Wednesday, 12 March 2014

What's Up Wednesday

In case you’re new to WUW, it’s a blog hop created by my sister Jaime and me, intended to help writers keep in touch with one another. If you’d like to participate, please sign up on the linky below, and be sure to spread some writerly encouragement around to at least a few other people taking part.

Before I jump into the details of my week, check out the super cute WUW buttons Jaime whipped up for us! If you’d like to snag them for your WUW posts, you can find them in the WUW tab above. With spring (hopefully) arriving soon, these will be a fun way to freshen up our blogs each Wednesday!

What I’m Reading:

I recently finished Alienated by Melissa Landers and really liked it. This book kind of bridges the gap between contemporary and sci-fi. It’s actually quite a bit like the new CW show Star-Crossed, only in this case the aliens are exchange students. The humor in Alienated made me laugh out loud more than once, but I also felt invested in the characters and their dilemma. I’m looking forward to Invaded, the second book in the series and not only so I can put another gorgeous cover on my shelf.

I also finished reading The Star Thief by Jamie Grey, and now I’m starting Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi.

What I’m Writing:

This has been a tough revision week. I’ve been rewriting a particular scene for the purpose of world-building, but as far as the plot goes it feels kind of redundant. I’m at the stage where I need to make some big decisions about which scenes to keep, bump to book three, or cut. It’s a challenge, but I know I’ll get it right eventually.

What Inspires Me Right Now:

My sister, Jaime, and I are planning our own little writing retreat over Skype. I’m really looking forward to it. We’ve had plenty of plot-related discussions lately, and we thought it might be fun to sit down and get a nice chunk of writing/revising done together. Hopefully that will happen very soon.

What Else I’ve Been Up To:

I got my stitches out, which is a huge improvement for my mouth. My son turned fourteen this week (How the heck did that happen? I feel old.) so we had fun birthday shopping and celebrating. The festivities included pizza, Thor 2, hockey, cupcakes (some Guinness cupcakes for the hubby and me), Chinese food, presents, and lots of other fun stuff.

So what’s up with you lately?


49 comments:

  1. Happy birthday to your son! Those cupcakes look amaaaaaazing!

    You're right - you'll definitely get there with your scenes. Sometimes you've just got to get it all out before you can start arranging it properly.

    Have a great week!

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    1. I'll be sure to pass along your birthday wishes to him! And the cupcakes were delicious. It's become a birthday tradition for us to buy them from Cupcake Conspiracy, a local peanut-free business.

      You know what's funny? A little while after posting this, the answer totally hit me right in the face, and it was so obvious I don't know how I didn't see it sooner. I'm sure this won't be the last time in this ms that happens!

      Hope you have a great week too!

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  2. Alienated another book i want to read too.... But its not in kindle yet :( And i love star-crossed it's actually way better than I thought it would be. I am really getting into it now.

    Hang in their with the revisions. It's hard going but you will get there. A writing weekend over skype sounds great :)

    Have a good week.

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    1. At first I wasn't sure if I connected to the voice in ALIENATED, but it grew on me as I read. It started off more on the humorous, sarcastic side but eventually got into some more serious issues and that's when I started to like it. Hope you enjoy it as well when it comes out on Kindle.

      And I think I figured out my revision issue, so I should be trucking along again. :)

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  3. Alienated sounds like a fun read, I'll have to add it to my ever-growing TBR pile!

    Good luck with your revisions!

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    1. ALIENATED was funny, but it also had some serious aspects to it and the stakes definitely grew as the book went on. Thanks for wishing me luck on my revisions!

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  4. Happy birthday to your son! Thor 2(Loki 2 I call it) and amazing cupcakes are a great way to celebrate. Have a great time Skype-retreating with Jaime. Get tons done! I know, world building scenes are tricky. It can be that you can sneak the info in somewhere else. Have a great week!

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    1. Yes, Loki is always a huge highlight. That Tom Hiddleston smile gets me every time. The cupcakes have become a birthday tradition in our house, which I love because it means I don't have to bake a cake. I think I've figured out my revision issue now, so I should be moving along at a better pace again soon. Hope you have a great week too!

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  5. A Skype writing retreat sounds fun! Revisions can be really tricky, especially when it comes to big-picture decisions. Good luck with it! :)

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    1. I'm really looking forward to it. Jaime and I thought it would be a fun motivator. And yeah, revisions are super tricky, but fortunately I enjoy this part of the process, messy though it is. Thanks for wishing me luck!

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  6. FourthBorn turns 14 this summer, so I know the feeling, Erin. When four out of your six children are over the age of 13, you get to feel old and wonder where the time went. *sigh* Anyway, it sounds like you had a great time celebrating your son's birthday. Guinness cup cakes? Now that I have to try!

