I’m on Top of the World!

Things are starting to look up for me these days, so I thought I would share my upswing!

First, I recently decided that enough was enough and I am going to take this weight loss thing seriously, and so far, I’ve been doing really good! I’m already down 5.2 pounds, which is only a drop in the bucket for what I need to lose, but it’s enough to give me hope that I can actually do this!

Now, on the job front, though I don’t have a job yet, I am being considered for a position in LA. I don’t want to say much about it just yet, but this is the most interest I’ve gotten since I started looking, and I think it would be a great job, so keep your fingers crossed for me! But in the mean time, I’ve been freelancing for a small publishing company, and I just got a new project I’m really excited about. It’s a YA book, so I’m really excited to start working on that and making some money!

And then finally, last but most definitely not least, I’ve gotten back on the groove of writing! I was in a writing slump for a while, and just having a really hard time getting momentum, but I have been writing like crazy the last few days, and I’m feeling excited about what what I’m writing again, which is huge!

So yeah. Today, things are looking good and the future is looking bright! Here’s hoping things stay on the upswing for a while!




Motivational Monday: Your Voice is a Weapon

So, as you all know, the band Bastille is one of my big inspirations right now while I write. They are one of my favorite bands, a lot of their songs inspire me to keep pushing myself, and many of their songs remind me so much of my MCs.

With that said, this week for Motivational Monday Jennifer Austin posted a video by Angel Haze, which reminded me 1. That I absolutely love her and 2. She does an amazing song with Bastille that is also motivational to me. When I saw Bastille in concert last year, they had her come out on stage and perform it with them. I wanted to post that video, since I, of course, recorded it, but WordPress won’t let me. Wah, wah. So instead, I will provide you with the official Vevo video, which isn’t as fun, but you get to hear the song at least.

Update: I found a video on Youtube uploaded by someone who was at the same show as me, so you can enjoy this, too! (It does cut off a little early at the end, but they really only repeat the line over and over again after the cut off point, so you can still get the feel for the performance even with the abrupt cut off.)

What I really like about this song is this mantra that your voice is a weapon. I feel that way in all aspects of my life. My voice is important and deserves to be heard, whether that’s personally, politically, or creatively. Words have such power, and that’s awfully inspiring to me and motivates me to keep writing and keep working. My whole life has been devoted to affecting others with my words, through teaching, scholarship, etc., but now it’s my turn to make my words make people feel and think. I want my words to transform.

My voice is a weapon, and I’ll do with it what I can.



I’m baaaaaaaack!: Now let’s talk about characterization!

Sorry for my long hiatus! My father was in town visiting for a little over a week, and then as soon as he left, I had a minor family crisis I had to deal with, so I have not been able to write or blog.

But everything has been somewhat taken care of, and I am somewhat back to a routine, so hopefully I should be back to blogging regularly.

And today I want to talk about characterization.

I finished reading John Green’s Paper Towns, and although I have mixed feelings about the book, one thing I think he does a great job with is characterization. He includes really specific anecdotes and details about his characters that make them feel unique, and real.

For example, Quentin tells the anecdote of when he was younger at a dance class and a bully tells all the girls to say no to him when he asks them to dance, even though they aren’t allowed to say no, so when they do, he is so shocked and hurt that he starts crying to the teacher. I mean, that is SUCH a specific anecdote that really reveals a lot about the character, don’t you think? And then there is Radar, Quentin’s friend, whose parents have the largest collection of black Santas. Yeah, that’s right, BLACK SANTAS. How does he come up with this?

This is the kind of thing I need to work on with my own work. Making the characters more specific and real. But like I said, how does he come up with this stuff? Does he base it off of his own life, or real people that he knows? Is he able to just literally make the stuff up as he goes along? Does he draw from inspiration in movies and other books? I. Need. To. Know.

So what about you guys? How do you work on specific details for your characters? Is is experience, divine inspiration, or borrowed from other things?

Let me know in the comments!