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Not Writing As Much

It’s become clear to both Rachel and me that without the NaNoWriMo sessions, we wouldn’t be writing too much.

Of course, we both enjoy writing and have a few novel drafts in the works, but after this past April’s Camp NaNoWriMo session, we both realized that we haven’t written anything original since. Even in regards to our writer’s group, with Rachel submitting parts of her Camp NaNo and me submitting pieces of an older work in progress that I tweak when needed. My Sunday Scribbles lately are stories that I tend to find hidden deep in my writing DropBox folder (on the other hand, it’s nice to be reminded of some older stories that I would love to get back to eventually).

July’s Camp session starts this Saturday and I have no idea what I’m going to do. With my latest NaNo projects, I’ve started with a novel idea that is usually the reoccurring theme in my NaNo, with shorter stories here and there to break up the monotony of just writing one story for me.

Writing is one of my favorite pastimes and needs, but I’ve been slacking in that department. I’m much more interested in writing blog posts and articles, for here, Double Jump, and perhaps a few other places. I suppose it’s a natural step after writing new genres and mediums and figuring out how and why you want to write.

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Posted by on June 28, 2017 in Home

 

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Writing Lessons from Snoopy

snoopy

As writers, I think we could learn a lot from Snoopy.

Here’s this dog — created by Charles Schulz for his famous comic Peanuts — who finds a typewriter and just goes to town with his imagination. There are plenty of comic strips where he’s trying out his stories, showing them to the other characters to get feedback, and sending them out to publishers.

snoopy

Even if, you know, the result isn’t what he wants. Nevertheless, he persists, even when he’s having bad writing days.

snoopy-writers-block1

You could always count on Snoopy breaking out his typewriter again to write, ever with the famous first line, “It was a dark and stormy night.” He took time to experiment with genres, switching it up once in a while to try science fiction, mystery, an autobiography, and even adventure stories with a beginning like, “He was a dark and stormy knight.”

No matter how many rejections from publishers, Snoopy always continued writing. He’d get tips and praise from the other characters — and the occasional snide comment or joke about his writing — doing his best to learn and grow with the critique but always staying true to his own style. To continue writing despite doubt, to continue writing what we want to write, to continue writing because we love it…

It’s why we became writers, isn’t it?

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Posted by on June 27, 2017 in Home

 

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First Drafts

dd53ff6f94882fde95239f4e52ae57fdWhat do your first drafts look like? Do they tend to be fat with every little thought about your story that you could fit into the draft? Or are your first drafts skimpier, just using enough words to tell yourself the skeleton of the story so you can embellish it later?

I suppose it comes down to your editing style as well. Perhaps you prefer to rewrite everything, having the first draft as a recipe to follow in terms of plot and character, and using your rewrite to add in all of the details for the flavor. Maybe you’re the type to take a butcher knife to your overloaded first draft, willing to cut out all of the unnecessary parts that may have found their way into the draft for the ride.

I tend to just write my first drafts as a pantser, in all honesty. Going off on tangents, meeting new characters that may take the story in a new direction, not entirely sure where the plot line will take us… I love it. You would think that my first drafts tend to be wordy with tons of detours, but there are plenty of times when my first drafts don’t seem long enough to tell the story I want to hear.

Perhaps my subconscious knows more about my work-in-progress drafts than I do.

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2017 in Home

 

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July Camp NaNo

The next session of Camp NaNoWriMo is around the corner — a week from tomorrow, in fact!

I absolutely love it when the start of a NaNo session falls on the weekend. It really helps when getting ahead in word count! At the end of July the family and I will be going away, so I’m aiming to get my 50k words in before we leave.

I finally got placed in a cabin about a day or two ago after Rachel reminded me to do so about three times. I didn’t do it in time to get placed in a cabin with my sister (oops), but it should be interesting seeing how all the people in each of our cabins do. She’s upping her goal to 100k words instead of the normal 50k words like I am, and she got placed in a cabin with some other folks with similar goals. My cabin consists entirely of people trying to reach 50k.

I’m not sure what I’m doing for camp exactly. I claimed the genre of my project as “short stories,” figuring that I would at least get some Sunday Scribbles prepped with this session. It’s on par for how I write, anyway, haha!

Anyone else gearing up for Camp next month? What are your projects going to be about?

 
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Posted by on June 23, 2017 in Home

 

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Pick One: Reader’s Edition

I’m pretty sure I’ve done something like this before on my blog, but I like making up these little games. Be sure to tell me your responses if you answer these!

  • Series or Stand-alone?
  • Physical book or eBook?
  • Reading outside on a sunny day or inside on a rainy day?
  • Reading quietly or with an audiobook?
  • Romance or horror?
  • Fantasy or mystery?
  • Slow start or a rough ending?
  • Having all day to read or small chunks of time throughout the day?
  • Hard cover or paperback?
  • Meet Cute or Meet Ugly?
 
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Posted by on June 22, 2017 in Home

 

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Bad Endings

There was this certain book I remember reading in middle school, a book that was of my own choice rather than assigned reading. I don’t recall the title nor the author of the book, but I distinctly remember the ending of the story.

The gist of the book was a fox versus a hunter. The fox was the main character, a clever animal, always managing to outwit the hunter to stay alive. The fox was the character you were supposed to root for. Yet, the last page of the story merely consisted of the hunter finally shooting and killing the fox, saying something to the effect that “the game was over.”

Middle-school me stared in disbelief at the book, upset at the ending. I had expected the hunter to somehow meet his demise, perhaps not be killed off but to stop his relentless pursuit of the fox and its family, or at least for the fox to finally get away and get its happy ending.

On one hand, the ending was unexpected, perhaps trying to teach some sort of lesson about mortality and the tragedies of life. On the other hand, I had been set up to expect a happy ending from the rest of the novel, and I hated it.

I’ve read other books where the ending wasn’t what I expected, wasn’t how I wanted the books to end, but they were satisfactory and made sense. I may not have agreed with them, but they made sense. I luckily haven’t read a book that had an ending that made me so upset since that middle school book, and I’m curious if I read the book now if it would make more sense.

Have you read any books that were great up until the ending? Any book you wanted to throw across the room in frustration?

 
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Posted by on June 21, 2017 in Home

 

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Writing a Good Book

 
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Posted by on June 20, 2017 in Home

 

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