ann_r_starr: (body count)
S be patent with the typos I am undoubtedly going to make. I'll try and keep them to a minimum, but I can't make any promises. Figured it was time to make a post here since this IS my writing blog, which suggests I should actually write in it.

I did some serious work on the rewrites of Storm's Honour today and plan to divote at least half an hour to the novel every day. Even with uni to get in the way, I think I can manage that much. Up to chapter 3 in the rewrites, thank you Skitz. Your reading and commenting is seriously helpful. Working on toning down the 'Amaro, Amaro, Amaro,' a lot. And fixing the paragraph thingy too.

Once I'm done with all Skitz's revision, I'll probably start work on including some more scenes and rewriting the awful ending into something better. Then I'll toss it to sis to play with, since I lack her ability to write honestly funny Talon and Amaro dialog. After that I'll do some more work on Water's Fate. Lots of work ahead.

*makes a note to stock up on coffee*

ann_r_starr: (Default)
“Heroes know that things must happen when it is time for them to happen. A quest may not simply be abandoned; unicorns may go unrescued for a long time, but not forever; a happy ending cannot come in the middle of the story.” ~ Peter S. Beagle

I like this quote, probably because it's true for writing fantasy. Not that Amaro and Talon rescue any unicorns (Stop giving me puppy eyes Talon), but because it's not possible for events in the story to go completely unreasolved. Amaro can't go the entire novel without telling Talon the truth about his past, for example, or without eventually facing that past and dealing with it.

It's also true for me as a writer. Storm's Honour, Water's Fate and Thief's Choice are my quests. I can't simply abandon them when they get hard to complete. Perhaps it's because, like Amaro, I've got too much at stake to simply walk away from them. Or perhaps it's because my unicorns, the characters in my novel, need to be rescued from the situations they're in, and that can only happen when the stories are finished. They want the 'happy' ending owed to them and they won't let me abandon them mid quest.

And just like a quest, thinking like this is easier when it's been a good writing day, when the roads before me are flat and easy to travel. The challenge is keeping this in mind when the road turns into a mountain. But I try.

ann_r_starr: (Voices in my head)
I haven't posted in months, I know. I'm bad about posting.

And uni is a slow, but fasinating death, I swear. The train ride gives me at least one, and up to three solid hours of writing time, which is good. Storm's Honour edits are happening slowly, but surely. Which is also a slow, exhusting process that I swear drains the life out of me.

I've done a tiny bit of writing on Water's Fate, but not a huge amount. No real energy to spare at the moment, not until I readjust to university life.

I also locked myself out of my flat today. I haven't done that in three years, so take it as proof of my being utterly braindead.

Short post, not much in it I know. But see above comment on braindead-ness. Nothing left to spare, even for a blog post.
ann_r_starr: (writer)

She watched the pyre burning to its last ashes, taking with it two parts of her soul, and struggled with the guilt and the relief burning in her heart. Her expression was twisted into a suitably pained appearance as she both tried to smile and fought not to do so.

A hand touched her shoulder, feather light, and she turned to face two dark brown eyes, bright with understanding. Without a word, they walked away from the pyre, away from the clan, into a patch of silent desert. She rested her head against his when they sat, her blond hair mixing with his black as had happened thirty years earlier. “I'm relieved,” she whispered. “They're dead, and I'm relieved. What kind of monster does that make me?”

You're not a monster,” he replied softly. “It's only natural to feel so. The Secret doesn't matter anymore. They can't be hurt if it comes out. You're not glad they're dead, you're relieved that they're safe and beyond pain. They can never remember what happened now. It's normal that you should feel glad that it's finally over, after three decades of being afraid for them.”

I was afraid,” she admitted. “When neither of them were able to walk into a temple, when he'd pause by the lake with that look, when she'd wake up screaming with those nightmares... Hell, when Thelon started poking around...” She shook her head. “I was so sure... So very sure that soon it would all come out... That they'd remember what happened... what they had to do... And...”

It didn't happen,” he told her firmly, wrapping around her. “We didn't let it. Tres and Zap can't be hurt by the past, Artica, and we can finally move on.” He tilted her face upwards and kissed the tip of her nose. “You might even be more willing to smile again.”

