Wednesday, August 28, 2013

What's Up Wednesday: Last RSW Edition (sniff)

So…it's the last week of Ready. Set. WRITE!  *cries*

And while I'm sad that it's over, I definitely want to celebrate your success! So, my fabulous co-hosts and I would like to thank you for participating by offering our fresh eyes (or in Alison's case . . . old eyes) on the first ten pages of your story. Yes—that's FIVE critique giveaways! All you have to do is enter via rafflecopter at the end of this post!
OH—the giveaway is open internationally and is only open to those who have participated in Ready. Set. WRITE! Thank you SO MUCH for participating in the summer writing intensive!
And now for What's Up Wednesday!

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly meme geared toward readers and writers, allowing us to touch base with blog friends and let them know what's up. Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk are the hosts, and we'd love for you to join in the fun! Just hit up their blogs and sign up on the linky. J
What I'm Reading:

I read AMY AND ROGER'S EPIC DETOUR which was beyond epic. Also, I have found new author love in Morgan Matson who is a writing genius, IMHO. More on that next Tuesday when I review SECOND CHANCE SUMMER for YA Book Club. Have you read either of these works of awesomeness yet? You should. Like, this week. Just sayin'.
I'm currently finishing up an incredibly awesome beta read and re-reading THE FAULT IN OUR STARS for my IRL book club.
How about YOU? What are you reading this week?

What I'm Writing:

This week I wanted to finish out RSW with a teensy more ambitious goal: either write 8K or hit the Black Moment and write it.

I wrote a little over 8K (I think it was around 8500, but I've been skipping back and forth between scenes, and I lost track a little bit). I did not write my Black Moment. Okay, lie. I wrote a teensy part of it two weeks ago and wrote two pages in my journal  of random bits of dialogue and stuff I want to happen. But I didn't write all of it. So, that's this week!

No snippet again (I know - HATE ME) but, I will share that I finished out my writing session yesterday by writing a scene in which my goody two-shoes gets pulled over for driving by herself with an expired driver's permit. Prompted many google searches. Oh, the things I've googled in the name of this WiP: musicals with food songs, what guys dickname their penises, athletes who've performed on Broadway. Twinning. Lots more. Sometimes a little TMI, but - won't lie - research can be all kinds of fun.

What have you researched lately? And what are you writing this week?!

What Inspires Me Right Now:
 Just so you know—I used to HATE that quote. I mean, I'm an educator. Do your best was my classroom motto. But last year, teaching math-challenged seniors who needed my class to graduate, that quote really spoke to me. And to them. They didn't have a choice but to pass my class. There was no try involved (okay, so there totally was), but the message was loud and clear: they couldn't just try to pass my class. Either they passed it. Or they didn't.
Same thing with writing—it’s how I motivated myself to finish revisions on a three-year project this past year; it's what keeps me going now. There is no trying to finish a story. You either finish the story. Or you don't.
And I think that's what differentiates us from most people. I think a lot of people have story ideas in their heads, but you, me—we're actually putting those words on the page. We're doing it.
Yoda's getting me through my draft. What's getting you through yours?

What Else I've Been Up To:
Thinking about my kids, my husband, my teacher friends, and my former students and hoping they have an amazing year. Everyone's heading off to school, and, for the first time in my life, I'm not. And while I feel a lot guilty about that, yesterday I was able to walk my son to his classroom on his first day of fourth grade. That's the first time I've been able to do that with him. Ever. This was me after

Being a mom is the best job in the world.

What's up on YOUR Wednesday?! And if you've been participating in RSW, don't forget to enter the giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Congratulations on getting your 8000 words, that's great!

  2. Congratulations on getting so much writing done :D

    I really like that Yoda quote. That and Keep Calm and Carry On, which is the most British advice of all time ;)

    Have a fantastic week!

  3. I'm going to be needing to start in on some serious research soon, as the timeline in my WIP drifts towards Operation Barbarossa, the Nazi invasion of Iran, and America's entry into WWII. I'll also be needing to do a little research into Shanghai in 1942.

    As my WIP is the longest single-volume book I've written to date, I'm not planning to write the planned prequel, guesstimated to be at least as long, right afterwards! I'm hoping maybe six more months and this book's first draft will be complete.

  4. I loved what you said about trying vs. doing. I've talked to a lot of people recently that say they've always wanted to write a book...and someday they will write a book. But you're right, those of us who are ACTUALLY writing books are kind of an anomaly already.

    Rewrites and revisions are the toughest thing for me. And I plan to use your yoda quote for a good kick in the pants... and just DO IT. (yoda and nike will now be suing me for trademark infringement) :)

    p.s. Congrats on over 8K!!! That is awesome!

  5. Those Google searches! Ha!

    Congrats on your first back-to-school without teaching! It's so great that you can walk your kiddos into class now. And congrats on the over-8K--that is something to be really proud of!

  6. Um, your word count this week is AMAZING! Good luck on writing you Black Moment, those are hard and fun. It's a weird combination.

    I love what you say about either finishing the book or not. It is very black and white. Half a novel won't get you anywhere.

    I think it's wonderful that you got to be with your son on his first day of school for the first time, what an awesome thing for a teacher who isn't a teacher this year. Mom job is so important.

  7. Wow congratulations 8k is amazing! Good luck for this week!

    How lovely that you got to walk your son to his class. I have to do that in 3 weeks time for the first time. I'll be a wreck! But I'd hate someone else to do it, being a Mum is definitely the best job in the world :)

    Thanks for co-hosting RSW, it's been brilliant and thanks for the giveaway.

