Monday Morning Vlog & Randoms

Every Sunday night, I go to my parents house for a family dinner.  It’s usually…interesting.  Colorful.  Potentially hazardous to your health.

And then there was last night, where my sister and I somehow started watching a marathon of Jersey Shore episodes.  Now, I’ve never actually watched the show (I know, what’s wrong with me???) but I could not stop laughing.  It’s so bad it’s good, and then it’s so good it goes back to bad again.  I totally admit, I am that person who would stop and watch the collision just to see the train wreck afterwards.

But after having been ensconced for several weeks in my apartment working on projects, this was a welcome relief.  Something light, not serious, and totally amusing.

So this week on the YA Rebels, we all read from our books, or from projects we were working on, or something we were proud of.  I read a couple of pages from WITCH EYES, which was a lot of fun.  Here’s a little behind the scenes scoop:  this was the 4th section I picked (one from each of the first four chapters).  Originally, I had a really great idea, but I needed it to storm here in Ohio.  Well, we were predicted to have rain from Thursday all the way through Saturday night.  But guess what?  Rain in Ohio only comes when you DON’T want it.  So I had to change my selection.  And this is what I ended up with!

Monday Randomosity

This week on the Rebels, we talked about story structure.  Basically, the kinds of things you do to frame your story and give you some sort of…well, structure to build up from.  I love this topic, and all the stuff that goes into thinking about where to set your book, when to set your book, how long a time frame the book will occur over, and other choices by the author.

So there’s a bunch of rambling in my video, because I spent most of the weekend locked in a room, Misery-style, working frantically on revisions to this project.  So I was a little wired. 😉

Leprechauns Versus Vampires

Did you know that vampires versus werewolves was over?  I didn’t.  Apparently the new hot rivalry is vampires versus leprechauns.  I mean, it makes a certain amount of sense.  Vampires sparkle much like the pot of gold does, right?  Maybe the leprechauns are having performance anxiety on behalf of their gold, which isn’t as sparkly as it used to be.  Or maybe those vampires are height-ists, and have suppressed leprechaun rights for hundreds of years.  Or maybe, just maybe, there is something darker going on.  Maybe someone wants the vampires and the leprechauns at war so they’re both out of the way.

Or y’know, it’s just the topic of the Rebels this week.

So let me tell you a fun story about the round robin.  It was story telling week on the Rebels this week, and we chose the round robin format.  Monday starts the story, and Tuesday picks up where she left off, etc etc etc.  Lovely, right?

OH DEAR GOD.

I watched Monday’s video, got sucked into Gretchen’s story.  And then Hannah made it gay.  Then Victoria brought some of her delicious words to the tale.  And then.

Then.

I can barely speak of it.

Thursday brought in Twilight.  And then Friday brought in Buffy.  So picture the setting.  Three leprechauns who seek war.  Edward and Bella, who’s already feasted on one of the little green buggers.  And Buffy.  All on a cliffside (presumably near Forks, I would suppose).  This is what I walked into on Saturday.

So enjoy, because I struggled with my part of the story.  Don’t get me wrong, I had a BLAST with this week – but they sure didn’t make it easy for me, did they?  And thanks to whoever suggested leprechauns versus vampires in the first place.  Please, send me your address, so I can send you loving gifts in the mail….promise. 🙂

Also, this had some of my favorite quotes I’ve written lately.  “She gave new meaning to the word Hellmouth.”  “His shirt was two sizes too small, his chest two sizes too big.”  “A lifetime of the blackest, wicked luck that can e’er be imagined.  Suffer, and know ye will rue the day ye interfered in our wee workings.”

I Should Be Packing

But instead, I’m blogging.  That makes a whole lot of sense, right?  Well, I’m getting ready to leave for Colorado tonight, which promises to epic* and awesome** on all fronts.  But first!  I vlogged.  Our topic on the Rebels this week was on how we develop characters, tips and tricks and how we come at it.  My analogy?  I flesh out my characters like I’m casting the Real World.  (Hey, don’t give me that look.  I could have said Jersey Shore).  So check out my video, maybe leave me a comment, and I promise I’ll do the obligatory Vacations Picture Post*** when I get back.

* translation: long
** translation: lots of bickering
***Now with added Embarrassing Drunk-shots!

Its Napping Time!

This week’s theme for the YA Rebels was ‘a voiceover-slash-day in the life’.  So I showed you a little bit of what my morning routine is like.  You can check the video out below (and come on, I have to at least get more views than LEAH). 😉

I’m finishing up my edits this weekend, getting ready to start one last readthrough before I turn them in.  (Early, might I add).  There is nothing worse than getting to the almost-ending, realizing you have to rewrite this minor little scene because you have a MUCH better idea…and then it totally screws up your ending.

I am off to go sneak a few chapters of LIAR in today, so I’m ready for this medieval torture session (aka a YA book club) that Leah and I are going to in a couple of weeks.

Friday Randoms

So I owe a real blog  post, but edits and other things have EATEN MY BRAIN this week.

  • First, that thing you have to write that is similar to an outline and also summarizes your book?  It was decided by Twitter this week that the proper form of that word is synopsi. Technically, that would be the plural of synopsis, but I don’t think synopsis quite conveys the amount of evil that synopsi does.  Synopsi sounds like something slithery, like something that has tentacles, or tentacles with those gross sucker things attached.