Artica laughed. “I smile, Flash. But maybe it'll be a little easier now.” She turned her head towards Maelstorm, frowning thoughtfully. “I'll have to decide what to do with the farm now. And... They'd have wanted to be laid to rest on the winds of Tres' precious desert... But there should be a marker in Sparkstike for them, don't you think? Just as... a reminder. Only, what should it say?”

There is no greater loyalty then the bond between twins, those abandoned or both,” Flash replied at once, smiling sadly. “As you said, it should be a reminder. And... We'll place it together, Artica. A reminder in exchange for the memory we kept hidden.”

It's fitting,” Artica agreed quietly, closing her eyes as Flash wrapped an arm around her. While the light faded around them, the two friends would have sworn the evening breeze carried with it the sound of two laughing ghostly children...

Rewriting

Oct. 13th, 2010 01:11 am
ann_r_starr: (coffee)
Well, while sis is taking her turn with Water's Fate, I'm back at work on Storm's Honour - trying to transform it from a very rough first draft to a somewhat more polished second draft.

This is an interesting experience, I'm finding. I've never gotten to the rewrite stage before this and it's not at all like writing the first draft was. The first draft, over all, was a great deal easier. Maybe because I'm not a particularly good editor, but the rewriting is feeling like extremely hard work. It's worth while effort, though, but it's taken some adjustment.

For one thing, I've taken to going out to a coffee shop an hour away from home. I find that that makes it easier to keep my butt in the chair and work, since I have no net to distract me and have to justify the trip to myself by getting writing done. Which usually means I have a damn good coffee and a light lunch, then get two to three hours of work done.

Boredom is a great motivator, I've found this week.  Editing progress bar will be on the bottom of every post from now on.


Storm's Honour - Editing Progress
ann_r_starr: (not enough sleep)


I was trying to get to 10,000 words tonight before I handed this over to Andrea, but frankly I'm getting tired of beating my head against writer's block. Time to let my sister's fresh eyes take a look and come up with something.

That's one of the joys of co-authoring, I swear. Unlike Storm's Honour, where I was on my own when I hit a block, I can throw Water's Fate in sis' lap without any guilt at all. This appeals greatly to my natural sense of laziness.

Besides, unlike me, sis doesn't seem to require that inconvenient thing called sleep.

ann_r_starr: (Default)


Well, progress is being made, though Acqua isn't thrilled with some of my character tweaking. *pats her* Sorry, but it needed to be done. You'll get over it eventually, I'm sure.

ann_r_starr: (easy going)
Here are my thoughts on fanfic.

Since you guys all know me, it would be pretty pointless of me to say I fully support fanfiction. So bare with me while I be utterly pointless.

I support fan fiction.

What is less pointless is why I support fanfiction and the people who write it. So, my friends, let me take you down memory lane.

To start with, I strongly object to a 'no child left behind' policy in schools. Simply because if my many, many schools hadn't simply shuffled me forward when I was young, someone might have caught on to my rather large issue rather then berating me for it.

I have always loved to read and to tell stories. But I learnt to read by memorising whole words, in the young adult level books, skipping completely that stage of learning to read by sounding out words. That lead to my being a fantastic reader with a huge vocaburary... that I had little to no idea how to spell.

Here's a fact. The phrase "Sound out the word" has very, very little meaning to a child who isn't even aware letters make sounds on their own.

Here's another fact. A child who can't spell anything with more then four letters but who loves to write stories gets very little support and a great deal of mockery. So it wasn't school that taught me to overcome my spelling issues. Nor was it my parents, who didn't realise the cause of my problems until I was fifteen or so.

The people who helped me get past my issues with spelling and grammar were the supportive and friendly fans of my Pokemon fanfiction - and in particular the friends I made through those fanfiction works. I'm still not the greatest speller in the world, but the support of my fans and friends lent me the strength I needed to follow my dream and over come my shortcomings.

Without my start in fanfiction, my dream of writing an original novel would have been lost. And I know I'm not the only person like myself in the world, so, that is why I support fanfiction. Because somewhere out there is another child who needs a safe space to learn to walk before they can chase their dreams.

Do I consider fanfiction to be uncreative or a mockery of the original author?

Not at all.

