#IWSG Oh I Am Feeling So Frustrated! #Writing #Amwriting (or not)

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Where did the month go? I’d nearly forgotten what day it was!

Life has been stressful this past 30 plus days which has kept me from truly focusing on writing. And I really wanted to go all out for this year’s NaNoWriMo but, that never really happened.

Oh well.  Perhaps next year.

How do writers who are also parents, a spouse, with full time jobs find the mental energy or ability to keep the focus until a project or book is done? I’d really love to know!

 

 

#NaNoWriMo #IWSG: Finding Inspiration

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NaNoWriMo Time!

It’s November and many of you are probably participating in the NaNoWriMo. I am as well. And so far, I’m not off to a very good start sitting at just a little over 3,000 words. Granted, my actual goal for this project isn’t to write 50k but 12k words so if I take that into consideration I’m actually right on par.

I’ve been doing NaNo on and off since 2008, and with each of them I tend to run out of steam in the next week or so.

The dreaded “muddle middle.”

Finding Inspiration To Keep It Going

The key is not to give up on the story, but find inspiration to jump start the writing process. Here are a few that I’ve used:

!. Create a playlist or soundtrack of your novel.  This works for me nearly every time. You can use You Tube or Apple Music to set up a playlist.  Pandora is another good one.  I use mainly You Tube. What about you?

2. If your story was to be made into a movie, which actors/actresses would you want to play the parts of your main characters? I am in the process of doing this for my NaNo project.  I will post on this later.

3. Pick one or more characters and interview them.  Sometime it’s just a matter of getting to know your main characters better that will jump start the creative juice.

4. Create a trailer for your project.  I love doing this!  I use Kizoa to create trailers for various projects.  This can help you flesh out the major plot/character arcs of your story.

 

Now, what about you? What methods do you use for inspiration?

 

It Is Finished #IWSG #Writing

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As a writer, it is a good feeling when you can declare a draft of your book finished.  At least until it’s time to begin the edit and revision process.

How many times are you able to do this?

A dozen of times? More?

For me, I was able to do this once.

One time.

It was a book I wrote back in 2008 for the National Novel Writing Month. It was titled Hope Falls.  It was a science fiction-horror story.

I still have this draft although I am not sure if it will ever be published.

The story and the characters remain in my head. They want their story to be told.

But there are so many plot holes and changes that must be made.

So much…

Yeah, I’m intimidated as heck.

So, it continues to sit.  I may get to it. Then again, I may not.

Wait, my muse is telling that I did complete one other book.

I wouldn’t call it a book; it was more of a novelette sized story. A romance one that I wrote specifically for Wattpad. Okay, okay I finished two books.

Drafts.

This newest story may have more hope to see publication of some form. And since it was so short, I don’t feel quite so intimidated to go back and start revising.

Does size really matters? Does this means that the bigger the project the more intimidating it appears when you begin the editing phase?

Hmm..it is true that I tend to focus the majority of my time on the short stories, and more often than not, they are released into the world for others to read. And in fact, just about every book I’ve attempted have been abandoned before I even get to the middle part.

What does this mean for me?

Perhaps I’m not cut out (or destined) to be that prolific writer who could churn out more than two books each year (Nora Roberts is the first to come to mind), and I’m really okay with that. After writing for as long as I have, I have learned to take the middle ground in that I really enjoy (and prefer) to write the shorter stories, and that there is absolutely nothing wrong with that!

What about you? Do you find it challenging to complete a long story (or a book)?

 

#IWSG #Writing #Writerslife Where I’d Love To Write My Next Story

This month’s question for IWSG (for more  info on the Insecure Writer’s Support Group click here): If you could pick one place in the world to sit and write your next story, where would it be and why?

 

There are so many places around the world I’d love to visit and use as inspiration for a story; but, I kept going back to one general area.

Adirondack Mountains. 

And a place where I would write that story?

Mirror Lake Inn. 

These mountains are where I grew up. A place I will always call home no matter where I live. It’s a place where my heart and soul are constantly longing to return to. And it’s a place I haven’t been back to for twenty years.

*Sigh*

Mirror Lake Inn is a resort located in Lake Placid.

Lake Placid, New York
Site of 1932 & 1980 Winter Olympics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lake Placid is a quaint but magical village just a short seventeen miles from my childhood home.

Downtown Lake Placid

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And why Mirror Lake Inn?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As I grew up in the area, I’ve always heard how great this place was.  And being a resort, I’d love to come here where all my needs are met so I can focus on the writing while basking in the beauty of my surroundings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Judging from the pics, this place is gorgeous!

Spending a week here would do wonders for my muse and for my mental health. I’d be outdoors every moment of the day for sure!  Best time to visit?  These mountains are simply breathtaking in the fall so that would be my first choice.

Can I afford this?

Mmm, at this point, not really. But who says I can’t dream about visiting one day?

*Sigh*

 

 

(I apologize if you see huge gaps in between images and paragraphs.  WordPress won’t allow me to format them any closer).

 

(Un)Expectations #Writing #IWSG

This month’s question: Has your writing ever taken you by surprise?

 

When I penned my very first story at the age of eleven, I had no expectations on where writing would take me. What started out as a challenge ended up being a lifeline that I’ve used time and time again.

Writing took me on a journey to places I never dreamed I visit. Experiences I never thought I’d ever partake in. It enabled me to meet like-minded individuals from all over the world, from all walks of life.

Writing changed me.

In fact, I think it might have saved my life more times than I care to admit. Whether or not it kept me from insanity…well, that depends on who you ask!

Writing has been the one constant in my life while the rest has been full of chaos and changes.

I guess what I never expected when I wrote that fateful story all those years ago was how writing would change my life.

Something it’s still doing.

