A Novel Idea: 9/20/2016

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As a writer, keeping inspiration going from week to week can be tough. We want to change that. The point of A Novel Idea is to get your writing juices flowing even when you don’t feel like writing. We also want it to help you dig deeper into what writing looks like for you and let you share it with the world. We’ll be posting installments weekly, all focused on four things: characters, your novel, you writing process, and writing prompts. Follow the weekly guidelines and post it on your blog, then link up with us! We’d love to hear from you each week.

What is your current word count goal for your WIP? What are your typical word count goals for your novels? Do your finished projects usually run shorter or longer than you anticipated?

A Novel Idea: 9/13/2016

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As a writer, keeping inspiration going from week to week can be tough. We want to change that. The point of A Novel Idea is to get your writing juices flowing even when you don’t feel like writing. We also want it to help you dig deeper into what writing looks like for you and let you share it with the world. We’ll be posting installments weekly, all focused on four things: characters, your novel, you writing process, and writing prompts. Follow the weekly guidelines and post it on your blog, then link up with us! We’d love to hear from you each week.

This week, tell us about one of your favorite characters to write. What is your favorite part about writing them? Feel free to share photos and/or snippets.

 

A Novel Idea: 9/6/2016

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As a writer, keeping inspiration going from week to week can be tough. We want to change that. The point of A Novel Idea is to get your writing juices flowing even when you don’t feel like writing. We also want it to help you dig deeper into what writing looks like for you and let you share it with the world. We’ll be posting installments weekly, all focused on four things: characters, your novel, you writing process, and writing prompts. Follow the weekly guidelines and post it on your blog, then link up with us! We’d love to hear from you each week.

When you first get a story idea, what is the first thing you do? How do you develop it further? Do you write it down and let it simmer for a while, or do you start writing right away? Do you use Pinterest, outlining, or brainstorming in your plotting process, or do you just wing it? Tell us everything!

August 2016 Books Recap

Not gonna lie, there was a HUGE lull in my reading habits between my ages of like 18-22ish. It wasn’t that I hated reading, it was just that I didn’t really give it the time of day. When I was in high school, I read a lot. I had a “reading list” for school, which kept me going and I loved tracking all the books I was reading.

Now, I have an app for that. Goodreads is where it’s at, people. If you’re a reader and like to track what you’re reading, check it out! When I have “incentive”, so to speak, I want to do something more. I have a goal to read 100 books this year, and I’m currently at 38 (but let’s keep in mind that I just started reading “for real” again in May of this year! So that’s about 35 books since May!)

But, I’ve decided to start a monthly book recap. This is where I’ll do a mini-review of every book I read that month. Some months it may be extensive because I can read a lot of books in 30 days. Other months, it might be a smaller list. Just depends on how much time I actually spend reading. So without further ado, here’s my August Books Recap!

