Pronunciation Guide

Saturday, April 27, 2013

You will not be written or killed

…Okay. I’m sorry, but I kind of have to vent. I keep seeing these things on facebook [I know, I know; I should ignore them; it’s just stupid facebook] that are supposed to be, like, writer’s humor. …Things that say something along the lines of, “Beware of making me angry; you’ll show up in my next novel!” or, “Don’t make me mock you in my next novel!”…and the like.

Now, I am not saying that no writer has ever done that. Perhaps it is “normal” for a writer to “get revenge” on someone by writing them as a character, and then killing them or something.

But in case you are afraid that I will do this to you…or in case you have the misconception that this is what I do…or in case you think it’d be funny to tease me about me doing this…let’s just get some things straight, okay? =) [I am not as aggravated as I might sound, I promise!]

I have never based any character, in any story, off of any person that I actually know. Not in personality, and not really in appearance either. [The one exception to this is myself; in my elf story, my girl character is essentially me…but even then, not entirely. I am nowhere near that stubborn. ;) ;) …Haha!] I don’t know why this is, exactly…it just isn’t how I come up with characters. …It just isn’t.

…Now, I have taken certain characteristics [personality- and appearance-wise] of people I that know and added them into a character’s personality [key word there is “added”]…but that is pretty much it. And I don’t even do that very often. [Sorry to disappoint!]

In this same vein, I have never --- and would never --- create a character based on a real-life enemy for the sole purpose of enacting revenge on that person by means of the story. …Um, I admit that I am twisted, but I’m not twisted like that. If I have an issue with someone, I will either tell them about it, or let it go; I do not seek revenge in any form. And even if I did, I certainly wouldn’t seek revenge by writing my enemy into my story so I could kill them. Why not? Well…

…I have an extremely hard time killing any characters at all. Even bad, sick, terrible characters. …I’m dead serious when I say that I want to save EVERYONE. I’m a sucker for happy endings. I have purposefully not read books before because I knew they wouldn’t end happily. […I may or may not sometimes usually read the end of a book first…] I dislike war movies because everyone usually dies; I boycotted Gladiator for several years because of how it ended. I want everyone to be redeemed, everyone to be happy and alive…and everyone to be good. I want everyone to be reconciled with everyone else, I want the bad guys to have changed their ways…and darn it, if a couple is in love --- especially if part of the story revolves around their relationship --- they better be together at the end! [And alive!]

But even beyond that…I take my writing very seriously. [Maybe too seriously, or maybe not seriously enough?] I respect my writing, what my mind creates. I understand that words have the power of life and death. I believe my writing is a gift…and it isn’t for me to write something that allows me to control and kill characters who represent people that I don’t like. I feel that writing a disliked person into a story so the writer can enact some form of psychological revenge on that person is extremely distasteful, vindictive, and demeaning…and I do not want to be any of those things.

So…the end. =) You can rest easy now.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Eeeeeepness!

WELL.

I think I have finally figured it out, how the group of characters gets into a certain place, and what happens while they are there. [That description makes it sound painfully boring.]

This is just the synopsis though…so when I actually write it, I will see how it all fits. NO plot-holes. None. Nada. Zippo. …Hippo.

Oh, wait, we aren’t trying to rhyme.

But OHMYGOSH…if I have this part…do you know what that means?!

…Not a whole lot, for book one, admittedly. …I mean, it is, but it won’t be a lot of the story, because of how I am writing it. Which may not be the way you think when you read that. I can’t explain though; you’ll just have to wait and see. All five of you that read this. ;)

It is insane though. In the course of maybe three minutes, like five thousand different things happen. ALL. AT. ONCE. Eek. That will be fun to write…

Wow my head hurts a lot right now. I am going to go to bed.

I leave you with this lovely, tiny screenshot. I assure you that there are words underneath the black; I am just paranoid. Goodnight!


Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Got it!

WHAT?! Two posts in one day!? Who am I?!

Well. I am someone who figured out how to do what she was trying to figure out earlier today. Yep, that’s right. And it fits with other ideas that I came up with yesterday/the other day. SO…that is awesome.

I am going to work on it now. I just wanted to say this. Toodles. =)

Pizza smells so good...and gum IS so good

…That title has absolutely nothing to do with the content of this post. But I just walked into the kitchen, past pizza boxes from last night, to get some gum…and…tada! A post title!

