Wednesday, 1 October 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. Also, please remember to link back to our host blogs and/or use one of the WUW buttons. Thanks!

Please note that one of our WUW headings has changed. You can find further details on that here.



What I’m Reading:

Let’s be honest here. Seeing as Heir of Fire is GINORMOUS, and I’m smack in the middle of drafting these days (which means less time for reading), I’m probably going to be saying the same thing here for a quite a while. That’s okay, because while I’d love to gobble it down in a couple days flat, it’s not a bad thing to stretch it out. I also just finished beta reading the cool, urban fantasy ms I mentioned last week and have to compile my feedback for that. I’m still reading Romeo and Juliet with my son for school as well.

What I’m Writing:

This was a real problem solving week.  I had to rearrange an entire group of scenes to try and fix a timeline/plot issue, which wasn’t exactly a barrel of laughs. There are some things that have to be timed just right in this WIP, and for whatever reason they’re conflicting with each other.  Getting that sorted is a goal for this coming week. Besides mixing around and patching together scenes, I wrote 6200 new words, so despite one setback it was still a productive week.

What Works for Me:

Like I mentioned above, if I notice a plot hole—big or small—I tackle it right away, even if that means rewriting scenes in the drafting stage. I know some people recommend leaving issues like that for revisions, but I prefer to work them out before moving on, regardless of whether or not it takes longer to get the story out. My philosophy is that plot holes can snowball, especially since one plot point hinges on another. Plus, they nag me until I fix them. I want to be able to keep writing knowing that I’m not building the rest of my story on a shaky foundation. Obviously, this doesn’t work for everyone’s process, but it helps me keep all those plot threads from getting tangled or unraveling (on the page and in my poor head).

What Else I’ve Been Up To:

It’s been busy but not with anything out of the ordinary. I made three pumpkin loaves, which we’ve been devouring, especially with tea during our afternoon homeschool lessons. Lately, that’s involved my son answering discussion questions from the back of If I Stay, which he really enjoyed.  I have to say it’s awesome and so incredibly helpful when publishers include a list of thought-provoking questions in their books. What a great way to get people talking about stories and a really handy homework assignment too.

The temperatures have dipped, half the yellow leaves blew off our trees in a span of a few days, and my family is in what I like to call “pre-hibernation” mode. While a lot of people do spring cleaning, we always scramble to get things done around the house before winter gets here. So we’ve been busy with some renovations and dejunking and whatnot, trying to beat the snow, which could show up any day (although hopefully not yet).

I also discovered music by The Boxer Rebellion this week, particularly the song “New York,” which has been a source of inspiration. Epic, primal drums make me want to write moving scenes.

So how are you this fine Wednesday?


28 comments:

  1. Glad to hear you've had a productive week! Rearranging timeline things can be a nightmare (I've had trouble with that in the past!) so it's great that you managed to sort it out. If I find a plot hole mid-draft, I have to fix it right away, too, in case it spirals out of control. Have a great week!

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    1. Thanks! My head is spinning a little because it's been so busy! The whole timeline issue was making me bang my head against the keyboard, but I printed out some calendars to try and sort it out. Hope you have a great week too! :)

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  2. YUMMY! Those loaves look absolutely delicious :-) When it comes to plot holes, I think I should also start fixing them as I go, otherwise they do snowball into plot craters and they are so much harder to deal with!
    Cheering you on, Erin!

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    1. I swear by that recipe because it's the best pumpkin bread I've ever tasted (and not because I made it, lol). It's a fall staple around here. And yes, plot craters are much worse. I figure revisions will be that much harder if I wait to tackle all of those issues then, so why not spread it out a bit? Thanks, Elodie! I'm cheering you on too! :)

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  3. BRB, Erin, I am coming to your house…those pumpkin loaves look delicious. Glad to hear you had a productive week even if rearranging scenes is a total pain…I hear ya. I have to do it a lot too. How is your son liking Romeo & Juliet by the way? (I much prefer Hamlet ;)) Have a great week Erin!

