Scene #24 and #25 Done!

Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple

― Dr. Seuss

Dark Forest

Scene Inspiration

Again two complete rewrites. Both scenes turned out much better that I thought and they both have the potential to be fleshed out with more dialogue if needed once I go through them  once again. For now I think the best thing is to let them simmer in darkness (it is a dark story after all) instead of pick and pull at it until my brain goes numb. I don’t want to experience that dead feeling anytime soon.

I’m aiming for two more scenes by the end of the night while the motivation and focus is there. Maybe the Olympics is inspiring me more than I realize even though I’m not going out of my way to watch it. I’m not sacrificing my writing time unless I have to.  You see I have this little goal in my mind to get all 7 scenes done by the start of August. After that I have 30 more scenes left and a scene a day for the next month sounds quite manageable. Now that I can see the finish line for this rewrite I want to do more and pick up the pace once again. I am very ready to have my trusted journalism bestie beta read it for me and I’m craving feedback from fresh eyes. 

Between the revision bursts I love to stalk  visit some of my favorite author blogs and read the how-they-got-their-agent posts and their publishing journey posts which makes me really excited. Then I come across an author who had their story down and revised (I assumed they revised) in three months before submitting. 12 months later and her debut is out this September! I know all publishing journeys are different (and slower)  and that this WIP might never be the one that gets published. But surfing through blog posts makes me realize I can go faster if I choose to and it does not necessarily equate to losing quality. I just need that razor sharp focus athletes have in their eyes when they sprint to the finishing line to get me through..

Anyone have a possible end date on their revision? Either way I am cheering for you and breaking out the virtual champagne. Who knows, I might even share 😉 

Love and light,

Anushka xx

Advertisements

Progress Update Scene 18 – 23

Fiction is a lie, and good fiction is the truth inside the lie.

― Stephen King

dew soaked dandelion

Inspiration 

I introduce to you a whole bunch of mini updates. Enjoy 🙂

Scene 18

This scene was a completely surprise. Nothing at all like I imagined it and wasn’t in the outline I had drafted when I started this block revision. It marked a point when a friendship between two characters blossomed and I ended this scene with a happy sigh and feeling far less deranged. The last comment may seem odd, but Scene #17 really did test me.

I already see myself going back and changing a few things but the solid foundation is there, which is rare since a majority of this second revision is a complete rewrite sprinkled with first draft gold. Or should I say…lightly dusted?

1741 unexpected and delightful words.

Scene 19

I got my revision mojo back in this scene after taking a few days break. I stopped just where things got really, really  good so I would be excited to jump straight into things the next day!

1779 words

Scene 20: I learned something completely unexpected about an important character in this scene and I was so grateful to know that the muse was back on board. You know those exciting little sparks? I decided to follow what I did the previous day and just stop. I was ready to power through the next scene but I just wanted to prolong and generate that moment of excitement just a tad bit more.

1522 words.

Scene 21, 22, 23

Three scenes in one day! All in short bursts. How was this even achieved? I actually hauled my sorry butt to the gym at 7am and my mind and body connected in this amazing way and I felt I found the missing piece. I have been putting my gym routine aside and all the benefits it had on my muse slowly unraveled and disappeared. Note to self: Be active, be healthy – preferably in the early morning! I recently re-read all these scenes just to double and triple check I did not just regurgitate complete and utter rubbish and found myself wanting to read more. I feel like I got a handle on the pacing and my WIP once again after hitting a bit of muddled chaos.

2118,  400 and 1045 respectively.

This week’s goal is 7 scenes. It’s also a big week for me because I am returning to work after taking a glorious few months off between relocating countries (again) to get this revision back on track. On top of that I have a long-lost cousin staying with us for a few weeks and will be showing her around but the fire to revise is back once again and I know that I will make the time to get things firing on the revision front of this roller coaster journey.

Where on the roller coaster are you currently on?

Love and light,

Anushka xx

Writing and Olympics!

First of all, the opening ceremony – how good was that? Acknowledging great literary talent! I feel that sometimes people forget about the writer/s behind the world and behind the magic. Think of all those Oscar winners who fail to mention the actual author of the book the film was based on. Makes me fume every time. Like hello, there will be NO AWARD and you would not be where you are professionally if there wasn’t a writer who chose to live in the cave for a couple of years years give or take.

On a different not, what an incredible year for women too. Every country this year had female representatives! Incredible. It does not solve the whole gender divide ‘thing’ which bothers me (I won’t go into great detail right now) but it is still nonetheless a great achievement and it made my little heart smile. It also made me question how much I do in my own life to grow as a woman and take advantage about the freedoms available to me.

