Writing is Hard | WIP | October 2020 | Catching All Those Falling Stars

Previous post: Writing is Hard | WIP Writing Update | September 2020 | Hero Complex

I was fifteen when I started to write regularly. Every summer before school would start in September my mother would take my brother and me to Staples to get our supplies. That year I had an extra notebook that I didn’t need for school and that’s where something else began… I didn’t know it at the time but with that notebook, I would come to hand write short story upon short story… upon short story. It was a three subject spiral notebook, totally normal in every way even down to its ruddy red cover. But that notebook became my secret world.

Since I was still reeling off Final Fantasy VII, I got hooked on the just announced Final Fantasy Versus XIII (now known as FFXV for those who are curious; that is how long ago this was and how long that game was stuck in development hell, but I digress). All that fan fiction took up the first rush of pages, then I dropped back into the Pokemon fandom for a bit, and then Howl’s Moving Castle for a spell and then came Hetalia and Katekyo Hitman Reborn and then Durarara! and Bleach and Fruits Basket and oh so many others. Just typing all those series’ down brings back the rush of memories. Growing up with all those stories manifested from the brilliant minds of so many different creators got me through and helped me make a few close friends to survive high school with. Back then, if it wasn’t already obvious I spent a lot of time in my imagination. Maybe it was inevitable that I would eventually want to be an author. Even though for a long time growing up I didn’t want to become a writer. But that’s a story for a different time. At that time in my life all I needed was a place to vent my feelings and get lost in someplace that wasn’t the real world. Maybe that was why it was so easy to fill that notebook up with words.

It was two years later after starting that notebook that I created my first original character. Not a self insert or someone to fit in some other person’s world. He was mine, all mine. He has survived to this day and believe it or not plays a significant role in my current WIP The Lowell Saga. As you can see I love him dearly. He hasn’t even changed much from his original design. His core personality is still present, and even his name is the same. I would reveal more but he plays a sort of big, influential role and I don’t want to spoil anything for when this book finally sees the light of day.

I am honestly… really proud of myself this month? Again? Wow. I started to wake up a bit earlier before work to get some writing in, like I did last year around this time and so far it has been working. Just a half hour but it is still progress. Little by little. Something is better than nothing. Because one day all those little somethings add up, but you can’t add up nothing. Nothing just creates more nothing.

I find that (if you have been with me from the beginning you already know) I always struggle to finish a first draft. Beginnings are so easy for me. I can write a million beginnings. Middles are okay, I reach them half of the time. The end is something I have never seen. But I will. With this WIP I will. Positive affirmations and manifesting all the wayyyyyyyyy. Especially with it being that special time of year.

Yes NaNoWriMo time is almost upon us and I have decided to participate! Will I set a goal of 50,000 words? Probably not because that is not how I operate, something it took me years to learn. Will I try to write every day and see where it takes me? Probably more along those lines of thinking but I don’t want to lock myself in a box. As we all know, life happens… and we have to account for that. Will I keep hustling away at that first draft? Definitely, 100% yes yes yes. Maybe I’ll make that my goal. Just keep writing.

What I find working for me, which I didn’t do previously, is that I write the scenes that I want to write instead of going in chronological order. My draft may be a mess but it is still a draft and the words are coming and that is better than nothing. Something is always better than nothing. I’m also not getting hung up on making everything perfect the first go round (which is impossible anyway since nothing is perfect, something else I am learning and willing to entrench into my mind) and am leaving blank spaces or gaps where I need to fill in details that I just don’t have right now. I will eventually. But not right now. My Preptober is just building the habit that way I’ll have an easier time once November blows in. I mean I already spent a lot of time researching this year and outlining and planning. So now the implementation is in progress. Write, write, write.

Legit, do any writers know what they are doing? I don’t really, if I am being honest. I’m a very intuitive person and am going with my gut instinct here. Which, thankfully, has never failed me. I know there are a few writers out there that do have an idea (and please drop me a line cause I feel like I’m flailing in the sea out here) but as for the rest of us let’s make this November a memorable one. Let’s make it count. If you have a dream you have to try right? Or it will die with the falling stars…

And I won’t let any stars (or dreams) die on my watch. Not when they could became a beautiful reality.

I want to be a writer. I want to be a writer. I want to be a writer. I’ll say it over and over till I feel it’s true. But I do write. Therefore…

I am a writer. We are all writers, here.

But if I’m being honest some part of me still doesn’t believe it. Not till I finish a first draft at least. I have to do it. I want to do it. I’m going to do it.

We are all going to do it. I believe.

Till next time happy writing!

