general, but there is just something special about that "bitchy" cat attitude a lot of felines exhibit. Then again, I've got proof that cats can be perfectly smoochy, in my kitty Beyoncé. She was a foster kitty I decided to keep - how could I turn her away when she was the cat I'd always dreamed of (snuggly, cuddly and loyal). Weird, I never thought I wanted a dog, but apparently I've got one in this cat. Hehe.
- I can sing in tune. In the past I didn't tend to advertise my singing because I find it a little awkward to be so overtly self-promotional. Guess I'll have to get used to that kind of thing if I ever want to be published, right? But music is different. Still, I can indeed sing, and I've written many a song.
- My parents are New Zealanders (Kiwis as we call 'em), my brother's Australian living in Canada, and I was born in the United Kingdom. I've got two citizenships, Aussie and U.K., which makes it handy when you're lining up at the airport and have to choose a line. But my U.K. passport has lapsed. Yikes. I better get on replacing that!
- I've had an online "diary" for over 10 years at a different place, but it was only in December 2010 that I finally decided to start a blog to talk specifically about writing, and to focus on that. Networking, they call it. Well, since I've started this blog I've found lots of cool people and have begun to wish I'd signed up here a lot sooner! Oh well, better late than never, right?
- My favourite band is the Smashing Pumpkins, hands down, no question, forever and ever and ever. If you think their albums are where it ends, think again - they've got an incredible collection of b-sides and rarities for you to feast your ears on. Billy Corgan is my favourite musician and I still hold out hope I'll get to marry him someday. What? A girl can dream. And there's something about that bald head... I love the guy who plays Lex in Smallville too. What's that about? Hehe.
- I've never smoked a cigarette in my entire life. Never even taken a single puff. Saved me a lot of money, for sure! And while my lungs have still suffered from passive smoking, I guess that's life in this day and age.
- When it's been raining and I get home, I hop out of my car and move all the snails off the driveway to ensure I don't run over them. Sometimes it can take me a while, out there in the rain, moving all the adults and the baby snails to the safety of the grass. Only to be trod on later by passing pedestrians, no doubt. But still, I didn't kill them. I also rescue mice and rats (at least the baby rats) from my cats and throw them out in the empty lot at the back of my place. Recently I had to rescue a baby mouse that was so young it barely had its fur!
Ok, so that's it! I'm done. Thanks again Sheery. :D
Now for the 15 bloggers (and their blogs, naturally) I award in turn! I know some of you have had this award before, but...well...you guys deserve it again! :P Okay? Okay.
- Bronwyn's Writing Blog ... Bronwyn
- nindogs ... Nina
- Lynda Young ... Lynda
- Whole Latte Life ... Joanne
- Cheyanne with an A ... Cheyanne
- Pen and Chocolate ... Griffinclaw
- Opening the Vein ... GriffinFledgling
- Musings of a Palindrome ... Hannah
- The Eagle's Aerial Perspective ... The Golden Eagle
- Falen Formulates Fiction ... Sarah
- Paper Mountain ... Brooke
- Writing While the Rice Boils ... Debbie
- Shayda Writes ... Shayda
- This Is Not My Day Job ... Guinevere
- Cinnamon Quill ... Keri
Phew! Done for realz! Back to your regular programming, ya know? :)
Thursday, 13 January 2011
I looked up a list of "classic" novels, and found this page: 1000 novels everyone must read: the definitive list.
I went through the entire list, and these are the ones I have indeed read:
- Bridget Jones's Diary - Helen Fielding
- The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Aged 13 3/4 - Sue Townsend
- Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
- Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
- Emma - Jane Austen
- Persuasion - Jane Austen
- Jane Eyre - Charlotte Brontë
- Wuthering Heights - Emily Brontë
- Neuromancer - William Gibson
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone - J.K. Rowling
- The Hobbit - J.R.R. Tolkien
- The Sword in the Stone - T.H. White
- Everything Is Illuminated - Jonathan Safran Foer
And now the list of those books I know I've read at least some of, but can't remember actually finishing:
- The Name of the Rose - Umberto Eco
- White Noise - Don DeLillo
- Animal Farm - George Orwell
And those books I never got to the end of, in spite of writing English essays on them and getting excellent marks:
- The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
Incidentally, this list would have been a lot shorter if I hadn't made it a mission in 2009 to finally read some Jane Austen (and the Brontës).