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  1. Attachments – Rainbow Rowell (age range 16 and up)
    I’ve only ever read 2 books by Rainbow Rowell.  This one, and Fangirl. Both were incredible. This book drew me in from the first page, and I didn’t put it down til I finished it. (in a day and a half). It focuses on two best friends, Beth & Jennifer, that work in an office. They send emails back and forth daily as a way to “talk” to each other throughout the day. Lincoln is hired to read employees emails to make sure nothing “bad” is getting through the server at their place of employment. 
    Lincoln falls for Beth, based solely on her emails to Jennifer. My heart. Gotta love a love story. 
  2. Catching Jordan – Miranda Kenneally (ages 16 and up)
    This was the first ever book I read by Miranda Kenneally and it was very good. Different, but good. About a tomboy who plays for the high school football team (and is the captain of said team). There’s a love triangle which makes things all sorts-of interesting. I seriously didn’t know which guy she would end up with until the end of the book – and I like it that way! 
  3. It’s Kind of a Funny Story – New Vizinni (ages 13 and up)
    This is the story of a young man who suffers from depression. After a suicide attempt, he is checks himself into a mental hospital. There he meets some very interesting people who help him on his journey. This particular story was like one I’d never read before. It was interesting, and gave me insight into mental illness that I didn’t have before. Very interesting.
  4. For Keeps – Natasha Friend (ages 15 and up) 
    When looking back at my Goodreads, I saw this book listed. I added it here, but when I got down here to do a short review, I could not, for the life of me, remember what it was about. That says something about a book, doesn’t it? While I remember LIKING this book, it didn’t stand out as something that I really enjoyed. This story is about a girl who’s never met her father. When her paternal grandparents come back into town, she’s realizing that her chances of seeing her dad are getting more and more likely. She does…and that’s all I remember. Read it if you’d like. 😉 
  5. Catch a Falling Star – Kim Culbertson (ages 15 and up)
    Oh my goodness. This story, guys. I’m a sucker for fake-girlfriend stories, not gonna lie. Adam Jakes, Hollywood star, asks Carter Moon to pretend to be his girlfriend while he’s filming in the small town she lives in. She agrees, only because her family could use the hefty paycheck that comes along with it. This one was a really good read. It had real depth. 
  6. My Life in Black & White – Natasha Friend (ages 16 & up)
    Lexi was beautiful. Until she was in a car accident and she went through the windshield, leaving her with scars all over her face. Now she doesn’t even want people to look at her. She’s had a falling out with her best friend, and things are just looking bleak in every way. To be honest, I read this book in just a day. It was a quick and pretty easy read, however, it wasn’t my favorite. I felt like Lexi left a little to be desired. Yes, she’s been through a lot, and she has every right to pity herself. But I feel like in some ways, she’s not even living her life. She lets what other people think be the driving force behind her actions (and she covers her face up with a hoodie every day). In other words, I’m glad I read this, but it wasn’t my favorite, by far.
  7. Broken Hearts, Fences & Other Things to Mend – Katie Finn (ages 13 and up)
    This is the first book in the Broken Hearts series by Katie Finn (otherwise known as Morgan Matson). I genuinely liked this book, although it took me almost a week to read it, which is rareAs soon as I was getting toward the end of the book, I ordered the 2nd one off Amazon. This story is about Gemma. At the very beginning, her boyfriend of 2 years breaks up with her, and she’s forced to spend the summer in the Haptoms with her father. Five years earlier, she’d burned a LOT of bridges with her best friend Hallie, while in the Hamptons. So going back isn’t so exciting. This book is full of twists, turns, and unexpected plotlines.
  8. Revenge, Ice Cream, & Other Things Best Served Cold – Katie Finn (ages 13 and up)
    The sequel to Broken Hearts, this book continues the story of Gemma. The sequel was full of MORE twists and turns, and I never knew what was going to happen until the very end! 
  9. Hearts, Fingers, & Other Things to Cross – Katie Finn (ages 13 and up)
    This was NOT a book of love triangles. This book had a love SQUARE. I’m not kidding. There were 3 potential love interests for Gemma. THREE. I’m not kidding. THREE. I seriously had NO idea what was going to happen at the end of this book, but I was genuinely happy – and surprised. It was a great way to end a series of revenge! 
  10. The Fault in Our Stars – John Green (ages 16 and up)
    Well, omigosh. This is the first book I’ve read in a LONG time that made me cry like a little baby. So good. I’m not going to say anything about it because I’m not about to give any spoilers. (FYI! Do not look at the Wikipedia page, it gives SPOILERS! Ask me how I know this!) I bawled like a baby pretty much from halfway through this book until the very end. Do not read if you hate crying. 
  11. Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone – JK Rowling (ages 9 and up)
    I have read halfway through the Harry Potter series before, however I never made it all the way through. When my friend started reading them, I told her I’d be her reading buddy, and now we’re reading them together. These are books that I thought I’d never like. It was fantasy, after all, and fantasy is SO not my thing. But JK Rowling knows how to write a good story, and I can appreciate that. This book is so good! 
  12. Dumplin’ – Julie Murphy (ages 16 and up) 
    Last month, I read Side Effects May Vary by this same author. It was by far NOT my favorite book. I didn’t like the main character, but I loved her guy best friend, so I kept reading. When I discovered Dumplin’, the book intrigued me. It was about a chubby girl (fat), and THAT I can relate with. So I quickly snatched this one up and started reading. It’s, again, not my favorite book, but this one drew me in more. I could understand most of the insecurity issues that the main character, Willowdean has, because I have them, too. 
  13. Harry Potter & the Chambers of Secrets – JK Rowling (ages 9 and up)
    2nd book in the Harry Potter series. Again, I’m unsure of why I like these books. When I was a kid my mom would not let me read these books because she thought they were “bad”. Magic and all that stuff. It’s funny how things change. When my sister was a teenager, Mom let her read them and I said, “Hey! That’s not fair!” And then, of course, I had to read them too! And reading these books a second time make me realize that I really do like them! (Thanks to my friend for wanting to be my reading buddy while we go through these books together!)

**ages suggestions are based on content, language, etc. These are my own, and obviously as a parent/reader, you should always check into this before reading for yourself.