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word count: 8,541

To Wear the Mask, or To Not Wear the Mask? | A Discussion Post about Halloween and Our Costumes

‘Sup my pumpkins,

Happy October!! Only one of the greatest months of the year, only one of the most pleasant weather months in the year (at least where I live), andddddd the ONLY month in which we celebrate Halloween… you see where I’m going with this?

I’m back with another discussion post this month! This time I want to hear all about your costumes!! I want to hear from everyone. Those who have been planning their costumes months in advance, those who decide to dress up very last minute and even those who don’t like Halloween and definitely, will not, in no way dress up. I want to hear from you all and your reasonings behind why you don’t wear a costume (if you don’t) and why you do wear a costume (if you choose to!) and how you pick who you want to be. I’m honestly really curious about this and can’t wait to see your responses in this lovely autumn, candy induced coma, magic of a month’s discussion post!

Origins

The origins of Halloween reach all the way back to nearly 2,000 years ago when the Celts walked the earth, and celebrated the end of the year with their festival of Samhain as summer was coming to near death and winter coming to near breath. The Celts believed that the boundaries between the living and the dead were very blurred during this time and therefore they lit bonfires, burned crops, sacrificed livestock and wore costumes all for their gods. At least according to History.com. Winter marked the start of their new year and prophecies were told and fortunes read. The spirits that were said to walk on this night tended to cause trouble and mischief but their presence made it easier for the priests to predict the future of the coming year. The Celts wore costumes to revere the spirits and also to dispel or ward off the more undesirable ones.

To Costume, or To Not Costume?

So that leaves us today in the modern world. I know there are plenty of people out there who don’t celebrate Halloween. Maybe it’s too childish for some or maybe they just don’t like spooky stuff or maybe… for any other myriad of reasons. Everyone’s opinion is valid!!

Then that leaves the rest of us. Those who wake up, feel the disturbed magical air, and decide to put on the costume.

Now this is where I can get super philosophical and argue that there are those of us humans who put on the mask everyday no matter if it’s October 31st or not. Those who hide their true selves anyway. Those with uniforms of ties, lipstick and shiny polished shoes that don’t match who we are on the inside in the slightest. Does that make Halloween any different then any other day of the year then if you think about it that way?

(Everyone has their own personal demons or spirits to contend with.)

Everyone of us has worn a mask at some point in our lives. Everyone. Halloween though is the only day when it is outright encouraged.

Now this is where it gets interesting. I’m curious as to how everyone chooses their costumes. I know for me the last four years I have been Jessica Jones. No. Lie.

And I’ll tell you exactly why. Now I know Jessica is far from the true blue hero that is Captain America. (Trust me, I know and I love him too.) But Jessica is in no way true blue, she’s black. She doesn’t have an optimistic, can do attitude, in fact she is much more on the pessimistic side. Not to mention she is most assuredly, undoubtably, an alcoholic. Despite all this though, she is a character who impacted me deeply.

The core of the reason why I have chosen to be her for the past four years is because when I dress up for Halloween I pick someone who I resonate with. Despite all of her flaws, and she has plenty, Jessica is one of my heroes. Someone with qualities I wish were my own. (No, not the alcoholism or the pessimism or foul mouth or lack of self worth). Those flaws though are what make her relatable and make her human. Without them she probably wouldn’t’ have hit my soul as hard as she did, and make her other more favorable qualities shine. So what did sucker punch my soul about her? When I pick my costume I always make it personal.

Jessica had a rough upbringing. A traumatic childhood accident in losing her family at an early age, the rough experience and isolation of having super powers through her life, and, of course not to mention, all the strings attached to Killgrave and what he did to her. Despite that though Jessica, for the people she loved, found the will to have courage and face her fears. That to me is truly inspiring and is one of the greatest marvels of humanity that I will never get tired of. The power of love to make us rise above ourselves and have courage to face something near unfaceable. It gets me every time.

Also, growing up on the shorter and tinier side I’ve had my own fair share of experience of being overlooked. Then you have Jessica, a skinny smallish woman, who can fucking lift an entire 16 wheeler over her head. I mean, GOALS. Never underestimate us so called little girls. We are so much more powerful than the world will give us credit for, and when I saw Jess back in 2015 I really started believing it.

Not to mention, her tough personality. Jessica Jones sees your bullshit and looks right through it. I love that. Her personality has no hold for your mask, your lies. She is a private investigator and her job description is to legit find out all the dirty little secrets of who you are.

Jessica Jones is my hero. She is someone who has qualities I admire and hope to one day incorporate into my own personal being. The courage, the strength, the no time for your bullshit attitude. These are all characteristics I wish I had more of. So every year, I try to harness her energy for Halloween and I’ve come to find each year I get a little closer to being the person I want to be. That’s how I decide on my costume, at least.

