Click the picture to find out what those three reasons are. 🙂
What Is Kicking Your Butt Right Now?
My brain is overwhelming at the moment. It fills my heads with thoughts that keep me up at night. Gives me ideas when I’m working on something else. Distracts me from the work I want to do. Reminds me to do work after I decide it’s time to take a break.
My brain is being a real jerk.
I try to shut it up with watching movies. Stepping away from my projects for a little bit, thinking maybe that’s why my brain is being overwhelmed. I get some piece for a short amount of time… but then it goes back to guilting me that I’m not being productive. I try to eat – you need to work. I try to sleep – you need to work. I go for a walk – you need to work. I’m on vacation – you need to work.
Suffice to say… I’m not impressed with how my brain is handling life right now. -.-‘
Something You Want To Improve In Your Life
I’ve always had issues with self-confidence, which may be a reason why I love writing so much. It helps me escape from the real world, allowing me to write my real self in fiction. A lot of my characters aren’t afraid to speak their mind or be confident in their choices –
the opposite of me. Whenever I make a choice I start panicking right away that I did the wrong thing. Whenever I say something I start panicking about if I upset them.
Life – I believe – would be so much easier if I just stopped caring about what others thought about me. If I just woke up one day and said, “Today, I’m going to be a honey badger.”
Inside I’m confident. The voice you’re hearing on this blog is confident… but in real like on the daily I’m not. I’m quiet. I’m forgotten about. I don’t speak my mind. When I do speak I sputter or stutter out my words. I’m like Sadness from Pixar’s Inside Out at the start of the movie… when I honestly feel like Joy on the inside.
So yeah… confidence is something I need to improve on in my life. I think I’ll be happier for it.
Word Image Search
Today’s challenge is: think of a word and search for it using Google Images. Writing something inspired by the 11th Image.
The word I chose was tranquillity. The 11th image was:
I stood at the end of the board walk. The warm night air off the water stuck to my skin. I pulled my housecoat closer as the fluffy lime material tickled my skin. The smell of salt danced up my nose making me close my eyes and take a slower, deeper breath. The sound of waves lapped around me, slapping up onto my feet covered in white sand.
I open my eyes to see glass reflecting cotton of blues, pinks, and greys. The sky like candy pastels as I run my hand through my hair knocking away the fading electric blue strands.
I’m glad I came out here. I needed a break.
There came a knock from behind me. I turned around, feeling my frustration return. Someone was at my door and I had a good idea as to who it was.
Snapping my fingers the imaged faded, leaving me standing in the middle of the dark room. Photographs plastered the back wall caught the light through the crack in the drawn blinds when a car drove through the alleyway below. I could hear the neighbours shouting across the way as there came another knock on my front door.
The knocking this time was louder.
Secretly I had hoped he had left after thinking I wasn’t in.
“Jay!” it was Royce, as I had expected. “Jaya, open the fracking door – we need to talk!”
I smirked after hearing him use the word I commonly used to replace the oh so boring swears of this century. Maybe there was hope for Officer Bass after all.
Closing the door to my room and making sure the lock was latched, I made my way down the hallway covered in tacky floral print to the living room. I stood facing the entrance and with a snap of my fingers the front latch unlocked. He knocked again, obviously not noticing what I had done.
“It’s open – you Neanderthal,” I called, crossing my arms under my chest as he opened the door.
“It was locked – I checked,” Royce growled, closing the door. A thick manila folder was tucked under his right pit.
“Hope you check crime scenes better,” I smirked, noticing a hazel glare over his sunglasses, a habit I hadn’t yet been able to make him curb. “So, what brings yah to my lair this late?”
He took off his shoes, welcoming himself in like he had half a dozen times, collapsing in his usual spot in the corner of my lumpy black futon. Patches jumped up onto the back, settling near Royce as he gave her a hesitant pat. After they were both settled he set down the folder on my coffee table still covered with takeout containers.
“We found another body,” Royce muttered, moving to lean his elbows onto his knees after firmly planting his feet on the floor. He was hunched over in deep thought as I caught him give me a glance. “I know you’re off… since…”
He paused, taking off his sunglasses to set them atop the folder. He took a deep breath, rubbing the bridge of his nose. Patches was rubbing up against his back now for attention that he wasn’t going to give. I knew he blamed himself for what had happened but it wasn’t his fault. I wish I could have told him I was fine. I wanted to tell him that that Jinn couldn’t have killed me with an injury like that… but I couldn’t. He couldn’t know what I was. I couldn’t tell him or I’d be sent back to the bottle for who knows how long.
