Monday, June 19, 2017


Shoutout to Sarah Koep: you are the most wonderful bean I know. Thank you for your support and love. I'm holding you to the promise about the broken leg. Sending all my love. Can't wait to see you again.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Experiment #5: Write a story in media res

            "Leo, you don't have to do this," I placed my space phone on the counter and let the holograph of Leo enter the space surrounding it. He looked a little older than he did when I left him to come to the new planet of Lires last year. His hair had grown out and now fell in a dark halo framing his face. He was taller and more muscular. I couldn't imagine what he must have gone through in his undercover military training. He didn't like to talk much about it, so I didn't ask. His normally bronzed skin had become three shades darker, probably from the amount of time he spent running outside in his free time. The only thing that had really remained unchanged were his piercing blue eyes. I could see his childhood self in them still.
          "Liv, no offense, but you're gonna get yourself killed if you try to go into this Hexa Palace invasion alone," he pleaded with me,"and no one knows you better than I do. I will know exactly how to cover you when you let a guard steal your blaster right out of your hands."
         He always joked around like that; especially when he was stressed about something and this definitely qualified as a Leo stressor, "That was one time! You can't hold that over me forever."
        "One time, my butt. If I let you go into the palace alone, we both know the first thing to go will be your blaster. Oh, and by the way, never letting that one go," his blinking holograph paced across my counter.
        Leo had a point, not that I would ever admit that to him. Going into the Hexa Palace alone was a big risk, even for me. I had been training for this for years, but I wasn't exactly sure if any amount of preparation would set me up to win against a fleet of palace guards and the Hexa military. The truth was I would have loved to have Leo by my side for the mission; the two of us had always been most successful together. General Axel always told us that while we could probably each save a nation alone, we had the power to save the whole galaxy together. This was just the first time we were actually placed in a situation that required us to save the galaxy which basically put the whole universe on our shoulders...literally. The real reason I didn't want Leo to join me was because I didn't want to lose my best friend. He was dangerously impulsive. I knew that if Leo got hurt or worse I could't forgive myself. I would rather die myself than watch him lose his life for us.
      "If you promise me that you'll-," that was all I got out of my mouth before I watched hologram Leo start jumping up and down on my counter as he punched the air.
     "Yes! Yes! Yes! Thank you, Liv! I won't let you do and I promise I will be careful and use my brain...occasionally! Liv and Leo off to save the universe! I'm so happy I could kiss you!" he was talking so fast, I could hardly keep up with him, but that last part made my face burn red.
      Hoping he would't see, I turned my face and pretended to be searching for something on the table in front of me. Once I was sure my face was no longer the color of a rose, I turned back to face Leo's hologram,"Alright, be here by morning. I will meet you at The Star Tavern. We have a universe to save."

Experiment #4: Setting and character outline for play


The setting of this play is on an alien planet. It is inhabited by a variety of sects of aliens. The terrain is rather rugged on the outskirts of the planet but the center is a major city. The city is extremely modern and high tech. There are floating skyscrapers and a lot of bright lights at night. The majority of the scenes take place within the city as the human secret agent follows one of the higher ups in the alien government. The major scenes occur in a restaurant, the girls bathroom of that restaurant, the secret agent headquarters, and the Commanders palace.

Character Outline:

