Harry Potter World Trip

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It happened! I got to go to Harry Potter World at Universal Studios in Florida last week! Yeek!!

It was awesome, no doubt about it, and there just wasn’t enough time to see every little thing. I fully intend to go back again someday in the future.

Just look at that castle! A perfect recreation of Hogwarts from the movies, and it’s so interactive while you’re waiting in line.

If you don’t want spoilers for the theme park, stop reading here and just enjoy the pictures instead.

First, when my friend and I checked into our hotel, I was delighted to see it was designed to be completely 1960s. Look at the room!

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Neat, huh? I thought so.

And here’s my bed.

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I thought the colors and artwork and decor was fabulous. And our view wasn’t too bad, either!

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That’s a lazy river pool down there, and if you look closely across the pool, you can see another wing of the hotel and a little of what it looked like from the outside. I didn’t take a picture of it, but you could also see the top of Hogwarts from just outside the door of my hotel.

I didn’t take nearly as many pictures as I’d intended because I just wanted to soak it all in.

Since my friend and I stayed at a Universal hotel (for much less than you’d expect), we got into the park an hour early. We were walking through Diagon Alley at 7:00 in the morning! Yikes! But totally worth it. Here’s the first shot of Diagon Alley in the early morning hours.

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I wasn’t expecting the dragon on top, but it was pretty cool, and you’ll see why in a minute.

We immediately raced to Gringotts because that was the newest ride. We stood in line for about an hour, only to have it announced that something was wrong with the ride. BOO!!! However, they gave us one-time-only fast-passes to use later that day, so we came back a few hours later and got to skip the line.

BEST RIDE EVER! Seriously, it was my favorite ride of the day. So interactive and a ton of fun.

Here’s some more Diagon Alley.

Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes.

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The hole in the brick wall behind The Leaky Cauldron.

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Another shot of Gringotts.

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Just another cool Diagon Alley pic. We also went to Knockturn Alley, but it was too dark (as it should be) to take pictures.

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And the awesome-sauce-ness of Gringotts:

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The dragon breathes smoke!! Sweet!

Many of the shops were similar in appearance, so I didn’t snap pics of them all.

Once we were done looking around there, we headed to Hogsmeade via the Hogwarts Express. At platform 9 3/4.

SQUEE!!!

Every single thing there is interactive, including when you wait in line and are on the train. So much to see and do, that you’re not really bored waiting for so long.

There are LOTS of animatronic robots of all sorts of HP characters, as well as visuals and interactive images of Harry, Ron, and Hermione.

So, here I was! And yes, there is a way to take a pic as if you’re going through an actual wall to get to the platform. But the line was moving and I didn’t get a chance. Oh, well. Next time! 🙂

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And there she is! The Hogwarts Express!

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And the first picture of Hogsmeade Village:

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Before you ask… YES. I did get a butterbeer. And it was delicious! Beyond tasty. Yum!!

And here’s Honeydukes. I didn’t buy anything there because I was so full after lunch. But it was awesome seeing all the things in the books and movies for sale right in front of me.

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And again, here is the castle:

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This ride was fun, but man, did it make me feel queasy. And I have a super solid stomach on rides, but this made me feel a bit sick afterwards. It was a ton of fun, though. All of the rides were. I can honestly say there wasn’t one thing I saw or experienced that didn’t 100% live up to my expectations.

After a morning/early afternoon of rides and such, my friend and I shopped for a bit. I could have done some SERIOUS damage there, but I didn’t check any luggage on the airplane, so anything I bought had to fit into my carry-on.

I won’t go into everything I bought, but the thing I love the most is the wand. Of course. 🙂

Here it is:

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Sorry for the poor quality. I know it’s far away and dark. You can look it up online once you find out which one it is.

Can any of you guess whose this is? Hmm???

I’ll give you three guesses.

No. It’s not Harry’s.

No. It’s not Hermione’s.

No. It’s not Ron’s. Or Dumbledore’s. Or Voldemort’s. Or Ginny’s. Or Sirius’s.

