The Best Parts of Ourselves


I was just going to sit down to write a general update post, when I saw there was a Beautiful People link-up that was mostly applicable to me this month, so here I am - that's my excuse.  Ready? Let me get my tea...

1. What were your writing achievements last year?
I finished the first draft of Talldogs!  I don't even remember now how long it took me.  Time is irrelevant to me and I've never been good at keeping track of it.  I finished it, and that's what counts.  I was also able to write little stories for a friend to get her through the grueling last days of a college semester, and the fact that I brought her some joy and something to look forward to at the end of the day also made me happy.

2.  Tell us about your top priority writing project for this year.
Currently in the works is my Plenilunar novel Drakeshelm.  I'm really excited about this one, it's really going well and I'm loving the characters.  I have to say, the setting is not what I'm used to, so I feel out of my depth.  But if I were to only write what I'm used to, I would be a lame excuse for a writer, right?  Actually, I'm not sure I even know how to do that...

3.  List [an area] you'd like to work at the hardest to improve this year.
I'd like to not be so much of a perfectionist that I can't practice.  "Almost isn't good enough."  But I have to practice to get to good enough.

4.  What's your critique partner/beta reader situation like and do you have plans to expand this year?
Really it's just Mirriam and my husband.  Most people are simply super busy, also I don't write at a consistent pace to give them eyeball fodder.  With the exception of my husband, most people don't see the first draft of my novels.  I like to get the mess on paper first, go back and fix the major structural problems, do a preliminary grammatical edit, and then show the draft to people.  In short, I like to make sure it's washed, clothed, and has some makeup on before it goes out in public.

5.   Pick one character you want to get to know better.  How are you going to achieve this?
I'm going to go with Philip Cheval of Ampersand.  He is so much that I am not and I love him.  I can't wait to tackle his story and get down to business.  (There are no Huns involved.)

I'm not going to bore you with the questions I left out because they didn't apply to me and that, as an answer, would have been lame.  Okay, update time.

What are you reading?  I'm currently reading The Witches: Salem, 1692.  Not a quick read, but I am at least halfway through now.  Yay me!  I'm actually super intimidated by large books and I rarely pick them up.  I'm a slow reader and I get discouraged when it takes me a long time to accomplish a book.  It's lame, but that's my confession.

What are you watching?  My husband and I are watching the Korean drama "My Love From Another Star" (murder! intrigue! humour! glamour!) and "The Worst Cooks in America" (very embarrassing and entertaining at the same time).

What are you listening to?  My favourite songs right now are "Stand By You" by Rachel Platten, and "Make Them Gold" by CHVRCHES.

What are you writing?  This is not always obvious, given the way I can flop from story to story.  I'm working on Drakeshelm, I swear!  I'm over 42,000 words on the main document.

when you can't rise, well, i'll crawl with you on hands and knees
'cause i'm gonna stand by you

I have to confess, December was a tough month for me and I don't feel like I'm out of the woods yet.  I've had some difficult, circumstantial depression to slog through.  Writing has fallen by the wayside because of that - not because I wanted it to, but because it's hard to breathe when depressed, let alone buckle down and dredge up creativity.  On occasion I have made myself do it, just to have accomplished something.  Sometimes I felt nothing afterward except disappointment at what I had created ("Almost isn't good enough"), but other times I really loved what I had made and I was genuinely happy.

we will take the best parts of ourselves and make them gold

To those of you who are enthusiastic about my work and let me know that you have read my blog for a long time, who always look forward to my updates and my snippets, thank you.  You give me something to look forward to.  You give me a reason to do this.  When you can't walk, you crawl - and when you can't do that, you find someone to carry you.

here's to you

4 ripostes:

  1. The Worst Cooks in America! YAS. I feel like the commentary between you and Timothy must be hilarity itself.

    More than some joy, Jenny: heart-breaking and building and the strength to carry on. Or so I'm told.

    Here's to the magic of words! May they carry you through 2016 brightly and boldly. Here's to you. <3

    (What an eclectic comment! I make no apologies. Katie out. *drops mic but only because i have butterfingers*)

  2. You are just pretty much totally the best ever. <3 XD

  3. Sorry to hear that December was a struggle. I feel like this whole year had ups and downs for me and writing always seemed to be on the back burner. e_e I hope this year proves more successful with your writing. But hey, conrgrats on finishing your draft of Talldogs, that means you did do SOME writing last year! XD What on earth is My Love From Another Star?! =D I'm gonna go check that out. Great read! Good luck with your writing.

  4. I'm so excited for the things you accomplished last year!!!

    A little thrill went through me when I saw your blog on my news feed (yay! Another Penslayer post!).

    I'm sorry you've had to slog through stuff lately. I think we've all been there. Here's to emerging on the other side.

    My two favorite things about your writing: 1. You have a way of taking a feeling from deep down inside of me and putting it into words in a way that's so perfect it almost hurts and 2. Your writing smacks so strongly of excellence that it calls out excellence in my own writing -- not that I write like you but that I don't settle for mediocrity in my own style. And I love you for it.

    Thank you!