IWSG: Writing Admin & Wattpad Experiment


Today is the first Wednesday of the month. This post is part of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG)! This group was started by Ninja Captain Alex.

So I kinda missed March for this blogging thing. Gotta get better at that :)

I did a lot of things last month that were non-writing but still important. I’d love to always be drafting a new project while editing/publishing/making covers/admin and all the other lovely aspects of being an indie author, but sometimes I’m too busy.

Sometimes I’m frustrated with a sequel that doesn’t want to be outlined.

And I’m okay with that.

See, flexibility is key. I’m still not too good at that, but as long as you are making plans and accomplishing some of them, then you are not wasting that planning time. It’s impossible to foresee everything that life might throw at you.

If you want to see what I’ve been up to, you can read the story I’m currently writing on wattpad for free here: https://www.wattpad.com/story/51276326-ghost-hours

And if you want to read that same story a day before the rest of the world, sign up here to get it in your email: http://eepurl.com/bWPsK1


Pre-order Demonstruck, a Prequel to A Song of Dreams and Demons

Wondering what Rynlee’s life was like before she was reunited with Jeynen? Now you can find out!

This story is set during Ryn’s very first year as a Purator. There’s a hidden darkness in the school, and Ryn is kind of failing one of her classes!

See how she gets from there to the powerful demon hunter she is in A Song of Dreams and Demons by pre-ordering the prequel, Demonstruck. This novella will be available on April 7th, and it will be a higher price. If you want to get it for only 99 cents, preorder now.


Insecure Writer’s Support Group

Hi guys! I just joined this group that shares their doubts and fears related to writing. Everybody on the list posts on the first Wednesday of the month talking about their writing progress to support each other. Here’s the list for anyone who wants to know more.

So starting on March 2nd, you can read my posts once a month about writing struggles.

Book Re-Launch!!!

I published Rynlee’s Song exactly one year ago.

Then I took it down, and it took me months to find a good editor. If any of you are looking for one, you can hire her from here.

Today, my book is back out on the market, with a new title, updated cover, and the same story – just a lot more polished :)


Here’s the new cover, guys!!! I’m so excited to share this new edition with you.

December/January Reflections

So this is combined because obviously I haven’t been blogging for a while. These two months have been about the same anyways, not much to report.

Writing Goals Update

Since the last Reflections post, I have done more writing, but not every day. You know how life is, right? Things get in the way, and once you miss a single day, that becomes a week and then you don’t even realize you had forgotten to write!

I have been keeping better track of my word count on the days I do write, though. I have a calendar and stickers method that I’ve seen other authors use. Basically, 1000 words written means I get to put one sticker on the square for the day. I have many days that are blank, but also many days that have 3 or 4 stickers each :)

Things I Learned

  • I’m mentally stronger than I think I am. If I really put my mind to what I’m writing and place its importance above the other tasks in my day, I can easily write 1500 to 2000 words an hour, following my outline. I just need the discipline to avoid distractions!
  • I need to have a schedule. Working at home is both awesome because you can work any hours that you want, but also evil because you don’t have anyone to keep you accountable for the hours that you work. I’m still deciding on what that schedule needs to be, and it will need to change in a few months because I have a seasonal job that will take more of my time starting in March/April.


READING. There are so many good books that I got for Christmas/My Birthday (which is in January) that I’ve been reading instead of doing my own writing! Some days I can’t put a book down and will end up reading it for hours, or even finishing the book in one day. Right now the distracting book is Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld.

What Else Is New In My Life?

The new edition of my first book (now titled A Song of Dreams and Demons) is coming out!!!! My wonderful editor, Jen of LiterallyJen has finished the copyedits and I’m going to have the new version out with a new cover on February 4th, exactly one year after the first edition was published. SO EXCITED :)

November Reflections

So last month was NaNoWriMo! I technically made it by writing at least 50k of words in various projects, and I did actually finish a draft for a new series, but it was only 30k, and the rest of the words were for other stories.

Writing Goals Update

Since this is the first “Reflections” post I’m doing (which I want to do regularly at the end of each month/beginning of the next month) I’ll just put my goals for December here.

Write. Every. Day. This includes outlining and editing days, because I can’t usually write parts of a first draft when I have on other hats, like letting out my inner editor or being non-creative and analytical for publishing.

