Friday, 14 July 2017

#VoicesofYA tag

Jane at Maiden of the Misty Mountains has tagged me for the #VoicesofYA tag! Which is awesome, because I'd been watching it go around the blogosphere and sort of hoping someone would pick me. Thanks, Jane! ;)

What draws you to YA?
The fact that the characters are the same age as me? Roughly? Also, I feel like YA has more emotion or is more raw or interesting or something.

Describe your writing process. Do you like outlines and structure, or seeing where the story takes you?
In life, I love structure and knowing what to expect.

In writing, I once wrote a 20-page outline (okay, they were A5 sheets, but I was like thirteen) that had dissolved into a semi-first-draft, complete with dialogue, by the end. Annnd... that was as much work as the story got. Writing that had completely drained my need to write the story. (Which, considering the quality of the 'plot' and the unoriginal [read "copy-cat"] characters, was a good thing.)

Still, I WANT to plot, but I haven't found any methods that work?? Pantsing really grates on my structure-loving self and I panic whenever I try to think ahead?? Please help?!

How long have you been writing? Where are you in your journey?
I was thirteen when I started my first 'novel'. (I intended to to finish it, really I did... Instead it's the first in my folder of WIPs to finish when I figure out how to make them less flat and cliche.) (shh, don't tell them I said that; my children believe me when I tell them I love them all equally) So that was... over half a decade ago.

Now, I hope my stories are a bit better, but I'd still say I'm just starting my writing journey. I've started taking writing more seriously (I'm even trying to finish a first draft!...) but I'm still nowhere near publication or letting anyone else read my [partial] drafts. Just... no. For your own sake.

What do you need to write? Coffee? Music?
I don't drink coffee, I'm still trying to train myself to write while listening to music, and I don't snack while writing. (Writer Police: hi we're here to take away your license)

There are certain things that I need to write, though. I need to be in my room, at my desk, and no one else can be in the room. I'm just really fussy, I guess?? which isn't good if I'm away from home and need to work on my projects.

Good thing I don't leave my room much, right??

If you could offer one piece of advice to another writer, (OTHER THAN "don't give up"), what would it be?
Um... Well, something I wish I heard more is that my first draft will be junk and that's okay. I get really stressed about it. But everyone starts with a first draft, and no published author will let you read it. So my advice would be to not worry about the quality of your first draft; just finish it, and then you can shape and polish it.

What book still has you reeling from its plot twist?
Umm. I can hardly remember ANY significant plot twists. I don't know if that's because I read boring books, I just have a terrible memory, or I'm so smart nothing surprises me (obviously this is the reason).

However I probably should mention Jennifer Lynn Barnes' The Fixer - I did not see that twist about her parents.

What books are you most anticipating for this year?
I kind of... don't have a clue what's coming out this year?? I have no system for finding new books. (Except following blogs that talk about TBRs crushing them.) The Lost Kingdom of Bamarre came out this year, though, and I was waiting for that one!

In your opinion, which YA book/series has the most unique premise?

Help. I have no idea. (it's late + I'm unwell [of course I'm unwell it's week 2 of Camp hahaha]) Plus I'm always afraid of questions that say "MOST" or "FAVOURITE" or any other absolute sort of word. Because I know that once I answer the question I'll think of five other things that are better. (That's assuming I managed to answer the question at all and don't just freeze up. In this case, I just froze up. Whoops. I'll probably remember some books in time for answering comments.)

What is your all-time favourite quote from YA?
I read too fast to collect quotes. Actually, I'm sure I read some good ones - in The Fixer? The Lost Girl of Astor Street? The Wrath and the Dawn? SOMETHING I read recently, anyway. But I have no idea what it was.

Maybe I should read slower?

What book do you most hope will have a movie adaptation?
My first instinct is to say The False Prince by Jennifer Nielsen. But when I think about it, that would probably be quite violent?? (THIS IS IN NO WAY AN EXCUSE FOR YOU TO NOT READ THE BOOK. It's not graphic, I promise. [Although the third book in the trilogy... I honestly have no idea how he manages to keep going.])

So instead I'd like the Ranger's Apprentice series. But not as a movie, unless they commit to doing one for each book. [None of that rot like "here's one movie of books 1-4 in a random order :) and Halt looks notHING LIKE IN THE BOOKS :) enjoy it :) :) :)"] Maybe a TV series would be a better option??

