Snapshot 6/30/21 // “(insert big smile here)”

Currently listening: “Driver’s License” – Olivia Rodrigo
Currently watching: Gravity Falls
Currently playing: The World Ends With You: Final Remix
Currently reading: The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

June went by really fast. Really fast. But I think that’s because I actually had a lot of fun this month. I saw my friends A LOT, I hung out with my family A LOT, and I ate A LOT of good food. Not to mention, like, it’s SUMMER. The greatest thing to ever exist.

June Goals:

  1. Focus on the present. CHECK.
  2. Watch my sugar intake. FAILURE. Turns out I like sugar, and s’mores, and donuts and blueberry muffins. Like damn.
  3. Work on The Lowell Saga. CHECK, CHECK, CHECK.

July (the month where I just exist in bliss) Goals:

  1. Watch my sugar intake. Take 4?
  2. Work on The Lowell Saga. I FINISHED MY FIRST DRAFT OF BOOK 1. Now, to edit!

What I Read:

  • Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley. This book helped me immensely this month. I read it in one gulp. Faster probably than I’ve read any other book this year. I bought it awhile ago and had always been meaning to read it. The timing just never seemed right. After I lost my dog on June 1st, I knew now was the time. This book hit every beat. Every. Beat. It was the perfect remedy to how I had been feeling. The way grief was handled throughout the book, the subtle love story, the books, the ocean… it was what I needed. Five stars. Shout out to Marie @ Drizzle and Hurricane Books for sharing her love of Words in Deep Blue on her blog. I wouldn’t have found it without you!
  • This Time Will Be Different by Misa Sugiura. I enjoyed reading this one! Anything involving a flower shop immediately calls to me. At times I did find CJ the main character a bit difficult to like but she grows throughout and the book, and comes into herself in the end. The lessons learned, and the histories explored through the text also gave me great perspective. The story focuses on moving forward from the past and previous mistakes of our ancestors to building a better and more equal future and taking accountability. We all have the power to do that, inside of us, and that inspires a lot of hope.

What I’ll Be Writing:

  • Poetry- posted every Wednesday
  • Writing Is Hard | WIP Writing Update- posted in the middle of the month
  • Snapshot! Monthly Recap- posted the last day of every month
  • Announcements- posted as needed

If you want more information about any of the above, you can check out the About page on my site or just click here.

Marvelous Posts I Read in May:

My Round Up of May Posts:

It’s been a slow reading month but it’s all good. I FINISHED MY FIRST DRAFT, AND IT’S SUMMER, AND LIFE IS FUN AGAIN!!!

Till next time,

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

Writing is Hard | WIP Update | June 2021 | It Is Done.

Previous post: Writing is Hard | WIP Update | May 2021 | It’s Part of the Journey

Okay, um… so! I am just going to cut straight to the chase. I have some news.

I FINISHED MY FIRST DRAFT. I DID IT GUYS. I ACTUALLY DID IT. I REACHED MY GOAL. THE FIRST DRAFT OF (BOOK 1) OF THE LOWELL SAGA IS FINISHEDDDDDD!!!!!!! (But more on this later!)

It feels so weird to me to have actually finished a draft, because in my whole entire life I have never written a whole book before. I always stopped or had gotten bored with the story way before I reached the end. If my high school self could see me now!

As I mentioned in my last writing update, when I was in high school I didn’t want to be a writer. I loved writing and because I loved it so much I never thought it could actually be my job. School was my job back then and I hated school. Wrongly, I believed, that work had to be difficult and something that you really didn’t want to do. (How naive and misguided!) Thankfully, the universe had other plans.

One of the first signs that put me on the path of being a writer came in my sophomore year during English class. We were studying poetry and our teacher assigned us, simply, to just write a poem. I remember I didn’t think much of it. In fact I was in the mode that I just wanted to get it done so in the class following (Driver’s Ed) I finished the assignment. Just like that, between studying the driving manual and scribbling in my notebook, I wrote my poem.

