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30 Jun 2014

Ready. Set. Write: The Strange Case of Productiveness

Ready. Set. Write! is a summer writing intensive that is hosted during the months of June, July, and August by Jaime Morrow, Erin Funk, Alison Miller and Katy Upperman.  If you want to participate you come up with your own writing goals for those three months and check in with a short update every Monday.  This year RSW starts today until August 25th.

HOW I DID ON LAST WEEK'S GOALS:
  • Chapter 3 edit of Inside the Broom Closet (Done and also started on Chapter 4)
  • Send off short story (Done) 
MY GOAL(S) FOR THIS WEEK:
Edit the rest of Chapter 4 for Inside the Broom Closet and start on July Camp NaNo.  I did intend on planning and preparing for it but I'm going to take a risk this year and wing it.  I have an idea in mind that I've been mentally planning but haven't got it all organised into notes.

THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE I FACED THIS WEEK:
Again, another busy week of covering lessons at work and driving to and from Leeds, Darlington and Newcastle a lot this weekend but the writing got done so this week hasn't been too bad for time.

A FAVOURITE LINE FROM MY STORY OR ONE WORD/PHRASE THAT SUMS UP WHAT I WROTE/REVISED:
With his cheeky grin never leaving his face, Connor flipped his middle finger at every mocking student and jumped back up.

SOMETHING I LOVE ABOUT MY WIP:
Connor! He made his grand entrance in Chapter 3 so I had lots of fun writing with him.  

26 Jun 2014

Tag! Five Character Facts

Much thanks to Miss Cole who tagged me in this character bloghop! The idea is to introduce a character from your current WiP and write facts about them.

I'll take a character from the WiP I'm editing at the moment:

Inside the Broom Closet is a YA (still unsure about genre) novel set in an alternate modern day universe where witchcraft is against the law and punishable by death.  Three teenagers who are sick of the oppression they face begin to protest against their anti-witchcraft government but is rebellion and fear really the way to earn their rights?

Connor Moore is an Irish teen who has grown up bitter towards the government and the laws they have enforced that have encouraged hatred and fear for witchcraft.  Here are five facts about him:

1) He's an incredibly opinionated teenager who wants to voice out his beliefs and opinions through documentary making.

2) His rival is David, a bookish and studious teenager in most of his classes who sees Connor as competition and is homophobic towards him. Getting bullied and abused by David, verbally and physically, is part of Connor's daily routine.

3) Hannah is his best and only friend, until newbie Brandon comes along and joins up with the gruesome twosome .  Hannah and Connor met in year 8 and have been inseparable since.

4) He's impulsive, immediately leaping to the idea of starting a rebellion and standing up for his identity and beliefs.  Brandon's 'fight power with power' motto is quite appealing to him.

5) He looks like the love child of Christian Slater and Sid Vicious and owns one coat: an old, black and swishy trench coat.

I love coming across music for characters as well as the whole story itself so if I could associate any song with Connor: (Warning: Language)

Minority - Green Day


I tag Jaime Morrow and Sara Biren! =D

24 Jun 2014

Book Review: The Iron Queen by Julie Kagawa

My name is Meghan Chase.

I thought it was over. That my time with the fey, the impossible choices I had to make, the sacrifices of those I loved, was behind me. But a storm is approaching, an army of Iron fey that will drag me back, kicking and screaming. Drag me away from the banished prince who's sworn to stand by my side. Drag me into the core of conflict so powerful, I'm not sure anyone can survive it.

This time, there will be no turning back.


The romance between Ash and Meghan still has me wanting to claw my eyes out. On the plus side he's not threatening to kill her anymore, admitting he would willingly kill her if ordered to, and not a hostile jerk anymore. But his dialogue now is full of mush and cheese that, honestly, it made me roll my eyes and gag quite a few times. I'm just not an Ash fan. He's either cold or he's soppy and frankly both shades of him aren't really that interesting. Not Julie Kagawa's strongest character IMO.

