The 7 types of writers

1. The Planner

The Planner outlines and details every chapter, every scene, every line before getting down to writing. Flash cards and Excel sheets are usually involved. It’s pretty hardcore.

 

2. The Pantser

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Panster, as in write by the seat of your pants. I.e. the opposite of the Plotter. Plan? What plan? They make it up as they go along. And somehow, it works for them.

 

3. The After-Hours Writer

Also known as the one responsible for the feverish mutterings in the middle of the night.

 

4. The Researcher

You know that half of what you’ve researched won’t go into the book, but man does it take the pressure off writing the actual thing!

Also, everything counts as research. Including watching videos like this documentary on McBusted:

 

5. The Uninspired

Self-explanatory.

 

6. The Inspired

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Well. Good for you. Exit that way, please.

 

7. The Desperate

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Desperate are those who have spent weeks and months tearing apart everything they write because nothing seems to be good enough.

 

8. The Emotional

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They react to everything they write … or don’t write.

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Guess which one I am now?

 

But I found this quote on Laini Taylor’s blog that is somewhat encouraging:

“One reason people have artist’s block is that they do not respect the law of dormancy in nature. Trees don’t produce fruit all year long constantly. They have a point when they go dormant.

And when you are in a dormant period creatively, if you can arrange your life to do the technical tasks that don’t take creativity, you are essentially preparing for the spring when it will all blossom again.”

~ Marshall Vandruff

 

Leave it to Laini to offer a dose of optimism. I swear, that woman inhales sunshine for breakfast. (Although with that fabulous pink hair, can she be anything but happy?)

 

Hope you’re having a more creative day than me!

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PRETTY is a lovely word (as is LOVELY)

Ex-literary agent and author Nathan Bransford dishes out some hard truths:

The thing people should really be worried about is whether they have the willpower to write a novel. That is the hard part. The setting aside of time, powering through when it stops being fun, and getting the whole thing written and edited.

I think I’ve said before that writing can be lonely at times. It’s just you and your words. You slaving over your story. You and your own thoughts that can easily morph into doubts. You don’t know if what you’re writing is any good, if anyone will ever get to read it, much less love it. And because of that, you’re hesitant about showing anyone your work. And then it becomes REALLY just you and your story. After a while (usually around the middle), your story starts to get tiresome, and you’re not sure if you should just give up on the whole endeavour.

But then you remember how immensely gratifying it had been to complete your previous stories. And you decide to push through.

Aww thanks, Ryan!

So that’s where I am now, trying to keep up my flagging enthusiasm for Neverland, keep my eye on the finishing line, so to speak.

Thank goodness for little reprieves such as these:

This has to be one of the most hilarious interviews of McFly I’ve seen. Alan Carr + the boys = a total riot!

This one NEVER gets old. Some people say this is a terribly display of how spoiled First World kids are, but I think they were crying about the injustice of losing what they’d earned (how much trick-or-treating do you have to do to get two bags of candy?)  more than they were crying about the candy itself (though, of course, they were crying about the candy too).

And this! Another classic: Dominic Monahan prank-interviews Elijah Wood.

I died laughing.

And to those who say Orlando Bloom is just a pretty face who can’t take the piss out of himself, check out this video:

Still love him. Once my Legolas/Will Turner, always my Legolas/Will Turner!

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Oops. Those eyes though!

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Sigh. Is it any wonder why the writing’s going slowly?

Anyway, remember Graffiti Moon, that wildly beautiful contemporary YA book by Cath Crowley that I raved about a while back? I only just discovered her blog (how did I only find it now?!) and OMG it might be one of my favourite blogs now, along with Laini TaylorNathan Bransford and Maggie Stiefvater’s. I mean, just look at these random gems Cath posts!

Some prose (click on the link for the full piece!):

Someone will offer you the last page of your life today. You won’t know it’s the last page. They won’t say and you won’t ask.

They’ll be waiting for you on a corner that you walk past every day. You’ll think maybe you recognise them. It’s something about the way they’re clicking the thumb and index finger of their left hand together when they speak – you do that all the time, you’ll think.

So you’ll take the page, they know you’ll take the page because you’re that kind of person. You say sorry when it’s not really a sorry kind of situation. You say sorry at least five hundred times a day. You counted once. It’s a habit. You don’t even know where you picked it up.

You’ll get a strange kind of feeling when you walk down the street. The sky, an uncut blue overhead and the mist coming out of your mouth like a ghost. At one stage you might get the idea that you can suck the cold air right back inside. You can’t, you’ll realise. Air that’s breathed is breathed for good.

The paper will stay in your pocket all day – maybe along with a couple of chocolate wrappers and a piece of gum you didn’t know what to do with because you couldn’t find a bin.

You’ll probably touch it a couple of times during the day – feel the corner when you talk to the one you want but spend most of the time looking at the air just to the left of their ears. Maybe you’ll touch it when your boss says you messed up and you believe him.

In the end you’ll take it out and read it on the train. You’ll be coming home like everyone else, watching the blur of lights out the window, the glass between you and the night, between you and the breath of stars.

Some poetry:

You is my mad aching ship

My sad puzzled light

My honey ocean

My late night, impossible wish

I’m sure the grammatical choice (“is”) is there for a reason, but I don’t want to delve into literary criticism here.

And some more prose:

You’ll look up today. You’ll notice the sky. It might be streaky or blue or brushed with white buckled clouds but there will be a piece of it that seems exactly right. You might take a photograph so that you can remember.

