Like 10 months ago, it maybe sorta looked like I was making my blogging comeback. Welllll as has become evident in the past year… stuff doesn’t play out how you plan, expect, or want it. I mean, we all already know this, but it definitely is worth remembering. You really do never know what life is going to throw at you, and you don’t know where you’ll be or where you’ll go.
You also can never trust when someone says “Oooh, get ready for my comeback~~!” because sometimes entertainment agencies lie and your current favourite boyband is exiled from releasing a new album for an entire year.
So. Do I want to recap what’s been going on with me? Meh. 2016 was a loooooong year, and one that definitely changed me, but it would take another year in itself to reflect on that. So instead I’m just going to focus on the present because if anything that’s the Major Thing I took away from 2016 and it’s something I’ve been getting better at with each passing year. Not dismissing the past, but growing and learning from it. And trust me when I say that 2016 was definitely a learning experience. About everything, but mostly myself.
I started this blog 5 years ago (omg what) to document my quest to become a published author. That is still 100% totally one of my life goals, and a major part of who I am… but since then life has sort of took a sliiight shift. This sounds super dramatic, but it’s actually just me being unnecessarily cryptic about what I did last year, lol. (One day, I’ll blog about it.) Anyway, my blog shall soon be reflecting this so-called shift because 2017’s concept (hahahahhh) is simply just… making the most out of life. I know that’s super cheese and #basic, but I can’t find a better way to describe it right now. Tbh it mostly just means I’m going to be blogging more about dramas and food–something I’ve wanted to do for a while! But you know. Life.
Okay, so YAY. It’s good to be (almost) back! See you soon… for realz.
One of my 2015 goals should have been updating this blog more often than the 5 odd times each year, but ahh sometimes I just feel like I have nothing to ~report, you know? Like at this point in time and space, I’m not writing 24/7 or even 15/6 due to working FT and other Life Duties. Progress is steady, but slow-ish… and do I really need to blog about revising a single chapter or finally conquering a pesky paragraph of dialogue? I mean, that’s what twitter is for, right?
DESPITE THE ABOVE PONDERING, I’ve decided that I should definitely document progress or whatever at least once in a while, sooo here goes~
The first draft of my current work-in-progress ETERNITY CHASERS has been written. Right now, I’m doing the first round of revisions, i.e. my own read-through and my own major editing of the entire manuscript. Basically during the first draft stage, I write like the wind. It’s almost like word vomit except not as gross, but pretty messy. WORDS EVERYWHERE which basically equals me devoting a lot of time to clean up. That’s how I roll, and that’s what works for me. It’s just a slooow process since I tend to go into perfectionist mode and will literally spend days on a single paragraph until I think it’s as good as it can be.
I’ve split ETERNITY CHASERS into four parts (the first five chapters can be found here actually!), and right now I’m hardcore revising the second part. Yup, I’m not even half way through which is frightening to me. Like am I EVER going to be finished? WHY IS THIS TAKING ME SO LONG? DOES IT MEAN I’M NOT CUT OUT FOR THIS? WHY AM I SUCH A FAILURE BLAH BLAH BLAH. You know how it is. Whenever these questions plague me, all I can do is think about my 2015 Rules to Live By. Be positive! Shake it off! Keep trying! Endurance is key and I need to keep going NO MATTER WHAT. I know I can do this, and I want to do this. And in time, I will.
My current goal (ahahhahaha goals) is to be finished revising this by the end of summer. Crossables crossed that by the end of August, I will be able to email my CP(s…? More on this below) and be like, “YO, MY MS IS FINALLY READY FOR YOU TO READ AND TEAR APART. HAVE AT IT!”
Yeaaah, so as of now I only have one official CP (the dauntless/wonderful/hilarious Jen Ellision). Jen is and has been super helpful and encouraging with all of my random, manic texts and emails. If it was up to me, I wouldn’t care about finding other CPs because I already have a great one. However, I know that I need at least ONE other. I do have beta readers (hi, family! hi, friends whom I pushed this task upon!), but I know I need someone else to crack open my MS, help mend the cracks and polish this baby up. I am not entirely sure where to begin the search, but this is definitely something I will have to think about soon.
Aaand that’s pretty much the status of Writing Things.
In other news, I’m off to New York City on Tuesday for BEA 2015! This will be my fourth year attending and excited would be a grave understatement for my feelings about this upcoming trip.
Most years I make a ist of goals to accomplish from January to December. This year, I’m going to try something different. Instead of making a check list that will probably make me go insane by November when I realize that I’m nowhere close to completion, I’m going to make a list of rules to abide by. It’s true that maybe I’ll still go insane, but whatever.
