faith, trust, and CampNaNo pixie dust

Once upon a time, in 2017, I wrote a post called “Customizing CampNaNoWriMo.” I decided to dig out that post today, because it’s that time again!

Here’s a bit of it…

I’m here to tell you that there’s no better feeling than NaNoWriMo fueled months. I assume most of you probably know about the National Novel Writing Month challenge that takes place every November? The basic gist of it is, you have to write 50,000 words in 30 days. But have you heard of Camp NaNoWriMo? Camp NaNoWriMo takes place two months out of the year, once in April and once in July. The main difference between NaNoWriMo and Camp NaNoWriMo is that it’s completely customizable. You can choose what kind of project you want to work on: a novel, poetry, a play, etc., and you can also choose between setting a word count goal, page goal, lines, hours, and so on.

WriterChristineMarie.com March 2017

When I wrote that post I was in the midst of working on two projects. Now, I guess you could say I’m doing the same. I’m working on some revisions of my YA Fantasy novel and…I’m starting grad school! Yep, starting July 8th I’ll be starting my Masters in Library Science program.

I can’t wait! With that said, I won’t be participating in CampNaNoWriMo officially this year, but I do have a simple weekly goal of setting aside creative writing time at least three times a week. I think that will be manageable, even with my courses. For all of you who are participating, I wish you all the luck and pixie dust in the world!

You got this! Happy Writing!

Tweet me your thoughts @AWritersWay. Thank you for joining me here today. You can look for a new post next Friday.

Until next time,

Christine

a tiny update

Greetings fellow creative folk! I hope you had a fantastic week and made progress in whatever you are working on.

This week has led me to some new revisions. While I thought that I was ready for the query stage, I discovered a few things I’d like to add to my manuscript. There are also a few things I’d like to tweak a bit.

I suppose it’s better to discover these things now rather than later. All in all, I’m looking at this next revision as a positive thing.

So, just a short update for today, but an update none the less! May magical creativity fairies visit you in your dreams.

Until next time,

Christine

what I learned from reading Matilda at age 30

Confession time: As much as I absolutely love reading, there is quite a long list of books in which I have watched the movie version first. Most of that habit happened when I was a kid. As an adult, I’ve gone back and read some book versions of the movies I’ve loved. 

This year, my Summer reading list is different than other years. You see, it all started with Matilda. I was scrolling through my Libby app looking for a new audiobook to listen to. Having just finished, The Cruel Prince, by Holly Black, my natural reaction was to head for The Wicked King. However, there was a considerably long wait. So, I added myself to that list and began to browse. That’s when I stumbled upon Matilda, by Roald Dahl. 

I have seen the movie version of Matilda roughly, fifty times. Don’t ask me why I had never picked up the book. It doesn’t matter now! Why? Because I simply devoured it upon falling into the whimsical world that Roald Dahl creates. I think Matilda, the film, was awesome. The book is ten times better. 


Here’s the thing about experiencing children’s books when you’re 30. You have a whole new perspective on life. Even if you have read Matilda in the past, reading it now, is a completely different story. I was simply enchanted by the content. My passion for children’s literature definitely helps…

One moment, which truly inspired this blog post, was this quote below: 

“So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.” 

-Roald Dahl, Matilda

I stopped reading after coming across the passage. I thought about all of the times that a book had proven to be such a memorable companion in my life. I contemplated how long my personal list of books that have left me nurtured would be. With a smile on my face, I was happy to add Matilda to that list.

So, what does it all come down to? I ask you to take a moment and consider the books that have truly been a companion to you. Jot down those titles for the days that might be tough. I ask you to pick up a children’s book to read, even if you feel like you’ve outgrown them. You never know what lessons you can still learn from them.

Tweet me your thoughts @AWritersWay. Thank you for joining me here today. You can look for a new post next Friday.

Until next time,

Christine

books, books, and more books!

What’s better than a weekend of books with your best friend? Well, nothing! Last weekend brought Book Con 2019 to NYC and I was lucky enough to go thanks to the lovely lady pictured below.

While there were so many wonderful moments, I wanted to share 5 things I loved about Book Con 2019!

One: You really can’t beat being surrounded by books, people who love books, and book merchandise.

Two: I love seeing promotions for upcoming releases. This one had be squeal a bit. They are such funny picture books. The Crayons’ Christmas by Drew Daywalt will release on October 15th.

Three: Listening to authors talk about what inspired their work was very memorable. Evangeline Lilly, author of The Squickerwonkers series, shared how she wanted to write for her childhood self.

Four: Listening to authors nerd out about their love for books in general is pretty cool too. Neil Patrick Harris did just that.