“Hey, Bass…” my voice was low but it reached his ears when he turned to give me a smirk at hearing his nickname, “you’re my partner – tell me what you need me to do.”
Ha…. well that was unexpected… didn’t think Jaya would make a comeback. If you don’t remember Jaya – she was a free genie I wrote about a while back [Her First Appearance Is Here]. Maybe my mind is telling me something… XD
The Lesson You Learnt The Hard Way
Now, I’ve written about how hard it is to be a writer before in the past blog post Writing Is Hard… but today I am supposed to talk about a lesson that I learned the hard way.
Writing isn’t actually the hardest part of being a writer. Writing is a challenge. Writing makes you pull out your hair and scream to the sky asking for help from your ancestors to give you strength to continue on… but then you go back to writing because we’re all masochists and love causing ourselves pain…
Writing makes us over think, over analyze and lose sleep over the tiniest of pointless details but that is writing. Writing is hard.
I knew that from years of writing. I learnt that through writing and editing my book but that pain… that suffering doesn’t compare to publishing.
With writing you have control over your project. You know the outcome of the story. You understand your characters, setting, plot…
What you can’t predict is what will happen when you are finished with your work. You think – at least this was what my previous naive self thought – I publish my work online and that’s that. It will take care of itself. People will see my work, love it or hate it and
HA! What a fool I was!
Publishing feels amazing at first because your story is done. What you don’t consider is the work that comes after your book is done. It doesn’t matter if you’re with a publisher or your work is self-published, there’s still a lot of work to be done.
You now have to build your brand, you readership, manage your sales, find places to sell your work, find ways to sell your work… get/register your ISBNs with your country and send your work to your country’s Legal Library (self-publishing legal stuff for a Canadian at least).
Instead of reading about sentence structure and character development you’ve replaced that with Marketing 101 and Guru Publishing Posts. You need to learn to talk to people and talk about your book… which is a nightmare for a introvert. But come hell or high water you do what you can to get your book out there. Not because you want to but because you owe your work the right to be read. You owe your potential readers the right to find your work.
AND when a reader tells you that they love the story or they can’t wait for the next book, you realize it’s all worth it. That those nights staring at the ceiling trying to figure out who you need to email, call, ‘run into’ the next morning was all worth it. That those hours you spent reading blogs on marketing and searching for sites to sell your work wasn’t a waste of time. One by one you’ll grow your readers and the more you write/publish – you hope it’ll get easier. 🙂
That’s the hard lesson I recently learnt… but after all this hard work I’m still wanting to be a writer. As much as it keeps me up at night and forces me to learn about something I was never quite good at (marketing) I still can’t see myself doing anything else. So, if that’s not a sign I’m doing what I love… I don’t know what is. 🙂
Fudgel is the act of appearing to do work when really you aren’t doing anything at all. I think many of us can agree… this is the perfect word for a Friday since no one really wants to do anything before the weekend.
Ways to uses fudgel in a sentence:
All I did was fudgel all day long.
The boss noticed his new employee fudgeling at his desk.
Fudgel Fudgeling Fudgeler
WARNING: Before reading this I would like to let you know that this has not gone through the editing process. This may change when going through the final review of the book before publishing. May edit this later when I’ve gotten some sleep. With that said, I really like this part of the book and I hope you will enjoy it. 🙂
Walking down the uneven wooden steps leading down to the rocky shore, Liora made her way to the rushing white water. The current was strong. No doubt it was powerful enough to wash away a tree yet alone a person with no issues.
It was hard to keep her balance on the uneven ground but after getting her footing flat atop two rocks she crossed her arms, taking a breath to admire the view. The dam was no longer in one piece. The center of the large wall had collapsed. A pile of uneven pieces were along upper level of the shoreline. There were no fishermen on the plateaus. The only people that seemed to be part of the village were those behind her carrying on their days.
Liora spun around to see the white haired girl two paces away. Her lavender eyes were wide, her jaw a jar.
“Me?” Liora was unsure why the girl sounded so shocked.
“You can’t be here… you can’t be real… you – you’re a dream,” the girl stuttered.
“I assure you I’m as real as you are… although I should be the one surprised since I saw you in my dream,” Liora stated, noticing the girl’s light brow wince. “Then again… I’m starting to get used to strange things in my dreams… since I’m a seer.”
