Tuesday, August 30, 2011

AIM Day 30

Word Count: 11,062
Song of the Day: Fly by Sugar Ray

I spend a lot of time working on my current WIP. I should--after all, it is a work in progress. However, the question today is, do I spend too much time working on that particular project? It's not getting me to my word count goals, unfortunately. So, tomorrow, for my last day of August, I'm trying something new. I was given a Storymatic prompt a short while back, and I'm thinking this is the perfect opportunity to test it out. We'll see how it goes!

Monday, August 29, 2011

AIM Day 29

Word Count: 10,151
Song of the Day: A Little Piece of Heaven by Avenged Sevenfold

Reward yourself!

No, seriously. Meet your goals? Give yourself something for it! Two days until September, it looks like I may not meet my own goals, unless I get to some serious buckling down. I'd already decided that if I won NaNoWriMo I would buy myself some purple furniture for my new apartment. Since it appears I need some serious motivation to meet my 20k goal this month, if I somehow manage it, I'll buy myself some fun ice trays like these ones:

What would motivate you as a reward?

AIM Day 28

Word count: 9009 (I can't wait to have my computer back and get stuff typed up!!!)
Song of the day: Irene by Tobymac

Baby shoes! And they sparkle!!!! (My future daughters will be soooo spoiled.) Actually the inspiration is shopping for homegoods like decor and towels and such. What kinds of things would your character pick out? How would s/he decorate her/his place? Bet it's different than how you'd do your own.

AIM Day 27

Word count: 9009
Sing of the day: Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO

I'm catching up on posts since my power is out :0
Trapped indoors? Do a puzzle! Or better yet (for your WIP, anyway) do some plotting! I did both this weekend while hiding from Irene. (The pictures are of the same tree, btw, just different angles, of both the camera and the tree itself.)

How did you survive the weather, if it hit you?

Friday, August 26, 2011

AIM Day 26

Word count: 9009
Song of the day: U and Ur Hand by P!nk

Do something silly. My mom and I were shopping and I found this head piece. Never would I wear it, but I had to get a picture. Anyone else find that being silly makes you more creative?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

AIM Day 25

Word Count: 9,009
Song of the Day: A Little Piece of Heaven by Avenged Sevenfold

Anyone else hunkering down for this monster storm we're supposed to get? I've got canned veggies and cereal and a few other things I can eat without cooking; the battery supply is stocked; my ipod is charged; and my notebooks and pens are set. So if we get hit as hard as we're supposed to and the power goes out, I'm all set to sprawl out on the floor and do some hard-core plotting and writing--long hand, of course. Nothing like being trapped indoors to spark your creativity, eh?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

AIM Day 24

Word Count: 8341
Song of the Day: Pray for You by Jaron and the Long Road to Love (Thanks to Elizabeth Sogard for the suggestion.)

Today, I'm taking a break.

I didn't make that decision until seriously five minutes ago. I like to get in a few thousand words a day (cuz you can't edit a blank page, right?), but today that just ain't happenin'. It feels absolutely insane, but I think I need it. I've been staring at my open document (not a blank one, btw) all morning and into the afternoon, and I've gotten nothing written. Seriously, not a word. I was pretty much freakin' out.

So I'm taking a break. I have way too much on my mind right now to type out one coherent sentence, let alone 3 pages' worth. Unless I am struck dumb with the Lightingbolt of Inspiration, I will be sitting here plotting my NaNo project.

Do you take breaks from writing? Does it help you?

And since I mentioned it...Are you doing NaNo this year? What's your project?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

AIM Day 23

Word Count: 8341
Song of the Day: According To You by Orianthi


With the epicenter being only about 39 miles from here, a few of the nearby buildings sustained damage. Not ours, though. I spent the afternoon soothing nerves and assuring customers that we hadn't been ignoring them; we'd just evacuated the building. One of our agents called to check on us, and she said, "I hope you all have earthquake insurance!"

