Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!


I'm posting before I go home for break because otherwise I won't be able too! :(
My computer is still at the doctors. :/ But I'm thankful Aladdin lets me use his.

Thanksgiving is my mother's birthday! (My parents were born around holidays, Mom  is Thanksgiving, Daddy is Christmas, and my bubba and I are Easter...we're a convenient family.) Anyway, I'm thankful for that! haha.

I'm thankful for my wonderful followers (ALL of them, blogger, fb, twitter). I'm so thankful I can ask questions and learn about different writers and skills. Not even a year ago, I started blogging seriously at the motivation of Aladdin and it worked! I never thought I could build such a wonderful friend base on my blog and twitter.

I'm also thankful I am a Gates Millennium Scholar and I don't have to worry about paying for college. I'm thankful I am in college. I'm thankful for having the ability to write (and that attention span LOL).

I'm thankful for the support I have, especially from my Dad and Mom. Without a doubt, they believe I will be a famous author. I'm also thankful for the array of people who believe that, too, cause in the end...people who believe in your motivate you the most.





What are you thankful for?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The College Guide to Writing A Novel

Library at Trinity College, Dublin: It was beautiful.

I was thinking about this the other day and I couldn't quite see how I could possibly managed to be that great writer. You know, the one who wakes up at 4am to work on their novel because there isn't enough time in a day? Or the one who, after midnight, begins their edits? Or the one who is determined to find time to write in a day.

Let me explain: If I woke up at 4am, well..that just wouldn't happen first of all. I already do not fall asleep until like 1...2...or 3am (last night it was 3am). The chances of me waking up early to write are zero. But let's say hypothetically, I did. Well, I wouldn't write--why? Well, I'd think of all the homework I could get out of the way. For instance, I have three papers due, an art history exam, and some reviews and responses to write for Body Image. My reasoning is: If I get these out of the way, I can write. Writing is my reward for doing homework.

Okay, now you want to know why I don't write when I finish homework? Well sometimes I do, but other times it's as if the homework NEVER ends. I mean, I'm making straight A's this semester! (YAY!) Never done that before (it's because I don't have a job), and you'd think I'd do more because I don't have a job and I only have school. Well, I'm a Senior first off, and if I don't have a tight schedule (which I don't), I don't feel motivated.

That said, now that I'm attempting to get my straight A's in order and am surprised by how well I'm doing, I'm freaked out! I don't want to compromise this!

However, unlike other years, I have had boughs of wonderful inspiration to write. It's all my creative energy returning because I'm not so bogged down in school and I love it. The question is, how do I managed these boughs and go to school? Not even simply school, but when I'm busy?

Here's what I do...and it's probably not the best advice, but it works!



1) I write in a boring class. 
I know it's horrible, but I happen to write a ton in Art History. There is a reason: we don't have to take notes and all I need to be there fore is to recognize pictures. Granted, I'm an English major in a predominately Art History major room, but I being studying a month ahead of the exam cause I know I'm not a seasoned Art History buff.


2) Write before class. Especially if it's lecture!
Usually I wrote on notebooks, but recently I've been writing a lot on my Itouch and I always make sure I write before class. I suppose this could be said of waiting on appointments or really anything. The point is, I know when I get home, I'm probably not going to be writing, so I better do it on campus when my mind is working.



3) Use a planner
I don't use the planner to schedule writing time, I use it to plan out my weeks, meaning: I plan to do all my homework at the beginning of the week so I can have free time at the end of it. This doesn't always work if I have an exam, but it gives me a good chunk of time to write!


4) Realize school is important 
It's so hard for me to choose between writing and school. And I get super disappointed when my mind is like "You know what you have to do!" And I do. Remember--we're in college for a reason, we're always writers even if we don't get to write like we want. So, if you have a ton of homework and a busy week, focus on that. Writing will come later.



5) However, if you're stressed
Try and write in some way--a blog for instance. I know when I wasn't writing (which is my stress reliever) I was all sorts of tired and stressed and it was not good! And I think it hindered me more than anything. It also stressed me out to think I wasn't focusing on my book and I was becoming a terrible writing because of that, which brings me to #6.



6) You aren't a bad writer if you don't write
Can't tell you how many times I felt I was losing my ability to write. In college, you're focused so much energy on so many subjects which include papers, lectures, books, some super difficult thoughts. It's all working your mind really well, and it takes your creative ability away. I'm just now getting mine back. You know what I realized? I needed those two years away from my novel though--that was that break I needed so I could fall in love with my book again. So don't take it so negatively as I did and think "this will help me love my writing once again!"

I hope those helped even those of you who aren't in school. =)
Much love!
& Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I challenge you!

