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Prophecy Six Blog

Sharing My Unedited Writing Experiences & Life Experiences.

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THINKING THURSDAYS

What is your writing Kryptonite?

Hello Internet Friends,

This week we are talking about writing Kryptonite and for those that don’t know what that is… basically what is your writing weakness. I was trying to be all smart with wanting to do a comparison between my green kryptonite and my red kryptonite but for the sake of my readers who aren’t Superman fans… I will just focus on my weakness (green kryptonite).

With that said, my writing weakness is the internet.

The internet can be useful with research but man it ruins any motivation I have to write. I may start off wanting to research about medical practices of the medieval age (or lack there of) and eight hours later be watching YouTube videos of cats saying ‘no’. The internet is not only the place I do research but also where I sell my books and connect with my readership. So, as much as I want to disconnect I am tied to it.

The worst part – I know I should be doing something else but I get distracted by so many people online or information online that I never get back to my intended purpose for opening up my browser in the first place. I know I’m not alone with this problem. Many of you have told me that the internet hinders your writing drive.

What is your writing krytonite? Is it the internet or something else? Let me know in the comment section down below, and until next time remember to stay safe, be creative, and as always toodles!! ^.^

Do What You Can’t – Response

One thing I love about Casey Neistat is he is a creator that doesn’t let anything stand in his way. He makes a living out of doing amazing things and filming it. I came across Casey’s videos a year ago, and although I had seen his work through the years I never really took a chance to watch his vlogs or other videos until last year when I subscribed to his channel.

When it comes to the channels I subscribe too I can be selective. My main qualifiers for channels are:

  1. Does it educate me in some way?
  2. Does it make me think?
  3. Does it make me laugh?
  4. Does it help me be creative?

All 89 channels I am currently subscribe to answer yes, but for Casey – his channel checks off all four. He talks about life, his struggles and accomplishments. He captures humanity in a way that shows you that the world isn’t as dark as others may make it out being, but when something terrible happens he isn’t one to sugar coat it. Yes, he can be bias about things – but humans are bias creatures and our opinions sometimes slip into places they shouldn’t.

This week Casey’s video hit me in a way his other videos didn’t. His topic was ‘Do What You Can’t’. He talks about how if he listened to all the people that told him he couldn’t move to New York, couldn’t never have a show because of his looks, or be unable to make a living in film because he never went to school that he wouldn’t be where he is now. He did what people told him he couldn’t do and he goes onto talk about others – specifically the YouTube community – who make a living ‘doing what they can’t’.

So, to add to the doing what you can’t conversation that Casey started I want to through my hat in the ring with my story.

Growing up I had a lot of people tell me I couldn’t do things. I had a babysitter tell me that I would never be a strong swimmer which pushed me to getting my life guarding certification and swimming across the lake at my parent’s cottage without assistance one summer. I was told I was never going to last high school by some of my teachers, which not only pushed me to graduate high school with honours but go onto become a Ontario Certified teacher. There were two teachers – I will not name – that told me I would never become a author because there were better writers out there and the competition for publication was too high. Although they aren’t wrong about the second part – which I did get offers from publishers for my work that I chose to turn down – they didn’t know about e-books at the time or that self-publishing would be so popular.

Everyone has been told they can’t do something because of some reason or another in their life but Casey proves that you don’t have to listen. You can choose to listen to those that doubt your strength or you can push through and show those who doubted you what you are capable of. Sure, it won’t be easy. Heck surpassing all the doubters in my life wasn’t easy, but I have something to show for it. I am a strong swimmer. I am smart enough to graduate high school and university. I am skilled enough to publish not one but two books.

So, in the words of Casey Neistat ‘Do What You Can’t’ and show the world who they underestimated.

Until next time remember to stay safe, be creative, and as always toodles! ^.^

Let’s Talk About Empathy, Transgender Rights, and Bathrooms

This week’s Thinking Thursday is going to get a little political… okay that’s a lie. It is going to get really political but I have held this in for too long and now I believe this is the best time to say something. This week we are going to explore empathy, transgender rights, and bathrooms. Why?

Simply put:

This is my blog and I do what I want.

Long answer:

The world at the moment needs more voices speaking out about injustices and although I may not be part of the communities being persecuted I try to empathize with their situation and figure out a way to help.