A week later after we had handed them in and our teacher had graded them, she said something that I still think about today. It was a small thing. But isn’t it those small things that make us wonder what if ? My high school English teacher was notoriously hard to please. She was a difficult grader and held us, her Honors English class, to a high standard. What she said was small, and maybe not that significant, but it meant something to me, and apparently still does because here I am writing about it. I don’t remember the exact phrasing but she said something like this, “Some of you should consider having your work published in our newspaper.”

When my poem was finally handed back to me there in bright red pen was just simply the word “Wow!”

And that’s when it hit me she might have been talking about me.

At that point I hadn’t really considered publishing my work before. I was too shy and too nervous. I didn’t want anyone to see my work. I was afraid. I dismissed the idea of having my poem published immediately after the thought had been born. The me back then in no way would do something like that.

The me who exists right now though is completely different. I still wonder what would have happened if I had submitted my poem to the paper. But then I know it’s an impossible thought. Everything happens for a reason and that moment in time served as a marker to set me on the right path. It was a crucial stepping stone, one that seems so small but actually since I’m writing about it now, means a lot.

Especially now. Especially with this particular writing update post.

(And that poem, believe it or not, was eventually published. Just a few years after the fact 😉 Here’s the link if you want to check it out!)

Honestly, I am still in awe. I finished a draft. I finished a draft. I finished a draft!!! Is it perfect? No way in hot hell. But it is done. It is done. IT IS DONE.

I still have a lot of revision to do. That’s a given. But, from everything I’ve read and from all the authors I’ve listened to, I know getting the first draft done is huge. No matter how terrible it is. Because at least now I have something to build up from. You can’t build up from nothing. And I have something!

I plan on The Lowell Saga being four books. The first draft of book 1 is now complete. At the moment I am currently letting it sleep for a bit and letting my mind focus on other tasks. But then I am going to dive straight in and try to read the whole draft through in a day and see what all the major things I need to fix are.

After that revision begins. Then when I feel comfortable enough there I will be moving onto book 2. Then the same process will ensue through the last two books, until the whole story is finished and then I will make sure the whole series is cohesive and that all the foreshadowing is correctly plotted and all the little nuances make sense all throughout. Then the story really will be done.

It’s a wonderfully scary thought. A very far away thought but one I know I’ll reach.

My writing friends I have a question for you. What do you do once you finish a first draft? Do you have any advice for me? This is new ground.

Till next time,

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

word count: 79,327

“Awake”

I’d been there
a million
times before.

So familiar,
more nonfiction
than lore.

I stood
there
all alone.

Until a gentle touch
warmed my waist
to the bone.

A whisper
to my ear
of words with no recall.

You moved away
but always back
if I were to fall.

I’d been here
a million times
before.

But everything wasn’t
real to me
anymore.

Locked eyes
meeting
across the room.

Caused a
rush of thoughts
to bloom.

The only real
ones there
were us.

We were still
in all
the fuss.

You
were so
real.

Only
you were my dreams
to steal.

Photo by gbarkz on Unsplash

©2021 Jai Lynn

This post “Awake” appeared first on Jai Lynn.

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

“The Glue”

Thirteen years
went by in 1…..
2….
3.

An airport
on a dark
lonely night.

A plane
arriving late,
finally in sight.

A broken family,
tattered
but true.

You
and Jewel
the lasting glue.

The sidewalk
will never
be the same.

No one to make sure
the strangers
stay tame.

The top of the stairs
will always be for
the both of you.

I sit there now,
alone
imagining you two.

Death
is not
the end.

One day,
we will all be
reunited again.

(My dog Ike recently passed away. He is the one on the left. Jewel, his sister, passed in 2015. Though I can’t see them, I feel the both of them are still around. This poem is dedicated to them.)

©2021 Jai Lynn

This post “The Glue” appeared first on Jai Lynn.

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

“Addict”

I know
it’s bad for me.

Recommended one dose
and I’ll take three.

Better choices
but the Devil is what I see.