I can understand why some authors are touchy about fanfiction, but I think dismissing it as uncreative or a mockery is out of line on the parts of published authors. Firstly because very few people write fanfiction out of hatred for the original work. That would be an amazing waste of time - which is why, even if Katherine Kerr were to allow fanfiction, you wouldn't find me writing it.

Secondly, and I admit to bias here, I don't consider fanfiction to lack creativity. When I wrote Pokemon fanfic, Ash, Brock and Misty were rarely seen in my writing. My interest was in the Pokemon themselves, in particular Mew, Mewtwo and what might have been involved in that cloning process to make Mewtwo so different from Mew.

My fanfics were certainly ill thought out, badly ploted and full of Mary Sues, but they also were nothing like the original games or cartoons. Nor were most of the other fanfics I read over the years. Most fanfiction writers take the original setting and add a 'what if' to it.

That, in my opinion, is creativity. After all, isn't the truth of so called 'original fiction' that we authors simply take reality and add a 'what if' to it?

ann_r_starr: (Default)

Prompt 5 – Outsides

Here we go again.

The thought wasn't particularly kind, but it was true. The shouting, the smoke lingering on the air, the smells of burn and wet, the angry looks, his parents trying to field the complaints off with promises of repair or payment... And his sister standing in the middle of it all, head bowed, fists clenched and her face wet with tears of mixed fury and despair as people pointed accusingly at her and hurled insults.

“Out of control!”

“Dangerous!”

“She'll kill someone one day, mark my words!”

“Lock her up!”

No she isn't! He wanted to scream at them. It was an accident! She never means it! If you people would just stop treating her like this then she wouldn't get so angry! He didn't open his mouth though. It never helped to yell at the masses when this happened. All trying to defend his sister did was make people suggest that there was either something wrong with them – who had ever heard of triplets being born with completely different signs after all? Must be a sign that something had gone wrong – or that their parents were incapable of raising any of their children. He didn't want to start those rumours again. The temple and the guard had already made noises that hinted they were seriously considering taking the children.

He knew what would happen if they did. They'd separate all four of them. Make sure none of them ever saw each other again. Or at least, make sure he and Tres never saw Artica and baby Tavia again. They'd probably send him as a servant to one of the temples in Maelstrom proper, with orders to train him to 'good' behaviour. And Tres... Who knew what they'd do to Tres? Lock her up, perhaps. Throw her into Naurorod and leave her to die there?

Zap was only six, but he wasn't stupid. Tres might be a Fire, but she'd never survive alone in Naurorod. She was too little. They both were, but if someone tried to take her, he'd fight them. Or at least make them take him too and they'd stay together.

“Why does she always do this?” Zap looked over at the speaker, saw Artica holding Tavia carefully and looking at Tres with annoyance. “It's not fair. She does that stuff and no one wants us around any more.”

“It's not Tres' fault,” Zap protested quietly to his sister, finally able to voice his feelings. “She's trying real hard to control it, you know she is.”

“I know,” Artica sighed, some of the annoyance fading. “But she should try harder.”

“I think she's trying as hard as she can,” Zap replied, looking back at his red-haired sister. He wished she was the blonde haired girl triplet or that he had red hair. Then she could cut it or he could grow his and he could claim it was his fault – that he'd knocked a candle over or something. And he'd look more like Tres then Artica.

He and Tres should have just been twins. Artica could have been older, she'd have liked that. She always wanted to be grown up and act like one. She hadn't been fun in ages, not since they were old enough to take lessons at the temple and she'd started to play with other kids.

“I'm telling you, Tanson, if you don't control that girl of yours, the village will deal with her.” The captain of the guard glared at Tres with unconcealed disgust as he spoke to their father.

Dragar, I'm sorry, but Tres is only a child. And there's no one really who can teach her properly. She is trying but-”

“Then send the girl to Naurorod!” snapped Dragar. “Or Ilyamen! Sell her to the clears if you want, but that girl does not set one foot off your farm from now on unless it's to leave Sparkstrike. If you insist on putting your own home and children in danger, so be it, but the entire village does not need to suffer for your foolishness. Mark my words, Tanson, if that girl is the cause of one more fire in this village, I will remove her myself!”

“NO!” Zap couldn't stand it any more. He pushed past people and ran out to stand in front of Tres, his arms spread out to protect her. “You leave Tres alone! You can't take her away! I won't let you.”

