fireflys_locket: (Free Falling (Serah) - whispyr)
2017-02-18 08:32 pm
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The Destination is Important, Too

Health issues combined with continuing depression about life and the state of the world have made writing scarce these past few weeks. But I opened my windows today for the first time in ages, and I feel like I can breathe again. If you know me well, you'll know I'm not exactly a summer person. I get terribly overheated in the sun, keep my room fans all year, and wear a tank top and shorts if at all possible. (Seriously - middle of the winter, tank top and shorts.) But don't get me wrong, I don't particularly like winter, either. Snow is pretty from indoors, and luckily, I work from home and can stay out of it most of the time. I favor the in-between seasons. Spring and fall. More fall than spring these days, since the arrival of spring just makes me fear the summer and my birthday. But I love the breeze. Jane is an Air Element for a reason.

I just remembered this bit of advice I left when posting a song many years ago, and it still rings true: "And seriously, the biggest piece of advice I have for writers who are in the midst of a huge writer’s block, or have ideas but can't seem to get motivated enough to write... is open your window." Maybe some of you are more drawn to the scent of fresh earth or rain or the ocean, but I feel like most creative people have at least one major connection to nature. And it's good to reconnect.

Anyhow, I spent the day reading with the windows open, and I feel more alive than I have in a while. (I also packed up some copies of Magic Inc. for my next event!) Some of what I was reading was more Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. Bird by Bird does have some very interesting things to say about writing, and it's a pleasant read. But I'm only deeply connecting to bits and pieces and not the core of the lessons themselves. For instance, I love the idea that characters will form themselves and that you shouldn't betray their personalities for the sake of plot. Also, that you're more a typist for the story that exists out there in the ether or in some other unconscious part of the brain. But I've realized this book is far more a tool for Pantsers than Plotters. The very idea of writing out a first draft with no idea where I was going is terrifying for me. I always need to know where I'm going. Some curves may surprise me, just like any journey. But the destination is important, too, you know.

I planned the majority of the Magic Inc. series before I even started the first book. Some sections of the journey have bigger empty spots waiting than others (which make me nervous if I think about them too much), but as a whole, I know where the story is going. I know my characters' wants and needs. I know the way their stories weave into my other books. And definitely, where it all ends.

But that's pretty far off, so we can just focus on the journey for now.
fireflys_locket: (Purple Flower Book - colorvary)
2017-02-02 11:42 pm
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Inside & Out Book Tag

Swiping another book-related set of questions from elsewhere to post here. This one is the Inside & Out tag. Feel free to take this onto wherever you like to answer questions.

I Inside flap/Back of the book summaries: Too much info? Or not enough? (Discuss)
I really like book summaries, both reading and writing them. Occasionally, I feel like they give away too much, but usually, I like seeing what all the book wants to tease you with. It's probably the most important factor in deciding what I purchase.

N New book: What form do you want it in? Be honest: Audiobook, E-Book, Paperback, or Hardcover?
I love hardcovers. I box up books and move them often, and they take a beating way better than paperbacks. Plus, I just remember the joy of picking up a new hardcover Harry Potter book. Nothing else compared.

S Scribble while you read? Do you like to write in your books, taking notes, making comments, or do you keep your books clean clean clean? (Tell us why)
Clean, clean, clean. Although I like the idea of making notes in books you want to share with friends.

I In your best voice, read for us your favorite 1st sentence from a book.
Well, since I stole this for my blog, I can't do this one. But I'll link to Alexa reading hers, since it's my favorite as well.

D Does it matter to you whether the author is male of female when you're deciding on a book? What if you're unsure of the author's gender? I'd like to say no, but honestly, I read way more from women authors than male. I find books written by male authors tend to be more gory in fantasy, which is triggering for me, or filled with crude jokes in contemporary, which is also triggering. But I don't consiously avoid male authors.

E Ever read ahead? or have you ever read the last page way before you got there? (Do confess thy sins, foul demon!) :)
I have a friend who always reads the end first. (You know who you are!) I've only skipped ahead when it's something I'm considering abandoning. And I used to check all the chapter art when I got a new HP, until I accidently spoiled myself that way in Book 5. Haha.

&

O Organized bookshelves, or Outrageous bookshelves?
Organized. Sort of. I just group books together in a way that makes sense to me at the time, and I only shelve books I've already read and want to keep.

U Under oath: have you ever bought a book based on the cover (alone)?
Possibly? I do love covers and get drawn in or turned off by them, but I can't remember buying any books without reading the synopsis. The cover is the first pull, but it's not enough to sell the book alone.

T Take it outside to read, or stay in?
Reading outside always sounds relaxing, but I'm too twitchy of a person to actually enjoy it.
fireflys_locket: (Glasses Girl - Collapsingnight)
2017-01-31 06:35 pm

Not-so-"Shitty" First Drafts

I am very nearly halfway through the first draft of Magic Inc. Book Two. Well, really, I'm very nearly halfway done with both the first and second drafts of Book Two. Because writing first drafts by computer instead of in a notebook has allowed me to revise sections as I go along. Which I know can be a killer to some writers. Getting all wrapped up in perfecting one small section instead of actually finishing a full draft of their book. I used to be that way when I was a teenager. Forever starting and restarting Dreaming in Shadow and even my fanfiction projects.

But somewhere between then and now, I got into a better relationship with revision. For one, I became more able to do it on my own instead of relying so much on outside opinions of what needed to be changed. I could see more of the flaws with my own eyes. I could also better appreciate which parts needed to stay raw and filled with emotion. The sections that basically spilled out of my soul. So, now, I am writing in scenes as I feel drawn to them and tying everything together later while also revising what I have already. This leaves me with something more resembling a second draft than a first by the time I end each chapter.

Of course, I will need to go over everything again once I finish writing, and I already have noted some scenes that will probably need more additional editing than others, but I feel I'm delivering more polished new chapters by this method. In some ways, I am hoping that streamlining my process will keep me from taking five years to write one book, but it's mostly just the natural progression my writing process has taken.

I've been reading Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird, and mostly enjoying it so far in spite of my hesitation to read more writing tips for fear of feeling even more alienated. Anne's writing is witty and relatable. At least when she's simply talking about the many feelings writers go through and not trying to teach something. Which is to say, I still cannot relate to the "shitty first draft" concept.

I always prickle when writers proclaim that all first drafts are garbage. While I've certainly created work that was flawed and in need of excessive editing, I have not (at least for many years) written what I would consider garbage. Maybe it's because I usually spend years writing a story in my head before I even start the first draft. Maybe it's because I only write when I'm inspired, and therefore, haven't forced whole chapters out of myself before I was ready. Maybe I'm just really bad at writing, and have been doing it wrong all along. I mean, that's always a possibility, I suppose. But I think my process just different from the norm.

I spent some time recently on Miss Masquerade, which has gotten very little attention from me since the release of Magic Inc. Book One. It surprised me how I'd forgotten the ease of working on a real second draft, where the plot had been laid out and all I had to do was make everything flow better. I got to just play with words. Be a writer over a storyteller, because the story was already told. Being a storyteller has always been my priority, but it is nice to have the freedom to not worry about that part. This is why I put so much into my first drafts. So that all I have to do later is polish. It baffles me that writers often say the second draft is the hard part. But I guess that makes sense if what you threw together the first time was "garbage" and you have to change the structure of everything drastically.

