Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books On My Fall TBR List

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the lovely folks over at The Broke And The Bookish. Every week, bloggers from all over are invited to share their own top ten lists based on the topic of the week.  You can find all Top Ten Tuesdays here.

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Top Ten Books On My Fall TBR List

Or as I like to call it, books I promise I’m going to read soon, but probably won’t.  I haven’t been the best at actually following through on reading what I plan on reading.  But I’m pretty sure this time will be different, because there are quite a few that I really need to read!  I had a lot of trouble limiting it to ten,  so I think I’ll be having a fun-filled fall full of reading!

  1. The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak: The movie trailer and glowing reviews made me want to read The Book Thief.  Part of me wants to wait until the movie comes out but part of me wants to read it now!
  2. The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare.  Now that I’ve seen the movie, I feel like I can re-read City Of Bones and then move on to reading the rest of the series.
  3. Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein.  Another book I’ve heard great things about, and I think it’s time I need to know what everyone’s talking about!
  4. Daylighters by Rachel Caine.  I’ll be sad to see Morganville Vampires end, but I’m also looking forward to it because after the cliffhanger in Fall Of Night.
  5. The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle.  It’s a post-apocalyptic novel that focuses on the Amish.  How could I not want to read it?
  6. The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare.  If I’m going to read The Mortal Instruments, I might as read Infernal Devices.  Especially since I got them all on sale!
  7. Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi.  I keep meaning to read it, but never seem to get around to it…
  8. Beautiful Chaos/Beautiful Redemption by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. Because I really need to finish the series.
  9. Allegiant by Veronica Roth.  I feel like an explanation isn’t needed for this one. Also: I need to know what’s going on!
  10. Between Shades Of Gray by Ruta Septys.  I’m starting to think needing to know what people are talking about is a trend this fall, because this is another book I want to read so I know what people are talking about.  Also, it does sound really interesting and totally up my alley.

Dreaming Of Stores

It’s been a while since I’ve shared some of my dreams, so I think it’s time to share some.

I’ve had a few dreams over the last few weeks where I’ve been shopping in grocery stores.  Once in a while it’s Wal-Mart, but mostly grocery stores.

I don’t need a dream dictionary to tell me that it could mean that I’m looking for something I don’t have.  Apparently a large and/or well-stocked market means there are possibilities and choices…which I have and really need to narrow down…

Dreams are interesting things, and they can tell us a lot.  I guess my subconscious is trying to tell me that I need to make sure that I’m okay and am a happy and fulfilled person.  It won’t be easy, of course, but these things usually aren’t…right?

In the spirit of self-love, I suppose I should do some sort of contract or something.  I don’t want to go into this blind, and while I have some thoughts on what self-love means, I feel like I need to have a plan…some things that I NEED to work on and achieve this year.  I will work on that over the next week.

It really is amazing what a dream can set in motion.  Although it’s something I really should have been working on in the first place.

I can’t think of anything else, so enjoy your weekend!

What To Do?

It’s a week into December, and not writing everyday is still a little weird.  For all the thinking I’ve done about how much I wanted to work on old projects, I have yet to work on anything.  But since we’re only a week into December, there’s still the rest of the month to get writing. 

I’ve been thinking about inspiration the last couple days.  It can come from anywhere, and even when I’m not writing, I try to let my mind wander.  Listening to podcasts or a song, letting my mind wander while I’m crocheting, or reading a book can all provide inspiration.  

I guess this could possibly be a time of regrouping.  I know which projects I want to work on, but I do have a few projects that I’d like to work on at some point.  Like the roller derby novel and the historical fiction novel.  Maybe I’ll actually be able to decide on a plot and start planning it over the next year…after some reading of course!

I think I’ll try and get back into some sort of writing schedule.  What that is, I don’t know.  It might be everyday, it might be a couple days a week.  I think I’ll have to try different things and see what works. 

Perhaps I should crochet myself a really cool hat that can be my writer’s hat and get me into the writing mood!  Or something else, like a writing scarf.  Definitely something cool, that I only wear when I’m writing.  Perhaps that could lead to a plot bunny…

Feeling Good About Writing

I feel pretty good about writing right now, so that’s good right?  I’m currently having no trouble writing, and last night, I didn’t want to stop.  There is no guilt (for the moment) so that’s good, and it’s a lot easier to write when I’m not feeling distracted and stuff. 