Which brings me to writing. To achieve what I want to achieve as a writer I need to have the razor sharp focus I saw gleaming in the eyes of the athletes representing their country. Therefore I vow to have seven scenes revised/rewritten by the end of this week which will officially bring me to the half way point of this WIP. From now on I promise to bounce back from setbacks and trips to writer hell faster and most of I want to get back to blogging regularly once again. After I catch up on my progress update I will go back to my mini updates because they were much more manageable and motivated me to get the grueling scenes done.

What are your Olympic writing goals/ training schedule ?

Love and Light,

Anushka xx

Related Links

Kristen’s eye-opening Schedule – Wednesday is Spaghetti Night  

 

 

1 Year Blog Anniversary

The whole point of being alive is to evolve into the complete person you were intended to be.
– Oprah Winfrey

balloons balloons balloons

Image

I was living in Vancouver when Finding My Creature was created. I had just moved to Canada and was losing track of the reason I had moved there in the first place –  to discover myself creatively and grow as an artist. Fast forward a year and different country later  that desire has not changed, in fact the urge to enrich my life creatively has grown stronger.

During the past few weeks I have been thinking a lot about this blog. It still feels right. I was worried that I had chosen the wrong name and I was not branding myself correctly as a writer but the journey of finding my creature continues. I have been lucky and so blessed to have connected with many amazing writers and share your writing journey with you. It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one living in a writing/revision cave.

Speaking of that cave I took a mini vacation from it. Not a long one, just a few days. It was nice to be less connected to technology and I think that was one of the contributing factors to why my mind was feeling sluggish and irritable. It made realize that a healthy and happy muse is dependent on a healthy and happy you! So from now on I’m prioritizing the outdoors for my own sanity!

I have my revision mojo-back so my scene updates are coming in case anyone was wondering what had happened to them. I think I’ll post them at the end of each week so I can share other content on this blog to.

Until then, HAPPY MONDAY everyone (Well to those who live in the future)

Love and light,

Anushka xx

My trip to Writer Hell – Scene #17

It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer

– Albert Einstein

Monster jars

Scene #17 Inspiration

So. I’m alive. It’s been a while since my last scene update and I was truly beginning to wonder if I would actually live long enough to fix this scene.  I’m sure as writers  we can all relate to that scene. You know the one that makes you contemplate banging your head against a brick wall so you did not have to be stuck working on that scene. In fact, cleaning also seems strangely enticing when faced with that scene. If you look through the twitter hash tag #writerhell you can find lots of related references to that scene.

Deep breath.

Despite being stranded in my own version of writer hell I managed to refrain from viciously barking at anyone who dared approach my lair. Apparently writers get temperamental and at times downright scary towards loved ones and stray children when something is not going according to plan? Clearly I would never…okay, maybe. Lets not go there.

What I’m trying to say is…I tried everything short of selling my firstborn to the devil to get this scene right. I drew maps, word graphs, I changed writing locations, wrote longhand, typed frantically with a timer, deleted everything and started over (times 8), meditated, napped, pulled out the big guns (instant coffee), searched for visual prompts, wrote to music, wrote in silence, procrastinated, seriously contemplated selling my first born to the devil and may have even cried a little bit. It’s all part of the journey right?

3370 word.

How do you cope in writer hell?

Love and light,

Anushka xx

It’s not you, it’s me.

Gargoyle

Image 

Dear Outline,

You have been good to me and shown a stubborn panster such as myself that there are benefits to sharing the rest of my life with you. I even had our wedding planned and that’s saying a lot because I never was one of those girls until I met you.

I realize now that you aren’t completely right for me. It’s like you suffocate me and tell me what to do even when you’re wrong. I know it’s still the early stages and that I should give you a chance, try couples therapy, anything to reignite the passion we had for each other but…

I’m just not feeling it.

I’m moving on. You see, I met someone who is willing to change a few scenes for me.

That said, it’s not you, it’s me. Actually on second thoughts, it’s just you.

– Writer

PS-  You can keep the 3 deleted scenes, I’m taking the rest. 

Anyone else experience the joy of getting deep into their revision only to realize that some scenes just aren’t meant to be? Are you a plotter, a panster or little bit of both?

Love and light,

Anushka xx

Scene #16 Done

The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it

– James Bryce

Animal in disguise?

World & Character Inspiration

Just a quick post!

UPDATE: I just re-read the whole post and it’s more along the lines of a quick-ish post

1436 Words.

I was happy with how the scene turned out, but I need to revisit my outline and see how solid the next few scenes are and if they are right for the story I have in mind. I have that voice in the back of my head that is telling me something is not quite right. I have learnt from experience – do not ignore that voice! Know of the one? It tortured me only last month.

Also, I read a great book today by Kristen Lamb called Are you There Blog? It’s Me, Writer.  It was definitely a mind opener to me for three main reasons.

