Sunday, November 3, 2013

NaNoWriMo: Day 3

Started today with 200 words before I had to head to the theatre. I managed to type up another 300 before I had to hit the stage. The show was fantastic, strike wrapped up and I spent a well-deserved post-performance break with my fabulous cast and crew. Arrived home and promptly finished up the night with another 1200 words. 

That, my friends, is how you NaNo!

Daily Word Count: 5284

Daily Excerpt:

The door opened. Steve had to stifle a short yelp as the Stacey that opened the door looked more like Medusa than the Athena he had been expecting. Her hair was covered in snake-like curlers. Dark circles were etched beneath her hazel colored eyes and her normally well painted full lips looked thin and pale. Stacey was a beautiful girl even without make-up on most days. Today was not one of those.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

NaNoWriMo: Day 1 and 2

Day 1:

I began writing at midnight as I knew that Friday was going to be an insanely busy day. I managed to type out 500 words that I'm mostly happy with. I know they're going to need a good polishing once the event is over but that's ok. Beginnings are never my favorite bits to write. Neither are endings. I love being in the middle of the story. That's my favorite part.

After I got to school I was able to type out another 500 words before 3rd period and I finished off the word count with a burst of energy during lunch.

The rest of the day was filled with long drives, a wonderful performance, and an excellent cast party.

Daily Word Count: 1711

Daily Excerpt:

That should placate Frank. Nobody ever volunteered to do the inventory. It required working the ancient forklift, or the fucklift as it was affectionately called behind management’s back. The fucklift had a bad habit of breaking down just as a large plasma screen tv was inches from the edge of the top stock shelf. Steve had the worst luck with the damn thing. It wasn’t unusual that he’d find his paycheck a few thousand dollars short because of broken merchandise. Some weeks, it was as though he was paying ElectronicsWorld to work there.

Day 2:

Headed to the Simpson Library in Mechanicsburg. Started up an hour session of WriteorDie.. I was interrupted briefly by my computer who decided to frighten me by popping up an updates window. For a moment, I thought it was going to begin auto-closing all of my windows. I frantically copy/pasted the work I was writing in WorD (since that doesn't auto-save) which then had WorD flashing red and play the consequence sound (silently since my speakers were turned off, yet I still know its there).

I was able to save my work and the computer did not do a quick restart, thankfully. I finished my writing with 1800 words in an hour. Not too shabby but I know I can do more.

Tonight I have my second to last performance. I may not get anymore writing done but what I have written I love immensely. I really can't wait to share this story with the world (or at least, my family and friends).

Daily Word Count: 3580

Daily Excerpt:

His bright future suddenly became sepia toned and withered away into a dry husk as reality set in. He should really head home. Or at least, to Stacey's house. She didn't start work until noon which meant she should be up drinking her coffee. What better way to nurse his shattered ego then to have it fluffed up again by his adoring girlfriend? And, if he was really lucky, perhaps he could convince her that what would /really/ cheer him up was a little "I'm sorry you lost your job but I still think you're wonderful" sex.

Maybe he wouldn't be /that/ lucky but at least he could try. Besides, girls liked to boost their man's ego, didn't they? Isn't that what all the magazines plastered on their headlines? Steve didn't want to think about it too much. It was enough to imagine walking into her apartment to find her dressed only in her silk panties, with a beer in one hand and a sexy pout that said "Poor baby. Momma will make it better."

Yes. Steve was going to visit Stacey.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy NaNoWriMo's Eve 2013

It's that time of year again!

 Last year I had such great success in creating my own novel that I'm hoping to have the same luck this November. The Raven's Pearl (originally titled Harp during the event) is currently in a rather rigorous revision process. I'm attempting to expand the word count from 61k to 75k. It's no easy task and I'm hoping that this year as I write the first draft of my new novel I will be able to not only hit the 50k mark but exceed it so that I won't have so much fleshing out to do the rest of the year.

 I will be updating the blog with my progress similar to how I posted during April (only without the A to Z blogging).

 Here is this year's story:

 Title: Revenge Ghost, Inc.

 Synopsis: Think The Ring meets Reaper meets John Dies At the End. Thirty-something Steve is out of work, out of love, and out of time to pay next months rent. He takes the first job offered to him as a temp in an oddly named agency called Revenge Ghost, Inc. He's thrust into a supernatural world where his job is to take revenge on poor souls who have been unlucky enough to cross RG's path. Will Steve be able to survive to become more than just an intern and live up to his business card title of "Hella Evil"? Or is he doomed to meet the same terrible fate as those of his "clients"?

 I'm incredibly excited to start! I can't wait to see where this novel takes me. Here's to 30 days of writing bliss! (I hope...)