I’m currently at 35,277 words, writing an astounding 2,495 words!  If I write around 1700 words a day, I’ll finish on time.  I still have no clue what I’m doing with it, so I’m writing whatever pops into my head right now.  Although that does seem to be working for the moment…

Yesterday was a little busy, but fun!  I made apple pie for the first time, and I think it’ll come out okay when I bake it on Thanksgiving. 

My grandma was showing me a bunch of pictures she found, and it was really cool.  They were pictures of her family and there were a few of when she married my grandpa.  It’s fun seeing pictures of her when she was little, and even though I didn’t recognize a lot of the people in the pictures, it was fun to see a part of her life.

Today’s plan is to make cookies!  I was thinking about chocolate chip, but I also want to make peanut butter cookies.  I’m more in a mood for peanut butter, so maybe that’s what I’ll do today.  I’m pretty sure the mess will be a lot smaller than the mess that followed the apple pie I made yesterday.  It’s too bad I didn’t get a picture of the kitchen…

I think that’s it for now, so I’ll try and get some sleep, since I’m going to be busy today.

Is It Really About The Word Count?

I’ve been talking (mostly complaining) about how I’m behind on my wordcount and how I can’t seem to focus on writing. 

But I’ve decided that I need to worry less about wordcount and how far behind I am.  I’ve realized I seem to do better when I know random details about my characters and what motivates them, and when I have more than a vague plot.  But since those are things I don’t really have this year, I just need to keep writing.  Do I need to write the 1667 everyday?  No,  but that is my goal.  Would I like to be all caught up with both novels?  Yes.  But the words will come.  I’m hoping to work on my characters a little, and think about things that need to happen, and I’m hoping that will help me out. 

I’ve been worrying too much about how I’m not writing, so I’ll do my best to write more and worry less.  I’ve been much further behind than a few days, and still managed to get to my goals, so the words will come.  I may be struggling now, but I just need to trust the NaNo ninjas and believe that it will all work out in the end.  I’ll get some cool idea and then lots of words will come!

  • The Mermaid One: I’m at 13,025 words.  It’s going okay, and I’ve written about a witch and an old man who are arguing about whether to take sides in the mermaid war.  At least I found an interesting path, and it’s one that’s working right now, so that’s what I’ll go with.
  • The Mistaken Identity One: I’m at 13,180 words.  For something that’s supposed to be about a mistaken identity, it’s barely come up.  In fact, it’s mostly about…nothing.  Just Kaylee chatting with the coworker who wears purple a lot.  Why name characters when you can give them colors?  Something interesting needs to happen…and when in doubt, add ninjas.  I need to find my ninjas for this one.

The grand total: 26,205.  Tomorrow, I’ll be posting more funny typos!

 

Yay For Write-Ins!

I had a productive day yesterday, and feel very glad I went to a write-in yesterday. 

I managed to write a lot more than I have been (at least since the weekend), and I’m definitely at the same point for both of them now, so that’s always good.  I’m roughly 3 days behind for both novels, so catching up completely and ending up with a combined 100,000 is not out of the question.  I just need to write a little more everyday and hope that I can have a couple days where I write an insane number of words. 

  • The Mermaid One: 11,689 words!  I’ve been focusing a lot on the other mermaids in the world, and the different clans they have, which has been a big help.  I think I’m going to be writing more about the magical sanctuaries too, so that’ll be fun, and I get to write about fairies and stuff!
  • The Mistaken Identity one: I’m at 11,670.  I think my problem with this one is that I didn’t do enough planning for it.  I didn’t have a clear idea of it before I started, and I’m really starting to feel that.  I’ll give it another week, and if it’s something I’m still struggling with, I’ll drop it.

I’m at 23,359 right now, and I’m aiming to be 2 days behind by the end of the weekend.  There isn’t that much to report, but I think I’ll be posting some of my funny typos this weekend.   

 

 

 

 

Plot # 2 For 2011!

So, I was going to do the novel about the funerals, but I decided over the weekend that I didn’t want to write that one.  Instead, I’m switching to the 3rd plot I had.

This novel is about a girl who’s being followed by a group of men in black suits.  I have 3 characters, and I only have the basic details on them.  I think I’ll need to add a few characters, and they’ll just be there.   