Any other guesses???

All right. I’ll tell you.

It’s Mad-Eye’s!!!

Yep! I loved it so much, and it’s actually the heaviest wand they sell. The lovely witch who sold it to me said “Even a muggle like yourself could do magic with this thing.”

Ha! They were all so into their roles. Loved it.

Mad-Eye is one of my very favorite characters. I was bummed they didn’t sell Hagrid’s pink umbrella wand, because if they had, that’d be the one I’d have bought.

So, there you have it. A wonderful trip to HP World. It was a fabulous day and an experience I’ll never forget.

I can’t wait to go back!

Happy writing!

“I would like to be remembered as someone who did they best she could with the talent she had.” ~ J.K. Rowling

“Anything’s possible if you’ve got enough nerve.” ~ J.K. Rowling

“Secretly we’re all a little more absurd than we make ourselves out to be.” ~ J.K. Rowling

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Top Ten Tuesday – Books To Give Away

It’s that day again!

Top Ten Tuesday

This week’s Top Ten list by the lovely people at The Broke and the Bookish is a topic that took me some time to think about. It was Top Ten Books I’d Give to Readers Who Have Never Read X. Over at their blog, they picked historical fiction. In a similar fashion, I’m going to pick the Classics. Top Ten Books I’d Give to Readers Who Have Never Read the Classics.

1. Shakespeare. Shakespeare, Shakespeare, ANYTHING Shakespeare! I know this isn’t a book per se, but he is my top pick for anything classical. I especially love his sonnets, but I know poetry isn’t for everyone. My favorite play is Macbeth, which is much darker and brooding than my normal taste allows for. I’ve never read anything by Shakespeare I didn’t like. I understand the classics aren’t for everyone, but I think we all enjoy a good spooky story. Macbeth is a great place to start.

2. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. Many modern authors have criticizes Jane’s writing, but she was a female author in the early 1800s… of course she’d write about love and gossip and scandal and family. Although Pride and Prejudice isn’t my favorite Austen book, it is the favorite of the general population. What I think appeals more to people who may not like the classics is the stupidity of the Bennet women and their antics. I’m excluding Jane and Lizzie, of course. It’s hilarious to watch these women make fools of themselves. The humor in that book, alone, makes it worth the read. 

3. The Divine Comedy/Dante’s Inferno by Dante Alighieri. Instead of reading the actual work, which is quite difficult, I’d go ahead and pick up a modernized version of it so that it makes sense. When I first read it, I had to write down everything that didn’t make sense to me and look it up. Let’s just say it was a long read. But if you get, say, this version, it’ll be easier to read. Many current literary experts agree that the two most prominent writers of classical literature are Dante and Shakespeare. Dante’s work is dark and imaginative, and I always learn some tidbit about creativity and writing from it. 

4. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle – I’m not really sure if he’s considered a classical author, but I consider him to be one. These books/stories are a lot easier for people who don’t like classical literature to swallow. They’re generally pretty short, and have a certain storytelling rhythm that’s repeated in each tale (the adventure/mystery happens, then the backstory is explained for the reason behind it). It’s fairly straightforward stuff, but fun to read and extraordinary in detail. If you know anything about Sherlock, it’s how smart he is and how much he notices every little detail. That comes through in the books in a subtle way, and it’s brilliant.

5. 1984 by George Orwell. I read this book in high school and was completely weirded out by it. I’m even more so now because of how much written in that book is now coming to fruition. Big Brother, indeed. He was spot on. It’s not a difficult read, nor is it overly long. One of my faves, for sure.

6. Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes. This was my favorite book in high school. I couldn’t even pinpoint why. It was depressing most of the time, but such an easy and interesting read. It was originally a short story, but then later turned into a novel. For those who haven’t heard of it, the story centers around Algernon, a laboratory mouse who has experimental surgery to make him more intelligent. His changes are recorded and observed by Charlie Gordon, who is mentally disabled, and the first human subject in the experiment. What happens to Algernon eventually happens to Charlie, and it’s a testimony to the human condition and the morality/ethics of human and animal experimentation. I consider it a bit satiric, which I like in the classics.

7. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. This is a must read for everyone, whether they like the classics or not. Atticus Finch imparts some crazy good philosophy and is a moral hero for many people. It’s a quote-worthy book unlike many others.

8. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. For those of you who’ve followed me for a while, you’ll know that he is one of my favorite authors and has influenced my writing the most (along with L.M. Montgomery). I wouldn’t recommend LOTR to people who haven’t read the classics because it’s much meatier and harder to get into. But The Hobbit is a fast read full of adventure, and it opens up the world of Middle Earth and all the wonder of Tolkien’s genius. 

9. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery. She, along with Tolkien, are the writers I admire the most. However, the story of a young orphan girl who has a tendency to rant on and on in long soliloquies is not for the faint of heart. It’s set in Canada in the late 1800s, early 1900s, and follows the hilarious antics of an orphan who gets herself into a lot of trouble because she’s so curious and full of life. She’s my favorite literary heroine, and always will be.

10. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Another gritty, morally enlightening book that puts things into perspective on how we treat people who are different than us. It’s set in Puritanical Massachusetts in the mid 1600s, so you can imagine how people acted and how they talked. But it’s not a long book, and there are a lot of good lessons to be learned. 

 

Wow. That was hard. There are so many other classic books I would love to recommend: Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, The Secret Garden, Moby Dick, The Phantom of the Opera, Little Women, The Count of Monte Cristo… the list could go on for pages.

What do you think of my choices? Do you like the classics or would you ever consider reading them? Why or why not? I used to hate them, myself, but now I can’t get enough of them!

Happy writing!

Very Inspiring Blogger Award? Moi?

The wonderful Sara has nominated me for the “Very Inspiring Blogger Award!” How exciting! I was pretty shocked to get this, mostly because I’ve been a bit absent from the blogosphere the last few weeks, but I’m honored to be nominated.

Very Inspiring Blogger

 

If you haven’t checked out Sara’s blog, you need to. And I mean NEED. It’s pretty faboo, so go on over and say hello!

The guidelines of the award are:

1.Thank and link to the amazing person who nominated you.

2.List the rules and display the award.

3.Share seven facts about yourself.

4.Nominate 15 other amazing blogs and comment on their posts to let them know they have been nominated

5.Proudly display the award logo on your blog and follow the blogger who nominated you.

These are some pretty sweet (and easy!) guidelines, but I’ve also seen other versions of this award that ask you to describe three things that have inspired you recently. So I’m adding that guideline to mine, as well, because I think it’s a great idea.

6. Describe three things that have inspired you recently.

 

The following facts shed a little more light on who I am:

1. I’ve been in choirs since I was seven years old, and sang in Carnegie Hall with my collegiate choir. Amazing!

2. I am not a caffeine junkie. Not. I hate coffee, can barely stomach tea, get heartburn from soda, and can’t stand energy drinks. I’m usually pretty zippy without them. 

3. I don’t nap. Or I rarely do. If I’m sick or have had less than 4 hours of sleep per night for a few nights in a row, then I’ll nap. Otherwise, I sleep like a rock at night. (Another reason not to drink caffeine).

4. My mom used to call me G.G. when I was younger, short for Gentle Giant (because I’m so tall), but I was ruthless playing sports. I guess that’s where all my violence and aggression ended up. It’s still like that today. I’m a gentle, sweet person until you get me playing a sport. Then I’ll try my best to wipe the floor with you. 

5. I’m what most people call an “old soul.” I do NOT understand my generation at all. (Yes, that’s a generalization, and yes, I realize not everyone is like that. Certainly not my blogging friends, but definitely the people I’m surrounded by). Growing up, I was amazed at how rude people were, and how little work they did while getting things I could only dream of. I’m very grateful to my parents (Love you, Mom and Dad!) for having instilled in me respect for others and a hard-working attitude. I got along better with my classmates’ parents than I did with my classmates. True story. Obviously, I was quite unpopular, but I’m very grateful for that. It’s a huge part of what’s made me creative and able to empathize with others.