Hey guys!
GRE is over! I'm so glad. I hope I never have to take that again! Also, my computer is sick. :( It's at the doctors and it's taking FOREVER to get it back...so until then...I have nothing to edit!! However, I've rewritten dialogue for the end of my book and I'm SOOOO excited!

Anyways.

Today I wanted to talk about setting goals.

Today I am going to present everyone with a challenge. Not one you have to do, but one that will allow you to set goals. The best thing about it? No deadlines!

What am I talking about? Well, a bucket list of sorts. I already have one. My Junior year of High School, my English teacher had us write one. Mine looks a little like this:

1. Get an agent
2. Get published
3. Get on the New York Times best-seller list.
4. Be number one

You get the idea...lol, but I totally intend to accomplish all of these! :p

Your goal is to make a list, start with 100 things. What I'm going to do is make my goals into a poster and hang it on my wall. Every morning when I wake up, I'm going to be more dedicated to this idea. I WILL be unstoppable if I have undying determination. I know this in my heart and nothing is truer than that feeling!

I'll post a picture when I make my poster! I just came up with the idea today and I'm excited to get started!

So, accept my challenge?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Friday, November 4, 2011

Update!

Okay, so...I haven't been around much & this is why:

Today I had a History Exam,
This weekend I have to write history paper, finish 3 response papers for body image, study for GRE.
Next week I have a Classics Exam + Studying for GRE + writing art history exam + Maybe Trying to write poetry essay.
Then if I haven't done the poetry essay, I MUST do that! Have another Art History exam (UGH), remember to finish applying to grad school, and maybe paint a picture for poetry if I have time...and revise all my poems from poetry class like my prof asked.

Yep...thankfully, this isn't all coming at once...I just feel as though I should get things done, then I can work on my novel!
I've still be doing this BTW - I actually wrote the first chapter of my third book (YAY). Well, I had 400 pages of it written, decided I didn't know if I liked how it was going and decided to start all over again! It's so hard to write when you're focused on the above.

DID I MENTION I WAS JOB HUNTING!!?!? OMG. AND I enrolled in 21 hours for next semester. Positive? I will declare my history minor at the end of the month, and I will graduate in May 2012.

WOW!

Hopefully I will visit blogs Tuesdays and Thursday!

<3 you all!!

EDIT: ALSO, I WANTED TO TELL YOU ALL, I'M JUST FIGURING OUT I HAVEN'T FOLLOWED SOME OF YOU BACK! I'M WORKING ON IT!! I LOVE ALL YOUR BLOGS, AND TRY TO COMMENT AS MUCH AS I CAN!

Ashley

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Insecure Writer's Support Group


Well, today is my first Insecure Writer's Support Group post. Lol.

I guess I should talk about a very hopeless feeling I get quite often and how I deal with it. This feeling is the feeling that I will never get published. The wonderful Barbara Kloss says that you must figure out why you want to write before you can decide anything else.

I agree. I've been writing for 8 years, going on 9 (I always joke that writers say it take 10 years to get published, and that means I only have a couple more to wait!) When I was younger, I had a very...glamours view of what a writers life was like. It mimicked a celebrities life. I knew though, that wasn't why I wanted to write. I loved my books far too much and felt too much of a passion for them, besides, we know that rarely is a writer's life that of a celebrities. Despite this, that does remain a goal of mine.

I feel insecure about admitting this. I don't know how many of us dream about being a famous author, but I did and I still do. When I say this, however, I feel like the worth of my novels goes down. I feel like I'm setting myself up for failure. I'm saying in one respect I am good enough for this, and in another that seems to be all I care about, but here's my idea on author fame:

If you're famous, that means people, loads of people from EVERYWHERE are reading your books and in love with your characters just as much as you are. You can obsess over details like they do, stay immersed in the world longer, the longer your fans love it.

 I cannot tell you how exciting the thought of having several different covers and books in different languages is. Isn't it crazy that words you have written would be in another country and adored? It's a crazy thought, but one I totally don't mind finding in my reality.

I can answer Barbara's question: I want to write because I want to share my books with people everywhere. Now, I just have to figure out the best way to do that. Perhaps there should be no shame in wanting this and wanting to be a famous author.

So, is anyone else insecure about their wishes to be a famous author? Do you feel bad when you admit to it? I feel arrogant, and feel as though I'm writing for the wrong reasons.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy Halloween!


I hope everyone had a great Halloween! I sure did! I carved some pumpkins, first time in my life! I don't have pics, sadly. :/


Aladdin and I dressed up! He was Aladdin last year, but this year he was Pacha from the Emperor's New Grove!


We put a llama on his poncho, it could either have been Cuzco or he could just say he was a Peruvian if people didn't know who he was! But they did!!

I also made more shirts!!



Okay!! That's my update! I'm off to write out history essays for my exam Friday and write a history paper!

<3