Websites for Writers

There is an endless supply of writing tips, tricks and tutorials on the internet, and in this blog post I have picked quite a few great websites below so here they are!

  • Creativity Portal http://www.creativity-portal.com/ – This website is great for getting story ideas because they have a wide variety of prompts for you to pick from. I haven’t used this website for any story ideas yet, but it is fun to scroll through them and see what ideas there are.
  • Writers Plot Twist Generator http://writers-den.pantomimepony.co.uk/writers-plot-twists.php – Another generator website, but this one is instead used for plot twist ideas which I think is very unique. Sometimes it is hard to come up with a plot twist, so having a website like this at your fingertips is a great way to get ideas.
  • Daily Writing Tips https://www.dailywritingtips.com/ – If you subscribe to Daily Writing Tips newsletter, then you get writing tips everyday. Even if you think you know the basics to writing, it is always nice to get daily, new writing tips that inspire you to keep writing.
  • Helping Writers Become Authors https://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/ – I found this website not that long ago, but it is filled with free stuff that is incredibly useful. If you subscribe to their newsletter, you get a few freebie books that are packed with writing tips and how-to’s that will stick in your head.
  • Making a Living Writing http://www.makealivingwriting.com/ – This website is good for freelancers, especially newbies. It has tips on how to make it in the freelancing business, as well as how to make your writing stronger.

Those are a few websites that I recommend all writers check out and I hope you enjoyed it. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Writers + Small Towns!

Writers + Small Towns

They always say writing is a lonely job, and it is, because you don’t need anyone else but yourself to do it. All you need is a computer or a notebook and some ideas and you are off. It is nice though, to know there are others in whatever city or town you live in, that are going through the same struggles and hardships you are. It is nice to be able to talk out your writing problems face to face and figure it out together, as writers. But…when you live in a small town where nobody seems to write then that’s where things get lonely. Luckily we have the internet where we can take online classes on writing and meet other writers, but its really nice to know there are people you can reach out to in your community. Where I live, there are writers but there are no writing groups or classes or workshops that include people may age, everyone seems to be at least thirty years older than me, and while online is great for these problems, online courses are really expensive. Anyway, that was my mindset until I narrowed down my searches and asked around. I discovered that there is are open mic reading sessions at my local college, and I have been to a few of them and even though I don’t read at them, it is nice to listen to other stories and know I am not alone. I don’t really know where I was going with this blog post, but I think I want to go somewhere along the lines of “you aren’t alone” because I too, live in a small town, and before that I lived in an even smaller town with about only ten thousand people. Anyways, even if you face these challenges, use the internet or visit your local library or college because you may be surprise what you can find in your community! It may be a little scary trying to get a foot into a new writing community, but in the long run it will be so worth it.

July 2017 TBR!

I got a long list of books I want to get through in July and I think I will be able to finish them all because I believe the BookTube-a-thon is happening this coming month, and I always get a lot of reading done then. Anyways, here are the books I want to read in the month of July!

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City of Bones, City of Ashes and City of Glass by Cassandra Clare – These are the first three books in The Mortal Instruments series, which follows a girl named Clary Fray who has to set off on a journey in this world of angels and demons to find her mother who was kidnapped. Along the way, she realizes she has more of a place in this strange and deceiving world that she thought. This series is a lot of fun and is action packed, so I am excited to be giving the books a re read because it is much deserved!

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The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen – I have been slowly making my way through Sarah Dessen books, which is a long journey because there are a lot of them. The Moon and More is one I haven’t read though, so I am excited to finally pick it up and give it a read. This book follows a girl named Emaline who is spending her last summer before college in the little beachside town she lives in called Colby. One day while working in her parents shop, she meets an artistic boy from New York who is not her type whatsoever, but she can’t help but develop feelings for him over the course of the summer. Its summer time so what a perfect time to dive into this summer contemporary!