-Secret Agent Olivia Blank: Olivia is the secret agent assigned to follow Madame Justine on this alien planet and find as much information as she can on her. Olivia is eager to do her job well and prove herself but she doesn't always do the best job on her assignment. She is witty and charismatic. She is about 20 years-old. She is a brunette and has green eyes. Leo is her best friend and fellow agent. General Axel is in charge of the mission and she reports to him. Her character develops over the course of the play as she learns more about how to be a good agent and realizes that the only person she needs to prove herself to is herself.
-Leo: Leo is also a secret agent but he is often times sent in disguise to work as a soldier in the U.S. Military. He is very daring and sporadic. He doesn't really think anything through which can come back to bite him at times. He is very sarcastic and his biggest fear is having to discuss the female menstrual cycle. Era sees a picture of him on the Z-web (the alien version of the internet) and has a huge crush on him. However, Leo is interested in his best friend Olivia. Olivia is entirely unaware of this. Leo has jet black hair and blue eyes. He and Olivia met in middle school and have been friends ever since.
-General Axel: He is the head of the Secret Agent Agency for the U.S. He is an older man, probably in his late 50's. He has no children of his own anymore, since his only son passed away a few years ago in a Plygot (an evil sect of the alien planet) attack. He struggles with this deeply. He views Leo and Olivia like his own children. While he can be reserved and cold at times; he has moments of kindness where he lets go. He has a gray beard and blue eyes. He is losing his hair but he still has some.
-Commander: The Commander is pretty much an evil dictator. He is the leader of the Hexa Sect. He is extremely wealthy and very powerful within the alien government. He is very hard on his daughter, Era.
-Madame Justine: Madame Justine is half-alien and half-human. She is very the equivalent of a duchess. She is from a different sect than The Commander and is having an affair with him. Her objective is to get him to sign a treaty between the two sects or so it seems. She is actually trying to marry him, assassinate him, blame it on someone else, and take over his sect. She is definitely a villain.
-Mox: Mox is one of Era's best friends. She is the leader of the trio of alien girls. She is kind of bossy and very opinionated, but she means well. She is very popular at their alien high school and gets invited to all the parties in the city. She is obsessed with her image and the image of others. She spends the majority of her time on the Z-web.
-Castra: Castra is Era's other best friend. She is far more of a follower than a leader and pretty much does whatever Mox tells her to. She is very agreeable but only because she is afraid that if she disagrees with Mox she will be kicked out of the group.
-Era: Era is quieter than the other two girls. She doesn't really agree with a lot of Mox's views which can create conflict at times. She is in love with Leo and spends a lot of her time trying to figure out how to contact him on Earth. She lives in the palace with her father and despises him. She eventually befriends Olivia Blank and helps her in overthrowing both her father and Madame Justine. She finds herself and leaves behind her old friends.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Word Count Tuesday

What am I working on? 

I am working on some poems for my portfolio and journaling as usual. 

How do I like the process? 

Poetry is not my forte, but I am actually enjoying experimenting with it so far. It's allowing me to expand my skills as a writer.

What am I reading? 

The One by Kiera Cass

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Experiment #3: Letter to my 100 year old self

A letter to my hundred year old self

Dear me,

There are so many paths I could have taken, I don't want to assume I took just one. I want to assume that they all collided. I wish to think that all of those paths came snaking together, twisting around each other, and that I made something beautiful out of it all.

Sometimes I believe in fate and I think that my life is set out a certain way. I believe at times I am destined to follow a preset path. Other times I think it's all up to wild chance and that all the power of where I go next falls in my hands. I wouldn't be disappointed by any such path as long as I lived a happy life. If I found joy and spread that joy with others then that's enough for me.

I always wonder what I will look like as an old lady. I stare in the mirror and try to imagine where the wrinkles will settle themselves in and how my body will deteriorate over time. I wonder if aging will bother me like it does some people. I don't believe it will, but anything is possible. I hope I have long braids like my Great Grandma. I never met her but my mom said until the day she died she kept her gray hair in two long braids that went all the way down her back. Yes, I'd like that if I could. Future self, try to grow your hair out if you don't have it long. Do it just for the heck of it. I hope they've found a way to speed up hair growth in the future. Use it if they have.

I can't imagine all I must have seen at 100 years old. I'm often frightened about the lengths technology may go in the future. It's a scary thing how much people care about their phones and their image nowadays. I predict that issue only got worse as time went on. I wonder if I saw a world war in my lifetime. I hope not. I hope we are a more peaceful world when I hit 100.

I suppose I should tell my future self about who I am right now so that I can compare how I've changed. Right now I am 18 years old. I will be turning 19 in two months. I already feel like life is going by really fast so I must be feeling like life is nothing but a speedy blur at the age of 100. 18 is a cool age to be because most days I feel anything is possible. Nothing in my life is really fully set in stone yet and there are so many things awaiting me. Soon I will transfer to a four year university. I can't wait to do that! I can't wait to meet all the people that will become my friends. I can't wait to learn all the things that will make my mind whirl. Right now my top two schools are UCSB and UCLA. I would be happy at either. My best friend in the whole universe is Camille Coss. I just don't think she will ever not be in my life. I mean that. I can't imagine a me without a her. I wouldn't be surprised if she was sitting next to me right now as I read this letter in the future. I hope memories are hitting us both right now and that we laugh a lot. I hope we never told anyone about the Mexican food, I hope it's still our secret. My other close friends are Monica Deyski, George Holmes, Priyanka Dave, Lauren Cloughesy, Eliza Richard, Sarah Koep, Bek Kamolov, Colin Buchanan, Jerry Zhang, Logan Werner, Payton Chilano, and Amanda Mertzel. I read and write all the time, no surprise. My favorite color is yellow. I have an orange affliction. I journal daily and I love going to the beach. Drake and Teddy are the family dogs. La La Land and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty are my favorite movies. The Great Gatsby is my favorite book. Space Oddity by David Bowie is my favorite song. The best days of my life we're going to the swing with Ethan, Olivia, and Priyanka, Ashley Stephen's last day of school party junior year, the day of Katherine, and the beach day in Oxnard when Sarah, Lily, Emily, Bek, Jerry, and I met the miniature horse named Tar Tar Martinez. I am smiling thinking that even better days have come since those ones. I am probably laughing thinking that I thought those were so great in comparison to what is to come.