The main character is Kaylee, and she is the one being followed.  The direction that I’m going in- at least for now- is that she works for a diplomat (or someone really important) and gets mistaken for someone else.   

Something that’s a distinct possibility is that she stumbles across something she wasn’t supposed to and they realize she could be useful.  Only there’s someone else who stumbles across this mysterious something and they send an assassin out to take care of it.  And of course, the assassin tries to kill her because they somehow mistake her for someone else.       

I still need to add a few characters, and I also need something mysterious that she can stumble upon.  Maybe I should steal an idea from my other novel for the year and have her stumble on a magical creature sanctuary.  I’ll go with that if I can’t come up with anything else. 

This is going to be a short one, since I’m still working out some of the details.  Tomorrow’s post will be about the music I have for this novel.

Research

As November approaches, I’ve actually been working on my plots.  I’ve only been working on one, the one about the 2 friends who make a pact.  I’ve narrowed things down to either fairies or mermaids, but even more questions have popped up.  There are definitely a lot of things I need to work out between now and November.  Like, how is it going to kill her?  Is it something she’s allergic to?  Why can’t her body handle the fairy or the mermaid part of her?  Are there other people who are having the same problems as Poppy?  Does the fairy blood/mermaid whatever show up as something foreign or does everything appear normal because people think fairies and mermaids don’t exist?  Or is it a combination of both where there’s something weird but no one realizes it’s because she’s a fairie and so they think it’s some new disease or something?  How did she become part-fairie or part-mermaid?  Is one of her parents a fairie or a mermaid or is it some totally bizarre genetic mutation that turns people into mythological creatures?  Or maybe everyone has the ability to be a fairie or mermaid but only a certain segment of the population becomes a fairie because of a random mutation?

So, you can see my problem in actually working out some of the details, but I’m determined to make it work.  I think it’ll be easier to work out some of these questions once I actually pick something.  This is why I prefer to (mostly) wing it.  It’s just easier to make stuff up as I go along, but unfortunately, this isn’t something I can really make up as I go along.  I can, but I think I’m going to have to put in a lot of work ahead of time.  I’m thinking about shifting between her journal entries and the present but I’m not sure yet.  If I can think up of some more characters, and *maybe* plan some of the journal entries, then I’ll do that.  Otherwise, I’m not sure how I’m going to do this.  I definitely need to go back and forth between past and present…somehow.

I generally avoid research, but I have it to, I try to do just enough to get me through NaNo.  It’s interesting that after several years, I’m shifting more towards things that require me to do research.  I usually avoid research because I’ll focus too much on research and not enough on everything else.  I still have trouble finding the right balance, but maybe I’ll get better at it as I keep coming up with ideas where I actually need to research stuff before writing it.  I suppose I could always just ignore any research and write things that are potentially inaccurate, but where’s the fun in that?  I think I’m going to let the novel dictate how much I research because different things require different amounts of planning.  You wouldn’t plan historical fiction and fanfiction the same way, and you wouldn’t approach fantasy and romance the same way, so I really should try to let the novel dictate the amount of effort I put into planning and researching it.

Hopefully the research I do turns out okay, and it’s definitely going to be fun!

What To Talk About?

First, I really want to talk about t.v.  I watched Pan Am on Sunday and Terra Nova on Monday.  That just leaves the premiere of House and Once Upon A Time.  So, I’m not really into the whole retro tv show thing, but Pan Am has been hyped up, and it’s the only one that’s really jumped out at me.  I liked it, and I think I’ll keep watching.  It was better than I expected, and I’m really curious about one of the character who had more mentions than appearances in the episode.  Hopefully, we’ll see more of her over the course of the season.  If we don’t see her, I hope they at least explain a little more about her.  And Terra Nova!  Another show that was really hyped, and while I liked it, I’m still not sure.  I was reminded of Lost when I was watching the premiere, since there’s something odd about Terra Nova.  Seriously, I don’t know what’s going to happen, but it’s definitely something weird.

