Sunday, November 20, 2011

Mildly Epic Writing Challenges

I am a dialogue writer. I like description as well as the next person but I'm not very good at writing it. What of it I do enjoy writing, I do so by writing it through a character's eyes but still in third person. Some times they explain in out loud sometimes they do not. I don't know if that made any sense but there it is.

With my NaNoWriMo novel I've chosen to do a modern Urban Fantasy adaptation of the myth of Cupid and Psyche. My main characters speak to each other but neither see each other nor touch one another for much of the novel.

At the time I didn't realize that this was going to be a challenge. After all, I am a dialogue writer I don't need sight or touch.

Oh ho, I was wrong.

I have written quite a bit and I know exactly what I want them to say and how the conversation is going to progress. When they're snarky with each other, when they'll laugh to soothe the other. Everything like that. But it's been an issue to work out how they're going to react to one another without them seeing the other look away or wince at their own words.

I am now considering that perhaps I am an interaction writer. There is so much more that goes into dialogue than just what they say. I think I realized that before but just not to this extent. I have to admit I love how interconnected everything is.

I think this means that I am growing or something.
Huzzah me!

Word Count: 35946


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A Book (series) I am Epically Thankful for

As someone with a degree in writing, words are sort of my trade. While, I would never call myself a wordsmith, they are something that typically come fairly easily to me-with one notable exception. In my ten year relationship with Harry Potter I have never been able to find the words to describe what it is the series means to me. And now, as the movie adaptations of J.K. Rowling’s masterful epic draw to a close, I find I am trying once again to force myself to find the words, as much sought to me as the horcruxes were to Harry.

I would love to be one those people who look back at my time with Harry and equate it to my childhood but it would be a grievous error for me to do so. I was well raised by a mother who believes heavily in the power of the imagination and holds a fancy for dragons, faeries, and magic. And while, many of my peers immediately threw themselves into the world J.K. Rowling created, I did not.

At that stage of my life, I struggled greatly with relating to those who were my age. Ridiculed, and mocked for my own interests, I did not believe that something that appealed to so many of them would be anything I would be remotely interested in. I was terribly terribly mistaken and despite this I cannot feel sorry for it. When I finally began my relationship with Mr. Potter the first four of the novels were already out and many of my peers had begun to lose interest but it could not have been a better time.

Harry Potter and his amazing world are not my childhood, no, they are so much more important than that. Harry came into my life at a far more important stage, early adolescence. I had just given up my fanciful dreams of becoming a veterinarian for, perhaps even more fanciful, dreams of being a writer. But as fanciful as these dreams were they were also undeniably realistic. I was no scientist nor would I ever be able to act on some of the harder aspects of a veterinarian’s job. What I was good at was reading and making up stories.

And while it was not Harry Potter, but rather my first Tamora Pierce book, that made me want to be a writer, Harry Potter did show me the extent to which writing can impact a person. To this day when I read any book in the series I am awe struck. This awe was in no way lessened when I went to college and others in my department mocked my rather vocal love for a series they still considered childish.

At 23 I have yet to encounter anything that can bring me joy or to tears faster than Harry Potter. The series came to a proper end on paper and film but it is far from over as evident in the number of very different people all over the world impacted by Rowling’s work. And perhaps that’s the impact Harry Potter had on me; making a social misfit like me feel connected to so many others she’d never otherwise know.
My time standing shoulder to shoulder with strangers at a Harry Potter midnight release may be over but my journey with Harry and what I can learn from him has barely begun.

And, yes, I know how cliché and corny this all sounds.

I am glad for Beth Revis' contest it gave me the chance to try and put to words all of the Potter induced emotion.
The contest is a great opportunity to explore what books you prize and what they mean to you.

check out the contest post here.


Monday, November 14, 2011

Epically on Track

I am FINALLY on track and I couldn't be happier about it! I kept a weird sleep schedule and wrote my little wrists to death to do it but YES!!!!!

Word Count: 23490

So damn happy!

I've been so worried about being behind that I've fallen way behind in all of the other silly things I should be doing and now I already feel significantly less stressed.
Initially I had this big epic let-me-bitch-about-work post planned because this weekend was a cluster of epic proportions but I don't even feel like doing it.

EVEN BETTER! My ARC of Tamora Pierce's Bloodhound came in the mail today. I know, if anyone else reads this and they happen to know who she is, they're probably thinking "that book came out a couple of years ago" and to that I say you are right my friend/complete stranger who is reading my blog and if that's the case I'm not sure if I am honored and confused.
But I've kind of started collecting ARCs. All the ones I have are of books that have already come out. It was a fluke when I found a couple at a Half Priced Books and I thought they were kind of cool so I bought them. And here we are.