Now that that is out of the way, I will say this: Yesterday, I thought I’d figured out something crucial. My heart leapt in excitement…and then crashed down as I realized it cannot happen. Not even slightly. I won’t give things away, but…basically…I have a group of people who need to go to a certain place. And I don’t know how they are going to get there. My idea was to have this other person help them…but that can’t happen, because the group of people does not know this person yet. And I can’t just have them know each other another way; they do not meet this person until they have gone where they need to go. Does that make sense? …The person and the group meet AFTER the group has gotten to the place, not before. It is because they are in that place that they meet the person at all. And I mean, I could change that…but I really, really like how they meet; it is redemptive, and if it doesn’t happen in that way, it will just…not be as redemptive. So, in order to keep the coolness…that person cannot help them get there.

…Bummer.

So, I still do not know how that all happens…how the group gets to that place. My original idea for it [for one of the group of people to be the one to get them there]…I just don’t know if it will work or not. It seems…like it wouldn’t. But maybe…??

I don’t know.
I don’t know. Ack!

And this --- unlike most of the other ideas that I stress about not having figured out --- is actually [gasp!] in book one. So, like…I need to figure it out relatively soon.

And I also need to take a shower. …And pray. …I am so bad. Sigh. Sometimes I just don’t want to think, you know?

…In other news, I read through some older story ideas today, and I about had a meltdown for two characters because they were in town at night. Like, I was literally beginning to panic for them. Don’t misunderstand; I knew that I was in a different story. The dialogue was very different, and the font was as well. I didn’t get confused about what story I was looking at. …I am just so programmed toward thinking that characters cannot be out after dusk that I just…

I don’t know.
I am weird.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Hope deferred, and a non-happy birthday

Well, the last few days have been a bit of a blur. [Yay for alliterations ha!] Long story short…I worked a bit, went to a healing seminar, my car died, my dad and husband put in a new fuel pump [thank you!!]…and now my car is back to normal.

I want to talk about the healing seminar. …Well, I’m not sure if I really want to talk about it, but I am going to.

I have had a constant headache for almost eight years; in that time, it has never gone away for even a minute. The intensity has fluctuated, but there is always some level of pain. I cannot pinpoint the day that it took hold and didn’t let go…but I know it was the spring/summer before I turned eighteen.

For those nearly-eight years, I have thought many different things about it…pursued many dead-ends in trying to relieve it. Among these attempts are numerous times where people have prayed for me, over me. The headache remains…and I’ve lately begun to see that maybe it isn’t supposed to go away.

But I went to this healing seminar because I told my friend[s] I would go. I didn’t want to go, not really. I am not really sure what I think about that kind of stuff; I totally believe that God can heal, does heal…has the power to heal. But I’ve seen it misused so many times, seen it distorted…had people tell me things that…it just…sigh. I am cynical, bottom line. I want proof --- and to me, honestly, proof is not just someone saying it. It isn’t enough for a stranger to say that they had cancer, and that God miraculously healed them two minutes ago as the speaker prayed. It isn’t even enough for them to take off their cast-boot-thing and say that their broken foot was healed. How do I know they weren’t faking it? That their foot was actually broken, and now is actually healed? I’ve never seen that person before in my life.

…So I told God ahead of time that if he wanted to heal me there…he’d have to make it utterly clear that the guy was talking to ME. Like, the speaker would have to know something about me and my situation that NO ONE but God would know; that way, I could believe that God was truly speaking to him about it, and that I wasn’t manipulating it.

Because I fully believe God can heal, in an instant. But I am tired of trying to manipulate things to be something that they are not. I am still reeling from doing that several years ago, and I am sick of it. And I am tired of getting my hopes up. I believed I could be healed, but I wanted to be sure that God was talking to me. …With me so far?

Anyway, so at this healing seminar, they never said anything --- not one thing --- about anyone with headaches, or a headache. But through a turn of events, I ended up having the main guy pray for/over me. Several times. …And…the headache did not go away. I felt nothing change, or diminish…or move…or anything. Nothing happened.

And though I had expected it…assumed it…to be honest, I was discouraged. I was disappointed. I was frustrated. I was angry that I’d let myself get my hopes up, even for just a split second…for I KNEW that I would not be healed. God has more or less brought me to the conclusion that, for right now, I am going to have the headache. Period. For me…this is what it is. Doesn’t matter who is praying, or how many other people around me are being healed…God has pretty much said that the headache will remain for now. So I knew I shouldn’t hope, shouldn’t think that it would happen for me. …But I did. And I am still mad at myself.

Because I’m tired of going through this. I’m tired of hoping, of letting my heart rise in tentative anticipation…only to be let down. Again. I don’t want to expect God to do something great, something miraculous, because if he doesn’t…then…I’ve just stepped off the stairs in the dark and missed the final step. And that is not a good feeling.

