Tuesday, November 23, 2010


I won all five books in that picture! :D This is 'The Penguin Five', a promotional thingie Penguin did with five ARCs. The books included are:

  • Eternal Ones by Kristen Miller (Romance) (August)
  • The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff (Horror) (September)

Nightshade by Andrea Cremer (Paranormal) (October)

Matched by Ally Condel (Dystopia) (November 30th!)

Sapphique by Catherine Fisher (Fantasy) (December 12th!)

As you can see, I got this way late. However, if it hadn't been for a drawing I won, I wouldn't have read 4 out of 5 of these books. I wanted to read Nightshade and am very happy to have a unique coppy. Hopefully I'll enjoy it and be able to get passed any typos. Although Eternal Ones, The Replacement, and Nightshade have already come out in finalized coppies, I think it is cool to own unedited ones. Plus, I can always compare at the bookstore if I feel I'm honestly missing something. However, I've heard many people want to get their hands on Matched, so I'll be reading that this week and posting my review before the 30th! How exciting! The same goes for Sapphique, but before I can read it, I'll need to get the first one in the series.

NaNo update:

Novel(s): Golden and Watching You Burn
Days: 23
Total Word Count: 6,232
Cups of Coffee: 0 (Lots of Coke and Dr. Pepper, though.)
All-Nighters: 0 (Several failed attempts)
Panic Attacks: Too many to count)
Things Researched: School fights, acrobatic falls, hand grenades

See ya soon!


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Why Do I Want To Do Everything But Write?

Hey guys! I really have little excuse for not blogging as my word count for NaNo is sickeningly low. Golden is turning out so well for some reason. I open the document every day and . . . nothing. I hate it. Usually, I don't hate my rough drafts for a while, so this is strange.

I learned the hardest part about being a writer is just . . . writing. Does that make any sense

Novel(s): Golden and Watching You Burn
Days: 21
Total Word Count: 5,559
Cups of Coffee: 0 (Lots of Coke and Dr. Pepper, though.)
All-Nighters: 0
Panic Attacks: Too many to count)
Things Researched: Sociopaths, circus trains, the One Child Policy, circus animals, Chinese outdoor markets, etc.

So far, I've started reading a new book (Nick Lake's Blood Ninja), started two new AMVs (Animated Music Video) for Avatar: The Last Airbender, and watched another episode of Fruits Basket.

See ya! *goes back to tearing hair out over novels)


Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Word Cloud!

Authors Scott Westerfeld (Uglies series) and his wife, Justine (How to Ditch Your Fairy) teamed up last year to post NaNoWriMo tips daily during November. Aside from Justine's wonderful advice, I also learned she never uses white protagonists in any of her novels and she loves Avatar: The Last Airbender! Although I applaud her for both of these amazing things, I am here today to talk about one of Scott's posts.

Yes, Justine's husband posted something so cool, it got me to crawl back into the world of blogging. And way from homework, but that's another problem altogether. He talked about how readers snicker quietly when the same handful of words are overused. What can be done about this? you ask. Now that you mention it, I wonder what words I overuse.
He introduced us to this amazing thing called The Word Cloud:


It is a cool device that, once you feed it text, gives you a visual of frequently used words, the overused ones in bigger text. It automaticaly excludes words like 'a', 'and' and 'the' so no worries. Here's an example of the Word Cloud for my story Children of the Sun:

Wordle: Children of the Sun

The words will vary depending on your novel, but a handful of words will always be bigger than the others. There are words you can forget about or that you want to be big. For me, the biggest words appear to be character names: Zuko (Prince), Areida, and Uncle. As you can see, 'Prince' is slightly bigger than 'Zuko', but this is because Zuko often uses or is refered to by his title ('the Prince', 'Prince Zuko', 'I am Prince of this Nation').

Even if they aren't character names, don't freak out just because you see a lot of big font on the page. That is a good thing at times. Though it varies depending on the content of your story, there are words you want to show up often. In my case, the words 'Avatar' and 'Fire' are used often. 'Firebender' shows up as well, but in smaller font, as it is often replaced with things like 'able to bend fire', 'Firebend', or 'bend/bender'. Nation is also fine, as it is a common word in this world, though one I may want to cut down on for the rare instances it isn't needed.

However, amid those words are those I use far too often. So far, the story is only 12,553 words. 'Eyes', 'know', 'away', 'though', 'hand', 'thought', 'back', 'just', and 'one' should not take up so much space! Each bigger word should be examined, however, with care. Don't begin hacking your novel to pieces yet. (Since I don't have much time, however, I'll simply talk about the ones I feel others may overuse as well.)

Eyes- In this story, eye-color matters. Fans of the show are aware of how each Nation's natural benders have different eyes colors unique to them. Green for Earthbenders, blue for Waterbenders, gold for Firebenders, and grey for Airbenders. Non-benders can also have this eye-color. Sometimes, the word 'eyes' cannot be avoided. You need to close or open your eyes, examine the color of someone else's . . . Areida's eye-color is an important plot device and you certainly don't want to go around using words like 'orbs'! However, the word should still be used less. I could do some rewording to avoid it or replace it 'gaze' when I can get away with it. Something also tells me I may be using eyes to convey emotion: a big no-no for me.