(That's probably a lot more funny if you spend 40 hours a week shuffling insurance calls to different people.)

Small as that little scare of ours was, comparatively, it got me thinking: What am I leaving behind if something happens? I always wanted to make a difference in the world, even just a small one. It would be fantastic to have a published book out there somewhere as a legacy, no? But first, it has to be written.

What do you want to be your legacy?

Monday, August 22, 2011

AIM Day 22

Word Count: 8,205
Song of the Day: Hell on Heels by the Pistol Annies

Today, my advice is to have obnoxious friends.

Okay, maybe not obnoxious...

I met Stephanie in high school. We've been friends ever since. Stephanie is one of those people who could be considered to have an abraisive personality. She doesn't sugar coat things, and if she wants something, she'll let you know. I made the fortuitous decision to let Stephanie read the first few chapters of my current work in progress. At the moment, I've been writing the "candy scenes" so that I could stall as I was figuring out the next chapter. I had dinner with Stephanie last night, and she let me know that she is none-too-patiently waiting for the next few chapters of my WIP. Seeing as I won't send someone a chapter when I'm in the middle of it, I need to get this chapter done so she can read it. In the mean time, I know she'll nag me until it's done. That's motivation, for sure!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

AIM Day 21

Word Count: 7258
Song of the Day: Nightmare by Avenged Sevenfold

Listen to music your character might listen to.

I needed some new tunes, so I went a bit more angry and hardcore than I'm used to; Nightmare, the title track of A7x's 2010 album, is pretty dark, and it fits with two scenes I'm in the process of writing. Inspirational? Totally. In a dark, angry sorta way.

What type of music does your MC listen to?

Saturday, August 20, 2011

AIM Day 20

Word Count:7258
Song of the Day: Sweet Child O' Mine, Guns N' Roses

I didn't realize it until just now, but the song of the day goes with the advice--go shopping for baby clothes.
Well, not if you hate it, or something. I happen to love it, and I was going to a baby shower, so...tada! (It's got Pooh Bear on it, btw.) Do something you love! Other than writing. The happy juices will help you brainstorm. Yay!

What are your favorite activities to get creative?

Friday, August 19, 2011

AIM Day 19

Word Count: 6420
Song of the Day: Defying Gravity, the Chris Colfer version

You know that book, The Help?

The one that's being made into a movie?
The one that's been splayed all over the TV and the walls and all that?

It's huge, right? I want to write a book that's that big some day. I assume a lot of other aspiring authors do, too.

Fun little trivia fact: The author, Kathryn Stockett, received 60 rejection letters. It wasn't til query number 61 that an agent finally took interest in her book.

Makes you think, don't it?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

AIM Day 18

Word Count: 6420
Song of the Day: Everything'll Be Alright (Will's Lullaby) by Joshua Radin

Today I've got an odd one. Shocking, I know.

Find inspiration in a bad critique.

A few days ago, I got a critique that I felt was unduly harsh. Every tiny thing was torn to shreds, and it seemed like the critter didn't enjoy my style or what I had written. At first, I was upset. I couldn't figure out why this person was even bothering with my piece if s/he found it so horrid. A few days out now, I've come to terms with it. I know not everyone is going to like what I write or how I write it. After all the passion wore off, I decided to use the bad review to make my writing stronger.

How do you handle negative comments on your work?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

AIM Day 17

Word Count: 5856
Song of the Day: Only Fooling Myself by Kate Voegel

Watch your favorite show.

At the moment, mine is Supernatural. It's got hot men running around with sharp objects. And the one in the middle? He's my Shock, my leading male character. And he is super hot!!

All the happy hormones that come from watching the show, and watching Jared Padaleki, aka Sam, aka Shock, work themselves into my writing. I LOVE Shock, and I'm pretty sure it shows.

Which of your characters is your favorite?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

AIM Day 16

Word Count: 5572
Song of the Day: Addicted (Acoustic) by Saving Abel

Read outside your genre.

