Friday, June 22, 2012

Friday Favorites

Tonight I had the Emotion Thesaurus by Angela and Becca sitting open by my computer (like it usually is), and my oldest started reading it out loud. 

Then my boys started to make it into a game. Someone would read out a physical signal and whoever showed it first got a point. Although I have to admit that a red face and molten skin were hard to act out. Then my oldest son read out the signs and we had to guess what expression it was.

It got quite silly when we exaggerated a shrill voice or invading someone's personal space. 

It was interesting to see the expressions in action, which got me wondering. Would it help to act our your scenes to give you a better sense of where the characters are and what they're doing?

What do you think? Have you ever acted out a scene? 

Hope you have a great weekend.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Two for One

I'm having a pretty stressful night, so this post will be short.

I came across a blog that helps combine exercise with reading, you might be able to apply to writing if you're really nimble.

It's called Lazy Girl Fitness

Have a good Wednesday.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Defeatist Attitude

I have to admit that I haven't began my outdoor soccer season in the best of shape. I injured my calf back in January and didn't let it heal, so I've been battling pulled muscles, tight hamstrings and feeling like I'm saddle sore all the time. This does not leaned itself to exercising hard, so my fitness is not great and it's affected my game. Not necessarily because I can't run, but because I think I can't. I'm constantly worried about taking that one stride that's going to tear my hamstring.

I'm psyching myself out of games. Before they even start I think I can't do it, or we can't possibly win. That needs to stop. First, I need to lose the extra poundage that is hindering any kind of recovery, then I need to push through and exercise harder and finally I need to believe I can do it.

I need to follow this advice when it comes to writing. Lots of times I set myself up for failure. I have a defeatist attitude. I convince myself that my writing isn't good enough or there's no way I could market myself the way others are able to. I talk myself out of trying, but that needs to stop. First I need to write even if it's crap, I need to write. Then I need to edit and read and edit some more, and finally, I need to believe I can do it.

So here's to believing.

How about you? What do you do to make yourself believe?

Friday, June 15, 2012

Friday Favorites

Today is going to be my favorite thing this week.

In the past two weeks, I've gone from working 20 hours a week to 30 and last night I had to be at work for 12 hours. I'm  totally exhausted, my house is a mess, and we are in sore need of some groceries.

Honestly, I don't know how people who work full time do it. How do they keep up with everything. For the past couple of weeks, I feel like I've been slowly drowning in everything I'm not doing.

Today is my day off and I'm looking forward to relaxing, catching up on some housework, exercising, and doing some writing.

How about you? Do you work full time, part time, or do you stay at home? Where do you find time to write and get everything done if you work full time. Or are you just in a perpetual state of tiredness?

Have a good weekend.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Writing Fast

I'm not trying to make excuses, but I have a hard time finding time to write. I work 3-4 days a week. Two nights a week I play soccer. Add in my kids stuff, my futile attempts at keeping the house clean, and keeping in touch with my family, well let's just say time is limited.

Also, I'm a slow writer. In the past few years I've only written two and a half books. So when I read Jody Hedlund's post, it made me wonder if I could write faster. She talks about how it's difficult to make a living as an author if you only publish one book a year (if you're a mid list author).

Some authors are writing two to four books a year. Even I've noticed that many authors are announcing two books being published in 2013.

So this got me thinking.  Could I write more than one book (draft, revise, and edit) in a year. I think it would take a lot of time management and sacrifice. Things like sleep, a clean house, watching my kids play sports, and even my soccer games.

I guess it's a matter of priorities. I'm not sure if I'm willing to stop going to my kid's basketball games, but I'm pretty sure I could give up a clean house.

How about you? Do you think you can write more than one book a year or maybe you already have? What would you be willing to sacrifice to gain more time to write?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Bursting Blue Balloons

Does your brain ever feel like it's on the verge of being a bursting balloon.

This week I discovered the wealth of information that is Janice Hardy's blog. And every Friday, I read all of Stina Lindenblatt's links on her blog. Both are brimming with wonderful tips

The problem is eventually I feel like my mind is ready to explode with all the information:

How to make your characters more emotional?
How to move your plot along?
How to plan out your novel?
How to write a great hook?
How to write a compelling query?
How to make your reader continue reading?

Now when I read my scenes, paragraphs, and sentences, I keep wondering if I'm implementing everything I'm reading. Am I showing more emotion? Is the dialogue forwarding the plot? Do my characters motivations, responses correspond with their personality?

At times I feel overwhelmed.

I think I might start engaging in some free writing where I just write what I want and not worry about any kind of rules, plot, or character.

How about you? How do you stop yourself from feeling so weighed down with information?

Friday, June 8, 2012

Friday Favorites

This week one of my favorite things has been Game of Thrones. The story telling is amazing. Even with all the violence, swearing, and intimate scenes.

I haven't actually watched a full episode, because I don't have HBO, but I've seen scenes on youtube. And I recently discovered an episode breakdown on

For each episode they have a recap and a thing called "Inside the Episode" where the writers of the show break down the characters on the show. They talk about their history and how it affects their choices, their feelings, and their motivations. I found it intriguing to watch, and a good lesson on how to analyze your characters.

As a reader, I've always thought that I liked books that were more focused on plot than character, but I'm beginning to rethink that. I think I lean more toward character driven books now.

What about you? Do you focus on plot or characters first?

I put a link to the first "inside the episode" podcast, but sometimes my videos don't always work. Anyway if you go to youtube and type in "Inside of the episode - game of thrones", they'll show up. And my apologizes, I think there may be a little bit of swearing in this clip.

Have a good weekend.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


Tonight after soccer practice, we were strategizing for our next game. We talked about pushing the ball to the wings and then pulling it to the top for the mids or defence to shoot. We discussed being first to the ball and playing tight defence.

Mind you these are things that we would ideally like to do.

I remember when I kicked a ball and instead of going down the field, it went in front of the net. My keeper yelled, "never in front of the goal," and I yelled back, "I didn't mean to do that."

I think when it comes to our writing ideally we want perfect plots, complicated characters, and stunning settings. And lots of times our ideas are great. I had a recent one where my CP wrote back telling me she thought it was a terrific idea and I responded with, "I seem to have good ideas, now I just work on my execution."

So along with my long balls and crosses, I'm going to work on my character motivations and emotions. I think those things will help me in my execution on the pitch and in front of the computer.

How about you? What are trying to do in order to have better execution?

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Math Tests and Quiet Spots

Last week I was having a hard time concentrating. Ever since I got my laptop, I've done all of my writing on the kitchen table, which sometimes isn't the most conducive place to write especially when the kids get home from school.

So last week, my son had to write a math test in order to get into honors math for grade 9, so I went to the school and sat down in the cafeteria with my laptop and wrote for an hour and a half (that's how long the test was). I was amazed at how much I was able to write and edit. I almost have the chapter that's been plaguing me for years (not an exaggeration) done.

There are so many distractions at home. The internet and email being the prime one. I think I might take one day a week where I go somewhere to write where I have no distractions.

Now I just have to pick a place.

Do you ever leave home to write, and if so where do you go? Or are you way more disciplined than me?

And just to brag, my son got into the class.