Know/knew- These are tricky words. They show up often in everyday life, so you may be able to get away with using them . . . but just in case, you may want to watch out. Sadly, I'm unsure of many ways you could avoid it, at least without making everything too complex. Simple is better. Perhaps 'I didn't know his name' could be replaced with 'his name evaded me' or 'I couldn't remember his name. Carl? Joe? Carl/Joe paced the room' . . . blah, blah, blah. I avoided the words this time, but they'll come back to haunt me! In cases of interrogations, like with my story, it may be okay to use 'know' a few times . . . sparingly.

Hand- What on earth could you use to replace 'hand'? In cases of action or violence, this word might be okay, along with 'feet' or 'head'. If you still want to avoid it, you can possibly be more specific (Simple is better?) by using 'fist' or 'palm'. Hands usualy convey action, so this word isn't bad. 'Hands' is also much bigger than 'hand', oddly enough.

Just- I tend to use 'just' as an adjective. 'Not just yet.' 'She was just standing there.' I, among others, could cut back on this, find another way to convey and stress simple actions.

Some words such as 'like', 'face', and 'back' I don't see how I could use so much . . . At least now I know to cut back on them if I can, play with structure as inconspicuously as possible until I find one that works.

Other words I overuse to a ridiculous degree are 'something' and 'one'. I used 'one' in the above paragraph! 'Even' is yet another word I use to indicate stress ("I even used it in an example!"); I'll look for all this when I reread and edit my first draft. I'll keep it in mind while writing the next chapter.

The point is how helpful/awesome the Word Cloud is! Click the link I provided above the picture, post your novel (or a portion) into the field, and click Save to Gallery. Make a false title and name. They don't save any bit of the text you post, so no need to worry. Let me know in your next blog post how it went. Maybe even post the actual Word Cloud as I did. It's a great tool if you're looking to reduce word count or worried about overuse of noticeable vocabulary. Or just plain interesting. Let me know how it went, what you think your words mean, etc. Don't forget-- every novel is different! If you're writing a novel about monkeys in space, you better hope at least the term 'space' is in big letters! Remember what I said about names and words like 'Nation' and 'Fire'. If they're important to the novel, it is good to see them in big letters!

Hope this post was worth the read!

Let me know if you have any trouble with the picture/link.


Friday, October 8, 2010

Friday Fiction: Rated R!

Friday again? I haven't posted anything in, like, weeks. If it helps, I have had a lot to do. At this moment, I'm Beta-ing (editing) two FanFiction chapters. I have three more to Beta for someone else. I hate to say it, but all these 'assignments' are taking their toll tonight since I've doing that since I got home from school. Not that I am really complaining, for I enjoy this so much!
Anyway, I want to update more soon, maybe even do a few NaNoWriMo posts next month! For now, I'm working on polishing up the next chapter of my FanFiction, Children of the Sun, which has been delayed for two months because of merciless revisions. But, hey, won't I be doing this for a novel soon? This is just as important to me!
So, can you guess what you get this week? Yet another part of my one-shot FanFiction Between Daggers and Ice. This one is in Mai's point of view while imprisoned in the Boiling Rock. Let me know what you think in the comments below!

Rated R for . . . violence? That's just me being cautious; I'd give it a PG13 rating (or 'teen' rating).

My cell was cramped, chilly at night and sweltering when the sun came up. I rarely moved from the battered cot on the floor no matter where the other prisoners went. Not so much because I didn’t wish to go outside, to eat, to run, but because I simply couldn’t. Everything hurt too much.
As if on cue, another damn boy entered my cell. I was well past tensing up and fighting. I did not scream; I was prepared, ready with my own unique defense. Closing my eyes, I willed my body to relax. I figured I was not the only one to go through this, but I knew I was better off than most. The stranger overtook me, reeking of sweat and dried blood. A whimper threatened to escape, but I stifled it, my teeth clamping on my lower lip until I tasted blood.
Zuko . . .
Just like that, he was there above me, whispering my name. Pain melted away, replaced by a burning sense of pleasure. He was being more rough than usual, but I didn’t mind so much. It was the kind of thing to do when you were angry and horny at once, the kind of fuck to make a lover feel bad. I felt his teeth graze my shoulder and a thrill traveled down my spine. Once, before I assured him he did not need to remain a Prince, nor I Lady beneath him, Zuko would unwittingly irritate me, nuzzling when I wanted him to bite. Now we could be ourselves. More importantly, now I permitted myself to feel.
I believe I shouted his name, only to receive a sloppy kiss to shut me up.
Then, I remembered the last time I saw him, the images overwhelming me despite my protests. “You miscalculated. I love Zuko more than I fear you.” His bitch of a sister was going to kill me— and I was prepared to die if it meant saving him.
Hair, coarse and dirty, brushed my cheek, and my eyes flew open to see the stranger’s strikingly pale strands. Confusion took hold and this did not belong here, where all should be perfect. As reality surfaced, I struggled to hold onto my lovely delusions . . . before they shattered.
My eyes closed and I clamped down on my lower lip, praying to Agni for it to be over. This I could bear no longer. This man was no lover, no Zuko. My body ached, fighting him without my knowledge or consent. Pain crested unbearably and a scream ripped from my throat. This time, he slapped me so hard my face whipped to one side and color exploded behind my eyes.
When it was over, I’d lost at least an hour. I lay there, sobbing, murmuring Zuko’s name, not in ecstasy, but as a plea.
He would come to save me. He had to. I could only feel so much.
See ya!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Happy Birthday to . . . ME! :)

I bet I am the first blogger to post about her own birthday, but I'm elated and felt like sharing. lol! I'm going to start on the next chapter of my FanFiction (Children of the Sun) and maybe begin the outline for my NaNo novel since the contest starts on the 31st! :0 Then again . . . it is my birthday. I'll save the outline for tomorrow, I think.