I hope I had a family of my own and that there is a lot of love in that family. I hope that my sister and I call each other every day. I hope that I travelled the world. I hope I took a lot of risks and I hope that I made the best out of everything I had. I hope that my relationship with my parents stayed strong throughout our lives. I hope that I opened my mind to new ideas.

I would imagine the world is a much different place now. I hope it is a better place. Maybe that is too optimistic but I think hope is a daring and wonderful thing. I want to contribute to making it a better place for all those who will come after me.

Oh and before I forget! Happy 100th Birthday, my future self! Who knows maybe 100 is considered young in the future! Maybe they have found a way to make the lifespan a lot longer. Either way I hope today is filled with love and joy. Braid your hair and give Camille a hug. You better have at least two dogs.

Love always,


Saturday, April 22, 2017

Word Count Saturday

Fun fact: I am writing this at a little league baseball game

What am I working on?

Revising chapter 2!

How do I like the process?

It's going pretty well so far. I've had a few friends and family members read it and I am currently working with their feedback.

What am I reading?

Just finished Caraval! If you haven't read it, you definitely should. It's extremely imaginative and the plot will hold you at the edge of your seat the whole time.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Word Count Monday

What am I working on?

The letter to my 100 year old self!!

How do I like the process?

I love this concept! I do the majority of my personal journal entries in letter form so this is right up my alley. It's making me think very deeply about my future and while that is sometimes scary, it is also exciting to think about everything that is ahead of me. I think I'm actually going to save the letter when I'm done with it and hopefully I make it to 100 to read it. It will be interesting to see if my guesses about what my life may become will match up with my reality.

What am I reading?

Caraval by Stephanie something (I don't remember her last name!)

I like it a lot so far. My childhood best friends mom recommended it to me because Stephanie was her friends college roommate!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Yet Another Word Count Sunday

What have I been working on?

Journaling and a few short story ideas

How do I like the process?

I am good at coming up with bits and pieces of stories, but not so good at sticking to them for the long haul. Usually, I just end up with a bunch of different intros to stories but for me that is better than nothing. We will have to wait and see if any of these mini stories actually turn into anything.

What am I reading?

Forums about college life from all the schools that I am considering transferring to...

This is something that simultaneously stresses me out and excites me.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Word Count Sunday

What am I working on?

The next chapter for this class

How do I like the process?

I am enjoying it. The only tricky part is I am playing around with a few different intros to the chapter. I am going to set them all aside, write the whole thing, and see which one fits best at the end.

What am I reading?

The Adoration of Jenna Fox

Friday, March 17, 2017

experiment #2

The world is just like ours except all of the houses are completely see through.

The world is just like ours except education is not required for anyone but it is available.

The world is just like ours except college is free.

The world is just like ours except all personal technology (cell phones, lap tops, etc.) has become illegal.

The world is just like ours except everyone speaks their own language.

The world is just like ours except teenagehood lasts for a duration of fifty years.

The world is just like ours except your memory only has the capacity to remember one day before it.

The world is just like ours except the color red doesn't exist.

The world is just like ours except all swear words have been banned.

The world is just like ours except you have the ability to decide how long you wish to remain under 30.

The world is just like ours except giraffes have become regular house pets.

The world is just like ours except the you can choose one superpower at the age of 10.

The world is just like ours except orange juice is what we need to drink to stay alive, not water.

The world is just like ours except scantrons are taken with pen instead of pencil.

Word Count Friday (again)

What am I working on?

My critiques for my Glowdark friends and journaling.

How do I like the process?

Critiquing other people's work allows me to also find things I can improve upon in my own work. It ends up being beneficial for them and for me.

