NaNoWriMo Prep #3

We are already at the halfway point of October, aka NaNoWriMo prep month, which is absolutely insane. I really need to get a move on with my story and what I have planned for it, because the rest of this month will go by in the blink of an eye. Today, I will be sharing some helpful tips when it comes to world building and really solidifying whatever you have created in your head, and I hope you enjoy!

Things to Keep in Mind When World Building:

  • When building a fantasy or sci-fi world, base everything around at least one real thing – Worlds in the fantasy and sci-fi genres can get pretty crazy sometimes, and while you do have the freedom to create whatever you want, it has to somewhat make sense. Just base everything around one common and understood fact, and the rest will make sense!
  • Add your own twist – It is fine to have a world that is similar to others like the Harry Potter world or the Percy Jackson world, but add your own elements to make it unique and your own. Yes, we all love a good wizarding world, but sometimes we get tired of reading the same stories over and over again so make sure to make it your own!
  • Know the Facts – You can’t build a good world without knowing the facts. Know the history of your world, and why it is the way it is, even if your readers are not going to read about that part of it at all. You have to understand it before they can!

“Relax, not every page has to be a masterpiece.” – Unknown

“A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” – Thomas Mann

“Description begins in the writer’s imagination, but should finish in the reader’s.” – Stephen King

That is it for this quick NaNoWriMo prep post on world building and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Reading/Writing Update!

Reading/Writing Update!

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It has been quite a few years since I have read The Infernal Devices trilogy by Cassandra Clare, and I forgot how much I enjoyed it! Everything from the story line to the setting (because London in the 1800s!) to the characters, it is all great. Even though I was originally planning on only rereading the first book, I think I will end up continuing with the rest of the trilogy. I also really would like to reread The Selection by Kiera Cass, because I am in the need of light, fluffy and addictive read and The Selection is the perfect option.

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NaNoWriMo is arriving at a rapid speed and I still haven’t decided on an idea yet! I have a few ideas swirling around in my head, but I need to dedicate a few hours to really think about what I want to write and then plan it out. November is going to be a busy month between school, volunteering and NaNoWriMo, but hopefully I will be able to achieve 50k words! Next week is my writing conference though, so hopefully I will learn a lot of new things and get inspired to write for NaNoWriMo. Last year I took a lot away from this conference so I am excited to see how it goes this year!

That is all for my quick reading and writing update, and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Fantasy Recommendations for Fall/Winter!

Fantasy Recommendations for Fall/Winter!

Fall and winter are the perfect time to snuggle up with a good fantasy read, so here are a few recommendations to get you going!

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas

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Sarah J Maas is excellent at writing these dark and addicting fantasy reads. This is a very loose retelling of Beauty and the Beast, and follows our main character Feyre who while hunting, kills a wolf that turns out to be a faerie. Her punishment for this is that she can either die or live out the rest of her mortal life in the faerie realm. Choosing to live, she moves in with a faerie who seems like a monster at first, but she realizes there may be more to him than she thought. A Court of Thorns and Roses is such a swoony book that will leave you wanting more and more. There are also two other books in this trilogy so you can binge the whole thing!

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare 

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I realized that I rarely recommend this trilogy on my blog, and that is because I haven’t read it in forever! I have decided to reread it though this month, so I thought I would recommend it since it is such a dark, cozy read. Clockwork Angel takes place in London, which screams fall with its dark, rainy days (usually). It follows Tessa, a girl from America who receives a letter from her brother telling her to come visit him in London so she does, only to discover it is a trap and is kidnapped. However, Will Herondale, a Shadowhunter, saves the day and brings her back to the institute where he lives. There we are introduced to more Shadowhunters, more action and adventure, and even a heart wrenching love triangle. This trilogy is amazing and if you haven’t read it, definitely check it out!

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs 

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This book is a perfect fall/winter read because it is definitely on the darker and peculiar side (haha). Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children follows a boy named Jake, who visits his late grandfather’s home country of Wales after his mysterious death. There, he finds the gateway to an alternate time where he meets the peculiar group of children who grew up with Jake’s grandfather. I haven’t read this book in what feels like ages so I have the sudden urge to re read this one too as the days get darker!