Writers: Do you write on your birthday/holidays, too? :)

Off to have 17 year-old birthday fun, whatever that is. lol!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Friday Fiction Revived!

See? Revived! :D

lol! La Pieta, anyone?
The . . . the painting, guys, come on. No? Oh well. Anyway . . . revived!

I have an Avatar: The Last Airbender FanFiction for you all tonight, taken from one I wrote for a contest and then posted because it has too much adult content to be entered. Who knew? I now have the freedom to post the FanFiction anywhere I like! I figured I should let you focus more on writing style rather than original characters and plot-- see how it goes. I'd love some feedback.
This is a section taken from my one-shot titled Between Daggers and Ice, where a certain Firebender Prince ponders the two girls who love him (i.e Mai and Katara). It was mostly for the fans of both pairings and isn't really canon, so you don't need to watch the show to understand.

Below is a section told by Katara as she speaks with our favorite Airbender. Enjoy!

Waterbending took me away from my own thoughts, away from the Fire Nation Palace, away from my pestering companions who could not or would not understand my plight. The turtle-ducks chatted merrily, darting between the thin streams of water I pulled up with my fingers, curious at the five tiny fountains disturbing their usual calm. I smiled.
Startled, I spun toward the voice, water splashing back into the pond. “You jerk! You scared me,” I nearly shouted, but my smile returned and widened when I caught sight of the abashed expression on his sweet face. “Hi, Aang.”
“Listen,” he mumbled, using Airbending to lower himself gently onto the grass, sitting Lotus position. “I was thinking— you seemed sort of upset today.” Aang rubbed the back of his neck, eyes squinted the way they always did when he was upset. “I figured it might have something to do with Zuko dying— uh, sick back there.” He jerked his thumb toward the Palace— as if I needed calcification. “Sokka said that was a stupid idea, but . . . well, I don’t think so. I guess it’s ‘cause what makes you so special is how you care about everybody. That includes Zuko now, I think, otherwise you wouldn’t be so worried when the rest of us are fine.” Aang’s big eyes met mine, probing and fiercely protective. “The war is over— you shouldn’t have to worry any longer. No one should. Being the Avatar, I hoped most for that after peace was restored.”
I couldn’t stand to see him suffer, to sit and wait while he struggled to convey his own thoughts. A kid should be able to go about his own way without a care in the world, not having to worry about anyone else’s happiness or safety. Even the Avatar. “Aang, I—“
He raised one hand to shush me. “Let me finish. I don’t mean to force you into anything, I promise. But I care about you, Katara. You’re my friend and the best person I know. When you pulled me from that iceberg, your face was the first I saw— in that moment, I had hope that everything would be okay. “ He paused in thought, but continued decisively. “You told me I just might figure out this Avatar stuff after all. You helped me save the world, you saved Zuko . . . and now the Fire Nation has a ruler to help rebuild the other Nations instead of destroying them. Do you know what you are, Katara?”
I just stared, my eyes burning with unshed tears.
“You’re a— a healer. You make everyone feel better just by being there. Right now . . . there are two people who really need you.”
“Who are we talking about here?” I asked tersely, breathing in deep to steady myself. “I told you I was confused.”
“I know.” He looked away and then back again, jaw hardening. Then he stood and held out his hand. “Come with me. Maybe if you see him . . . it’ll help make up your mind.” Those eyes were too determined. Aang didn’t understand. It wasn’t just worry keeping me from contemplating a relationship with Aang.
I stared at my young friend for a moment and answered silently, That’s what I’m afraid of.
I took his hand.

Thursday, September 30, 2010


There's going to be a snippet this Friday, that I promise you!

I have to go finish homework. Ugh. Then it is back to writing. :)

Saturday, September 25, 2010


For two Fridays in a row I forgot about Friday Fiction. Crazy. I've been rather busy, though. I'm sorry guys! I promise to post something worthwhile soon, but I have to Beta (edit) two FanFiction stories tonight. This requires most of my attention. lol!

I have three posts I really want to do this week, so look for them!

Srill waters always run deep! (Hope you understand what that means by now!)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Meeting Reliant Plums

Yes, I know I have neglected my blogging duties, but with good purpose, I assure you.

I have been writing.

First, thanks to a helpful Indian author, I no longer fret over writing about the country in Golden. We’ve talked about my character Amit’s family life. This, among other things crucial to the story, has finally settled. I start writing in November.

This brings me to another topic: the potential novella I told you about a few posts back. It features a spin-off story of a novel I’m working on right now called Sleep. The main character will indeed be a girl named Mei. Strangely enough, since I just love torturing myself with the unknown, something tells me this story will be set somewhere in China or Japan. Since Golden is also set in China, I’m hoping she’ll end up being Chinese . . . but, knowing my characters, she’ll end up born Japanese and I’ll have yet another place to research. I’ll keep you posted.

In the mean time, BehindtheName.com has some interesting information:

Mei (1)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Chinese
Other Scripts: 美, 梅 (Chinese)
From Chinese 美 "beautiful" or 梅 "plum".

MEI (2)
Gender: Feminine
Usage: Japanese
Other Scripts: 芽依, 芽生, 芽衣 (Japanese)
From Japanese 芽 (me) "bud, sprout" combined with 依 (i) "reliant", 生 (i) "life" or 衣 (i) "clothing, garment".