A Novel Idea: 8/30/2016

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As a writer, keeping inspiration going from week to week can be tough. My friend, Kylie, and I, want to change that. The point of A Novel Idea is to get your writing juices flowing even when you don’t feel like writing. We also want it to help you dig deeper into what writing looks like for you and let you share it with the world. We’ll be posting installments weekly, all focused on four things: characters, your novel, you writing process, and writing prompts. Follow the weekly guidelines and post it on your blog, then link up with us! We’d love to hear from you each week.

This week, tell us about the books that make you want to become a better writer. Why do they inspire you? Who wrote them? What genre are they? What is it about them that appeals to you and inspires you?

A Novel Idea: 8/23/2016

As a writer, keeping inspiration going from week to week can be tough. My friend, Kylie and I, want to change that. The point of A Novel Idea is to get your writing juices flowing even when you don’t feel like writing. We also want it to help you dig deeper into what writing looks like for you and let you share it with the world. We’ll be posting installments weekly, all focused on four things: characters, your novel, you writing process, and writing prompts. Follow the weekly guidelines and post it on your blog, then link up with us! We’d love to hear from you each week.

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This week, follow this writing prompt as a starting point and see what happens. Have fun with it!

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Call Me Mack – In 3 Words

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This week’s topic for A Novel Idea is: This week, describe your novel in three words. Get creative. Tell us as much about your story as you can in those 3 little (or big!) words.

book cover made by Kylie over at http://www.furtherupfurtherin.net

So. Without further ado, Call Me Mack in 3 words! 

Separation

At the very beginning of Call Me Mack, her parents – who have been married for 18 years, decide they are going to separate. It’s a temporary situation, according to both of them, but Mack feels differently. She’s not ready for her parents to get a divorce, but she also doesn’t see them getting back together, either.

Siblings

Mack has 3 siblings. Langley is her twin sister – older by 3 minutes, and never lets Mack forget it. She also has a 3 year old brother, Leland, and a one-month old sister, Lynlee. 
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Surprise

This is more for myself than for anyone else. Although, maybe someday when you read Call Me Mack, you’ll be surprised too! The surprise is…
I have absolutely no idea who Mack’s love interest is. Two great men – her best friend, Grant, and her long-time crush, Nik. 
Who will it be? No one knows.

Beautiful People: August Edition

  1. Give a brief overview of their looks. (Include a photo if you want!)
    Long, blonde hair, blue eyes, pale skin covered in tattoos, tall and slender.
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  2. Share a snippet that involves description of their appearance.
    “Most people tell me I’d be beautiful. That is, if I didn’t cover my body with tattoos. It hurts. Oh yeah, you’re a blonde-haired, blue-eyed beauty, but you’ve got a bunch of ugly tattoos so that makes you ugly. I guess I just don’t care. I don’t care what they think. My body is my body. Not theirs. ‘You’ve got a pretty face’. That’s what a lot of people tell fat people too…Fat, skinny, tall, short, tattooed or not…you’re not your body.”
  3. What is the first thing people might notice about them?
    Definitely her tattoos. She’s got a whole bunch of them! 
  4. What are their unique features? (Ex: freckles, big ears, birthmark, scars, etc.)
    Mack has a birthmark on her leg upper arm in the shape of a heart, which is pretty much why it’s ironic that she wears her heart on her sleeve. 
  5. How tall are they? What is their build (Ex: stocky, slender, petite, etc.)
    5’10”. Tall and slender.
  6. What is their posture like? How do they usually carry themselves?
    Has great posture and always stands tall.
  7. Your character has been seen on a “lazy day” (free from usual routine/expectations): what are they wearing and how do they look?
    Her hair is in a messy bun, and she’s wearing a loose-fitting tank top, sweatpants, and a pair of sneakers.
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  8. Do they wear glasses, accessories, or jewelry on a regular basis? Do they have any article of clothing or accessory that could be considered their trademark?
    She almost always wears jeans and a t-shirt. She doesn’t like to stand out in the crowd so she feels this attire makes her blend in.
  9. Have they ever been bullied or shamed because of their looks? Explain!
    She’s still in high school – a junior – so a bunch of kids look at her weird (or make snide remarks behind her back) about her tattoos. But nothing she can’t take.
  10. Are they happy with how they look? If they could change anything about their appearance, what would it be?
    She’s mostly happy with how she looks, but the truth is… a lot of the time, she feels too tall. While most girls would KILL to be her height, she feels like she towers over most everyone.