I'm certainly no stranger to having structural issues to fix in second drafts, though. Part of the reason I'd forgotten how nice it could be to write a second draft was because my other second draft, Dreaming in Shadow, had a major issue. There was a scene I had meant to include in the first draft that had the potential to break the flow of the entire second half of the book if I put it in now. Okay, it probably was not going to do that. But I am an anxious person, so I agonized over how I was going to fix this issue most of last year. And in the end, when I finally came to the part in the second draft where the scene needed to go, it went. Perfectly. There was a pointless scene sitting there, holding a place for it this entire time. Ugh. So much wasted time and energy. But I'm grateful it all worked out. Now, I just hope the second draft will start to flow again.

So, maybe I can't quite relate to the "shitty first draft". But the feelings of self-doubt that often facilitate the need for them - oh, can I ever relate to those! Doubt is really is my biggest threat to staying productive, besides low energy. Part of the fight actually is against the worry that I'm somehow doing all of it wrong because my process is so different from most writers. That's why I don't like to read writer's tips. They all seem to be the same. And there are so many different ways to be a creative writer.

What matters most is the finished book. So, if part of your process is to write a bad first draft where you let yourself write freely, go for it! But I actually enjoy my planning and "perfectionism"... most of the time. I have a fairly good relationship with it when it comes to writing, at least. The combination of planning ahead but waiting for the right inspiration to hit before actually getting the words down is a good balance for me. Part of the reason I pay so much attention to my first drafts is that I don't want to edit heavily later. I want the emotions to stay raw, while fixing the flow of everything else.

I would encourage new(ish) writers to let your work be raw and imperfect. Don't let your fears keep you in an editing loop, if it means you'll never finish. Know that you can fix issues later. But don't be afraid to take your time, either. And instead of considering first drafts as being "shitty", think of them as an unpolished gemstone. It is still beautiful. It still deserves your respect. And with more work, it will shine.
fireflys_locket: (Glasses Girl - Collapsingnight)
2016-12-30 04:46 pm
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A Year in the Life of an Author Redux

This was my first full year as an author, and it feels kind of weird. I've gotten a lot of good work done this year, and I'm grateful for that. I know that finishing my next book is my main mission right now, and that's going fairly well (if slowly). I also did an absolutely terrifying first author event, which took so much personal planning and energy.

But I still feel like so little has changed. Aside from a few moments here and there, I still feel more like a writer scrambling to legitimize her vocation by finishing her first book than an author working on her second. And maybe it's just my predisposition for seeing the negative, but I can't help but be sad that I still don't really have any clue what I'm doing when it comes to marketing and disappointed that Magic Inc. hasn't really found its audience yet.
fireflys_locket: (Fangirl Hachi - fireflys_locket)
2016-12-09 12:41 am
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Year-End Book Freak Out Tag

I feel like I should be blogging about books more (and just blogging more in general). I read quite a lot now. The last few years, I've been reading about 30 books per year. This year, there's a chance I might hit 40. That's nothing compared to some of the most voracious readers out there, but it certainly isn't nothing. I've been trying to find some book vlogger/bloggers to follow, and in the process, stumbled upon this tag. Obviously it's way past mid-year, but I wasn't able to find a similar end-of-year tag yet, and I may forget to look for one once the holidays descend. Sooo, let's just pretend this is an end of year book tag, and I'll amend the questions to fit that.

1. Best book you’ve read in 2016?
Where She Went by Gayle Foreman. I really loved the first book, so I had high hopes for this one. It did not disappoint. As soon as I started reading Where She Went, I fell in love. Something about Gayle Foreman's writing style feels like it was tailored specifically for me. I can't explain exactly what about it appeals to me so much, but it's like breathing in a much needed gust of fresh air. I haven't read any of Gayle's other books, and I'm curious to see if the writing style feels the same or if it's just the way she wrote this series.

2. Best sequel you’ve read in 2016?
While Where She Went qualifies here as well, I'll say City of Glass. After years of saying I would never read Cassandra Clare (here's why), I bought her first two books at my library's book sale last year, and after being encouraged by a friend, read them. And loved them. I mean, really loved them. I then had to decide whether to buy the rest of the books, and if so, how. I tracked down used copies with the original covers and read City of Glass in January. What can I say? I love forbidden romance, and the first three Mortal Instruments books are full of it. The characters are amazing, and the lore is fascinating. Book Three added some interesting new characters to the mix and resolved one of the main plot points in the series. And the ending felt very much like it could have been the end to a trilogy. That's why I've hesitated to read the second half of the series. Book Three ends in such a nice place, and I wanted to let the characters rest. I still have my reservations about reading Cassandra Clare and occasionally feel guilty for giving into the hype. But if I judge the books by what they are, I can easily say it's my favorite series of the last two years. And someday, I'll purchase and read The Secret Country series to assuage my guilt.

3. New release you haven’t read yet, but want to?
SO MANY. But maybe, Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum. Or The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon. Or Remembrance by Meg Cabot. I started rereading The Mediator series to prepare.

4. Most anticipated release for next year?
Either Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth or Once and for All by Sarah Dessen.

5. Biggest disappointment?
I mean, I could say Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. But to be honest, I didn't expect great things from it in the first place. And yet, somehow, even going in with low expectations, I was still disappointed. Maybe even emotionally devastated by the destruction of my favorite series. So, actually, Cursed Child. Definitely Cursed Child. (Runner-up: Something, Maybe by Elizabeth Scott. I mean, it had a book blurb from Sarah Dessen; I expected it to be amazing. I found most of the characters unlikable and the circumstances even worse.)

6. Biggest surprise?
Maybe Cinder by Marissa Meyer? I'd heard a lot of praise over the series but wasn't sure tech-based Cinderella would appeal to me. I loved the writing style, the characters, and the world. And all this is just reminding me that I need to read the second book.

7. Favourite new author (debut or new to you)?
Cate Tiernan. I flew through the first three books in the Sweep series. Loved the main characters and the magic. I have the next six books now, and I'm planning to get back to this series soon.

8. Newest fictional crush?
Probably Aiden St. Delphi from The Covenant series by Jennifer L. Armentrout. Honestly, at this point, I can be hard to please when it comes to other writers' fictional love interests now that I've written my own. I'm not impressed with the way male romantic interests are always described as being out-of-this-world gorgeous. Aiden is no exception to this rule, but he has that watchful protector vibe that I love.

9. Newest favourite character?
Probably still Aiden. But also maybe Dawson Black from the Lux series also by Jennifer L. Armentrout.

10. Book that made you cry?
Basically everything makes me cry. So, it's hard to just pick one. But which books may me cry the most? Either The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger or We'll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han. For very different reasons.