“You keep mentioning Sleep”, you say. “What is it about?”
The only answer I can give right is, “You’ll find out Friday!”

I have written a short FanFiction for a contest. Sadly, that’s the only information you’ll have until November, when the results are given. Contest rules forbid me from giving any further information on the one-shot. Stupid rules. However, as far as progress on my current FanFiction Children of the Sun goes, it is coming along nicely. Chapter Seven is well on its way after about a month of being on hold. No more laziness . . . aside from homework.

In conclusion, I’m in Writer Heaven where my only problem is deciding what to work on next. :D

Still waters always run deep!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Brigid Interviews Me!

She interviewed herself a while back, and I was so intrigued, I asked if she could make a few questions for me! Here is the interview. Enjoy!

1. Q: When did you start writing? and/or What inspired you to start writing?
A: I was always writing little stories or making up stories in my head. However, I did not write my first project until I was eleven when I had a vivid dream about twin girls who were magical. Somehow, I just knew they were goddesses and that twins were rare among them. I wrote in a purple notebook the first chapter of my story, originally thinking they were half-goddess and half-witch. After speaking with my best friend Sarah at school and letting her read what I had, I found a writing partner. Together, over the course of a year, we filled three notebooks with utter crap and fun ideas. It culminated at about 500 pages. Considering how well The Percy Jackson series turned out, The Goddess Realm just may have done well, provided we acquired decent spelling and writing skills. Lol! In case you’re wondering, the story was about twin goddesses attending a camp to learn magic. With Sarah as the Earth goddess and Emily as the water goddess, they make, quite obviously, the Earth Twins. The rest of the story revolves around them learning about their parents— Artemis and Apollo— and their strife with the god of the Underworld. Enter Furies, magic, sub-plots, and Realms and we’ve got a badly written story! :D

2. Q: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
A: I’m not sure. Likely when we finished our first draft of TGR, or maybe when another writer called Persephone Hellcat from Yahoo Answers told me she was proud of how much my second draft improved in terms of writing. We added so much depth to the story at thirteen. That’s when, if ever, I first considered myself a born writer.

3. Q: How would you describe your writing style?
A: Honestly, it depends greatly on the character. Their voice is the driving force behind any story. When it comes to my novel Sleep, Sarah has described my writing as very cold, hard and refined like a diamond. Lewis, a main character, displays this trait most prominently. My other main character Liz, however, is more straightforward, more sarcastic in her wording. Yet my antagonist, Evangeline, is tentative and fragile, often repeating herself in the prose. Her schizophrenia plays a large part in her POV, though it is minimal in comparison to Liz and Lewis’s narration. With her, sentences frequently trail off, repeat, or break entirely. It is likely the most difficult point of view I have ever attempted. Yet another example is Jin from my NaNoWriMo novel Golden; her wording is simple, almost devoid of metaphor as I am trying to give it the immediacy of an eleven year-old’s oral account.

4. Q: How do you come up with titles?
A: Titles? Oh gosh, that’s though. I wish I had a ground-breaking answer to help novices everywhere. Instead, I can only say my titles usually come during or before the writing process. Sleep started out as a working title because I needed to give the first eight chapters to Sarah for her birthday. Yes, I wrote her a novel— I’m an awesome best friend! The title grew on me; now I could not imagine a better one! Golden is also a working title, which references to the main character’s hair. As for the uncompleted Her Fear of Heights, I was largely influenced by His Dark Materials and Her Fearful Symmetry. Sarah came up with the brilliant title for our first novel.

5. Q: What are your favorite books and/or authors?
A: I love Richelle Mead. She’s an amazing novelist and an interesting speaker. Her Vampire Academy series never ceases to amaze me, as does the fact I own several signed books. Succubus Blues was wonderful as well and I’m going to read more of her adult series fairly soon, including Dark Swan. I also love Julie Anne Peters; her novel Keeping You a Secret made me cry! I love Ellen Hopkins, especially Impulse, and Amelia Atwater-Rhodes intrigues me. I fell in love with the amazing Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson and have read her books since ninth grade. Some other favorites include: 13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher, Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause, The Series of Unfortunate Events by the ever-awe-inspiring Lemony Snicket, Harry Potter, The Host by Stephenie Meyer, Cirque Du Freak by Darren Shan, The Halfway to the Grave series by Jeanine Frost, Rachel Caine’s Weather Warden series, and The Second Short Life of Bree Tanner. I love Kristin Cashore and Vikas Swarup very much. Some Girls: My Life in a Harem was the first memoir I read, and extremely well written and interesting. I love the Manga The Last Airbender Prequel: Zuko’s Story as well. As you can see, I read a lot.

6. Q: What book are you reading now?
A: Two: Love Bites: A Vampire Kisses Novel and the Night World Book One by L.J. Smith. I hope to read The Hunger Games soon, as well as Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children. That’s a very thick book, though! :D

7. Q: Tell us about something (or everything) you're currently writing.
A: Sleep— a romance-thriller centered around the relationship between a human girl and a Manipulator boy whose affinity is putting her to sleep. Makes touching very difficult, if you can imagine.
Children of the Sun— a FanFiction set in the Avatar: The Last Airbender world. Prince Zuko rescues a Courtesan from burning to death. But will he come to regret this decision when Areida knows nothing about the Avatar? Or will they embrace a budding romance and have enough luck to escape both their pasts together?
Colder— a short story I may post sometimes centering around main character Mia as she explores her own dark thoughts, written for a contest promoting mental disorder awareness. I chose clinical depression and anxiety, as well as the more uncommon exploration of the accompanying mania and numbness.
Golden— an upcoming novel I felt was worth putting here. Set in fictional China and India, the fantasy creates a new spin on the One Child Policy as it follows an eleven-year-old circus performer named Jin.