Five: (Which is probably my most loved moment!)…and then there are those authors that you just totally black out when you meet. My best friend and I had recently just finished reading all of the Shades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab. We wanted to meet her, but the whole digital ticket, ticket line, extensive process was too much. So, we figured we would see her at a panel and be satisfied with that. Then, something magical happened. We stumbled upon an additional signing, were invited to a line with five people in front of us, and met her!!! Yes, I blacked out. No, I don’t remember what I said, but it doesn’t matter. I have her autograph and this photo!

All in all, it was the best Book Con I could have asked for. We had a fantastic time and I highly recommend doing it at least once! You never know what exciting things are going to happen while you’re there.

Tweet me your thoughts @AWritersWay. Thank you for joining me here today. You can look for a new post next Friday.

Until next time,

Christine

spring smiles

Happy Sunday to all. I’m back! What have I been up to? Well, a lot! Here’s what’s happened in the last two weeks…

It’s been pretty amazing. I feel so lucky! Here are some photos from our engagement:

Love, love, love!

So, back to my blogging update! New posts will be moved to Friday’s now. Yep, that’s right. Even if it’s only one sentence, you can look forward to a new post from me every week once again!

I hope you have a glorious week. See you Friday!

New Posts Will Be Back Soon

…and by that I mean….

All of my free time is currently going to be dedicated to writing, reading, and/or recharging. I‘ll be back to a steady blog schedule in the Spring, but for now…it’s hibernation time.

Thank you for stopping by WriterChristineMarie.com.

Feel free to tweet me @AWritersWay, where I will continue to share updates on my writing and many Disney gifs.

Until next time,

Christine

bits of writing advice from bookcon 2018

Last weekend I was fortunate enough to dive into the world of books in a different way than I normally do. I attended BookCon in NYC. BookCon is basically a giant convention complete with publishers, fandom, best-selling authors and all the things a bookworm would love. This was my first time attending BookCon. While I had attended Book Expo America a few years ago in the same location, I felt that the vibe of BookCon was way more fan-based (in a good way.)

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For this week’s blog post I thought it would be interesting to share some bits of writing advice that I scribbled down while sitting through many different panels. Basically, they were little moments that stuck with me and inspired me. How could I not share them with you?

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Cassandra Clare is the best-selling author of The Mortal Instruments, The Dark Artifices, and more. When asked about how a writer incorporates personal experience into their own writing, she shared:

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“You may not pull the real life actions, but you will pull the emotions. It has to feel real.” –

That last bit there, “it has to feel real,” that’s the bit that stuck with me. Sometimes I think we get really caught up in what our characters are going through and try and get the difficult scene down on the page without thinking about how an outside reader will actually feel when reading it. That advice came at the right time for me as I was working on a very emotional scene in my WIP.

Cassandra also discussed villains and what makes them well-written. One of the things she brought up that I found fascinating was a point about minions that follow a villain. Why do these minions follow the evil character with the horrid plans? What is their motivation and what makes it something worth supporting? Funnily enough, that advice was also fitting for the scene in my WIP. Don’t forget about the details of your villain.

Brandon Sanderson is the best-selling author of many high fantasy novels that take place in the Cosmere universe. When asked about writing a character with magical powers, Sanderson commented:

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“’What can’t the magic do?’ is always the more interesting question. What are the flaws of these powers?” – 

I scribbled fast for this one. It is important to not only focus on how wonderful magic can be, but what are the cons that come with it? What are the limitations? When I worked on a young adult fantasy novel many years ago, I gifted a character with fantastic fire powers. They had absolutely no consequences or limitations to them. I was just an excited, new writer who wanted to write a fantasy novel. Years later, I now see that is one of the many reasons why that novel didn’t work out.

Victoria Aveyard is the best-selling author of the Red Queen novels and I will say that many of the fans cheered extra loud for her when she walked on the stage. I always enjoy fan questions as opposed to the commentator’s questions because they are usually amusing. One 15-year old fan asked, “What advice would you give to your 15 year old self?” Aveyard answered:

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“What makes you weird now is going to be what makes you successful later.” –

I think as writers, it’s sometimes easy to forget how important it is to celebrate our unique qualities. We should all celebrate our weirdness, follow our passions, and write about what makes our heart race! Don’t you agree?

Mindy-Inspirational

I hope that some of these bits of writing advice resonate with you on some level. For me, hearing writers talk about writing is one of the things that fills my inspiration meter.

Thanks for joining me here today. Tweet me your thoughts @AWritersWay. Remember, you can join me here every Thursday for new posts!

Until next time,

Christine