Beautiful Books 2017 | How’s the writing going?

Beautiful Books is a writing link-up created by Cait @ Paper Fury. Today’s topic is, “How’s the writing going”?


  1. Overall, how is your mental state, and how is your novel going?
    My mental state is pretty frazzled at the moment. It is day five of NaNoWriMo 2017, and I have 1057 new words to my name. That isn’t even the recommended word count for day one… Because of this pathetic excuse for a day five word count, I have switched my goal around a little bit. Instead of trying to edit Scarred Flawless and draft 50K words of the sequal, I have made my primary goal to finish editing Scarred Flawless. This is WAY more important to me than drafting a new thing right now because I want to have it in the hands of beta readers by January. Therefore, I’ll be counting every thirty minutes of editing as one thousand words for NaNo this year.

  2. What’s your first sentence (or paragraph)?
    The Counsel Hall was no place for the innocent or kind at heart. So much innocent blood had been spilled upon the tiles that it was a wonder the floor was white instead of scarlet. Niko Devereaux had watched every drop of that innocent blood spill a thousand times over, and sometimes the presence of the unseen in the Great Room was so strong that it was difficult to tell what was tangible and what was non-corporeal.

  3. Who’s your current favorite character in your novel?
    The proper answer here is, “Please don’t make me pick a favorite fictional child”, but I’ll be honest… Niko is my favorite.

  4. What do you love about your novel so far?
    I LOVE my characters! The characters actually came to me before the plot, so they were extremely well-developed before I even started writing.

  5. Have you made any hilarious typos or other mistakes?
    I haven’t made any hilarious typos myself, but autocorrect did a number on my first draft! I didn’t realize it was on, and for some reason it insisted that my main characters name should be, “Nero Develop”, instead of Niko Devereaux. Let’s just say I spent some quality time with the find-and-replace feature before I did my first read through… 🙂

  6. What is your favorite to write: beginning, middle, or end — and why?
    Beginnings are my happy place! Nothing has to make a ton of sense in the beginning because the rest of the story is there to explain things, but middles and ends require logic! I don’t like it when writing and logic collide!

  7. What are your writing habits? Is there a specific snack you eat? Do you listen to music? What time of day do you write best? Feel free to show us a picture of your writing space!
    I don’t eat while I write because food and keyboards should never mix, but I do drink coffee or tea depending on what I’m up for that day. I do listen to music while I write, )you can click here to view my Scarred Flawless playlist on youTube). I write best either late at night or early in the morning when no one else is awake.

  8. How private are you about your novel while you’re writing? Do you need a cheer squad or do you work alone (like, ahem, Batman)?
    No one gets to know about my writing except my closest writerly friends until the first round of edits are over.

  9. What keeps you writing even when it’s hard?
    Other people did it, so I can do it too!

  10. What are your top 3 pieces of writing advice?
    ◦Don’t chase after any shiny new ideas unless you are absolutely sure that your current project isn’t going anywhere. You’ll never get anything published if you don’t stick with something.
    ◦Write about something you are passionate about. If you love something, you’ll probably also enjoy writing about it.
    ◦Writing has no rules; don’t let anybody tell you otherwise!

My NaNoWriMo2017 Bullet Journal

Happy Halloween/NaNoWriMo Eve! This is kind of last minute, but I thought I would share five of my favorite NaNoWriMo bullet journal spreads.
*If you are unfamiliar with the bullet journal system, click here for a video that will explain it better than I can.

Unfortunately I can’t show you pretty pictures like most of the bullet journalers on Instagram because all of my spreads are in braille, and the vast majority of you couldn’t read them. However, I will do my best to describe the spreads well enough for you to actually understand what I’m talking about… 🙂

  1. The Monthly Spread:
    This is basically a staple of all bullet journals, not just writing ones. I don’t typically use the monthly spread when I’m planning for a normal month, but I do during November. This is so that I can easily see what weeks are going to be insanely busy and what weeks are going to be basically free. If I’m going to have a crazy week, I make sure to cover for it in the week prior.