8. Q: What do you think makes a good book?
A: Characters. A novel is literally nothing without them. So, this means no Mary Sues. A character must be always believable, sometimes relatable, and never flat.

9. Q: What do you want people to learn and/or experience from your writing?
A: If they could gain information or walk away with some sort of emotional attachment, be it love or hate. Should they take away something from what they read, I’ll be happy.

10. Q: What's the best part about writing? What's the worst part about writing?
A: Again, characters have so much to do with it. I love hearing what they have to say and watching them evolve throughout the story. It is such a reward! However, they can lie to me at times, or refuse to accept a certain outcome. They are rebellious and uncertain when it comes to my wishes. In the end, no one listens to me and my novels are better because of it. The hardest thing about writing, to expand on that, is probably . . . writing itself? No, really, my ipod and email distract me. Seriously, though, I think the most difficult thing about writing novels is ignoring my inner-editor, the forgetting absence of my muse, and getting over my fear of offending someone or getting an important fact dead wrong. The last one comes into play with Evangeline and the setting of Golden.

11. Q: What's your writing schedule like? How do you find time to write? When/Where do you like to write?
A: It depends on how busy I am, but I tend to write every day after school. For some reason, I get lazy during the summer, although I’ll sometimes makes up for it by writing all day long. I force myself to write all the time because the craft is about 50% sweat; I make time myself rather than find it. I have a laptop in my room. For some reason, I find I write best/most often at night. Especially during NaNoWriMo, I make deals with myself. “Once I’m done with this chapter, I can take a shower.” Lol!

12. Q: What do you like to do when you're not writing?
A: I read, of course, listen to music, perform in any play I can, hang out with my lovable, crazy friends, watch Disney movies like Mullan and Aladin, encourage my OCD by rearranging the books on my bookshelf . . . they somehow always manage to end up in the same places.

13. Q: What genres do you like to write?
A: My writing tends to be more fantasy and romance or a combination thereof.

14. Q: Would you like to have a career involving writing?
A: More than anything I hope to write novels as a profession.

15. Q: What are your characters like? Do you have any favorites?
A: I have too many and I love all of them . . . I love Liz, an independent, self-assured, selfish girl about sixteen. Amit is one of my human characters, an Indian boy about fourteen and Jin’s lovable best friend; he’s so energetic and cute. He’s the type of guy who can do anything. Evangeline is also wonderful to write with. She’s intelligent and supremely sweet, living a full immortal life despite her condition. Plus, her past is probably the most interesting out of most of the Sleep characters.

16. Q: What advice do you have for other aspiring authors?
A: This may seem simple, but all I have to say is, “Just write.” Do not put it off one more minute if you want to write. If you have any idea at all, use it. Don’t worry about what other people might think. Another piece of advice I have is to ignore your inner-editor. I’m one to talk, but you really need to focus on getting down your first draft and editing afterward. Don’t compare yourself to other writers— you are unique and have your own style. Don’t focus on publishing because the wagon goes AFTER the horse, not before it. The last bit of random advice I have is likely the most significant: Listen to your characters.
I hear many budding writers fretting over what to name their characters and how to make them believable and well-rounded. I say don’t worry about this. Your characters will tell you their names sooner or later— would you let a nurse name your baby? Likely not. Don’t tell someone tell name your characters or decide their traits. If you’re worried about Mary Sues, you cannot avoid learning your characters inside and out. Once you know them well enough, take the Mary Sue Litmus Test or just The Mary Sue Test. The results are not always accurate, but the points are really good to ponder if you’re worried about Mary Sue qualities.

17. Q: Have you had any particular experiences that have affected/inspired your writing?
A: Well, Colder stemmed from my own experiences, while Golden was inspired by Avatar: The Last Airbender. Nothing really affects my writing directly though, aside from inspiration. Also, I usually create play lists for my novels so I can listen to music as I write.

18. Q: What (if any) music inspires you? and/or Do any of your books/characters have theme songs?
A: Music changes for each book, both because of the differences and because I write them at different times when I have different music playing. Sleep has a ton of Linkin Park and My Chemical Romance, as well as Flyleaf, Red, Evanescence, Three Days Grace, Within Temptation, Paramore, and Eyes Set to Kill. For my FanFiction, Children of the Sun, I’m listening to a lot of Three Days Grace, Disturbed, and M.I.A. For Golden, I have a lot of Hindi songs on the play list as well as songs like Great DJ by the Ting Tings, Hoppipolla, Famous Last Words by My Chemical Romance, and Stand in the Rain by Superchick. Less heavy, for the most part, slightly less dark. Music is a huge part of the writing process for me.

19. Q: Anything else you want people to know about you?
A: I am random and silly, yet also thoughtful. Some tell me I am mature for my age, but I’ve no clue what ‘mature’ means right now. Books are the most important things in the world. My favorite foods are chocolate, pickles, popcorn, and pizza. As far as drinks go, I like Coke, Dr. Pepper, and Sprite. I am obsessed with YouTube and FanFiction. I love Dev Patel, Mae Whitman, Kristen Stewart, and Dante Basco for being so inspiring to me for both acting and writing. I used to think blogging was nerdy, but secretly wanted one. My ipod travels with me and I feel terrible without at least one book in my purse. :D

A big thanks to the readers and a bigger thanks to the amazing Brigid for having the grace to interview me!! Thank you!!