“Seer?” the girl’s face scrunched at the word.
“A northern word for – you know what never mind… I’m here to help you,” Liora waved her hand before taking a step towards the girl who took a step back.
“Help me? I don’t even know who you are,” she snipped, looking around again, “you shouldn’t even be here… yo…you need to leave. Now.”
“Hey, I just got here. I’m here ’cause you asked me for help,” Liora stated. The girl shook her head.
“Again, I don’t know what you’re talking about. I didn’t ask for help. I don’t know who you are. You have to leave now before they find out you’re here!” the girl hurried towards Liora, turning her around before pushing on her back towards the other set of stairs leading to the bridge which led back to the forest.
“No, wait!” Liora resisted.
“Yes, time,” Liora spun to the side, watching the girl stumble forward catching herself as she gave Liora a glare. “What’s your name? Who are they? Why is there no time?”
“Do you always ask questions at inconvenient moments or are you being difficult because you just don’t like taking orders?” the white haired girl snipped, crossing her arms.
“That’s not answering my questions,” Liora glared.
They stood there for a moment in silence. The strange girl was taller than Liora had first expected her to be. Almost half a head taller than she was.
“Emery,” she sighed, looking to the side, “my name’s Emery.”
“See, now was that really that hard?” Liora asked, giving a smirk. “I’m Liora – but people call me Li.”
“Well, Liora, as much as I’d love to discuss in full and complete detail as to why you’ve decided to come here, you need to le–“
There came a rumbling of thunder as Liora turned in the direction of the dam. The dam was gone the water was low, there was no risk of the flood she had dreamed of. The sky was clear and there didn’t look to be a storm rolling over the mountains.
“Damn it…” Emery leapt, grabbing Liora’s hand. “They know you’re here– if they find you.”
“They’ll kill me?” Liora asked, watching the girl peer back.
“If you’re lucky!” Emery pulled Liora up the steps back towards the bridge leading into the city from the forest.
Halfway up, Emery halted, moving down one step at spotting who stood above them. There were two figures dressed in robes. They had been the people from her dream.
There was a woman on the left whose blonde hair escape the hood of her robe. Her eyes were shadowed but there was a smile on her lips that made Liora’s skin crawl. Beside the woman was a man, who chose not to hide his face from them. His brown eyes and messy hair reminded her of Pellar – though this man was better dress sharing a similar unnerving smile.
“Em, always trying to be the hero,” the woman said, while wagging her finger. Her black eyes were dark night as they peered down from the steps above.
“Pointless, pointless,” the man gave a full toothed grin.
Emery let go of Liora’s hand before glancing back. There was something in her lavender eyes that made Liora’s stomach flip.
“Run!” Emery shouted, charging the two adults before them as Liora tore passed.
The figures toppled to the ground as Emery lay on top of them, keeping them pinned. Liora took the steps two by two and when at the top she looked back down.
Emery was gone. The two figures were starting to stand as Liora bolted for the bridge. Liora wanted to turn back and question them but she couldn’t stop herself from running. Emery had wanted her to run and that’s what she was going to do.
Just as she reached the other side of the bridge her body shook as she toppled backwards onto her back. What had she hit?
There was no wall. There was nothing before her.
Standing, Liora put out her hand as she watched the air ripple like water before her. There was something there but she didn’t know what it was. It was like the air had turned solid… but that wasn’t possible. Such a phenomenon couldn’t exist. Unless…
“We won’t let you leave girl,” the man hissed.
Liora clenched her fists before turning to face the two standing, now in the middle of the bridge. She couldn’t run passed them. There was no other way around them either.
“Where’s Emery‽” Liora growled, taking a step towards them. “Where is she‽”
“Safe, I assure you,” the woman muttered, lifting a hand.
“And me… what are you going to do to me?” Liora’s voice wavered, as she forced down the tears welling up in the corner of her eyes. Her nails dug into her palms distracting her from the fear and worry that bombarded her mind.
“Such a tone – you’re going to be our guest. It’s been a while since we’ve had one. We’ve wanted some entertainment for a while now,” the woman licked her teeth like a snake tasting the air.
Entertainment? Liora’s stomach churned at the sweetness in the woman’s voice. The way she had said it made Liora’s skin crawl and hair stand on end.
“I’ll leave. You don’t have to do anything,” Liora bartered.
The two strangers laughed.