    I'm sure you and Jaime will have a really productive and fun time with that Skype retreat. All the best with your writing efforts this week. :)

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    1. It goes by way too quickly, doesn't it? Fourteen is a great age though, so despite my feeling old, I'm enjoying where he's at. And if you ever get the chance, make sure you sample some Guinness cupcakes. These weren't quite as strong in flavour as we would have liked, so there was talk of us trying to bake some of our own.

      Hopefully Jaime and I will stick to our plan for our writing retreat. We tend to be chatty and get off track. :D

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  7. LOVE the new buttons, and those cupcakes look amazing! So cool that you and Jaime are planning a Skype retreat -- such a fantastic idea. I hope you two get tons done! Have a wonderful week, lady!

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    1. Aren't they cute? Jaime does such a great job on them. The cupcakes were delicious. They've become a birthday tradition in our house, which means I don't have to bake a cake and we all get to pick out which flavours we want. I'm really looking forward to our writing retreat. Jaime and I thought it would be a fun motivator. I'm hoping we get lots done too. It'll be a challenge to stick to our plan instead of going off on chatty rabbit trails! Have a wonderful week yourself! :)

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  8. Happy birthday to your son! And yay for getting stitches out!

    Once again I'm jealous I don't have a sister (just don't tell my brothers that) - enjoy your Skype writing retreat :)

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    1. I'll pass along your birthday wishes to him. And as far as my stitches go, I'm relieved to have them out. I've now graduated to somewhat crunchy foods again. :D

      I consider myself very lucky to have an awesome sister and that she's a writer too. I'm sure we'll have a blast and hopefully get some solid work done on our retreat.

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  9. Congrats on getting your stitches out!!! Now you can actually enjoy cupcakes...ones that don't come through a straw. ;) And happy birthday to your son. 14 is Epic. (And you're soooo NOT old)

    Good luck with your revisions! It's always tough to decide what to keep and what to cut.

    Hope you have an amazing week! Go enjoy all those things (esp. tasty beers) that you couldn't have before :)

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    1. Thanks! My mouth feels a lot better, so I can now eat somewhat crunchy foods. And seeing as I'm done with painkillers and antibiotics, I can enjoy some craft brews again. Yum. I'll be sure to pass your birthday wishes along to my son. He may be fourteen but sometimes he acts older than I do lol.

      I think I figured out my revision issue, so that's a good thing, especially since it means I get to keep the scene. Love it when that happens.

      Have an amazing week yourself! :)


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  10. Good luck with your revisions! Glad you've got your stitches out, I bet you feel better for it. Enjoy your writing retreat!

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    1. Thanks! The revision issue has been resolved (I think), so I'm happy about that. And yep, my mouth is feeling way better now. I'm sure Jaime and I will have loads of fun with our writing retreat, and hopefully we'll get lots of work done too. :)

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  11. I'm actually really into Star-Crossed (which I didn't think I would be) so I'll have to check out Alienated.
    Good look with your revisions!

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    1. I thought the latest episode did a good job of setting up the supporting characters' story lines, so hopefully that spells out good things for the plot. If you decide to read ALIENATED I hope you enjoy it too. And thanks for wishing me luck with my revisions. It's been a slower start this time around, but I'll get there!

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  12. Congratulations on having your stitches removed. It always feels so much better when stitches are gone, though the incision site may still itch or feel sore.

    A Skype retreat sounds really fun. I wish I had someone to discuss writing with like that.

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    1. Thanks! The stitches were super annoying and that's almost worse than having titanium drilled into your jaw. I'm so glad they're gone now.

      Skyping with my sister has become an indispensable part of my writing process. I'm very lucky!

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  13. I've watching Star-Crossed and really liking it :)

    A writing-retreat with your sister?! That's so cool! I hope you guys can set that up soon.

    Have a great day!

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    1. Star-Crossed takes place a little further in the future than I was expecting, which I think is cool. The last episode did a good job of setting up some of the secondary characters' story lines, so I'm looking forward to where they might go with those.

      Jaime and I thought a writing retreat would be a fun motivator. We gab on Skype all the time, so why not be productive about it, right? Hope you have a great day too!

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  14. Your Skype writing date sounds really fun!

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    1. I'm looking forward to it a lot. I know it'll be fun and hopefully a good motivator too!

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  15. I'm very much looking forward to our Skype writing retreat. I'm hoping it will help me really dig into WoN and get my writing legs underneath me again. That's too bad that you're having a tough time with that particular scene. Any way I can help you out with it, just let me know. You can always bounce stuff off of me...especially now since I'm a bit bouncier than I'd like. ;-)

    I have serious cupcake envy right now, but the last thing I need is a cupcake. (see above) Still, I could really go for a Cupcake Conspiracy cupcake. Or ten.

