Wednesday, September 30

WIP Wednesday


WOAH! I can't believe it's already Wednesday! You'd think I'd know what day it was, you know, since I'm so organized, but somehow the days always catch me off guard. It's rather sad. The only days I seem to know are Sunday (because I have to go back to school... UGH) and Thursday, because I go home for the weekend, LOL!

But on to my manuscript...Unfortunately I haven't gotten much done. Well, in all honesty, I've done nothing. I tried to work last weekend but I was so busy with life that writing took a back seat... Then when I did get time to write I was too tired. My eyes were rebelling and I ended up falling asleep with my laptop perched precariously on my chest. BUT! I plan on rectifying that this weekend. Due to various things, I'm home for the weekend already! YAY! I will explain a little bit more of why I'm home in my next post. Don't fear, I'm not in any sort of trouble. Snorts. Can you imagine? Me, in trouble? HAH! I think the worst I've ever done qualifies as PG. I wonder if I'll get kicked out of the Young People Group for being so "boring" ? I don't know. I think I'm pretty darn interesting. Shrugs. I just don't like a lot of things other people my age do. Ah well. I like myself!

In other news, Stupid English Class has reached a new level of terrible. I won't go into details because I could write a whole essay on it, but suffice it to say, I do believe I will be making a complaint to the Human Rights Lady in our University. It's that bad. No, he hasn't picked on me personally, but it's only a matter of time. Besides, even if he never picks on me, I can't stand to see him be so cruel to others. And yet, some of my classmates love him! Just goes to show you how far society has sunk.

Uhhm, what else is new? Well, apparently it's supposed to snow on Saturday. Sighs. If it does, I will take pictures to prove it to you. Then we can throw a pity party for me and my fellow Albertan friends.

So this weekend I have very little work to do. Then again, that's to my way of thinking. I'm hoping to get a bunch done tonight before I go to sleep and then do the rest tomorrow. We'll see how that goes. I may just have to turn off the Internet for long periods of time so I'm not tempted to blog or Facebook/ Twitter until I'm done. It seems whenever I get home I go on "vacation" mode and my brain refuses to work. It becomes the typical fat lazy guy on the couch eating chips and watching TV while sipping a questionable liquid.
But anyway, I hope everyone has had a good week so far!
Welcome to all of my new readers! I hope you enjoy your visits!

I'm going to open up the floor again for you guys to ask me questions! Absolutely anything you want to know is fair game! I always like getting to know the person behind the blog, so I feel it's only fair that you guys get the same option!

And, my question for you guys is....

How is your WIP coming along? Hit any snags? Have any brilliant lightbulb moments?

Tuesday, September 29

How I'm Feeling...

I think this says it all...



If I haven't responded to your comments, emails, or your blog posts, I'm not ignoring you or avoiding you. I will try and get back to you either tonight or tomorrow sometime. I'm just on the chaotic side of crazy busy right now.



I hope you are all having a splendid week! Have you done anything exciting? Learned anything new? Have a funny story to share?

Sunday, September 27

Thank God For Blankets


The weather is a-changin'. I just got back from my cousin Alec's 7th birthday party and nearly froze my tush off running from the truck to the house. When we left at 4pm it was mid 20's. I was wearing shorts, a tank top shirt thing and a light sweater and I was perfectly comfortable.

Hah! I should have known the weather would change only a few hours later. Now I'm buried in my blankets wearing full pajama pants, socks, and a long sleeve shirt. Man, I've got to get prepared for this snow thing. I'm surprised it hasn't shown up already. Then again, we just had the hottest first day of fall on record. Maybe it's going to be a warm winter? Sighs. A girl can dream.

Saturday, September 26

Speaking of meltdowns...


I had one tonight. It was about math.

Contrary to popular belief, I did well in high school (mid 80's). But apparently once I was finished with math, it 'poofed' out of my mind, never to return. And quite frankly, it can stay away. There's a reason I'm an English major, History minor... BECAUSE I LOATHE MATH WITH EVERY FIBRE OF MY BEING.

Ahem.

So, how are you? Are you a fellow math-hater too? Or was some other subject the bane of your existence?




















Friday, September 25

How do you write and go to college without going nuts?

*Question from B.E. Sanderson*

Who's to say I haven't already gone crazy? LOL! Alright, but in all seriousness, I do think I've lost it a few times. I've had several meltdowns over the past few years, more so during my first year when I was stuck with 3 bimbos masquerading as college students. Oh wait... I just described most of my peers...

Anyway... I haven't had any meltdowns recently, but that has to do more with me being mentally prepared for the task at hand, rather than my work load diminishing. It also makes a huge difference if you live with people you can stand. With this being my 3rd year, I generally know what to expect and therefore can prepare for it before it happens. And although that makes perfectly logical sense-- at least to me-- I know a lot of post-secondary students in their 3rd year who still look like lost little freshmen. They still don't do their homework on time. They still don't know how to properly cite a paper, whether in APA, Chicago or MLA. And they still skip 50% of their classes. ARGH! And they wonder why they fail?! Why they keep coming back, I'll never know.

So, to answer your question B.E. I am probably the most organized person you will ever meet when it comes to school. My first week of school I got all of my outlines together and colour coded each class. I then went through each outline and added the exam dates and due dates of things into my organizer; highlighted of course, in their specific colour. And no, I don't stop there.