I live as a practical agnostic…believing that God will move in the lives of others [usually with very little effort on their part, grr], but preparing myself to fend for myself when he doesn’t move in my life. In my heart, my stance is essentially this: “God, I know you could do this…but I don’t really think you will. So I am just going to sort of go ahead as if you aren’t going to do anything. If you do come through, awesome. If you don’t, well…I already have plan B in place, so…”

…Out of one side of my mouth, I ask God to do the miraculous…but out of the other side, I whisper, “…But just in case you don’t, I’m going to act as if you aren’t. That way, if/when you don’t…I won’t be disappointed. I’ll be prepared. …I won’t lose my footing.”

And so I am suffering not from a headache that won’t go away…but from a spirit of disappointment…of disillusionment. …Of hope deferred.

…The bottom line is this, probably the most insidious thing Satan ever told me: …The lie that I will have to fight for myself, because no one else will. The lie that God does not have my back, that in my moment of greatest need…he, and everyone else, will abandon me to face the onslaught alone.

[I have a point to this, I promise. …I think.]


Yesterday was my main character’s birthday. No spoilers here. …Let’s just say her birthday was not a happy day for her. In fact, the first like…three and a half books of this story will not be happy for her. [Or…maybe…four… …There are only four books.] There will be moments of happiness…but there are many more moments of darkness, of despair…of hope deferred. Of her steeling herself to not hope, so she won’t be disappointed when life doesn’t work out for her. But she keeps hoping…and so she keeps enduring disappointment.

And yet, as her creator and author…I know how it all turns out. I see how it will fit together, even if she doesn’t see it yet. I know that it doesn’t end for her in the pits of despair, in that awful dungeon. It doesn’t end with her alone, in a field, with no one aware of her existence or demise. …I can put her through hell because I know that there is still life for her. A purpose. A purpose that will not only not discount what she has endured…but hinge on it. Use it. …Redeem it. …All of it.

…And so with this headache stuff…I don’t know…I just kind of feel like God is having me go through it for a reason. Not just going through the physical pain, but all of the emotional/spiritual stuff that accompanies it. In doing so…I am feeling what she will feel. I am living what she will live. I am going through what she goes through --- the struggle of disappointment, the pain of dashed hopes…the anguish of believing no one will have my back or fight for me.

If I am honestly going to take her [and other characters] through this journey of redemption, of hopelessness to hope…then I myself must live it. I must endure disillusionment and the struggle to hope…so that I can be genuine with her struggle. I must experience the darkness of night…in order to show the joy of seeing the dawn. Of seeing the stars coming out. Of seeing beauty after destruction…redemption of the seemingly irredeemable.

Of life after pain.
And hope after disappointment.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Even minier update

Fastest update ever.

I think I just figured out a couple of things, namely who will be the “advocate” that I’ve been needing for a certain character. Yay for this! …Seriously.

I won’t say to always go with your gut…but a lot of times, it is right. =)

And in this case, making this certain guy a certain something…adds a lot of interesting stuff to that whole set of characters.

…I am cruel to my characters. So mean.

That is all.
 

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Mini update

I haven’t really written anything in my actual story lately. BUT…I have been working on my short story collection, getting it ready to publish! =) It is pretty much finished. I just need a couple more things…and then it will be complete, and I can take the next steps toward publishing!!

…Um…that is kind of all I have to say right now; I am not feeling too hot and might go to bed soon. There are some things I want to write about, but this isn’t really the place for it; they aren’t exactly story-related, and I can’t figure out how to make them story-related.

SO…I shall just post this, and that is all. The end. Goodbye. Ha!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Something about men, I guess?

The other day, I was reading through a part in my story. I wanted to write a blog about it then, but it just wasn’t coming out, and I didn’t have a lot of time to mess with it. I’m still struggling to figure out how to say it…so let’s just go with this:

I have a lot of very…um…“bad” men in my story. Selfish, abusive, cruel, hateful…careless men. The lyrics to this song [by Thrice] sort of sum them up:


“You were built for blessing but you only make them bleed --- 
but you don’t care, you don’t care.
And bruises are but shadows of the blackness that you breed --- 

but you don’t care, you don’t care.
The light that’s left inside their eyes is darkened day by day --- 

but you don’t care, you don’t care.
Your presence pulls the color from the world till all is grey --- 

but you don’t care…
…You don’t, you don’t, you don’t.