What am I reading?

a poetry book that has no cover so I can't really tell you what it is

Friday, March 10, 2017

Word Count Friday

What am I working on?

Journaling like a mad woman

How do I feel about the process?

I do not know what came over me but in this past week the amount I've been journaling has sky rocketed. I just keep getting hit with inspiration and I can't seem to write enough. This is a "problem" that I am more than thrilled to have. I've been journaling like two to three times a day. I am just gonna take this sudden crazy inspiration and run with it...or should I say write with it (I'm hilarious).

What am I reading?

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (it's my second time through and I already want to cry)

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Word Count Saturday

What am I working on?

Mostly journaling and revising my chapter for this class after receiving feedback.

How do I feel about the process?

Journaling is as always a great way for me to express myself. I have recently gotten back into making it a part of my daily routine instead of every few days. I am thrilled about this and am producing work I actually like. Revising is a slow but rewarding process.

What am I reading?

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

I love this book!!!! I saw the movie when it first came out but the book is even more phenomenal ( as is usually the case).

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Word Count Thursday

What am I working on?

I am working on editing my first chapter currently and journaling as per usual.

How do I like the process?

Getting to finally share my work in class yesterday was such a wonderful experience for me. It really pushed me out of my comfort zone and it was nice to get feedback. I am looking forward to editing it and making it even better.

What am I reading?