I'm a list person. I make lists for everything I need to do. I guess I like seeing what needs doing and I like the satisfaction I get once I cross something out. So once the due dates for things are written into my calendar, I go through each class and figure out what I need to read/do for the next week. I then write that down on a big piece of paper--my list paper.

This week's list


Now, I feel I also most point out that I don't just do my homework one week in advance. No, no, no. My first week back was so hectic because I did the readings for the next two weeks in all of my classes. So by the end of the first weekend of school, I was already doing work for mid September. Yes, I know that seems insane and I must seem like a real go-getter. But think of it this way. If I finish the readings and other work early, I have the ability to start my essays or big projects early, thereby giving me 3 weeks to do each thing without panicking at the last second to do it. It also gives me the freedom to have off days where I can just sleep without worrying that I need to read such and such chapter for tomorrow. And, at the end of the semester, it gives me more time to study for final exams.

Now, because I'm sure you're all so curious, I will give you a rundown of my schedule for next week.

ANTHRO-- Read Chapter 3 (74 pages)
Watch the movie I missed on Monday (funeral day...)

Stupid English-- Write journals (8)
Do a stylistic Analysis of a piece of literature and write essay on it
(Never sure what else is due in this class because it's the crazy teacher and he didn't give us due dates for anything. So I have to do this day by day).

English Theory-- Read Chapter 5 (42 pages)

GNED-- Read Case #1 (63 pages)
Answer questions regarding essay (will take about 2 hours)

HIST-- Read 3 articles on the witch hunt (total pages- 111)
Write weekly reading essay
Start compiling notes about Defiled Trades & Social Outcasts. Basically, write the essay (book review) in point form. This is for my midterm. We are supposed to read the book and then write a book review on it (6 pages).

There is more that I have to do, but I won't know about it till I go to the first class of the week.
So yeah, that's basically how I remain sane. I organize the bejesus out of everything so that I know exactly what I have to do and when. It generally takes me from Monday- Thursday night to complete most of that and then I get the weekends to do whatever I want (ie, WRITE). Plus, if I didn't write, I think I'd be worse off. Although writing can be stressful, it's what I do to relax. Sad, I know, but I figure you guys understand. It's a way for me to escape all the work and disappear. Some people play x-box, some people watch tv/movies. I write (and read, but I think those two go hand in hand...)

Anyway... Unfortunately, I still have some more work to do today, but it's not a lot, so I'm hoping to get that done within the next 2 hours. In fact, I think I'm going to go do that now. I will be back later with another post!

Wednesday, September 23

WIP Wednesday


It's that time of the week again folks! WIP Wednesday! Yay! I'm sure you've all just been dying to hear what I've been up to! And yes, I know it's rather late in the night to be posting this but as the saying goes, it's better late than never!

Anyway, I once again have not written much during the week. It seems I only get to write on the weekends, which sucks. Oh well. My parents are paying for school, so it's more important. But anywho, last weekend I edited 3 more scenes, one of which I think explains my hero's character extremely well. In fact, I LOVE that scene. I only had to change some very minor things (related to a plot twist I changed slightly in other chapters) and take out some of the flowery description so that it sounded 100% like a guy. I thought it was good at that before, but now... Now it's wonderful! I found myself reading it instead of editing it, which is a good sign in my opinion. It means I'm enjoying reading it even though I know what's going to happen.

So this weekend I plan on editing more scenes and building up some of the minor characters so that their personality shines without me having to say a whole lot about them. This weekend will also be tricky because I'm coming upon the character (Madeline) I have decided to delete, so I'm going to have to start deleting a lot of that and rewriting the scene with this other character I have (Katherine). Wow, this sounds really confusing. Ah, well. That's really it for now. My brain is kinda dead from school. I may think of more stuff later. Who knows.

But to end tonight, I thought I'd open up the floor to any and all questions you guys have. They can be about writing, school, or anything really. However, I do have the right to not answer, LOL!

And my question for you guys...

So how are your stories coming along?

Tuesday, September 22

ZzzzzZzzzz

I'm way too tired to come up with anything even mildly coherent for today's post. I'm emotionally drained, exhausted from classes, and tired of my overabundance of homework.
I still have lots to do today and it's almost 9pm. But for now I think I'm going to go make some dinner. I made salad earlier but it just wasn't substantial enough to make much of a difference. Plus that was like, 4 hours ago now... Wow. Time flies when you have loads to do.
I was planning on reading another 83 pages of my Defiled Trades & Social Outcasts book for history. Ahh, maybe after some dinner I can get some of that done.

Anyway, thank you for all the hugs. I hope your week is going better than mine. See you tomorrow with another WIP Wednesday.

Sunday, September 20

The Merits of Humour in the Classroom

In lieu of my Patrick Stewart look-alike professor and his already widely popular beliefs-- HAH-- I have decided to post about my other English professor this semester. Randy we shall call him. Because that happens to be his name, LOL! Clever, hm? Sighs. Cut me some slack, it's the weekend and my brain is taking a much needed breather for 5 minutes while I write this post.

Anyways, Randy is my English Literary Theory professor. And yes, the subject matter IS as boring as it sounds. More so, actually. So if you feel like giving me any sympathy it would be much appreciated and oh--so--desperately desired.