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    1. Ha ha! If you ever find yourself on the Canadian prairies, I'll be sure to have a pumpkin loaf ready to serve you! My son is enjoying Romeo and Juliet, mostly because Shakespeare is the king of dirty jokes, and Romeo is so mockable lol. I haven't read Hamlet (though I've seen the movie, which sounds awful of me) but I can see why you'd like it more. Romeo and Juliet really does make you want to smack your forehead at times because of all the terrible decisions characters make! Hope you have a great week too! :)

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  4. Mmm... Pumpkin bread. Sounds yummy! I'm with you on fixing plot holes immediately, despite what the "experts" say. It's pretty much impossible for me to press on when I know something's wrong, and I'm all for doing what works for me (and you, apparently! :-)). Have a wonderful week, Erin, and here's to some smooth, speed-bump-free writing!

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    1. Very yummy, though way higher in calories than I'd like! As for plot holes, it's hard to focus on a new scene and devote all your attention to it when you know the last one is flawed, right? That's just distracting. I figure it's best to fix them when the issue is fresh in my mind too, rather than coming back to it way later. Glad that works for you too! And I hope your writing goes smoothly this week as well! :)

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  5. I need to make pumpkin something to eat soon. Your pic looks so yum.

    I can't let plot issues go either, for the same reasons you mentioned.

    Have a great week!

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    1. It's kind of been Pumpkinfest around here lately. You should definitely treat yourself to something pumpkin-y! Best way to enjoy the fall!

      I'm glad you're the same about plot holes and that I'm not just obsessive lol. Hope your week is great too! :)

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  6. "pre-hibernation mode" Hah! Love it. "Winter" only lasts a couple of weeks down here, so we have to get all our soup-eating, fireplace-using & tea-drinking crammed into a very small space of time. Then things start blooming again. It's weird.

    I know what you mean about plot holes snowballing. I'm dealing with a couple of those right now myself. Beastie little beasties aren't they?

    Also, your pumpkin bread looks sooo amazing, that I'm now going to have to google pumpkin bread recipes. Can't have too many pumpkin recipes now can you. *hums "It's the most wonderful time of the year"*

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    1. Kind of hard to get renovations or yard work done when it's minus 30 degrees Celsius outside, so we're like little squirrels scurrying around to get ready for the snow. I like living where we have four seasons, but my opinion on that always changes in the dead of winter. Two weeks of soup in front of the fireplace sounds about right!

      Yes, plot holes are beasties, and they multiply like Gremlins if you don't get them under control asap!

      You should definitely make some pumpkin bread to celebrate fall. This recipe is an autumn staple around here and it doesn't last long! :)

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  7. Mmm, pumpkin loaf! I can just smell it from that photo.
    I hope the snow doesn't hit you too soon, though I know it hit Yellowknife today, so anything is possible.
    Good luck with the plot hole and preventing the snowball effect!

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    1. It smells amazing and tastes even better! I make it every fall because I love the recipe so much. So far we've avoided snow, and I don't think there's any in the upcoming forecast, so I'm crossing my fingers that the good weather lasts. That could change in all of five minutes though! And thanks, I'll try to avoid plot snowballs and real ones too lol! :)

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  8. Well, it's good that you got so many new words down even if you had a heck of a time with fixing a plot hole. I'm like you that way. I can't just leave it sitting there with the intention of fixing it in revisions. That would make me seriously crazy. It definitely snowballs, like you say. It always worries me that I'm going to write something and not catch a plot hole until it's too late (ie. published in whatever form). I guess that's where you have to hope that your CPs, betas, editors, and whatnot catch it even if you don't, right?

    I still haven't cracked open my copy of HEIR OF FIRE. For whatever reason I haven't been in the mood to read it or RUIN AND RISING just yet. I really do need to get to them soon before I get spoiled or get even foggier on the details of the previous books. I picked up more books from the library that are set in WWI or WWII. There are some that sound really good out there! Adult market, of course.

    I also need to get around to making some pumpkiny treats like yours. That pumpkin loaf looks super tasty. I think I have three giant cans of pumpkin in my pantry that need to get used. Shouldn't be tough to come up with ideas. Hope you're having a good week! :D

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    1. I've been writing a lot of dialogue lately, so I think that's been the reason for the high word counts. I always find dialogue is easier to write because it flows naturally. And yeah, you and I definitely have the same approach to plot holes. Like I said to Kris, they multiply like Gremlins if you don't catch them asap. I actually discovered a plot hole in Envision the other day, so it just goes to show that they crop up even when you think you've found them all!