    Though I didn't like ALIENATED as much as you did, I'm still eager to find out what happens next, so I'll most likely read INVADED when it's out. We'll have to figure out when we want our writing retreat. I'm game whenever you are!

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    1. Me too! I think we could both use the motivation to get a nice chunk done on our WIPs. The particular scene that was giving me problems has now been resolved. At least I think it has. The answer suddenly hit me not long after posting this. Basically, I'm changing the reason why the characters are in the particular setting they're in, but seeing as they still get to visit that setting, that means I get to keep the world-building. I'll explain more some time soon.

      The cupcakes were yummy, but the Guinness ones could've used a tad more beer. Trev & I might try making our own version sometime. I'm glad we started the tradition of buying cupcakes from Cupcake Conspiracy because it saves me the hassle of baking a cake. Plus, it gives us a reason to support an awesome peanut-free business.

      I'm hoping Melissa Landers ups the sci-fi angle in INVADED. Judging by the way ALIENATED ended, I think that's a possibility. As for our writing retreat, next week sometime would probably work best. I'm excited! :)

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  16. Mmm, cupcakes! I'll be making some chocolate chip banana ones soon for my son's bday(he'll be 2). Hope you and Jamie have some fun sistah/writing time together!

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    1. I love banana chocolate chip! I bet your son will gobble those down if he's anything like me lol. I'm sure Jaime and I will have a blast with our little retreat. We chat on Skype all the time, but hopefully we'll actually get some work done!

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  17. Hi, Erin! Those cupcakes look soooo delicious. Too bad they can't be shared over Skype! :)

    Happy reading and writing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

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    1. They were very tasty! We polished them off already, but I could use a few more right about now! :)

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  18. Wow those cupcakes - yum! Happy Birthday to your son, it sounds like he had a great day.


    That's so fun that you guys are having a writing retreat. I hope you get loads of words written.

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    1. The butter cream icing was so much better than a picture can get across. It's a birthday tradition I'm very glad we started. I'll pass along you birthday wishes to my son. He had an awesome day. :)

      I'm hoping Jaime and I get lots done on our little retreat too. We have a tendency to go off on rabbit trails, but we're going to try and be disciplined! :)

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  19. Holy cow, I just realized you and Jaime were sisters! SO COOL!!! What would we do without awesome things like Skype and the internet?

    And that sounds like a fun party--today is my son's birthday. He's turning four. :)

    Happy writing!

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    1. Ha, I love how people are still just figuring out that Jaime and I are related! And yes, it's very cool having a sister who's also a writer. Instant critique partner! It's funny because we rarely talk on the phone anymore. Skype and Google Hangouts make it more like we're actually visiting, so we've grown to prefer that.

      Happy birthday to your son too! Four is a fun age! :)

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  20. Those cupcakes looks good. Good luck with your revisions! Have fun with your Skype writing retreat!!

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    1. They were very tasty! Even more so because I didn't have to bake them lol. Thanks for wishing me luck. I solved my revision issue so that's a good start. :)

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  21. I really, really want a cupcake now! They look amazing! Good luck on the revisions. That's what I've been working on this week too.

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    1. There are few things more fun to eat than cupcakes. These were especially good--lots of butter cream icing! Too bad I didn't have a bunch more of them to fuel my revisions. Good luck with your revising this week too!

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  22. Guiness cupcakes!?! That is the most awesome thing of the day! You win.

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    1. They were tasty, although we expected the Guinness flavour to be stronger. The hubby and I decided we should try to make our own and add more beer to the recipe. :)

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  23. That sounds like an amazing birthday! Guiness cupcakes? Yuuuuummmmm. And Chinese food and Thor 2? Even better. Hope you're feeling better now that you have your stitches out and have an awesome writer retreat with your sister! I took one recently (sorta) where I went to the AWP conference in Seattle then took a few days to focus on writing (and visit a few friends) in Portland. It felt great :)

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    1. He had a very fun birthday, and I ate way too much. I'm feeling much better now, thanks! I'm glad to be able to eat normal food again, as you can tell from all the birthday food details I gave lol. I'm looking forward to my writing retreat with Jaime. Hopefully we'll get lots accomplished! A writers retreat in Seattle sounds awesome! I'm glad you enjoyed that. :)

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  24. I hope you love Ignite Me! I was so happy with it. If only I could have an ounce of Tahereh Mafi's writing talent ...
    A writing retreat sounds lovely. I hope y'all can make it happen soon!

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