Monday, 24 August 2015

Ready. Set. WRITE! Week #12

Welcome back to Ready. Set. WRITE! My co-hosts, Alison Miller, Katy Upperman, Jaime Morrow, Elodie Nowodazkij, and I hope you’re looking forward to yet another productive summer! If you’re new this year and you’re wondering what RSW is all about, it’s a summer long writing intensive for writing, revising, or planning your WIP. It’s also a way to keep each other accountable. Every Monday we’ll share our posts, keeping them brief in order to maximize our writing time and minimize on blogging. Sign up on the linky at one of the host blogs each week, and remember to visit other participants’ blogs to cheer them on as well. For more info on RSW and a link to our lovely stash of buttons, click here.

How I did on last week’s goal(s)

My goal was to revise two scenes, which I mostly did. I still have a couple minor characters that need names, so I have to fill in those blanks yet. I’m super picky about names and spend hours & hours looking for just the right ones, so I put that off for the time being.

My goal(s) for this week

Seeing as this is the last week of summer, I’m only planning on tinkering with the next scene in my WIP.

A favorite line from my story OR a word or phrase that sums up what I wrote/revised

The sky is clear tonight, a deep indigo blue scattered thick with stars. This same sky wraps around the whole world, binding us all together, one possibly doomed planet spinning in space. I feel too small, too insufficient for what lies ahead, like a tiny pinprick of pale starlight trying desperately to illuminate the entire Earth.

The biggest challenge I faced this week

General busyness as summer comes to an end. Extreme humidity that gave me the energy level of a slug. A thousand questions about where to go next in the writing process. I’m at a crossroads and I think after RSW I’ll take a break to re-strategize.

Something I love about my WIP

I love that my trilogy will soon have its own beer. My husband is a home brewer—a very good one—and he designed a craft beer specifically for my story: an imperial chocolate porter aged with oak and Irish whiskey. Sounds amazing, right? Chocolate, oak, and Irish whiskey can all be found in my story.  We’re calling it Synergy Porter, after the fictional city in my trilogy and because the ingredients work together to create synergy (aka deliciousness). It’s also a play on words since my characters have implants called “Ports.” And in book 3, Synergy Porter makes an appearance on the page. I love that my husband and I found a fun way to combine our skills/obsessions, and I can’t wait to sample the final result. Note: I like my beer the same way I like my stories—dark, rich, and on the sweet side.

Thank you so much for your incredibly supportive comments last week. Just to be clear, my purpose in posting about depression and query rejections wasn’t to be all “woe is me,” but to be honest about how tough it is to cope with both at the same time. I wanted to put that out there as a way of acknowledging the issue for myself and to let those of you who are going through the same thing know that you aren’t alone.  Your response meant a lot to me, and I don’t think it’s a coincidence that I had a better week. You guys are awesome!

On to the fun stuff now…

The winner of our final RSW care package of the summer is:


Congrats, Alicia! Hope you enjoy all the goodies Katy put together. Consider it a reward for all your hard work this summer!

Seeing as we’ve all been typing our fingers to stubs this summer, we deserve a little pampering, don’t you think? This week, the RSW co-hosts will be treating ourselves to manicures, and you’re welcome to join us!

If you’d like to participate, pick a nail polish colour or design that somehow reflects your WIP and snap a shot for our wrap up posts next Monday (August 31st). You can also include an excerpt from your story and/or an explanation for how your nails tie in with your WIP. Feel free to share your manicure on Twitter with the #RSWrite hashtag or on Instagram as well.

Below, I’ve posted some easy, natural recipes to treat those hardworking hands before you apply your polish. I haven’t tried any of these yet, but they’re super simple and can be made with ingredients you probably have kicking around your kitchen. Enjoy!

Lemon Honey Soak
Soften cuticles, hydrate, and make nails stronger & whiter:  Mix 1 cup warm water, juice from ½ a lemon, 1 tbsp honey. Soak.

Brown Sugar Exfoliant
Soften skin:  Mix two spoons brown sugar, spoon of olive oil. Rub hands for 1 minute & rinse with warm water.

Honey & Olive Oil Hand Mask
Soften & nourish skin: Mix equal amounts of honey & olive oil. Apply to hands for 30 minutes & rinse.

Lemon Sugar Hand Scrub
Soften skin: Mix 2 spoons sugar, juice of half a lemon. Rub hands to exfoliate.