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi 

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Another trilogy I haven’t read in ages and am dying to re read. Shatter Me follows a girl named Juliette who has been locked up for over a year because of her powers, alone, until a boy named Adam is brought in with her and breaks her out. I really enjoyed the Shatter Me trilogy, which is actually soon going to be a series! It was fast paced, fun but also on the darker side that makes it a perfect read for the fall/winter time.

Grimm’s Fairy Tales by the Grimm Brothers 

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Fairy tales are the perfect stories to read during the fall/winter time, especially Grimm’s fairy tales because they are so dark and twisty. There is Little Red Cap, Rapunzel, Hansel and Grethel, etc. They are all stories we know and love, but there are also some in there I guarantee most of you haven’t read. So snuggle up and crack open this magical book because it will give you the cozy vibe you need during the colder months,

Those are a few recommendations for the fall/winter time and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: NaNoWriMo Prep #2!

 

NaNoWriMo Prep #2

 

It is week 2 of NaNoWriMo prep month! Hopefully you have an idea of what you are going to write about in November, or at least have a few ideas. Today I will be giving some insights on characters and will be ending off the blog post with a few motivational tips and tricks so I hope you enjoy 🙂

Characters~

Characters are such an important factor in any story, because when someone reads your story they look for something or someone to connect to. Usually what they connect to is one of your characters, whether it is how they look, act, what they enjoy or hate, or even just something they have experienced. It is also important that you connect with your characters and understand them because otherwise your characters will fall kind of flat! Anyways, here are a few tips to keep in mind when creating characters.

  • Flaws – Even though though this should be an obvious one, we have to remember that since nobody in this world is perfect, neither is a character in your world. Whether it is them biting their nails to stubs, always forgetting their keys or being late to everything, they need to have some flaws. It is also good to have physical flaws because nobody looks perfect either! Maybe they are a teenager who has acne or someone who has a scar on their lip from a fishing accident. Whatever it is just give them some sort of flaw that makes them like you or me!
  • Uniqueness – What makes them different? Readers don’t want to read about a character they have read about a million times so change it up! You don’t have to have a super massive difference that makes every single one of your characters extremely different from one another, but for a few consider what makes them “special”.
  • Diversity – This is a huge one because we need more diversity in books! We need characters of all races, sexual orientations, genders, etc, etc. Everyone needs to be represented in books so remember that when you are writing! Not only does it help more people connect with your book, but it also is more realistic.

Motivation~

Remember to have fun creating your story and world! It should be fun and exciting because you are creating something from nothing which is truly amazing.

If you feel as if you are lacking in motivation, some tips I have for you is to check out some TED Talk videos! There are some really inspiring and amazing talks with authors like Amy Tan, and they talk about creativity and where story ideas come from. I had to listen to a few for my Creative Writing class and I really enjoyed them. Below are a few links from ones I personally enjoyed 🙂

https://www.ted.com/talks/elizabeth_gilbert_on_genius

https://www.ted.com/talks/amy_tan_on_creativity

https://www.ted.com/talks/tim_urban_inside_the_mind_of_a_master_procrastinator

That is all for this NaNoWriMo Prep #2 and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Reading/Writing Update!

Reading Update!

During the months of August and September, I read a grand total of 1 1/2 books…yeah not too impressive. On Thursday though, I finally finished Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier! I think I have been finally pulled out of my reading rut and am finally ready to keep on reading. Currently I am now reading Simon VS the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Abertalli, and am about a hundred pages into it already. It is such a fast paced, light hearted and enjoyable read that I have no doubt I will be able to finish it this weekend. Today I am doing a lot of traveling as well as tomorrow, so I plan on getting quite a bit of reading done. Hopefully I will finish Simon today and get started on my next read, The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater, because it is the perfect book for the fall time and I am excited to continue on with this series!

