Writing Prompts #4

Hello my lovelies, welcome back to our lovely prompts posts. Again, these come from Janet Burroway’s Imaginative Writing

 

Another twofer. This is a little more generic and could be fun.

 

Number 1: Pick a question you want to be answered. Then go and try to research it for about 30 minutes. Don’t get lost in the research itself but get an idea of the answer from what you found. Then freewrite for another 30 minutes and try to incorporate that research.

 

Number 2: Look into cross genres (art songs, graphic novels, etc). Freewrite about what it is about those cross genres that appeal to you.

 

Hopefully, I’ll start posting some very rough versions of these for some of you. Until next time.

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Writing Prompts #3

And we’re back again to Janet Burroway’s Imaginative Writing: Elements of Craft writing prompts.

 

Today is going to be a twofer. We have two prompts based on observations.

 

First: Go to a public place and spend some time observing your surrounds (I took about 15 minutes). Make notes of the proper names of the items you see (what’s that restaurant called, the gas station, did that person say their name, can you give them one). When you have a decent list going take some time to write a paragraph or two and incorporate those items in it.

Second: Listen to a piece of music you care about. Write something that the music envokes without incorporating any of the lyrics into the song. What kind of images does the piece of music bring to you?

 

Hope you guys have some fun with this one!

Writing Prompt #2

Hey guys, as a reminder these prompts can all be found in Janet Burroway’s Imaginative Writing: The Elements of Craft.

 

Today’s prompt is about lists. Without further ado:

A list of lists:

  • Things on which I am an expert
  • Things I have lost
  • Signs of winter
  • What is inside my body
  • Things people have said to me
  • What to take on the journey
  • Things I have forgotten
  • Things to make lists of

Pick any one of these items to generate a list in your journal.

Pick a single word from your list and write a paragraph about it.

Write a single line about each item on the list.

Writing Prompt #1

Hey guys, I thought I’d share some of the prompts in this awesome textbook for my Creative Writing class that I’m taking this semester. I’ve had a lot of fun with some of them and I hope they help you in the future.

They all come from Imaginative Writing: The Elements of Craft by Janet Burroway.

 

The first one is: this one was following an explanation of keeping a freewriting journal and that you can do anything in it that you want. Try some of these below:

  • Make an observation
  • Dictate an overheard conversation
  • Make lists
  • Questions you’d like answered
  • Your response to a piece of music
  • A rough draft of a letter
  • Names for characters
  • Quotations from what you are reading
  • The piece of your mind you’d like to give so-and-so
  • An idea for a story
  • A memory
  • A dream
  • A few lines of a poem
  • A fantasy conversation
  • Titles of things you are never going to write
  • Anything else.

 

The idea prior to this prompt is to give yourself something to write EVERY DAY. It gets the juices flowing. Some of these were super fun to write.

 

I’m going to try and post a couple of these every week. There are a lot of fun ones in this book and I want to share them with you. I’ll even try to leave some of my (not so embarrassing) attempts at working on the prompts here as well.

 

Until next time!

Distractions are a thing…

I came to the school library today with the intention to sit and work on some of the chapters I still need to edit for Time Healer. The struggle has been a real thing for the end of this book.

 

I’ve mentioned it already, but when I started going about editing Time Healer I was bright-eyed and full of plans after Colorado Gold. I had dabbled in a little editing prior to the conference, wanting to get a start on what I knew was going to be a lot of work to trim words and make it a more powerful piece. I left the conference with ALL THE PLANS, sparked by conversations with agents and fellow writers. One of the biggest plans was a major change to the story thanks to really wanting to dig into the goals, motivations, and the conflicts that my characters are facing.

 

You guys should also know, because I’ve mentioned it before, that these characters decided to completely change things on me. My main character got a little tougher, one character had to disappear (kill your darlings, even when it hurts) which meant a lot of changes to remove him, and my antagonist got a little darker. These things needed to happen to make this the story it was meant to be, but it’s been a lot of work. And instead of cutting words, I’ve added a lot. Which means I’ll be lost in this world for awhile.

 

But I love it.

 

So when things get rough, what do I do? I find distractions:

  • Social media
  • Family projects that could have been put off
  • Games (seriously… Town of Salem is my new guilty pleasure)
  • “School” work (sometimes I obsessively go at it if I know I have time to do something else)

 

What are your distractions?

 

Also, did my random act of kindness for the month. Paid for the person behind in line at Starbucks. Made me feel all sunshine and happiness.

Major Life Changes

I made a big decision at the beginning of December. Well technically, I made the decision before December, but it came to fruition at the beginning of December. Something I don’t think I really saw coming until I made it.