Thursday, August 26, 2010

Tell Me Why!

If you have not heard about the Ellen Hopkins censorship in Texas festival, please read Aprilynne Pike’s blog. Here’s the link: http://apparentlyaprilynne.blogspot.com/. What I am about to say is centraversial, I'm sure. Therefore, I ask you to trun away so as to not be offended by my thoughts. Thank you!

Anyone still here? Good!

When I read this, I became outraged at the sheer possibility of some parent picking up a novel, skimming its content, and organizing a protest to get the author out of a festival. It is one thing to censor your own children’s reading material, but to have the audacity to decide what is appropriate for everyone else’s? To be so terrible as to deem what is or is not appropriate for someone like me? Unacceptable in my book.

I’m sorry, but how can someone dare skim that which is meant to be read in its entirety, let alone form an opinion about it? This would be like simply looking me and deciding I am inappropriate because I wear black and silver bangles. Once I thought being mature was waiting to form an opinion about something until you could back it up with facts. Now I see I must be immature to go against an adult’s wishes, even only with my thoughts. If that is the case— I’ll not back down for the sake of maturity or having people think I am always levelheaded and sweet. I am a citizen of this nation and a stubborn female, so I will state my opinion; as calmly as possible, no doubt, but I’ll do it!

First off, I think parents that want to know what their kids are reading should read the book themselves, or even better, read it with their child and talk to them about the book. Parents don’t realize how important reading material is— and to take that away without giving it a chance . . . Just please, parents read the books your son or daughter reads and talk to them about it if you feel they are too young or immature to handle certain parts. You do have the right to censor what your own children read, but I pray you might find a valid reason for doing so. I respect any mom or dad who cares enough.

My second point might seem to counter the first: Parents do not have the right to tell other parents what to allow their children to read. Especially if they have never read the book in question. Let the parent of that child decide— not you.
Why do I care? This hit me hard not only as an Ellen Hopkins fan, but as a teenager. Luckily, my parents do not censor my reading (thanks guys!) so I cannot fully understand what it is like. I do, however, know what books have influenced me the most in life and writing— books which have been banned from schools everywhere:

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
Keeping You a Secret by Julie Anne Peters
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Impulse by Ellen Hopkins
Burned by Ellen Hopkins
13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher
Tricks by Ellen Hopkins

There are many more, but I wanted to point out another opinion of mine: People should, of course, not pressure or expose other people's kids to books or movies their parents may not approve of. You can always ask the child and parents how they feel about certain reading material, because, once again, parents do have the right to censor what their kids read.

Bear in mind that when I talk about censoring books, I mean the books that we written for that kid’s age group. Don’t let them read Richelle Mead’s Succubus Blues if they are not ready for an adult novel. (For the adults out there, it is great!)) It is the same with movies: you wouldn’t let a fourteen year-old watch an R rated movie if you did not think they could handle it. The difference is, you probably would have seen the movie first.

One final question concerning the administrators: How could they have picked Ellen Hopkins to speak at the event without reading the material first?

I’m sorry for the rant, guys! I’ll get back to that writing thing I do. 


P.S. Brigid has agreed to interview me!!! I received some awesome questions this afternoon, so I'll get to answering them right away. It should be up within the next few days.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Prompting, anyone?

My brain is fried. Cause: I'm trying to finish a Summer Reading book by a miss Zora Neale Hurston. Nothing is wrong with Their Eyes Were Watching God, but it is a bit slow to start and the dialect is Southern. 'Nuff said. I can say this because I am from the South and know how people spoke a long time ago. :) Therefore you can see how reading "Ah'm" instead of "I'm" begins to burn after a while. lol!

Because procrastination is my friend, I decided to write an unplanned blog post.

Why have I put up a picture of a milkshake, you ask? Well, because I like milkshakes, silly! No, it's because I wanted to let you know of a writing propmt I'm thinking about using sometime for an Airbender FanFiction.


Yummy, right? Although I don't think it'd be enough to have Princess Azula or Prince Zuko eating chocolate. :D Or me eating it as I write-- though that sounds like an added bonus. Tell me, how do writing prompts work exactly? Do I title scenes using words to describe chocolate? Put chocolate in the story itself? Or perhaps I could use the description of chocolate (i.e. smooth, dark, sweet, bitter) to prompt what I write?

Silly writer, can't figure out how prompts work! :)

I'm off to read!

P.S. Thanks to the people of Goodreads.com Writers Who Are Children group for pointing out that my blog could use more pictures.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

New Ideas, NaNoWriMo, and . . . Prince Zuko?