“Boy, be silent,” Dragar snapped. “I can do whatever I need to protect this village. Tanson, control your offspring or lose them. I won't tolerate any more incidents like this.”

“Zappary, Tres...” Their father sounded and looked tired. “Go home now, both of you. And straight up to bed.”

It wasn't fair, Zap thought as he took his sister's hand and led her away from the crowd. It wasn't like he'd done anything wrong or Tres had meant to burn the temple's stupid paintings and ugly rug. They shouldn't have been shouting at her for trying to light the torch that had gone out. They'd frightened her. “It's all right Tressie,” he whispered as they walked. “I know it was just an accident. I won't let them ever keep us apart. Even if they try and take you away, I'll make them stop. Or take me too. We'll never, ever, be apart, I promise.”

“Really promise?” Tres asked, looking up from her feet for the first time.

Zap pulled off his shirt and tried to dry her tear stained face. “I really promise,” he replied. “I'll never, ever, let anyone make you cry again, Tres. Never ever.”

ann_r_starr: (Default)

Prompt 4 – Insides


Bas skipped down the last few steps into the guild, smiling brightly as several people called out a welcome to her. She loved the thieves guild. Loved the people and loved the place. Most of all she loved being a part of the guild.

Soon she'd old enough to start learning the art of picking pockets. Bas couldn't wait, but until she turned ten she was just as happy to run around with the other guild children. They had a freedom that she'd noticed other children didn't have, and they got to help keep the most important secret in all of Naruta. They were special. And she was one of them.

Behind her she heard another set of footsteps and stepped aside to wait for her twin to run down after her. Grinning she took Pas' hand and the twins ran into the nursery. Instantly they were swarmed by the other guild children who were already there, all eager to talk to them. Bas loved it, loved being the center of attention. Here she was the center of attention, the queen of her own little world. Here she wasn't just the little orphan girl, she wasn't a noble child or a poor one. She was just Bas Sanderson, one of the guild. And one day she would be an even greater thief then either of her mothers. But for now, she was happy to just belong.

“Pas and me saw the baker's got some berry pies in the window,” she announced, grinning at the cheers of the group. “Who wants to go get them?”

As she ran out of the guild with her brother and half a dozen other guild children, Bas ignored the grins and amused looks of the guild adults. Telling the adults that none of them were babies and they were on a serious mission could wait. There were more important things to deal with. Like stealing berry pies and making sure she and Pas got the biggest pieces.

ann_r_starr: (Default)

100 Stories, 100 Days

Prompt 3 – Ends

Acqua sighed softly as she rested her head on her brother's shoulder, watching the stars fading out one by one and the bright blue line on the horizon growing thicker. Amaro had long since fallen asleep, but Acqua was in no rush to wake him. They'd spent a long night out here, just talking about things that they'd needed to talk about and which Acqua's trip to Morilanta had brought to the surface.

It hadn't been an easy or pleasant talk, for all it was productive and long needed. Endings were after all often difficult and uncomfortable. Indeed, as much as Acqua had longed for her older brothers to stop treating her as the 12-year-old she'd long since outgrown, there was something unsettling about the knowledge that the last ties of childhood were now gone.

Still, nothing ended without something new beginning. Maybe now she would be free to be herself around her family, without feeling she had to act like the silly, somewhat innocent child they'd still seen her as. Acqua was, she hoped, at last free to be the young woman that guild life and the streets of Ilyamen had moulded her into. It would be a pleasant change not to have to pretend, no matter the cost.

One of the first things that would end as a result of this freedom was that she fully intended to stop holding back in spars with Talon. She was at least as accomplished with her daggers as Talon was and it was past time the student proved she had at least equalled her teachers in that area. Maybe then her family would stop worrying about her.

Acqua hoped so. It would make her and Mat's future plans a little easier. Shifting closer to Amaro for warmth, Acqua watched the sun rise slowly and bath the siblings in the light of a new future. She knew that, whatever it held, they were both ready for it.