6. I cannot wear the color red. I’m pale as a ghost 99% of the year. Even when I get “color” in the summer, it just fades back to marshmallow white. With red undertones in my skin, I can’t wear the lovely color. And it makes me sad. 😦 All you women who can wear red, wear some for me, okay? Same goes for hats. My head is too big for them. Literally. So slap on a fedora, or a beret, or a nightcap or something and tell me all about it!

7. The camp my MC attends in my MG fantasy book is HEAVILY influenced by the camp I went to as a child, as well as the camp I worked at for kids with special needs during the summers of college. If I hadn’t worked there, I’d have taken more classes and graduated early, but this was an experience that was unbeatable. The best and hardest weeks of my life each summer. 

There are my facts! Random and fun, right?

As for three things that have inspired me recently…

1. Watching a good (and young) friend of mine battle breast cancer with an attitude that can’t be beat. I’ve never seen anyone deal so well with such a hard diagnosis. She’s upbeat and determined to whip this thing. She inspires me every day.

2. The lengths to which a friend of mine is planning my stay with her in Florida in October. I don’t get to see her that much, but knowing how much effort she’s putting into the trip and my time there makes me realize how lucky I am to have her as a friend, and it makes me want to reach out to all those friends of mine I haven’t seen or talked to in a while.

3. The beauty of an afternoon thunderstorm. I love thunderstorms in the summer. It’s such a display of power and beauty. They’re always inspiring to me. 

I know there are many more interesting and thought-provoking things happening in the world that are inspirational, and the list could go on for pages, but I’ll leave you with those three.

My nominees for this cool award are:

1. Herminia Chow at aspiringwriter22. I think I comment on pretty much every one of her posts. We get along famously!

2. Kate over at Kate’s Bookshelf. She and I have a lot in common, and it’s cool to see the similarities.

3. Emily at BumblesBooks. She’s said it to me, I think I’ve said it to her: we’re kindred spirits in this bloggy universe. Emily, have we ever disagreed about something? I can’t think of one single time! 🙂

4. Sarah J. Carlson over at sjoycarlson. Another blogging buddy whose posts always hit me right where I need to hear it. 

5. Caroline Sibley at her lovely blog. She and I agree and chat about so many cool books and ideas. I’m never disappointed when I visit her blog. Love it!

 

There. I’m only nominating five bloggers. There are so many others I’d nominate, but these ladies hit the top at this time. I would have included John, but I know he’s nominated for a gazillion awards, so… you’ve escaped my clutches this time, John.

I look forward to reading their random facts and continuing to be amazed by my blogging buddies.

Happy writing!

Meet My Character Blog Tour

This will be interesting!

I was nominated by the lovely Sara DeLaVergne for a blog tour with questions about the main character in my WIP. It’s a chance to get to know my MC with a few basic questions that will reveal a little about who she is.

And away we go!

1. What is the name of your character? Is he/she fictional or a historic person?

Ava Mae Monaghan. She is completely fictional.

2. When and where is the story set?

The story begins in March of 2005, when Ava is 12 years old, in a tiny made-up town in northern Michigan called Bluffton. But she’s not there for very long once the action begins. Pretty soon she’s taken to a centuries-old castle, then an island in the North Sea that is hidden by a pearlescent mist to everyone except those who are meant to be there.

3. What should we know about him/her?

Ava is a stubborn little cuss who can talk to animals and whose midnight blue eyes turn blood red when she is enraged by something. Not just a little angry, but a serious fit of rage. And she has the capacity to hurt people with what happens when her eyes turn red, although she is, by nature, a non-violent person. There is something she doesn’t know about in her history that makes her act this way, and it’s very hard to control.

Also, she has severe retrograde amnesia from an accident that caused a brain injury. She’s had it since she was five and doesn’t remember the first years of her life. She doesn’t know she has it, though, since her dad made up false memories for her to protect her from the life that nearly killed her when she was young.