This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald

chapter 1

Marissa Adamski
Chapter 1

The last thing Celeste said to me was that she wanted to die. In the year we spent apart, she just as well may have. In the year that came after, I just as well may have too. I guess you could say Celeste enabled me. I mean to an extent she did. She was the one who would catch me crying before tears even had the time to stroll down my face and would suggest as if it were the most normal thing in the world, “Do we need to do a round of church and Katie?” Before you start guessing, no those aren’t teenage slang nicknames for drugs or maybe they are. It all depends on what the word “drug” means to you. It’s that way with everything; everybody’s interpretation is different. Katie means more to me than most people do and that’s all I’ll say of her for now. As far as Church goes; which I will tell you now is very far anexceptionally twisted; Celeste was an atheist and I attended our local Catholic church every Sunday with my family. I suppose what we were doing was essentially praying, if you really stretch that term, but again it all comes down to what your definition of “praying” is. I guarantee you though if we said that hopeless prayer of ours aloud in any church of any kind, we would have been kicked out real quick and probably had our mouths doused in holy water.
Celeste and I didn’t stop talking for any one reason. To be honest, today if you were to ask either one of us why we fell silent on each other during those lost months, we’d both probably tell you it had more to do with some cosmic shift in the universe than anything else. That was Celesteand I for you though. We put our faith in the craziest things. There were three elderly men in tracksuits-one gray, one navy, one black- that would walk along the road of our high school every morning. In our freshman English class, we had learned that in literature, groups of three often represent some sort of superstition. I couldn’t tell you where those old men were headed or why they wore the same velour tracksuits every day, but at some point I made up my mind that seeing these three men on my way to school meant my day was bound to be okay. I told Celesteof this mid-sophomore year at the blooming point of our friendship and she immediately adapted it into one of her own sacred beliefs. I remember when we initially stopped talking we tried countless times to discuss what was occurring between the two of us but for some reason it never got solved. She was too sad or I was too busy. We were full of excuses and confusion. We just didn’t seem to have room in our lives for each other anymore and I was certain we had outgrown our friendship for good. I won’t lie to you. The entirety of my senior year of high school consisted of me living a life that didn’t involve her and she one that didn’t involve me. I never thought I would see her again. She could have died in that time we spent apart and I could have too. Yes, that’s morbid but it’s true. On that note, make sure you tell your mother you love her on the way out the door this morning.
You can only imagine my surprise months later when I got a phone call from an unknown number and heard Celeste’s voice on the other end of the line. Picture this, a teenage girl two days after her catastrophic break up is crying into a bowl of mediocre chicken tortilla soup at one of America’s worst restaurant chains and her nearly dead ex-best friend calls her to discuss said break up.  I was so shocked I had to ask her three times who I was speaking to before I understood. She said she had heard about the break up from a friend of mine and that she wanted to meet up. Oh and get this; her boyfriend of two years had broken up with her just two days after mine. The universe, or God, or Santa, or whatever you believe in had aligned in such a special way that I didn’t hesitate for a second. I agreed to meet with her as I sipped on a spoonful of over salted broth and cursed myself for hanging out with people who enjoy mediocrity (my friends chose the restaurant that day). It seemed the universe had cosmically shifted again and had opened our hearts to each other after all that time. It was the day I learned that coincidences are rarely accidents, but instead gifts the universe sends you as a reminder that life doesn’t always suck. It just most of the time sucks. 
The next day, I arrived at her house to find her sobbing in the trunk of her white Volkswagen bug. Amongst the slew of yoga gear, old reusable water bottles, and her miscellaneous treasures was the crumpled form of what was at one time known as the very sturdy Celeste Devita. In the three years we had been best friends before our leave of absence, I had seen her cry but never like this. She wasn’t someone who was afraid to emote. She was not the girl whom you would see running to escape to a private bathroom stall in a frazzled blur because she didn’t want anyone to know she had been crying. I mean a lot of people are like that, but not Celeste. If Celeste was going to cry, the world around her was going to be aware of it and she wasn’t ashamed. I admired that about her, I think it’s a huge part of what allowed me to come to understand her at such a close focus. We did not speak, instead I approached her with open arms, climbed inside the cocoon she had created in her trunk, and as a reusable water bottle stabbed into the back of my thigh I hugged her in an attempt to scoop up all the fallen pieces. 
She lived in a community of mostly retired folks. It was commonplace to find a woman in an embroidered sweater walking a small dog down her street at all times. The neighbors passing by were just an audience to the two crying girls amongst all those trunk treasures. They must have imagined the wildest things. I know I would have but maybe that’s just how my mind works. Perhaps they imagined Celeste’s cat had just passed away, or that her Aunt had gone nuts and fed all of the fish in her fish tank to the birds, or that she had just received the news of her parents divorce. As they were just background noise in the main play of our lives, so were we to them. I didn’t know what was happening behind their closed doors either. Maybe a woman in an embroidered sweater was becoming a widow or maybe a group of elderly men and women were getting wasted at 11 a.m. watching old “I Love Lucy” reruns. It’s not fair to ever assume that we certainly know the truth. If they like to party then that’s none of my business, but I sure would like it to be. 
I just hugged her for what felt like ages, but probably only lasted about fifteen minutes. As my shoulder became increasingly damper with her woes, I thought of my grandmother. My Nana told the most phenomenal stories. Whether they were all true, only somewhat true, or complete bullshit didn’t really matter. She could always grab the attention of the room with one of her stories and that’s not something just anyone can do. At the age of 7 she told me of how she and her best friend, Loretta, used to go tanning at the cemetery. They worked some office job as underpaid secretaries in their twenties. Next to the building was a huge grassy cemetery. When their lunch hour would come, my Nana and Loretta would walk down to the graveyard and find a nice spot to roll out their beach towels. They would tan and create stories for the people whose graves they were laying next to. Loretta and my Nana stayed friends all of their lives, up until Loretta passed away early last year. Nana still goes and rolls out the towel to visit with Loretta every once in a while. She promised me I would have a friend as wonderful as Loretta some day anI knew as I was hugging Celeste that she was my Loretta. 
There are some friendships that you return to after a leave of absence and find that you just don’t fit together anymore. There are uncomfortable pauses in conversation, forced small talk, and it feels like work. People shouldn’t feel like work and if they do you should pack up your bags, say your goodbyes, and be on your way. It’s for the best. Then there are other friendships that you return to after a leave of absence and realize that time must have been a figment of your imagination. You reconnect instantly and you swear not a minute has passed since you last spoke. It’s natural and uplifting. I know I don’t have to tell you which type of friend Celeste is. If I do, stop reading this now, you won’t understand the rest. 
“Can we go for a drive?” she asked in a way that told me she was already certain I would say yes. 
I didn’t answer her; well not out loud that is. I handed her the keys and we closed the trunk with all of its’ treasures. We had a lot of explaining to do and I was hopeful that along the way we’d find three old men in velour tracksuits. Together, we hopped into the front of her car and both of us knew that somehow the world wasn’t going to end. 
“I don’t even know where to begin, what’s the last thing you remember talking about with me?” I fiddled with the radio as she pulled out of her neighborhood. We didn’t have a destination yet, but at the time neither of us cared. 
One, two, three-I counted three embroidered sweaters on the backs of elderly women as we drove away and named them in my head. Gayle, Gladys, and Gertrude. They would have to do for now, as far as superstition in the name of the number three goes. 
“Dying,” she laughed but only because she must have felt it sounded kind of wacky. I must admit it did. “But, I don’t want to talk about that now. That’s for later. I don’t really want to talk about me at all it gives me a headache. You know how it is. I just want to know what happened to you. I’ve heard the craziest things and I want to hear it all from your mouth before I believe a word anyone else says.”
I had learned by this point in our friendship that when Celeste said she didn’t want to talk about something, I shouldn’t push it. She was far more comfortable listening than she was speaking. I knew in time I would hear all about the highs and lows of the past year of her life, but for now I would wait. 
When I thought about where to begin, I became filled with the exhausting feeling that there was too much to say and absolutely no way to tell it all the way it really happened. It seemed a lifetime had passed in that year. I had shed my skin and I wondered if Celeste would recognize me at all at the end of the day. My brain replayed for me a film of moments I despised and survived upon. These moments were simultaneously life giving and a mental suicide mission. Everything was tinged in a different shade of orange; but just the same they were all in the orange spectrum. Some were much darker than others and some floated lightly behind my eyes and out onto the tips of my eyelashes. If an eyelash were to politely fall upon my cheek, I would relentlessly wish to return to an orange day of my choice. My wish hadn’t come true yet but I continued to wish just the same. I reluctantly accepted the fact that despite my best efforts my version of this story was tainted. It was like a coffee stain on a paperback book. I wanted to tell it completely truthfully, but my first lie would be to tell you that telling my own story fully honestly is possible. Bias and an admittedly tainted viewpoint is the first step in telling any personal story. This is my truth, but it’s not his truth, nor his mother’s, nor his father’s, nor my mother’s, nor my father’s. Truth is entirely subjective. I have to tell you that, because no one else ever will. 
As these thoughts were racing around my skull, we passed by our high school and then it hit me. I knew exactly how and more importantly who to start with. “Pull over, Celeste,” I half yelled at her. She didn’t question it, not for a second. She did not think, only reacted to my words. As she pulled into a parking spot with a view of the school band room, my belief that she was my Loretta was reaffirmed and I believe the planets must have been high fiving up there in cosmic happiness. 
“Hello school,” she said absentmindedly. She said hello to a lot of inanimate objects- retro cars, meaningful buildings, fresh flowers, dying flowers- just in case any of them did actually have the power to listen. If you think about it, that’s a pretty considerate thing to do. “Now, what are we doing here?” Celeste pressed lightly into my whir of thoughts.
“Did you ever meet Sally Johnson before you left school?” I asked.
“Once or twice, I didn’t know her too well, but she seemed nice,” Celeste shrugged her shoulders. 
“I brought you here because Sally caused this whole thing to happen and this is obviously where we first met. I know this may sound weird but I felt like if I took you to the place it all started, it would help you understand this all better and maybe it will help me tell the story best.”
“Sienna, I want to hear it all, every last word. We can sit here all day and all night if you need. Now let’s hear about this Sally girl.” Loretta had definitely been reincarnated into Celeste’s soul, I made note to call my Nana later and tell her of this.
The words tumbled out of my mouth quickly and for some reason I felt nervous. I never quite knew how people would react to it. Within moments it was like I could no longer hear the sound of my own voice or the gritty buzz of the car air conditioner. In my mind I was consumed by my own memory. 