I did find some other items in the list that I vaguely recall having read or maybe started reading, but my uncertainty made me leave them off the lists.
Wednesday, 12 January 2011
I love this week's creepy story. I've been telling people it's about a murderous painting. But it's not quite finished yet. Anyway... Here is a little excerpt:
"You ready?" Marc asks, his hand brushing mine.
I pull away from him, swallowing. "Yeah. I guess I have to be, right?"
He looks at me, but says nothing. He doesn't understand the power of the house. The dark, magnetic power of it. Maybe he will soon.
But I'm scared. I'm scared he's going to laugh at me. When he sees the painting, he'll see me too, in an entirely new light. He'll know I'm a drama queen for sure.
Exhaling loudly, I shrug inside my denim jacket and reach out to grip the doorhandle. Like so many times before. I twist it, and the door opens. Don't even need a key. This is a small town.
Has the painting ever left the wall? Has it wandered, perhaps? Gone on a nocturnal journey? Paintings generally can't walk. I know that. But this one is different. This one is…alive. Its eyes follow a person. Its smile seems to tilt upwards whenever you look at it.
I shiver and step into the hallway.
It looks just the same as it used to. Nothing's changed.
It comes in at just under 3,000 words so far. Not sure what the final word count will be.
Can't wait to see what other people write for this week's story.
And then I'm sure we can expect something awesome from Jenn's prompt next week. Heehee. This is such a fun project!
© Trisha W.F.
Monday, 10 January 2011
I thought I'd do an update on my goals as they lie so far in 2011. That way I don't have to do that reverb10 stuff yet, and yay, I love procrastination! Hehe. So here goes:
- Finish current edit of SUNDOWN and order a proof copy (done - received my copy, it's lovely!)
- Participate in NaNoEdMo 2011, editing book 4 of SUNDOWN series (counting down the days! As of now, we have 49 Days, 13 Hours, 32 Minutes, 17 Seconds to go)
- Write 52 short stories, one per week, for the Chrysalis Experiment (written my first story; next is my turn to post a prompt, and I'm struggling to choose between a few options. Excitement!)
- Write at least once a week in W O R D + S T U F F blog (doing well at this so far!)
- Win NaNoWriMo 2011 (naturally I can't do much about this yet :D)
- Finish off first draft of STORM (not anywhere near starting this yet...but I'm thinking about it. Now is probably the time to start doing it)
- Complete a preliminary read-through/edit of NAUSICAA (putting this off...maybe until the second half of the year. Still not over NaNo '10. hehe)
I won't bother with the other items on the list, which are "would like to but probably won't", or "definitely won't, even if I'd like to" items. I will update my G O A L S '11 page each time something gets crossed off.
How's everyone going with their new years' goals/resolutions so far??
Sunday, 9 January 2011
I thought I would talk about the books I'm reading right now, in an effort to get my attention off my floundering query and stalled editing of novel for said query, and...yeah. That stuff. I've been reading the Wheel of Time series since I was about 14 or so. It's a series by Robert Jordan, but some may know that Mr. Jordan passed away in 2007. The series wasn't finished, but Jordan had planned everything out. And he'd even enlisted his wife to find a replacement author to complete the story after he was gone. Cue Brandon Sanderson.
Saturday, 8 January 2011
Friday, 7 January 2011
Thursday, 6 January 2011
- Instead of my heroine meeting her hero on page 57 or so, which is what happened in my draft (at least, in the proof copy I just received :D), she meets him on page 9 (size 11 font, Times New Roman. hehe)
- Instead of a word count of 128k or so, I have a word count of 113,362
Wednesday, 5 January 2011
Tuesday, 4 January 2011
We already have a few people participating. Exciting!!
Now, I thought I'd get some more Reverb10 done...yes, after the fact. But I am determined to finish!