A Novel Idea: 8/16/2016

As a writer, keeping inspiration going from week to week can be tough. My friend, Kylie and I, want to change that. The point of A Novel Idea is to get your writing juices flowing even when you don’t feel like writing. We also want it to help you dig deeper into what writing looks like for you and let you share it with the world. We’ll be posting installments weekly, all focused on four things: characters, your novel, you writing process, and writing prompts. Follow the weekly guidelines and post it on your blog, then link up with us! We’d love to hear from you each week.

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This week, describe your novel in three words. Get creative. Tell us as much about your story as you can in those 3 little (or big!) words.

Linky for Tuesday’s ANI:

A Novel Idea: Mack Facts

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This week’s A Novel Idea prompt is: make a list of 20 things about your character. They can be as simple or unique as you want, but hopefully it will help you learn at least something new about your character and their backstory.

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  1. Her full name is Mackinley Pearl Davenport. (She hates it. Hence, Mack).
  2. She’s 17, and a junior in high school. She hates school and doesn’t think college is in her future, but what does she know? She’s only 17! Why do teenagers have to make such difficult life decisions? 
  3. Has a twin sister named Langley Pearl Davenport. (born 3 minutes before Mack and never lets Mack forget it).
  4. Has 3 tattoos on each arms. Her parents figure there could be worse things she could be doing, so as long as she has the money to do it, they give their permission for her to get them.
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    she wants a full sleeve eventually

  5. Mack’s parents have been married for almost 18 years, since they found out that they were pregnant with twins in high school. Their relationship is a rocky one, but have withstood everything for this long. However, toward the beginning of the book they decide to separate. (Not divorce, but Mack and Lang know that it’s coming soon). 
  6. Mack & Langley have 2 younger siblings, Leland & Lynlee. Leland is 3, and Lynlee is 4 weeks old. Which makes the whole separation of their parents thing even harder on her.
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    these two make mack’s life a little brighter.

  7. Lang(ley) is Mack’s best friend, through everything. Despite how different they are, they never would be able to live without each other. Which makes things especially hard when their parents decide to separate and their dad moves an hour away. Neither of them are sure where they “belong” at that point. 
  8. Favorites foods are pizza and ice cream. But in order to eat them as much as she wants to, she has to go for runs in the morning (otherwise she’d be as big as a house). She hates that Lang has a higher metabolism and can eat whatever she wants, whenever she wants. 
  9. COFFEE is her beverage of choice. All the time. Every day. Multiple times, despite her mom warning her about caffeine addiction. There are worse things…
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    mmm…coffee

  10. Mack works at a restaurant called The Pirate Ship. The wait-staff dress in pirate getup, and have to say “arghhh” as much as they can during a conversation. She hates working there, but it’s a job. 
  11. Mack has had a crush on Nik Johnson since she was 5, and the Johnsons moved in next door. Dark hair, hazel eyes, killer smile. He barely knows she exists but a girl can dream.
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    Well hello there, nik johnson

  12. Mack’s favorite movie is A Walk To Remember. While she wouldn’t want everyone to know it, she’s kind-of a sucker for a good chick flick. This movie makes her cry like a baby. 
  13. Most people think that Mack is tough (mostly because she has tattoos), but she’s really a big softy. She shies away from any sort-of confrontation. Which is why, when her parents fight, you’ll find her up in her room, music blasting, so that she can’t hear it.
  14. She wants to travel the world. The whole thing. She loves the parts of the USA she’s seen, but she wants – needs – to see more of it. 
  15. Oh, and then there’s Grant Hagelin. Other than Lang, he’s her best friend. They’ve only known each other 4 years, but hit it off right away. Between Grant and Lang, they keep Mack sane. Otherwise, she’d be all over the place.
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    because grant fits him

  16. Mack would rather read a book than watch tv. She loves classics more than anything. To Kill a Mockingbird is her favorite, as well as Pride & Prejudice.
  17. She’s obsessed with Instagram, and posts at least one picture a day. Mack has over 5 thousand followers on her page, too! She posts mostly landscapes, food, or something of the sort. Very rarely, she’ll even post a selfie.
  18. She writes in a journal, but no one knows about it. It’s not that she’s embarrassed, it’s just that she doesn’t want anyone to find it. If they don’t know about it, they won’t find it. Logic. 
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  19. Mack is left-handed. Yet another way that she and Langley are exact opposites, Lang is right-handed.
  20. Has a cat named Muffin. Don’t judge her – Mack named Muffin when she was only 10, and was obsessed with blueberry muffins at the time. 
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Be sure to link up with us by going here!