Hey guys, here’s another rambling blog post to slate your thirst:

I have many projects buzzing around in my head and, what with both old and new characters chatting, it’s a wonder I don’t have a headache. Sleep is being reread; my circus novel is being planned, using the screenplay as an outline; just yesterday, I wrote a crappy short story and accidentally entered it in a contest before I could edit. More on why I’m such a dummy soon. Anyway, few days ago, I was introduced to yet another new character, a main one if my assumptions are correct. Her name is Mei . . . or Mai. Either way, it is pronounced like the month of May, rather than “my”. Although I am unsure of the spelling of her name, I am fairly certain her story is going to be a novella set in the world of my novel Sleep.
Only you don’t know what that is yet, do you? Ha ha! Because of this, I have decided to prepare a snippet to post from my rough draft. There is a twist, mind you. I need people to actually read the post, which means people will need to follow the blog as well as comment. I’ll see how it goes through the rest of August, and if nothing changes, there will be no post.
In other news, NaNoWriMo is coming up in about two months. I’m debating on which story to write this year. Should I rewrite as much as I can of my novel Sleep, or start the circus novel? Wait— I am allowed to rewrite a novel, am I not? Let me know in the comments section below, please.
You may have noticed my picture change. There exists a reason behind that, mind you, as with many things I do. A brilliant TV show exists, one so amazing I can hardly put it into words, called Avatar: The Last Airbender. I should be posting more about it soon, as I am preparing for one at this moment. Until then, I can tell you where I think the inspiration for my newest baby Mei/Mai came from! You see, in this show lives one of the sexiest boys of all time: Prince Zuko. Unfortunately, for all the raving fangirls, he spends most of the third season kissing a girl named Mai— oh look, here’s a picture of them both!

Her name is also said the same way as May, not “my”. However, the letters “AI” make a sound like “I” instead of “A”. If I have not lost you, hopefully you’ll be able to pronounce her name correctly as well as spell it. Especially if I ever get around to letting this new character shine. : )

More coming soon!

Friday, August 13, 2010

A Musing on Bad Blogging and Jealousy

There are tons of things I think about blogging everyday:

A Musing on Fan Fiction
Mumbai: Why Is It Not “Mollywood”?
Am I Right On This?
Why, Yes, I Am Doing NaNoWriMo This Year!
A Musing on Setting and How It Hates Me
Present Tense: Is It Worth It?

Yet, somehow, I never get around to posting them. “Are you busy?” you ask. Not particularly, no.
Aside from when it comes to writing, I am lazy. In fact, that’s all I’ve been doing for the last two weeks. I wanted to blog about that today, but something else came up. Something I’m slightly embarrassed to admit.
I am jealous of other writers. Even if they aren’t published yet.
A fellow blogger, who shall remain nameless, has posted snippets of their writing. Not only do they have several completed projects, but they all seems to be . . . pretty good. Great, really. This writer is brilliant because they are able to create believable characters and setting, an enticing plotline, and most importantly, they are concise.
As a writer, my weakness appears to be overuse of internal dialog, as well as superfluous and almost theatrical wording. It is difficult to explain, but I had several people point of to me that I often use too many metaphors (i.e a person in my story may represent some longing, or the mention of a hairbrush may foreshadow danger from a certain person who provided it) and too much description. A reader told me the other day: My material is not as raw as it could be. I am sort of TELLING through internal dialog, rather than showing.
Even this rambling blog highlights my inability to be straightforward and concise, but I will not change it now, as I hope you’ll see what I mean.

At this point, I can see no example as to how being concise is not a good thing. My question to you is: Is jealousy healthy for a writer, or even justifiable in any case? As long as I am not angry with the person, could this strengthen my writing in some way? Lastly, what is your weakness (writing or otherwise) and how do you go about fixing that?

Still waters always run deep!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Quick Update!


Writing is going . . . okay. I'm lagging at the moment and I need some sleep. I have not added on to Her Fear of Heights in several days-- a bad habbit I need to break!

I ordered Spirit Bound by Richelle Mead as well as Spells by Aprilynne Pike. Can't wait! :)

Must write about 200 words before bed. Writer-worthy updates are coming soon! See ya!


Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Way To Run a Blog!

I wish I could say I have an excuse for not blogging in . . . months. I don't.

Here's what I've been up to-

Feb and March went by so quickly . . . I don't even remember what was so important I had to quite blogging . . . Let's make a list of how I like to waste my time! :)