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Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen – I am reading this book on the side at the moment, but I am hoping I will completely finish it by July. Pride and Prejudice, if you didn’t know, is a comedy/romance book that follows a British family in an era where marriage and money is everything. I have seen movie adaptions of this book and really enjoyed them, so I decided to give the book a read because I feel like you have to read at least one Jane Austen book in your lifetime.

Those are all the books I am planning to read this coming month and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Reading/Writing Update!

 

Reading/Writing Update!

I have finally finished Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare, and it was absolutely fantastic! It was everything I could have hoped for in this book, but that ending shook me and broke me…but it was still amazing. Since I have finished Lord of Shadows, I got the urge to re read The Mortal Instruments series which is on my summer TBR and its summer so yeah, I am re reading the amazing series! I am also reading Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen which I am also enjoying and am excited to get more into it.

I have been very busy with writing, and for the past nine or so days, I have gotten into the habit of writing 1000+ words a day! I am working on a project I have been wanting to start for a really long time but had only done the planning for it, and now I am finally writing it! Even though I have been writing for a few years, I had always thought of myself as an outliner, but I realize now I am definitely a panster. I like to just write up a detailed three paragraph outline and then list twelve major plot points I want to hit. I also come up with detailed characters and go into depth on my world, but plot wise, I kind of just go for it and that’s what works for me! Question: Are you a outliner or a panster?

That is all for my reading/writing update and I hope you enjoyed!

July 2017 Talk!

June has gone by in a flash and July is right around the corner, so here are the books and movies I am most looking forward to!

Books:

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Because You Love to Hate Me by Various Authors – Because You Love to Hate Me is an anthology and collaboration of BookTubers and authors. In it, there are thirteen villain based stories which I think will be really fun and interesting to read! Some featured authors are Victoria Schwab, Marissa Meyer, Renee Adieh…and a few other fantastic authors! It also features BookTubers such as Sasha Alsberg from abookutopia, Jesse from the JessetheReader and Zoe from ReadByZoe. I already know the stories are going to be amazing because these are some of my favourite people ever, and this anthology will be coming out on July 11th, 2017.

Movies:

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Spider-Man: Homecoming – I am sure everyone has heard about this movie because it follows the amazing spider-man! Spider-man is definitely a favourite super hero of mine, and despite the many, many adaptations I never think there is enough so I am super excited to see this one! I think it is great that they have a character that actually looks like a high school student and he seems like a really awkward and relatable character. Anyways, I am really pumped to see this movie, and it will be coming to theaters on July 7th, 2017.

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Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets – This is a sci-fi movie staring Cara Delevinge, that follows two characters, Valerian and Laureline who are representatives from the government who work on maintaining order within the galaxy, and while Valerian wants to pursue a more than professional relationship with his partner, Laureline, she pushes him away because of his previous history with women…I think this movie sounds really fun and action packed so I will definitely be check it out on July 21st when it is theaters!

That is all for my July 2017 Talk and I hope you enjoyed. Oh, by the way, I have decided to change my posting schedule up and bit, so instead of posting 6 days a week, I will be posting on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. I just have trouble finding the time to write six blog posts a week, and having them be decent as well, so I decided to cut down the posting amount so I can put more effort into creating quality blog posts!

 

Writing Craft Book TBR!

I took out a LOT of craft books this past weekend, so I decided to share the titles with you guys in hopes that you check one of them out! Craft books are a great way to better your writing skills, and I always finish one feeling more confident with my writing style.

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Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Brabury – This is a very famous craft book that I have heard a lot about, so I decided to pick it up and give it a read. This craft book consists of eleven essays on the pleasures of writing from the one and only, Ray Bradbury. In this book, Bradbury shares what he learned from his writing career, and shares his enthusiasm for writing.

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How to Write Dazzling Dialogue: The Fasted Way to Improve a Manuscript by James Scott Bell – I don’t feel the most confident in my dialogue, so I decided to take a book out on it to get better. This book obviously focuses on dialogue and how to make what you characters say more authentic and real. It is so important to have strong, realistic dialogue otherwise the conversations between your characters fall flat!