Friday, February 17, 2017

Experiment #1: Map Making

If this doesn't make sense yet, I apologize. This is just to help me plan out the world I am planning on creating for the chapter I will share in class. Hopefully, it will make more sense once I actually read you guys the chapter!

Side note: In each chapter, they are going to a new place and only remain there for the duration of that chapter.

-Orange Grove: This will be where the story starts off. The color should reflect the mood of the scenes that take place here. Additionally, this is where we first are introduced to our protagonist as well as another crucial character. This is a central location in relation to the rest of the locations.
-Katie's House: This will become a sort of safe haven for our protagonist, especially when things start to go bad (I know this is vague but I am typically a pantser, so this is the most planning I've done in a long time for any writing project). Also, this character and her home are symbolic of purity and truth.
-The Estate: we meet "the hostess." She hosts all the big parties for the people in this world. All of our main characters are friends of hers, but this doesn't mean they all like her. The first night of summer scene takes place here. This is a few streets away from Katie's house.
-The Tennis Courts: Lola's tennis courts are kind of tucked away from the rest if the locations. The scene that takes place here is set in the evening. Elliot spends the majority of his time here as well. Elliot and Lola are close friends, but nothing more. They play tennis all day long.
-The Movie Set: This is where we meet Richard. Everything is very "Hollywood" in a verging on obnoxious way. He's the type of character that will either make you laugh or you are going to want to slap him or both.
-Cassandra's car: Cassandra takes the two main characters on a ride in her car. She is a bit of a wild driver and distracted very easily. Haven't quite decided where she is going to take them yet. Her car will be as wacky as she is.
-The Mountain: we meet our final character on top of this mountain. It has a beautiful view but is very difficult to climb up. It takes a lot of skill and perseverance. He does not want to show the two main characters his face.
-Hayden's church: This will be the final scene and big reveal. Things get very dark here.