But moving on, Randy has an interesting sense of humour. To be honest, I'm not sure I can truly capture him to share with all of you. Suffice it to say, he's funny. He makes getting up for my morning class that much more acceptable. He also makes the subject matter that much more tolerable. He also doesn't take himself too seriously, thank God. English professors with sticks shoved up their bums are the absolute worst to deal with. Yes, as hard as it may be to believe, they are worse than semi-stoned Philosophy professors. And for the record, I've had two of those. Yep. Two.

TWO!

Anywho... Randy shows his casual stance on the classroom and his own discipline in various ways. He makes up words at random; he discusses Lord of the Rings at length (claiming, of course, that it is the best story, EVER); and tells really bad jokes that make you just want to shake your head in pity.

For example: My first class with him he said that the syllabus was really Imporbant. I think I'll let that one sink in a little.

-whistles-

Imporbant. Any ideas what it means? No? Important but boring= Imporbant.

While going over the introduction of our textbook, he came across the word Despite. Simple enough, and yet he spent 10 minutes on this word, claiming that it was an ugly word. "De and spite. Spite. God that's a hideous word! It's like it came out of MORDOR!"

Ahem.

And last but not least...

We meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Well, in Thursday's class he had this to say... "Hello everyone! Gosh. Thursday already, huh? Wow.... Do you remember Tuesday? I do. I remember Tuesday vividly. I remember it almost like it was yesterday..."

And with that, I will let you go.
I hope your weekend is going well!

Saturday, September 19

Tending the Writer's Emotional Health

*Title of post nabbed from super awesome workshop in Washington by author, Joanne Rock*

As writers we are faced with numerous challenges. We have to deal with writers block, eye strain, headaches, back aches, and carpal tunnel; criticism, derision, fear, despair and rejection. And all for what? The slim chance to see our book, the baby we slaved over for weeks, months and sometimes even years, on the shelves at Barnes & Noble or on the e-shelves of Amazon?

But then, that does sound rather fantastic, doesn’t it? To see your name printed so neatly on that shiny new cover, decorating the shelf. And yes, you’re right. The shelf would have been lonely and empty if your book was not gracing it with its wondrous presence.

Or perhaps you write simply because you love it. Because it feeds your soul and calms those pesky little demons who threaten to sneak out and control you if you don’t release your pent up imagination. But even if you fall into this category, which I think most writers do, there is still that niggle in the back of your mind, the one that whispers, “This could be published. It’s good enough. My story is good enough. It should be shared with the world!”

Wouldn’t it be grand?

I agree. It would be. And with that end goal in mind we tend to ignore, or at least accept, all the eye strain, the sore necks, and all of the cranky, sleepy Muses who absolutely refuse to work when we need them to. They strangely sound a lot like your children and your husband, don’t they? Muses are finicky creatures, who like to work only when they feel like it. Even if that means its 3 am and they just woke you up from a lovely dream. Your characters are the same way. Like stubborn actors in a play, they tend to be a little melodramatic and pigheaded. But we still love them anyway. Just like we still love our children and our husbands. Most of the time.

Being the director of these persnickety actors and an even fussier Muse, we are responsible for a lot. We need to be in tune with their emotional health at all times. Are they feeling up to doing a sad scene today? Is my heroine still mad at my hero for the dumb thing he said yesterday? Will they play nice if I ask them to? And so on.

But, as the director, we never seem to worry about our own emotional health. We never stop to ask ourselves if we’re feeling up to working on a sad scene today, or if we’re still mad at the hero for the really dumb thing he said to the heroine yesterday. And why not? Aren’t we just as important as our characters and our Muse? Shouldn’t we, as the director of all this mayhem, deserve a little break every once and a while? Even if it is just to ask ourselves how we’re doing?

Indeed, we do.

So, my fellow writers, sit back and listen carefully to what I’m about to tell you.

You are just as important as your characters and your Muse. Even more so actually, because without you, the show can’t go on. But don’t despair! There are some tricks to keeping yourself healthy and well while still writing.

1. Have a good writing space-- This varies from person to person, so there is no concrete idea here of what is a good writing space. Find what works for you and make it as comfortable for yourself as possible. Make sure there is good lighting and enough support for your back and wrists.

2. Eat healthy-- Rather than grabbing that bag of chips, stop and cut up some veggies to snack on while you work. It’ll make you feel better overall and afterwards you won’t feel guilty.

3. Drink lots of water-- I know writers tend to like caffeine, for the obvious reasons, but try to drink water as well.

4. Get up and move around-- Sitting, hunched over the desk all day will do no one any good, least of all you. Take breaks and wander around. Go outside and walk around the block, or go do the laundry! Yes, I know. That one sounds like so much fun. But really, it’ll help.

5. Talk to people who actually exist outside of your mind-- Trust me on this one. We’re crazy enough as it is without foregoing normal conversation with real people. Don’t make it worse.

6. Sleep!-- I know this one can be difficult, what with children, husbands, jobs, and school getting in the way all of the time, but sleep comes before writing. Trying to write while sleep deprived is the quickest way to a burnout. And no one wants to see a writer during a burnout. Even the thought of it terrifies me.

