Favorite Quotes

Hello Fiction Lovers!

For this week I thought I’d share some of my favorite quotes about writing. Whenever I see them I start thinking about how I can write better and/or these quotes make me want to write. So without further ado, here they are:

“If there is a book you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”

–Toni Morrison

“This is how you do it: you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it’s done. It’s that simple and that hard.”

–Neil Gaiman

“A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.”

–Thomas Mann

“There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.”

–W. Somerset Maugham

“Be ruthless about protecting writing days, i.e,  do not cave into endless requests to have ‘essential’ and ‘long overdue’ meetings on those days.”

–J. K. Rowling

“Have a point.”

–Phillip Round (My Lit. Professor)

Most of these are classics that I’ve seen time and again when I’m looking up stuff about writing, but even with that repetition they still hold true for me and don’t get old. Do you have quotes or sayings that stand up to the test of time as well? Let me know in the comments. Also, if you have any questions feel free to ask me those as well and I hope you all have a good week!

 

 

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NaNoWriMo

Hello Fiction Lovers!

Since it’s been about a week since NaNoWriMo started this year I thought it’d be good to talk about it this week. For those of you who might not know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month and it occurs during November every year. The goal of NaNoWriMo is to writing 50,000 words by the end of the month. It also has a website that has forums that give advice on many different topics such as characters, plotting help, and naming things and they send out pep talks to help writers keep writing (https://nonowrimo.org). Through their website you can also join a regional group that helps give encouragement and that you can connect with though you don’t have to do so. NaNoWriMo is good at making the act of writing a more social thing–if you go to the website–and that can help make those 50,000 words seem a little less daunting because you know thousands of other people are trying to reach that goal as well and that makes their encouragement a bit more meaningful.

I like NaNoWriMo a lot, but I have to be truthful and say that I haven’t yet reached the 50,000 word goal in the years that I’ve done it. However, I did write more in a more consistent manner in November than I would have otherwise, so I would still recommend participating even if you don’t think you’ll reach the goal or think it’s too late to try since you missed the first week. It also opens a good way to get in contact with other writers to make friends and possibly get feedback on your work in the future. They also focus a lot on putting aside your inner editor and just getting words on the page, which I’ve never been as good at, but even if you do still edit some it can still help you focus more on the story than what it looks/sounds like. That can help you write more and make it so you don’t spend more time editing that writing when the first draft isn’t even finished.

This year instead of working on a single project I decided to count any words that I write for fun and that aren’t part of a school assignment or other required activity, only what I want to and because I feel the need to write. If you want to find me on the NaNoWriMo website my username is Corinelle.

Thanks for reading and let me know if you have any questions! Feel free to post about your own NaNoWriMo experiences in the comments and I hope you all have a fun writing filled week!

Game Recommendation

Hello Fiction Lovers!

Today I thought I’d recommend a game that I enjoy playing. It’s called Dragonwood: A Game of Dice & Daring. The goal of the game is to attack monsters and defeat them to earn points. The person that has the most points once both dragons are defeated or once the Adventurer deck is gone through twice wins the game. There’s also enchantments you can use to defeat the monsters. It’s a simple, fun game that can be played through pretty quickly. The longest game that I played took around 40 minutes, I think, and most got done quicker than that. The game can be played with 2-4 people and is recommended for ages 8+. It’s definitely more fun to play with 3-4 people, though. The designs on the cards are colorful and cute and the dice are a pretty red. It’s important to note though that the dice only go up to 4, so you can’t use a normal dice to replace one if you lose one.

The game is easy to learn and I’ve had older people, fellow college students, and younger cousins have fun playing it. Here’s the official description, if you’re interested:

Dare to enter Dragonwood! Deep in the heart of this mythical forest lurk angry ogres, giggling goblins, and even the famed and fearsome fire-breathers themselves! Collect sets of adventurer cards to earn dice, which you will use to roll against your foes. Stomp on some fire ants, shriek at a grumpy troll, or strike the menacing orange dragon with a magical silver sword. Choose your strategy carefully because the landscape of Dragonwood is ever-changing. Only the bravest will overcome the odds to emerge victorious!

Thanks for reading and I hope you have fun playing this game! Let me know if you have any questions and feel free to recommend any fantasy games you like to play in the comments.

A Bit of World Building: Resources

Hello Fiction Lovers!

Today I thought I’d a little about world building and how deciding on a certain climate and landscape combined with the society’s values that live there can vastly influence influence your story, even if only in the background. I also thought that since I’ve been talking more about my current writing recently that I’d continue on that theme.

In A Cursed Blessing for nine months out of the year it is snowy and cold, the other three months have comparatively mild weather. This makes agriculture more difficult but the society is not a hunting and gathering one that follows an animal’s migration. As for the landscape there is a large forest in the south and a few smaller ones scattered throughout the country. The rest of the landscape is more hilly and the whole country is surrounded by mountains. Because, of the society’s fear of their goddess, however, they rarely cut down the trees for fuel or to make things. The cold climate has also caused them to put extra significance on fire and they’ll heat brands with it to mark themselves with symbolic symbols.