So, y’know.  Just in case you didn’t know what to call it.  There’s also a hashtag.  #downwithsynopsi

Man, someone should really draw a picture of what a synopsi looks like in its naturally slimy habitat.

  • I saw this article earlier in the week, and thought it was just amazing.  You should go check it out.
  • And my Rebels video went up a few days early this week.  I talked about religion and morality in YA, and sadly had to cut out a lot of what I had to say to keep it under 4 minutes.  Sadsigh.  But check it out, and weigh on your opinion.  Should YA books have a moral lesson, or not?  Are writers responsible for showing that all actions have suitable consequences?

And your moment of zen:

“Your mom is fictional.”

Another week, another video for the Rebels.  This week we talked about villains – favorite villains, favorite villain lines, what makes a good villain, etc etc etc.

I had a pretty clear vision of what I was doing for this week.  It was simple.  Creepy intro.  Lots of talk about villains.  Skits with my supervillain alter-ego (who never DOES get named, although he is apparently the chief emissary for a very powerful, very evil demonic force outside our world).

Normally, when we shoot a vlog, you film for about 8-10 minutes, and come up with 2 minutes of usable footage (assuming you edit).  When I put my video together, I had 12 minutes of stuff I could use, and had to cut from there.  Which was sad.  One of the things we try to do with the Rebels is keep our videos short, under 4 minutes.  And my vid was exactly 4 minutes long (although Youtube swears its 4:01).  So I had to cut a whole bunch of stuff: discussion about all different kinds of villains, four or five different versions of the “villain laugh”, and some of the back and forth between me and my supervillain.  He’s such a punk.

I Know Exactly What You’re Thinking

The bright side to writing your blog posts well in advance is that you don’t have to think about blogging for days and days.  And then you have something you want to say, and you forget what it’s like to actually WRITE a blog post all in one sitting.  That would be today.

So what’s been going on in my life this week?

I’ve been tackling things on my To Do list all week, and I’ve gotten down to what I think are the last 4 “main” items that need taken care of soon.  Two of which are relating to my edits and deadline things (which isn’t until July, but really I’m almost done anyway).  One’s not really a MAJOR thing that needs done, just something I want to check off so that I’m not always thinking “gee, I really need to get that done so I stop thinking about it.”  Yes, in my internal monologues, I use the word “gee.”  I also use “humdinger” “nifty” and “boss.”  As in “this book is really boss.”

My internal monologue is clearly written by a seventy year old man.

I cannot stop sneezing.  I’ve been sneezing for two days.  I think it’s safe to say I’m either allergic to author questionnaires, or the finale of book 1 (which I’ve been tweaking a little).

I finally – FINALLY – finished editing my video for Villains week on the Rebels.  That’ll go up sometime tomorrow, and I’ll post something with a link in it tomorrow.  I spent far, far, far too much time working on this video.  Now I’m just thankful that I’m done with it. 🙂

Supernatural and Vampire Diaries ended last night.  I’m way more depressed that TVD is done, though, since I think in terms of overall seasons, TVD had a WAY stronger season overall.  Supernatural this year was so hit or miss that it really bums me out.  The last two seasons of Supernatural had finales that had me buzzing for days afterword.  This one was simply…okay.  Plus, Vampire Diaries had a MUCH cooler final twist.

I got the final, signed, totally final version of my contract back yesterday.  That was so awesome.  Not only does it have MY signature, but it’s also signed by the President of Llewellyn, which is the bigger company that Flux is a part of.

And finally, a snippet of a scene from a book that I haven’t really started writing yet (okay, there’s a first chapter, but it’s still a little fragmented).  But this stretch of conversation popped into my head this morning, so I HAD to drop everything and write it down.  You know how it is.

“Looks like you need some help,” he said, flashing me his Wheaties smile and twirling the stick in his hand.   “But let me take care of our friends here, first.”

The zombies continue to advance.  Up close, I realize they all look identical.  Really old, really desiccated.  They could have been triplets.  Except no one had ever heard of triplet zombies.

It took me a minute to recognize the weapon he was swinging around so confidently.  “A hockey stick,” I ask, aghast.  “You’re going to fight them off with a hockey stick?  Are they Canadian zombies?”

Hope you guys have a great weekend!

Inspiration and annoying wind.

This week on the YA Rebels we talk about inspiration.  What inspires you, who inspires you.  So I go to abandoned buildings and into the middle of nowhere to bring you the hard hitting journalism you’ve come to known and love.

Or okay, I wander around trying to come up with good examples that help me make a good video.  Or at least give me something to be sarcastic about. 😉

New Blog Layout and Ideas Vlog

So I went ahead and switched up the layout of my blog. It was just one of those “I need a change” moments, and I’d already gotten a haircut, so the next obvious choice was to overhaul the blog. Which I…started to do. I rewrote the WITCH EYES summary on the “About My Books” tab up above, and its a little closer to something I like. I’ll be so happy when the book has cover copy, so I can just use that instead.

Also, this week on the YA Rebels we talked ideas, and where the inspiration for our current works came from. My video is a mess – that warning about adult language is serious, kiddos. Parental discretion advised. I cut out about 5 minutes of rambling though, since I figured no one wanted to watch that. It all started with the great “need good lighting” hunt of the early afternoon, which resulted in…well, just watch the video.