4. What is the main conflict? What messes up his/her life?

Ava is kidnapped by people associated with her young life and she’s finally told who and what she is. She’s part of a magical race of beings (phantoms) that act as protectors of humans and, you can probably guess, there’s something special about Ava that sets her apart from the rest of her race, which is why she was targeted as a young child and nearly killed. Her family is the closest thing the phantoms have to royalty because of certain gifts and sacrifices they make for the good of the phantom race.

The rest of the story is her setting out to prove she can live up to her mother’s talents, who was the greatest living phantom at the time of her death, which was right after Ava’s brain injury. Ava needs to prove to herself, and the rest of the phantom community (who all hate her because of what she is due to something an ancestor did 300 years ago), that she can be what they need her to be. This takes place at boot camp by the means of Ava protecting a book that keeps all of the phantoms’ secrets (written in code, of course) from the hands of the bad guys. She sacrifices herself to keep the secrets of the phantoms safe from evil clutches. 

5. What is the personal goal of the character?

Whoops! Looks like I answered this in the question above. My bad. 🙂

6. Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?

The title is: The Phantom Apprentice: Book of the Scribes. Since I’m actively seeking representation for traditional publishing, there isn’t any more information than what you’ve read here.

7. When can we expect the book to be published?

Ooooo!!! If I had my way, it’d be published tomorrow! I’ve been querying since February and had one agent request the full manuscript, but so far, I’ve received polite rejections. I’m not giving up, though, so I’m hoping to be in print no later than 2017. Yikes! I wish it could be sooner, but I’m being realistic. Especially since this is the first in a series of middle grade novels.

 

That’s about it, folks! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading a little about Ava. She’s been with me for over ten years, so her and I are quite close. The rest of the series is already mapped out, and I wish I could divulge, but I wouldn’t want to give too much away.

As for nominations, I’d like to hear from Caroline SibleyHerminia ChowE.H. Bates, and YOU! I’d like everyone to participate that would like the chance to chat about their characters. I always love to learn more about my bloggy friends’ stories.

So, happy writing, all!

 

“When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.” 
― Ernest HemingwayDeath in the Afternoon

“You take people, you put them on a journey, you give them peril, you find out who they really are.” 
― Joss Whedon

“I don’t know where people got the idea that characters in books are supposed to be likable. Books are not in the business of creating merely likeable characters with whom you can have some simple identification with. Books are in the business of creating great stories that make you’re brain go ahhbdgbdmerhbergurhbudgerbudbaaarr.” 
― John Green

Revised… Again!

Child Fatigue

Hello, all!

Whew! Sorry, again, for being gone so long from the blogosphere. This week is the last for a while that includes 60-70+ working hours, so I’m hoping to resume regular posts next week.

Miraculously, amidst all the insanity of work, I was able to get a substantial rewrite done Friday through Sunday. I do not have any time any other days of the week, so I crammed about two weeks worth of rewrites into three days.

I thought I had finished my first book, but every few weeks I get a good idea for a revision or a rewrite.

The latest one came about a week ago, and it nagged me all week until I sat down to write.

Within the span of three days, I completely rewrote, from scratch, the first 40 pages (about 12,000 words) of my first book. It was exhilarating, but exhausting, and I was even more tired when I woke up and had to go to work today.

Since I don’t yet have an agent or publishing deal, I can revise all I want, but I was hoping not to do any more major rewrites/revisions until I got an editor.

However, every time I take a step back from it for a few weeks/month, I come back at it with fresh eyes for all the mistakes, inconsistencies, or lack of word-magic.

Does that happen with the rest of you? I spent almost ten years finishing the first book while planning the seven book series it’s a part of, but I still find things I want to change. No matter how much I love my book, I know I’ll never be 100% happy with it. But every rewrite gets me closer to what I’ve imagined for the series.

I’m so glad I took time away from the book. (This is probably the fourth or fifth revision/rewrite). I can’t afford to hire an editor, so all of my revisions are based on feedback from my beta readers. (Who are not always the most helpful).

