ravenela: (Felicity - tea otter)
Well, it's been a minute. A mixture of snow, a bout of strep throat, and some pure laziness have kept me away. Yes, I'm still rewatching Highlander, but it might be next week before we can continue with the journey.

Okay...things that are happening:

*I'm thinking about sending WHITE SPIRIT out to small publishers to see what happens. Any suggestions of good ones? Or ones to avoid?

*In the meantime, I'm working on the second draft of DON'T FEED THE TROLLS. This version feels a lot better.

*Things are still rolling along around here. I've cleaned out the bedroom and am planning to clean out the office at the end of this month. Let the spring cleaning frenzy continue!

So, how are things with you?
ravenela: (Jennifer/Duke - iloveimpala67)
Good morning! How are you?

A quick update on the state of me...

*Still querying WHITE SPIRIT and learning with each new letter. I've also pulled out DON'T FEED THE TROLLS (formerly MAYBERRY WITH MONSTERS) and am preparing to start draft two. So many plot holes, but I think I have some ideas to fill them.

*Having a lot of fun rewatching Highlander. A new post will be along as soon as I have some free time.

*Found a new laptop I like. It's an ASUS and it's affordable. My poor desktop is getting older so it is time for something new.

What have y'all been up to?
ravenela: (Write - created by mercurybard)
Happy spring, everybody! It's been a while since the last update so I thought I'd let you know I'm alive.

-The first draft of Mayberry with Monsters (no titled Don't Feed the Trolls) is finished. I'm letting it chill for a while before I revise it.

-I'm starting in on the next draft of White Spirit. This one is going a lot better. At this point, I don't feel frustrated. Always a good sign.

-Query letters will go out this summer. All they can do is tell me no. I'm hoping they want to tell me yes.

-In non-writing news, I saw the newest Captain America. No spoilers: The Winter Soldier needs the love of a good woman. And I volunteer for that position. Also, Black Widow was awesome.

So, what's new with you?
ravenela: (Felicity - tea otter)
Tuesday is upon us, and September is halfway over. How did that happen? Wait...next week is the premiere of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., isn't it? Excellent!

All right, my current status with WHITE SPIRIT is I'm almost done. One hundred pages are left. If I make a hard push, I can finish this draft and start to query it. Lots of work ahead!

Fall TV shows have started! Did anyone else watch Sleepy Hollow last night? I loved it. I loved every single minute of it. I've found a new show. Come, discuss with me in the comments!

In the meantime, back to the editing!
ravenela: (Write - created by mercurybard)
The rumors of my death have been exaggerated. I'm still around, just nose deep in edits on WHITE SPIRIT. *Sings: "This is the book that never ends...never ends...never ends." Of course, I'm probably the only one who reads my blog, but I felt I should pop up anyway.

WS is moving very slowly. The edits are making it a better book, but I wonder if I'll ever be satisfied. I probably worry too much about this book, you know? But Tristan, McKenna, and the gang have been in my head for a good while now; I want to make them shine.

But this is the last edit for this round. After this, I'm going to start querying for an agent and see what happens.

In the meantime, my YA idea, MAYBERRY WITH MONSTERS, is kicking around in my head. Dani, Jared, and their group really want their time in the spotlight. I actually wrote a rough draft for this idea once, but it had no plot. So, I'm ripping apart the original idea and starting from scratch. So far, I love my version of witches and trolls. (No, these are not your typical lumbering, giant, stupid, ugly trolls. Think Alexander Skarsgard.)

So, that's what I've been doing. What have you guys been up to?
ravenela: (McKenna/Tristan - original story)
Happy Monday, everyone! We're fresh off the weekend and all the SDCC excitement. So much picture and video pretty that I can't even process. The Man of Steel and Henry Cavill fangirl in me is flailing.

But now, it's time to put my author hat back on. See the icon there? That's my two MCs from WHITE SPIRIT - McKenna and Tristan. The manip isn't great, but the icon doesn't look too bad.

Anyway, time to check in with my #writemotivation goals. If you're playing along, and I haven't commented on your blog yet, please let me know.

1) Get halfway through the edits on WHITE SPIRIT.