Apart from her relationship with Ash I do like Meghan. She's slowly become a warrior after accepting that having a normal life is a complete no-no, learning that there is a war going on that she feels she has responsibility for. She's coming to care for this Feary world she believes she's never belonged in and is willing to risk her life to save it. Not only that she's careful about Fey bargains, learning how to find loopholes in them and make loopholes herself. The girl's got some brains about her. I was glad to see that Meghan had to be the reasonable one and make sacrifices, understanding that she had other priorities while Ash obsessed about their relationship.  She wasn't afraid to call him out and set out to do what she felt was important.

I think this marks the end of Meghan's narration as the next book is in the POV of Ash. In a way it's not something I have high expectations for but who knows? Maybe Ash has an interesting mind and we'll see a better personality. The book after that (The Lost Prince) focuses on Meghan's half-brother Ethan. So this may be the last we properly see of Meghan. If so, I thought the book ended her story quite nicely, leaving it open in the future for Kagawa to explore but not so open that Meghan's journey wouldn't feel unfinished to readers.

Overall, my favourite book out of the Iron Fey series so far.

23 Jun 2014

Ready. Set. Write: Feeling Human

Ready. Set. Write! is a summer writing intensive that is hosted during the months of June, July, and August by Jaime Morrow, Erin Funk, Alison Miller and Katy Upperman.  If you want to participate you come up with your own writing goals for those three months and check in with a short update every Monday.  This year RSW starts today until August 25th.

HOW I DID ON LAST WEEK'S GOALS:
Last week I decided to try and do the goals I'd set the first time round since I was full of cold and didn't get anything done.  I managed to revise and write up the chapter and took a look through my short story.

MY GOAL(S) FOR THIS WEEK:
Chapter 3 edit of Inside the Broom Closet and send off short story.

THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE I FACED THIS WEEK:
Actually making time.  I'm supposed to be taking over PPA time at work and covering lessons which is great teaching experience but I'm already getting a taste of how much work I need to put in.  Lots of powerpoints needed to be created!

A FAVOURITE LINE FROM MY STORY OR ONE WORD/PHRASE THAT SUMS UP WHAT I WROTE/REVISED:
Ashley having his daily freak out. Hannah dressed in patterns and colours.

SOMETHING I LOVE ABOUT MY WIP:
Ashley's out-of-control magick moments.  Denying your powers comes with great consequences.

18 Jun 2014

What's Up Wednesday

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly feature created by Jaime Morrow and Erin L. Funk. Perfect for readers and writers who want to share what they've been up to on a weekly basis and right now the place to share your goals.

1) What I'm Reading
Been reading more of Cress.  Slow but loving it.  Was also quite excited to hear the author, Marissa Meyer, is doing a prequel on Queen Levana! I know it means Winter has been pushed to November 2015 but think about it... two Lunar Chronicle novels instead of just one in 2015? I can go with that!


2) What I'm Writing
Working on my anarchist witches WiP for Ready. Set. Write! Need to get cracking on that since a bug last week left me bedridden most of the time and not quite with it.  And my love for the amateur ghost hunting teens is slowly coming back.  I was watching Grave Encounters and thought it had been too long since I was putting that little bunch through hell. 


3) What Else I've Been Up To
Despite having a cold I was determined to see Wicked on Saturday because I had been waiting a
whole year for it to arrive.  It was my first time seeing the show and I'm so glad I went! It was AMAZING! I haven't been able to stop singing to the soundtrack ever since! If Wicked comes to a theatre near you I highly recommend seeing it! I also took up swimming on Sunday with a friend.  I forgot how much I love swimming and it's exercise I enjoy which is a plus.  Although going to the theatre and swimming at the weekend with a cold hasn't exactly helped and made it go away yet but totally worth it! Amazing weekend. :)

4) What Inspires Me Right Now
Watching Grave Encounters and this new song that's perfect for rebellious witches:


16 Jun 2014

Ready. Set. Write: The Plague

Ready. Set. Write! is a summer writing intensive that is hosted during the months of June, July, and August by Jaime Morrow, Erin Funk, Alison Miller and Katy Upperman.  If you want to participate you come up with your own writing goals for those three months and check in with a short update every Monday.  This year RSW starts today until August 25th.