  8. Being a mom is pretty awesome! Congrats on the 8K!! That's awesome!

  9. Congrats on writing 8K this week. That's pretty amazing! I just started reading SECOND CHANCE SUMMER yesterday and I'm enjoying it so far. Hoping to finish in time for the book club next week!

  10. You're doing so amazingly with your word count and your forward progress... I am so inspired! And I love your examples of crazy Google searches... I've been in the same boat lately. It's a challenge to write from a guy's POV and have to get into their mindset and their certain brand of slang. Thank goodness for the Internet (and for helpful husbands!). Best of luck with your goals for the week. The black moment is one of my favorite parts of stories to write!

  11. I have so many books I need to read like now: TFiOS being one of them and also THE BOOK THIEF! I'm currently reading Second Chance Summer for YA Book Club. Hope I finish it in time!

    OMG, your searches made me laugh out loud. I actually don't think I've googled anything too weird. It's usually folklore/mythology stuff (which is weird in and of itself), but nothing that would probably prompt an eyebrow raise.

    RE: the comment you left me - if you want to avoid the whole Miley thing in the VMA's, fast forward through it! Luckily, it's one of the early performances (Gaga opens & it's relatively tame- esp. for her!), and you can go straight to JT's big number (including the NSYNC reunion) which is about the middle of the show. He is amazing - lots of dancing and he is SO GOOD at dancing. :)

    Good luck with the rest of your writing goals! And don't feel too guilty about not going back to school (though I kinda know how you feel - a bunch of my friends are on the grad school track and I'm...not). :) Thanks again for hosting Ready.Set.Write! It was so fun!!

  12. I should not have been taking a drink when I read "dickname." *wipes up water from desk*

    I love WIP research and the more random, the better. I'm pretty sure I've recently looked up: "pictures of scraggly facial hair."

    Congrats on writing so many words!

  13. I love Morgan Matson! Both of her books surprised me, in a really good way. Can't wait to discuss in YABC!

    "And I think that's what differentiates us from most people. I think a lot of people have story ideas in their heads, but you, me—we're actually putting those words on the page. We're doing it." <---I need to remember that when things get tough. I.E., every single day.

    Have a great week, Alison!

  14. Sounds like you're making great progress! And wise words from Yoda. We writers do tend to have interesting Google search histories. :P

  15. Holy cow on your word count! Yes, please. I think I need some of this Yoda inspiration. I'm sad RSW is over, but I've enjoyed Tweeting with you, visiting your blog, becoming writing buddies :) I had the research bug this weekend, too. Watched a documentary on the Battle of Shiloh and read some really,really good Shiloh research that helped me figure out several plot and setting issues I was having. Good luck this week! Even though RSW is over, I'm looking forward to continuing to write with you!

  16. If you think about it, you really can't "try" to write a novel, or a short story, or a piece of flash fiction. You either do, or you don't. Now, you can TRY to make it the best piece of writing to grace a Word document (or a Scrivener project)... but that's rarely what first drafts are about. The first draft stage is the "do, or do not. There is no try" stage. :)

    I have researched some odd things for stories before, but what bothers me the most is when I research things I think I ought to know already but don't... like flowers, or animals, or math.

    Congrats for the 8500 words, Alison! May this week just as, if not more productive for you. :)

  17. Wow, your word counts continue to impress and inspire me. You're like a machine. And those Google searches? Dickname? Bahahaha. My searches are going to bring the NSA to my house one day. Also, did you know you can by uranium (or was it plutonium?) on Amazon?

    And thank you for your Yoda-inspired pep talk. Talk about inspirational!

  18. Congrats on the awesome word count! And on being able to walk your kiddo to school. Although I work outside the home, I've always had the flexibility to do that kind of thing and it's a pretty awesome feeling.

  19. I really enjoyed RSW this summer. It has really helped me. I can't believe summer is almost over. I can't believe that September 1st is Sunday. Crazy. Congrats on the surpassing your writing goals this week. Have a great weekend!

  20. Seriously, I think Yoda must have taught you to use the force or something, because your word count is amazing this week! Way to finish off RSW with a bang!

    I loved AMY & ROGER'S EPIC DETOUR too. It's one I'll have to make a point of reading again someday. I haven't gotten to SECOND CHANCE SUMMER yet, but I've heard a lot of good things about it lately.

    And I agree that being a mom is the best job in the world. Have an awesome week, and I hope writing your Black Moment goes well!

  21. I'm a total Morgan Matson fangirl myself. I loved AMY & ROGER when I read it, and I'm currently loving SECOND CHANCE SUMMER. I only hope I can finish it on time for the YA Book Club discussion. You kicked serious butt with your writing this week, Alison. Whoa! I'm always impressed by the way you can get those words out on the page. Very inspiring! :-) And I think it's fantastic that you got to walk your son to school for the first time. That's really special. :-)

  22. can't believe ready set write is ending. thank you for setting it all up! I really want to read Amy and Roger, it sounds like my kind of book. Good luck with your 8k goal! you can do it!

  23. Haha I'm constantly on google for writing. If anyone is viewing my search history they must think I'm an absolute nutter!

  24. Listen to that Yoda. He knows what he's talking about!

    (I'm with you. Motherhood RULZ!)


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