Still moving along. I'm stuck at chapter five because it's a very emotional chapter. I want to make sure I'm showing the emotion and that Tristan isn't wimping out on me. I'm having trouble striking that balance. Anybody got any tips?

2) Work on it every day.

Not a good week for it. I missed three days. It was entirely my fault for being lazy. Argh!

So, how is your writing/editing/creative project coming?
ravenela: (Henry)
Happy afternoon! It's another Monday, and another month. If you live in the US, what are your plans for the fourth?

* After totaling our car two weekends ago (don't worry, everyone is fine), we bought a new car yesterday. It's a blue Honda Civic Coupe, and I adore it. Absolutely adore it.

You see, the weekend before last, Hubby and I visited his mother in SC. While driving to dinner, a driver hit our car and ripped off the back end. Everyone was fine, but the other driver kept on going. Needless to say, we were able to get a new car.

* Writing is going well. We've started a new month of Write Motivation, and here are my goals:

1) Get halfway through the edits on WHITE SPIRIT.

I've put chapters one and two to bed and have moved on to chapter three. So far, I'm very pleased. Let's hope this trend will continue.

2) Work on it every day.

Last week was hit or miss, but I had more hits than misses. This week hasn't started off very well (I have to be at work in a little while), but I'll pick up the slack tomorrow.

* Yeah, Henry Cavill is still hot. I have a few upcoming posts about that.

So, what's new with you?
ravenela: (Redhead)
This month's round of Write Motivation is ending, and I don't think I did very well. But, guys, I have an excuse! It's all this man's fault:



Henry Cavill is so pretty. How can you stop staring at him? Seriously?

Okay, before I take myself to see Man of Steel for a second time, let's look at my June goals:

1) Complete at least four chapters of the WHITE SPIRIT revision.

Never reached this goal. I've only done two. To be fair, it took me forever to get those two chapters right. Hopefully, the following chapters won't be that difficult.

2) Work on it every day.

It's been sporadic, what with all the MoS and Henry Cavill fangirling. At least I'm honest.

3) Start researching trolls for my YA, MAYBERRY WITH MONSTERS (working title).

Still haven't started this yet. I may have to move it back to September.

So, there you have it, my June. I did sign up for July, though. I think that one will go much better. And if you want to sign up and play along, the post is here. All you have to do is sign up with some writing goals and check in every week. People then leave comments to cheer you on. You know you want to.

Okay, if you'll excuse me, I have a date with Superman...again.
ravenela: (Uhura klingon)
Ah, another week is here, and it's time to check on the #Writemotivation goals. I would've posted these yesterday, but I was geeking out over Man of Steel. Come geek out with me.

All right, let's see how the editing is going.

1) Complete at least four chapters of the WHITE SPIRIT revision.

I've been switching and changing scenes in both chapters two and three for the past week. I have to say, I think it has a smoother flow now. *Nods* I have two weeks left in this month, right? I can knock out two more chapters. *Puffs out chest*

2) Work on it every day.

I can actually say I've worked on this story every week day. I keep missing weekends, though. It's tough when you share an office with your husband, and he likes to watch Youtube videos during the weekend.

3) Start researching trolls for my YA, MAYBERRY WITH MONSTERS (working title).

Haven't even begun yet. I really need to see if the library has any books I can put on hold.

Overall, I'm satisfied with this month. I still want to finish WHITE SPIRIT by the end of July. It'll take some pushing, but I think I'm up to the task.
ravenela: (Write - created by mercurybard)
Ah, yes, song lyrics. My favorite subject lines. :) That's what I get for listening to Florence and the Machine in the car.

Anyway, I love it when a story comes together, and right now, WHITE SPIRIT seems to be doing that. The flow is so much better. The dialogue is snappier. Tristan is hotter (if that's possible).

Let's review my #Writemotivation goals since it is the end of the month.

1) Start working on the third draft of WHITE SPIRIT.

Ah ha! I'm up to chapter two on the edits, and I feel fine.

2) Write or edit every day I don’t have to work.

I still miss a day here and there, but for the most part, I'm keeping up with this one.

3) Have the first third done.