HOW I DID ON LAST WEEK'S GOALS:
Not a great start.  As soon as RSW began and I had all my goals set out... I got a stinking cold that still isn't gone so I actually did nothing all last week.  No chores, no writing, just complete rest.  I feel better than I did but I'm still easily getting wiped out and a pesky after-cough is developing.

MY GOAL(S) FOR THIS WEEK:
I'll stick to the ones I made for last week since I didn't achieve them.  Edit a chapter of Inside the Broom Closet and go through short story.

A FAVOURITE LINE FROM MY STORY OR ONE WORD/PHRASE THAT SUMS UP WHAT I WROTE/REVISED:
"Helpful government is an oxymoron.  Like intelligent politician."

THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE I FACED THIS WEEK:
Trying to get stuff done when ill.  Challenge accepted.  Challenge failed.  Barney Stinson would be disappointed.

SOMETHING I LOVE ABOUT MY WIP:
My little hippy Hannah.  With flowers and dreadlocks in her hair:



11 Jun 2014

What's Up Wednesday

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly feature created by Jaime Morrow and Erin L. Funk. Perfect for readers and writers who want to share what they've been up to on a weekly basis and right now the place to share your goals.

1) What I'm Reading
Shock horror... I actually read more of Cress this week!

2) What I'm Writing
Did some more chilling out with Nostalgic project.  They're stories I wrote when I was a teenager and had the sudden desire to start writing them up and editing the crap out of them for the fun of it.  It's been a way for me to relax.  Also working on the projects I'm focusing on for Ready. Set. Write! which you can find here if you're interested.

3) What Else I've Been Up To
Honestly not much.  I've enjoyed doing very little at home except for writing and reading.  We had a big tidy up and clean up at the weekend which I usually do little at a time but getting it all done in one go has helped me relax a bit knowing there's nothing else to be done for a while.

4) What Inspires Me Right Now
One of the reasons I signed up for Ready. Set. Write was to keep motivated and inspired to write.  It really helped keep me going and since 2014 has been a good year for writing I want to keep it up as much as possible.

9 Jun 2014

Ready. Set. Write!

I'm so psyched that Jaime Morrow, Erin Funk, Alison Miller and Katy Upperman have decided to do another Ready. Set. Write! this year for the summer months.  For anyone who isn't sure, Ready. Set. Write! is a summer writing intensive that is hosted during the months of June, July, and August.  If you want to participate you come up with your own writing goals for those three months and check in with a short update every Monday.  This year RSW starts today until August 25th.

Overall goals:
  • Keep writing the second draft of Inside the Broom Closet.
  • Tidy up entry for British Fantasy Society's Short Story Competition and get it submitted by 30th June.
  • Plan something new.  I feel like messing around with some new victims characters.  See if I can play around with some SNIs for July Camp NaNo.
Week One goals:
  • Finish the current chapter revision for Inside the Broom Closet.
  • Revise short story entry one last time.

Feel like taking part this year? What are your writing goals for the summer months?

5 Jun 2014

What's Up Wednesday

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly feature created by Jaime Morrow and Erin L. Funk. Perfect for readers and writers who want to share what they've been up to on a weekly basis and right now the place to share your goals.

1) What I'm Reading
... Let's not go there again.

2) What I'm Writing
I finished off another round of revisions of Beast Inside and decided that maybe it was time to see if it could pass the test with my awesome beta readers.  Even a maths test wasn't this nerve-wracking! Is it just me being a wimp or is sending your draft off to other people to read one of the most terrifying things ever? To keep distracted I started working on the long hand draft for Inside the Broom Closet and might try going back to my ghost duology.  I did those two drafts for NaNoWriMo but there are a lot of things that aren't working so it's time to go back to plotting and planning. Mwahaha. *twiddles moustache*

3) What Else I've Been Up To
NO MORE MATHS! Weeeeeeeeeee! Seriously, all I'm up to apart from writing is copious amounts of chilling outI did my maths test on Saturday, passed, and that is it! My skills tests for Literacy and Maths are all done and I'm officially starting my teacher training course in September.  Another step closer!

4) What Inspires Me Right Now
Are you ready for the cheese? Passing.  Getting things done.  Achieving things I've been working towards for ages.   Seeing others achieve their goals.  WE CAN DO IT! =D