Also, I need to figure out a consistent schedule for this blog, so you guys know when to expect updates from me on stuff. Since today is a Tuesday, let’s say I will start by posting every Tuesday, only once a week until I get better at this xP

Things I Learned

These past few months have brought a LOT of changes into my life, and not all of them writing-related. Since this is my website, and there are a lot of parts of my life I want to share that are not about writing, you can expect a little of everything when you read my stuff here, from nail polish to drawing to gardening to cooking to daily life in Canada as a stay at home wife!

So on to what I learned in November:

  • The more you write, especially every day, the easier it gets. I’ve heard this before (and it applies to any creative pursuit, not just writing) but I never really learned it until I had been writing a lot each day consistently. It’s true: your inner editor or whatever you want to call your doubts, self criticism and fear, is MUCH less when you are consistent.
  • I am still a child! At my church’s Christmas party last week, there were coloring pages at each table for the kids. Hubby and I sat with my parents & siblings (all of them are teens or barely adults now) so there were no little kids monopolizing the crayons. I totally colored in some candy canes, and my husband did one of Rudolf! Hey no judging – it was relaxing.
  • It can be fun learning to grocery shop/cook with very little money and inexpensive ingredients. We had a very expensive car repair recently, which has made us more broke than we used to be, and I’ve had to get creative with our (almost non-existent) food budget. Really, I’ve learned to appreciate simple, healthy dishes more and I don’t mind it so much any more.


  • Gah. YouTube. I’ve been obsessed with listening to covers/mashups of songs by people like Sam Tsui, Boyce Avenue, Kurt Hugo Schneider, while I’m working on non-writing stuff like making book covers or writing this post. The only problem is I like watching the music videos too because they’re so awesome and creative, but then I’m not working if I’m paying attention to the video…

What Else Is New In My Life?

I cut off my hair in October and LOVE it, but it grows so fast that it’s already bugging me and I want it cut again lol. My hair was armpit/boob length for many years but I have had short hair before. Story of my hair’s life is cutting it short (chin length-ish, I’ve never had a pixie) and then being too lazy to keep up with more cuts, so it would grow super long again, and then I’d get sick of it and chop it to my chin again, and repeat, and repeat…but now I know shorter suits me better, both in looks and for my lifestyle for washing/maintenance.

Maybe next month I’ll include a picture or two in these kinds of posts.

Musical Inspiration

Book update: Rynlee’s Song is now titled A Song of Dreams and Demons and will be out sometime in early 2016 if I can make my deadlines with the other two books. Note: the content of the book will be the same, with some copyedits to fix grammar mistakes (the story will be the same) and I am only changing the title and updating the cover to have the new title on it, same picture on the cover.

A common question writers get is: where do you get your ideas?

This question bugs most writers (lol).

Here’s why, at least for me. I’ve been writing since about 2008 and over those years I’ve had dozens of characters walk into my head and begin their stories. The books I’ll be publishing for many, many years are simply fully written drafts of old ideas, characters and worlds that have been with me since high school. So it feels odd to me to talk about where they come from, as if asking where I get my long hair. Um, I grew it out over many years, it’s a part of me. Just like my book ideas are a part of me over many years. Now, as for how I got those ideas in the first place, here’s how that works.

It’s usually always from another book, movie, game, or piece of music. Rarely, since I write fantasy, do I get ideas from people around me or real life. Reality obviously plays a big role in the kind of books I do write, and inspires small pieces here and there of the story, but for the overwhelming majority of ideas, they come from other media.

When I’m reading/watching a movie/playing a video game/listening to scores and instrumental music/occasionally listening to music with lyrics, then I just imagine what if…. and scenes come into my head. Fully fledged characters who exist in my subconscious come onto the stage of my brain and start telling me about their life and their world.

I also, but not often, get inspiration from dreams. Two of the ideas I’ve been sitting on for years, waiting to write the first drafts, came from (separate) very specific, very bizarre dreams. The rest of my 20+ list of books to write are from movies/music/books, etc.

Rynlee’s song (now A Song of Dreams and Demons) has been a part of my life for so long that I really don’t remember what inspired it. Since I’ve been writing it over such a long period of time and growing tremendously as a writer, I only remember wanting to write about a girl who goes on an adventure with a boy, because that mostly describes the kind of books I like to read.

If you aren’t an aspiring writer, it might be hard to understand how alive and real characters seem to writers. Obviously we know they aren’t real, but I often think about and talk about my babies, as my bff and I call our characters, as if they were. These fictional people are a huge part of my life, and it’s kind of like going on many different personal journeys in many different people’s shoes, and then getting to share their story with the world once published.