Cinnamon Milk Soak
Soften skin: In microwavable bowl combine 2 cups water, 1 cup milk, 1 ½ tbsp. olive oil, pinch of cinnamon (or other spice). Microwave 20 seconds or until comfortably warm. Soak hands 10 minutes & rinse.

Remember next Monday is our last post of RSW. I can't believe how fast this summer sped by! Looking forward to seeing everyone’s manicures next week!


  1. The snippet is fantastic! "like a tiny pinprick of pale starlight trying desperately to illuminate the entire Earth." <3

    That's awesome about your WIP getting its own beer. My husband bought me a little stained glass bird that looks like one from my WIP and it made my book feel so much more "real."

    Hope you have a good week and enjoy your break.

  2. Erin, I'm not even exaggerating when I say I love every single excerpt you share. LOVE.

    I think it's fantastic the WIP has it's own beer. So very cool. We don't want my husband's talents crossing over to my WIPs however -- comedy about my writing sounds like the roast from hell.

    Good luck this week!

  3. The beer sounds amazing, my husband would love it. And I think it's so sweet you can work in your hobbies together. Adorable.

    I missed your last week's post, but will now be going back to read. Sounds like where I've been the past week. Querying and depression go hand in hand. Best of luck to you!

  4. I'm glad I'm not the only one who waits until edits to give minor characters names. :P

    Your WIP has its own beer? That's SO cool! Have a fantastic week!

  5. That beer sounds great. So sweet that he's making one named after your MS! Glad you met your goals, and humidity does drain. Horribly. Sometimes we need to pull back for a bit and let our minds work themselves out. Even inspiration needs a break. Have a nice week!

  6. Hang in there with rejections. They get you down at the best of times. You're definitely not alone :) *hugs*

  7. Gorgeous excerpt, so many pretty sentences! I always love lines about the night sky and stars. =) And super excited about the manicures, already planning mine out!

  8. Dude. That is SO COOL that your husband is designing a beer to go with your story. And that snippet, as always, is gorgeous! I am so glad you had a better week, lady! Enjoy the end (*sniff) of summer!

  9. I love that you have a custom beer! Awesome. A few friends of mine have tried home brewing with mixed results, haha. It's definitely an art that takes time to get right. I'm inspired by these nail and hand treatments. I may have to try one.

  10. OMG that is super cool. I don't drink beer myself (never found one I like) but having something like that for your series is super cool!

  11. What a sweet husband you have! And your excerpt is gorgeous, per usual. Love: "I feel too small, too insufficient for what lies ahead, like a tiny pinprick of pale starlight trying desperately to illuminate the entire Earth."

    Glad your week went better than the last. Good luck this week! Can't wait to try out one of those manicure recipes! :)

  12. That's awesome that your trilogy got its very own beer! I love beer, though I don't believe I've ever had one with chocolate.

  13. Your own beer? That is so unique and amazing! Also, that is a nice and subtle goal for this week. You're our hero...once again. We can't wait to see how your manicure comes out. Good luck on your goals this week!

  14. Well now the pressure is on to execute brew day and turn out a fittingly great beer for a great story! ;) Won't it be unfortunate to have to make a few attempts... Just to get it right! Kind of like drafting and revising :) I would take you all on as Beta drinkers if sending through mail didn't cause issues ;) Guess Erin will have to judge my query bottle!

  15. I'm the same as you with names. I have to pick a name right away though, I can't leave it blank or anything like that, but if the name isn't working I change it. I take my names seriously. ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Have a great week!

  16. Your WIP will have it's own beer?! That's just about the coolest thing I've ever heard!! Your hubby wins Husband of the Year! *confetti* I love your excerpt, too. Have a great week!

  17. LOVE the excerpt and the idea of the beer! So cool :) Haha I wait to give characters names as well and my manuscript is full of various people named X at the moment. Good luck with everything this week!

  18. Oh, my gosh! I'm dying over your trilogy's beer. That is the absolute coolest. Also, it sounds really yummy! You've done amazingly this summer, Erin. I'm inspired by everything you've accomplished, not to mention your most excellent attitude. Thanks so much for all of your support, and for sharing your gorgeous WiP excerpts. I'll miss these weekly updates come fall! Hope you have a wonderful final week, Erin, and best of luck naming those characters!