I've heard this from a number of published authors; when they're working on a project, they don't read anything in their genre. Right now, I'm writing a piece that is in the SciFi genre. Therefore, I'm reading Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling. Little different.

What do you read when you're writing?

Monday, August 15, 2011

AIM Day 15

Word Count: 5572
Song of the Day: Broken, Secondhand Serenade

My place has never been cleaner than the night before a major assignment is due. This was a new phenomenon to my roommate in Hong Kong. Apparently it's a Western thing.

I don't exactly have a school assignment due, but I am having a procedure done tomorrow which requires that I fill out paperwork about my medical history. What am I doing instead? Yep, plotting and writing.

What do you use writing to procrastinate on?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

AIM Day 14

Word Count: 5572
Song of the Day: Supermassive Black Hole by Muse

Today's inspiration: distraction.

See, that lovely weekend at the beach turned not so lovely. Unfortunately, being all pale and whatnot, I got a nice burn. Through SPF 50 sunscreen. Mostly on my legs, thank goodness, though it does make walking, and especially stairs, a bit difficult. Therefore, I'm sitting at my desk writing, bathing my legs in aloe. Yay, distractions!!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

AIM Day 13

Word count: same as yesterday
Song of the Day: Margaritaville by Jimmy Buffet

Today's inspiration is brought to you courtesy of Virginia Beach. Change of scenery! Yeah, so I'm not getting in any sort of word count today, but my characters are seemingly enjoying the salty air as much as I am and are talking much more freely. I'll have a lot to put on paper--er, screen--when I get back.

Friday, August 12, 2011

AIM Day 12

Word count: uhh...roughly 1k more than yesterday
Song of the day: Toes by Zac Brown Band

Yeah, so I'm on the road and therefore don't have access to my documents, but I got in more than a thousand words today. Yay!

Anywho my brilliance for the day: set a time limit. Those more than a thousand words today? I wrote them in two half hour increments. While answering the phone at work. Doable!

Do you set time limits for concentrated writing?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

AIM Day 11

Word Count: 4,540
Song of the Day: Rollin' in the Deep, by Adele

It's entirely possible that I'm not entirely sane.

I know what you're thinking: "NOOOOOO, really?!? Shocking..."

But, hey now. Don't go judgin' me too harshly. There's a bunch of other artistic types out there, and can you honestly say you're not the same way? I mean, honestly?

Today's inspiration: Embrace your insanity. It makes you who you are; it flavors your work; without those voices and pictures and whatnot in your head, where would you be? I, for one, would have nothing of the incredible adventure I'm in the middle of interpreting. My life would be no where near as interesting. I am partially insane, and I love every minute of it. Or most of them, at least.

Anyone else ready to admit to their insanity?

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

AIM Day 10

Word Count: 4009
Song of the Day: It's My Life, Bon Jovi

I rather like today's quote over on Critique Circle:

A blank page is God's way of showing you how hard it is to be God.

Author is anonymous, but it had me rather amused.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

AIM Day 9

Word Count: 3,781
Song of the Day: Hallelujah by Paramore

Today's inspiration: switch up your point of view. I was rather not fond of a scene I wrote today. I felt like my character was acting...well...out of character. But how was I going to fix it? Write the scene from another point of view, of course!

Oh, sure. Of course. Duh.

Actually, it took quite a bit of time to figure it out, plus a number of conversations with writing buddies. But it is pretty brilliant, right? Only one of the scenes will actually go into the finished manuscript, but whichever one it is will be better, because by writing it from two different points of view, I get a more accurate characterization.


Monday, August 8, 2011

AIM Day 8

Word Count: 2,966
Song of the Day: Imperial March by John Williams

Today's inspiration: sleepless nights.