This post was brought to you by Trump’s actions towards the LGBTQ community, lifting the the protection act that forced schools to allow transgender students to use the bathrooms that matched their gender. I used the words forced, because many of the schools where this act was set were likely going to ignore the needs of these students or force these students into difficult situations that made them feel unsafe.

Now, the reason for Trump’s administration lifting this act is stupid. Their biggest fear is that if this act in put in place sexual offenders will say they are trans to gain access to the restrooms to harm women. Right there, is a huge issue, actually several issues.

  1. Not all sexual offenders are men.
  2. Trans-individuals are more likely to be assaulted in restrooms.
  3. If someone wants to sexually assault someone a law isn’t going to stand in their way.

What this act is doing is forcing trans-individuals back into hiding and limiting their rights as human beings. If you don’t allow someone to use a restroom in a public space that means you are limiting their life and experiences. You are also targeting cis-individuals that don’t fit within gender norms. Women with more muscle, who are taller, may have thinner hair, or facial hair may be targeted. Men who are smaller, dress more feminine, or have a lack of facial hair may be targeted for not fitting in.

Students who are beginning to find themselves are forced to use facilities that don’t make them feel safe, which should be the number one concern of a school.

I have never had a problem with anyone using a bathroom. When I go to the bathroom the last thing that crosses my mind is ‘how is the person going to the bathroom right beside me’ or ‘is the person beside me going to hurt me?’. I don’t care! I’m too preoccupied with my own bodily functions to be concerned about anyone else.

Plus there are already laws in place to protect people in bathrooms, which I hate to say, don’t stop those who want to break them. Forcing a group of people into dangerous situations because you think there’s a problem – that doesn’t have any statistical evidence to support – doesn’t help but instead harms people. This kind of thinking makes you a closed minded person, who needs to realize the world is filled with a diverse spectrum of genders, races, beliefs, and ideas.

I am cis, white, and woman. I have had the privilege of not having to go through the challenges those within the LGBTQ community do. I don’t have to face the difficulties of people not accepting me or the loss of friend/family because they don’t understand me. I know I will never have to face these challenges head-on but I also know that I can’t ignore them either. I educate myself about the issues facing LGBTQ youth. I use my writing and the information I’ve learnt to try and shed light on issues facing the world today. I show empathy and explore opinions that are not my own because I believe everyone should have the same rights no matter what. #TRANSRIGHTSAREHUMANRIGHTS

All I ask from you is for you to try and see this situation through another person’s eyes.

Educate yourself.

To get started I’ve put two of my favourite YouTube channels down below. You’re welcome to start a discussion in the comments, as I love to hear what my readers have to say. Until next time remember to stay safe, be creative, and as always toodles! ^.^

 

Does a big ego help or hinder writers?

This week’s question is: does a big ego help or hinder writers?

I usually stay neutral with questions like this but today I’m going to choose a side. That side is, I believe it hinders a writer.

Now, to understand this question we need to know what an ego is. According to the grandmaster of search engines, Google describes ego as:

ego

I have a mild ego. One that has enough self-esteem to know I’m worthy of the life I have, and a desire to strive for something better but I don’t think I’m the “greatest” person in the world that can be the only person that can make the world “amazing” and everyone should listen to me. In other words I’m not a narcissistic Cheeto but an average human being.

This average view of myself helps me stay neutral when it comes to judging my writing, and I also don’t raise myself up on a pedestal to preach how great I am to the masses… I think the world has enough of that at the moment. I think having a average ego helps me as a writer because I don’t belittle others striving towards their goals. If anything I’m more willing to help where I can and share my experiences.

There is a downside to having an average ego though…

I, at times, don’t know my worth, which allows others to take advantage of me. Someone with a large ego is more likely to know their worth… maybe even surpass their worth because of their view of their own self-importance. This could help them with getting noticed but can also hinder them with burning bridges.

The best authors, in my opinion, are those that are average egos.

They release their worth and they use it to better others. J.K. Rowling – yes, I use her a lot for examples – is the perfect fit for this example. She knows what it is like to be at the bottom of the income ladder. When she became famous for her series she didn’t let that fame go to her head, and instead used the money that she had and influence that she gained to better others around her. You could say the same about Bill Gates. He knows how powerful he is and he is using that power to help others not help himself.

I think someone with a high ego wouldn’t do well within the writing community. Okay, maybe at first… but other time their inflated sense of self-importance and arrogance towards those around them may cause their popularity to fade.