Yes, I watched Avatar: The Last Airbender around January. I'll post tons more on that soon (for real) but I am proud to say I'm glad I watched the show. It is by far the best Nick and animated show I''ve ever seen. It was dazzling and addictive in a way that I couldn't stop watching until I finished all three seasons. 5 stars!
Remember the X-Men movies? My best friend Sarah got me into the cartoon version of Evolutions. I haven’t seen the movie, but the series is something good to watch. Not as good as Avatar of course, but entertaining nonetheless.
Saturday, I watched my first Bollywood film. It was called Jaane Tu...Ya Jaane Na. It was very interesting, yet relatable. Though most of it was in Hindi, subtitles worked fine and the characters also randomly use English. Easy to understand. Plus, India seems to have a love for song and dance—am I right? :D
A few weeks ago, I watched a film called Slumdog Millionaire and fell in love . . . with Dev Patel!  On a serious note, the movie is about a boy named Jamal who grew up in the slums of India, fell in love with a girl, and participates in a game show like Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? He was arrested under suspicion of cheating. Dev Patel (Jamal) is marvelous in this movie. So are his co-stars who played his brother Sallim, friend Latika, and Jamal at younger ages. So that makes 3 actors for Jamal, Sallim, and Latika. Those kids really carried the movie, too. Rubina Ali plays youngest Latika and she was brilliant! She and her co-star both actually live in the slums of Mumbai. For some reason, his name escapes me, though he is equally awesome! Anyway, all I can say is that this movie is breathtaking in every sense. Go watch it!
Eclipse (June 30th) I’ll be watching this solely to see how Kristen Stewart does. She is my favorite actress.
The Last Airbender (July 2nd) I MUST SEE THIS MOVIE!! More thoughts are coming soon, but would you look at the title? Sound familiar? It is! It’s the movie based off my favorite TV show ever! Can’t you tell I’m excited? :D Dev Patel is in this as Zuko, my favorite character . . . it should be a very nice day for me!
Ah, so many books. I only have two favorites so far from the past few blog-free months:
Fire by Kristin Cashore
Q&A by Vikas Swarup (the novel Slumdog Millionaire is based from)
In the mean time, a book called Spells by our loved Aprilynne Pike came out today! I'm ordering it along with: signed coppies of Spirit Bound and Succubus Shadows by Richelle Mead, Slumgirl Dreaming: My Journey to the Stars by Rubina Ali, The Last Airbender Prequel: Zuko's Story, and The Last Airbender Movie Novelization. :)
I finished part one of my novel Sleep, but have yet to do much more. No party yet, sadly.
Her Fear of Heights is lagging on at the moment. I have about 13,500-something words. As you know, this was started in November for NaNoWriMo and never finished. It is a novel for my family and friends so they’ll at least stop bugging me about writing more, blah, blah, blah. I only have May to finish before my Uncle David, who promised to print it, retires this summer. So it’s back to writing after this.
However, I’m not entirely useless—I did Script Frenzy this year! A sister to big event in November, SF challenges you to write a 100-pages screenplay in 30 days. April 1st- 30th. This applies to you even if you’re like me, and have never written a script before. It was a challenge even with the correct software, Celtex, and I only got 66 pages done. With the fail, however, came the hook for a great novel I plan to write in November for NaNoWriMo. I don’t have a title yet, but it’s basically about this girl named Jin who goes to live with this family she’s never met after living her entire life in the circus. She trains to be an acrobatic performer, cleans and elephant, falls in love, and engages in other fun activities.  One thing I found interesting about her is she’s half-Asian and half-white with blond hair. In a world where grey eyes are common and feathered horses roam the land, you’d think that would be less of an oddity. However, this girl looks to be Asian . . . with blond hair. Lol! She’s adorable, really, though the hair doesn’t look as good on her as it would her friends. The world, though entirely fictional, was inspired by China and India, using element from both cultures and sometimes adding my own twist on things. I’ll let you know how it goes!


Thursday, February 4, 2010

How evil!

A few days ago, my Microsoft Word trial quit working. I'm supposed to buy the full version in order to resume working. I'm going to talk to the family about that, but am sure to start writing again in the near future.

Current Progress On Novels:
Sleep- 2/5 Chapter 19, End of Part One, Pages: 515, Words: 85,025
Her Fear of Heights: a novella- 2/5 Chapter Five, Pages: 41, Words: 12,589

I'm off to bake a peanutbutter-chocolate cake! Ymmmm! :)
Tonight, I'll upload the pictures, and will give you a full description of my Richelle Mead Adventure when I sit down at the computer this Friday.

Still waters always run deep!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


know you're all interested to hear about my meeting with Richelle Mead, but that'll come latter. Meaning, I can't upload the pictures yet . . .

Anywho, I've been wanting to do this for a while. I'm going to go over the Best of 2009 Books. We have many different categories, such a Best Couple etc.

Top Five Books I Read In 2009!
5. Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause
4. 13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher
3. Succubus Blues by Richelle Mead
2. The Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead
1. Keeping You a Secret by Julie Anne Peters

Top Five Favorite Covers:
(These are books I’ve seen, but not necessarily read yet)
5. At Grave’s End by Jeaniene Frost
4. Succubus Heat by Richelle Mead
3. Blood Promise by Richelle Mead
2. Spells by Aprilynne Pike
1. The Den of Shadows by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes
Bonus: I also loved Firestorm and Cape Storm covers by Rachel Caine! Well, I think this is more like numbers six or seven. :D

Top Five Favorite Character POVs!
5. Tally Youngblood from the Uglies series by Scott Westerfeld
4. Cat Crawfield from the Halfway to the Grave series by Jeaniene Frost
3. Melinda Sardino in Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
2. Rose Hathaway in Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead
1. Joanne Baldwin in the Weather Warden series by Rachel Caine

Top Five Favorite Side Characters:
5. Hannah Baker from Jay Asher’s 13 Reasons Why
4. Carter the angel from Succubus Blues by Richelle Mead
3. David from the Weather Warden series by Rachel Caine
2. Rahel from the Weather Warden series
1. Dimitri “Dimka” Belikov from Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy series

Favorite Couples!
4. Cat and Bones from the Halfway to the Grave series by Jeaniene Frost
3. David and Joanne from Rachel Caine’s Weather Warden Series
2. Holland Jagger and Cece Goddard
1. Rosemarie Hathaway and Dimitri Belikov



Friday, January 15, 2010

Sad and happy news!

Okay, so it isn't exactly sad, but I have to add another chapter to Part One of Sleep. Oh well, just one more chapter and I'll be done. then, I can have my little party!

The good news is I'll be meeting one of my favorite authors on Saturday, 1/16/10! I'm going with two of my friends and am so excited!!! :)

Richelle Mead, author of Vampire Academy 1-4 (five and six on the way) as well as Succubus Blues 1-4 (five and six are also on the way), is coming close to where I live for a book signing! *squee!* Promise to post pictures of me meeting the lovely Miss Mead.

See ya!