 

In November, before a trip back home to see my parents for Thanksgiving, I decided to give notice at my day job. With no set plans for what would happen after my last day. There were a lot of reasons for my decision, and really none of those reasons were because I was unhappy with my day job. They were great employers, and I left with a ton of friends that I still keep in touch with.

 

I made this decision because I had a sudden realization that there were things I needed in life that I wasn’t getting at that location. Once I get those things settled, and once I go through these changes, maybe I’ll go back (I left on good terms with the idea that it would be an option in the future — but probably in a different role that more fits my career goals) or maybe I won’t.

 

My primary goal in this has been to be happy. I had been stressed with life and the fact that I felt like I wasn’t accomplishing much in regards to my dreams. So I wanted to focus. And I made a tough decision that has, so far, helped me start down a path that can help me realize those dreams.

 

My goals with this short hiatus from work:

  1. One of the biggest goals is going after my dreams. If this blog’s topic isn’t a key indicator of one of those dreams, then I’ll come and say it: I want to spend A LOT more time writing.

    Within that: I have about 12 more chapters to re-write and edit for Time Healer, I’m slowly making my way through those. Once that is done I’ll probably set it aside until after PPWC 2018. Then I’ll do a read through and send off to critique partners. While that’s on the back burner, then I’ll be working on my next project that I’m gonna lovingly nickname Sierra right now. I’ll have a new blog post on that soonish.

    Also, I hope to a blog more, but we’ll see how things go.

  2. Spending time with my family, specifically my daughter. Since she was born, I’ve worked full time other than the period of time I stayed home on maternity leave. I wanted to get more time with her, really build up that bond that my heart has been missing. And it definitely has worked. Though, she is still in school/daycare some of the time, mostly because I want her to have the socialization with children her own age and learn, we still get a lot of time together. We have weekends together, plus an extra day or two here or there. I am less stressed, so when I do grab her for school it isn’t decompressing time once we get home but rather time spent her (and my husband).

    Family is important, and I don’t want to keep it on the back burner any longer.

  3. School — I’m going back to school at a local community college. Although I already have my AA from years and years ago, I am going to get an AAS in Journalism and Contemporary Media while also taking some of the creative writing classes the school offers so that I might be able to go off to another 4-year college and get my degree in creative writing. This is a newer goal, not really something I looked at doing when I made the decision to leave my day job.
  4. A part-time job — going to find something to make the cash I need to pay for myself being unemployed, but I’m going to make sure its something I can be happy with. And something that I can still make sure I can spend time with my daughter, work on my writing, and go to school.

 

And now a little over a month later, I am happy.

 

Have you gone through any significant life changes? Have you ever made the decision to focus on your dreams?

 

Until next time lovelies.

NaNoWrimo 2017

Hello, all of my lovelies!

 

I just thought I’d go over how NaNo went for me this year. I “won” by hitting the 50K mark, but I didn’t really end up doing what I had planned to do. Originally I had planned to divide my time between editing Time Healer and writing a new project “Sierra”. Instead, my time had been completely devoted to Time Healer. It had needed a significant overhaul after I started sitting down to write it.

 

Though there were a lot of words that were recycled in the rewriting, it ended up being almost a brand new story, which means every word that I counted were brand new. Which means I changed 50K+ words in this story. It was much needed (and I am still trying to figure out how to do the ending to fit this new story) and I hope this makes it a better story.

 

Anyways, here is the week by week break down of November’s word counts:

  • Week 1 (November 1-4): 6,825
    The first week was short, but I managed to stay mostly track. The normal goal with a 1,667 per day goal would have had me at 6,668. I was a little under 200 words over that this week.
  • Week 2 (November 5-11): 12,489
    This was the first full week of NaNo. With the normal goal for NaNo I needed to hit 11,669. I meet that with a little under 1,000 extra words. I was very happy to have continued the upward momentum. 
  • Week 3 (November 12-18): 11,496
    This was a harder week consistency wise. Again I needed to hit 11,669 to meet the normal goal for the week. I was a little under that, life kind of got in the way that week. I was very glad for the padding from the previous weeks.
  • Week 4 (November 19-25): 13,986
    My vacation for Thanksgiving started this week. Despite that, I rocked out this week. The day that I was traveling this week I pushed to get my words in before we got on an evening flight. Even with the different things happening that week, I still tried to get my words in. Some days I was under but other I exceeded to stay on track.
  • Week 5 (November 26-30): 7,656
    The last week of NaNo was, again, a shorter week. The goal based on NaNo itself meant I should have hit 10,002 this week. I was under that but the previous week helped. 

 

My NaNo total: 52,452

 

I wish some of those words could have been devoted to a new project, but there is plenty of time for that later.

 

Did you guys meet your NaNo goals?