Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Brain Storm Draft

It's almost the end of April. Thanks a lot, Time, for leaving me in the dust. This means I should almost be done with a 100-page script for Script Frenzy. I'm on page 86. I think I can do this. I know I can. It's not like I'm writing a good script. The story doesn't make a whole lot of sense. The characters are pretty flat and boring at this point. This is what I call "My Brain Storm Draft." It's not Draft One. It's only the Brain Storm Draft where I allow myself to change character names halfway through, change settings several times, and write little notes to myself and create scenes that have no purpose whatsoever expect to get my fingers moving and words flowing. I would never, ever show this to anyone. It's a complete mess.

But this method really works for me. I use it while writing flash fiction pieces (which I highly recommend trying. I think, I hope, maybe, I'm getting a feel for my voice through these stories). I just write and see what comes out. And I surprise myself a lot. Yesterday, I finally found the ending I wanted for my script. I work better knowing the ending. I feel like I'm floating aimlessly if I don't know where I'm headed. Maybe that's why I've had trouble with my current WIP, a YA paranormal, because the ending was never clear to me. If the ending changes, everything changes. And that's a ton of rewriting. I know rewriting can't be avoided. It's actually one of my favorite parts because this is where I can finally make sentences sound pretty and fatten up my characters. But I want general plot nailed down in the first few drafts. If not, then I might be writing forever and, that sounds lovely and all, but I do eventually want people to read it!

I did the Brain Storm Draft for my novel, too, although a bit more restrained than the script and flash fiction. It takes more time but I think wonderful things come out of it. But on my next book, I'm going to write the ending first and see how that works out. I'm just glad I've got new ideas waiting on the horizon!

Next up: YA Paranormal Revisions

Next up: YA Novel Contemporary Romance

Next up: Short stories and flash fiction

Next up: Romantic Comedy Screenplay

What do you have on your writing plate?Are you all over the place like me? Or do you tend to focus on one story at a time?

Friday, April 23, 2010

Will Grayson, Will Grayson

I went to a book signing last night! I saw John Green and David Levithan. =)

They signed my book:

John Green basically lives in my backyard. Not really. But we live in the same city. Fingers crossed he has some leftover awesome writing vibes he can magically send over the highway, down my street, and through my writing window. I won't mention (okay, I am mentioning it) that first I went to the wrong Borders and asked the clerk, "Is there another Borders around here?" to which he replied "Miss, you're in a Borders." I blinked. I stared blankly. And then I realized that it doesn't matter what my hair color is (no longer a blond) because apparently I look incredibly dumb. On the way to the actual Borders where the actual John Green and the actual David Levithan were signing, my husband says, "I hope you realize you are in a car." Yes. I did. Thank you.

I'll be reading Will Grayson, Will Grayson this weekend. I'm looking forward to it because the sky plans to release a little rain Saturday and Sunday. These two authors are very funny together (I finally made it, late, which put me at the back of the line for signing but that was okay because they are lightning fast signers; there is a system). I felt like I was watching a stand up comedy show. They answered wonderful questions (I, um, stood quietly in the back) and John Green's wife was there and helped with the reading, and John Green's new baby, Henry, made an appearance and he was so cute and adorable and everyone awwwwwwwed.

And that was my book-filled, lovely evening. We also picked up Avatar. Did you know this is the Number One Movie of ALL TIME. Score!

Happy Reading!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Why I Write

I write because it fills me up. I don't know how, exactly, I'm no scientist. But each word is a little scoop of something delicious, a dribbling ice cream cone, a sweetness, that fills something inside of me that nothing else really can. I am hungry and bored without it. Yes, I could go without, I could stop and still be content and happy, maybe pick up painting or knitting or buy a motorcycle, writing is not an addiction or a necessity, it is not my water, although it feels that way sometimes, but why would I want to stop feeding myself wonderful words and stories? Writing allows me to view the world in wild, unusual, and nonstandard ways. It's like that giant dial-thing that looks like glasses fit for an owl, of which I do not know the technical term, at the eye doctor's office. The doctor clicks the little thingie and says, "What's better? One or two?" And as she clicks, your vision changes. What's better, writing or not writing? I could get by without it but the world will always look a little stilted, a little blurry, not quite as sharp.

Writing has led me to great, great books that I might have otherwise thrown to the back burner. I'm constantly binging on words. I've found a new love for flash fiction. I'm searching for my voice. I'm always searching. I may never get published. I may never be validated as a writer. That's not what I need. I am happy without those things. I have always been happy in the shadows and that, knowing myself a bit, will never change.

Writing fills me up. I continue to eat, eat, eat until my mind is bloated.

Why do you write? If you knew for certain that you would never get published, would you still do write?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


I love ARCS. I don't know why. But I DO!

Cindy Pon is holding a contest for not one, but two, ARCS! Go check it out!


Monday, April 19, 2010


I'm here! And slightly behind on many things. I need to catch up on blogs and post that post I said I would post on Friday.

I did that thing I always do. I bit off more than I could chew so I am playing catch up! And my wrist hurts from writing and typing and writing and typing. I am getting the tunnel thing...ouch...ouch...ouch!

