Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Rose State Writing Short Course

I have so much to say on here! I can't believe I haven't updated in so long. Well, so you are aware, the title of Deception is no longer attached to my current project. I'm going back to calling it "Lili's Story" at least for the purposes of this blog. Any of you who are friends with my on my writing Facebook page know the true new title.

I spent last weekend in Midwest City at the Rose State College Writing Short Course. It was my first time at a Writer's Conference and can I just say...


I have never felt so inspired in my life. I didn't send anything in ahead of time for any of the contests, which they passed out awards for on Friday, but I did turn in my First Page for an anonymous panel to read aloud and judge. Out of over one hundred entries, they picked my first page of Lili's Story for Third Place. 

This happened less than an hour after my very first one-on-one pitch session with an agent. After getting to know the agents a bit, I knew I had made the right decision in the one I chose to pitch to. She was excited about Lili's Story and asked me query her right away when it was ready. I couldn't believe it.

Overall, the weekend was a massive success. I was given a one month deadline to query the agent in question with a finished manuscript so my life during the month of October will be one thing and one thing only:


To give you guys another little update, as of the finished outline today, Lili's Story will have twenty chapters. Fourteen and a half of these chapters have been written at a total of 40,000+ words.

That... is a little staggering to me. Still. And I figured up that number in the wee hours of the morning yesterday. Whoa.

I've got to get writing. Adios, Bloggers!

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Working Playlist for Deception

So, because I've gotten several requests for my character playlists... and because I'm procrastinating my writing tonight, I thought I would go through what I have for Deception as of right now and possibly link it up with some quotes from the story. For those of you who don't know the plot yet, I'm sorry but I can't tell you on here! I didn't plan to have 8 songs a piece for them but it's funny that's how it worked out!

Hope you enjoy!


Somewhere I Belong - Linkin Park
This is just his theme song for the book. He's finding something that makes him want to finally let go of his past.

Never Surrender - Skillet
"That was the worst part, really. That I didn’t even want it to go back. Whatever change happened to make me see Lili clearly, I didn’t want it to go away." - Zane, Ch. 7

Just Friends - Jason Reeves
"But how could I keep this up? Smiling and pretending it doesn’t feel like razors in blood stream to hear her talk about this Marine guy she’s hooking up with." - Zane, Ch. 7

Gone Forever - Three Days Grace
"“Don’t you think I spent the entire night trying to figure that out? What excuse could she possibly have for this?” My voice was loud and Tish didn’t have an answer, he just shook his head and stepped aside, clearing the path so I could finish getting ready for work." - Zane, Ch. 9

Scars - Papa Roach
This one I LOVE for Zane! I listened to it as I wrote most of Ch. 11
“Fine. You can stay until morning but you have to stay the fuck in this room, Lizzie. I mean it. I don’t care if you have to climb out the window and piss under a tree you are not to open this door or come out. Do you understand?” - Zane, Ch. 11

What Lies Beneath - Linkin Park
"“You,” I leaned back, narrowing my eyes at Lizzie, refusing to back down. It was time for the truth. All of it. “Are the one thing I regret every fucking day. I should’ve never fallen for your shit to begin with. You’re like a the worst kind of drug and every time I relapse I hate myself more.”" - Zane, Ch. 11

Feels Like Tonight - Daughtry
"So I stood, clenching my trembling hands into fists at my sides while I let her silence peel every bit of sanity from my being and prayed that I could take it. I wanted to take it. I would take her pain too, if I could." - Zane, Ch. 13

Kiss Me Slowly - Parachute
"I watched the room lighten slowly, my eyes heavy but I wasn’t about to miss a second of this night. I continued running my fingers through Lili’s hair long after her breathing evened out."
- Zane, Ch. 15


Runaway - Pink
This is Lili's Theme Song for her life but it will also come into play later with a quote...