  2. The Word Count Tracker:
    This is a table consisting of three columns: day, word count, and damage control. Along the left-hand side, I list the 30 days of November. In the word count column, I write the word count I achieved for that particular day. In the damage control column, I write the number of words that I need to write the next day in order to fix any damage I did the day before.
    The recommended word count per day to win NaNoWriMo is 1667. Although it is possible to win NaNoWriMo by not writing on the week days and doing nothing but writing on the weekends, (I have done this), it is MUCH easier if you stick to a daily goal of somewhere around 1667 words per day. Hence the word count tracker!

  3. The daily spread:
    For me, this spread is literally just a todo list. Basically, these pages consist of checklists of everything I have to do before I can write. Without these pages, I would get completely sucked into NaNoWriMo, and important things like homework and algebra tests would be forgotten.

  4. The Inspiration Spread:
    This page consists of a list of things that inspire me to write my novel. The majority of WriMos, (including myself), tend to get sick of whatever they’re working on half way through the month and move onto a shiny new idea. This is bad, because you will never finish anything if you don’t stick with something. Also, if you were excited enough about an idea to decide to do it for NaNo, it’s probably pretty good, and you should probably stick with it! My inspiration pages usually consist of things like…
    ◦I love my characters!
    ◦My plot is super exciting!
    ◦These characters have a story to tell, and it’s my job to put it on paper.
    ◦The world needs my novel!!!!

  5. The playlist Spread:
    Most of you probably know by now that I make a playlist for everything I start. I can’t rite in silence, and if I’m going to listen to music while writing, it should totally be stuff that pertains to my story! Putting the playlist on shuffle and listening to a few songs is usually enough to get me in the writing zone, but sometimes I need a little extra help to get into the mindset to write certain scenes. So… I list all of the super important scenes that may be tough to write and associate each of them with a song so that I can listen to that song in order to get in the mindset to write that scene.

April Recap | Camp NaNoWriMo Update | Upcoming in May

It has been forever since I’ve posted a monthly recap, (mostly because I always forget them), but here is the recap for April!

What I Posted:

Snippet Sunday–in which one of my characters figuratively drowns.
Top Ten Tuesday–things that make me instantly want to read a book.
Snippet Sunday–in which one of my characters makes a sarcastic statement.
Camp NaNoWriMo Tips–staying inspired.
Snippet Sunday–my Shaman Novel synopsis.
Writing Up Wednesday–the craft of writing.
■Book Review–Fear the Drowning Deep
Camp NaNoWriMo Tips[[having the best experience.

My Writerly Achievements:

I somehow managed to score another CampNaNo win! My goal was to spend thirty hours editing my Shaman Novel, and I hit that and worked five hours over! It doesn’t look like I really did much though because I ended up writing in another subplot in order to fill a plot whole, which means that I now have to write those scenes. I’m still hoping to have this thing ready for beta readers by the first of June, but I already have a crazy buisy Summer planned, so we’ll see! My Shaman Novel also has a working title now: Flawless Scars. I love it, and it fits the story and main character really well, but you guys please let me know what you think of it in the comments! Would you be drawn to pick up a young adult fantasy book with this title?

Upcoming in May:

■Book Review–Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor.
■Book Review–Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor.
■Book Review–Embers by Karen Ann Hopkins.
■The Why I Love Me Tag–late as usual.

Staying Inspired During Camp NaNoWriMo

Greetings, writers! We are entering the third week of Camp NaNoWriMo, and this is usually when I start losing my writing inspiration. So… Here are five tips for finding the inspiration to finish that first draft!