So, as much as a big ego goes it may help a writer in the short term but hinder them in the long term.

What do you think? Do you think a big ego hurts a writer or helps them? Put your answer in the comment section down below, I love hearing your answers. Until next time remember to stay safe, be creative, and as always Toodles! ^.^

What are common traps for aspiring writers?

 

The most common traps for aspiring authors that come to my mind are three things:

  1. If I write it they will come.
  2. Everyone will love my book.
  3. No one will want my book, so what’s the point.

These are the three I’ve faced and the three I believe I’ve gotten past since completing my second book. When you are new to the writing game there is very little guidance and most of the work you have to be willing to do.

If I write it they will come – is such a common trap.

The reason for this is due to most aspiring writers approaching their writing from the wrong angle. You are looking at it from a readers standpoint not a writers stand point. As a reader you found a book on a shelf that you liked and in a sense that author did make it and attracted you to the work. But, new writers don’t see the middle part.

Authors spend just as much time figuring out ways to attract the reader to their book as they do writing it. They didn’t just make the book and wait for people to find it, most authors – at least the successful ones – had a plan to get people to read their books through marketing it or getting out there to show their face at certain events. I am still learning this part and trying to figure out a way to reach the people I know would enjoy my books. Being an author is equal parts marketing to equal parts writing. At least that’s what I have found.

This follows with – everyone will love my book.

A very unrealistic point of view. You love your book because you wrote it. You love your book because you created the story and put in the hours making it. Just because you love your work doesn’t mean everyone will love it. Not everyone reads the same thing.

For example: I love writing fantasy but I don’t enjoy reading them. I love historical non-fiction and memoirs mostly… that is when I find time to read.

You have to approach writing realistically and with some idea who you want to market your book to. Age, gender, location, interests… etc., these are all things to consider when thinking of who your reader is going to be and who may love your book.

The same goes with – no one will want my book, so what’s the point.

Just like not everyone will love your book, not everyone is going to hate it either. You wrote a book or short story or poem that you needed to write. Something inside you called to you and said, the world needs this. That same voice is the reason why there will be people who will love your writing. Someone out there needs what you’ve written, and you may never meet them but they are there. The world is a big place with 7 billion people and there will be those that will not like your work but there will be just as many who will love it. You can’t be afraid of those few for the possible many that will embrace your creation.

So, in conclusion:

Always think of ways to engage your potential readers, (maybe start a blog like I did), or become part of a writing guild in your community to learn and get to know other creators.

Not everyone is going to love your creation as much as you will. It is your baby and in that sense you see it through rose coloured glasses. Get someone you trust to review your work and see if there are places where you can make your piece stronger. Also never be afraid of criticism; take it as a chance to grow.

At the same time, not everyone is going to hate what you create. Explore places where those that might enjoy your work may be hanging out either online or in the real world. Try sharing your talents in small ways to build your confidence and maybe your following. Who knows? Your work may touch more people than you could have imagined.

Until next time remember to stay safe, be creative, and as always toodles! ^.^

 

 

Does writing energize or exhaust you?

Hello Everyone!

For whatever reason my new save didn’t take and all you were able to see was ‘do a recording’. So, in case this was a technical error I will have to resort back to typing for the time being until I figure out what the problem with my recorder is.

Now, this week’s question is: Does writing energize or exhaust you?

Simple answer:

It depends.

More complicated answer:

It depends on what I am writing that could cause the difference in my energy levels. When I write something I’m passionate about like my book series or short stories I get a boost of energy. This is likely due to the increase of adrenaline I get from being excited about working on a project I’m passionate about.

If I am writing something more technical that requires more research and time, or it is a work project I have to do that I have no desire to work on my energy level decreases leaving me exhausted. I will complete the project but I will likely be bored during its completion process.

Most of the time when I write though I am doing it for my own enjoyment and not for work. In that sense the majority of the time I am energized when I’m writing. Like at the moment, as I am writing this blog post, I am energized because:

  1. I have adrenaline running through my system from the excitement of writing something to share with you.
  2. I have oxytocin running through my veins because of the possible human interaction I will have with all of you who read this, (and for those that don’t know oxytocin is the hormone responsible for that happy feeling you get from a hug or from getting a like on Facebook – this is also why writing can become an addiction).