What about you guys though? If you don’t dress up, tell me why. If you do dress up, tell me why. Do you pick your costume on someone who inspires you (like me)? Do pick a character arbitrarily? Do you pick a costume based on humor? Do you pick a costume for the scare factor? Do you pick someone or something that has no resemblance to you whatsoever?

I’m really so curious!! To each and every one of you, thank you for reading my ramblings haha! May Autumn’s reign be long this year and may you each have a very happy, or haunted, Halloween!

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Writing is Hard | WIP Writing Update | September 2020 | Hero Complex

Previous post: Writing is Hard | WIP Writing Update | August 2020 | Roxas

Okay who’s ready for the next tale in my adventure of writing?

Yes y’all, it is time for the Final Fantasy VII craze. So naturally, after I got absorbed in Kingdom Hearts, Final Fantasy had to follow. Naturally.

If you have ever played the video games you understand what I mean but just in case you haven’t I’ll put a little background in. Kingdom Hearts is essentially a delicious stew of nearly every popular Disney movie and Final Final Fantasy game thrown into one. So. Of course when it became one of my favorite things, naturally because Final Fantasy is a part of it, that also become one of my favorite things. Deductive reasoning at its finest there, folks.

I’ll spare you the tedious details and get straight to the point. I started with the original Final Fantasy because young!Jai thought that I would need to start at the beginning to understand (oh I was such a novice!) and after being so unenamored with it I THEN learned that each game had it’s own story. So naturally I jumped right to Final Fantasy VII. The most popular game in the whole franchise. And coincidently (and I say that ironically because I don’t believe in coincidences) a new spinoff game had just recently came out. For those of you that are familiar it was Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII. That dates me to being around 14-15. And that is when I met Zack Fair.

(I mean come on… look at this PUPPY)

You thought my Roxas obsession was bad, it couldn’t even compare to how I felt about Zack. Well, still feel. This man affected me so much that I think I might have developed a hero complex from him and still, to this day, I can’t play the ending of Crisis Core. I stopped right before the last chapter and I know I will never play through it. Ever. But, let’s move on to the brighter side of things.

(Aerith, my beautiful flower, nothing brighter than her)

From this new interest, I started to write drabbles. What is a drabble? Basically, it’s a short piece of writing under 1,000 words (though some are longer, and some super short) without any real plot but to draw a nice highlight on a character or emotion or something. Usually they are fan fiction but not always. I remember grabbing an unused notepad from the closet and making a pact with myself to write 47 drabbles. Why that number? Well, why not that number. To this day 47 is one of my lucky numbers.

Now these drabbles, before you ask, will never see the light of day.

(Sephiroth, protecting my garbage)

But they are part of the story so they get an honorable mention.

I had also, by this point, acquired a new laptop. It was a Gateway gaming computer and it was black and orange and, like, THE COOLEST THING EVER. (Especially whenever I wanted to play The Sims, and let’s be real that is why ALL of us buy computers). Anyway, I started my next fan fiction story. This one about a girl who sneaks into SHINRA (disguised as boy, totally Mulan-ing it) and becomes best friends with, of course, Zack Fair. It was called Hollowed. Of course my Gateway now no longer has a screen so there’s that, but I still have the hard drive. And on that hard drive, my story. As for a way to view said story that is still up in the air. BUT AT LEAST I HAVE THE STORY.

Sidenote, they just remade Final Fantasy VII for the PS4 and do you know what the name of the new theme song they released for the game was ??? Hollow. Guys, guys, I called it YEARS AGO. If that doesn’t mean me and this game have a special bond I don’t know what does.

Final Fantasy VII is one of the best and most influential video games of all time with one of the most touching storylines. If my WIP could even just reach one person I would die happy. Writing gives my life meaning. In The Lowell Saga, my current project, you could say that the characters are all searching for their meaning in life. Some of them have hero complexes, some definitely do not. But all of them in one way, shape, or form are trying to find their way in complex world just like the rest of us twenty-somethings. My original intention with this story all those years ago was to write a story about what happens in your twenties, when life is staring you right in the face and now you are an adult. And everything that comes along with that. Along with magic. Because when given the option to add magic, you ALWAYS add magic.

I got a lot of writing done this month compared to my check in last month in August, and no lie, I am super surprised I actually wrote as much as I did!! (Also, low key, super proud.) This month I focused a lot more on writing the first draft than the previous months where I was doing a lot of research. September was a long month and I had lots of feelings from living my real life that needed some outlet. So I poured some of them into this first draft. #HealthyCoping. At least when I write I can control what happens. 😉

Till next time,

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word count: 4,635

All the Autumn Vibes…. | A Discussion Post About the Ethereal Thing That is Fall

Happy Pumpkin Time Everyone!!!