NaNo’s getting really close!  A month and a few days…and I still need to work on all my plot bunnies.  Since I have a few weeks left, I really need to get into gear and start working on this.  That might actually mean something if I hadn’t been saying that for the last few months.  But this time, I really mean it!  Because, you know, I have 3 ideas, and there is no way I can absolutely wing it this year.  I have a general idea for each one, but I actually need to work out the details, since they’re all the sort of novel that need to be planned.  At least to a certain degree, because if I don’t, it’ll be a hysterical mess that will make me want to bang my head against the wall.  Oh wait, don’t I do that already?  Why, yes, yes I do, but even more than normal.  If I don’t plan, it’ll end up being like that year when I just started writing a novel feeling inspired by a song.  As entertaining as that was…I really need to not do that again.

I do have an announcement to make.  Next month (which is really this week), I’ll be switching to a 5 day a week posting schedule, and I’ll be introducing some specific columns.  Music Mondays, Writing Wednesdays, TV Fridays, and Tuesday/Thurdsay…I have no idea what’ll be filling those 2 days…probably book reviews and stuff that doesn’t really fit with the specific columns.  I might be posting on Saturday or Sunday every once in a while, but I’m not promising anything.  In November, I’ll be posting everyday, but that’s because it’s NaNo, and NaNo is a really big event in my life.  Monday/Wednesday/Friday should be kind of obvious right?  I’ll talk about music (or podcasts) on Mondays, writing-related things/updates on Wednesdays, and recap the week in t.v. on Fridays.  I may deviate from that schedule, but if I do, it won’t be very often.  Because what’s the point of having a schedule with different features and stuff if I’m not going to stick to it?  The last week of October will be devoted solely to NaNo, and maybe the first week of December too, as a pre-NaNo special, and a post-NaNo wrap-up.

What is bringing about this change?  I really want to do something different with my blog, and while I’m not running out of things to say, sometimes…I just don’t want to post something.  And yet I do post something.  There is another reason why I’m trying out something different.  When I started this blog 11 months ago (has it really been that long?), it was to talk about my writing, and to chronicle my attempt to write 3 50k novels in one month.  Sure, I talked about food, and music and some other stuff, but I tried to connect it all to writing.  But nearly a year later, I talk about everything except writing.  I wanted to update my “posting schedule” and introduce new columns on specific days to reflect everything that I talk about.  Everything I talk about will still be around, but on specific days.  I feel like I’m lost a little bit of my blogging focus, and hopefully an actually schedule with specific things on specific days will help me regain some of that focus.

So, that’s it for today…I should have a book review posted sometime this week.  Have a great day everyone!

Mythology Is Pretty Important

Mythology is going to be really important in at least one of my plot bunnies, maybe even two of them.  I’m going to focus on some of the mythological creatures and beings that may end up in The Pact.  If any of the information isn’t new to you, I’m sorry, but hopefully it’ll help me get some focus. 

  • Faeries popped into my head immediately.  The word faerie comes from Middle English word faierie, which seems to come directly from the Old French word Faerie.  Ultimately, though, the word faerie is derived from the Latin word fata, or one of the Fates.  So faeries are guardians in the ultimate sense of the word.  Can you imagine getting sick because you’re trying to protect something, and nothing is good enough?  Faerie is a pretty broad category, though, if the wikipedia page is any indication.  But still, I like the image of a faerie.  There are lots of faeries out there, so I’m pretty sure I can think of something interesting.   
  • Mermaids: I don’t have a clue how to work in a mermaid, but I really like the idea.  Mermaid comes from two French words, mer, which means sea, and maid, which is a girl or a young woman…obviously, right?  Mermaids sing to gods or people to enchant them and distract them from what they’re doing.  In some stories, mermaids squeeze the life out of men as they drown while they try to rescue them.  There are a lot of mermaid stories out there, and I really like the image of a girl who’s part mermaid or something. 
  • Selkies can become human by taking off their seal skin, and return to their seal form by putting their seal skin back on.  There’s not much on the wikipedia page, but the legends are really interesting, and I’m sure I could adapt the legends to fit the story. 
  • Sirens…I’m starting to detect a them here, perhaps something water related is where I should focus my attention.  Sirens, if you’re not familiar with them, are 3 bird-women who are portrayed as seductresses who lured sailors to the rocky coast of their island with their enchanting voices and music.  I’m pretty sure I could work this in somehow, but since it’s a fantasy, it can happen. 

I think some kind of water creature is where my thoughts eem to be headed, and there’s going to be some very strong imagery.  I’ll definitely need some to have a clear image of what Poppy looks like.  If I can actually get myself to work on it, it should be really fun.