Being a writer is amazing.

If you are just starting out as an aspiring writer and wanting to write a book, but you don’t have any ideas, what do you do? Here’s my advice: Go onto YouTube and search for “Two Steps From Hell” and click on any video that catches your eye. Click on related videos and keep listening to music while thinking about your favorite characters from other books or movies. Keep doing that until you find something intriguing enough to want to know more about.

Relaunching a Series

Not that anyone is reading my blog yet, but I figured I should write a post about this.

I’ve decided to pull my book Rynlee’s Song from all retailers. It’s currently not available anywhere to buy, but that’s only temporary. I’m going to be re-releasing the entire series after I’ve finished writing the other two books in the trilogy.

The plan for now is to write the next two books as fast as I can manage, and then after all 3 are ready for publication, release them all 2 weeks apart, along with a novella I already wrote a couple months ago. So my focus now will be on writing those drafts and getting everything prepared for a relaunch. I’ll be sending out email newsletters with the details.

On Authors Reviewing Books.

Just to be clear: this post is about authors posting reviews on other books, not their own. (I have rated my own book 5 stars only on goodreads, because I can. Because goodreads has a spot that says ‘review from the author’ for a reason.)

I LOVE books. I was a reader way way long before I was a writer. Every author starts this way, just like every actor watches movies before acting in them, every painter goes to art shows and looks at paintings before doing any painting.

I believe it is the right of everyone who loves to read to say their opinion about what they read. Why is it any different that I also write books? I know not all authors are like this, but personally I have a few “rules” for myself when I want to post a review:

  1. I am always honest. I will never put a negative review on a competing book to mine just to bring them down. In fact, I don’t even consider other books to be competition. People reading more is good for everyone, not just certain authors. But that is a discussion for another post.
  2. I never post a review less than 3 stars. This is because if I thought that little of the book, I probably didn’t finish it, or if I did finish reading it, I don’t want to have to think about it enough to come up with a quality worded review. Plus, I don’t want anyone to accuse me of putting a negative review a la point #1.
  3. I’m only posting reviews of books I genuinely want to read. I don’t know if this will change in the future, but as of right now, I don’t get any books from publishers to review, or other authors asking me to swap reviews with them, etc. I am only reading books that I buy with my own money. If ever I posted a review that was sent to me for free, I would state that in the review.

So whenever you’re reading what I think about another author’s book, it is actually what I thought about that book. I am fully supportive of authors who want to post book reviews. Reviews keep the industry going, and every author needs them, no matter where they come from. I feel I am supporting and encouraging other authors and readers by still reviewing what I read.

What are your opinions? Do you think famous authors like J K Rowling or Suzanne Collins should post reviews? Or just authors who aren’t so famous and wouldn’t get as much backlash depending on what they say in the review.

My TBR Jar

Like all authors, I read a lot. Obviously, I fell in love with reading long before I ever thought I might want to write my own story. I remember many, many library trips where I’d come home with at least 8 books each time after browsing for hours in the young adult section. Even before that, my parents have always let me pick what I wanted to read, and I’m so happy they did!

My impressionable mind was filled with dragons, magic, and tender first romances as well as death, redemption, revenge, mystery and bittersweet endings.

Recently, I looked through my bookshelves and my ereader and wrote down all the books (and ebooks) I owned that I hadn’t yet read, on slips of paper and put them in a jar. I figured, each time I finished a book, I could draw a random piece of paper and that will be the next book I read. My only rules for myself were:

  1. If I end up not liking the book, I’m allowed to not finish it and draw another paper for a new book
  2. If I draw the name of a book in the middle of a series, I’ll just read the first one, or the next that I haven’t read yet

Today, my husband, mother and I were on a trip out of town and of course I asked hubby if we could stop at the bookstore on the way home. This independent bookstore is one of my alltime favorite places, I just wish it were closer to where I live. I came home with 2 hardcovers and added their names to the jar.


On the trip back home, I finished reading an ebook that I’d drawn from the jar a few days ago, so I got to pick a new one. Funnily enough, after a lot of mixing and not looking, I drew the name of one of the 2 new hardcovers I just bought today!

Don’t you love randomness?

(And yes, my jar is totally a washed, reused Tostitos cheese jar. Deal with it.)