And I'm tagging two of my Camp cabin-mates, who started their own blogs less than a month ago! They've been part of a young writers' community, The Order of the Pen, for a long time (they were the ones who created it, too), so they should have some great writing advice coming up on their blogs! And other stuff, of course (no pressure, guys xD) I'm looking forward to seeing them answer these questions!

Sarah at Pen of a Ready Writer
Julian at Saver of Memories

You should definitely go check out their blogs. They're just starting, but they're going to be awesome :) *flaps hands at you*

Want to talk about books? writing techniques? random things? Are you a plotter or a pantser?


  1. Well, TBH, Sarah and I started it together. I can't remember who had the original idea, but we talked about it for a while, and then started it up as a joint effort. Sarah just got chosen to be leader because she's more of a leader. I prefer to have people just tell me what to do. :)

    But thanks for the tag!! (Now to figure out what to do

    When I first started writing, I had no clue about this "first draft is always the worst" kinda thing. I didn't know you were supposed to edit. I was just like "ta-da, it's done!" (Good thing I knew nothing about published, or I might have just sent it right off!)

    And I'll explain my half-pantster/half-plotter method of preparing when I answer the questions myself - you might just find it helpful! (Or not. Everyone is different.)


    1. Ok, sorry! Wasn't sure. I'll fix that :)

      As a kid writing stories for school, Mum would suggest I "have another look at it", but I'd be like "NO IT IS FINISHED AND IF IT ISN'T PERFECT I DON'T WANT TO SEE IT AGAIN ANYWAY". 'Second draft' was not in my vocabulary!

      I'll keep an eye out for your answers, Julian - sounds like you have a happy medium ('plantser'?) that could be helpful for me to read about!

  2. Thanks for tagging me, Jem! I'm looking forward to answering these questions!

    Both Jules and I formed tOotP, back in 2014.

    1. You're welcome, and I look forward to reading your answers, Sarah!

      Ah, okay, I've fixed that now!

  3. (I don't snack either while writing, but shhhh don't tell anyone.) I'm glad you did the tag; I always enjoy reading your answers! And can we just appreciate how great your gif choices are? They're excellent. XD

    1. (I need both hands to type, how am I supposed to snack?? [also my parents never really encouraged snacking, which is probably the real reason xD])

      I'm glad you enjoyed it, Melissa! (and thanks! *preens* *and hunts down more gifs*)

  4. YAY YOU DID IT. *bounces* I'm so glad that I tagged you if you'd been sitting waiting for it. SAME HERE ACTUALLY. I will admit, every post of it that I saw, I'd scroll down and see if my name was there and sigh and read the post. XD I'm weird sometimes. *shrugs*

    I really loved reading your answers. (and I shall definitely be stalking this Sarah and Julian *sneaky ninja face* :P)

    1. I'd scroll down and check for my name too, Jane! so thanks for tagging me... xD *shrugs* *and weirds with you*

      (and yesss go stalk their blogs xD)

    2. [I mean that's what I used to do. Scroll down and check. I worded that weird??]

  5. I hate coffee and usually don't eat while writing... Unless it's chocolate. I generally just take a snack break.

    And also, THE ASCENDANCE TRILOGY YES. Although it would be rather violent. Probably not something for my little sister to watch. AND OH MY GOODNESS. HOW ON EARTH DOES SAGE (spoiler I still think of him as Sage *hides*) KEEP GOING. I have had SPOILER four broken bones, three separate times, and they were no picnic. I am not sure it would have even been possible for him to keep going. END OF SPOILERISH THING.

    Oh, and definitely a plantser. That's... Ahem... A plotter and a pantser. Great post!

    1. It always seemed to me that ALL writers lived off coffee, but I'm starting to 'meet' more and more who dislike it, which makes me hope I can be a writer regardless ;)

      I still think of him as Sage too... and I know he's really stubborn, and would probably walk on two broken legs just to spite someone, but is it physically possible?? You've had four broken bones? ouch! I've never broken any (so you have the advantage over me when it comes to writing injuries xD)

      Plantser sounds like a great middle ground :) Thanks for reading, Zane!