I don’t really write discussion posts on my blog but they are something I always wanted to try so why not start now? The inspiration came like a lightning bolt and before I knew it I was already typing this post out. As you guys are well aware my outlook is all about seeing the magic that life offers in everyday occurrences which births a lot of my poems and vignettes. Magic can be wonderful! But alas, it can also be terrible. So what I wanted to talk about today was all my favorite (and some not so favorite) things about fall. That season that comes and goes so quickly, so quickly.

Apple and Pumpkin Picking

The feeling I get from picking my own apples is unreal. I imagine I’m out in the country on my own farm and harvesting all the best, sweet juicy apples that I can’t wait to eat when I get home. Of course this all happens in my head, lol, as I’m climbing the trees and subtly not noticing the signs saying “DO NOT CLIMB THE TREES”. Oops.

Picking out the best pumpkins is also one of the nicest feelings in the world. I always pick out two. A big one I can carve and a little one I can keep on my desk all through winter.

Photo by Natalie Grainger on Unsplash

School Starting Again

September used to be my least favorite month out of the entire year. Growing up, I hated school. HATED it. And I honestly never hate anything. But school. I was super shy and super insecure and never wanted summer to end. (This is probably a big reason why summer is my favorite season overall.) So when Autumn rolled around so did my anxiety.

Now that I have been out of school though for a few years and working, I find I enjoy September more and more as the years go by. I haven’t completely shaken the negative feelings but maybe as more and more time goes by…

Photo by Roman Mager on Unsplash

Scarves and Sweaters and Boots, oh my!

I’m all about the summer sun and shorts and flip flops. No lie. But the change over to scarves and sweaters and boots just… makes me feel so safe and comforted! Since the weather is picking up too, it also makes me feel really warm which is a very GREAT feeling for someone who is usually cold.

Photo by Melanie Kreutz on Unsplash

Winter’s Impending Arrival

I do appreciate the existence of every season. For there to be summer there has to be winter. I do not hate winter at all but I do tend to get a bit down during the darkest days of the year. Winter is not my least favorite season (spring is believe it or not) but the cold really does get to me. I can feel it in my bones and I never seem to get warm enough. But, I will admit there is no feeling quite like watching the first snowfall. As long as it’s just enough that I don’t have to shovel it in the morning, lol.

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Pie

This speaks for itself.

IT’S PIE SEASON Y’ALL. I am pro all kinds of pie. Please, yes, give it all to meeeeeeeeeee! My favorite though is blueberry crumb! The only downside to pie is that I wish I could EAT a whole one at once but alas then I would get severe indigestion, my dears, and that is no fun.

Halloween

There is nothing bad about this. All good vibes here. Halloween is just the epitome of MAGIC. The costumes, the candy, the tingle of something extraordinary in the air… Halloween is just indescribable and it makes me feel so alive whenever it rolls around. I just… I just love Halloween okay?

Photo by David Menidrey on Unsplash

I want to try to hold onto Autumn this year. It makes me feel a bit better about life in these weird times. We all need any little bit of happiness we can find. So I toast this post to Autumn. May your reign last long this year.

What are some of your favorite and not so favorite things about fall? Hopefully by talking about it we can all be more present in this ethereal season and make it last.

Till next time,

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Never Have I Ever Write Tag

Hello darlings, it’s time for another tag!

This one looks like a lot of fun! Thanks so much to my lovely friend Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner for tagging me and of course, special thanks to the original creator Bree Dawn @ The Long Voyage! Now without further ado…

The Rules:

  • Link and thank the blogger who tagged you.
  • Include the graphic somewhere in the post (or make your own!)
  • Answer the questions truthfully and honestly.
  • Tag 3 bloggers.

…started a novel that I did not finish.

Of course. 100 percent. Yes, to infinity. This is my whole identity as a writer that I’m feeling so attacked right now, lol! 😀 But my goal for this year is to try and change that! My WIP is coming along, slowly but surely.

…written a story completely by hand.

Yes! When I was younger all I would do was write by hand. I wrote a lot of short stories and drabbles and those I was ALWAYS able to finish. Because they were like only a few pages and then they were done.

…changed tenses midway through a story.

Yes I admit to doing this. I was writing a story in present tense once but it just wasn’t clicking so I changed it to past. Now I find I prefer to write in past tense.

…not researched anything before starting a story.

No, probably not lol. I always do at least a little bit of research because I am a perfectionist who gets hung up on the little things I don’t like having to go back and fix things. I like to keep pressing forward but the more I write the more I learn that writing IS editing. Editing IS writing. They are like conjoined twins and I’m training my brain now to accept this.