You Make Me Sick - Pink 
"I spent the entire day Sunday feeling a blend of nervousness and excitement about seeing Jordan again. Also, there was a great deal of irritation at myself for feeling so nervous and excited. It was a vicious cycle. I stood in front of the mirror on my closet door, frowning at my reflection as I tried not to see all the problems with my outfit. This wasn’t me. All this being nervous and worrying about what someone would think of my outfit. It was frustrating." - Lili, Ch. 6

E.T. - Katy Perry
"Most of the time, the shy boys like Jordan, the ones who weren’t as confident even though they were gorgeous and had every right to be, annoyed the hell out of me. But there was something about him that was different." - Lili, Ch. 6

Breathe Me - Sia
"I wanted to cry and I hated myself even more for it. I had no right to feel sad. I had done this. I had fucked everything up and now I had to get out." - Lili, Ch. 10

Runaway - Pink
"All three sets of eyes were on me now and I dropped my hand, fighting to clear my expression and hold my emotions in check again but I could feel my body trembling from the tension. I was either going to be sick or pass out and I couldn’t do either right now in front of these people."
- Lili, Ch. 12

Take A Bow - Rihanna
"“I fucking hate you, Zane,” it hurt to speak but I put all the betrayal and venom I could behind the words. I stared straight into his eyes, letting every bit of truth I felt show." - Lili, Ch. 12

Bleeding Love - Leona Lewis
"I knew I would regret it in the morning but as I buried my face against his chest, inhaling the scent of him and resting my head on his arm, I couldn’t find it in me to care. I would deal with the consequences to my heart later." - Lili, Ch. 14

My Heart - Paramore
Okay, so I haven't written the scene where this song will come into play but it is a pivotal scene in the book and when I heard this song, I could see the scene in my head. Because of this, I will quote the song to you...
"This heart, it beats, beats for only you (Please don't go now, please don't fade away)
My heart, my heart is yours (Please don't go now, please don't fade away)"

Monday, August 26, 2013

One Month

It's 11:23pm and in just over half an hour, it'll be one month exactly until the writing conference. Deadline is looming and I've spent the entire weekend staring at the massive amounts of editing I now have to do and the possibility of a complete rewrite of my first chapter. Just the IDEA of rewriting chapter one and taking out what I always saw as a key scene to the past of one of my main characters is heart-breaking but staring at the screen to actually change it left me with a migraine that kept me in bed all day today.

I. Hate. Stress.

So, in saying all of that, I'm admitting to all of my wonderful friends here that I have not written a single word in over a week. Not. One. Nothing at all since Kansas City. I have let myself get stressed and overwhelmed once again and I lost my focus. Now, it's only a month before I'm supposed to pitch a finished product to agents, and the odds of being where I need to be are dwindling by the day. That thought is letting the doubt creep in even further.

Couple that with the fact that all of the sudden my characters for the book I was trying to focus on are being eerily quiet when I need them to tell me this story, and I'm all out of motivation on this one. Fortunately, or unfortunately as the case may be, the main character of Book 2 is starting to stir in my mind and bringing her story back out of the box a little. It won't help me for the conference because I'm nowhere near where I need to be to pitch Book 2 instead of Book 3 but at least if someone is talking in my head I can get somewhere with my writing... if that makes sense.

One month. Four weeks. Thirty days. If I write one thousand words a day, which is my daily goal, that's another 30,000 words before I go. That would put Book 3 at over 60,000. The question is, can I find my focus and swim through the muddy waters of my characters thoughts to get there?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

New Project and Musical Inspiration

One of the funniest things to me as a writer is how much music can affect my mood and my characters.

I was struggling with my first story and had put it aside, not writing on it as much. As a matter of fact, I started writing an AU fan fiction for a book series I had read for my book club instead. I wrote over 30,000 words for that fan fiction in about ten days. That's something I've never done.

Inspiration came, as it so often does for me, in the form of a song. The song Untitled by Simple Plan started coming through the speakers of my car and with it came this awesome new idea for a book. So, here I am officially working on my new project. We'll call it Project 2.