Friday, May 17, 2013

Blogfest: Best/Worst Movie Remakes

It's been said that there are no more original thoughts. No where is that statement more true than in Hollywood. Every time I visit the theater I see more and more trailers for movies that are remakes of previous films and some of the "original" films aren't even 10 years old (Did we need another Spiderman origin story?). Of course, some of these films end up being just as good as the original. Films like:

Quarantine (2008)

I first saw Quarantine while browsing the free videos that were On Demand from Verizon. I had heard of it before and, being the science geek that I am, I wanted to see exactly how they handled the "plague zombie" outbreak. Any quarantine is frightening. Nothing says panic like realizing you're being isolated from the outside world because you have been exposed to a deadly disease. Add to that horror the possibility of being hunted down by the infected at the same time and there is no chance of escape (for if you step outside the CDC will shoot you)... yeah, that says terror to me. So, I decided to give it a go, turned off all the lights and waited for the film to make me jump.

The jump didn't come until the end. I knew it was coming, I anticipated it and yet it still caught me off guard. Plus, the explanation for the disease wasn't too far off. Granted, they likened the disease to rabies in animals and while it does effect the brains of those mammals, humans are effected in a different manner. Still, if a disease could cause madness in us the way rabies does in animals - that's pretty frightening. All in all, when the movie was over I had a good scare and I was entertained.

Then, a few years later I discovered [REC] on the same On Demand queue. "Ah, that's the Spanish movie that Quarantine is based on," I said to myself and decided to see how close to the original Quarantine had been. I decided to judge it on how much it frightened me since I already knew the ending. I was surprised to find that I still jumped in my seat and my heart pounded in my chest. Quarantine was loyal to the original and still delivered the same scare. I would say that this film was a worthwhile remake of the original Spanish film.

I have a tendency to watch the remake before the original so sometimes I feel I have a bias towards the more modern version. That was not the case for the following remake.

I Am Legend (2007)

I know. I Am Legend has been spoken about numerous times on other blogs. And truly, it's not a bad movie. It does a very good job showing what the world would look like years after humanity (which prompted me to begin watching the Life After People on the History Channel). The science was a bit iffy but I was able to forgive that for the moment and just enjoy it for the action movie that it was showing. Of course, my husband then had to ruin it for me by uttering the most movie-killing quote of "That's not how the book ended."

I'm a stickler for book versions. I tend to love the book more than the film, mostly because you can get more out of a book whereas the film limits you in what you can see and you only know what the director is willing to show you. Yes, the ending is completely different but that's not the flaw I'm going to speak about, even though it's a valid flaw.

My husband informed me that I Am Legend was made into a film starring Vincent Price called "Last Man on Earth". I found the movie on Netflix and decided to give it a go. The tone was different. In I Am Legend you feel the utter emptiness of the city whereas in Last Man on Earth, you hear his thoughts through the day but at night he is plagued constantly by the walking vampires that bang on his house and call out his name. Most of the movie is a flashback of how he came to this point and the big twist ending, that was missing in I Am Legend, was far more effective.

If you have the chance (or Netflix) I suggest watching the Last Man on Earth. It's a good watch and is still eerie even after all these years.

Comments? Think I'm completely wrong? Have any suggestions for movies? Add them to the comments! I'd love to see what you have to say.

Don't forget to check out the other articles from the blogfest. You can find them here:

Friday, April 26, 2013

W is for Words

“Henri,” Justin said swiftly, giving Henri a concerned look. “I really think I ought to stay with you. I mean... look who Aidan brought with him.”

Toby felt everyone turn to stare at him and he looked away. Did he constantly need to be reminded of who he was? “Of course I do,” Henri replied. “Aidan brought with him his son, Toby and his friend Finnean.”

“Are you telling me that you don’t see-

Henri lifted his hand, cutting off Justin’s words. “What I see are three people who are in need of a hot cup of tea and some rest. We can always discuss the circumstances of their visit later. In the meantime, your responsibility is to Laurie. I’ll make certain everyone else is settled.”


The thought came fast and confused from Finn. Toby glanced over at his friend to see the almost panicked expression on his face. “We aren’t staying,” Finn said frantically. “We can’t be! Gabe is out there. What if Luna and Harp don’t make it in time? What if they need our help?”

He turned to Aidan and Toby could see that Finn’s panic was working it’s way into a full blown hysterical outburst. “You,” he said, pointing an accusing finger at Aidan. “You promised that we would go after them. That we would get Henri’s help and follow them.”

“Calm down,” Aidan said. “There’s no reason to get upset.”

“Of course there’s reason to be upset!” Finn nearly shouted. “Gabe still has the Pearl! You said that it would kill him. If we’re not going after him with help then I’ll go after him myself. I’m tired of waiting. My brother is in danger and I have to-”

“Finn. Be quiet!”

Silence filled the room and it took Toby a moment to realize that the words had come from his own mouth. A strange, docile expression crossed over Finn’s face as he turned to Toby. It’s the bond, he thought sadly. He’s waiting for me to give him a command.


Henri watched the two boys closely, noting the strange behavior. It wasn’t difficult to see that events were back in motion. “Why don’t you three come with me into the parlor. Justin and Laurie have other things to do. Perhaps then you’ll be able to tell me what has been happening since last we spoke.”

“It’s a long story,” Aidan sighed.