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A Writer’s Coach: A Guide to Words that Work by Jack Hart – There is no particular reason I picked up this book, but I haven’t read this book yet so I thought I would give it a shot! You take away something valuable from every craft book, which is why I take advantage of everyone I see and read it.

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Story Engineering by Larry Brook – I have read another Larry Brooks craft book called, Story Physics, and really enjoyed it so I thought I would try this one! I really enjoy how Larry Brooks presents his writing tips and tricks in his books, because it is very easy to find and then write down. I like to write down anything I find useful or interesting in craft books, and this is one that I had pages of ideas on!

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Story Genius by Lisa Cron – Again, I saw this book and haven’t read it so I just had to pick it up. I flipped through this book a bit, and already saw some interesting topics in the table of contents. When looking for a writing book you should flip to the table of contents and check out what they will be talking about, because that is how you know that it covers topics that are relevant to you!

That is all for my Writing Craft Book TBR and I hoped you enjoyed!

 

Summer Reading Recommendations!

Summer is within arms reach so make sure you have your sunglasses, sunscreen and a pile of books ready to be read. If you need some help figuring out which books to read though, here are a few recommendations that are perfect beach reads!

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Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson – This book is the perfect summer romance story to indulge in during the summer. It follows a girl named Emily whose best friend, Sloane, has mysteriously disappeared, leaving behind only a summer bucket list for Emily. As Emily sets off to complete this list, in hopes of it leading her to Sloane, she runs into some unexpected new friends that help her live an unforgettable summer. I love Morgan Matson books, but this one is definitely by favourite and I recommend you read it if you love contemporaries like myself!

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Paper Towns by John Green – I am not a huge John Green fan, but I didn’t mind Paper Towns and I thought it was a great beach read. It has a summer adventure and fun characters to follow so it is definitely worth a shot. Paper Towns follows this boy named Quentin, who is determined to find the girl he has been pining after for years, after she mysteriously disappears. Along with a few friends, they work together to follow the clues Margo left behind, to figure out where in the world she is. There is also a movie adaptation of this book which is also entertaining so I recommend you watch it after you read the book if you already haven’t!

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The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare – Since its summer, start a new series! I recommend The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare because it is fantastic, and even if you have already read it, re read it! There six books in this series, and the first one, City of Bones, follows a girl named Clary whose mother disappears and we follow her as she sets off on a journey to find her. Along the way, she realizes the world she lives in is really a world of demons and angels, and discovers that she has more to do with this world than she thought. This series is action packed and has a great cast of characters so I really recommend you jump right into this series and enjoy the fun ride!

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Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan – This is also a great series to read during the summer because is witty and extremely fast paced. You also learn a lot about mythology in this series, considering it is based around Greek mythology. The first book of five is called The Lightning Thief, and it follows a young boy named Percy Jackson who discovers he is the son of a Greek god and is being accused of stealing Zeus’s master lightning bolt. Now he has to go on a quest to find the real lightning thief along with two friends, Annabeth and Grover, and find the bolt before the end of the summer solstice. I love, love, love this series and think it is something anyone can enjoy!

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Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen – I am currently reading this along with Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare, and I am really enjoying it so far! It takes a few pages to adjust to the language, but once you have you don’t want to stop. Pride and Prejudice follows the Mr and Mrs Bennett and their five daughters, and how they find love during this completely different era. There are witty characters and romances and I cannot wait to continue diving into the book!

Those are all of my summer reading recommendations and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Reading/Writing Update!

 

Reading/Writing Update!

Yesterday, I finished re reading Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen, and I didn’t realize how much I needed to read that book! I was in desperate need of light hearted, easy contemporary that I could just fly through. School has been a nightmare recently since I only have a few days left, and I needed a contemporary to read rather than a fantasy or sci fi book. I am, however, continuing on with Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare. I am loving it so far, I am just no able to find the time to read it for hours upon hours. Anyways, I have about three hundred pages of Lord of Shadows left and I am excited to continue on with it!