I’m happy to say that book two in the series is coming along nicely, with much more word-magic than book one (another reason I’m rewriting portions of it).

While I continue to revise my manuscript, I’m curious what the rest of you are working on since I’ve been hit-or-miss for the last few weeks with my blogging and such.

I can’t wait to hear what you’re up to! So spill!

Happy writing!

 

“The more you leave out, the more you highlight what you leave in.”
― Henry Green

“I’ve found the best way to revise your own work is to pretend that somebody else wrote it and then to rip the living shit out of it.”
― Don Roff

Top Ten Tuesday – Favorite TV Shows or Movies

Hey everyone!

Sorry, again, for the absence from the blogosphere. I’m really hoping to get back on a semi-regular blogging schedule once the insanity from work calms down after the next two weeks.

Today is Tuesday, so I’m doing another Top Ten Tuesday inspired by the fabulous people at The Broke and the Bookish blog.

Today’s topic… Favorite TV shows or movies. Movies would be too hard for me, I think. My top five are fairly solid, but after that it gets dicey. I like more movies than TV shows, so it’ll be easier to snag my top ten TV shows.

And here they are!

1. Sherlock – The current BBC version. LOVE IT! Benedict Cumberbatch is my favorite actor (and he’s also the physical inspiration for my villain), so I had to check it out when it first came out. I so wish they had the time to put the seasons closer together than TWO YEARS APART!!! The next season isn’t due out until January 2016. *Whimper*

2. M*A*S*H – Yes, the army show from the 70s/80s. I adore the characters and although they find humor in their situation, there are so many serious and enlightening moments regarding war.

3. Downton Abbey – This was a serious contender for numbers one and two, and often, they change around. I love historical anything, but especially historical shows. You’ll probably see a fair amount of British shows in this queue, as well (see what I did there?), because I’m a bit of an anglophile. And Maggie Smith (aka Professor MacGonagall), cannot be beat!

4. The Big Bang Theory – These dudes are hilarious, and Jim Parsons does a phenomenal job as Sheldon. He definitely deserves the Emmy awards he’s received for that part.

5. Doctor Who – Another contender for the top slots. It’s a combination of so many fabulous loves of mine, and the details in the storyline are out of this world! (Literally and figuratively). Another great example of how small details come back in big ways.

6. Seaquest – This show was only on for three seasons, but I loved them all! The first season is the best, of course. It combines a lot of things I love: science, the ocean, mythology, good vs. evil… Love it!

7. Bones – I have quite a few seasons of this on DVD, and I used to watch it over and over again. They deal with some heavy stuff, but manage to keep some lighthearted, hilarious moments in it. And I’m sorry, but David Boreanaz is in my top 10 favorite good looking guys.

8. CSI – NY – This one held the top slot for a few years, but so much else has come about and changed since then, but I still love it. The relationship between Danny and Lindsay is probably my favorite on-screen romance. Remember that my favorite literary couple is Anne and Gilbert from Anne of Green Gables. Again, combines science, mystery, romance, humor… all the best stuff!

9. Supernatural – This one might move up the ranks a bit in the next few months as I’ve just started watching it. The Winchester boys are *ahem* pretty darn hot. But the plot is awesome and pokes fun at a lot of other shows. (Can you tell I like sci-fi/fantasy yet?)

10. Phineas and Ferb – Yep. Rounding out my top ten is a sweet Disney Channel original series. I don’t even know if I can explain what it’s about, but it’s pretty stinkin’ awesome! I started watching it when I nannied for a family during grad school and I got hooked. I still watch it when I can. And yes – it is a cartoon. I’m not ashamed.

 

There you have it! My top ten TV shows of all time!

On another note, I’m super frustrated/excited/upset because, although I’ve finished the first book in my MG series, I had a jolt of inspiration on how to rewrite the beginning. Again. It’s been rewritten at least 20 times, but each time it gets better.

I take comfort in the fact that other writers do this all the time. Even after it gets to a publisher/editor. J.K. Rowling said she’d wanted to use the beginning of book six (The Half Blood Prince) since she started writing the Harry Potter series.