This is by no means the final map. I definitely will change things around as I go. This is just my starting point.

Word Count Friday? (Sorry I missed you Wednesday)

What am I working on?

Well ladies and gents, I was driving home from work this week and in a sudden moment of inspiration I decided I am going to entirely change my chapter around. In fact, I was so inspired that I decided I am going to rewrite the entire thing and make it almost completely different. This should be interesting. I am really hoping that I am able to take the images in my head and turn them into something readable on the page. Wish me luck!

How do I feel about the process?

This is one of those projects that is either going to come out totally awesome and be just like I saw it in my head or not at all. Fingers crossed that it's the former rather than the latter.

What am I currently reading?

My grandfather gave me an 800 page biography on Alexander Hamilton. He really wants to hear my opinion on it but it is very very dense and hard to get through. I'M TRYING!

Planning to head off to the bookstore today to find something that I can read when my brain isn't melting trying to understand that biography. Any book suggestions? I'm open to pretty much anything.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Word Count Wednesday (Finally on time! Yay!)

What am I working on?

I am currently seven pages deep in my first chapter! I am fairly certain this is a project I
will continue working on even after this class is over. Additionally, I just added "bread" to the grocery list on the fridge whiteboard at home (that counts as writing, right?).

How do I like the process?

Ladies and gentleman, I have finally broken the worst writer's block of my lifetime thus far. To celebrate, I bought myself a big pineapple coconut smoothie at lunch today and repeatedly told my friend (Hi Kayleigh) that it tasted like a tropical dream. Strongly recommend the Aloha Bra smoothie from natural cafe if you wanna feel like an island prince/princess. I am really enjoying writing my first chapter. I think I am on the path of finally proving to myself that I am capable of having an idea for a novel length work and sticking with it the whole way. One of the hardest things for me right now is coming up with names for all of my characters. I want the names to fit them perfectly and it's hard to find ones that fit just right.

What am I reading?

Still working through Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

As well as, fourth grader's essays on their thoughts on the Super Bowl (My mom is an elementary school teacher. Grading papers has become like a second unpaid job for me.)

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Word Count Wednesday

What I'm Working On

I am starting to work on my first chapter rough draft for next week. Also, I am constantly journaling and writing lots of to-do lists because that's the only way I can operate when life gets chaotic.

How Do I Like the Process?

I am enjoying it but I'm also slightly terrified of it. The idea of other people reading my work is a bit nerve wracking to me but I am also looking forward to hearing what my peers think of my work. I usually only share my writing occasionally with my mother and best friend because it is so personal to me. This will allow me to step out of my comfort zone and I think it will be an important step for me as a developing writer.

What Am I Reading?

Brace New World by Aldous Huxley (I'm about half way through, just in case any of you were wondering)

Friday, January 27, 2017

Word Count Wednesday

What I'm Working on?

Currently, I am just journaling and attempting to figure out what I want to do for a short story. I don't like planning when I write my stories because I find that it limits me, personally. I try to look for inspiration for a story everywhere I go and I always have my eyes open for something that will strike me. I suppose you could say that yes, currently I am on the hunt for some inspiration to punch me in the face.

How I Feel About the Process?

I really enjoy journaling because it allows me to sort through my thoughts and express myself. I write down everything and anything I am feeling or thinking. However, in terms of writing an actual story I am experiencing a bit of writer's block so I have stepped away from that at the moment, because it was too frustrating. I wish there was like a magical smoothie I could drink to cure my writer's block because 1) I love smoothies and 2) I hate writer's block.

What Am I Reading?

The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

(I highly recommend if you like the 1920's! It's told from the perspective of Ernest Hemingway's wife and it's phenomenal so far!)