*Side note. Is anyone else imagining a crazy eyed, wild woman running around, frothing at the mouth while she clutches a pen? No? Okay, maybe it’s just me.*

7. Reward yourself!-- Reach the word goal of the month? Write a really hard scene? Finish your novel? Then you deserve a reward! Try not to reward yourself with food (remember, we’re trying to be healthier!) but perhaps go to the local bookstore and binge on a much more invigorating snack? Or maybe you could buy that comfy desk chair you’ve had your eye on for the last 6 months. Go for it! Why not? You deserve it!

And last but not least...

8. Simply enjoy yourself-- Whatever you’re doing, wherever you are, make the most of your opportunities and have fun! Be creative, be wacky and be wild. Why not? If anyone questions why you’re talking to yourself in the store or why you’re face is always plastered with a goofy grin or why you always laugh at the jokes that no one else does, just tell them you’re a writer. Crazy is part of the job description.

Don’t we have the absolute best job ON THE PLANET?

Wednesday, September 16

Update

Just wanted to drop in and give you all a quick update. First: some of you may have noticed that my "Currently Reading" section has not changed at all. To be honest, I haven't even started that book but have been reading school stuff and various other authors. I will try to update that this weekend.

Secondly: today in my "stupid English class," as it will be called from now on, I learned that apparently you are not a writer if you can't take criticism.

Blinking.

What do you all think? Are you not a writer if you can't take criticism?

WIP Wednesday

Wow, is it already Wednesday? Crazy! I didn't even think about a WIP Wednesday post until I spotted it on another blog! Good thing I saw it, hmm?

Anyway, I haven't written anything for my story since Sunday. I'm sad about it, but that's okay. I got loads done last weekend and I hope to get even more done this weekend!

But moving on. I finished a huge, pivotal scene in the story and I quite like it! I think it is witty and interesting and it really gives a lot of insight to the heroine and another major character and how they interact with each other and other people. After that I tackled revisions on a scene I had written back in, oh, I don't know. April? Perhaps? Well, I was worried about reading it and working it back into the story, mainly because I wasn't sure if it was actually any good. Luckily I had nothing to worry about! I still love the scene! Yay!

While writing that scene I also realized some things about other characters that I can't wait to work in! I'm not sure if I'm supposed to be so excited about the eventual revision of my whole manuscript, but I am. I'm slowly inching my way closer to the end and I'm really excited about it.

How is your WIP coming along?

The Biggest Sin in Writing

I know everyone has heard this over and over again, but I figure I would post a small blurb about it as well. What is the number one, golden rule to writing? Don't Confuse Your Readers!

Say it with me now... Don't Confuse Your Readers!

In all honesty, it's shocking how many novels I've read where I got so lost it was impossible to find my way back out. And trust me, I'm not one to get lost in words easily. I also remember a lot of information (especially if I find it interesting). So for me to get lost is just sad. Really, really sad.

So here's a quote from the 2009 movie, I Love You Man that I thought worked perfectly with the theme of this post. By the way, if you haven't seen it, you should. My roomie Meg and I watched it last week and I love it! It is so cute! A little inappropriate at parts, but nothing a teenager can't watch.

Peter- "I will see you there or I will see you on another time."

Sydney- "That was very confusing, I don't know if you are going to show up or not."

=D

Friday, September 11

WTH Post

Yep, that's right folks, I apparently do like humiliation. Lucky you! I mean, it's not every day you get to witness my stupid actions. Well, okay, perhaps some of you are that privileged, but for the rest of you I've decided to post -yet again- about my rather embarrassing acts.

Oh, I know you're all excited to hear this. I can practically hear the little squeak of the springs as you sit bouncing in your chairs.

Alright, here we go...

So Saturday my family and I went to the Highland Games. Unfortunately for me, my parents decided that we needed to get up early to get there on time. Shudders.

Anyway, Friday night I had the plan that I would be in bed by 1am and be asleep shortly thereafter. Well, that was all fine and dandy until I actually lay down and tried to sleep for the night. It didn't happen the way I planned... At all.

Apparently my brain was a little bit more active than the rest of me. Rather than lying there all docile and quiet as I wanted it to do, it jumped from thought to thought, never once slowing down or giving me a break. Imagine a 3 year old hopped up on sugar Easter morning and then times that by 10 and you may have reached the activity level of my thoughts. Not kidding.

Now, of course, my thoughts couldn't be logical, or even sane. No, no, no. Of course not. Why on earth would that happen? My last name is Murphy after all. Aren't we supposed to be the epitome of craziness, and bad luck? Well, in my case (and likely the majority of my family's cases) I fit that mould. At least the crazy part.

But I digress. My thoughts that night were not only chaotic, but slightly insane. They jumped from ridiculous thought to ridiculous thought, from dancing potatoes (there they are again) to giant man eating slugs. Don't ask me, because I honestly DO NOT KNOW. Now, if that was all that occurred during the night, I might have moved on, chalking it all up to being over-tired and stressed about school. But no. I'm not that lucky. Remember people, the last name is MURPHY!

Instead, I tried to argue with myself about the merits of going to sleep. Unfortunately, it is difficult to reason with your own thoughts. Especially when they are so wholly unpredictable. In the end it came down to Me vs. Them. The them of course being my thoughts.