Ever spend a night staring at the ceiling because the voices in your head won't shut up and want you to tell their story RIGHTFRAKIN'NOWTHANKYOUVERYMUCH!!!?? Yeah, me, too. However, that is not the cause of my sleeplessness. (No, that would be the doctors, who are 99% certain I have Celiac, but want to do the definitive test, and therefore want me to eat all the foods I'm likely allergic to, which causes my iron levels to plummet. In case you were curious.) It is, however, making me an absolute mad scientist over my current WIP. Today, I got in a LOT of brainstorming and a good scene, plus started a scene I've been procrastinating on. And they're good! (Or, I think they're good, because I'm too tired to think otherwise. Either way works for me right about now.) (I like parentheses. Can you tell?)

While I would not suggest keeping yourself up at night just to get in a solid word count, should you find yourself sleepless, use it to your advantage. Who knows what you'll come up with?

Sunday, August 7, 2011

AIM Day 7, and Liebster Award

CherylAnne awarded this to me. She is a fellow reviewer over at Good Book Alert. Thanks, CherylAnne!!

Liebster means friend in German so this is pretty much the best award ever! There’s no tell-us-seven-things rule to go along with this award. It’s sole purpose is to connect bloggers, specifically those with less than 200 followers. Rules of acceptance and new recipients are the bottom of this post.

On to today's inspiration!!

Word Count: 2, 147 (Yes, I know...I'm stuck at the moment.)
Song of the Day: Unbeautiful by Lesley Roy

Today's inspiration: deadlines. I now have one, and I'm rather excited. My deadline is September 23, just in time for the Hampton Roads Writers Conference. My dad surprised me this weekend by telling me he'd signed us both up for it. The only agent available for a pitch only does non-fiction, so I won't be doing that, but I am entered for a critique of my first ten lines, and I'd love to have a complete manuscript to take with me. I'd better get crackin'!

So! Onto the rules for the Liebster Award

1. Show your thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.
2. Reveal your top 5 picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
3. Post the award on your blog.
4. Bask in the love from the most supportive people on the internet—other writers.
5. And best of all – have fun and spread the karma.

And my winners are:

Saturday, August 6, 2011

AIM Day 6

Word Count: 2,147
Song of the Day: F***ing Perfect, by P!nk

Today's inspiration is brought to you by: the villain.

I know, right? "WTF, Trace? You batsh*t crazy?" Well, frankly, I likely am. However, this is too true!!

There were holes in my plot. I knew that. The bad guy...well, I knew I was supposed to be afraid of him, but I really wasn't, but I couldn't figure out why. Before I'd even mentioned it, a writing buddy asked about my plot, wanted me to lay it out for him. I did, and he pointed out that all my holes had to do with the villain.

Ladies and gentlemen, meet Darius. Okay, so that's not his real name, but this is what my bad guy looks like. I've put a lot more thought into him lately, and I feel a lot more confident in my story now. Yay! He's actually a pretty scary creature now, all masochistic and whatnot. And he's in love with Vesper, far as I can tell. Sticky situation, this is. My villain was extremely not scary until I understood him, knew his motivations. Now that I get it? He's terrifying.

What makes your villain scary?

Friday, August 5, 2011

AIM Day 5

Word Count: 2147
Song of the Day: Call Me, by Shinedown (hmm, I'm seeing a pattern...lol)

"When the going gets tough, the tough get going."

Everyone's heard it. It's a common phrase. I never expected to hear it in reference to writing, though. However, I now have. It's a good thing to keep in mind. When it gets tough to translate the pictures in your head into words, what do you do? Gemma  gives herself a stern talking to.

How could that help? Just "talk" yourself into making it work? Apparently, it works.

My plan for tonight? Pep talk, and then another thousand words.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

AIM Day 4

Aug Word Count: 1,759
Song of the Day: Roses by Seether

I got a lot done last night. Well, maybe not a lot for some people, but I felt like I was on a roll for a while there. Had I been able to keep going (and not, say, commute home, care for a friend's pets, check their house, etc), I could have gotten a LOT done. Alas, once again, life gets in the way of writing. ;)

I keep talking about inspirtation, I know, but yesterday, I found INSPIRATION!!!