11. Book that made you happy?
I guess I don't read a lot of happy books. But I read Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen, and her books are always a treat. (Bonus: Mink Volume 1 by Megumi Tachikawa. So adorable!)
fireflys_locket: (Lovely Reflection - amethystia)
2016-12-06 02:16 pm

Year in Review (Marie Forleo Style)

I was watching Marie Forleo's latest video, and my responses to her questions were getting so long that I decided to turn this into a journal entry. It's been too long, I know. This is only my seventh entry for the whole year. And one was just an excerpt from Magic Inc. But hey, here I am, ready to share more honest, personal thoughts. I suggest you watch the video to understand the questions more in depth, and maybe, make your own list because this felt really cathartic to me. But that's up to you!

1. What’s one thing you did that you’re proud of?
I participated in my first author event/signing. Which was incredibly scary and required a lot of emotional preparation. But I think, considering how hard it is for me to do anything social, I coped well with it. And it was because it was something I really wanted to do, instead of something I felt pressured to do. Plus, I got everything ready ahead of time, which helped calm my anxieties a lot. That could be part of what I learned this year, as well. That giving myself enough time to prepare can really help my anxiety. It won't make it go away, but it does help. I've also put a lot of effort into my second book, and I feel like my writing has improved and I've figured out better ways of working that suit me and my process. It can be hard not to look ahead and see over half a book left to write, but what I have written is some of my best work to date. And it is because I am taking my time with it.

2. What’s one mistake you made and the lesson you learned?
My mistakes are mostly personal, but I think, as always, I struggle too much with worry about what other people will think. I know myself and what I want, and I don't let anyone change that. I don't hide my true self, and I don't fake anything. But I still get triggered way too often by stuff I read on Facebook and the like that I feel is making a judgment on who I am (which sometimes is true, but is often just my perception). I also still judge myself based on other people's accomplishments far more than I ever spend celebrating my own. But I've never been good at celebrating myself, so I'm not sure how to change that.

3. What’s one thing you’re willing to let go of before the New Year?
I have lots of projects I still feel will find their way in the right timing, so I don't want to let go of them completely. I have been doing a lot of physical clearing in my life, though. Going through old clothes, jewelry, magazines, and various papers I no longer need. As well as making a habit of donating books, DVDs, and CDs I don't see myself revisiting. I'm a collector, so I like having a lot of stuff, but it's still important to check with yourself - will I use this again and/or does it have deep meaning to me? You don't have to save absolutely everything. Along with that, I'm trying to keep myself from feeling committed to finish any book series, video game, or TV series that doesn't really capture me. There are so many beautiful stories that will resonate with you, and there just isn't enough time to waste on stories that don't. I tend to try to see the best in creative works, and I have to remind myself that I don't have to like everything. And my not liking something isn't necessarily saying it's objectively bad, just not my cup of tea.

In terms of resentments and guilt, that's a lot harder to let go of. I've quarreled a lot with relatives in the last few years, finally having to block some truly toxic people. Ideally, you would be able to cut off toxic people without holding onto resentment, just forgive and let go (without letting them back in to cause more damage). But that's rarely the case. And for those people who have hurt you without meaning to? The ones you want to forgive and move on with? Maybe that's even harder. And perhaps worst of all, when you're holding onto anger with a person you are currently stuck living/dealing with. Someone you would cut off for good if you could, but life isn't perfect and you have to deal with people you don't like sometimes. And you feel you can't really let go of that anger because you have to continue guarding against them. But at the same time, that anger is killing you, not them. “Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.” Ugh. So true. And yet that doesn't make it easier to let go. At least not for me.

Well, there you have it. I'm not sure I'm completely ready to let go of this year and move into a new one, especially knowing at least one bad thing January has in store. But I do feel like I've opened myself up more and given myself the opportunity to think deeply about all of this. Sometimes even I avoid feeling things if I can manage it. (I usually can't, but if I can... oh, man.) The year ahead scares me. But I encourage you all to follow your heart and intiution. To speak out against injustice. And to be kind. The world desperately needs it right now.
fireflys_locket: (Jane (Book One) - fireflys_locket)
2016-08-30 11:47 am
Entry tags:

A Year in the Life of an Author

Well, it's been a year since Magic Inc. Book One became available for purchase. It has been a very stressful, often traumatic year, so it's hard for me to revisit this milestone with much enthusiasm. However, Magic Inc. represents not only the five years I spent writing it, but the five years of planning before starting it, the many years spent honing my craft before that, and all the passion and pain I felt in my childhood that led to my writing in the first place.

Magic Inc. was my childhood fantasy world. One I never expected to share. One I was scared to invite anyone into. But here it is, one year later. And nothing has exploded. No one has been overly disruptive or unfair in their judgment of the book. But it also hasn't taken off in any big, positive way. Maybe that's what the first year looks like for most indie authors. But it's hard not to get discouraged sometimes. Not to let the success I've yet to find get in the way of writing Book Two. When both your personal life and your "career" are having problems, it is doubly hard to fight off your anxiety and depression.

I do know that, in some ways, I am very lucky. I was able to print my books without putting myself or my parents into any kind of debt. I was able to get a beautiful, personalized cover for my books that some writers could not afford. And my family and old friends have all been supportive of me and my work. Not just now that I have something to show for it, but every step along the way. I mentioned in my last post that I've been reading some of my old fanfiction. I've also been reading some of the reviews I saved from those stories. "I don't doubt you will be an author," my friend, Mallory, says in one comment.

And now, I am. All the work I've put into writing since I was eleven has come together in my first book. First of many, I hope. I certainly have enough ideas to last a lifetime, if not two. Though I still get nervous. What if it just suddenly stops? I don't know how to write from a technical place. I write almost completely based on inspiration and intiution. That actually works for me, in spite of what many other authors will try to advise. I don't really think I could live without writing, but I do worry that I will somehow stop being able to put together whole books. I've already spent a lot of time working on (and worrying about) the outline for Book Three when Book Two isn't even done yet. Ah, I guess that's just life for an anxious writer.

I'd like to take this moment to thank anyone who has read (and particularly reviewed) Magic Inc. Or given me feedback on my writing at any point. It all led up to this. While I became an author only a year ago today, I've been writing for sixteen years. And it was all part of the journey to get to this point. I still have a long way to go, but I will try to step forward with faith that this is the path I am meant to take. When you're a writer, you have to write. It's just who you are.
fireflys_locket: (Purple Flower Book - colorvary)
2015-10-08 05:21 pm

My Book Info

Interested in checking out my books? Here's the place to go!

Read more... )
fireflys_locket: (Jane (Book One) - fireflys_locket)
2015-08-30 09:46 pm
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Magic Inc. Book One Now Available!



Jane Roberts never fit in. After years of teasing from her classmates, all she wanted was to blend in and be normal. But on Jane’s first day of fourth grade, her life changes completely when the new girl, Jenny, brings with her arrival the secret of magic. Jane goes into training, where she learns the ins and outs of magic and its great history. But not even magic can top the feeling Jane gets when she meets Chaz Parker, Jenny’s older brother. She’s head-over-heels and wants to be with Chaz forever, but a nine year age difference makes Jane wonder if he’d ever look at her that way. Between learning magic and falling in love, Jane’s year is bound to be anything but normal.