As I sit here at my desk, I see a future that holds more changes and yes, even heartaches. But knowing that I have my writing to hold on to as I travel through the possible dark path ahead, I believe I will be just fine.

 

Does Free Time Increase/Decrease Your #Writing Productivity? #IWSG

*This post for the monthly IWSG is a bit late but hey, better late than never!  

 

From where I’m sitting, it’s the 4th of July.  The house is quiet.  My guys are off in New York for another week so I have the place all to myself.

Now, it’s just a matter of getting myself focused enough to work on a few projects that I know I should be working on.

Alas, distractions abound!

The silence is too loud. The house too empty.

So, I’ve been binging on rom-com movies as well as all of the Jaws films. Oh, and don’t forget the Bourne’s saga.

Sheesh.

And the few times I did manage to sit my butt down, the cats acted up.

Meaning, they’ve been staging break-outs by busting through the window screens in the sunroom. And I mean, they destroyed all three screens! I was so livid.

How do I explain this to hubby?

Anyhoo, I’ve spent at least two to three hours of my time in the past three days hunting down and rounding up the cats that did get outside.  Now, I’m faced with having to keep my house closed up (and the weather’s gorgeous outdoors!) for fear of them busting through other window screens.

Distractions. And more distractions.

I’d thought that with the guys gone and my having all this abundant free time to spend on writing would enable me to be very productive.

In fact, it’s been totally the opposite!

Grr…

I’m finding that having certain constraints with the guys around actually kept me more focused and in line.  Being busier with life actually yielded more fruits where with too much free time and no constraints whatsoever have caused me to be so — lazy.

Now, I’m down to the last five plus days to get done what I should have been working on all along. Question is, will I be able to stay focused long enough to do it?

What about you? Does having free time inhibits your productivity rather than enhances it?

#IWSG The Horror and Suspense of Life

This post is for IWSG (Insecure Writer’s Support Group), and this month’s question: Of all the genres you read and write, which is your favorite to write in and why?

 

Right from the get-go, I’ve always been drawn to the darker sides of things. My first story I ever wrote (around eleven years old) was about a creepy house where a girl entered on a dare and discovered a decapitated head in a fridge.

Pretty morbid, eh?

So, I started with horror, then it became horror-paranormal to horror-apocalyptic, and now it’s mainly suspense.  Through these genres, the common theme always centered around death.

When my cousin (and best friend at the time) Darren passed away just before our fourteenth birthdays, I was hit with the stark reality that we were not invincible or immortal.  That even kids die.

Since then, I have experienced several other deaths of family members and friends.  Many of them died well before they were at the peak of their lives, or even able to realized their dreams.

This have always weighed heavily on me.

And showed up in pretty much whatever I wrote be it a short story or a poem.

A loss of some form. The darkness that’s constantly there.   .

I enjoy writing both horror and suspense mainly because it’s cathartic for my broken heart, and it’s my way of dealing with the pain.

What about you? What’s your favorite genre to write/read? Why? I love to know!

 

At the Crossroads #IWSG #Writing

Have you ever gone through a period of time when no matter how hard you tried to do something, or in my case – complete a novel, you just can’t quite get there?

For years and years, I believed I was meant to be a fiction writer especially of suspenseful (and at times, horror) stories.  I still enjoy writing these stuff, but there’s a growing part of me that keeps telling me to shift my focus/attention to poetry and essays. I’ve resisted, well I tried to anyway, against this quiet tugging until recently.

In February and April of this year, I’ve participated in various month-long blogging/writing challenges where my original intentions were to focus on flash/micro fiction (suspense/horror kinds) and maybe sprinkle a few poems in there.

Well, I ended up writing mainly poetry. It wasn’t planned. It just happened that way.

As I wrote these poems, it occurred to me how the muse had tricked me (by the way, I’m nicknaming her “Trickster” from now on). All through these two months, whenever I picked up a pen (hovered my fingers over the keyboard), my first instinct was to write poetry – not fiction.

Wow…it hit me then (specifically, during the last week of April). I might have already said this in a guest post I wrote for another blog, but never truly believed in my heart at the time — I’m a writer of many things, but the essence of me is a poet.

Okay, I will admit that the Trickster (formerly known at “muse”) had been right all along — but…

Now what?

Caged #IWSG

“Stone walls do not a prison make,
Nor iron bars a cage.”
― Richard Lovelace

For those of us who are attempting or have attempted to write our story (I’m referring to the story of our lives whether it’s a memoir or through short stories or poems), something always seem to stop us from finishing it (or in my case, starting).  It’s like there this solid wall blocking my way, more specifically my pen, from getting the words out of my head.

The words are there and so are the images, but I feel like my head (or something else altogether) is like a cage keeping them within invisible bars.

It is so utterly frustrating.

I keep asking myself – what’s holding me back?

Fear.

Fear of what? 

Of hurting someone who I love? Or, hurting myself?

Maybe both.

Fear of the truth. Of finally allowing myself to be freed of all the pain I kept locked in

A writer who’s caged by past regrets and unwilling to let them go because she believes she deserves all the pain she feels.

How messed up is that?

My heart knows I must write my story, but convincing whatever part of me that’s holding the words back has been a battle I’ve fought for years.

A battle I fear I will ultimately lose.

What about you? Are you struggling to free your words?

#IwSG Computer and Writing Woes

Contemplative

It seems that the hard drive on my computer has crashed. So am writing this post on my tablet which isn’t fun nor easy. I’m unsure if my computer is salvagable. Thank goodness I had most of my stuff backed up. For the time being I might not be posting as often until I have a working computer.  Hello notebook. Oh and hello books I’ve been meaning to read. 😃

 

 

Anyone else been in this predictament before? How did you handle it?