Because no matter what endings or beginnings they faced, the bond between them was unbreakable.

ann_r_starr: (Default)

Prompt 002 – Middles

Being stuck in the middle could really suck, Pas thought with a sigh. Arguments between his brothers and sisters didn't happen often, but when they did they always seemed to drag him into it. Like now, with Bas and Aries alternating between glaring at each other over a torn, muddy and altogether ruined book and demanding Pas support one or the other of them.

It hadn't been entirely anyone's fault. Aries really shouldn't have left his book on the floor, but Bas should have both watched where she was standing and wiped her feet before coming upstairs. “It's no one's fault,” he told his siblings. “Aries, you know this room's too crowded to leave stuff lying around. Bas, you should have been more careful. So you both did it.”

“I guess,” Bas muttered, then sighed. “Sorry Aries...”

“It was my fault too,” Aries admitted. “It's okay.” As his siblings made up – with a hug that looked more like wrestling or perhaps an attempt to strangle each other – Pas headed downstairs to get a bucket of water and some rags so he could clean up Bas' trail of muddy footprints before their parents got home.

He was halfway through the trail in the kitchen when someone tapped his shoulder. Looking up, he saw Robin and Letha watching him. “We help?” Letha asked solemnly. Pas frowned slightly as he thought about that offer. The little twins liked to be involved in most of what the older three did, but there was always an equal chance that their helping would make things worse then before. Like the time they'd tried helping to water the garden and drowned the seedlings.

“It's pretty boring,” Pas warned them. “How about you two go up to your room and pick who you want to sleep with tonight? I'll finish up here then bring you both a cookie and some milk. It's past your bedtime anyway.”

“Aww,” the little twins chorused, but they made their way upstairs without a fuss. Much to Pas' relief. He agreed with his mother's regular mutterings that Letha had to have a Wind sign hidden somewhere. It was the only explanation for how she could scream nearly loud enough to shatter glass.

Finishing up washing the floor and the stairs quickly, Pas dragged the water bucket out to the back of the house and tipped it out. Faint laughter drifted to him on the breeze and his ears pricked up for a second before he hurried back inside. Hastily he filled Robin and Letha's little tin cups with the last of the day's milk and pulled two ginger cookies out of the tin before hurrying upstairs. As he passed by his room, he warned, “Muma and Daddy are nearly home. Better get ready,” before continuing on to his younger siblings. The scraping of beds being pushed together soon followed him down the hall. “Come on you two,” he announced. “Eat quickly and I'll help you get ready. Muma and Daddy will be here soon.” As the little twins gulped down their snack, Pas hastily helped them change into their nightclothes. As soon as they'd finished, he brushed the crumbs off them and helped the giggling duo into their beds. “Shh,” he whispered, listening for the tell-tale squeak of the door opening. “Go to sleep,” Pas added, lighting the little candle on their dresser with a spark. As the twins squeezed their eyes shut tightly – still giggling – Pas fled back down the hall.

“Quick, they're at the gate,” Bas hissed, hurrying away from the bedroom window. Aries was already under the covers as Bas and Pas scrambled into their now giant bed. All three grinned at each other in the dark then closed their eyes as they heard footsteps on the stairs.

Taking hold of Bas' hand under the covers and lightly resting his foot against Aries, Pas smiled. Sometimes being in the middle could suck, but sometimes...

Sometimes it wasn't bad at all.

ann_r_starr: (Default)

Prompt 001 – Beginnings

Every beginning was an ending. Nothing new could start without first destroying what had come before. Nature at it's most basic was proof of that. Dawn was the beginning of day and the end of night. Love was the birth of both strength and weakness, but the death of the same for it destroyed anger.

Even Amaro's own life was proof for this theory. The beginning of his friendship with Kestrel had been the end of his ability to turn a blind eye to the evils of slavery. The beginning of Amaro's growth into a stronger man had led to the end of his brother's life. The beginning of his friendship with Talon and his first steps into the life of the mercenary had been the end of his comfort with nobility. The beginning of Alethia and Talon's life as a married couple had been the end of their travels.

He hadn't always been pleased with those beginnings and endings. Hell, he'd resisted at least half of them like his life depended on it. Yet none of them had scared, no, terrified him a fraction as much as what lay before him now.