That is all for my reading update and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Series I Haven’t Finished…

Series I Haven’t Finished…

I used to be really good at finishing series, but now that I have less time than I would like to be able to read, it can be hard to finish a series. Some series though, I have no excuse to not finishing other than I just didn’t pick up the second book for whatever reason! Anyways, here are a few series I haven’t finished but do plan to.

Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo

When I read the first book in this duology, I mostly skimmed it and didn’t really appreciate or understand what was going on…I feel like I had really high expectations for the book because of the hype, but also wasn’t in the mood to read it at the time so I didn’t love it like everyone else did and does. I do have the second book, Crooked Kingdom though, so I would really like to re read Six of Crows and then jump into Crooked Kingdom! I know I will like it once I actually read it, but when will that be? Hopefully soon.

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard trilogy by Rick Riordan

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The third book for this trilogy is actually coming out in a few days, but sadly I still haven’t read the second book…I love Rick Riordan, and have made that clear on this blog, but I honestly didn’t love this series as much as his others. That is probably the main reason I didn’t read the next book once I got it, but I would really like to give it a second chance. Sadly, I would have to re read the first book which would take up more time, but maybe once the third book comes out I will just binge the trilogy. Yeah, that sounds like a good idea.

Trials of Apollo series by Rick Riordan

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I know, I know, I am just not up to date with all of the Rick Riordan books! He just comes out with too many books in a year and once you fall behind…well good luck. Anyways, this was another new series by him that I didn’t absolutely adore. I did like it, but I feel like I need to give the first book a re read before jumping into the second one. It is possible that I compared it too much to the Percy Jackson series or the Heroes of Olympus series which is why I didn’t like it as much as I hoped. Hopefully that is the case because I know it is a series a lot of people enjoy!

Blood of Gods and Royals by Eleanor Herman 

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This is a really interesting and complex series that includes one of my favourite things, Greek mythology, which is the main reason I picked it up. I really enjoyed the first book and was looking forward to the second book. However, it was a new release which meant I had to wait an entire year before being able to purchase the second book, Empire of Dust. By then I wasn’t as excited because I completely forgot what happened it the book! So yeah, another re read to add to my never ending list because I really did like the characters and story line.

Those are a few series that I have started but haven’t finished…and hopefully in the future I will! I hope you enjoyed this blog post and don’t forget to check out my last blog post: NaNoWriMo Prep #1

NaNoWriMo 2017 Prep #1

It is October! Which not only means fall, warm drinks and Halloween, but also prep month for NaNoWriMo. If you have absolutely no idea what I am talking about when I say “NaNoWriMo” then check out a blog post I wrote last week called “NaNoWriMo”. Anyways, in this blog post I will be taking about getting that idea for your story. Since I did an entire posts on writing prompts last week, I won’t give too many today but if you are in need of some inspiration check out that post!

The Idea

All stories begin with a single idea. It may not be a good idea at first and it probably is a very simple idea, but it is an idea that gets us excited and our creative mind whirling. Ideas come from all around too! They can come to us in a long walk, or in the shower, or even from another story. The point is, is that if you look around long enough something will eventually come to you. When I have some trouble coming up with an idea, I like to hit up Pinterest and check out there writing prompts because I always leave with a spark of an idea!

Here is a summary of what I said in some key points, because these key points will be essential when coming up with “the idea”:

  • Ideas come from anywhere and everywhere
  • Doing an activity where your mind is allowed to wander helps provoke ideas (a walk, a shower, etc)
  • Don’t be afraid to look at other stories for inspiration! (Just don’t completely copy someone else’s idea…)

Remember though, not every idea is a good idea, so if you think you found the “magic” idea and it doesn’t work out…don’t be too hard on yourself! There is an endless supply of ideas for stories, and you have only just begun to scratch the surface whether you have never written a story in your life, or have written a hundred.

Motivation

Whether you have just started planning your story, or are close to the end of writing it, motivation is something every writer struggles with. Even if you absolutely love your idea and your story and your characters, it doesn’t mean you have your doubts at time. For every prep post I do, I will add a little motivation section towards the end, to remind you to just keep writing! I will be including some inspirational quotes, as well as some tips and tricks to stay motivated.