So far in Project 2, my playlist is six songs long and that doesn't include Untitled. I've had some major research to do with this project and for these characters. There are five characters that the story will revolve around but it is told in first person from a female lead.

Let's call her AP. AP has a brother we'll call ZP. AP also has two boys she'll be dealing with other than her brother. AB and NM.

Yes, the love triangle. Those of you who know me know how strongly I feel about the love triangles but you'll just have to trust me that this one is different.

I don't know how other writer's do it but to get a feel for new characters, I jump to a scene I know will happen and try to write it out to get to know the character. I started with AP for obvious reasons, writing the beginning of her story. Next, I wrote a scene between AP and NM with the song Collide by Howie Day as my inspiration. It came on my Pandora and the scene I needed practically wrote itself.

Tonight, I was struggling to get my head in the correct place to find AB's voice. I needed to get a feel for AB but I'm working two jobs right now and my head is fuzzy when it comes to creativity when I get this tired. (Exhaustion, most likely.) But out of nowhere, Pandora delivered inspiration yet again in the form of Broken by Lifehouse. That song screamed AB to me and helped me find his voice perfectly.

I don't always write with music but I'd say at least 90% of my inspiration comes in the form of a song. Not necessarily the lyrics but the tone of the song or even the music video can be inspirational for me at times.

Maybe one day if Project 2 ever gets published, I'll be asked about my writing process and be able to share things like this with my readers. For now, I'll continue to document my journey here ;)

Monday, June 3, 2013


That's right, I'm posting an entire blog in order to get a bookplate from The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. I won an ARC of The Raven Boys last summer and as it is the only signed book and only ARC I own (plus that it's actually my favorite author) I am really hoping to get a bookplate with her artwork. So, here is a picture of me with both my ARC and my hardcover copy of The Raven Boys! And if you haven't read The Raven Boys, you really should. I'm looking forward to The Dream Thieves. Only 105 days left according to my countdown.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Amazing Day

Yesterday I was supposed to spend the day with a close friend but at the last minute the plans were cancelled. Given that I had gone to a concert Friday night and didn't get any writing done, a part of me was almost excited to spend the day in front of my computer. It turned out to be the most productive day I've had so far.

Just over 4,400 words written yesterday before I went to bed at 2am! It felt amazing. I finished chapter 2 and nearly all of chapter 3, leaving myself very little to finish it off today. This evening I decided to spend some time editing. After changing from third person to first person midway through chapter 2, I left myself a lot of work to do editing chapter 1 to switch it over. But it's done now and I've been working slowly on chapter 2. It's changed over to first person now but it's still got issues. I was looking too far ahead, excited for my two main characters to meet for the first time, and so there are a few gaps in chapter 2 I'm having to patch. It's led me to a new realization...

Writing is fun. It's work, but it's fun work. Editing, not so much. It's just work.

And with that, I'm off to spend the rest of my night in the messy world of editing.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Number One

So this will officially be my first post. Makes sense to start a blog at the beginning of a journey like this, although the journey actually began years ago with the idea...

Writing is fun, sharing that writing is a scary concept and I'm nowhere near at the point that I'm about to do it yet. Hopefully, this blog and the time it takes me to write my story, the one I hope will be a book someday, will help me find that courage.

So, this is my online journal. It will show my journey to the world. Triumphs and failures laid out on the table.

Today... well, today is still TBD but yesterday was a triumph. The first day I set an official writing goal for myself and I surpassed it. Almost doubled it, actually. But so far today has been struggle. I was attempting to writing this piece (I'll refer to it as MC for future reference) in third person because I know in later stories I hope to have more than just one POV. It's not working out so well for me. I relate better to characters when I write in first person, just as I do when I read.

So, I'm giving in. At least for now, MC will be first person in the POV of my female protagonist.

And in looking at the journal post, I see that I use the word "so" far too much at the start of paragraphs...

So, I'll be doing so research for a new word to use in place of "so."

Hope everyone has a good weekend!