Did not happen this month, and that's okay. Like I said, I'm up to chapter two in the revision, but I'm hoping I can finish off chapter three before the end of the week. Maybe. Since tomorrow is the end of the month and the week.

In other news, I've been keeping up with So You Think You Can Dance through less than legal means. I would have no problem watching legally, Fox, if you had a way in which I could do that.

I'm loving the auditions and have seen a few people I can cheer for. Yay! What do you think so far?

I also saw an ad for The Listener. I'm probably the only person who remembers this show, but I watched the first season when it aired in the US. Loved it with all of my heart. And then NBC took it away from me. But apparently, it's still on in Canada. I have to find a way to see those episodes. I have to.

Yes, I still have a Star Trek post to make. I promise to make it next week. Until then, on with the story.
ravenela: (Tardis)
I spent all weekend wanting to get back here and work on my story. Now that I'm here, I don't want to do anything. Instead, I've been watching clips of the Eighth Doctor on Youtube. Ooh...I forgot how much of a cutie Paul McGann was. Purrr...

Anyway...story. I need to focus on my story. It's not going to fix itself.

How was your long weekend? What's your morning distraction?
ravenela: (McKenna/Tristan - original story)
Thank you, Gotye, for getting that song stuck in my head. It's from The Great Gatsby soundtrack. Still haven't seen the movie yet, but I love the music.

Okay, onto the #WriteMotivation goals.

1) Start working on the third draft of WHITE SPIRIT.

I started it! I did, I did. I nailed down Tristan's back story, and I started working on chapter one. I'm going slow so I can think about each word I use. I need to make it better, smoother.

2) Write or edit every day I don’t have to work.

Now that I've settled into my new schedule, I can make this happen.

3) Have the first third done.

Since I've just started, we'll have to see.

******

Okay, later on this week, I have another Summer Reading post plus some thoughts on Star Trek Into Darkness and ST: Enterprise. But for now, I think I should share my earworm. I'm warning you, it's catchy.

ravenela: (Rosalee/Monroe)
It is week two of #writemotivation, and already I've fallen off the wagon. To be fair, I'm transitioning from a temp job to a permanent job. (Both are part time, don't get excited.) But there have been several days where I've been lazy.

Let's review:

1) Start working on the third draft of WHITE SPIRIT.

I've had a breakthrough with Tristan's back story, now to hash out the details so I can make this a better book.

2) Write or edit every day I don’t have to work.

Can I cite reading Nora Roberts' latest book as an excuse for not doing this one?

3) Have the first third done.

Still hasn't happened. I'm working on it, though.

******

Meanwhile, let's talk Grimm.

Dear Grimm,

Meet me behind the cut tag... )

Okay, you can return to entertaining me now.

Love,
Me
ravenela: (Write - created by mercurybard)
It's Tuesday, and it's time to see how my #writemotivation goals are going. I haven't made much progress yet, but I have started.

1) Start working on the third draft of WHITE SPIRIT.

Before I can actually begin, I have to delve deeper into Tristan's backstory. It's the reason he moved from Wilmington to Asheville, and right now, it's not very good or motivational. In the last two drafts, I did a lot of handwaving. I kept hoping it would reveal itself. But apparently, backstories don't appear out of thin air. They don't do it with me in any case.

I have a vague idea, but I need to flesh it out. Then I can sprinkle details throughout the story. So, I'll be hashing it out today.

2) Write or edit every day I don’t have to work.

I started doing this last week. I did miss one day, but I'm back on track this week. When my work schedule changes on the 20th, I should have more time.

3) Have the first third done.

Hasn't happened yet. :)

Okay, back to the drawing board...
ravenela: (McKenna/Tristan - original story)
Here it is...my official declaration post!

For the whole month of May, I'll be participating in #WriteMotivation. It's a Twitter/Blog thing where writers encourage each other to complete their goals. I'm feeling motivated already.

Anyway, my goals for this month are:

1) Start working on the third draft of WHITE SPIRIT.
2) Write or edit every day I don’t have to work.
3) Have the first third done.

Cheer me on either here or on Twitter (I'm @amyrav). I'm kind of excited by all of this.
ravenela: (Rosalee library)
Good morning! It's a gray day here, but I hope you've got some sunshine wherever you happen to be.