This isn’t the first time, nor will it be the last time that I make reference to this autobiography I had to write in fourth grade wherein one of the chapters was about the future and what/who/where we wanted to be in 2015. GOOD LORD IN HEAVEN, it is now 2015. In order to make 9 year old Lindsey proud of Lindsey in 2015, these are the rules that I’ve come up with in order to ensure that I can be the best possible version of …myself.
1) Be positive.
Completely easier said than done, but it’s something I truly need to try to do at all times. Of course there will be moments that I want to rant forever about sheer dumbness or maybe I’ll just be in a mood, but I want to try my best to keep my spirits up. Positivity also means squashing negative vibes, and I don’t just mean my surroundings (because hello, you probably can’t do that unless you live in a utopia, and even then…). I mean that I also want to rid myself of negativity. I really want to diminish the negative attitude I have and the comments I make about whatever stuff or people. I think I’m generally OKAY when it comes to this… but well, anyone who is being honest with themselves will admit that nobody is ever 100% polite in the privacy of their own mind, if you know what I mean.
2. Live and train as if I’m preparing for the apocalypse.
Time to brush up on my zombie-hacking skills! That will be accomplished by living a healthy lifestyle. I’m very on/off about this, as I’m sure many people are. Some weeks I’m ON THE BALL with exercising and eating healthy. Other weeks, I’m a cookie monster/chip fiend who can conquer an AYCE sushi dinner without breaking a sweat. This year, I want to continue what I’ve been doing for the past few years, but the only difference is that I want to keep it up. Obviously there will be days when you gotta treat yo’self, but I’m only getting older (oh gosh help) and I do have to start taking better care of my body. Plus, I’m serious about the apocalypse. Like I don’t want to die because I wasn’t able to outrun an alien creature or something.
3. Shake it off.
I’m very much an ~in the moment~ kind of person where my mood can drastically change with a single word. And I mean like, Bruce Banner transforming into the Incredible Hulk split second change. Paired with Rule #1, I seriously do need to learn to shake things off. Or more bluntly, not give a shiz. This is especially true for when I have to socialize with friends, family, co-workers, or just people in general. Too many times have I let something so insignificantly minor get the best of me and ruin my day. I need to not beat myself up over whatever life decides to throw at me or what people say to me.
4. Keep trying.
Master Yoda may have be the head of the Jedi Council on Coruscant, but I’m gonna have to agree with Kanan from Star Wars Rebels–the whole “Do or do not. There is no try,” thing is …Just no. The reason I dismiss his lesson is because sometimes YEAH, YOU’RE GONNA FAIL. Sometimes stuff just isn’t going to work out for you. Sometimes it’s gonna hit the fan and whatever goal you set out to accomplish isn’t going to be perfectly completed with a pretty bow on top. That’s the reality of life. And that’s why I have to keep trying.
5. The past is in the past.
(Did you sing that line Queen Elsa-style? Because I did.) In accordance with Rule #3, I need to stop dwelling on what’s already been said or done. Even if I had a time traveling device, I can’t actually change the past because that wouldn’t solve anything–I’d still have the memories. And that’s the major kicker here. Life happens, and people change. Relationships rearrange themselves. Sorry Ryan Gosling, but sometimes it really IS over (I’m still holding out for him to get back together with Rachel though, ahhh). Memories should be cherished, but I can’t let them dictate my life. I need to realize that I’m a different person now and whatever held true in 2005 or 1995 means nothing in 2015. I need to stop lamenting on how much easier or interesting life was back then and instead I need to focus on living in the present day. To quote another line from Frozen: Say goodbyeeeeeeee to the pain of the past!
Aaand there you go. I don’t think I’m asking too much of myself, right? Right?! Although these are all LIFE rules, I think they can each be hammered down to specifically reflect my quest to publication as well.
In summary: Endurance is key and I need to keep going NO MATTER WHAT.
It’s just like John Lennon sang: I’M A LOSER.
But really, am I? No, she said, answering her own question. Although I may not have hit that 50K mark within these thirty days of November, I was able to do a whole bunch of other stuff. Since I love lists, here is one of my mini, albeit significant achievements:
1. Doctor Who marathons. This started back in September, but basically with the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who on November 23rd, SPACE channel aired marathons and specials every weekend. That’s basically what I did on Sundays, the day I usually reserve for write-a-thons. I would always have my laptop with me, but my eyes were glued to the television screen instead. It was cool because my mom and I were able to ~bond over these marathons and I got to rewatch some of my favourite episodes and relive some nightmares, too (ANGELS. DOLLS. UGH…)
2. Sailor Moon marathons. This was also a thing that I did in November. This might also be a thing I am still doing in December.
