The Creativity Corner: Summer 2017

Summer ends tomorrow, and what a busy season it’s been. Traveling, sightseeing, getting a head cold (OK, that wasn’t fun, but it did happen), and through it all I managed to get a lot of writing and reading done. So despite the busyness, it was a productive and satisfying summer. 🙂

Without further ado, let’s launch into the Creativity Corner for a recap of what I’ve been writing and reading, and other related happenings, since the end-of-spring edition in June.
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The Creativity Corner: Spring 2017

Can you believe that summer is here? 😮 It still feels like I was in Iceland last week. How on Earth has time zipped by so quickly??

Since a new season has begun, it’s time for an update on the past season’s creative happenings. And after a winter where I struggled with anxiety for a few weeks and my confidence in my writing hit rock-bottom, I’m happy to say that spring was a more productive, inspiring, and emotionally healthy season. It wasn’t free of bumps, but I’m moving forward and focused on new projects.

New projects?? What about The Keeper’s Curse? Or the novella? Yeah… I’ll explain what’s happening with them, too. But first…
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The Creativity Corner: Winter 2017

It feels weird to post a wrap-up of a winter’s worth writing, reading, and other creative happenings on the second day of spring. (This is the new “writing monthly update” series I had mentioned last month, btw.) But the truth is, I’ve procrastinated on this post for a couple weeks now, and not due to lack of time. Instead, I’ve been feeling anything but enthusiastic or confident about writing lately.

(Btw, my latest DIY MFA post went live last week. Something funky happened with the blog post announcement, so click here to read the article at DIY MFA.)

The good news is, I’m now taking steps that can hopefully help me regain that confidence and lead to a better, more productive spring. I’ll touch on that, as well as the progress I’ve made so far with The Novella (my new writing project) and the books I’ve read so far this year. Also, since this is the first Creative Corner, any feedback on the content and/or setup will be greatly appreciated. 🙂
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Chronicling The Craft: On Beta-Readings, New Writing Projects, and the Future of This Series

Chronicling The Craft banner

On Beta-Readings, New Writing Projects, and the Future of This Series

Chronicling The Craft is a series where I share my experience with working on my YA fantasy novel THE KEEPER’S CURSE. These articles alternate between progress reports, fun WIP-related content, and writing / revising / editing tips. Today’s post serves an update on TKC’s beta-reading stage and the beginning of Draft #1 of “The Novella.”

Starting a new phase of the writing process is always exciting. And nerve-racking. And scary. But mostly exciting. However, what makes this “new beginnings” Chronicle unique from past ones is that it covers not just one writing project, but TWO!

Today’s Chronicle is mostly updates on my YA fantasy novel The Keeper’s Curse and my fantasy novella-in-progress, which is tentatively titled The Novella. (Not very imaginative, but I don’t have any title ideas yet. *lol*) I’ll also share my plans for the upcoming round of Chronicles – and if you’re interested, I could use your help with deciding what “fun stuff” to share during the progress reports.

Also, because I saw the movie “Moana” recently, I declare today as Moana GIF Day. ❤

moana-ocean

Ready? Let’s start with…
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Chronicling The Craft: FIRST DRAFT – DONE!

What’s Next, and A Question For You

Chapters Completed: 35

Chapters In Progress: 0

Chapters Not Started: 0

“Chronicling The Craft” is an article series where I share my experience with writing my current work-in-progress (WIP), which is a fantasy novel. Every 5,000 words, I let readers know what I’ve accomplished since the previous article and share advice, discoveries, techniques, etc. Besides the word count in each article title, a “chapter ticker” at the top also tracks my progress as I use the skip-around / “writercopter” method to write the novel. Today’s installment celebrates the completion of the first draft.

SURPRISE! 😀  I had originally promised to post a new Chronicle when I hit the 115,000-word mark. However, between various blogging commitments and how quickly (on my standards) I was cranking out the remaining chapters, I decided to wait on a novel-writing update until it reached the most important milestone of them all. And now – 25 months and 132,000 words after I started with an outline and this crazy idea of a quest story with magic, life-size Faeries who can fly, shadow demons, and a female protagonist who is her own worst enemy – the first draft is finally DONE!  Continue reading

Chronicling The Craft: 20,000 Words

Textbooks + Statistics = Back To School?

Chapters In Progress: 5

Chapters Completed: 4

The writing vacation was a huge success! Instead of taking almost 2 months to reach the next milestone (as it did last time), it took less than one week to go from 15,000 words to 20,000 (or 21,000+, to be accurate). Honestly, it felt more like shooting from one benchmark to the next, because of the shorter span of time. I guess that’s what happens when you a) plan to spend a large amount of time concentrating on your work-in-progress, and b) are “in the flow” during each sit-down. And even though I purposely set no concrete goals for this week, I can’t explain how proud and excited I am with what I accomplished in a few days.  Continue reading

Chronicling The Craft: 15,000 Words

Getting The First Chapter Right(ish) The Second Time Around

Chapters In Progress: 5

Chapters Completed: 2

Wow. It’s been over 2 months since the previous Chronicle. And yes, it’s a sign that progress on the novel has been slow, but not because I’ve been struggling with the writing. The words seem to flow right through me during each sit-down, which is wonderful. Rather, this summer has just been very busy. I had made plans for social gatherings and day-trips on several weekends, and really enjoyed it all. However, because I have a full-time job and other responsibilities and commitments, I only have time to write at night and on the weekends. And with most of the summer activities planned for weekends, it has cut down on my creative time even more. Continue reading

Chronicling The Craft: 10,000 Words

Beginnings, Completions, and “Splitting” Headaches

Chapters Completed: 1

Chapters In Progress: 5

Things have been busy since the last Chronicle in April, both for creative (open mic nights, Massachusetts Poetry Festival, and juggling all of my projects) and personal reasons. This translated to less time than expected for novel-writing. But that’s OK. A packed schedule will happen once in a while. What matters is that I squeezed in time when I could and moved along with the novel regardless. Continue reading