First things first, it's Reading Wednesday, and I've got books to talk about.

Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal was excellent. It's a Jane Austen-style romance with a twist - everyone can create glamours using magic. The best part about this story is that the magic was subtle and the characters were the main focus. This is not an action-adventure story. It's a sweet modest romance that's a cross between Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility. I know several of you out there would love it.

Right now, I'm reading Nora Roberts's latest book, Whiskey Beach. With romance and suspense, I'm a happy camper. I'm loving it so far.

****

I've compiled all the notes on my manuscript, WHITE SPIRIT. One beta reader said my main character was an ass. Another said the romance is forced. All three disagreed on the beginning. Looks like I've got my work cut out for me.

****

I leave you today with two library humor links.

Librarian Problems has a funny take on the day-to-day tasks of a librarian.

Awful Library Books focuses on those really old and outdated that should have been removed from library collections years ago. Some of these you have to see to believe.

Have a good day!
ravenela: (McKenna/Tristan - original story)
The beta readers have all reported back to me, and I'm almost done with my own notes. And then the real work begins.

I think I'm going to open a new, blank document and copy the story word for word. This will give me a chance to really look at the structure of each sentence and each scene.

My betas' comments gave me a lot to think about, but none of the changes are out of my reach. It's going to take some rethinking and reworking; however, WHITE SPIRIT will be a better book for it.

Also, I've been keeping up with my TV watching.

Now that I have a new schedule at work, I can watch Arrow in real time. But I was a little confused after last night's episode so I might need to catch up on some that I missed.

I also have a lot to say about ST:Voyager and my new-found love for Seven of Nine, but that's for a later post. Stay tuned!
ravenela: (Rosalee library)
As I clear the dust from my blog, I realize it has been a while. What all have I missed?

TV-Wise: Been watching all my shows.

Once - I so called spoilers ).

Vampire Diaries - Spoilers )

I need to catch up on Arrow.

The Voice is coming back, which makes me a very, very happy girl. Love The Voice. I think it's my favorite talent show of them all.

I still love Smash, but I don't think anybody else does.

Oh, and Doctor Who starts back up at the end of the month.

What TV things are making you happy?

Writing-Wise: Quick, look over there! *Runs away* Okay, so I've been making notes on WHITE SPIRIT. All of my beta readers have sent their comments so I need to incorporate all of their notes in with mine. And then the real work begins. So much revising, but I'm going to make this story work.

Job-Wise: Haven't found a full-time permanent position yet, but I've put in some promising applications.

How is it going in your neck of the woods?
ravenela: (McKenna/Tristan - original story)
Current Chapters Read: 10
Notes Taken: A lot

I'm still in the "jotting down notes while I read" stage of the revision process. According to my beta readers, this story isn't as bad as I feared. However, I've noticed my emerging problem. I'm short on detail.

I'm one of these people who doesn't like a lot of description when she reads. I've been known to skip over long paragraphs of description. Let's get to the action. My brain will fill in the rest. So, I skimp on the details when I write.

Novels need details, though. I need to show what my characters are thinking, feeling, or doing, not simply tell it with one line and move on. It's time to slow down and add the description. Otherwise, no one is going to know what's going on.

Onward to chapter eleven!
ravenela: (McKenna/Tristan - original story)
My beta readers sent back notes on WHITE SPIRIT this week, and I think I stopped breathing. I knew the second draft wasn't perfect. I agree with all of their notes. But it's different when you actually see it all written out.

Now that I took a few days to digest the notes, I'm ready to dive in. Many of them look like easy grammatical edits - cleaning up the language and stuff like that. Others look like they will be much more involved.

When I draft a story, I don't add many details. I want to get it out onto the page. Now I have to take a step back and really describe how things feel, what they look like, what they sound like.

At first look, this whole revision process seems to be overwhelming. However, I need to remember to take one scene at a time. If I do that, I can make this story the best it can be.

I'm going to start be reading the story again and incorporating the notes. Also add a few of my own. And then I plan to retype the whole thing. It'll be cleaner and look more like a manuscript that way.

Got any revision tips I should keep in mind?

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