His little sister, the little girl who'd healed the wounds of Thom's death and his own abandonment of Vortai, was curled up in her bed, with Aria in her arms. Both of them were asleep, peaceful, content and looking like older and younger versions of each other. What terrified Amaro was that, seeing his toddler daughter and his sister in stark contrast together, he couldn't deny that Acqua wasn't a child any more. Somehow Acqua's adoption of Bas and Pas hadn't brought that home to him. Not in the way seeing her and Aria together did. And if his sister wasn't a child, would she need him to protect her? What would it do to their relationship if she didn't?

Moving nearly silently, Amaro picked up the vaguely dirty white teddy bear from where it had been left on the dresser and set it gently between the two girls. Neither woke, but both girls shifted slightly. Aria wrapped her tiny, chubby arms around the soft fur even as Acqua turned her head away from the ear that was tickling her nose, rejecting the once ever present piece of fluff.

Amaro pulled a second blanket over the girls, guarding them against the cold and silently left the room, and the house. Looking up at the stars as though they could carry his words to their mistress herself, he whispered something that was half a challenge, half a prayer. “Not this time, Etaf. They're both my little girls and they will always be my little girls.”

The beginning of fatherhood would not be the end of anything. Especially not being Acqua's big brother. He needed both roles to much to surrender either.

ann_r_starr: (Default)
Last time I failed, but I'm hoping this time I can complete the challenge. And to make it tougher, I'm going to make the rule for myself that I have to have written something for every prompt in 100 days.

Wish me luck.
001.Beginnings.002.Middles.003.Ends.004.Insides.005.Outsides.
006.Hours.007.Days.008.Weeks.009.Months.010.Years.
011.Red.012.Orange.013.Yellow.014.Green.015.Blue.
016.Purple.017.Brown.018.Black.019.White.020.Colourless.
021.Friends.022.Enemies.023.Lovers.024.Family.025.Strangers.
026.Teammates.027.Parents.028.Children.029.Birth.030.Death.
031.Sunrise.032.Sunset.033.Too Much.034.Not Enough.035.Sixth Sense.
036.Smell.037.Sound.038.Touch.039.Taste.040.Sight.
041.Shapes.042.Triangle.043.Square.044.Circle.045.Moon.
046.Star.047.Heart.048.Diamond.049.Club.050.Spade.
051.Water.052.Fire.053.Earth.054.Air.055.Spirit.
056.Breakfast.057.Lunch.058.Dinner.059.Food.060.Drink.
061.Winter.062.Spring.063.Summer.064.Fall.065.Passing.
066.Rain.067.Snow.068.Lightening.069.Thunder.070.Storm.
071.Broken.072.Fixed.073.Light.074.Dark.075.Shade.
076.Who?077.What?078.Where?079.When?080.Why?
081.How?082.If.083.And.084.He.085.She.
086.Choices.087.Life.088.School.089.Work.090.Home.
091.Birthday.092.Christmas.093.Thanksgiving.094.Independence.095.New Year.
096.Writer‘s Choice.097.Writer‘s Choice.098.Writer‘s Choice.099.Writer‘s Choice.100.Writer‘s Choice.
ann_r_starr: (Default)
Tonight I read this article by Jackie Kemp, discussing the idea of death in children's writing. She is unquestionly bothered by the thought that not all children's stories are full of happiness and sunshine, using examples of her 11 year old son and the 10 year old daughter of a friend - both of whom were brought to tears by books they were reading.

While I certainly question the wisdom of giving a book about the Holocaust to a ten year old, I disagree that children and YA fiction should not include death. By the age of 10, 11 or 12, kids are already well aware that life isn't fair and that some times the good guys don't always get their happily ever after. Ask a 11 year old to read Cinderella and you'll most likely get eyerolls. While a child might dream of being a king or queen still, at this age that dream is a desire for power against the almighty adult. It's not because they believe that a prince is suddenly going to sweep them off to a magical kingdom.

Kids know how reality works at this age. They're beyond the fairy-tale Happily Ever After. But they like reading about characters who overcome the odds, achieve their goals and, while they might cry when a loved character dies, there's a sense of satisfaction - provided the character's death had meaning.

Pointless death - that is, death that's only there to end the story - has no place in children or YA writing, of course. It has no place in writing aimed at any age group.  However, death is not nessicarily a terrible thing to expose a child to. And when included in novels, it is generally handled a good deal more tactfully then much of what is shown on TV.