I lost.

Now, I imagine not all of you are this crazy and therefore do not understand exactly what I'm talking about. And for you lucky, lucky souls (or unlucky, I don't know, insanity has its advantages) I'm going to give you a snippet of the "conversation" I had with myself Friday night.


Me: "Okay, time to sleep. Need to sleep. Getting up in exactly 3 hours. Must sleep."

Thoughts: "Nah... OH! Nah... nah...ba-NAH-na. Banana. I'm hungry. The banana's downstairs are ripe and yellowy - Slugs. They look like slugs. Hm. Harry Potter used slugs for potions. They bubble if you put salt on them. I think. I bet that pisses them off. I wonder if they envision revenge. Do slugs have thoughts? They'd eat people. Yep, eat them. That'd be their revenge. Man eating slugs. But only in British Columbia. Slugs the size of your foot they've got."

Me: "NOOOO! SHH! MUST SLEEP! NO THOUGHTS! NOPE, ZIP IT!"

Thoughts: "Zip it, zip it gooooood. Huh, you know, the zipper on my black hoodie is broken - should tell Mum.... Mum's the word is such a funny saying. I wonder how it came into use. Have I used that in my story? Ahh I need to work on chapter 11 tomorrow night. I hope I have time after the Games."

Me: "NOOO! GO TO SLEEP! YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO WRITE ANYTHING IF YOU'RE TOO TIRED AFTER THE GAMES FROM NOT SLEEPING!"

Thoughts: "I wonder if they'll have potatoes at the Games. I mean, I know they're popular in Ireland, but Scotland had them too. Huh, I hope there are lots of the Highland dancers there. AHH imagine a potato dancing around in a kilt -thoughts snicker- Would they have eyes? How would they not trip over their fellow Tatters on stage? Googlie eyes. That's it. - thoughts roar with laughter-"

I think that's enough Me vs. Them for today. In fact, I'm just going to let that whole conversation sink in for a moment. Marinate a little, if you will.

-whistles while rocking on the balls of my feet-

Well anywho... did you notice I questioned how the potatoes would see but not how they'd dance? Apparently the coherence of my thoughts only goes so far.

But anyway, I've got a few more embarrassing tidbits to share.

Now as most of you know, I am not the most coordinated person on the planet. In fact, I'm not coordinated at all. My parents blame this on my inability to watch where I'm going or to pay attention to what I'm doing. I then subsequently blame THAT on my inability to focus on anything other than the characters and stories running amok in my head.

Well, some days are worse than others, especially when heavy lifting and moving are involved. So in other words, last Sunday, which was move-in day for University, was an extremely uncoordinated day. I fumbled boxes, tripped over smooth sidewalks, banged my head on the wall when it leaped into my way, and choked on water when I took a drink and forgot to swallow.
Sighs.

But none of those were as bad as the Kitchen Incident.

Being the tallest roommate in the apartment (I'm only 5'6 but the others could pass as pixies) I took the two highest cupboards.

While putting my food away in the cupboard (above the red arrow) I reached down to grab food from the counter top. However, upon its descent, my elbow connected with the corner of the microwave cabinet which then in turn, caused me to poke myself in the eye with my finger.

Yep, that's right folks. Not only did I bang my "funny bone" but I then managed to poke myself in the EYE.

Some days, I wonder how I've made it to age 19.


Alright, one more stupid event of the past week and then I'll leave you all to your laughter.

While talking to Christopher on MSN a week ago, I came across a word in a blog that I did not know. Unfortunately, I cannot remember the word itself, but I remember what happened.

Too lazy to grab my dictionary (which was packed away) I asked Christopher if he knew the word. A moment later he responded with FIRE DRILL.

Confused, I eyed the word in question for a moment before deciding that my boyfriend was being an ass, in a joking manner of course.

Taking his answer as a hint to look it up myself I pulled up Internet Explorer and searched for the word. The definition I arrived at was not about fire or drills and certainly not about the two together. Frowning now, I went back to the conversation window to jokingly tell him off. It was then, just as my cell phone vibrated beside me with "Christopher" flashing boldly across the screen, that I realized that he hadn't been answering my question, but in fact had been telling me that he was having a fire drill at school.

It took me 5 whole minutes to realize it.

I'll leave you with that for today. I think I've embarrassed myself and worried you all enough for the day. Just remember, craziness is a sign of creativity. And since you are all creative in some form or another (writers, painters and graphic design arteests) you all have some form of crazy in you. Don't lie to me. I'm on to you.


Eyes you all.