“Nonsense, you’re one of us now,” they looked at each other, smiling ear to ear, “you will never leave.”
Liora turned back to the translucent wall, hitting her hands against it in hopes it would break open. Upon her second hit she heard a snapping of fingers from behind as the world faded to black.
Today we explore the beautiful word – Meraki [may-rah-kee]. It means to do something with your soul , creativity, or love. It also means when you put something of yourself into what you do. This could be your passion for music, your desire for drawing, or your love for writing. Anything where you leave a piece of your soul/self in your work. This word I find is peaceful and fun to say. Although the word is Greek… I can’t help but think of how similar it sounds to Japanese.
Anywho… as meraki is a difficult word to use in a sentence I’ll leave some links to where you can read on how to use it in a sentence and determine the proper use… my best attempt would be:
My meraki is in everything I write.
But again, not quite sure if that is correct since… well there isn’t a lot of people who actually use this word in a sentence.
Positive Word a Day – How to Use the Word
Manuelluz – Exploring the word deeper
A Grey Eyed Girl – The Meaning of Meraki
Hope these help you. 🙂
For more interesting words check out my Old Word Fridays.
Sometimes when you have written/ published something you need to remind yourself that Rome wasn’t built in a day. Even though you’ve completed your book, published it, and have a readership interested in it you’re not going to sell a million copies overnight. That is an unrealistic goal. You should be happy if your book is selling. You should be happy that people have taken interest in your work but instead you’re overwhelmed – dare I say… apathetic.
With hearing stories, reading blog posts, or articles on people going viral with their writing it’s hard to accept that what you’ve done is good. Actually, before you continue reading this give yourself a pat on the back because you deserve it. You’ve gotten this far and be proud of what you’ve achieved. Not many have gotten to the place you are. Writing isn’t as easy as everyone thinks.
Now let’s continue.
The reason you may be so apathetic to what you’ve done is due to how society perceives achievement. Like in middle school or high school popularity in writing is what we writers view as success. Maze Runner, Game of Thrones, Twilight, Harry Potter, Divergent, and Hunger Games have made wanting to be a writer popular and some part of us wouldn’t mind having our characters become the next Thomas or Katniss.
But, not every piece of writing is going to be popular right away. Some times the best things in the world take time. Shakespeare took a lifetime to become one of the greatest writers of history. Da Vinci took years… heck centuries for his talents to be recognized. Stoner, Kafka, Catch-22 and other now popular books took years to be recognized (more books listed HERE). Even the popular books mentioned in the paragraph above weren’t main stream until later one in their careers – I’m talking about you GoT (Book 1 published 1996).
So, why are you apathetic towards the hard work you’ve done? Why do you perceive the books you’ve sold as a failure?
Firstly, lets look at the word failure. To fail is to not be successful and so in that sense if your goal was to have people read your book and you have a person or people reading your book then you are not a failure. An epic book fail would mean not getting any interest in your book. In all manner of the word your book is not a failure. If your book made 10 sales it wouldn’t be a failure. If your book made 1 sale is wouldn’t be a failure because there is one person in this world reading your book. One person is reading a story that wouldn’t have existed if you hadn’t written it. Therefore as long as you have made more than zero sales your book is not a failure! And hey, if you haven’t gotten anyone reading your book you didn’t fail. You learned something and you take what you’ve learned to make something better or improve upon what you have already made. We all fail at one point but what we choose to do with that failure is what really shows what type of person you are. Take this experience and learn from it – don’t let it destroy your passion or your confidence.
Eventually your book will grow a larger readership – if you continue writing and bringing attention to it. We all have to start somewhere but in the world of social media where we get instant results it’s hard to remind yourself that what you’re doing may take time. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Most books aren’t written in an afternoon. Most dreams do take a lifetime. Not everything is instant… not everything happens at once. This is what you’ll have to keep reminding yourself of when you look at your book. That in time its popularity may grow. That its message will be shared.
Honestly, as much as you may like the thought of your book becoming the next best-seller that shouldn’t be the reason and probably isn’t the reason you wrote this book in the first place. This is a story you wanted to share. These are topics, characters, ideas you wanted the world to read about. You should write for you and publish for you – not anyone else.
So, calm down and take a breath. Admire the work that you have done and the beautiful piece of writing you’ve created. You need to remember why you wrote that book and wanted to share it with the world. It’s a story you love and in time there will be like-minded people who will love it too.
But at the moment you have to remember – it takes time.