…changed my protagonist’s name halfway through a draft.

No, I don’t think I have actually done this. What I HAVE done is completely start over and rework the story from the beginning. You see, perfectionist problems.

…written a story in a month or less.

No, I have never finished an actual story. I believe that is the first step, lol.

…fallen asleep while writing.

Yes, I used to write really really late at night. It was kinda a way for me to wind down after school and whenever anything stressful happened. I was also really shy as a kid so I didn’t want anyone to see me writing self esteem issues so the only time I could write unencumbered was at night. So yes I did occasionally fall asleep.

…corrected someone’s grammar irl/online.

Yes, I do this to my family all the time. (Sorry, guys. I love you.)

…yelled in all caps at myself in the middle of a novel.

ALL THE TIME. I EVEN DO IT ON MY BLOG. ALL. THE. TIME.

…used “I’m writing” as an excuse.

Yes, and I’m proud of it. If I’m gonna make this dream work I gotta put the time in. (Sorry, friends. I love you and thank you for understanding.)

…killed a character who was based on someone I know in real life.

No, I don’t really base characters off specific people I know in real life. My characters are composites of a bunch of different people, places and things I’ve encountered in my life.

…used pop culture references in a story.

Yeah, I tend too! If it’s applicable.

…written between the hours of 1am and 6am.

Yes, yes pretty dark stuff. Pretty dark stuff. Mood Writing.

…drank an entire pot of coffee while writing.

I really only drink one cup of coffee a day, otherwise I get jittery. I LOVE TEA THOUGH.

…written down dreams to use in potential novels.

Yes, I have vivid dreams and some of them I’ve used in my writing.

…published an unedited story on the internet/Wattpad/blog.

No, I always edit. ALWAYS.

…procrastinated homework because I wanted to write.

Totally. I wrote some of my favorite poems during school hours when I should have been paying attention. (Sorry, but not sorry.)

…typed so long that my wrists hurt.

YES. When the Muse is really flowing I’ll go and go and go and go. To my detriment sometimes.

…spilled a drink on my laptop while writing.

I do this, like, every other day? (Sorry, laptop. I love you too.)

…forgotten to save my work/draft.

No. No. No. This is my writing equivalent to saving my file on every video game I own a million times.

…finished a novel.

Never. Working on it.

…laughed like an evil villain while writing a scene.

Yes, I have done this. Not going to lie I do this in real life in front of real people sometimes too.

…cried while writing a scene.

Yes, I have done this too. Honestly those are bittersweet moments. On one hand you feel really connected with what you are writing and you are just VIBING but on the other hand you are also crying messy tears all over the place.

…created maps of my fictional worlds.

Yes! I did this recently for my WIP, The Lowell Saga.

…researched something shady for a novel.

Haven’t we all?

Tags

I tag T.N. , S.J. and Sidharth! If you want, no pressure! Also anyone else who wants to participate consider yourself TAGGED.

Now back to the writing cave!

Till next time,

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Writing is Hard | WIP Writing Update | August 2020 | Roxas

Previous post: Writing is Hard | WIP Writing Update | July 2020 | (Guarding Space and Time)

Kingdom Hearts is one of the most beloved video game franchises of all time. Especially to me. Age ten was when this one first fell into my lap. I have always loved video games, and with that love comes a flood of memories. My brother and I opening up a Playstation 2 on Christmas morning together, my brother and I in the following years combining our money so we could buy a GameCube at Toys R Us when that first came out, my brother bringing my Pokemon Sapphire to my Dad’s work and losing my game (and my Skitty which I worked SO HARD to capture!) making me burst into angry tears… but I digress. Video games are something my brother and I have always shared and bonded over, through good times and bad. Kingdom Hearts is part of the good.

It all started when I was invited over to one of my school friends’ house for the first time. Kingdom Hearts was a thing I had known of before but (like Avatar: The Last Airbender when it first came out) I hadn’t originally pursued. My friend said it was good and that we should play, and long story short, I spent that whole play date engrossed in the Destiny Islands.

I remember that it was around the time Kingdom Hearts 2 was coming out. I bought my own copy of the original KH and played and played and played. I got to the Chernabog, legit, right near the final battle and the end of the game but succumbed and ended up starting Kingdom Hearts 2 immediately as soon as I could get my hands on it. That’s when I saw Roxas for the first time.