You can now buy a copy of Magic Inc. in eBook! I will continue to update with new links.

Amazon (for Kindle!)
Barnes & Noble (for Nook!)
iTunes (for Apple Devices!)
Smashwords (Most Formats Available!)

fireflys_locket: (Valerie's Happiness - fireflys_locket)
2015-07-15 01:01 am
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Magic Inc. Book Cover


Just wanted to pop on and share the cover of Magic Inc. drawn by the amazing Giselle Ukardi! Hopefully I'll have some news about a release date soon. Editing is going well, and I'm really excited. Nervous, still, too. But hey, that's how it usually goes. Follow my Facebook and/or Twitter for more news.
fireflys_locket: (Ron/Hermione Book Kiss - aivlis88)
2014-12-08 11:05 am

The Right Reasons

I haven't written an entry in a while. I've been kind of busy. Probably not in comparison to anyone reading this, but enough to tire me out. I'm just about finished with what very limited Christmas shopping I was able to do this year, and I'm seriously ready to go into some kind of introvert hibernation. Just me and my books and games and writing. Oh, and music, because my quest in actually owning the music I listen to was aided greatly by online Black Friday sales. (Also there have been incredible sales for anime and manga here, if that's something that interests you.) But back to what I was saying, I've been wearing myself out, and I need a break. I'm behind on so very many things, partially due to my September/October breakdown, and I just want to stay home and do more of those things and less going out, which often exhausts me for days afterward.

But the one thing that has picked up during this tiring time is reading. I think I've read more books this year than I've ever read in a year before (even if you disregard the couple of manga I threw in there). It decimates the past two years that I've been keeping track of. in fact, I've read more this year than those two years combined. I know 25 books isn't much compared to some people, but I feel pretty proud of myself anyhow. And I've mostly read books I really enjoyed, too. I've rated all but two books as four or five stars. I actually can't believe how lucky I've been to find so many amazing books. And the two books competing for my attention now seem likely to hit four or five stars, too. I've also been really wanting to reread some of my favorite series soon, but I'm hoping GoodReads adds an option to count rereads for challenges and such first.

And I have been making some progress with things like writing. I've now revised 26 of 34 chapters of Magic Inc. - versus 7 of (probably) 37 of Dreaming in Shadow. And it's making me really consider going back on my plans to release Dreaming in Shadow first. But I keep wondering why that is. Is it because I really think Magic Inc. should be my first published novel now, or am I just desperate to release something so that I don't feel like such a fake? So that I don't get so sick with jealousy every time I see a writer announce a new book or "brag" about their NaNo success? There's a part of me that knows I have to go at my own pace, but there's another part that says I should have finished something by now. That I'm not a "real" writer until I do. Which is crazy, because there are plenty of talented writers who never publish. And I probably would have published Dreaming in Shadow by now if I weren't working on four other stories and endless outlines at the same time, but I have absolutely no desire to give my multi-story workstyle up. It keeps me always excited about something, instead of dragging through one thing at a time.

So, maybe I will end up publishing Magic Inc. Book One first. But if I do, it has to be for the right reasons. Otherwise, I'm not really staying true to my vision. And that's one of those things I never want to betray. I have to do things my way, at my pace, and with all my heart and soul. Even if that means I have to wait another year or two to release my first novel.
fireflys_locket: (Release Me - soporifical)
2014-10-03 05:02 pm
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Obsessions That Break You Open

I've been missing again. Turns out, the depressive state from last entry turned into an extreme anxiety crash after a relative's long visit. I don't feel much like going into the exact triggers because talking about that stuff is what worked me up in the first place. I tried to hold it in. I tried to just move past it. It would have been nice to have a calender year without an anxiety crash or tragedy. But I couldn't do it. It had to come out. And maybe if I hadn't tried so hard to hold it in, it wouldn't have been as bad. But I'm always scared now that if let my emotions free I'll crash like this everytime. And I couldn't handle that.

As it often happens, my held-in emotions found a temporary outlet in an obsession. This time it was book. A beautiful, lovely, tragic book. It was one that stood out to me instantly when I first ran across it online. It called out to me, begging for me to buy it. So, I did. Then it settled into a spot in the stacks with my other books to be read. And stayed quiet for a couple of years. I knew I'd love it. I also knew it would hurt me. As with many things, I waited for the exact right moment. Or the exact wrong moment. But no, I can't regret any of this.

I noticed a friend was reading the book on Goodreads; that was the reminder. Then she rated it five stars. I liked the update, and added it to my To-Read list. Then we started talking about it. I finished the book I was currently reading (Harry, A History - finally!) and started Forbidden. Our company was still around at the time. I hid in my room and read. And obsessed. Every word hit against my heart, shaking the held-in emotions. It was painful and blissful at the same time. It hurt so good.

Then the company left, and I hesitated to read the last hundred or so pages. I'd known from the start that this book would be one of those beautifully sad ones. The ones I call Lovely Despair. But after the company was gone, I could feel my guard slipping down. My exhaustion was leaking through. All of the depression I'd felt through August had been amplified by incidents during the company's visit, but I had to stay stable. I had to survive. Once they were gone, I was crumbling. I finally read through to the end. And I was broken open with grief.

I sobbed. And sobbed. And all the things that had built up inside me came rushing out. I couldn't control it. I listened to a fanmix, my obsession still strong. Looked up stuff on Tumblr. Tried to make it only about the book. But it wasn't. The obsession had protected me for a while, but as it always goes, that obsession broke me open in the end. And I couldn't avoid the pain and the panic anymore.

My Mom stayed home from work. I had flashbacks of my breakdown in 2010. I felt like those times had never actually ended. That they had stretched all through these years, and I had just been living in an illusion. Panic attacks are almost the worst thing in the world because they convince you they are the worst thing in the world. That the world is ending. That you can't breathe. That you're bleeding to death. Even when you aren't.

The panic came in waves. When I started to go under, my thoughts automatically started back on the book and that grief. I guess that pain at least seemed safer than my real fears, though I always ended up back in my own pain. As part of my recovery, Jill suggested writing a piece of fanfiction for the book. I did. It helped some. I also wrote a book review. I even started a fanmix of my own.

I'm starting to feel somewhat better now, but I'm still really shaky. I'm scared something will happen, and I'll crash back down again. Panic Disorder is such that you find yourself panicking at the thought of panicking. And I have a psychiatrist appointment coming up to worry over. He sometimes makes me feel worse. Often, really.

It took weeks to recover. But here I am, trying to get back to normal. But it's hard. I find myself still obsessing over my beloved Forbidden, which has earned a place in my heart forever. But I have to be careful how long I let myself stay there. Because it's still painful. Because I'm still struggling.

