Thursday, October 29, 2009

Writing the Where

I visited Alcatraz last Thursday. It was a foggy morning, giving the island an eerie feeling as it appeared (not that Alcatraz needs any help to make it feel eerie).

I took pictures as we walked the path to the cell-block and other buildings of the island. I kept thinking how it was awful that I didn't have a book planned for this setting. I would've been able to use those pictures to create a detailed setting. I'd have been able to accurately describe the rusted and broken top of the water tower, the green moss climbing ten feet up a rock face, and the red roof of the guard tower.


The details in our settings ground us in the story, making us feel that the place (and so the characters) could exist.

Of course, it is much easier to create a vivid setting when you have been to that location. I struggle with real life locations and so prefer to create my own whenever possible. But I still have to make sure the details are right for what hints I want the reader to get about my characters and what emotions I want to evoke.

Do you prefer to write real or made up settings?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


I've started thinking about Nanowrimo.

I didn't participate last year and I'm seriously thinking about doing it this year. I've started thinking about the characters I want to write about. Deciding on names and vocations, strengths and flaws. I'm getting more and more excited as it gets closer. And more and more scared at the daunting challenge of it.

Are you going to participate in Nanowrimo? What are you doing to prepare?

Friday, October 16, 2009

I'm Insane

I've decided I am insane. No, the voices in my head didn't tell me. I figured it out all on my own.

I'm insane because tomorrow I am flying with my one-year old. That's right, I will be trapped on a plane with my daughter and whatever snacks I bring along (good luck getting an extra bag of peanuts from the airline). And I paid money to have the experience!

I'm also insane because I decided to write a novel over a year ago. And it has stayed with me. The novel haunts me during meetings, in the shower, and just before I fall asleep. The characters act out in my mind, creating their world and beliefs and values. They develop into people I hate and love. And I also love the process of creating them.

What about writing your novel has been haunting you lately?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Hello World!

I took a break from blogging. I know - you may have noticed since it was well over a month since I posted anything substantial.

There were several reasons for the hiatus.
  1. I tiled my kitchen, dining room, and guest bathroom. (Okay - I did not tile it all myself, but I most definitely grouted)
  2. My team at work doubled in size.
  3. Season premieres of my favorite shows - Castle anyone? And wow, Flash Forward is my new fave!
  4. I started thinking about blog posts when I should have been thinking about my book.

That's right - I met that dreadful stage when blogging started taking over much of my writing time. Since I have so very little of it, I wanted to focus more on writing. I also started feeling stressed about blogging. Something I quickly realized was ridiculous since the only person putting the pressure on to blog was me.

So, I went cold turkey for a while. I didn't quite get my novel to where I want it (grrr...endings!) but I did feel the stress level go down.

Are you at (or over) the point where blogging takes up most of your writing time? What do you do to combat it?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009