Writer Resolutions

Hi all! Long time, no write. I hope if you’re reading this you’re doing well. And I hope if you’ve celebrated a holiday recently that it was good and not stressful!

So the last time I was on here I was talking about NaNoWriMo. That was about two months ago. You might have already guessed that a lot of stuff has happened since then.

A brief update on everything since I’ve last posted. I finished NaNoWriMo (shockingly). It was painful and pushed me way past my limits, but i finished it. Even a month after it’s done I feel the same sense of accomplishment as when I hit the submit button. 

In addition to NaNo, I’ve continued working on my two major WIPs. One is almost done, with maybe another 10k words to go on it. The other is just getting started but I’m in love with the world and the characters alike.

In non-writing news, these past couple of months have been stressful for me in my personal life. I’m trying not to get political but let’s just say I am not happy about recent events. I have very strong opinions on this matter and this has strained my relationships with some of my family members. But I know it’s been a lot worse for some people. The reason I bring this up is because I want to make sure everyone knows they can talk to me if they ever feel upset or threatened or uncomfortable by what’s happening in the world right now. You are not alone, I promise.

I won’t go off on a tangent (because this could turn into a several thousand word rant) but I needed to say that. 

Now then, let’s get down to the writing stuff. 

In the spirit of New Year’s Eve, I, like most everyone else, am making my resolutions. But when I started to do this I noticed a lot of what I was making goals for had to do with my writing. Hence, my Writer Resolutions. Here’s what I came up with.

1. Write 1k words a day. Even if it’s nonsense and terrible, just write something. Getting the words out is what matters the most.

2. Finish revising my first (and favorite so far) completed draft. It’s gone through quite a bit of editing so far but it needs a lot more work before it’s ready to start querying again.

3. Finish my Captain Swan fanfic. Yes, surprise, I write fanfiction. And I love Captain Swan. Don’t get me started on them or we’ll be here a very long time. But I’ve been plotting and outlining and tentatively planning this story for a while. It’s only a few chapters in so far and I’m excited to take it places, but I have to actually write it first.

4. Finish writing and revising my current pet project. I want to have it ready for fall contest submissions (like Pitch Wars)(I liked that one a lot). Or maybe even send it out to agents by the end of the year. I want to have it ready for anything, basically.

5. READ!!! I know this isn’t writing, but it’s related. Everyone I’ve ever seen talk about this has said that to be a good writer you need to be a good reader as well. And I am a very good reader. My goal is to read 50 books (school books don’t count) by the end of the year. Seems pretty doable to me considering I have triple that amount on my bookshelf.

6. Write some book reviews. The plan is just to put them up here. I don’t have a set number in mind. But I figure if I can reach Resolution #5 then I can get a couple of reviews posted on them. 

That’s all I’ve got as of now. I’m sure I’ll add some more as the night goes on. I’m an ambitious person. I have some personal goals as well, but the ones I wrote here are very important to me. Feel free to share your writing goals too! I’m curious to hear what you guys are trying to do for the new year.

That’s it for now. I’m going to go read a book (shocker! I know). See you guys in 2017!

Kailey

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Rejection & Random Thoughts

So rejection sucks. Shocker I know.

But here’s the thing: rejection doesn’t mean you’re not good. It means you’re not the right fit for whoever it is that rejected you. 

So far in the past month I’ve been rejected by four agents and all of the mentors I submitted to for Pitch Wars. And one thing they’ve all been sure to stress to me is that just because I’m getting rejected does not mean I am not a good writer. It just means that they are not the right fit for me. I need to keep going and find someone who is. And that’s something I wanted to share with all of you.

Now onto the random thoughts portion of this blog. In the past week I’ve moved into an apartment and started classes as a college junior. Because of this I haven’t had any time to write (boo). However one of my classes is a screenwriting class (um just a teeny bit different from novels right?) and my professor has mandated that we write for a half hour a day.

THIS IS SO IMPORTANT! Not only is it forcing me to write every day (which I should be doing anyway) but it’s forcing me to develop a routine. Writing schedules are super mega important!!! I don’t have one (even though I said I was going to for this year oops) and I know know know how much that kills so many of my ideas. 

GET ON A WRITING SCHEDULE PEOPLE!

Ok that’s all. My project list is currently three ideas deep and I’m on an internal deadline of October 9th for a first draft of one so I gotta get back to work.

Go soak in some good words or something else that sounds weird and smart. Or don’t, you know, whichever.

Kailey

Balancing Act

Hi there! So I’m heading back to school tomorrow (boo) and start classes on Wednesday (yikes). And since I am still waiting to hear about Pitch Wars (even though I have a pretty solid idea where I stand there) I’m not editing my MS. Instead, I’m working on two new projects that I am in love with.

It’s pretty weird working in an entirely different world than the one from my first book. One of my projects is set in two separate universes and another is set in our world like my first MS. Except this time it’s without the magic added in. 

I’ve been working pretty steadily on those two projects, switching off and trying to reach my desired word count for the week on each one. So far I’ve made a decent dent in both.

Now that I start school though things are about to change. This past month I’ve been able to sit down and spend as much time writing as possible since I worked from home. Now I’ll be balancing writing with classes and assignments. This is something I’ve done poorly in the first two years I’ve been in college and for this year I’m planning to do things differently. This year I have a plan of attack.

