I make the moves up as I go

I’ve never been one to plan my writing. Sure, I’ve done some whiteboard exercises to try to think about the plot, but every time I tried to actually sit down and create some form of organization my brain goes, nah, you don’t need that. There goes my thought process. *POOF*

Yeah, so what the hell do I do exactly? I daydream. I let my mind wander and then words come out. Half the time I feel like I’m channelling a spirit. More than often, I’m even surprised at what I write. It’s a strange process and I’m sure every creative person goes through their own version. Some have charts, and graphs, and a whole wack of documents to back up their plots. I got a sticky note that I crumpled and decided not to listen to. Yeah. Sometimes I feel painfully underprepared, but who the hell is really ready for inspiration?

And the thing is, inspiration is such a fickle thing, I mean, it can hit you when you’re in the shower, on the toilet, or that last few minutes before you fall asleep. This has happened to me in all three instances and it sucks. I’ve made a mad dash, towel on, soap in my hair to get to my phone and dictate an email to myself. Or, half-assed reached for my phone, only to knock it further, and then half crawl down off the bed to get it and perform some kind of cracked out gymnastics to pull myself back UP into bed to dictate on my phone. I do think the bathroom is some sort of sanctuary though. It’s the only place I can truly be alone with my thoughts and they tend to attack me when I’m not prepared. If I could have an office that looked like a bathroom, I might be able to churn out stories faster? Who knows!

All this to say, I don’t know what I’m doing and I’m okay with it. I’ll keep on cruisin’.

Taylor Swift, Shake It Off, 1989

 

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The writing journey so far

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It’s important to reflect during the writing process. Right now, I’ve sent out first draft ARCs and I’m hoping my beta readers are not making voodoo dolls of me. As I said before, no one is safe in A Raven’s Revenge and I highly recommend having a box of tissues with you when you read the book.

That said, writing is a funny thing, I mean you take your deepest thoughts and basically share them with strangers. Yeah, not nerve-wracking at all. Nope. The love and care that you pour into your characters only to brutally slaughter them (sometimes). It’s a strange process. Clearly, not everyone kills their characters, but I tend to and it’s hard to write sometimes. Yet, with every battle a sacrifice must be made and who else to do that than the good guy. Perhaps if you’re Loki there’s an exception, but most often it’s not who you want to die.

While writing A Raven’s Revenge, I did have a moment where I wasn’t sure what the heck I was doing. Okay, several such moments, and I had to question myself. I suppose that’s common. How is this the only ‘occupation’ that is looked at like a hobby? I feel weird when I tell people that I’m a writer because they often ask me stupid follow-up questions:

1. What have you written that I might have read?
> Um…you’ve probably never heard of me and now this is awkward because you judge my success on being appealing to the masses. Thanks, jackass.

2. Are you any good?
> Depends on what you think is ‘good’.

3. Why don’t you make your story into a movie?
> Yeah, I’ll get right on that.

Honestly.

I know my answers are sarcastic, but it just is annoying to hear so often. My day job is more impressive, as I’m a Content Writer and I’ve worked on some really big projects that people would actually recognize. The hope/dream of most writers, or anyone artistic for that matter, is to say adios to their day job and do writing full-time. One day I’ll get there, even if I’m 80 when it happens. As much as I’m realistic, I’m also a dreamer, and those sides fight all the time. Besides the random story ideas that pop into my head, I have to make room for the self-doubt and manic bouts where I believe I’m freaking amazing. Such a rollercoaster.

For now, I’m going to push through, polish up the first draft and publish it. I plan on writing the third instalment and getting that out there as well. After the Raven Wing series, well, I’m not sure.

Do I write a spin-off of Tom and Moira? Or, do I go in another direction completely? I have a dystopian story up my sleeve that I think could be bigger than Divergent/Hunger Games because it’s honestly unlike anything out there. So yeah, what to do?

Not sure, but let’s roll the dice and see.

 

50,000 words, so now what?

On July 28, 2018, I finally finished the first draft of A Raven’s Revenge. Just saying those words is enough to make me light headed. Mind you, this is the first draft, I probably will tear it apart and re-write it a few times. Or, I might just hit it out of the park? Who knows. Well, my editor really, but that has yet to be determined.

What happens now?

I’m sending the story to a few beta readers and then I wait.

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And I wait, and I think about what I should be doing with my time, like creating a marketing plan, but no. Instead, I’m wondering what these lovely people are thinking about my story and if they are crying or dying, or plotting to murder me because I’ve killed a character…actually two characters.

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Wait a minute, I killed three, four, oh shoot, this is getting bad…I’m fairly certain I killed seven characters with a possible eighth. Yeah, a whole lot of death happens in this one. And NO ONE is safe. It pained me to do what I did to Moira. I had to take a break after I wrote it, and Tom, and Darien, oh that one hurt, and Justice. Yeah, it’s times like these that I’m glad I use a pen name. I don’t think I could handle anyone coming to my door yelling at me.