So now, here I am… back to the beginning. I’m hoping it’s just the first 30-50 pages or so… but we’ll see where it takes me. Hopefully not too far down the rabbit hole.

Happy Writing!

 

“I have rewritten — often several times — every word I have ever published. My pencils outlast their erasers.”
― Vladimir NabokovSpeak, Memory

“Rewriting is the crucible where books are born.”
― Cathryn Louis

“When asked about rewriting, Ernest Hemingway said that he rewrote the ending to A Farewell to Arms thirty-nine times before he was satisfied. Vladimir Nabokov wrote that spontaneous eloquence seemed like a miracle and that he rewrote every word he ever published, and often several times. And Mark Strand, former poet laureate, says that each of his poems sometimes goes through forty to fifty drafts before it is finished.”
― Susan M. TiberghienOne Year to a Writing Life: Twelve Lessons to Deepen Every Writer’s Art and Craft

Top Ten Tuesday – Blogging Confessions

Top Ten Tuesday

 

(Credit: The Broke and The Bookish)

Today’s entry, since my brain is mush from working too much, is thankfully inspired and handed to me by the blog The Broke and the Bookish. They are the wonderful people who came up with Top Ten Tuesday.

This week’s Top Ten List is Blogging Confessions. So, here it goes!

1. I fiercely edit my posts. I re-read them at least three or four times before posting to check for grammar, punctuation, and flow. Not that I’m always successful. Just a bit anal retentive.

2. I haven’t followed too many new blogs recently because I don’t have time to get through my feed every day.

3. I have liked a post without reading the whole thing, but it’s pretty rare. If something appeals to me, I’ll read it. If not, I skip on by without liking or reading. Just a personal preference.

4. I’ve learned more about writing in the last few months of blogging than I have in the last five years. So many writers… so much advice… so little time.

5. I don’t have as many followers as I “should” considering the length of time I’ve been blogging. But I don’t really care. I’m not on Twitter, I don’t post my entries on Facebook, and I don’t market the heck out of my blog. And I’m perfectly okay with that. I love my followers, and this blog isn’t about numbers as it is finding people I can learn with and from. So, thank you, followers! I love you all!

6. I can go on blogging sprees and, conversely, remain off WP for days at a time. I like both. As much as I love my blog, sometimes I just need a few days off from the blogging sphere. But I enjoy it as soon as I return.

7. I’ve skulked in a few blogs, reading every entry I could from days, weeks, and months past. Until I ran out of time or energy. Some people are just awesome, what can I say?

8. I never pre-write or “plan” my entries. I may have ideas for them ahead of time, but when it’s time to post… I just sit down and write. Kind of like my non-blogging writing style.

9. I hate reading book reviews. Seriously. Yuck. Sorry for the people that do a million of them, but I just skip right past them in my feed.

10. I’m not consistent with my blogging. Sorry! I should have a schedule and maybe pre-plan (see #8), but my work schedule is crazy and ever-changing, so I fit blogging in when I have a chance. And, if given the choice between blogging and writing my books, I’ll pick writing every time.

11. (Sorry, couldn’t help but add one more). I read too much into comments and often come away upset. It’s so hard to read sarcasm or tone of voice. Some comments leave me reflecting and thinking, others make me feel stupid, and others are worded in a way that make it seem like a personal attack on my views. I hope I’m not alone in this. Most of the comments make me smile and laugh, so these few upsetting ones are rare. I just need to grow thicker skin.

 

So, there’s a few blogging confessions from me! I’m sure that, if you ask me in a year’s time, my confessions will be totally different.

What about you? Anything you want to confess about blogging? Loves/hates/pet peeves?

Happy writing, everyone!

 

“Writing is the only way I have to explain my own life to myself.”
― Pat ConroyMy Reading Life

“I finished the [blog] post reflecting on the fact that, despite all the changes in my life, maybe I wasn’t so different after all. If I typed it, maybe I could believe it, too.”
― Stephanie Nielson