An obsession can help you or it can hurt you. Or it can hurt you to help you. That's what I think this one did. This book would have made me love it and feel pain from it whenever I decided to read it. But I read it now. Why? Because I needed to be broken open. Maybe. It's hard to say that when you're still struggling, still recovering. But I think that's why. It was also helpful to have someone to talk to who had read it and loved it quite recently. Funny how I started out thinking I was reading it now to support her. It ended up being the other way around.
fireflys_locket: (Valerie's Happiness - fireflys_locket)
2014-01-03 08:53 pm

What's Behind Us and What Lies Ahead

It's a new year, and I'm actually pretty excited about that. It's freeing to put away the complications of a long year and start fresh again. I felt pretty good at the beginning of last year, too. But this year might feel even better. Maybe there was just more I wanted to let go of. Truthfully, you can start fresh at any time, but this is a really powerful time to try.

I wrote out a post about what I wanted for 2013, and I decided to look back at it now and think about how the year went.

I've said this before, but I think 2013 was by far my best year when it comes to writing. I finished two first drafts in the first three months of the year. It was an emotional, bittersweet experience. For a while it was mostly painful, but I can look back with pride. (I put everything I have into writing first drafts, so it's definitely worth something at the end.) I spent most of the rest of the year working on the second drafts, resulting in about 15 nearly ideal chapters of fiction. In October, I took a little break from revision to start a new story. I also finished the first draft of my half of Spun of Silver, and got started on its second draft. And got very, very close to finishing the first draft of Miss Masquerade.

And almost all of that work was done without putting pressure on myself to constantly be getting stuff done. I didn't make sure I had something to show Jill every week. I chose to follow what I felt most called to work on at that moment... whether that was writing, revising, outlining, building houses, making Sims, sorting music (which sometimes leads to amazing new ideas), or even just relaxing and taking in inspiration. And it led to my most productive year ever.

I also did a lot of organizing in 2013. I didn't completely finish clearing a space for a new bookshelf and DVD cabinet, but I put a slow, consistent effort into sorting through stuff. I get really anxious when it comes to empty spaces in my room and letting go of possessions, so there was really no way to get this done more quickly. And I'm proud of myself for just getting this far. It may not seem like a big deal from the outside, but inside, it's a huge deal, trust me.

There were some things I didn't do so well with, though...

Health-wise, 2013 was a total flop. Well, I didn't get super sick or anything like that, which I'm quite thankful for. But I probably put the least amount of effort into eating healthy and exercising since I first started thinking about that stuff. If I'm honest about it, it's been a continual downward slide since my Grandma died in 2011. I don't know exactly why, but it's something I've noticed. And I don't really feel comfortable talking about weight and exercising, which maybe isn't helping. I do know that - like it or not - I am a very low energy person, and I have to be careful with where I put that energy. Last year, I chose writing. A lot. And I'm not exactly sorry about that. But I would like to put a bit more energy into health matters this year. If I could even just shift out of this downward slide a tiny bit, that would be great.

Another thing that suffered was reading. I only read 11 books in 2013. That's not even one per month. I've always been a slow reader, but this is pretty bad. Still, I actually know exactly what went wrong here. I spent most of the year reading books I felt like I needed to read over what I really wanted to read at the moment. I had books to review, books from writer friends, and books from writer acquaintances. That's not to say I didn't enjoy those books. I definitely did! (Well, except that book I reviewed. That, I could have skipped.) But I constantly had another book next on the list, instead of just following the flow of what was really calling me. Having everything scheduled is very draining to me. I like to have important necessities planned out, but when it comes to the rest of my time, I like randomness paired with intuition. There was a point where I wasn't even enjoying reading anymore, because I had turned reading into work. That's when I finally followed my intuition and took a break from my list to read some books I was really excited to read. I think I would have enjoyed the other books I read last year more if I had spaced them out better from the beginning. Lesson learned, I hope.

So, what do I want to do this year?

Well, I'd love to have another great year with writing. I learned a lot about revising and editing last year. Writing second drafts has really built my confidence as a writer. I'm finally pretty consistently proud of the work I'm doing. A lot of the time, revising has flowed exceptionally well, probably because I spent so very much time building a good base. But certain parts also had their difficulties. More than I expected. In that way, it's been both easier and harder than I expected it would be. That's why I'm hesitant to set any large goals this year. I think there's a good chance I could finish Magic Inc.'s second draft this year. But I'd also like to spend more of my time on Dreaming in Shadow. Then, there's Miss Masquerade. I don't think there's any chance I won't finish the first draft. And I'm excited to get started on the second draft. As for Spun of Silver and The Town of Raindrops, they are more side projects right now. But who knows? I just want to follow the flow of my inspiration wherever it takes me.

I want to get myself on a pretty regular sleeping schedule that lets me have the optimum amount of rest and time to get things done. For me, that's getting up at 8:30AM, getting my early morning stuff done by 10:30AM, leaving the rest of the day open, until 9:00PM when I relax in the living room with my Mom, then get to bed by 11:30PM. Yeah, I like to sleep 9 hours. It's what I usually need.

And once I get myself comfortably back on that schedule, I'll start trying to fit in more exercise with that extra time.

I'm definitely planning to get another bookshelf and cabinet in my room this year. I'm going to get the rest of the stuff off of my floor and binned. Hopefully, soon. (But like I said, I can't push it.) And we'll see what happens after that.

I'll try to read at least 12 books this year. Haha.

I'm still looking for more balance when it comes to friendships. I met a few new people. I occasionally connected with old friends. I think there were some improvements over 2012. But there were also times, I felt like giving up on socializing altogether. Ultimately, I'm still looking for my tribe.

As a big part of that, I'll (of course) keep calling in my soulmate. Because finding him will always be my most important goal. Until I do. Then, it will be creating a beautiful life together where we can support each other's dreams.

I want to wish you many blessings in the year to come. I hope you meet your goals and thoroughly enjoy the journey there, too.
fireflys_locket: (Fangirl Hachi - fireflys_locket)
2013-10-25 05:08 pm

A Post...

In which I talk briefly about dealing with anxiety (and why it's never been a better time to be a nerd) and not so briefly about things that I love.

Hey, look: I'm posting again! And it hasn't been forever. I'm pretty proud of that. I really don't know why it's been so hard to come up with things to talk about this year. I mean, I have theories, but... well, that doesn't really matter. I'm here now. I was talking about social networks with Jill last night, and I was lamenting how LiveJournal really fell out of relevance for most people. But I love this place. Maybe all that's left now is nostalgia, but I don't care. This is where I post my thoughts, still. When I have something more than a tweet's worth of a thought.
I've reluctantly accepted Twitter as a worthwhile way to get small thoughts out. I didn't want to like it, but I do now.

So, this week hasn't been much to talk about. I went to the mall to get a book last Saturday, and there was some kind of mall event going on. I was only there about 15 minutes, but I've been exhausted since then. I seriously almost turned around and left right away when I saw all the people. I was emotionally exhausted all this week. I didn't get any writing done, save for just a paragraph or two last night. That how much that kind of thing affects me. But I know I'm not the only person who goes through that. People with high anxiety have good company, I think. That makes it suck just a teeny, tiny bit less. Occasionally.