Safe to say, I feel kinda bad, but there’s always book three! I suppose I should start writing that one. I already have five new chapters and I’m introducing a special character in honour of a friend who lost his wife. I’m going to introduce her as a mutant with amazing powers.

So close…I can almost taste it

I finally finished a particular chapter that had been giving me a headache. It’s now a matter of writing one more death scene (my apologies in advance, as this is going to cause a spike in tissue sales), and then I can smooth over the holes in the plaster so to say.

Whoohoo! I may actually get freaking ARCs out sooner than I think. Mind you, this first draft is rough and I will need to find some very dedicated Betas. Looks like I may be a tad shy under 50,000 words, but I think these are some very choice words and I probably overwrote with A Raven’s Touch. Either way, I’ve learned from writing my first book, and I’m rather happy just to get the story out instead of it sitting in my head running amok. 

 

 

46,264 words, but I’m not counting…

I’m so damn close to a first draft and I’ve finally figured out how I’m going to connect the main story to the ending I’ve already written. I had to take a mental break, step back, evaluate, and talk out loud till it came to me.

All I can say is I hope you guys don’t mind getting your heart broken into a thousand pieces because no one is safe. Every character gets effed up pretty bad be it physically or emotionally, or both. There’s nothing holding back the characters as they’re literally in Hell, plus, Justice has nothing to lose since she’s basically lost everything she ever held dear anyway.

What happens when characters break and let their anger get the best of them? In the case of Justice, a whole lot of biblical whoop ass.

I’m not writing this for the sake of punishing my characters, but it really shows their growth and what they’re willing to do in the name of righteousness and all things ‘good’. In the process, perhaps they become a little bad. Killing in the name of God has always been a strange occurrence. Those with ‘holy orders’ obey, but do they enjoy the slaughter? It’s hard to say.

Either way, I’m having a lot of fun writing this and it feels like an amazing stress relief, even though I apologize in advance for Moira and Tom. Please don’t hate me.

More words to the fire

Well, Happy Good Friday to everyone celebrating. May I say this has been an exceptionally good Friday for my word count. I managed to write 800 words today and frankly, that has been quite the day for me. I can’t even recall the last time this happened, maybe two years ago? Man, I need more long weekends. Linda Bloodworth writing word countThank you to everyone who gave their comments on the sample of A Raven’s Revenge.

If you’re wondering what I’m talking about, here’s the beginning portion of my upcoming book. Mind you, it’s not edited, nor may it be the final version.

Something had gone wrong with our descent into Hell. Pitch black, I couldn’t see a thing. Moving my shoulders I felt the familiar weight of my backpack. At least that made it through, but where the heck was everyone else? Was Hell supposed to be this black? Sure, I didn’t expect a red cloven-hoofed devils with pitchforks greeting, but this void brought out the claustrophobic in me. I reached out to touch anything hoping beyond hope to find a clue to where my friends were, but only felt the air. Then, I tapped forward with my foot, but stopped; for all I knew, I was walking toward a cliff. For someone with a heart full of faith, I wasn’t going to take stupid risks, especially not here.

I felt cold sweat run down my spine, my breath catch in my throat as my heart beat like crazy – thudthudthudthudthud. I clasped a hand to my chest, somehow thinking it could force my heart to slow down. Instead, heat flared on the back of my neck as electrifying panic spread through me. Something about being surrounded by darkness triggered an alarm in me that was going off in full effect.

“No, not here, not now,”

Each gasp for air felt like a gulp of water as I drowned in my own anxiety.

“It can’t end this way,” I thought.

Falling to my knees, I closed my eyes and thought of my friends.

“Darien,” I croaked in between breaths. “Moira. Tom.”

Today, I managed to give Darien a deeper backstory with his previous friends before he met Justice. Also, I invented the Elf Royal Army of Land, Sea, and Air. The sea elves are a little bit different with their double row of sharp teeth. I’m excited about this and when that happens I think things are going to be pretty interesting.

40 K, baby!

It’s been a while as my life has been flipped upside down at my day job and today I pushed myself to put some words to paper. I updated to the new Scrivener, so the screenshot looks a little different, but the result is all I care about.Screen Shot 2018-03-22 at 3.59.33 PM

Woohoo, I say! Woo-freaking-hoo! I’m officially 10K away from a proper novel length and I feel like I have at least that many words to write before I can wrap this puppy up and look for an editor.

I’ve learned a lot from my first book. This time, I have to say, it’s been different. I feel more in control of my characters and I feel like I have more freedom to express myself. I’ve enjoyed writing this story. It certainly has given me the platform to let my inner demons out. I believe that’s what writing should be like anyway. An inner expression brought forth into the world.