You’ll think about the words that you love – maybe nova and opal and shadow and nest. Maybe flicker and frost, kismet or linger. Maybe bliss. Maybe kiss.

SO MUCH BEAUTY in her words. All that imagery! So tender and sweet it’s almost heart-breaking. I just want to hug those words…

Like this!

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MAD MAAAAAD LOVE! I wish I had her sensitivity for words. Graffiti Moon was gorrrrgeous. It’s just the kind of intense, bittersweet, funny, poignant contemporary YA romance centred around two characters looking for themselves and each other that I wish I had written. Or will someday be able to write with much much aplomb.

Speaking of pretty words, there’s something soothing about finding pretty art in the sinkhole that is Pinterest on a lovely blue-skied morning.

Wolf painting by chantelyoung on Etsy
a painting by Carson Ellis for Wildwood, a lovely MG book series by Colin Meloy
Obviously, Quentin Blake.
The Little Prince by Woo Hee Kwon

Okay okay okay. Enough procrastinating. I’m gone. Have a great week, everyone! :0)

a post of random things (it’s Friday – anything goes!)

This is going to be a whole post about random, unrelated stuff. But whatever. Nobody said everything in life has to be related.

1. Have you seen Zuhair Murad’s spring/summer 2014 collection?!?! IT. IS. INSANE. SO. GORGEOUS. CAN’T. FORM. COHERENT. SENTENCES. THOUGHTS. WHAT? PRETTY. I DIE.

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Get ready for the onslaught of pretty! (Pictures all found from Pinterest – I swear, that site is a Black Hole!)

Don’t these remind you of Elie Saab’s designs? Murad’s creations are pretty similar to Elie Saab (also a Lebanese designer), except that the latter’s designs are a tad more girly and feminine and dreamy, while Murad’s are a little bolder, more risque, and contain sexier elements.

Saab’s designs:

Elie Saab can do no wrong.

Soooooo dreamy and ethereal!!

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❤❤❤

I’ve been in love with Elie Saab’s designs ever since I first laid eyes on them, while Zuhair Murad’s designs are usually a hit or miss for me. Remember those crazy numbers Kristen Stewart wore to the Breaking Dawn premieres?

… Yeah. Not completely crazy about those. Good thing for her makeup in both instances, though.

But Murad’s SS14 collection is LOVE. LOOOOOVE!

2. So it seems apart from writing good stories, being a people person is also vital to a lucrative writing career:

If you’re in business, you’ve got to be a people person … Be genuine, be funny, be yourself. Reach out to your contacts and connections to build bridges. Go to writer’s workshops and befriend everyone there. Talk to everyone you meet in your town, and tell them what you do. Organic and sincere networking is the best way to develop a bridge to success. The friend you meet at the workshop could introduce you to his or her agent. However, don’t go into it thinking about what you’ll get out. Just focus on relationship building and the rest will flow naturally.

This does not bode well for a hermit like me. For the sake of my dream, however, I will do what needs to be done.

3. Here’s something funny that English majors can probably relate to. I know there a quite a few that ring true for me. Most ardently ;0)

Crush on fictional characters?

Check.

(Shiver remains my favourite book from Maggie Stiefvater. There is nothing quite like reading that beautiful, intense story for the first time.)

Geeking out on authors?

YesIWouldThinkSo.

Wow. I really seem thisclose to kissing the ground she walks on. So, check.

In love with my book collection?

Check.

(Speaking of books, I headed down to the bookstore two days ago and got my hands on Wonder Show by Hannah Barnaby. Yay for new book purchases!)

And one more thing:

Isn’t that the worst?

4. An update on Neverland: it’s slow going but it’s going. Can’t ask for more than that sometimes. I don’t know where it will take me for sure, or how it will meander towards the end, but I’m having fun on this journey so far.

At least Neverland isn’t as disappointing as Blood Promise.

My critique partner has just finished reading Blood Promise (a million thanks, Jenna!!), and although she was very very kind and constructive with her feedback, the bottom-line is that she didn’t love it like I hoped she would.

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I feel SO BAD, like I’d just wasted her time making her read a substandard story. I actually don’t hate Blood Promise. I actually thought it was better than it had been previously. But I get this way: I’d love my story if people gave me positive feedback, and absolutely hate it when they’re not crazy about it.

And once Jenna said it out, I saw the truth in her words. It did need more work. I probably did need some time away from it, until I heard the story that begged to be told. Because Jenna may just be one reader, but she’s also representative of my target audience. Listen to your readers, I say!

If anyone’s willing to invest some time in reading my manuscript, I’d be happy to hear your thoughts on it! In the meantime, I’m hiding out in Neverland.

5. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t bummed after reading Jenna’s email. While I deeply appreciate her forthrightness (why are people so afraid of hurting a writer’s feelings? Just tell me honestly what you think and I’ll be eternally grateful!), I am desperate for some perk-me-up right now.

So…

Awwww!
Paros, Greece
FABULOUS pink hair! LOVE, WISH, WANT.
Russian doll cookies! SO cute.

Can you tell I’m a sucker for guys with hair falling over their eyes?

And finally:

Love these boys (plus the drummer, Harry, who isn’t in here)! They’re one of the few groups that sound good live, write their own songs and have lasted for almost a decade (has it really been that long?!). Long live McFly!