*Picture from 1st year of college. The layout of the kitchen is the same.*
** Yes, before any of you ask, the whole "thought" conversation DID take place. When I woke up the next morning (yes, I eventually fell asleep) I wrote down jot notes to remember.**

Thursday, September 10

WIP Wednesday


Hello everyone, sorry about the lack of posts recently. I promise once I get back into the swing of things I'll post more often. Promise. You can even get my Mum to hold me at glare-point (hah, rather than gun point, get it? Man I need to sleep...)
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Sadly, I haven't done much with my story since last Wednesday. I know over the past few days I probably could have written something, but I'm still not used to being back in school where there is so much noise. I'm a heavy sleeper and I've been woken up numerous times by the over exuberant screams of the freshmen and the cynical taunts and catcalls from the seniors. And I'm on the 5th floor.
.
Sighs.
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At least I'm out of range for "eggings." I hope. Well, come to think about it, if they can get an egg up here to the 5th floor, then they deserve to.
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Anyway, the clinical feel of my room hasn't helped either. Luckily I've covered a lot of my room in beautiful posters and funny little snippets of the "Get Fuzzy" cartoon. I shall try and post pictures soon!
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But... I've gotten off track. I know I haven't written much (maybe 3 pages) but I feel better about the story. I'm hoping once I get some homework done tomorrow that I'll have the whole weekend to write. (FYI I start my 3rd year tomorrow. Wish me luck!)
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Oh, and I think you'll all be happy to know that I'm feeling optimistic about writing while in school. Everyone may have to deal with me waving them away but I can do school and write. I know I can. It's just going to be a lot of scheduling and work. And probably some whiny posts. Sorry!
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I'm hoping I can leave the weekends open to reading for school (and little assignments) and writing my story. I know it won't always be that way, but I'm going to try...
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Crossing fingers.
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So how are your stories coming along?
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*I just looked at last week's WIP post and actually, I have come a long way since then. About 3000 words (not bad considering) and I worked my way out of that sticky situation by deleting that whole character. I know I talked about it another post, that's why I was getting confused!*

Calgary Highland Games

As you all know, my family and I went to the Calgary Highland Games on Saturday. I'm finally getting around to putting up a few pictures for you guys! I hope you enjoy.


Mock fighting

Gearing up for a fight

Hiding from arrows!

She killed him (hah, kidding!)

Not the greatest picture.
It was very sunny and very windy.

Neato tattoo

Shooting people (not for real...)

Caber toss

The guys hanging around waiting for their turn to throw

Getting ready to lift

Throwing...

My Uncle Rob's leg.
I think the only reason this was taken was to show how
MASSIVE the legs are on my Dad's side of the family.
(My Dad's are just a little smaller than this).

Adorable little boys walking around.
For some reason this image makes me think of England and Scotland.
Anyone else get that feeling?
Honestly, for me a whole story popped into my mind from this image.
Has that ever happened to you before?
Anywho, I think those are probably the best pictures my Mum snapped. She took a billion (mostly of the caber toss) so if you'd like to see some more of those just let me know! Also, if you like kilts (the patterns etc...) and would like to see the million different ones we saw, just let me know, I'd be happy to put them up for you!

Tuesday, September 8

Tuesday

Sighs.
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So as you have probably noticed, I haven't posted in awhile. I wish I could claim that I'm going to post right now to make it up to you guys, but I'm really not feeling it. I'm really tired and not exactly in a very chipper mood right now. I will however, tell you that move-in on Sunday went smoothly. Got up freakishly early (6:30am), loaded up the truck (Mum has pictures, I'll try and post them this weekend when I go home) and then drove into Calgary and moved me in.
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I'm on the 5th floor this year and in a different building. It's weird. I haven't gotten confused and tried to go into the other building...yet. But give me a few days, I'll probably try it. I was on the same floor of A building for two years, so when I'm really tired I may forget I don't live there anymore... Anyway, I got a slightly smaller room but a bigger closet. So I'm happy. But yeah, met the new roommates: Brandi and Jenna. Dunno what to think yet, none of us have really hung out or even really talked. But at least I have my Megs.
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All in all it went pretty quickly. After move-in we went out for lunch and then went grocery shopping. After that my parents left me for yet another year. Sighs. I'm not sure a 19 year old girl is supposed to miss her parents this much (especially when I see at least one of them tomorrow for my wrist appointment).
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Oh, and instead of using our ID cards to get into the apartment, we now have these cool black key things. Mine is pictured below. What you have to do is stick it into the keyhole (also pictured below) and wait until the light flashes green. When it does its open. Neat, huh?

My keys =]


My door


Alright, that's enough from me for now. I will try and post about the Highland Games later on tonight but I'm just bleh right now.

How was your day?

Sunday, September 6

Just a Quick Update!!

Hello everyone! I hope your Saturday was swell =]

The Highland Games were a lot of fun. We had good weather but it wasn't so hot you were frying. I promise I will post the pictures either tomorrow evening or Monday sometime. I would post them tonight but I need to get up early tomorrow to move into university. Ahh saying university never gets old.

Oh, actually I'm not sure if I've mentioned it on here yet but my college (Mount Royal College) became a university on September 3rd. Now it's Mount Royal University. Sounds elite doesn't it? Wink wink. I've been told by my American boyfriend that college and university is interchangeable down there, so for some of you this may be one of those "uh huh, so?" Sort of deals. But here in Canada, college is supposedly "dumber" than university. Which is total BS. The assumption is that if you're going to college you're not as smart as those going to university. HAH. I could have gotten into any of the university programs in Alberta, but I picked MRC because of the smaller class sizes, its cheaper to attend (and I've been getting university level courses still) and the residences are nicccccccccccce. Plus it's relatively close to my town since it's located in Calgary. Anyway, the only real difference was that MRC could not give you a degree. You had to do two years at Mount Royal and then transfer into an Athabasca University program (which you could still take AT MRC) and get your degree from Athabasca. It's really confusing I know, because you still did all 4 years at Mount Royal. Anyway, for the past year though, they've been able to grant degrees, just hadn't had the new name. Well now they do. So it's exciting. I know this is dorky of me, but I really want to get one of those MRU hoodies now =]

Alright, I should probably go to bed now that I've rambled.
Hope everyone has a good Sunday!!