(ADORABLE *insert gushing & heart eyes here*)

Little to say I never ended up finishing Kingdom Hearts then. So, I’m left with the weird experience of saying I beat Kingdom Hearts 2 first. (Chain of Memories I tried to play too in that time frame but me and those battle controls weren’t jiving…)

I don’t know what it was but as soon as I saw Roxas I loved him. (That is probably as close to love at first sight that I’ll ever get in this lifetime.) The more I played as him and learned about him the more that affection grew and by the end of the prologue of Kingdom Hearts 2… I was devastated. If you’ve ever played the game you’ll know what I mean.

Why am I telling you all this and what does it have to do with my writing journey? Well, that passion of mine birthed into a story. My second attempt at fan fiction, only this time I typed it. Roxas ignited in me a story that I poured hours and hours into, writing way into the wee hours of the night on my old Dell laptop. Minor spoiler alert here but, I put so much effort into that story and would love to show you an awful excerpt but alas it came to a sad conclusion, just like Roxas.

My old Dell ended up crashing and I lost everything.

Including my story.

(moment of silence)

When I die, I pray God will bring that story back to me. Along with all the other little lost things that I’ve lost track of in my life. Like my Mew card, my Pokemon Sapphire game with my Skitty, and that Kingdom Hearts story. It was my first typed story, that along with my Pokemon picture books, and Sailor Moon fanfic notebook I never got to finish.

I guess that’s where I developed this habit of never finishing a story.

The habit I’m determined to break now with my current WIP, The Lowell Saga. I am happy to report that I have started writing! Snippets here and snippets there, but my word count is now on the rise… so progress guys!! I haven’t finished world building yet but I’ve decided to break that down to bits and pieces as I write. I think that’s better than me trying to do all the research in the beginning. That way my imagination can have some fun. Otherwise I know, as in the past, I may lose interest. The further I go with this WIP the more I’m learning about myself. I’ve been outlining a lot this month as well, and narrowing down the plot points I want to hit in this four book saga. It’s honestly…. very exciting.

And these feelings are why I love writing. I love being excited and feeling like yes, yes if this is all I do for the rest of my life I will die happy and fulfilled.

So far this WIP has been in the making for three years. It started as an idea, then research, some writing, afterward letting it simmer for a bit, and now picking it up again in 2020. More inspiration, more researching, and in the present I’m outlining and beginning to write. My process is like a slow burn romance. There’s the interest, and then the simmer as things calm as we get to know each other better, and then more and more kindling (like right where I’m at now) is starting to be thrown into the fire as I pick up on all these little details that I can’t wait to write about. I pray the burn continues this way. I’ll make it so.

That way one day this story will be a wildfire.

Till next time,

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word count: 1,230

Announcement! So… I Was in a Blackout…

Okay, okay it’s story time guys. So as we all love and know it is now August!!! The dog days of summer, the winning home run, the month where ice cream every day is okay, the cicadas are loud as ever, and we are all chasing that final horizon down the beach where every second is going to be amazing….. okay. So. While that is all normally true and wonderful … 2020 fell out of a Twilight Zone episode.

So on my birthday this past week a tropical storm hit the East Coast of the United States. It was so big and so damaging that many have even compared it to Hurricane Sandy that hit eight years ago in 2012 which at that time was the worst storm to hit the East Coast. The damage done this time was equitable and because of that many people, including myself, lost power. It took five days in the dark of not having internet connection, sweating without air conditioning and almost losing all our food but finally my power is back!! (Also, like, side note… the fact that the storm happened on MY BIRTHDAY is not a sign of bad luck but must REALLY mean I am a tropical storm of a person. That’s how I am spinning it anyhow…)

To those out there who still don’t have power know I’m praying for you. It’s humbling honestly to be without electricity and now I am even more grateful for everything I have.

That being said I missed posting my vignette this month and I am very behind on reading and commenting on a lot of posts. I’m going to do my best to catch up on everything but it might take some time.

In regard to my own blog I’m moving forward with my posting. The next vignette post will be the first Friday of next month, so I’m skipping this month and carrying on as if everything was normal (like, in these weird times that’s a healthy coping mechanism right? lol).

Also I’ve decided to cut the Alternate Reality – Flash Fiction post entirely. I feel like I’ve been stretching myself too thin lately and this is my least popular post. At least for right now. But I will still leave up the posts in case you ever feel like perusing them. In the meantime my poetry and vignettes will be staying strong! As well as any other announcements I may have, my WIP writing updates and my usual monthly Snapshot!

That’s all folks! Hope you are all staying safe and healthy! Sending good vibes your ways!

Till next time,

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The Awesome Blogger Award!

I’m sending much love your way Sophie for nominating me for this award!! If you don’t follow Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner, I urge you to do so RIGHT NOW. She is an amazing writer and a wonderful friend to me here in the blogging community!