  1. It reminded me how much I LOVE to read. I struggle reading works in my own genre when deep into my own writing process (YA, paranormal fantasy) – but others? Absolutely! Why did I not think of this sooner? In moderation Anushka, in moderation…you have to finish your WIP don’t you?
  2. Platforms. The social media kind, not the kind you jump off when you see an oncoming train kind.Have I been using them to my full potential or have I been hiding behind them? As I glance through my website I do not see my name anywhere visible. I guess I should just publish my works under Finding My Creature then?
  3. Being a writer and social media go hand in hand, you are you brand. I always knew this…I just thought I could put it off until later, like the gym – or think ‘seriously’ about it once I reach a milestone.

I’m curious to know your thoughts are on social media. Have you been using it to connect with others under a pen name, your own name…no name? Have you been putting it off until you land an agent/book deal? Do you actively think about the brand you are portraying?

Food for thought. But now I need sleep.

Love and light,

Anushka xx

Scene #15 Done!

It’s kinda silly to say you don’t read YA cuz you’re not a kid. You’re not a hobbit, but at least a few of you read The Lord of the Rings – Bill Cameron (@bcmystery)

Creatures

Scene #15 Inspiration 

I’m excited to be getting into the middle of my story arc and I am very aware that the middle is where most stories fall flat on their face…and die. Maybe that’s why my expectations for my scenes are growing, thus driving me crazy. Refer to my Insecure Writer’s Support Group blog post if you feel like capturing the general gist of what this scene did to me.

Despite the rough start, I’m eager to sink my teeth into the next scene.

1990 words.

Love and light,

Anushka xx

Insecure Writer’s Support Group Post #1

Insecure Writer’s Support Group 

Where do I start?

Dear Revision,

I hate you. I love you. You drive me crazy, but not always in a good way. Take today for example,  it took me eight hours, eight hours to fix a scene today. In revision time, eight hours feels like three whole days without sleep or food to my brain so in theory you almost killed me. I have had no experience with a newborn – or pet – to be adequately prepared for such a thing so that was plain mean.  I would understand if the scene was say, very long, or very broken, but it was neither of those things. It was a fresh rewrite with limitless shiny possibilities in a new world I could not wait to explore – a world you could not wait to have written in so you don’t look pathetic. I understand that a blank page presents its own challenges Revision, but don’t you think NOW is a bit too late to tell me over 150 hours of research, planning and dissecting was not enough to get me though this rewrite? Really? Can’t YOU read the information clearly stated on my index cards and just write it says? No you cannot. Sometimes I wonder if you even graduated kindergarten, you clearly never learnt to read in the first place. Maybe I’ll finger paint my outline next time.

You. Like. To. Drive. Me. CRAZY! Don’t you?

In fact, for a solid five hours today I think I thought I was a saucepan, one I planned on hitting over my head. If that doesn’t make me sound like a crazy person I don’t know what does! You know Revision, I TOOK BREAKS. I actually took breaks today and I cleaned my room and writing space and even snacked healthily. Unless you count those cream puffs I found, but my muse (yes I’m bringing my muse into this now) told me it contained strong traces of protein so I feel no guilt whatsoever for that!

Now where was I…

That’s right I remember now –  I hate you. Today I truly hated you.

But somehow in the last 20minutes of this revising ordeal you transformed the piece of crap you called a scene into something worth having. I don’t want to sound ungrateful, but couldn’t this epiphany happen like say… yesterday? I was so calm and relatively normal before all this. Don’t you want a calm and level-headed writer who actually knows she’s a human being and not a kitchen appliance to polish the story of your dreams?

Clearly not.

I guess this is the path of a creative person… something I hope to deal with better over time. Until then I shall question my sanity every single day and experience an ongoing identity crisis.

That is all Revision. In fact I already feel better for lashing out at you.

Now muse…I have a few words to say to you too.

– Crazy Person

Scene #13 and #14 Done!

Creativity is allowing oneself to make mistakes, Art is knowing which ones to keep

– Scott Adams

The Dark Tree

Scene #14 Inspiration

These scenes were heavily linked so I worked on them both like they were one very, very long scene.

I struggled to bring these two scenes from rough to polished but got there in the end. It always works out somehow even though things looked so dire at one stage I wondered if it was even possible – maybe all the other scenes have been a complete fluke?

These are two important scenes which lead into another world, so I needed that lead-up to be good. So naturally when I want something to be good I come up with crap. I look forward to reading these scenes later to see how they compare with the previous ones.

1243 and 1871 words respectively bringing the grand total to  *drum roll*  24,677words.

I still live in hope that I will stay within my word count. Anything is possible after all 🙂

mothsHow do you deal with transforming a stubborn sub-standard scene?

Love and light,

xx

PS: HAPPY CANADA DAY TO MY LOVELY CANADIAN READERS. My year in Canada was the BEST. It was the most  fantastical and creatively enriching experience of my life  and I cannot wait until the time comes for me to move back there again.

     Scene #13 Inspiration