So in order to meet my internal deadlines and make wc goals each week I’ve decided to set aside a time to write every day. I’ve also put a set wc goal on my writing and I intend to meet that goal (if not exceed it) every day. Other people I know have done similar things and it’s worked very well. I’m an extremely chaotic person so I have no idea if working under a schedule will help me or not, but I thought it would be a place to start at least.

Anyway that’s the update on my life. I hope you guys are good. Go read a good book. Or if you want go write one!

Kailey 

#PitchWars

Hello all!

So last week I was messagingĀ Tobie Easton about her fabulous book Emerge (finished it recently and it was fantastic). I asked her for advice when you’re querying and she suggested I enter the #PitchWars contest. I told her thank you and that I’d probably enter it.

Well, at the time, I had no idea what that was.

Looking it up I was able to get a good understanding of what this contest is about. Basically, this is a contest where, if you have a full manuscript, you can submit it to four mentors. Those mentors will then choose from the pile of submissions who they want to be a mentor to. If your manuscript is chosen then you work with your mentor for about two months to edit and improve it. Once you’re done with that it goes up for the agent round. Agents sift through the queries and manuscripts and, if you’re lucky, might decide to offer you representation.

I think that made sense. I hope that made sense. Since I’m terrible at explaining these kinds of things I suggest you go check out this post from the creator of the contest Brenda Drake.

I know now that I’m entering the contest. Even if I don’t get chosen by a mentor it’s a great opportunity. Plus it’s FREE to enter (unless you want to donate and get to submit to two extra mentors!). A lot of stuff is not free and so I feel like taking advantage of free contests is really important. Especially when you’re a college student on a budget.

Maybe I’m the only person on the planet who didn’t know what #PitchWars was until last week. Maybe not. But I hope that if you’re reading this, you’ll at least look into the contest. It’s a great opportunity and I’d love for someone else to take advantage of it and maybe get the chance to work with a mentor. Submissions open on August 3rd so go check this out!

Alrighty well I’m off to work on my next project! LOOK AT THIS FABULOUS CONTEST!

Kailey

To Outline or Not to Outline . . .

That is the question.

Recently I was at a convention where I had the opportunity to talk to some amazing authors. I was even able to talk with Susan Dennard one-on-one for a while (she’s so sweet!). They were all very kind and had great advice.

One thing they talked about was outlining. The authors at the conference were pretty split on this issue. Some outline and some don’t. Personally, I didn’t outline my first novel. And now I’m in the middle of outlining my next one.

One thing I’ve learned about the process (from my own experience and from advice given by others) is that it IS helpful. I prefer to just write everything out and then go back and check on the details to make sure everything lines up and flows correctly. That’s what I like to do and that’s what worked on my first book.

Working on my second book, it was obvious there were too many details and small plot points to just write it all out. So now I’m working on the outline for book two and, as much as I absolutely loathe it, it’s going to help me in the long run I can tell.

Ultimately, I know it’s my choice whether I want to outline or not. And when you get down to it it’s about the same amount of time spent. Say I spend two days writing my outline. That’s about what it took me to go back through my first novel making sure I got everything correct. And the more detailed the book is, the more time I’ll spend going through to check it. Same with working on the outline.

Ultimately it’s your call if you want to outline a project. If you think you can do it without an outline go for it! It’s all about you being comfortable with your writing and molding your work into what you want it to be. If you think you can get there without an outline then more power to you!

I’m not sure if this was helpful or not. I’m not even sure it made much sense (I hope it did). If you found this helpful, great!

Just want to point out I will not be posting every day. At least, not once classes start back up. I don’t really think I’ll be posting on a regular basis. I only wanted to post this because I am currenly working on an outline and so the ideas are fresh in my mind. But I hope you don’t mind my weird as hell schedule once it starts up.

Okay that’s it! Back to outlining for me. Ugh šŸ˜¦ Bye!

Kailey

Hello!

Hi! Welcome to my blog. Basically I just wanted a space where I can talk about books and writing and things like that. Occasionally I might talk about music, or my life. I promise to try and keep those posts to a minimum. But in general I’m going to ramble on about whatever I’m reading or working on at the moment.

A little bit about me: I’m a college student, about to be a junior. I am a creative writing major with hopes of becoming a published author in the future. I finished my first novel at sixteen and it is never going to see the light of day if I can help it. I’ve since gotten much better at writing according to the (very) few people I’ve let read my novels. I read as much as I write which means one way or another I almost constantly have my nose in a book. Other than books my hobbies include listening to music every time I have to leave the house and bursting into song at random times. Most recently this was in the middle of the grocery store. I also draw, even though I’m not great at it.Ā I’m a huge hockey fan, have been for years. I’m also insanely competitive so if you like an opposing team this will be fun. Hope you like a good debate.

I’ll always post which book I’m reading on the Currently Reading sidebar. I may post book reviews from time to time, but I don’t have too much practice with that so be patient with me. I have no idea what kind of posting schedule this will be. I’ll probably just post whenever I feel like it, so I’m sorry about that in advance.

I think that’s it for now. If anyone actually read this, wow thank you. Now go pick up a book!

Kailey