Rules

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you
  • Tag this post with #AwesomeBloggerAward
  • Answer all the questions given to you
  • Nominate some people
  • Write 10 questions for them to answer

Sophie’s Questions for Me!

  1. What are your favorite books of 2020 so far?

I’m reading American Gods right now for the first time and I love it so much that I’m savoring it slowly. It’s like a fine wine and it needs to be taken in sips, lol. I also really loved my re-read of The Great Gatsby that was my first read of the year. Those are the two that jump to the front of my mind off the bat.

2. Where do you write your blog?

Well…. everywhere. I write at work if it’s a busy day but usually somewhere in the sanctity of my home. At my desk or in the living room or in the kitchen. When this pandemic is over though I’m definitely going to try swinging by a coffee shop or the library to mix it up a little!

3. Which type of blog post do you like reading the most?

I love reading poetry. Give me poetry any day and every day. It feeds my soul well.

4. Which type of blog post do you like writing the most?

Haha! Well, poetry because it’s short and sweet and/or packs a punch right to your heart.

5. What book format do you like the most? (e.g. physical book, eBook, audiobook?)

PHYSICAL BOOKS ALL THE WAY! My eyes are so sensitive and I already spend so much time at a computer so when I want to relax I need to feel the pages in my hands, breathe in that book scent and give my eyes a well deserved rest.

6. If you could travel to one place in the world, where would you travel to?

I want to go to London. I’ve always wanted to go there and right now it feels so far away and so out of reach. Literally and metaphorically.

7. Favorite dessert?

Ice creammmmmmm.

8. If you are stranded on an island, and you can choose to keep either your cellphone or a lifetime supply of books, which would you choose? ( Clarification: Your phone has internet and cell reception but you cannot use it to get yourself off the island.)

Lifetime supply of books. (But also I wish I could have the phone to to call my family and friends…. this one is hard….)

9. Which book do you remember most vividly?

Clockwork Angel because I have read that book WAY too many times, and it has given me dramatically skewed interpretations of men.

10. Would you rather eat good food or wear fashionable clothing?

Good food all the wayyyyyyy.

My Nominations

Since I’ve been doing a lot of nominations recently I’ll leave this up to anyone who reads this post and wants to participate!

My Questions

  1. If you could time travel what period would you travel to?
  2. What song would you not mind playing on repeat for the rest of your life?
  3. What is your favorite musical?
  4. Have you ever eaten a ghost pepper, and would you want to?
  5. Are there some things in life you want but KNOW for a fact you will never get them?
  6. Do you ever feel like life isn’t real sometimes and that we are all dreaming or trapped in a video game? #Meta
  7. Do you believe in love at first sight?
  8. Which Disney princess do you relate to the most?
  9. What is your favorite thing about summer?
  10. If you could meet any athlete who would you pick?

Thanks for reading everyone! What are your answers to the questions I was asked? Let me know! Now I’m heading outside to go enjoy the summer sun!

Till next time,

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Ideal Inspiration Blogger Award 2020

I’m so grateful and awed that Princess @The Mindful Modus nominated me for the Ideal Inspiration Blogger Award! She is such a sweet, kind person and I look forward to reading all of her posts. They are so creative and give me great ideas for how to live a better life and enjoy my time more! If you’re not following her already GO RIGHT NOW AND FOLLOW HER!

Rules

  1. Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to his/her blog.
  2. Answer their questions.
  3. Nominate up to 9 other bloggers and ask them 5 new questions.
  4. Notify the nominees through their blog by visiting and commenting on their blog.
  5. List the rules and display the “Ideal Inspiration Blogger Award” logo.
  6. Provide the link of the Award creator of ideal inspiration blogger award as Rising Star from https://idealinspiration.blog

Princess’ Questions for Me!

  1. Which of your blog posts is your favorite?

Great question! That’s like asking which post is my favorite child haha! All of them mean something to me but if I had to pick one right now off the top of my head I would say my poem “Sigh” because it’s just so true to how I feel right now.

2. What’s keeping you busy these days?

So much, too much. I’m going to work, then coming home and writing (or falling asleep at an early hour omg, ever since COVID my sleep schedule has been so wonky!). I’ve also been listening to a lot of music these days. I’ve always listened to music but right now I’m living like my ear buds are a part of my body.

3. What’s something that recently made you happy?

I just finished eating dinner and that made me REALLY happy.

4. What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?

The best compliment I have ever received believe it or not is this “You are doing enough.” I have a tendency to push myself to breaking so to hear that phrase is one of the most calming things for me.

5. If you could teach one subject in school what would it be?

English! Bring on Shakespeare, angsty teenagers and all the great literature I am going to push them into loving!