With the combination of these two coursing through my veins it is hard to not be energized when writing. I’m excited to hear from you about what writing does to you. Let me know in the comment section down below. Until next time remember to stay safe, be creative, and as always toodles!

 

 

Where do I get my ideas?

Hello World Out There World!

Today’s Thinking Thursday I’m focusing on a question that I get on a regular basis.

Where do I get my ideas?

When it comes to growing my ideas for my books or short stories I know many of you expect me to say something along the lines of, “It came to me in a dream” or “Some television show inspired me to write this.”

The truth is… it is both of those and more.

I could be walking down the street and an idea pops into my head… usually in a ‘what if’ sort of question. I could be eating lunch, listening to a song I never heard before, talking to my peers, standing in my shower, sitting on the bus, volunteering at the ARTS Project… be anywhere and doing anything when an idea pops into my head.

imaginary.pngI consider myself lucky. My parents (especially my mother) made sure to embrace and
grow my creative side. When I was a kid I had an overactive imagination and even had moments where I mixed fantasy with reality – most people would call that ‘make-believe’. As I got older I worked hard to keep that creative imagination in me alive. I did this through writing and not being afraid to explore my mind through creative expression. This made it easier when I became an adult to tap into my creative mind to find new ideas for things or what some people may call ‘thinking outside the box’ for solutions.

Now that I’m 25 (soon to be 26) I am able to tap into my creative mind whenever I want. When something inspires me my brain is the first one to react with an overflowing amount of questions. When I want to create something it usually takes me a couple of minutes to find something to explore creatively.

Yes, this gives me an advantage but at the same time I can easily burn myself out. When my brain is in this continuous drive to create there are moments it reboots or shuts down… and this can last for days even weeks. People would call this writers block… and I call it annoying. I’m used to the overflow of thought always going on in my head and when there is this sudden silence due to creative burnout I’m at a loss. The silence is eerie… and so I do what I can to avoid that burnout as often as possible through taking regular breaks or even suppressing my desire to create.

So, where do I get my writing ideas?

From everywhere and anything that makes my brain tingle. Usually EDM or Netflix is guaranteed to give me some creative ideas. I also like learning new things which leads me to finding creative ways to explore what I’ve learned.

Everyone has their own way of discovering what ideas they want and where they can get them. If you are having trouble at the moment, don’t worry, relax and the ideas will come.

Until next time remember to stay safe, be creative, and as always toodles! ^.^

 

Thinking Thursday: Why should you read the Prophecy Six Series?

When it comes to buying a book it depends on what your interests are. For example, I write young adult fantasy but I can’t stand reading young adult fantasy. My interests fall under non-fiction, historical fiction, or online comics. I find that a lot of young adult fiction follows too many clichés, has predictable story-lines, and boring/basic characters.

This could just be me… since I’m a 25-year-old… but specifically young adult fiction annoys me. I think it is the way the world building is approached. Yes, the book takes place in a universe completely new to the reader but there is so much useless information in a book that doesn’t add to anything pertaining to the characters or story-line development.

Prophecy Six Series doesn’t have that!

Every piece: dialogue, element, development, character in the story has a purpose. It may not be clear at first but maybe you’ll catch the reason in the second, third, fourth, fifth, or sixth book.

My favourite part about reading is finding hidden meanings or making connections to things that the writer may have put there just to see who would catch on. Since I love that element as a reader I added it in as a writer. I love leaving breadcrumbs for my readers. These breadcrumbs could be as simple as finding out a secret to a character’s past or could be as mind blowing as to lead to the reveal of a new member of the Six.

Prophecy Six Series if part of a larger universe:

Once I’m done with the Prophecy Six Series there are going to be more stories to tell. I have planned out two more series and at least four more separate books which take place in the Prophecy Six universe. The world of Gaitan is a vast place with rich history and interesting legends that hasn’t even begun to be explored.

If you didn’t know that you should check out the official website where you can find all kinds of information about the world, characters, and creatures. You might even find some interesting additions to the published works and fun reference to the books.

This Series Tackles Social Issues.

Child of the Light was inspired by the children effected by the conflicts going on in Syria. Liora was based off of the experiences of these children who not only lost their homes and family but also were forced to adapt to the rules/ culture of a strange land. Like these children, Liora isn’t able to go back to the place she calls home because it isn’t safe or in Liora’s case there is nothing/ no one to go back to. She has to learn to adapt to new people, new rules, and is forced to fit into their culture by, at times, having to put aside her own.