Drinking the poison
like it’s tea.

Desperation for something
making me fall to the knee.

You say I have a choice
but shackles aren’t free.

I know
it’s bad for me.

But the bad choice
is all I’ll ever be.

Photo by GRAS GRÜN on Unsplash

©2021 Jai Lynn

This post “Addict” appeared first on Jai Lynn.

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

Snapshot 5/31/21 // “Me in May”

Currently listening:Soul Mate” – flora cash
Currently watching: Steven Universe
Currently playing: The World Ends With You: Final Remix
Currently reading: The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

May was an interesting month. It was the best of months, it was the worst of months. It was the month where I made a lot of stark changes. For one thing I got my yearly haircut, yes you read that right yearly. So the length is now at my shoulders and ready for the heat. BRING IT ON SUMMER. I also got a blond streak in my hair which I love and is something totally new. Yes, yes, yes, yes and oh one other thing. Did I mention I got a tattoo?

I wanted a tattoo since forever and was supposed to get one last year. So this month I decided to just DO IT. So I did. I know some of you know what this is haha, and all I can say is I’m in love!

May Goals:

  1. Focus on me. Yes, I think I did this.
  2. Watch my sugar intake. No, I think I did not do this.
  3. Watch my caloric intake. 😦
  4. Get at least 10,000 steps everyday. 🙂
  5. Do yoga every damn day. 🙂
  6. Work on The Lowell Saga. 🙂
  7. Watch your spending. :/ I may have indulged a little, but not a lot. It was on books, okay?
  8. GET THAT TATTOO. DONE!!!!
I did half so…

June (the month where summer is here and I am ALIVE) Goals:

  1. Focus on the present. It’s summer and I want to have fun. Enough said.
  2. Watch my sugar intake. Take 3.
  3. Work on The Lowell Saga. Keeping the dream ALIVE.

What I Read:

  • The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill. This book went above and beyond my expectations. I knew it would be good, I knew it would be adorable but then I read it and it was just SO good and SO adorable that I can’t wait to get my hands on the next in the series. The graphics are wonderful and warm and just give you this good feeling inside as you read. I felt calm every time I picked it up and can’t say how much if you need a book to get you relaxed JUST READ THIS. Diversity, wholesomeness, dragons, and tea honestly what more do I need to say?
  • The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. This book. This book. This book. I’ve read it over and over and no matter how many times it always feels like the first time. I fall in love over and over and over again. This book is complex, simple, reality, dreams, and magic all tied into one. And it all feels so real. I love it so much. I read this book years ago at the right time in my life and it has stayed with me since and will stay with me forever more. The Raven Cycle will always be in the top of the top of my favorite books and it is a series I believe that played a hand in who I am today and who I will probably become tomorrow. And I know a lot of you feel the same way if you’ve read it.
  • Fruits Basket v.11 by Natsuki Takaya
  • Kuroko’s Basketball Omnibus #3 (v.5+6) by Tadatoshi Fujimaki
  • The Midnight Library by Matt Haig. Five stars all across. A beautiful perspective on living, dying and all the paths we don’t take. Definitely deserves a read, and that’s all I can say.

What I’ll Be Writing:

  • Poetry- posted every Wednesday
  • Writing Is Hard | WIP Writing Update- posted in the middle of the month
  • Snapshot! Monthly Recap- posted the last day of every month
  • Announcements- posted as needed

If you want more information about any of the above, you can check out the About page on my site or just click here.

Marvelous Posts I Read in May:

My Round Up of May Posts:

Summer. Summer! SUMMER!!! It is my favorite season and I can’t wait to go back to the ocean and eat ice cream and since we are all vaccinated now visit my family and hang with my friends and THRIVE ❤

Finally.

What are your plans for summer?