I read a good post yesterday about what we think of as flaws not always being inherently bad. Everybody just works differently. If you embrace the things that are part of you and work with them, stuff usually turn out better than if you were fighting your own nature. I find that to be pretty true for me. Some weeks just don't work out writing-wise. Stressing about it just gets me in an even worse space for writing the next week. Knowing that helps, but it can still be hard accepting a "bad" week when everything was going so well. But I try. And when I"m dealing with anxiety or the exhaustion from it, I try my best to enjoy things I can do while recovering. (More on this later...)

There's a craft show this weekend I want to go to, which is always busy. So, I might be emotionally weary all next week, too. It happens. Things will come back together, though. Although I was not happy to see snow yesterday, I am kind of ready to not go out as much (which isn't a lot, as it is, but still). To snuggle up with my writing and reading and video games and Netflix all Winter. It's a really good time to be an introvert, guys. Or a nerd, or whatever you want to call it. There's just so much stuff you can enjoy at home by yourself. Or with people you're close with, if you're lucky enough to have some. Love stuff, by the way. It's fun to love stuff.

So, what kind of stuff am I loving right now? Well, the short answer is LOTS OF STUFF!!! I'm going to give you the long answer...

While I haven't been writing this week, I have been reading. After feeling so overwhelmed most of this year with "needing" to read writing from friends and acquaintances, I switched to reading some books I've been dying to read. I finished Mockingjay a couple of weeks ago. Wednesday, I finally started The Fault in Our Stars. Yes, the third John Green book I've bought, and I'm finally reading one! (I have sooo many books to read, gah.) Why did I wait so long to read this book? I'm already totally in love with it. And I pretty much knew I would be, from all the stuff I've heard about it on Tumblr or VlogBrothers. I even ordered a signed poster, because it was just so pretty. (The story behind the poster is cool, too.) Sometimes, you just know when you're really going enjoy something. And if you're like me... sometimes, you save that thing for when you really need it. Like I did on Wednesday. So, I'm glad I waited, in the end.

While I'm on the topic of VlogBrothers, I've been watching my way through HankGames videos (with and without Hank). I particularly enjoy watching Hank and Katherine play Super Mario Brothers Wii. They are my go-to videos right now. Along with - as always - catching up on Giant Bomb videos. These two sets of videos, more than anything, have been making my weeks more enjoyable lately.

I've been watching other stuff, too. I recently watched through Samurai Champloo on Netflix. I haven't started another show or season yet, but I've thinking either the second season of Dollhouse or the third season of Being Human will be next. Meanwhile, I've been rewatching The Vision of Escaflowne on DVD. (Did I ever tell you how much I love boys with wings? Like, seriously. Sparkly vampires are great and all, but give me ghosts or angels over them any day.) And I'm watching Degrassi and The Legend of Korra on TV. Neither is particularly thrilling me this season, but the way fans have abandoned both shows kind of scares me.

I've also been playing games. I got back into Skyrim this week. Finally started the Dawnguard stuff. And I've been playing lots of The Sims 2. Both games are go-tos for de-stressing. And they work just as well as ever, thank goodness. I've been all over the place with gaming for the last month. I can't even begin to list every game I've played a bit of. But yeah, gaming is fantastic, and I love it.

I don't necessarily love times when I'm not writing as much, but that's how I get to fit some of this other stuff in. I've gotten back to organizing and (with Joe's help) hung some posters. I even made an new icon post for the first time in about two years. So, yeah. I've been enjoying my time just fine by trying to focus on good things instead of the not-so-good. It can be hard, I know. Trust me, I know. But I'm mentioning these things, because I'm really grateful that they exist and I get to enjoy them.

And I want to thank Ben and his video for inspiring me to make this very long post, that no one will read. Hehe. I like looking back at my posts every once in a while, so this is for future me, mostly. This is what I've been up to and thinking. I love you, Gina (future me). I hope you're doing well, too. (And you have Morgan, if we're lucky!)
fireflys_locket: (Fangirl Hachi - fireflys_locket)
2013-01-13 07:29 pm

Fandom Survey 2012

It's been too long since I talked about fandoms on here. I took this survey from this Tumblr post. I'm not sure I have any amazing answers, but I'm going to try my best.

1. What fandom(s) did you fall into this year? Lots, but I'll list some favorites: One Tree Hill, The Hunger Games, Instant Star, Dollhouse, and Dance Academy. I'm looking forward to enjoying more of all of these this year.

2. What new internet slang did you learn? Uh... no idea.

3. What was the best movie you saw? I watched so many great movies in 2012, but I'm not sure which I'd call the best. But if you want a long list of some movies I really loved watching last year: The Last Song, Water Lilies, Foxfire, Keith, The Secret World of Arrietty, Wreck-It Ralph, The Hunger Games, Across the Universe, Sucker Punch, Black Swan, Cruel Intentions, Snow White and the Huntsmen, Beastly, and Red Riding Hood.

4. Favorite character you met this year? Peeta Mellark. <3

5. Favorite meme? I'm not sure about that.

6. What is the most nerdy item you acquired? Maybe the Signed copy of Paper Towns (which I still haven't read yet...)?

7. Favorite new food you tried this year? I don't try a lot of new foods, but this. Thank you, Sam.

8. What was the best book you read? This is so close between Catching Fire and Forbidden, but I'm going to choose Forbidden, because I adored it, and I'm hoping a great new series will follow this great book.

9. Favorite YouTube channel you subscribed to? Michelle Phan. What can I say? Her videos are so relaxing, and I love the music she uses.

10. What is your favorite memory of 2012? Meeting my (almost) step-niece, Brooklyn.

11. What are you looking forward to in 2013? Finishing at least two first drafts, and working on the second drafts of those stories. I am seriously really excited!

12. What is the GIF best expresses 2012 for you? The year in general. Most of my year. The rest of my year.
fireflys_locket: (Valerie's Happiness - fireflys_locket)
2013-01-08 03:16 pm

Learning to Respect Rest and What If You Had No Fear

Finally, LiveJournal is working again. I've had things I wanted to say and no where to say them. Okay, I have plenty of places to say them, but none feel as right to me as this journal. I recently saw someone on Tumblr say, "Seriously, who uses LiveJournal?" Well, I do. And I know I'm not the only one. When I do visit my Friends List, I'm always surprised that it's not as quiet as I usually imagine it is. Some people move through sites chasing the passing fad. I've added a lot of sites into my life: Facebook, Tumblr, and (recently) Twitter. They all have their place, but I'll never move away from LiveJournal, unless by force. The recent down time has made me think about looking into backing up my journal, though. And that worries me.

But what's been going on with me? Oh, the usual... writing, fandoms, holiday depression. Actually, that last one wasn't too bad in comparison to other years, so I'm thankful. It's sad when you have to be grateful when things aren't as bad as they could be, but it's better than not being grateful for anything. I wish I hadn't been pressured into going out to dinner on New Year's Eve, but other than that - or even including that - I survived fine. And I was just really ready for a new year.