      I've been crawling with HEIR OF FIRE even though I want to really delve in. After writing I've only been able to manage a few pages here and there. I probably should have put it aside and read something less involved while I'm drafting, but that could mean waiting months before getting to it. Ah well. I should treat myself to a nice chunk of reading as a reward. I can see why you'd get sucked into a vortex of WWI or WWII historical. Let me know if you read any particularly good ones!

      It's been Pumpkinpalooza around here lately. When you crack open one of those big cans of pumpkin it's usually good for two or three recipes though. The pumpkin bread is already almost gone. I was going to freeze two loaves, but we gobbled them down too quickly. :)


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  9. Yay for problem solving! I haven't read Heir of Fire. When I found out there are going to be like 6 books in the series I decided to stop and just wait until they're all out...in like four years! I'm like you when it comes to plot holes, I don't wait until later to go back and fix em, they have to get done right away! Mmmm, those Pumpkin loaves look amazing! Love this time of year!

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    1. Yeah, I can see why you'd wait to read the entire series at once, although it might take me four years to get through HEIR OF FIRE anyway lol! I've been doing that with the INFERNAL DEVICES series. I wanted to wait until CLOCKWORK PRINCESS was out in paperback so I could buy it and whip through all three books in a row. That should be soon, I think! Glad to hear you take the same approach to pesky plot holes. It's nice to know I'm not just obsessive about it! :)

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  10. It sounds like you got a lot done this week with the rearranging and the writing! I tend to leave things until revisions but if it's a major plot hole, I think it is best to fix with right away- especially if you know how!
    My mom gave me a giant zucchini this past week so I made chocolate zucchini bread which was yum!

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    1. I did, thanks! It always feels good to have a productive week. I always think people who leave plot holes for revisions must be really easy going and less distracted than me lol. Plot holes make me crazy! Like you say, knowing how to fix it is the key. Sometimes I need to stew on it a bit first.

      Mmm, chocolate zucchini bread is so good! Enjoy! :)

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  11. I'm impressed with the 6,200 words!
    I also revise as I go, especially with the bigger aspects like plot lines and character consistencies.
    You're pumpkin loaf looks amazing!

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    1. Thanks! For whatever reason the words have been flowing well lately. I'm hoping that keeps up! I find revising as I go helps me feel like I'm at least somewhat in control of the story, you know? Revisions would be a lot more daunting otherwise. And thanks, the pumpkin loaf turned out nicely, but I've had plenty of practice with this recipe! :)

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  12. I'm a third of the way through Crown of Midnight. I can't believe I waited so long to read these books. They're sooo good. I might cavve and get Heir Of Midnight when I finish even through I have the first two in paperback. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. I'm so glad you're enjoying it! I thought CROWN OF MIDNIGHT was even better than THRONE OF GLASS, and it's not all that often that I feel like a sequel improves on the first. It's funny you mentioned possibly caving and buying the hardcover of HEIR OF FIRE because I was so excited about it coming out that I forgot my other copies were paperbacks! Ah well. I suppose it's not a big deal if they match, and now I don't have to wait to read it. :D

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  13. Solving big problems AND writing over 6k words is an amazing week. And you homeschool? I don't think I realized that before. I'm incredibly impressed with you much you manage to keep afloat. Inspiring. Have a great week!

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    1. Thanks! It felt good to be on a roll and I hope it keeps up! This is our tenth year homeschooling, and I wouldn't trade it. It's a lot of work, but we love the extra time as a family and all the other benefits. It's tough to balance that with writing, but I'm managing--some days barely lol! Hope you have a great week as well! :)

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  14. I'm like you, if I notice a huge plot hole I can't leave it alone. It drives me crazy! Congrats on such a productive week. I'm impressed!

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  15. Ah, pumpkin loaves! Yum :)
    We might get our first snow flurries tomorrow - I'm thinking it'll be a good day to bake something pumpkin and maybe hit the bookstore for a new read!

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