All this, I hope, creates an interesting background for my story, but it has also raised some questions that I didn’t have when I first started writing it. Issues such as what do they make their houses and furniture and writing implements out of if they don’t use wood? How do they feed themselves and what do they eat? What animals and plants can survive under such conditions? How does the climate affect the society and religion? Some of these questions I don’t have answers to yet, but I’ll need to know them to fully flesh out the world my characters are living in and make sure there are no logistical errors that will break readers’ suspension of disbelief. Of course, not all the questions always need to be answered but the big ones do such as the problem of food. Everything still has to be believable. Also, you don’t need to worry about the questions right away, but as you write and the world is created it can be good to consider them. Sometimes they can lend a whole new depth to the world and influence the plot in ways you couldn’t have imagined before exploring them.

Resources are important; survival depends upon some of them and wars can be fought over both necessary and luxury resources. Climate, landscape, and society’s values all affect both the availability of resources and the lack of them. They will affect your story, even if only in the background, so they are important to consider once you’ve made decent headway into your story or during the editing process.

Thanks for reading and let me know if you have any questions! I hope you all have a great week!

“The Way of Kings” Book Soundtrack

Hello Fiction Lovers!

I just read this article on Fantasy Faction and I thought I’d share it with you: http://fantasy-faction.com/2017/the-kaladin-book-soundtrack-based-on-the-way-of-kings-by-brandon-sanderson-call-to-action. I’m sure many of you have heard of The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson and I thought you might want to support the kick starter to create this soundtrack based on the book. There are only three days left to become a backer and it’s all or nothing depending on if they get their funding. If you can’t become a backer I would still strongly urge you to share the project with others so more people know about this really cool project. The Fantasy Faction article is about how the project came to be and was truly inspirational.

I hope you all have a fun weekend! Please let me know if you have any questions and feel free to post your thoughts in the comments.

Book Recommendation

Hello Fiction Lovers!

This weekend I was organizing all the books I bought over the years–which made me realize all the books I still want to get in print–and came across some my old favorites. Now I’m planning on revisiting all of the interesting characters and stories they contain over the next few months. I thought I’d share what they are with you as well in case you were looking for something good to read.

The first recommendation is Tamora Pierce’s Song of the Lioness series that gives the foundation for many of her other books. It’s about a girl, Alanna, who wants to be knight and has to pretend to be a boy to achieve that goal. I liked watching her grow up as well as the magic and battles that take place throughout the series. Pierce is very good at writing heroines and I would also recommend the other series she’s written.

The next recommendation goes to Beguilement by Lois McMaster Bujold. It’s the first in a lovely quartet composed of romance, danger, unique magic and monsters, and realistic characters. I believe it’s one of the more distinctive fantasy series I’ve read, in that it did have it’s own distinctive monsters and magic that tied in well together and made sense for the world. It doesn’t rely on preconceived expectations but draws the reader in under it’s own power. It is also one of the best fantasy romances I’ve read to date.

The third recommendation is Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson. He also creates a unique world where heroes are reborn as gods and magic is governed by color and Breath. The story involves a reluctant marriage, fear of war, living gods, and a sentient blade. Truth be told, the cover was the thing that first drew me to the book and what really made me want to read it. The cover’s simple but beautiful, and depicts the reluctant bride (so if you’re like me, you can picture her as more than a vague impression hair, hands, and body outline).

Those are the main books I really want to re-read now and I hope you’ll enjoy them as well. Feel free to post in the comments books you would like to re-read and let me know if you have any questions! I hope you have a good week!

Music Recommendation

Hello Fiction Lovers!

Today I thought I’d recommend my favorite band that I listen to while writing. The band is called Two Steps From Hell (sometimes the songs are also under Thomas Bergersen–he composes a lot of the songs) and I’ve listened to some of the songs so much that I’ll recognize them when they are played in a movie trailer. I like listening to TSFH’s songs because there always seems to be multiple songs that fit the tone of the scene I’m trying to write and the instrumentals/choir are always beautiful. You can find the songs on YouTube and iTunes.

Below I’ll list different types of scenes and the songs I like to listen to when I’m writing them. Please keep in mind though that this is just a very narrow example of what TSFH has to offer and I encourage you to go listen to their other songs as well because, chances are, you’ll find one you like just as much as I like these.

Battle Scenes: Sons of War, Moving Mountains, Strength of a Thousand Men, Black Blade

Emotional Scenes: Promise, The Ancients, My Freedom, Homecoming

Romantic Scenes: Starfall, Meant to Be, Remember Me, Undying Love

Scenes with building tension: Magnan Imus, Earth Rising, Starvation, False King

Songs by TSFH are also good at making anything you do seem epic so if you need an extra boost to do housework/homework, or want to make a board game extra dramatic I would also recommend their songs for that.

Please let me know if you have any questions or if there are other things you would like me to post about (relating to fiction and writing). If you have any music recommendations feel free to post them in the comments. I hope you all have a good week!