January, for me, is a thoughtful month. I usually don't get as much writing done in the winter, and particularly, January. I actually wrote more than I thought I would during the holidays, but now, I can feel myself wanting to slow down and rest. Under normal circumstances, I'd be really frustrated by not having written this far into the week (I usually count writing weeks from Friday to Thursday, because Thursdays are when Jill reads my weekly writing at therapy). But I've been getting a lot of signs that resting is a good thing for me right now; the greatest of which was this article, which I read a few days ago. Though it describes Expansion as a time of new ideas, I find that, during the winter, I actually get a lot of new ideas. The Contraction times for me are times of planning, where I'm not doing much work on actually writing, but a lot of new ideas surface, and little things click into place. Even more than usual, I'm focused on stories in the future. Sometimes, I'll even write out some scenes for those stories, but I'm just not as focused on writing my current stories.

This week has been a Contraction week, for sure. I've been relaxing... and without the guilt. As I mentioned in my comment, even when I let myself give into the need to rest, I often guilt myself about it, which almost completely taints what I gain from it. It's not really rest, if you're stressing about it. Interestingly, I recently heard a quote from a Neopets friend about rest, "No rest is worth anything but the rest that is earned." While I do agree that one needs to make sure they put in the effort during times of Expansion, I didn't want him putting rest down completely. If all you did in life was work, you'd end up drained. You might even be forced to rest... and for longer than you would have needed if you had taken regular breaks. Point is, rest is a natural part of life. We need times of Contraction, just like we need times of Expansion. But everyone's balance of those cycles is different, and we just need to listen to our intuition when it's telling us which it currently is.

So, right now, I'm resting. I probably will try to write tomorrow, but I'm not going to force it. Writers mostly have been agreeing with me that "forcing it" is not a good idea, whether that means to skipping to a part of the story, which suits your mood better, moving to a different story for a while, or in this case, just taking a short break. I believe there are few times when forcing something is the right thing to do. There are times, certainly, but few.

Last January (and some of the previous December), I was reading through Add More ~ing to Your Life, and - though, I struggled with the book at times - it was mostly a good way to get really thoughtful about some new ways of seeing things for a new year. The book certainly inspired a lot of journal posts. I remember doing a lot of crying and meditating, while listening to music, which was really touching my soul at the time. I must have been somewhat ready to do that again, because something about the new year approaching made me want to start a book from my Aunt, that I've had sitting around for years, What Would You Do If You had No Fear?. In all honestly, I just wanted to read the book, so I could release it from its place of taunting me. I've let it sit around for so long, because I just knew it was going to be difficult and make me think bad things about myself, because I'm not at all willing to release my fears of people.

I was kind of wrong. Wrong about the book, I mean. Okay, I really haven't gotten far along it at all, so I don't know for certain that I'm completely wrong about it. But from the Introduction and Chapter 1, I can see that this book isn't quite for me for a whole other reason: I'm already doing what I would do if I had no fear. Well, not entirely. Certainly, there are things I'd kind of like to do, which fear keeps me from. Going to Harry Potter and anime conventions, for one. But even those things just aren't very important to me, because if they were, I'd work on them. That's the thing with me; I don't put energy into most of the things that I fear, because it would drain me too much for the things that are really important to me. Like writing. Like, hopefully, doing small local events for writing. That's exactly what I want to do with my life, and I'm already doing it.

My Aunt Pat (the same one, who got me that book years ago) called recently. I don't hear from her often, so she was happy to hear me update her on how well writing has been going over the last couple of years and all my plans for the future. Then, she asked me what else have I been doing. She asked if I've been getting out, and when I told her that I haven't much, she suggested taking writing or knitting classes. I told her I would never be able to take classes, because I never go out on my own. She said she hoped I'd get over it. Those are trigger words for me, and though I was trying to be nice about it, I knew I had to shut this idea down. I told her that I had no desire to take classes, so I wasn't going to put effort into something that would never work, when I didn't want it anyhow.

The book talks about doing those things you've always wanted to do. But I don't want to travel and see the world. I don't want to take classes for things I don't care about (this includes writing classes, because I know what and how I like to write already). I don't want to go out all the time. I don't want to be normal. (Yes, it would be nice to not feel like I was in near-mortal danger every time I went out in public, but hey, I've been going out shopping with my Mom most Saturdays for years, and it has never gotten any better.) I have no desire for those things. What I want is to write. What I want is to self-publish. What I want is to enjoy inspiration from movies, games, books, and music from the comfort of my own home. And I don't want those things, because I'm afraid of "what I really want". I want those things, because I'm an Introvert... not because I have Social Anxiety. (Those are two different things, by the way.) I want these things, because I'm me. The only thing I really want, that fear might be keeping me, from is Morgan. But even that's not for certain, because Morgan's not likely to be someone who's out all the time. I want another Introvert, like me. And I am very open to online contact.

I always go into these sorts of Non-Fiction books with a bad mentality of knowing that a frustrating challenge waits for me, the easily triggered. But I will say that I do usually learn something about myself, even if it's not exactly the lesson the book intended. And it usually gets me to journal about it. So, watch out. *Looks at this long post* Maybe, it's too late for that warning. :/

January has been pretty kind to me, so far. I feel lighter, like the baggage of last year (or maybe the last few years) has mostly been left behind. This won't last. But I'm trying to be kinder to myself, to let the little mistakes and mishaps go more easily, and to allow myself to rest. Rest, because there's a lot I want to do this year, and I need the energy to do it.

I wish you all the start of great new year. If things aren't going well so far, remember to take a deep breath and know that you don't always have to wait for a new year to get things back on track. And I'm always here if you need to talk.
fireflys_locket: (Valerie - amillionicons)
2012-06-21 10:45 am

Questions from Medleymisty!

One of my friends - who has written a great Sims story, by the way - [livejournal.com profile] medleymisty, wrote out these questions. I haven't answered questions like this in some time. I love these things. But I won't promise my answers will be that interesting. I guess we'll see!

1. What's your favorite book, and why?

I'll admit that I'm not terribly well-read. Especially for a writer. I've read shamefully few classics in my couple of high school years. I always say that the only college class I would probably benefit from is one dedicated to studying classic literature, because I can't seem to make myself read them on my own.

I like Young Adult books. They may not be as technically well-written as Adult Fiction (though that's up for debate), but they often have, in my opinion, a lot more heart. When I read, I want to feel exactly what the character is feeling, more than I want to see what they are seeing. But if you're able to balance them both, that makes for a great book, indeed.

I change my very favorite book here and there, but my favorite book series is always Harry Potter. Jo Rowling is able to do just what I said: help us both feel and see. She has a vast world of characters and history. As someone creating a world just as big, I admire that. Plenty of Fantasy Fiction does great with world-building, but not all of them have as much heart as the Harry Potter books. That's what makes them special.

2. What's your favorite song, and why?

My favorite song changes even more than my favorite book. But there are a few songs I call on when I need to heal or cry. Might seem like a contradiction, but crying can be healing, sometimes. Anyhow, probably my favorite song would be Anna Nalick's In My Head, because she talks about pretending her soulmate is there with her, and that's what gets her through. And that's pretty much the core of my life. If I didn't let myself pretend to be with him, I wouldn't be able to make it through. Sounds kind of crazy, probably.