Anyway I just wanted to express my excitement that I AM CAUGHT UP! FINALLY! *happy dance*

Tomorrow I have a special post planned.

Ta lovelies.


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Mildly Epic Late Night Book Ramblings

Note: The title refers to the post not the book it is about. The book is definitely Epic and not just mildly so.

I am a big fan of urban fantasy books. It's kind of thing. I enjoy all manner of less-than-real creatures in my books. Urban Fantasy tends to cover that for me. It also tends to have some of the most creative story lines I've come across so far. But we'll talk about the genre later.

Right now, I want to chat about a specific, non-Urban Fantasy book. Stephanie Perkins' "Anna and the French Kiss."

I signed up for Twitter to follow authors I like, namely Cassandra Clare. She is very entertaining on Twitter. As I began following people there were a ton of comments about this book called "Anna and the French Kiss."

So, I stored it in the back of my mind and figured I would either one day check it out or totally forget about it. I'd looked it up on Amazon and it didn't really seem to be my thing. It geot a mental post-it in a non-extraordinary shade of lavender. And then one day I was walking through Borders during their closing sale (R.I.P. my favorite store friend) and lo and behold there it was, sitting misplaced on a shelf with the graphic novels.

It seemed like fate.

I purchased this tome without a home and brought it to mine. It sat a little awkwardly among its friends to begin with as I figured it would take me a couple of weeks to get to reading it. Shortly there after I decided it was time. I was going to tackle this book that had been so epically discussed throughout my limited little Twitterverse.

I was a little startled to discover that I was excited to read it. It wasn't on a lavender post-it anymore, it was at least bright green now. But At the same time I was worried about being disappointed.

Oh ho, I should not have been.

I devoured this book. Consumed it in any way I could that did not involve me doing anything to actually damage the book. I loved it. I adored it. I couldn't get enough of it. I read it and then reread it and then reread favorites parts of it that might as well have been me rereading it. I wanted to live this book. I began to ask people why I was never sent to boarding school in Paris. If they knew any boys named Etienne or St. Clair. I was a mess and loving every minute of it.

I quickly told anyone I knew who read that they NEEDED to read this book. No really there's even a comic strip about it. ( And I then passed this book off to my dear friend Laura.

Which was a good and bad thing. She would mention a part of it and I would want to read it but I couldn't because she had it. It was taking too long (realistically not that long) and I was suffering 'Anna' withdrawal. I wanted my book. I needed my book. I drove to the library and it was out so I drove to the other library and theirs too was gone. I couldn't even bring myself to be upset...well okay I could but I was still excited because PEOPLE WERE READING IT!

The story does end with me getting my book back and Laura loving it and buying her own copy and the two of us referencing it quite a bit. It finally got integrated into the shelves and has its place of honor with its spine facing outward (with over 1,300 books on seven shelves this really is an honor)

But the whole point of this long rambling post about this Epically wonderful book is that I mailed it to my friend Sam for her birthday and she's reading it now so I want to read it now but I know if I even pick it up from where I can see it on the shelf I will sit for a long time and read. This would be fine if I didn't have to been at work in six hours and wasn't planning on writing a little more of the NaNoWriMo novel. Thus I decided writing a blog post about the book would take less time than actually reading it.

And here we are.
I think I should be done now.

NaNoWriMo Word Count: 11734


Not So Epic

So, I would love to be able to tell you that this was some grand sprawling epic of love and bloodshed (Veronica and Logan anyone?) or even that it’s a quirky rom com (Romantic Comedy for those who don’t speak logical abbreviations).
                It’s really not.
                As a matter of fact it’s not much of anything to be honest. I mean, sure, it has the potential to be any number of literary genres but it’s really not solidly any of them. Mostly because not much has happened yet, assuming something happens at all.

But now that the warnings are through lets do introductions.

My name is Amy.
I have the exceedingly thrilling existence of writing (YA, hopefully), working in a chocolate shop (not half as fun as it sounds), and generally whatever it is I feel like doing in between.

I've considered doing this more than once but always hit that snag of "What in the Hell do I write?"
I've come up with an answer: Whatever the Hell I want.

So here we are.
It's potentially true that I am being over ambitious here with my first non-picture blog, my first NaNoWriMo, holiday season in retail, and sleeping. And yet... here we are.

Off to work on my NaNo novel. I'm only 4,500 words behind where I should be....

Word count: 10448


P.S. I make no promises that SFAmy won't pop by.