How to Decompress during a Busy Week

Lately, I’ve noticed that my schedule has been getting more and more congested. While I could manage to write blog posts every week in the past, nowadays it feels like I’m straining my brain in order to produce words.

And I can’t really blame it on myself, can I? People get busy; some of you might be having exams at school. Some others might just land on their dream jobs and are currently working their best in the new environment. Some might have even reached parenthood.

Whatever stage of life you’re in, there’s bound to be something that is draining your energy.

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Photo by Aaron Sebastian on Unsplash

I am no exception.

Lately, I’ve been involved in two increasingly demanding projects that I have to babysit every single day.  I even had to come to the office during weekends to ensure the deadlines are met. This is certainly not an ideal situation for me to channel my creative writing passion. Continue reading

Of Downed Flight, Grief, and Flowers

The other day, I saw the news about the JT610 plane crash. This wasn’t the first time a plane crash had happened, of course, but as I scrolled the feed on my Twitter and Instagram, I had come to realize that more and more people were posting news about the incident.

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Photo by Milos Prelevic on Unsplash

I found it fascinating, that instead of the cold, monotonous, professional tone of a newscaster voice that dictates how many people died, how the engine failure happened, and what the airline company promised to compensate, there were more and more people commenting about the victims’ lives.

Inside that airplane, there were more than 100 people aboard. Some of them were newlyweds. Some of them were expecting to be married. Some of them were going to see their family and friendsonly to end up in an unfortunate accident.

I shuddered when I thought about being inside that very airplane. What if I were in there? Who would be the last person I contacted before I took off? What would I have said? During the time when the plane fell, would I even stop to think about somethinganything? Continue reading

NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 4

NaNoWrimo 2018 is just around the corner, guys. How is your writer’s notebook coming along? If you haven’t started filling in the information for your story’s settings, then I hope this blog post is what you’re looking for. (But even if you’re not doing NaNo, I hope these articles will prove to be useful to anyone who’s planning to work on a novel project.)

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Previously, we have covered how I set up my project statistics, plotting, and character sheets in my writer’s notebook. I’ll leave the relevant links down below, in case you’ve missed some of them:

Read more: NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 1 (Project Statistics)

Read more: NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 2 (Plotting)

Read more: NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 1 (Character Sheets)

When you work on your plotting, you are defining “what happens with your story” and “how does it happen”. Similarly, when you work on your character sheetsyou are defining the “who is involved” and “why are they involved”. Settingson the other hand, is simply defining “where does the story take place” and “when is this happening”.

A good story doesn’t only need to have a solid plot and characters, but it also needs enough information about the when and where the story takes place. Imagine watching a stage play; settings are the backdrops behind the characters; the ambiance and lightings. They never take center stage, but they are important nonetheless.

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Photo by Tom Kulczycki on Unsplash

Personally, my golden rule with having a “good enough” settings information for my novel project is to have just enough information so I can imagine being in the story with no problem.

It sounds rather vague, I know. But I will elaborate this in more details below. Continue reading

NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 3

It’s the third week of Preptober, and NaNoWriMo 2018 is just around the corner, everyone! Now that we have our project statistics and plot established, we’re going to move on to perhaps the most exciting bits to write in your writer’s notebook: characters!

Read more: NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 1 (Project Statistics)

Read more: NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 2 (Plotting)

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It is no secret that what I love the most about writing a book is the characters. After all, they’re the ones keeping me awake at night, pleading to me so I could stay up for a couple more hours and write the continuation of their stories. Most of the time, this means pulling an all-nighter just to get the story written.

And although it means me catching a cold, familiarizing myself with my characters allow me to write my stories faster.

Disclaimer: As my previous post, unfortunately, I wouldn’t be able to disclose the characters of my upcoming project, since:

  1. They are still very confidentialI haven’t written the manuscript yet!
  2. They are mostly incomplete, as I tend to add more information as I draft my manuscript.

With that said, here is how I record information about my characters inside my writer’s notebook. Continue reading

NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 2

We’re less than a month away from NaNoWriMo, everyone! In the last post, I’ve talked quite extensively about how I set up my writer’s notebook in preparation of NaNoWriMo—especially in defining the project statistics and brainstorming for the story. This week, we’re going to tackle the heart of any novel: the plot.

Read more: NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – Part 1

The plot is what makes your story. It is what happens to your characters, and also what happens after it happens. It is the action and reaction, the cause and consequence of everything that transpires inside your fictional realm. It could be the most exciting part of writing a book, as well as the most frustrating.

 

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/brown-wooden-desk-159618/

Personally, I’ve never been a good match with plotting. More often than not, I would know all about my characters, locations, and even wrap up my research for the project—but still, have no clue about what happens inside my book. Sounds crazy, I know, but it happens all the time. Continue reading

NaNoWriMo 2018 Prep: Setting Up a Writer’s Notebook – part 1

Happy Preptober, everyone! In this week’s post, I’m going to share with you how I set up my writer’s notebook for my NaNoWriMo project.

Yes, I have decided to participate in NaNoWriMo 2018.

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In case you didn’t know what I was talking about, which I highly doubt, especially if you’re reading my blog, NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month, is a global event in which many writers from all over the globe take on the challenge to write an entire novel of 50,000 words within the month of November. Preptober, on the other hand, is what NaNoWriMo veterans use to call the month leading towards NaNoWriMoOctober.

Now I’ve talked quite extensively about how I used a Midori Style Traveler’s Notebook as my writer’s notebook last year, but I’ve decided to shake things up a little bit for this year’s challenge. Don’t worryI still use my Midori Style Traveler’s Notebook regularly. I just thought that for NaNoWriMo 2018, I would need a separate system to organize my thoughts about the writing project.

And since I am planning to start a new project, I thought that I could use the occasion to share with you guys a more in-depth look at how I build my personal writer’s notebook. Continue reading

My Favorite Writing VLOGS on Youtube

I have this strange hobby of learning how other authors work on their projects. This sometimes means stalking their Instagram feeds, or even their Twitter pages. But one of my favorite pastimes, aside from blog walking, is to watch Writing VLOGS on Youtube.

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/mokup-smartphone-technology-phone-34407/

There is just something so productively encouraging about seeing how other writers struggle, and finally, emerge victorious from this figurative war against their writer’s block, for example.

That being said, here are some of my favorite Writing-related VLOGS I’ve found on Youtube. They might prove to be either educational, inspirational, or both. Please enjoy this master list! Continue reading