Cause you are less than half a man, yellow belly and crimson hands.
You will one day reap your reckoning; maybe then you’ll understand.

Your hands were made to comfort, though they only conjure fear --- 

but you don’t care, you don’t care.”


Pretty much the first time I heard this song --- really heard it --- it made me think of all the guys I have that go to the inn. And it made me think of guys in general. …But for a different reason. …I’ll explain. [I think.]

The inn-guys don’t care. They are the ones that are going to do what they want, without any regard for the anguish and horror and destruction they’ll leave in their wake. The ones that go against their true design, who use their strength for violence and selfishness and cruelty. They are, at the core, men who have given in to a very dark form of cowardice --- a cowardice that seeks only to please itself, and very often at the expense of others. [And it doesn’t have to be in a sexually abusive way, as it is in my story. A man who hides from his family is denying his design just as much as a man who attacks his. …As is a man who pretends to love a woman in exchange for sex, but has no intention of ever marrying her or truly being with her. …Among a thousand other examples.]

There are many people in the world who view men as bad. Who view their strength and often natural bent toward aggression and violence as bad…something to discourage, to prevent. Who want to emasculate them, tame them, lock them all up. …Who want to make them “safe”. [By the way, this has NOTHING to do with personality. This is about design.]

…I cannot stand this mindset. It makes me want to scream. …Seriously, I can feel my hands itching to clench into fists even as I write this.

…In some [misguided] respects, I can see why many have come to this conclusion. After all, men commit more violent crimes than women. Men act out in aggression more than women. Most of the prisoners throughout the world are men. Men seem angrier on the whole than women. …But to me, this is not a sign of men themselves being bad…but of good strength gone wrong.

What if men were made stronger and more aggressive…to be a blessing to the people in their lives, to the world? To use that strength to do the opposite of the guy in that song?  To use that strength to bring light, to bring hope, to bring life? To use their hands to comfort…to protect…to uphold those around them instead of tearing them down?

What if men weren’t meant to be safe…but good? What if “safe” is NOT synonymous with “good”?

What if what this world needs…are some really dangerous and really good men to step up and fight for their wives? their children? their families? for justice? for truth?

…This is one thing that I very much want to show in my story --- that men are GOOD. That strength is not inherently bad --- it is what you DO with that strength. …That even those who have been terrible, who have been abusive, destructive, violent…who have used their strength for evil purposes…can change and use their strength for good. …Hands that once conjured only fear…can become hands of comfort. …For there is redemption.

I read something in a book a while back, and it has stuck with me. I don’t know exactly how the author phrases it, but it basically goes like this: “A scalpel is a dangerous instrument. It is sharp, and it could kill you. …Or it could save your life. You don’t make it safe by making it dull; you put it in the hands of someone who knows what they are doing with it.” [Resisting the urge to find this in the book…resisting the urge…resisting…]

…Men are like scalpels. You don’t make them safe by making them dull [by emasculating them, criminalizing them, condemning them, rejecting them]. …You put them in the hands of someone [God] who knows what he is doing.

…End spiel. =)

Saturday, April 6, 2013

I still hate math.

Well, yesterday, I went through all of my wars…figured out when they started and how long they really lasted. [In years, months, and weeks. Ack.] I completely fried my brain; way, way too much math for me. I just HAD to make it all confusing, and have different groups fighting in the same war, but at different times, and…

…Yeah I am not even going to get into it.

I finished at 2:37, then still had to put it on my flash drive [which takes a couple of minutes]…AND get ready for work. I had to be there at 3, and I live about twelve minutes away. …Do the math. I am done with math. [Not really. Some of today will consist of double- and triple- and quadruple-checking said math and making sure it is perfect. …Because that’s what I do.]

And when I say “get ready for work”, I’m talking everything but a shower [I’d taken one the night before]. I had to change into my work clothes and tuck my shirt in [which takes me way too long], brush and put up my atrociously messy hair [hadn’t brushed it at all since my shower last night, due to an experiment of mine], do makeup [eek], and brush my teeth [since I’d eaten lunch].

…And somehow, I managed to get to work earlier than I usually do. [Which is to say…on time.]

…Anywho.

Today, as I said, will involve some tweaking of the war timelines.

Why am I doing this, you ask, since it NEVER comes into the actual story?

Well! Because I am creating a world, not just a story. …And I…you know…have to know EVERYTHING

Annnd…I despise plot holes.

…That is all. =)

Friday, April 5, 2013

I hate math.

There won’t be anything philosophical or truly interesting about this post.