3. I wrote a short story. Okay, so here’s probably the biggest item on this list. In November, I spent a good week brainstorming, writing, and revising a short story to submit to Inaccurate Realities. That totally paid off because said short story was selected for the upcoming issue in January. Yay! More details about that and the other stories featured in the issue can be found here. I’m sooooo so excited. While it is beyond awesome that my story is going to be in print, I’m also just really ~in like~ with the story I wrote. I remember finishing it and telling myself that even if it wasn’t chosen for publication, it didn’t matter because I was just glad I wrote it. Now I’m also glad (and nervous) that I’ll get to share this story …with the world.
4. Catching Fire! I saw Catching Fire and it was AMAZING. I mean, there are some casting choices that I’m still side-eyeing, but I was so impressed by the film. Jennifer Lawrence… I didn’t think she could amaze me further, but dang. I also saw Thor 2 early in the month and that film was also super exciting and entertaining. In addition, trailers for Divergent and Vampire Academy. YES PLEASE AND THANK YOU.
5. The Fiery Heart. One of my most anticipated novels of the year was released in November. Much of the month was spent freaking out over the book’s arrival, freaking out over Amazon not delivering the Kindle version to me (AGAIN), and finally reading the book and freaking out about that. Of course, the book was A+++. Another great book I read in November was Susan Dennard’s “Something Strange and Deadly.” Such a refreshingly enjoyable read with an amazing protagonist and cool setting.
6. Agents of SHIELD and Reign a.k.a. the two shows I’ve become addicted to this fall season. It’s been a whiiiile since I’ve had a “regular” show that I’d watch each week, so to have two of them is a Big Deal. Funnily enough, these two shows get so much flack for being “boring” or “inaccurate” or “pointless,” but WHATEVER. They’re fun.
7. Disney’s Aladdin: The Musical. Toronto is super lucky to get the pre-Broadway run of Disney’s Aladdin musical, and my sisters and I saw a performance just a few days ago. It was MAGICAL. I swear, I couldn’t breathe from some of the Genie’s scenes, especially “Friend Like Me” because I was shaking with laughter. Overall, it was an enjoyable production and I will definitely be picking up the OBCR next year. And Jafar voice actor IRL…playing Jafar. I’ll never get over this fact.
8. 25K of The Neverland Cure. Right. So firstly, I did come up with an actual title for my Neverland Remix story and it’s THE NEVERLAND CURE (although I still like THE NEVERLAND REMEDY. I’m undecided). Secondly, while I didn’t hit the 50K mark, I did make it halfway which I think is a pretty dang good feat considering I spent a total of three days writing. Yes. It’s time for a confession: I only dedicated three days to writing this particular story. No wonder I failed at 50K, right? I don’t even really know if I can label myself as a participant in NaNoWriMo this year because I didn’t slave over my word count every day. I think that’s a blessing in disguise, though. A different year, a different experience.
Some of my non-Nano writing occurred because of inevitable procrastination. Fortunately, I procrastinated by writing the short story mentioned in #3. That definitely makes this one of those bright side/silver lining situations. I am sure there is also a lesson in here somewhere about just going with your instincts. I knew that I should’ve been working on TNC/TNR, but a voice kept urging me to work on the short story instead. I listened to that voice and fortunately, it paid off. 😀
I’m still in deep like with this work in progress and I will probably continue to add to its word count every now and then. Although I wasn’t able to actually write the story, I did make several notes on my phone throughout the month. SO NEVERLAND, I WILL BE BACK.
And so, the moral of the story: I did not win NaNoWriMo this year, but what I did instead was pretty worthwhile. You win some, you lose some. Except, sometimes you also win when you lose. Or something like that.
Hi, December! 😐
So. Here’s a grand reflection about life and math. About measuring your life …in fiction. More specifically, fictional characters. This is something that my sisters and I have always jokingly done. 11 years old? Your Hogwarts letter should be arriving soon! 16? CHOOSE YOUR FACTION! Just turned 18? Congrats! No more putting your name in the lottery for The Hunger Games! 21: Winner winner, chicken dinner, time to go play blackjack with Jim Sturgess in Vegas. And so on. (Don’t even get me started on the von Trapp kids. That one kept us all going for years and I was super sad when I turned 17 because never again could some dude named Rolf serenade me before BETRAYING MY AUSTRIAN-LOVING FAMILY.) Anyway.