A close second would be Owl City's Vanilla Twilight. It's almost the male version of In My Head. Or at least, that's how I see it.

3. If you could eat anything ever, what would you eat?

Oreo cream pie. Honestly, anything with oreos is my weakness.

4. How did you come by your current beliefs?

I think I finally figured out most of what I truly believed in by writing it. Like when I made it that every character in my world had a soulmate, I realized that I believed that was true of our world, too. But I think I always knew what was true for me, even when I was little. Just years of growing up in Catholic School, trying to be the perfect Catholic, might have made me proclaim things I didn't really believe in. Just to note, I do believe in a God, but he isn't as unaccepting as the one I "grew up with".

5. If you had a spaceship, what would you name it?

Firefly! That both is and isn't a reference to the TV show. Basically, I would have named it that even if I hadn't seen the show, which I only watched for the first time a couple of years ago. But now, I do see it as a Firefly ship.

6. If you could turn into a small round thing and go up someone's nose and into their brain and see what it was like to be them, whose nose would you go up?

Oh, I would get way too queasy just thinking about seeing the inside of somebody's body. But if I had to choose someone, I guess I would go into Morgan. At least that would mean I knew where he was!

7. What is your personal definition of humility?

This is a really good question. As[livejournal.com profile] medleymisty mentions in her post, it can be used to mean self-deprecating. And as someone, who struggles with self-esteem in a pretty extreme way, I can't say that sounds like a good thing. I think what it should mean is knowing your place in the world. Knowing that you're here for a reason, but also that you're connected to the whole world. Respecting that, in general, you're not more important than any other person. That everyone has a place in this world.

8. Pick up the book nearest you. Turn to page 87. What's the first full sentence?

Oh, how unfortunate...This page 87 just has a section title: Rogerson. It's from Sarah Dessen's Dreamland, which I haven't read yet, but I adore a couple of her other books, and this one came quite recommended. This will probably be what I start after I finish Mag Cabot's Insatiable, which is what I'm reading right now. But I have so many good sounding books here to read. <3

9. Do you have heroes? If so, who are they and why are they your hero(es)?

My personal hero is probably my Grandma. She had so much love in her. There were things we disagreed on, but mostly, I admired her strength of love and faith.

When it comes to writing and creating stories, Jo Rowling and Ai Yazawa are my heros. They've inspired me so much. I couldn't thank them enough.

10. Are you attached to your username as part of your identity, or do you have different usernames all over the internet?

Oh, this username means so much to me. If you don't know the history, I once typed it up here. I was getting a little irritated that people kept assuming I used the word firefly because of the Owl City song, when I actually came up with it a good 7-8 years beforehand. Not that I don't adore that song. I mean, if any celebrity were Morgan, it would be Adam Young. <3 And now, I should stop talking, because I'm embarrassing myself. :/

11. What do you think makes for a good healthy friendship?

Sometimes, I'm not sure if any of my friendships are that healthy. Usually, either my friends barely have any time for me, or I end up sucking the life out of them, because I'm so needy and depressing. On the other hand, I would do anything I could for my friends, but at times, I end up feeling like all I ever do is give. It doesn't make me want to give any less, but it does make me feel lonely.

I guess a healthy friendship would be where two people, with love and respect, supported each other, while not compromising their own well-being. But like I said, I'm not sure I know how to do that. I both give and need with such passion, that I think I would need someone, who could match that intensity. That's kind of where Morgan comes in. I need someone, who could be my best friend as well as my lover. Someone, who could handle all my passion. Haha.
fireflys_locket: (Proud Hufflepuff - cesaretech)
2012-05-08 01:01 pm
Entry tags:

I'm a Hufflepuff!



So, I guess I had nothing to be worried about! ^_^
fireflys_locket: (Fangirl Hachi - fireflys_locket)
2012-04-23 12:27 pm

Busy Mind and Inspirations

I haven't been writing much. However, I have been very focused on planning. Readying myself to finish Dreaming in Shadow and Miss Masquerade. Thinking about how I'll procede with the next versions. Trying to figure out which stories I'll start next. And lots of details in stories I'm planning out. Sometimes, it's hard to feel satisified with a week of just planning... but I also know, I've been really busy up in my head, not just with writing but with other things as well. And I've certainly been busy taking in inspiration!

Yesterday, I completed Titanic: Adventure Out of Time for the 5th or 6th time. What makes this time special is that I did it for the 100th anniversary. And I managed to do what I always wanted to do - save Georgia, while still getting off the boat with all the important objects. Every guide I can remember warned against trying to save Georgia, and you get no acknowledgement at the end of the game for doing so. But like with all the effort I spend in trying to keep followers alive in The Elder Scolls games, I feel good about it. In my world, Georgia and Carlson live happily ever after in this great world of peace.

Another thing I revisited last week was Firefly. It's only my second time watching it, and no, I didn't watch it while it was actually on, sorry. But man, I love that show. Spaceships really aren't my thing, but the characters in this show are awesome. And that's what makes me love a story. I felt even more sad this time that the show ended so short. But it made me think that I really need to get into some fanfiction. I don't read much of it these days, but this show seems perfect for it. It had so much potential. I'm not really sure where to start looking, though.

I've also begun a struggle the last couple of weeks of reading A Game of Thrones. I think I've had this book for about 5 years, on recommendation from Jill. But I've been ignoring it, because I had a feeling it would frustrate me. Maybe it sounds pathetic coming from a writer, but I really don't care for Adult Fantasy. (Or most Adult Fiction, in general.) I feel like it's often too focused on world-building details, instead of how the characters are feeling. Of course, that isn't limited to Adult Fantasy, as I've seen Spindle's End in the YA section, but I think it is more common. And like that book, I really do enjoy the characters in A Game of Thrones, but they often get lost in technical details. Also, the book has twice made me sick with gory descriptions. At least with a movie, I can look away if I see it coming, then it's gone. Books don't quite work that way.

Funnily, the author - like Robin McKinley - is apparently against fanfiction. I guess that's their right, but I don't really respect creators limiting fan expression, when it can actually do a lot to help their creations to be shared with others. As long as someone isn't making money off of your work without permission or claiming it as their own, I don't see what the problem is. I'm just glad my favorite author didn't limit my creativity while I was exploring writing for the first time with her world.

And speaking of that, I joined Pottermore. It's... okay. The interface isn't particularly great. However, the new information is worth the bit of hassle! Oh, Jo Rowling. <3 She just knew we needed more now that the movies are finished. And she has so much information to give! Nothing wrong with her world-building, since you can also feel close to Harry and his emotions. That's the perfect combination, if you ask me.

So far, I've enjoyed the questions, but not the result. Dragon heartstring wand. :/ I would never use that. Next, they'll put me in Slytherin. Though I'd actually mind that less. But it just reminds me of how I'd not be able to deal with Hogwarts if it were real. Turning beetles into buttons and cutting up animal bits for Potions. Sorry, I'll pass. I'll just stay at home and write about magic.

And that's just a portion of all the fandoms I've been into the past couple of weeks! For a more updated idea of what I'm into at any time you could follow me on Tumblr. I check in almost every night.