I have only a couple of hours before I have to go to work. Instead of delving [I apparently like this word?] into actual writing…I am going to do something I should have done a loooooong time ago:

…Fix my war stuff.

Meaning that I need to figure out and detail when each war began and ended, and how long, exactly, each one lasted. Years aren’t --- and never truly were --- good enough. [Years that they started/ended.] I need months, and what part of said months. [Beginning, middle, end.]

…Yep.

…Why am I so insane?

[Um, just as a little side note, there are sixty-one entries in my war documents. ALL of them need beginning month, updated duration, and ending month. …Yeah.]
 

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Oh yeah...I need a title. Um...this will suffice!

On facebook this morning, I saw a thing that said: “Writers must be fair and remember even bad guys (most of them, anyway) see themselves as good --- they are the heroes of their own lives.” I wrote some thoughts about it and reposted it…but I wanted to write an actual blog on the subject, because I believe in it very strongly, and it is a foundational part of my story.

…Okay. I have three main groups in my story --- humans, creatures, and other creatures; they are all, to put it mildly, enemies. When I began writing it, I knew I didn’t want it to be a good vs. evil thing; I didn’t want it to be so black and white. Gray is far more realistic, and even though it is fantasy, it MUST be realistic.

But, naturally, as I began delving into the world of the one creatures, I started seeing them as the “good guys”; and, consequently, I started looking at the humans as the “bad guys”. I planned to kill most of them at the end…and, honestly, I was very much fine with that. [And I do not easily kill characters.]

I’m not sure what happened first, but two things took place pretty close together: I decided to bring back a certain [human] guy, and I realized something about another.

…And that…blew everything out of the water.

As I thought more about the personalities of these two guys, I realized something about my humans on the whole:

They don’t think they are bad.

The vast majority of them believe they’re the good guys, that they are protecting their people, securing the future. They call themselves the saviors not so much because they are arrogant, but because they truly believe that that is what they are. They are brainwashed, horribly misguided…but they aren’t evil.

And this, truly, has changed everything. The entire plot of the story…is far different now than it was before.

And I am different now than I was before. I am living through what my characters will soon live through, discovering what they will discover --- that it is all about the heart. The humans and the creatures are the same, at the core.

…And I love them all. Like, I really, really love them. I hate what they are doing, hate what most of them are…but I love them. I want to save them all, and it truly saddens me to know that I can’t; to know that, if this story is to be realistic…I can’t have a happy ending where everyone is saved and they all live together in peace. [Sigh.] Some are too stubborn, too hurt, too angry, too prideful. Some will die in their refusal, just like real people will die refusing the redemption and life offered them.

…And the ones standing at the end…will be ones who have raped, murdered, deceived, stolen, been prideful, and been hateful. …Human and creature both.

Because it is not about the actions. It is about the heart.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

I so want to live in the forest.

Welp, I was being very consistent…and then I stopped.

But I haven’t really had anything blog-like to write about anyway.
I probably still don’t. Ha!

I went to the reserve today. Apparently being in the woods gives me ideas, because I recorded over twenty minutes of story thoughts to myself today as I walked.

…I am trying to share my thoughts on these thoughts…trying to relay the struggle I am facing. But I guess, at the core, it isn’t really a struggle. Maybe I am trying to make myself at war with myself, when I am really not.

The thing is this: I thought of a way to connect two dreams. But in order to do that, in that way, then this certain guy sort of takes on a God-like…ness. Like, in that moment, he is sort of the hands and feet of God…and I like that. I think. But at the same time, I am unsure if that is…well, best, for it to happen in that situation. With that guy.

…And I am being way too preemptive; this won’t come into the story until like book three. Dummy, stop stressing.

…Here is what I don’t want: I don’t want the relationship between my girl and that guy to be…misunderstood. I mean, I know that someone, somewhere, will misunderstand, and that’s fine; whatever. But I don’t want to send the wrong message. Misunderstanding must be on their part, not mine. Some people are not safe, and will never be safe; some people will not change. …But…some people do change. And I think I do a pretty good job of showing his…everything. How he was, and how he is now.

But he is not the love interest.
And he is not going to be the love interest.
…Yet…he becomes extremely important to her. In fact, at the moment…I know more about their relationship than I do the relationship between her and the love interest. And that is sort of fine, because this story is not about romance, but about redemption.

I just don’t want to send the message that she…I don’t know. Can’t choose between them, so she tries to have both? I am not trying to be _______ here. [I won’t name names. ;) ]

…So anyway. There is no resolution to this yet, so this is where I shall end it. Haha!