Here's an Izzieism (my dog's philosophies) for your Monday afternoon:

Enjoy Life! Chew on a Stick!

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Oh, gosh. I am so stressed and busy and stressed and headaches and sentences that make no sense...

I promise a post so massively fun tomorrow that I can't even write it at work...

I'll leave you with that, my dear friends!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Performance Evaluation

It's that time of year again!

It's time to fill out my self-evaluation at work. Yes, such is the life of a corporate drone. April sort of sucks thanks to the end of that fiscal year. Boo.

I stared at the blank form, desperately resisting the urge to fill it out in verse, and began to think about what my self-evaluation as a writer would look like (my mind tends to sink into wanderlust as I sit in my cubicle...) What are my objectives for this next fiscal year? Flesh out those characters? Find my voice? Flesh out that main character? Work on that pacing? Learn some freaking grammar?

What did I do write (ha. ha. get it?) this past year? Where did I improve? What could I continue to work on? What didn't go exactly as planned?

Well, a lot didn't go as planned. But that could be a good thing or a bad thing. One of my favorites parts of writing is the unexpected. Uh, where did that character come from? How did that plot twist suddenly pop into my head? OH! OH! OH! New SHINY IDEA!

Then again, the unexpected could be bad. This, for me, usually pertains to timing.

"I'll get the first draft done in November and revise in December and January and be ready for a quick polish at the beginning of February and then query time! Woo Hoo!"

Massive amounts of plot holes poked at my writing road and rejections and life and pressure that I put completely on myself brought me down. I've taken that pressure away and I'm much happier. Why did I do that to myself?

Note for improvement: Lighten Up, Lisa. Lighten Up!

Bottom Line: As long as I keep improving and learning, everything's okay.

Note for improvement: Don't forget to go outside every now and then. Look at the sky. It's very pretty this time of year.

Monday, April 12, 2010


Does it matter what font you write in? Does that somehow effect your writing?

It seems like the last thing I should be worrying about. And I'm not really worrying, really, but during my massive rewrite I switched out of the oh-so-boring Times New Roman. It's much more fun now to look at the words.

But when I send this puppy out for people to read, I'll switch back to the standard. I just can't stand looking at Times New Roman anymore. I feel like I'm writing a term paper and maybe that's why my writing isn't engaging enough.


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Love, Love, Love

I've stopped querying now. Oh, I still have quite a few on my list left but I need to focus on my writing. My writing is missing something and as much as I love my story and WANT to send it out into the world, it's too early now and I wish I had waited from the start. When we're in love, we want everyone to know it and know it NOW. But I'm not trying again until I feel it's ready. Until other people have read it and given their opinions and until...until...I don't know. But I need more time!

Until I fall in love with it all over again.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Beta Readers!

I'm reaching out for some beta readers! Woo Hoo! I'm excited to start working with some great writers.


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

New Projects

Hey, Butler played a great game. Maybe next year. This time the giant wins again. Boo.

I've been thinking about my next project. I've been bouncing around with several ideas that range from YA Paranormal again (this would be my third go in this genre) to YA Contemporary Romance to YA Romantic Comedy to Women's Fiction to Middle Grade Fantasy to Middle Grade Contemporary...I'm all over thee place. I wouldn't mind trying a Horror novel either. I love Horror.

As I revise my last project, basically just picking at it, and write a screenplay for The Frenzy, I can't decide what I want to do next! I'm having a blast with the screenplay which I'm pretty sure I'm behind on according to the page count. I need to write 3.3 pages a day. I'm at 15. Maybe just a page or so behind, not counting today. I am not surprised by this. I tend to think bigger than I can actually do. The screenplay is quite a mess but I think I like writing that way. Just get it out. Get the events on the page, hit the main plot points, and worry about editing later. I've always struggled with this as I want to pick, pick, pick as I go along.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to this month. I love the weather. I love the weekends. And I love the possibilities that come with a new story.

The air tastes berry-sweet these days. I really can't complain.

Thursday, April 1, 2010


I'm doing it. I'm participating in Script Frenzy, a challenge to hammer out a 100-page script in a month. Um...I think I could probably do this in about half that time. Not a GOOD screenplay but, you know, words on the page. I've written a few screenplays before I tried noveling (I enjoy making up words. BAM! It's a word now. Noveling. Use it in a sentence today).

I've participated in NaNo month for the last few years. I succeeded twice and failed once, last year when I decided to take my time. This screenplay thing SOUNDS like a piece of cake compared to 50,000 words. I've got a story. I've got my main character. I'm ready to just let myself go and write a movie! Action! Be prepared for a future whiny post about hitting that wall in the second act.

Over the next few weeks I'll also continue working on revising my WIP which is a YA paranormal comedy. I'm going chapter by chapter. Step by step. No rush at all. I've got a million ideas for other stories. I'm writing some flash fiction. Yeah. I'm kind of all over the freaking place these days.

Same with my reading! I'm reading, count 'em, FIVE books right now. I think I need to chill out.

Blame the FRENZY!