For writing, I think I have written ten thousand words or so…not really sure but I have been keeping up with it! I have not written since yesterday, and I don’t plan to today because I am physically and mentally exhausted, but I am hoping to get a thousand or so words written tomorrow!

That is all for my reading/writing update and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Camp NaNoWriMo 2017 Prep #1: Characters!

Camp NaNoWriMo 2017 Prep #1: Characters

Camp NaNoWriMo is two weeks away so get out your notebook and laptop, and get ready to write! Since I have done lots of blog posts on how to get story ideas and all that, I decided to do one on characters instead, just to change things up a bit. If you want to see my previous blog posts on how to get story ideas, I will link them below so definitely check them out!

Step #1: Creating Your Character

First things first, you got to create your character. You have to give them a name, an age, eyes, a nose and other physical appearances. If you are having trouble coming up with a name or an appearance for your character, then here are a few ways to help you fuel some ideas:

  • Pinterest (Search “Writing Characters” and “Writing Character Descriptions”)
  • Celebrities! Use your favourite actors, actresses, writers, athletes, etc, etc for some inspiration.
  • Family and Friends

Step #2: Getting to Know Your Character

Now that you know the basis of your character, and what they look like, now it is time to understand your character on a deeper level. Discover your characters backstory, their family and friends, as well as their personality. Are the ambitious? Are they sarcastic? Are they quiet? This is the time to really get to know your character so you can portray them in a 3D way. Here are some things you NEED to include when planning your character:

  • Weaknesses
  • Strengths
  • Fears
  • Relationships
  • Hobbies/Interests
  • Emotional or Logical
  • Dreams
  • Regrets
  • Reflection on self

Step #3: Determine Your Character’s Goal/Needs:

It is very important to figure out what your character is striving for so you know how to move your plot. It is also essential to know what your character needs in order to achieve this, as well as be content. If your character doesn’t any goals or needs, the story isn’t going to be that interesting!

Ex: Katniss volunteers in her sister’s place for the Hunger Games – Goal: To keep her sister safe

Step #4: Establish a Character Arc

Every character is flawed, just like every person in the world. So while all characters start flawed and end flawed, there should be a few things that they change to help them become a better person. Make sure you establish this character arc because it is so, so, so important that your character has made some growth by the end of the story!

Ex. Your character is afraid of the monsters under their bed, but by the end of the book they have conquered that fear.

That is all for this Camp NaNoWriMo Prep and I hope you enjoyed. If you need some help with story ideas, then definitely check out the following blog posts:

https://mylifewithbooksblog.com/2016/11/02/how-to-come-up-with-story-ideas/

https://mylifewithbooksblog.com/2017/04/13/where-to-find-story-inspiration/

Tips for New Book Bloggers!

I am always figuring out new things about blogging, but I thought I would share some of the things I have learned in the past year and a half.

  •  Write what you want because this is your blog and you get to write what you want. Don’t worry if people don’t like the content on your blog, because at the end of the day, as long as you are producing content you want it’s all okay. This goes for more than just blogging too!
  • Add pictures and videos! Pictures and videos that have to do with what you are talking about just add to your blog post and make them much more fun and interesting.
  • Remember that it doesn’t matter how many people follow your blog, or like your blog post, it only matters if you like what you produce. Of course it is always lovely when someone likes your blog post, follows your blog, or takes the time to write you a comment, but if you create a blog post just for the publicity of it, then you are not doing it for the right reasons.
  • Produce lots of content. People like to follow and read blogs that produce lots of content weekly, rather than a blog that posts once or twice a month. It is understandable if you don’t have the time to write a few blog posts a week, but at least strive for one or two lengthy blog posts a week!
  • Proofread and edit your blog posts, because nobody wants to read a blog post that they have to decode because of the huge amount of grammar and spelling errors you made. It only takes an extra minute or two and it makes your blog posts look 100% better!

That is all for my blog post and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Summer 2017 Reading List!