Saturday, September 5

Not Much To Report

I wrote about a page and a half yesterday and... I like it! Yay! I had a brief brainstorming session with Christopher last night and he helped tremendously! He forced me tell him what was holding me back from writing this next scene. I didn't think him getting all "management" on me was going to help, but it did! It made me be open and honest and think about it. It also made me accountable to someone else - which helped. He helped picked it apart until I finally realized what has been bugging me the past several weeks! Now that I know, it seems like I've always known.

Sadly, the problem is a bit too complicated to explain without having to explain my whole story for an hour, LOL! But to make an extremely long story short, there was this character that I'd planned on introducing (yes the same one I talked about a few posts ago) in this next scene. However, in the end I realized that the problem was this character. I could cut her completely from the story and it would probably make it better in the end. And I know we've all heard that if you can cut them so easily or if you know it'll make the story better, then you should probably do it.

Now that she's gone, I feel like a weight has been lifted off of my chest! And voila, suddenly that page and a half came flying off my fingers and I'm excited to write again tonight! I wish I could have written more yesterday and earlier today but I needed to pack for college.

Anyway, my mum has heard bits of what I wrote and she was laughing out loud (yes, she was supposed to be). And Chris read the whole scene and only had one minor issue with a phrase I used. So all in all, very good.

I think I'm going to keep writing tonight and see where it goes. Unfortunately, I need to go to bed early tonight because my family and I are going to the Highland Games in Calgary tomorrow. Yay! I shall make sure to post a ton of pictures of the even for you!

But I should get to writing now. I hope you all have a fabulous long weekend and be safe where ever you are!!

Friday, September 4

Writing Tip of the Week

Ahh, another theme post! Aren't you all happy? Yes? Perhaps? Just go with it, 'kay? Okay.

First, just remember, all thoughts are my own and you are allowed to disagree with me. I promise I won't hold it against you... Much, LOL! Just kidding... Anyway, you are even allowed to state your own opinions in the comments section. Aren't I nice? I'm letting you voice your thoughts, LOL!

But down to business... I'm not sure if this is so much a writing tip as it is a pet peeve of mine. However it could be seen as a writing tip because I'm sure I'm not the only one who finds this annoying...

-Ahem-


Alright, seriously guys, I've read way too many romance novels where they use the cliche "love at first sight."

Blinks.

WHY?

Now, I'm not saying to not use it. Don't get me wrong, sometimes it can work. Sometimes.
I find especially in the heroine's point of view it's alright. But in the guys? No. Way. And I'm not talking about the "plot" where he's in-lust with her right away, or is intrigued and what have you. I'm talking about where BAM he sees her and is already talking about love and marriage and children ON THE SECOND PAGE!

Gaping at everyone.

I ask again...

WHY?

Even if your hero is the most tenderhearted, lovable guy, I sincerely doubt he is going to win over your readers by falling in love with her right away. Personally, I'd think he was stupid. And who wants to fall in love with a really stupid guy? Looks around for raised hands. No? No one? Never would have guessed (extreme sarcasm here, people!).

Honestly, he can have serious suspicions about his feelings for her and can even like her a lot, but when the hero is talking about "how much he loves her" and how "absolutely perfect" she is I seriously start to think he's a little slow in the noggin'. Either that or he's a stalker. Or gay.

However, if he does fall in love with her right away, there better be a damn good reason why. Is he young and foolish and it's his first love? Did she save someone close to him and has thus won his undying respect and loyalty? Etc...

If not, I say scrap it. I've never read a romance where love at first sight (unless it was along the same lines as the examples given above) where I didn't find the guy to be weak, flimsy or more feminine than most females. Not exactly appealing in the genre where guys are supposed to be MEN.

Gah!

Thoughts?

Thursday, September 3

Tired of Being Tired


So as I mentioned, Monday I went in and got my blood taken for testing. Again.

Well, what I haven't mentioned is that I once again got an "urgent call" from my doctor's office the next day. Apparently my iron level is lower than ever. Since my lowest before was an 8 and they hospitalize you at 6, I'm assuming I'm at a 7. Yay. The receptionist (nice lady who once told me I had spider eggs in my shoulder. Heh. Yeah, she provides good laughs) told me that with my iron level I should be either fainting or falling asleep once every 20 minutes. I'm sad to report she's right.

Now, this has been an ongoing issue for 6 months. And in those 6 months, I've received some well-meaning and some not so well meaning advice on how to get better. I've decided I'd share them with you today!

  1. Eat healthier
  2. Drink more water
  3. Go to bed earlier
  4. Take medication
  5. STOP taking medication
  6. Sleep for at least 8 hours
  7. Don't sleep so much
  8. Exercise- get your heart pumping
  9. Spend more time outside
  10. Spend less time outside
  11. Stop being lazy and just go do something
  12. Put make up on - you're too pale.
  13. Stop holding your breath to make your lips blue (DOES THAT EVEN WORK?)