At some point in everyone's life, we're exposed to the idea of death, be it a friend, a relative or a pet. And often we encounter it as a child. When a death occurs in books, generally we see how other characters grieve, but continue to go on with their lives. Even the Bible has this idea of people losing a friend and life going on. I don't see this as a terrible concept for children to be exposed to. Not toddlers and pre-schoolers, naturally. But when kids are old enough not to believe in fairy-tales anymore, they're old enough to be gentlely exposed to some of the darker realities.

Death is a part of life. A sad, heart breaking part, but a part of it. And I believe it's easier for a child to be exposed to it through words on a page, and a fictional character, then it is for them when Fluffy or Fido passes away. Parents need to stop wanting to hide their kids from reality and start being willing to actually parent. When your child reads something sad, sit down, hold them tight and discuss the book. Find the reason for or the good in the death of the character. Explain to your child that, yes, sometimes people die and it is very sad. Let your child discuss it with you.

9 times out of 10, your child is more ready for the grim reality then you think. And the magic of a book is, the character is alive again the next time you open it.
ann_r_starr: (Default)
Well it's been awhile since I updated my progress, so here you go. I'm aimming to reach 43,000 by  the end of the day to get back on track. Wish me luck, everyone. Past performance suggests I'll need it.

Amount of money in Penalty Jar:
$12

ann_r_starr: (Default)
This is why I should do my daily writing in the morning, before playing DnD or going out with Mum for dinner. It's now 2 am and I've only JUST finished my 500 words. I'm half inclined to count this as today's writing and fine myself $2 for not having finished before midnight.

Still I was awake enough that I probably wouldn't have slept anyway, so I think I'll let myself slid just this once. Which means I still have 500 words to write after I wake up.

Damn it. No more 2 am writing.

Number of Words: 38721
Number of Pages: 70
Amount of money in Penalty Jar: $2
Current Mood Music: Pray For Me still.
ann_r_starr: (Default)
Okay, well I haven't been doing enough writing lately, so I decided to get serious. I brought a large glass jar today and labelled it "Penalty Jar".

For every day I fail to write at least 500 words, I have to place $2 into the jar. The contents of the jar can only be reclaimed if I write 1000 or more words in a single day. If I don't write for long enough that the jar fills up, then that money will be donated towards the effort to build an animal shealther here in town.

I'm counting yesterday in this new routine and as I didn't write at all yesterday, I've paid the penality.

Current novel stats:
Number of Words: 38210
Number of Pages: 69
Number of
Broken bones: 3
Number of Cuts: 2
Number of Sick Characters:
2
Number of Angsty moments: 3
Amount of money in Penalty Jar: $2
ann_r_starr: (Default)
No picture today. The word count hasn't changed enough to warrent one.  I should be writing my novel, not my blog, but I felt like taking a brief break. I love Storm's Honour, since Amaro and Talon are a delight to write about. But damn, it's hard to juggle the teenage Amaro and Talon from the novel with the adult versions on Naruta.

Which is why I've been slack in posting on Naruta. It's easier to focus on either writing or posting then it is to do both. And since I'm on a bit of a roll with the novel, Naruta's taking a back seat. Which really isn't fair to anyone, but I think you guys have been amazingly understanding.

Speaking of Storm's Honour, which is what this blog is about, the story is really starting to tighten up in my mind. The endding has transformed slightly from what I'd originally planned in order to add a little more drama before wrapping up the story. What can I say? I like angst in my stories and the originally planned endding has never felt satisfying to me. This one does, but that's all I can say.

On the subject of 'all I can say', once the book is finished and I'm looking for an agent, I'll be removing the preview chapters from the Naruta fanfiction site and friends-locking the previews that are posted here. Some agents consider posting samples on a blog to be pre-publishing the story and I'd like to keep things as simple and drama free as is possible. So guys, if you want to keep reading the previews, ask me for an invite code.

Well, I'm going to get a coffee then get back to work. But before I go, a few stats on Storm's Honour.

Number of pages: 68
Number of evil bastards: 3.5
Number of bones broken: 3
Number of Talon/Amaro arguements: 2
Number of "Author is cruel" moments: 3
Current Mood Music: Pray For Me - Michael W. Smith
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