I've heard a lot of people say "Write in order! Don't just write will-nilly whatever scene you want."

So, lately, I've been doing just that. Writing in order. Problem was...I wasn't sure what came next. I knew what happened in the middle, or three-quarters of the way through, but not "next". Thank goodness I had a writing budy who just smirked at all those "strict dilligence" kind of people and said, "Just write your candy scenes already."

What? Candy scenes? You mean like Troli Brite Crawlers, one of my favorite snacks?


Candy scenes are the fun ones, the scenes that are more vivid in your head--battles, dramatic moments, evil scenes where you make your characters squirm. You know, the fun stuff, the ones that will be a treat to write, even if it's just a rough, ugly version.

Turns out, I really like candy scenes. (No kiddin', right?) My main character, Vesper, is an assassin, and she likes to pretend she's all cold, heartless, stone woman. It just ain't true. Many of my candy scenes involve another character, Shock, calling her out on it. Shock is a very laid-back kind of guy, and he enjoys nothing more than pushing Vesper's buttons and making her squirm. This suits me just fine, let me tell you.

So, that's my inspirational thought for the day. What are your candy scenes?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

AIM Day 3

Word Count: 542
Song of the Day: Diamond Eyes, Shinedown

Today's inspiration is brought to you by shiny objects. (Actually, I just wanted to find an excuse to post one of my favorite pictures of something shiny. :) Image from Krikawa.)

Last night, I was actually able to give out helpful advice. Shocking, I know!! (I actually can't take too much credit; it was advice given to me a number of years ago. I'm just borrowing it.) I was in eighth grade and doing a project on the career I wanted when I grew up. I decided my project would be on becoming a ficton writer. I had to do an interview, and since John Grisham was unlikely to return my call, I asked one of my dad's writer friends. She answered my questions far more thoroughly than I had expected, so it took me a while to process all of it. I ended up with a nice project (which my teacher later admitted she hadn't thought I'd be able to pull off), and years later, some of the things she said in that interview stuck with me. Since this advice has been so helpful to me, and was helpful to someone else last night, I'm passing it on.

At the top of your paper/word document, write/type these words:

Gag the internal editor, hold him/her hostage, and just write. You can't edit a blank page. Better to have something, even if it's terrible, than to have nothing.

So, there's my shiny bit of inspiration for the day.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

AIM Day 2

Word count (as of 12AM): 0. I had a lovely outline set up, though.
Song of the Day: If I Die Young, The Band Perry

It's August 2nd, and therefore Day 2 of the Awesome Inspiration Month. Much fun to be had, yeah? Today's inspiration: Fans!!!

I haven't met my own personal quota in quite some time. I keep telling myself I want to write so many words in a month, or even so many in a day. No matter how much time I spend sitting at the computer, staring at the blank screen, I just don't get my word count in. But today, I found a smidge of inspiration in a fan!

Today, this fan mentioned that she couldn't wait for my next scene, or to read about some things I'd mentioned would happen in the story. She is actually excited to read the latest chapters of my work in progress! I didn't have to pay her to say that or anything!

So, that's my advise for today; find a fan, someone not related to you, someone you don't have to pay, who is genuinely interested in reading your story.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Welcome to August!! AIM Day 1

So, I didn't meet either of my goals for the month of July. *sad sigh* I got about a quarter of the way to the 20k goal. Therefore, I'm extra determined to meet a goal (any goal!!) this month. I'm going to to with 20k again, because November is coming up, and we all know what that means!!!

Therefore, I am dubbing August as Awesome Inspiration Month. Every day, I will post something inspirational, be it a quote or an article, or a song that has me writing fast; anything goes. So here we are, day 1.

Here goes nothin'!

Putting pen to paper lights more fire than matches ever will.
~Malcolm Forbes