December 22: Travel
In 2010 I started out the year in Canada, where my mum and I had been for Christmas and New Year's with my brother who lives there now. We spent that time with him, his wife-to-be and her family, and had an amazing time. Those people are incredibly generous and fun-loving, and they only wanted to entertain us. In short, we're lucky to be marrying into such a family. Hehe. Then again, they're lucky to be marrying into ours too. I also travelled to the U.S. again in August-September, to hang out with friends and go on a road trip from L.A. to Atlanta and back again. It was amazing! As for travelling in 2011, I am going to my brother's wedding, leaving early on January 20th and returning by February 4th. Other than that, I may or may not get peer-pressured by a work colleague to travel to the U.K. I can't really afford it, but she is pretty persuasive. :D
December 23: New Name
If I could introduce myself to strangers by a new name just for one day, I'd probably introduce myself as Squeaky McLean, mouse detective. After all, that's who I was supposed to be in a former life. ;)
December 24: Everything's OK
The best moment from the year that proved everything is all right? Probably the moment when I stopped to reflect on all I had achieved in 2010, writing-wise, and could look back and go, Yeah, I did okay this year! It was a pretty good year! And going into the new year, I managed to set myself greater challenges which I am confident I can achieve.
December 25: Photo
I think this photo encapsulates who I am, quite nicely. My friend Joni and I in her home in L.A., drinking wine and me pulling a silly face. Yep, that's so me, all round.
And nobody took it technically, unless you count the table. Well, either Joni or I pressed the button, and I think it was Joni who set the camera in that particular position, but it was my camera. Joint effort?
Monday, 3 January 2011
Okay, so I am supposed to be finishing off the Reverb10 stuff, but I saw this instead (thanks nindogs!) and felt compelled to sign up!
Minutes passed and the gathered agents grew restless. The last arrivals trickled in, and then Aegiale and Juturna stepped up to the podium, turning to face the rest. Delphyne and Ramnes exchanged confused looks, then waited expectantly.“Thank you for attending,” Aegiale spoke, surveying her fellow agents with an unreadable expression. “Especially on such short notice. We have a few messages to impart on behalf of your true Founders.” She looked beyond the crowd at the entrance doors and said in a tone of ringing command, “Open the doors.”True Founders? Delphyne had time to think in confusion before armed soldiers poured in through the doors and took up positions around the perimeter of the room. She looked again at Ramnes and saw that he was frowning fiercely. I’m thinking I should have ignored this summons, Delphyne thought, and believed from what she saw that Ramnes was probably thinking the same thing. He never would have done it, though—he was an excellent soldier, always the quickest to follow orders.When she looked back at the podium she saw that Juturna was now armed as well. “Please hear your new orders, and heed them.” She looked to one of the armed soldiers, seemingly the leader, and nodded once. Then the soldiers opened fire.In the madness that followed, Delphyne felt quite sure that she had lost her mind. The world turned black and red, and white for the flash of gunfire. The noise was unbelievable, and she clamped her hands over her ears desperately wishing to escape. After mere moments that felt like centuries, the world grew silent, and Delphyne found herself face down in darkness, some sort of weight pinning her legs while another lay across her back. She realised that she was breathing heavily, a sound that surely could be heard even Above Ground, and tried to make herself stop. But no…she had to breathe. You couldn’t just stop breathing. Bodies stopped working if their owners stopped breathing.She heard sounds, but in the wake of the thunderous madness that had brought her to this dark place they had been undetectable at first. She heard them now as her hearing equalised, and tried to figure out what they were. Ticks and groans, as when you stepped on old floorboards—Ganza had no floorboards though; she remembered that much—faint shuffling sounds, and the nearby sound of ragged breathing. That wasn’t hers, surely—she’d got herself under control.Slowly her mind cleared, and she remembered the last things she’d seen before ending up in darkness. The soldiers, shooting into the crowd of agents…shooting to kill. Juturna, turning her gun on Aegiale and ordering her down into the seething. Aegiale’s horrified look, a look that spoke of betrayal. And Juturna’s face, cold and emotionless and indicative of just how much this was a business transaction to her. Cutting down her own people clearly hadn’t worried her all that much.
© Trisha W.F.