Henri smiled. “I have plenty of time.”

Word Count: 8022

The end is close in sight! Not for the story but for my word count. I think I have a good start, although in May I might begin a brand new project just to see how far it will get me. It's not the story, it's me. I need a break - take a breath from the characters and story line. I need to remember why I love them and to stop thinking that the story could be good if only I was a better writer. I need to stop thinking too far ahead and living in the end result instead of enjoying the journey to get there.

All insecurities aside, it was a good day of writing complete so I'll chalk it up as a win.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

V is for Voice

“This is Laurie,” Justin said with an amused sigh in his voice. “He’s Henri’s new apprentice.”

“Does this mean that you’ve finally outgrown your position?” Aidan asked with a chuckle. Justin’s face turned red for a moment, embarrassed before he regained his composure.

“Laurie, this is Finn and ... Toby,” he introduced, hesitating when he reached Toby’s name. The name ‘Caspian’ hung in the air unspoken and it did little to make Toby feel any more comfortable.

“Nice to meet you, sirs,” Laurie replied politely, extending his hand toward Finn first and then Toby. “I apologize about the kitchen. I didn’t know that the ‘clean oven’ spell would backfire.”

“Is that what you were trying to do?” Justin said, shaking his head. “The next time you want to try out a new spell without supervision, don’t. Just wait for me. I’ve been around enough wizards that I know a thing or two about spells.”

Justin’s words were odd to Toby and for the first time he noticed the amber color of Justin’s eyes. “You’re a Wolf,” he blurted out.

“That he is,” a familiar voice said as Henri slipped into the room, handing a paper bag to Laurie. “A member of the Main Pack, actually.”

“A disowned member,” Justin grumbled, although the red color was back and he looked uncomfortable. This was clearly not a topic that Justin liked to talk about.

“I wouldn’t say disowned. I would say ‘gracefully abdicated from the family’,” Henri grinned, ruffling Justin’s hair affectionately.

“That means the same thing,” Justin said sourly.

“But it has a better ring to it,” Henri chuckled.

Word Count: 7440

April is winding down fast! Just when I think I'll have more than enough time to finish my Camp goal the days rapidly slip by. I'm at the point where it's a love/work relationship with the story. I love it, I really do, but every time I sit down to write I think of only a few words before my mind wanders. I think it might be time to break out "Write or Die". It's what really helped me during NaNo last year. It's amazing how much I can spit out when I have a time limit.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

U is for Ugly

“You are assuming that Seth is going to play by the rules. Knowing him, he has a card up his sleeve to keep him from following through with the deal,” Finn said with a frown. “The guy is a bastard. I’m going to guess that you have a plan B?”
            “Of course,” Gabe winked at them. “What good is a plan A without a plan B? We do have some leverage, considering he sought me out and the buyer will have his head if he doesn’t deliver on time. If it turns ugly, distract the goons and run. We’ll meet on the roof three buildings down.”
            “If I didn’t know any better I’d say you were enjoying yourself,” Toby snorted.
            “Of course he’s enjoying himself,” Finn agreed. “Do you know my brother? He’s not happy unless the world is on the verge of falling and will only be saved by a last ditch effort completed by Gabriel.”
            “It’s part of my charm,” Gabe insisted. “And girls love it.”
            “Oh really?” Finn laughed. “When was the last time you had a girl around to even hint that she fancied you? I think maybe you were knocked on the head instead of Toby.”
            “Again, I’m going to ignore that you said that for the sake of time. Could we get back to the plan?”
            “It’d be nice to get back to something,” Toby murmured.
            “If it all goes to hell, run,” Finn said, prompting Gabe to continue. “Otherwise, you’re going to give the ball to Seth and hope that he leaves and that’s the last we see of him or that ball. Does that about sum it up?”
            “Brief and to the point,” Gabe grinned, clapping his brother on the shoulder. “I knew I could count on you to read through the lines. I’ll go first, you both come in second. Wouldn’t want him to shoot you before I could stop him.”
            “Wait, he’s likely to shoot us?” Toby asked his voice tight with worry.
            “He’s about as likely to shoot you as I am,” Gabe said, although Toby had to admit that he wasn’t at all comforted by that. “Stick close and everything will be fine. Are we agreed?”
            “Agreed,” Finn and Toby said in unison just as they heard the distant chimes of the bell marking the top of the hour. It was only ten and yet the deep tone sounded ominous. Gabe shook himself from the dark thought and waved Finn and Toby along to follow him, walking the last block alert for any trouble.

Word Count: 7112

Today's selection is from the first book, The Raven's Pearl (formally known as The Wizard's Pearl). Stress at school and home is making writing difficult but it's still moving, albeit slowly. I just found out I'll only be teaching two sections of Chemistry next year which makes me sad. I'm looking into other school districts but I really wish there was a way they could keep me on full time. Whatever happens, happens and I'll keep hoping for the best. Who knows - maybe one of my Queries will be snatched up and I'll have an entirely different project to work on. It could happen!