  1. Remember why you originally wanted to tell this story. Make a list of everything that originally made you want to write it, and stick it somewhere where you’ll see it often. Mine is at the very front of the notebook where I keep the info for my Shaman Novel.
  2. Listen to your writing playlist. If you don’t have a playlist for your project, consider making one! If music isn’t your style, check out some writers on youTube or read some writing related blog posts like this one. Sometimes listening to other writers talk about being excited to write their stories can inspire you to write your own! You can check out this post for some awesome writers on youTube.
  3. Do some word sprints. Word sprints are where you set a timer for a certain amount of time and try to write as many words as possible in that time frame. If you don’t want to sprint alone, you can follow @NaNoWordSprints on twitter and write with lots of other people!
  4. Ponder this question: What is your main character’s current social media status? This does two things. First, it allows you to think about your character in a context other than your story which allows you to understand them better by thinking about how they interact with their friends. Second, it makes you think about what they’re doing. Maybe they’re reacting to what happened in the last scene on Twitter. If that’s the case, then you should probably write their reaction next.
  5. When all else fails, start what-ifing! Read the last scene you wrote, and then write “what if… insert plot event here“, until you know what you need to write next. This can be super painful if you’ve outlined every single detail, but sometimes that outline just needs to fly out the window for a while. Yeah… This can cause a mess when it comes to editing the thing, but it also makes a better story in my experience!

Writing Up Wednesday #4: Word Cound Woes

Hello, writerly people! I have not blogged in quite a while because… school/life happened. But today I bring you a Writing Up Wednesday Post!
Writing Up Wednesday is a weekly writing meme created by Lizzy @ The Bent Bookworm! This week’s topic is “Word Count Woes!”


If you’re a serious writer, you probably know that word counts are pretty important. Sometimes the word count of your manuscript can make or brake a publishing opportunity! Because of this some writers obsess over the suggested word count guidelines and stick to them religiously, and some writers tend to ignore it entirely. Personally, I am somewhat in the middle.
I like to make sure I stay kind of in the range of the suggested word count for my genre, but I do not let that number define every single move I make. I do set word count goals before I ever start writing, but I don’t force myself to stick to them. Now… The process I use to determine my prewriting word goal gets kinda nerdy, so be prepared!
I like to loosely mold my writing projects around the four act structure, so I try to pick a word count goal that is sort of close to the suggested range for my genre and is also easily divisible by four! Doing this makes it super easy to figure out how long each chunk of the four act structure needs to be, which gives me a few big milestones to hit!
To give you an example, the prewriting word goal for my “Shaman Novel” was 100000 words. That meant that every 25000 words, I needed to start transitioning to the next act. That being said, I exceeded that goal, and that’s totally fine because the story just wasn’t over at 100000 words! The current word count is 142397 words, but that is still subject to change! I am revising this novel for Camp NaNoWriMo, so I’m sure I’ll add some scenes and chop out some others! I expect the final count to round out somewhere around 150000 words, but that number isn’t set in stone either. My end goal is to tell a good story that feels complete, and I’m not going to let a number of words interfere with that as long as it isn’t completely unreasonable for the genre.

November 2016 Wrap-up

Hey y’all! This is the usual thing where I list all my posts from the month and then give you the list of upcoming stuff for December, but before I get into that, I WON NaNoWriMo!!!!!!!!!!! Actually I technically won it on the 28th and scheduled this, so I should get bonus points! But 50K wasn’t enough to tell my story so I’m gonna keep writing through December…

What I posted:
🔲The Playlist Shuffle Tag
🔲The Harry Potter Writing Cup
🔲Girl In Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow (spoiler free)
🔲The Fall Activities Book Tag
🔲Beautiful Books 2016: Novel Update
🔲Happy NaNoWriMo!!! (tips, tricks, panicking, and what to expect from me)

Upcoming for December:
🔲I’m gonna attempt to do Blogmas, which means I post each day for the first 25 days of December, but I’ll probably epically fail in my attempt…
🔲The Harry Potter Writing Cup is officially happening in January, and I’ll post the schedule of chats and such as soon as it’s finalized.
🔲I’m participating in Short Story Society, (go here if you want more info), so I’ll probably be posting some of my writing on here!
🔲I have Christmas break in the middle of the month, which means I CAN READ AND Write TO MY HEART’S DESIRE!!!!! Sorry to scream at you, but you just have no idea what school has been like for me this year… But reading means you get book reviews!!!
🔲I have some writing posts planned, but there are a lot of them, and I’m not gonna list them all out because I’m typing on my iPad and I’m kinda sick of it…

Did any of you whin NaNoWriMo? Are you going to be writing or editing this month? Do you have suggestions for stuff you want me to post this month? Let’s chat in comments!