You only fail if you stop writing – Ray Bradbury 

I’m not a very good writer, but I am an excellent rewriter – James Michener 

Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on – Louis L’Amour 

That is all for my first NaNoWriMo prep blog and I hope you enjoyed. Stay tuned for my upcoming prep posts and also check out my last blog post: 25 Inspirational Writing Prompts!

 

 

Reading/Writing Update!

So far I have completed the grand total of one book this month…and today is the last day of the month. However, I have been able to read 150 pages of Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier which is a lot for me lately. I did really want to finish this book before the end of September, but it just means I will be able to finish it early October and get on with my TBR. Since it is Saturday and I am somewhat caught up on sleep, my goal is to read at least 80 more pages of Ruby Red. It is dark and cold outside which is perfect reading weather, and I am feeling the excitement to read!

Writing wise, I haven’t done much new writing this week. I did sign up for a creative writing course which I am now enrolled in, and I did win a writing scholarship to a writing conference! I am really excited to have the opportunity to attend this conference and I know it will be a blast!

That is all for my short reading and writing update, and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: 25 Inspiring Writing Prompts!

25 Inspiring Writing Prompts!

Who doesn’t love a few writing prompts to get their story gears moving and whirling in their brain? I love using writing prompts to get story ideas, or just use them to freewrite and get out of a writing rut. So here are a few to inspire and motivate you to get writing!

(By the way…these are all prompts taken from Pinterest so I do NOT take credit for them!)

  1. No one expected an angel to set the world on fire.
  2. Write a myth explaining lightning or thunder.
  3. The princess had many charms, but looks had never been one of them.
  4. The human mind is truly the scariest thing of all.
  5. A damsel in distress who is really the villain of the story.
  6. The prophecy was written in sharpie on the wall of a gas station bathroom.
  7. “I accept dollars, euros, sterling silver, broken hearts, and secrets.”
  8. She added a charm to her bracelet for every life she took.
  9. Can you kill a monster without becoming one?
  10. Use the lyrics of your favourite song to write a story.
  11. Write a story without letting the reader know if the main character is the “good guy” or the “bad guy”.
  12. Write a myth about what an eclipse means.
  13. He found the journal on the train.
  14. You are a “dream bender”, a psychic who can change people’s dreams.
  15. Mirrors are doors to other dimensions.
  16. “It’s hard to have a heart when you have stopped so many others.”
  17. “Who were you? – before they broke your heart?”
  18. In my free time, I sank ships.
  19. He could see her face in his dreams but he couldn’t remember meeting her.
  20. It can take a very long time to realize you are immortal.
  21. Magic isn’t a cure…it’s a curse.
  22. An ancient spell book has been stolen.
  23. Hell isn’t a place. It’s a state of mind.
  24. Sunburns are painful, but moonburns are worse.
  25. The evil queens are princesses that were never saved…

Those are a few writing prompts and hopefully this will also help you fuel some ideas for NaNoWriMo which is right around the corner! Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: NaNoWriMo!

NaNoWriMo!

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NaNoWriMo is approaching!!!

If you didn’t know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, and takes place in November every year. Basically, it motivates writers to write a full book (more like first draft honestly) of 50k words in 30 days. It is really fun and this will be my 3rd time participating and I cannot wait! I achieved the 50k words my first year, but was super busy last year so I didn’t get a chance to. This year though, I am determined to win and couldn’t be more excited. It will be a long and difficult journey, but that is why I will be uploading blog posts of motivation and tips throughout November to help you, and also myself! I will also be uploading prep posts throughout October, similar to what I did for Camp NaNoWriMo. Anyways, if you have never heard of this or if you are still not sure if you want to participate and are a writer, I encourage you to participate even if you are not positive you can reach the goal of 50k. It is a fun journey where you learn more about yourself as a writer and learn what works best for you.

That is all for this blog post and I hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget to check out my last blog post: Reading/Writing Update!