    2. I'm not sure how bad he broke his leg, but I broke my femur clean in half and I literally could not move. With my broken arms though, it wasn't that bad. They were fractured. If his leg was just fractured, he could probably hobble around. But definitely not if it was a complete break!😉

      And yes, it has come in handy writing injuries. And hospitals. 😁

    3. Ouch! Has your femur healed completely, Zane? Yes, a complete break definitely sounds physically impossible to walk on... no matter how stubborn Sage was xD

      I've read tales of writers being distracted from quite painful things (injuries, childbirth, etc!) by thoughts of "Oh well, this will help me write that next book!" Did you think that at all??

    4. Yes, it has! <3 I was in traction all night the day it happened and went into surgery the next morning. Apparently I was supposed to be able to walk on it immediately???

      I had a lot of pain medicine so I was kind of out of it for a while, but yes, I did think that!! :D Now I know how to write broken legs AND hospitals. It actually DID help me write one scene!! ;D

    5. I'm glad to hear that you're completely recovered :) (And that - although it must have been painful - you could at least use the experience!)

  6. This was so much fun to read! :D

  7. Your plotting stories are the best. Same with me- I'm so awkward when it comes to actually plotting.

    1. When I try to plot, all my important points are in the wrong spots (according to standard narrative arcs, anyway) and so I leave plotting and just write. ;) So are you a pantser, Faith?

  8. YOU WERE TAGGED ON THIS ASDFJKL; (sorry, I just really like the tag xD).

    I AM A HARDCORE PLOTTER. My outlining process takes about a month these days, but is totally worth it. I guess I'm not exhausted by the story when I actually write the first draft because I like to put words on the page in a creative way??? idk. I hope you find something that works for you soon! YOU'VE GOT THIS FIRST DRAFT. *hands you motivational pizza* (*whispers* that's really the only thing you need to be a writer ;)

    audrey caylin

    1. TELL ME YOUR SECRETS, O HARDCORE PLOTTER AUDREY. I hope I find a system that words for me, too - maybe I'd have a better rate for finishing stories then xD *accepts motivation pizza gratefully* *offers lamingtons in exchange*

  9. Omg Ranger's Apprentice would make SUCH a good TV series!! I would even be 100% okay if they did it animated?!? Like How To Train Your Dragon style. :') And pls let them make the characters look right. We don't ask for much.😂

    Also I don't eat or listen to music while I write! I don't drink coffee either because it makes me sleepy. (I KNOW. MY BRAIN IS WIERD.😂) So you're not alone!

    And I also agree that YA just seems...more real?! More interested in kicking one in the feels and diving into deep matters that really make you think? I also like how it's shorter/more concise and very often super funny. :')

    1. Nope, we bookworms don't ask for much. Just every word of the original dialogue (especially Halt's) and for every character to look EXACTLY HOW WE PICTURED THEM and the exact plot with all the correct settings and all the little details. We are very easygoing bookworms. xD

      I love how you've given your opinion of YA as "YA goal = to kick one in the feels THEREFORE YA = the best" x')

      Thanks for stopping by, Cait!

  10. I have to be alone, too! And the only music I can listen to if I listen to any at all is instrumental. There's some on YouTube that's supposed to help you focus. Also, I don't usually eat anything or drink coffee. I don't even like coffee.

    Nice blog! :D

    1. I agree - I can only listen to instrumental music while I write (otherwise I try to sing along). Two Steps From Hell (ignore the name!!) does awesome instrumental music for movie soundtracks and stuff - I like Cannon in D Minor. (Cannon. That was not a typo ;)

      *high five for non-coffee-drinking writers*

      Thanks, Ivie!

    2. Thank you for the follow. I really appreciate it and it means a lot to me. :D
      I'll have to check that out. I definitely prefer instrumental music over lyrical music when writing. :)

    3. I know I'd checked out your blog before... I thought I was already following you!

    4. That's okay! :D I just try to make a point to thank everyone who follows me because it truly does mean a lot to me. I try to check out their blogs, too, and comment on posts that they make. Just my way of showing thanks and also checking out some sweet blogs. :)


Comment away! I read all comments - no matter how old the post may be! - and I'll try to reply. Just keep your words appropriate so I won't have to delete your comment (I'd hate to have to do that).