My Nominations

Since I’ve been doing a lot of nominations recently I’ll leave this up to anyone who reads this post and wants to participate!

My Questions

  1. What animal would you be in another life?
  2. What color do you detest the most?
  3. What is the most ridiculous thing you would do for money?
  4. Have you ever met someone you only knew for a short period of time but they changed you forever?
  5. Are there memories you want to forget?

Thanks for reading everyone! Stay safe out there!

Till next time,

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Writing Is Hard | WIP Writing Update | July 2020 | (Guarding Space and Time)

Previous Post: Writing is Hard | WIP Writing Update | June 2020 | (The Beginning … & the End)

I don’t know about you but for me age nine was a very impressionable age. My family life turned upside down right around that time. To compare it to writing, the universe had been foreshadowing and planting plot points for years right up to that pinnacle point in 2004 when my parents’ divorce was finally settled and done. So, of course, when life hands you something ugly we humans immediately want to gravitate towards things that make us happy. Which at that time for me was Pokemon, as I mentioned in the previous post, and then right after that…Sailor Moon.

I loved Sailor Moon.

I would storm home from school just to see if I could try and catch it on Cartoon Network. (I didn’t always find it, mind you, but when I did… let me just say… I was so happy.) I don’t think I comprehended that it was probably on at a specific time because I was a kid and I just wanted to watch it when I wanted to watch it. Everything about the show I loved. The girl power, the heroics, Tuxedo Mask lol… I must have gone through phases for each Sailor Scout. Jupiter initially, then Mercury later on… Venus here and there and Mars from time to time. Sailor Moon herself … believe it or not I did not like at first (I know, right?? How could I not love her??) but now she is such an integral part of my being I don’t know what my younger self was thinking.

I can recall really specific memories from that time period of my childhood. I remember watching the Negaverse attack on a dark snowy night sitting on the floor in the living room while my Great Aunt (now passed) was in the background speaking to my mom. I remember running across the street to my neighbor’s house when her grandchildren were visiting and going to watch Sailor Neptune and Uranus after we played catch in the backyard with Max, my neighbor’s border collie. I remember going to our local video rental store regularly and always renting the Promise of the Rose movie whenever I had a chance…. that all seems like a lifetime ago.

Nowadays, I love each and every one of the Sailor Scouts having read the manga and seen the 90’s anime adaptation too many times to count. Sailor Pluto holds a special place in my heart today. Maybe because of all of the scouts she seems the loneliest to me and I just want to help her and be her friend. If you think about it… she had the loneliest job of all guarding the Space-Time Door…. and isn’t writing also one of the loneliest jobs sometimes too? Like all of us writers at some point are looking to the past or the future, gaging the current state of society, picking up cues from everything all around us and compressing all that and everything into the written word to guide and protect others… like we are all guarding that very same door….

Sorry lost myself there for a second, lol.

My next step into writing was of course to write Sailor Moon fan fiction turning my childhood obsessions into stories at the ripe age of twelve. I was so hardcore I wrote it all by hand in this pink notebook I found lying around. I remember watching the shows on YouTube over and over. Back in those days there was a limit to how long the video could be so one episode of Sailor Moon was broken down into about three or four YouTube videos. After, I made outlines about how I wanted to change the story, and did character analysis’ for each of the scouts and all the new original characters I wanted to add in. I named it Love Bright, Sunlight… and yes I am internally cringing right now.


Needless to say I never finished this story either. True to my track record. On the other hand though, this was another stepping stone to eventually realizing what I wanted to do with my life- become a published author.

Since my last update, life has been hectic. I’ve been working a lot and then coming home and trying to work as hard at my WIP but falling short on doing everything I want to do. I’m still in the pre-writing stage working on world building. Can I just say too- trying to make your own religion is HARD WORK, WOW. I knew it would be hard but due to my overcritical nature this part is taking a long time. It’s all part of the process though (at least that is what I keep telling myself). (You had to want to write a fantasy, didn’t you Jai???) I know, I know. One day all this will pay off. I also spent some time on the main characters this month which was a lot of fun! The Lowell Saga has a lot of characters and character arcs to navigate but I can tell you I can tie it down to seven main characters. Which sounds like a lot, especially when they will all get their own POV sometime down the road in the four books I am planning to stretch out this story into. If I want to narrow it down even further then I guess I can tie it down to at the core three specific characters as the main trio, at least for the first book. Anyway… back to researching interesting marriage ceremonies and racking my brain for weird funeral ideas.

Thanks for hearing me out for my writing update this month! Writing these posts is definitely helping me stay on track and keep working, so I hope if you read this far you got some enjoyment out of this post too.

Till next time,

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