Writing

I did it! I conquered my novel!

I’ve alluded several times to a novel that I’ve been working on for more than four years, a novel about a muse in the shape of an invisible bunny who goes out of his way to destroy writers and other artists. I have often struggled with this novel because I did not know how to end it, but now I can proudly say that,  I have finally managed to type “The End” at the bottom of the document.

I finally finished it! Writing the last few paragraphs was excruciating, and I’m pretty sure they’re terrible, haha, but that doesn’t matter because The Muse Bunny is now COMPLETE at 84,352 words, and I can’t tell you how absolutely happy I am about it!

Continue reading “I did it! I conquered my novel!”

Writing

Oh those seductive plot bunnies!

Plot bunnies can be quite tempting. You would be sitting there, working on your WIP when suddenly, “Ding! Ding! Ding! You’ve got a new plot!” Try as you might, you will not be able to ignore that call. It will keep bothering you and dancing around your head until you throw up your arms in frustration and admit defeat. You will scramble around for a scrap of paper or a pencil and frantically jot down anything you can remember.

I’ve been struggling with that lately. I know I have to learn to be monogamous with my plots just as I am monogamous with the books I read, but it’s so difficult! Plot bunnies have been invading my mind all the time, at a time when I’m desperately trying to finish a novel that’s – ironically – about an evil bunny who sucks the life from any artist he latches himself onto. Continue reading “Oh those seductive plot bunnies!”

Writing

We’re just as published as you are.

Today I came across a post stating that self-published writers can’t really say that they’re published, because self-publishing is so “easy” and doesn’t require the same amount of work that goes into traditional publishing, and only writers with books published by traditional publishing houses can ever have the “PUBLISHED” label slapped onto their foreheads. As a self-published writer, I have to say that I was a bit miffed (okay I was more than a bit miffed) and indignant. To think that all this time I’ve been calling myself a published writer only to find that I’m actually not according to some people. My eye twitched.

I guess it’s easy to look down on self-published writers because they might not know what the process entails. But we are published writers. We are also editors, proofreaders, cover designers, marketers, campaign managers, e-book designers, social media experts and publishers.

Continue reading “We’re just as published as you are.”

General · Inanity · Writing

Pixar’s Rules of Storytelling

The other day I came across the 22 rules of storytelling, shared by Emma Coats, a storyboard artist at Pixar Studios, on her twitter account. I found them to be truly inspirational and yet at the same time quite simple, and when you think about them and consider Pixar’s great films, you realise that these rules are all you need to create a wonderful, gripping tale. My commentary is in plain text. 🙂

1. You admire a character for trying more than for their successes. Does this remind you of Mr. Fredricksen from Up? We didn’t know if he would succeed in getting his house to Paradise Falls, but yet we all cheered him on and admired him for the way he tried to get there.

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Writing

The Chopping Board

You’ve finished writing a story, you’ve let it sit aside for a day or a week or maybe even a month, ignoring the dust accumulating on it, trying to distract yourself with new ideas and reading that pile of books you’ve left sitting on your desk for the last few months. But you know you’re going to have to come back to your story eventually. You know you’re going to have to place it on the chopping board.

You need to arm yourself with a few things – a red pen or a computer, a trusty beta-reader or editor, and a whole lot of grit. You may also want to throw in some chocolate to calm your nerves. You’re going to need it. Place your papers or your computer on the metaphorical chopping board and get ready to start cutting and dicing! It’s not as bad as it sounds really, and I should know because I’m done my fair share of cutting (yes I know that sounds bad), but you can’t deny that some of the things in that book have got to go.

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Reading · Writing

I’m scared to read my own book!

As writers, we like to think our books are perfect and completely error-free, but deep in our hearts and in the dark corners of our minds, there is a niggling worry that, somewhere, the typo/spelling mistake/punctuation mistake/grammar mistake of doom is lurking, waiting to annoy our unsuspecting readers.

In a recent post about pet peeves, some readers commented on how much spelling mistakes and typos bother them when reading, and I totally understand that. I too feel a bit irked when I’m reading a book released by a well-known publishing house, only to come across a misplaced punctuation mark or a blatantly obvious typo. You’d think their editors would do a better job, right?

Continue reading “I’m scared to read my own book!”

General · Writing

ASPIRING WRITER: The User Guide and Maintenance Manual (2)

This is a continuation from the first part of the user guide, which you can find here. In the second part, I’ll be discussing your unit’s functions, relationships with other units and maintenance! I must say, writing this has been fun, and it has made me prob myself from all angles (not physically!) to describe how a typical writer is.

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Programming

Your ASPIRING WRITER™, with enough motivation and persuasion, can perform as follows:

Writer: Your ASPIRING WRITER™ is first and foremost a writer, a product of many years spent poring over a paper or a keyboard. Provide your unit with the complimentary plot present in the package and watch them get write down to the task. It may take the ASPIRING WRITER™ a little over a month to finish a novel, but don’t expect them to give it to you until after many revisions. Alternatively, if you do not wish for your ASPIRING WRITER™ to write novels, you could assign any writing task to them (articles, essays, etc.)… though that would probably drive them over the edge and you’d be better off pre-ordering our FREELANCE WRITER™ unit.

Continue reading “ASPIRING WRITER: The User Guide and Maintenance Manual (2)”

Writing

The editing process is endless.

Recently I received a review stating that there were mistakes in my novel that affected the person’s reading experience. Of course I was sad at first, then I became confused. I know I’ve done extensive edits on my novel, so how could there be any errors? I asked the reviewer to elaborate on their complaints… and guess what? It turned out that they were right. I had been so proud of the book, that I failed to notice some of the mistakes that were still there.

Continue reading “The editing process is endless.”