This is further explored in the second book of the series where Liora is struggling to find herself, understand the terrible event that killed her people, and hold onto what little she has left of who her people were. We also approach the topics of gender identity, gender roles, and gender policing in this book. While Liora is wishing to learn ways to protect herself those around her try to fit her into the box of being a ‘proper lady’. Liora struggles to fit these conditions and eventually turns to following her heart. Each of the younger characters in this book face these issues in their own way and in the end come to their own conclusions on how to deal with their current situation. Book two also approaches issues on mental health and LGBTQ issues, similar to what our current world is facing today.

What I try to put into each book are examples of understanding, acceptance, self-discovery, and most of all empathy – something that I find this world is lacking these days. Each book has its focus around a certain set of difficult social issues and in the end allows the reader to come to their own conclusion regarding these issues.

Lastly! The most important reason to why you should buy this series:

It’s fun!

The Prophecy Six Series has its dark moments but like life there is always a silver lining. With realistic characters, a well developed world, and diverse/ deep story-line the books of this series are something new for young adults to experience. Those who have read my books have laughed, cried, and are counting down the days until the next book is released. This book shares elements of the fantasy series but does not share the same fantasy epic feel like Lord of the Rings or Aargon but it is one worth taking the time to explore… and maybe even enjoy.

SO, IF THIS INTERESTED YOU CLICK HERE TO FIND THE SERIES AND START YOUR JOURNEY TODAY!

SMASHWORDS             AMAZON.COM              AMAZON.CA

Thinking Thursdays: Plotter or Pantser?

Hi everybody!

This week on Thinking Thursdays we are tackling the question: Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Simple answer is:

Yes.

Long answer:

I’m a both.

Majority of the time when it comes to writing I will be a pantser. I find my mind flows better when I’m not restricted by a set of restraints plotting puts on my style. I like the surprises I have when I write without plans because the story may end in a completely different way than what I believed it would be when I was working at the beginning.

With that said, since I am writing a series I have been doing some plotting. Not a lot of plotting but enough to hinder my voice… just enough that the story stays on track.

Once I have completed a book and it’s released I read through, taking notes of the important pieces that I foreshadowed to make sure I don’t miss revealing them in a later book. I also do a brief breakdown of what each character in the next book is going to do, what their plan/ goals are, and how they are going to reach them. It is then I start typing.

Something you all have to understand is I never look at a book as just one book. When I’m writing I look at a book like it is one episode in a season… or maybe better a season in a series. When I’m writing Children of Sirphan my brain is already thinking of what is happening in book 5 or 6. When I’m figuring out a chapter in book 3, my brain is thinking of ways to solve an issue in book 4. I write my stories with a large array of knowledge stuffed in my tiny brain that directs me to writing what ends up in the books I have and will be publishing.

People would say, “Well, Deanna, isn’t that plotting?”

To them I say, not really because when I come across an issue that I didn’t think about while writing my current book that one change could change the entire story my brain had pre-made for me to write. That means my brain sets fire to everything it has come up with, destroying my mind castle to its foundation before picking up the stones to start building everything again. I don’t have a set plan written down, or chapters jotted out. My notes are filled with character interactions but in all sense of the word I have no idea what they are going to do.

I have an end goal in mind – meaning I know how the series will end and various footpaths on how they could get there but I don’t have any set plans on which paths they are going to take.

The best way I can describe my writing approach is that I’m a DM (Dungeon Master) and my characters are my players. I have given them a world, their equipment, their skills but it is their personalities/ actions that drive the game. I could have planned them to take the left path but instead they chose the right leading to a completely different event but working towards the set end.

Does that make sense or have I lost all of you with that analogy?

Anyways the point I’m trying to make is that I’m not a traditional plotter type writer but at the same time I’m not a pantser either. I have ideas and plans on where I want my characters to go but sometimes they change the direction of the game. It keeps me interested in my writing and in turn continues to prove to me how much I love to write. I never know what my characters have planned and that’s fine with me.

Now for today’s questions:
Are you a plotter, pantser, or a little of both? Did you understand my D&D analogy? What is your favourite drink to have on a cold winter day? (Mine’s chai tea).
Until next time remember to stay safe, get creative, and as always toodles! ^.^

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