#WriterConfessionals No. 1

Writer Confessionals

Trying out a new series where I share moments when I was a horrible writer to my characters. Feel free to join in the fun with your own #WriterConfessionals, and don’t forget to share your darkest deeds!

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Finding the right beginning


Some beginnings come easy; others, well, they bite, claw, and resist like no tomorrow, leaving behind frazzled writers. Take for instance my novel Heritage Lost: It’s beginning stuck from the very beginning, back when I conceptualized the novel in college. It’s sequel, which I’m am beginning, is already on its fourth (I think) beginning. None of them wanted to work; however, this one feels good. And funny enough, each “chapter one” has been moving forward chronological as I tried to nail down where the readers should be reintroduced into the world at. Continue reading

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Adama & Roslin — The ultimate couple


[If you have not watched the revisioned Battlestar Galactic yet, but would like to without spoilers, do not read any further.]

As promised in yesterday’s post about writing romance, here is my ultimate couple: Commander (later Admiral) William Adama and President Laura Roslin. They pretty much nail every single bullet point in what I like to see when it comes to romance, and I can hands down say they are my favorite couple–and there are tons of fantastic couples in fantasy and science fiction.

So why this couple as my ultimate couple? First and foremost, Adama and Roslin are strong characters in their own right, each with their own goals and position in the overall story. But really what makes them my ultimate couple is this: They are a mature couple whose relationship evolves over the course of four seasons–even after years, I still reflect fondly on this couple. (And yes, I usually have a few tears in my eyes while doing so.) Not only does it also have big moments, but it also has plenty of small ones, making their relationship nature and more real: They are a couple you root for and applaud. Continue reading

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Don’t forget the ordinary moments


I don’t have much of a romantic bone in my body. I will admit to being a bit more the hopeless romantic at one time, and it showed in my writing: the idea of eternal love, the “one.” In many ways, I shared many qualities with Anna from Frozen as she contemplates finding her “one” as her world opens. However, as Anna discovered, life is seldom so neat . . . though she probably still found her “one” before the movie wrapped up (It’s Disney. They love their pairing).

This realization, as a young adult, that in life we are, well, human–it soured me on romance by killing its idealism. I even reworked my fantasy novel to remove a wedding and throw in some romantic roadblocks. Even despite that, I still couldn’t completely kick romance to the curb and kept two really good couples in that book. And now as I get older, my views on romance have morphed to embrace the humanity involved in it, that it is our human flaws and shortcomings that create memorable, enjoyable romances. Continue reading

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So Begins The Jump

Keyboard and query letter start

The query letter is the writer’s rite of passage.

To borrow a phrase from Nick Fury (and countless other people over the years): “This isn’t my first rodeo.” I’ve queried before, often to no luck. Rejection happens more often than not: The publishing industry is a hard nut to crack. You just have to dust yourself off, get back up, and continue to submit, potentially with a new project. Doing just that was a tough decision for me. I put so much effort and time into Passage–its characters, its plot, its worldbuilding. However, as my SciFi novel grew and took shape, I had to acknowledge it had the best shot in the current market, so I put all my effort into bringing it to fruition.

Now Heritage Lost is wrapped up, and I’m putting together query letters and a synopsis while also toying with the idea of participating in #PitMad, which is Feb. 11. My ultimate goal is to begin querying agents throughout February, hopefully tantalizing one to bite. Continue reading

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How does a person get their $*** together?

Utter failure. That is really the only way to describe this year’s NaNoWriMo attempt. Illness struck quickly, taking a week, and then apathy swooped in and killed any desire to continue the trek onward. Really, does the world need my books? Are they really worth anything (not necessarily talking monetary value here)? I’ve been really delving into those questions a lot lately, among others.

One thing I can say about this epic car wreck of a failure is it did open my eyes: I have myself spread too thin and I’m not functioning in a productive manner. I need to break some bad habits and get back to being a functioning person, rather than responding to crisis after crisis and just generally being unhappy. Continue reading

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It’s the final countdown — NaNoWriMo prep


Join in the madness at http://www.NaNoWriMo.org. It’s crazy, but so worth it!


This is me right now. (Side note: I have my tablet working again!)

In the background of my head, Europe’s famous riffs loudly declare “It’s the final countdown!” And my countdown is now practically three days — three days and the madness of National Novel Writing Month descends upon me. I’m not ready for this! Frantically, I look at my outline: It only stretches from Chapter One to Chapter Fourteen — then there is only blankness. Also looming over my head is the incomplete final read-through, where I’m in Chapter Six of Eighteen. WHY IS THERE ALL OF THIS FINAL-NESS IN MY LIFE RIGHT NOW?! And where the heck did October go?! Ah, yes. Work invaded my personal time and held it hostage. But no matter, it is times like this that test one’s mettle — or some other platitude that people like to throw out. Continue reading

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Writer, this here be a mutiny


What are you doing? Well, that wasn’t planned, but that kind of–Now what are doing?! No, that isn’t in the plan! You weren’t supposed to do that until Chapter Eight. Stop that, this isn’t your scen–Why do you have swords? Why are you pointing them at me? What-what are you doing?! No, no–I need to have control of the helm … but you don’t know how the story is supposed to go …

It happens occasionally: You have your story carefully outlined and planned; your characters are fleshed out and ready to go; and then you wade into your story–only one character, or maybe of a group of them, hijacks the story. In a way, this is a good because it means your characters are fully developed to the point–like living, breathing people–they have thoughts, desires, dreams, fears, etc., all of which shape their actions. What could be better? Writers, after all, go to great lengths to achieve strong, well-rounded characters. But then, there is a revolt–the characters seize the helm: They can either steer the vessel, your book, into a vast ocean you hadn’t thought to explore or into a reef, where your novel either becomes stuck or sinks to Davy Jones’ Locker. Continue reading

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I’m not dead yet!

There's still some life in me, even after this summer!

There’s still some life in me, even after this summer!


Whew! It’s been a long time since my last post–about three months, actually. But don’t fear, there’s still life in me; it’s just that summer is always hectic at my place of employment. Luckily, it is wrapping up, and we are now down to two special insert tabs, so there aren’t a lot of extra assignments to worry about on top of my normal assignments. With this in mind, I feel positive that I will be able to resume posting regularly again.

For this return post, I figured I’d update everyone on my current projects and what else I’ve been up to before returning to the regular writing-themed posts. Continue reading

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The logistics of war


American soldiers during WWI.

This post is in honor of Memorial Day. Thank you to all who have served, including
those who paid the ultimate price.

Writing a novel containing a war is perhaps one of the most challenging things to do, particularly if you, due to your characters, are in the thick of the conflict, which is very different than writing about the home front. Most don’t really think about all that goes into moving an army from Point A to Point B … At least, you don’t think about it until you actually have to write about it.

Of all the conflicts that I have worked into a novel, wars have perhaps ran me the most ragged, and despite that, they continually appear in my pieces. I don’t really know why, they just grip me — perhaps it is just the history buff in me who read all-things pertaining to the Civil War and WWI. And each time I delve into the waters, I have characters who are in the thick of the action, forcing me to take the effort to make the conflict believable. And trust me, that is no simple task.

This post is intended to get you to think of the logistics needed to successfully write about a war. And really, this post is just the tip of the iceberg! Continue reading

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