The older I get, the more ANXIOUS I get (naturally) because there aren’t as many milestones for fictional characters, nor are there many more fictional characters with significant ages. Not very often do you read or hear the lines, “And on the eve of your 33rd birthday, your birthright will be revealed and your epic quest will begin!” Not that I’m about to turn 33 (oh gosh, please no, not yet), but time is ticking away and soon enough I will be. And who will I compare myself to? Lady Mary Crawley? Esme Cullen? One of those Desperate Housewives? (haha, no thanks!) THE OLDER VERSION OF ROSE FROM TITANIC? *hyperventilates into a paper bag*
So where are all of these seemingly manic thoughts coming from and where are they going? Well, yesterday I turned 26 (yikes). I trampled through my brain trying to think of a fictional character who is this age and what sort of awesome or amusing connection I could match my life with. I actually did end up coming up with one. Weirdly, it’s the protagonist from a series by one of my favourite authors: Eugenie Markham from Richelle Mead’s Dark Swan books. Unless I find out that I am actually the daughter of the Storm King in the next year, however, I don’t really know how I feel about that connection. I don’t even know if I want to think about how I feel because I don’t do well with the fae (no matter how charming) or douchebag foxes. (Still totally love the series, though!)
And so, for the sake of fun times (and to ease my mind), I’ve decided to write my life in fictional story synopsis form. Yeah, it’s true that I’m not currently in the midst of some ultra interesting life journey at the moment, so I’ll definitely have to over-dramatize. I do that on a normal basis, though, so I think it’s all good.
“So we talked all night about the rest of our lives, where we’re gonna be when we turn twenty-five…”
Throughout high school, Lindsey could never get the first line from that Vitamin C graduation song out of her head. Where would she be at 25? It seemed like such a monumental age; the quarter of a century, the silver year, the epitome of adult life. Maybe she would be married. Maybe she would be living in her own apartment with a golden retriever named Chace. Maybe she’d be living in France. Maybe she’d even have learned how to swim by then. Dreams would come and go, but one would always be definite. She would be a published writer–that was always the goal, and it had been ever since she declared it so in a fourth grade project about The Future.
Now, at 26, Lindsey still has no idea where her life is headed, and she’s had more than her share of quarter-life crises. She may still live and breathe words, but her job–her actual day job–requires donning a lab coat whilst fussing over medical supplies more than it does all-nighter writing sessions spent brainstorming tension-filled metaphors. Needless to say, it’s not exactly the future her younger self envisioned.
THEN WHAT? Well, that’s the thing. I don’t know what happens next. Dun dun dunnn. But really, the pool of fictional characters is diminishing in size. Time is flyyying. And I think that’s the point of this post. To point out how WEIRD time is. And that I am getting old.
The End. TO BE CONTINUED…
Let’s not call them goals. Let’s call them, SELF-DEMANDS.
• edit Fear Not The Fall into a viable second draft.
• revisit Starless Night and …do something about it.
• finish the first draft of Verona Horse Mermaid.
• participate in NaNo 2013 (???)
• roughly outline Peter Pan remix story
• upon revising FNTF, let someone else read it
• before turning 26 (z o m g), have one of your projects READY FOR QUERYING.
Is this all too bold? Probably.
AND IT RAINED TODAY.
That’s not what’s important, however. What is important is that in the summer, I decided to make a huge change to the plot of The Story. I decided to crop out this one plot detail that was pretty much intertwined into the entire latter half of the story. While getting rid of every trace of that plot detail wasn’t too harrowing of a process, the real challenge lay in sewing the rest of The Story back together. The summer of 2012 was freaking busy. Basically, I had NO TIME for anything. Thankfully I was able to find the time in September to work on piecing The Story back together. Yes, I’ve had to neglect a bunch of stuff in order to make time for these pesky revisions, but sacrifices had to be made. Earlier today, I finally revised that annoying last scene of doom.
I totally still need to do an entire read-over of the whole dang thing just for the sake of doing that, but I’ve pretty much filled in all of the plot holes (little and big), fixed continuity issues (effing time travel), and it’s all good. Of course there’s still the whole frantic “OH MY GOSH WHAT IF THIS SUCKS YOU ARE THE WORST WRITER IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD” paranoia floating around in my mind, but it’s …just about ready.
That felt weird to type. So it looks like October will be THE month. The month of …querying. GULP.
Maybe it’s a good thing I have a lot stuff happening in October. Hopefully my mind will be too distracted by life stuff to be freaking out about this stuff. We’ll see what happens.
And hmm, maybe now I should stop referring to The Story as The Story. *creates new tag*