You get the picture. But what people don't seem to realize is, my illness is out of my control. I have extreme iron deficiency and no matter what I seem to do, it keeps getting lower. I'm on two iron pills a day (one morning, one night). My mum, much to my Dad's approval, makes steak etc... all the time. We even just picked up a bunch of iron rich foods in the hopes of getting my iron up, but from my absolute lack of energy, I'm not sure it's working.

I have a doctors appointment next Friday but I'm not sure what we're going to talk about. She can't put me on more iron pills because I'm on a lot as it is. Maybe iron drips? Which sounds, OH so much fun. Anyway, I also have an appointment with a specialist next Wednesday where I will have a nerve conduction test to check out my wrists. Ugh.


I will hopefully write another post later on today. I just haven't decided what yet... Hm.

Wednesday, September 2

WIP Wednesday


Yep, that's right folks, I am going to jump on the bandwagon and have WIP Wednesdays. I know it's the new trend to have "themed" days, and I don't tend to like following trends, but I quite enjoy some of them. I also think it will help me post consistently throughout the school year. Which I know everyone wants, LOL!
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I am currently at 74 000 words on my novel. Not where I'd like to be, but that's alright. About two weeks ago I was at 75 000 words but I had to cut about 5000 and rewrite the whole scene. Why? Because... I started writing the novel and got to about 50 000 words. And then I went back and added about 25 000 words in the middle of that. So now some of the stuff I wrote BEFORE needs to be changed and/or removed.
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Anyway, I finally got through a scene I've been having troubles writing. Chris read it and didn't tear it apart too badly but he did edit it a lot. By the way, I love when people are honest about a scene and can say things like "that was really clunky - it needs a lot of work" without being mean. Tis a grand thing.
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Next I'm working on a scene that I had written before but now it's in a different setting, the tone is different, and I'm introducing a new character to the whole story. Soo, its pretty much a rewrite, LOL! I'm hoping to work on that tonight. Then after that I just need to read over and edit a bunch of the scenes I already have. I'll need to change a few things but other than that it should be fine.
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How is your WIP going? Hit any walls? Have any AHA! moments?

Tuesday, September 1

WhatTheHeck Post

So in lieu of yesterday's less than cheerful post, I have decided to dedicate this post to the topic of "Really Dumb Writerly Things I've Done." We shall call it a WhatTheHeck Post. If you all enjoy it we could make it a weekly thing. Because I apparently love humiliation.

Oh, I can just hear you all snickering away in gleeful anticipation of my downfall. Don't try to deny it, I know it's true.

Alright, so first I would like to make it perfectly clear that although some of the things you are about to read may alarm you in their over abundance of stupidity, I DO NOT write this way. Not all the time at least. Okay? Got it? Oh, and remember, all of these things were done while I was sober. Completely and utterly, since alcohol and I don't tend to get along. Ever.

-ahem-

Now, because of my bad wrists, my writing has become... well, atrocious. In truth, I've seen doctor's notes that were more legible than my writing. Due to this, I bought a small voice recorder so that at night, rather than write down ideas where they would later be eyed with a mixture of fear and displeasure, I just talk to myself. Much more sane. I think.

Well, having had said voice recorder for a number of months, I have learned some very key things to using the device. First: Apparently you must actually speak out loud for it to record anything. It doesn't record thoughts. Shocking I know, right? And yet, this has become an issue with me. In the morning I will play last night's recording, only to be faced with a lot of silence or the sound of rustling sheets, but nothing more. And then suddenly, BAM I start talking midway through a sentence. Extremely helpful in the whole scheme of things. Not.
For example: silence, silence, sheet moving, silence, fan squeaking as it oscillates, "So yeah. I think that sounds like a good idear."

Blinks in confusion. Handy.

Secondly: Not everything you say sounds as good when you play it back to yourself the next morning. For example: "Bright morning sunlight streamed in through the window, setting the dust particles to glittering like fairy shit."

Ahem. I think we can all see how absolutely God-awful that sentence is. My only excuse is that it was 2:36am and I was clearly very tired. Oh and for the record, this is what the sentence is now: "Bright afternoon sunlight streamed in through the open window, setting the pale pink curtains aglow as they fluttered in the summer breeze."

Quite a difference, eh? Anywho, on to more embarrassment - which, let's face it, is why you are still reading.

Although this one story has nothing to do with my voice recorder, it explains quite well why I use the device. About two weeks ago I woke up with a crick in my neck and the smell of ink in my nose. Confused, I lifted my head only to stare down with bleary eyes at a piece of paper with a single messy word scrawled across it.

Can any of you guess what word was so important that I wrote it down in the middle of the night? No?

"Potatoe."

And yes, I spelt it that way as well. The truly sad thing is, the second I read it I actually knew what I meant by it.

By the way, I later found out I also had ink along my cheek where I had fallen asleep on the paper.

Any stories you'd like to share?

Visitors!

So, before I go to bed and continue reading Kris Kennedy's The Conqueror (I'm only on page 60 but I love it so far - very Robin Hood-esk) I decided to pop on in and see what my statcounter is at, you know, just out of curiosity.

And...

It's at 50 visitors for August 31st! WOAH! Now if only some of these people would comment... hmm. Any suggestions to get them talkin'?
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