Till next time,

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

Writing is Hard | WIP Update | May 2021 | It’s Part of the Journey

Previous post: Writing is Hard | WIP Update | April 2021 | Vienna

Doesn’t May make you sad sometimes? I don’t know… this could just be me rambling but May means summer is almost here, but not yet. And that’s the thing. Summer isn’t here yet so I’m sad. But also, the year moved by so fast and that means that summer (once it comes) will end again too. I don’t know about you but I love summer and I’ve been waiting for what feels like forever for it to come back.

What my beautiful metaphor of an opening paragraph is alluding to is that with writing too I’ve been sad this month, and I’m a little worried about like… everything. My emotions have been up and down, riding all the waves of May. Self doubt is a killer. Everyone has those moments of what am I doing with my life? I had a few this month, and I’ve come to the realization that at the end of it, even if I don’t “make it” or whatever at least I tried my best. At least I listened to my heart. I’ve been writing when I can and planning when I can’t. But I keep going and that’s the point.

Probably because I’m stubborn as shit. And I feel this weird incessant calling to have to write. So. There we go.

In high school, I loved to write for fun. I would scribble poems in the margins of my notebook and I would write fanfiction on the back of handouts. I think in the back of my mind I was subconsciously aware that one day I would end up as a writer, but freshman/sophmore year of high school it was just a very distant dream. I would even go as far to say that the me at that time would say she didn’t want to be a writer. Maybe even at all. You see at that time in my life I wanted to do something with my life. Like, be a firefighter and rescue innocents from burning buildings or be a physical therapist and help injured athletes rehabilitate. I (wrongly) didn’t view writing and becoming a published author as doing something with my life at that time which is so vastly different to who I am now.

So I resisted.

Part of the reason I believe I felt this way was because I thought that if writing became my profession than that would suck all the fun out of my favorite thing. Writing when I was young was escapism, it kept me calm, it made the world seem like a beautiful dream of possibility. But the reality of my life was school, and if I haven’t already said it enough before I loathed school. LOATHED. Literally.

School was my job and my job wasn’t fun. I never wanted that to happen with writing. That was part of the reason and the other was my idealistic sense of purpose that I wanted to be a hero. I mean who doesn’t, at least at some point in their life?

But honestly, maybe I was just afraid.

If I am being honest, I still am.

The Lowell Saga (TLS), as you all know, is the working name for my current WIP. The more I work on it the more I see all its faults. 😦 But I also see all its potential. 😀 If I can figure it out, then I know I can make this a great story that will hopefully one day be published. Gosh that’s my dream guys. I’m trying here.

This month I got more writing in. Not a lot, but something so I can keep moving in the right direction. May was all ups and downs for me but June will be much more steady. Calm shores and not rocky waves. No one can predict the future but this is what I am trying to manifest lol.

This month I think I’ll talk a little bit about one of the main premises of TLS which is what essentially the entire plot revolves around. The treasure hunt. Their is no one great category to put my weird WIP in but if I had to I’d sayTLS is some weird mix of fantasy, magical realism, young adult/coming of age/new adult, adventure, mystery, noir, anime inspired beast of a story vibes. (That is such a weird combination, Jai, like WTF?) Yes I know that is what you are all probably thinking haha, BUT by the time I actually finish with the story though who knows what it will be? The beauty of drafting is that things can change at any time.

But not the treasure hunt aspect. No that is a main part of the story and always has been. There are seven lost artifacts that my main characters, essentially the main trio, will be revolving around for the entirety of the books. And I can tell you they encounter at least three of them in the first book. 😉

How are your stories going? I would love to hear so we can vibe together!

Till next time,

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest

word count: 75,752

“Day Dreaming”

Golden light
on bare skin.

Mint chocolate chip
painted across nails.

Laughter and yells
in the bright sea salt air.

The ocean
awaiting the incumbent return.

How can I
put it to words
when it means
so much more?

Every other season
is a dream.
For it is
only
in the summer
I am awake.

And the irony is…
summer
is the only season
where life actually
is
a beautiful dream.

Photo by Scott Trento on Unsplash

©2021 Jai Lynn

This post “Day Dreaming” appeared first on Jai Lynn.

Twitter | Instagram|Pinterest