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Monday, August 3, 2015

Writing and Reading Stuff Going on

Hey everyone, I'm a little late getting my post out this week. I had family stuff come up over the weekend. I thought of just skipping this week's post but figured I had time to write something small about what's been going on with me.

I'm getting excited for Salt Lake Comic Con in September. I'm still waiting to get my full schedule for it, but this last week they announced that James and Oliver Phelps (who play Fred and George in Harry Potter) are going to be attending! Four years ago I got to meet some of the other actors and get their autographs in Florida when the last Harry Potte movie came out.

I definitely want to get James's and Oliver's autographs to go with them. :)

I also definitely want to go back to the Wizarding World in Florida . . . someday . . . when life is flowing more smoothly again.

Going along with the Harry Potter stuff, a lot of you know I wrote my thesis on Harry Potter. The thing is, I love Harry Potter so much that I had to ground myself from it so that I would read other books. I wouldn't have grounded myself, but if this is the industry I'm working in, I should really be reading other things. I haven't read a Harry Potter book in four years. That's a record for me. But I'm happy to say I will be un-grounding myself before the year is over, and I'm super excited. I watched Order of the Phoenix on Friday, in honor of Harry Potter Day, and it just flooded me with feels, and reminded me why I love it so much and why I love writing so much and why I'm probably still single (I want to marry Harry Potter) haha ;)

It's crazy to think J.K. Rowling started writing Harry Potter 25 years ago! When she was 25 years old and on welfare. Now she's 50 and the only person ever to make over a billion dollars off writing novels. It took her five years until she finished the first book, and then it was published two years after that in 1997. Crazy.

I have a few other books I'm going to read first before I crack open Sorcerer's Stone again though. Right now I'm reading Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld. It's the sequel to Leviathan that I did a review on last year. I already like Behemoth better than Leviathan. I just think the concept of the series is fun. It's a retelling of WW1, but on one side (Germany and Austria-Hungary) they use huge machines for warfare, and on the other side (U.K., France, Russia, Belgium) they use fabricated beasts for warfare. See, in this alternate world, Darwin discovered DNA, and so all kinds of crazy animals are being created as weapons. Behemoth even touches on some of Tesla's work too, with machines that harness electricity to attack certain fabricated beasts.

I'm actually listening to the audiobook on this one. The reader is fantastic! He has to do Scottish, English, Austrian, German, Turkish, American (New York) accents and more--all in the characters' voices. Is this book series the coolest thing I've ever read? No. But it's definitely fun, and I recommend it to people who want to try something new and different.

As for my writing, I'm still working at it. Remembering that it took J.K. Rowling five years (and that I started working on this when I was younger than her) helps me chill out a bit. Obviously you don't need to take that long, but sometimes I worry about how long I'm taking. But I'm learning so much. Last September I basically started rewriting my novel (well, starting from the beginning of the middle), and it's so much better. When I go back and look at what I've rewritten in the last year, I'm really proud of the improvement. It's hardly even a comparison to what it was before. It makes me so happy! I know about 95% of the people who will read it won't know what they're really looking at or how all the pieces fit together--they're just reading the story--but I do. And let's be honest: I write to please myself first. I'd do it even if no one else ever saw it.

I don't know, I kind of feel like the first 2-2&1/2 years of trying to write this novel was me trying to learn how to write a novel, and the best way for me to write a novel. I've finally got a process down that I use on a scene-by-scene basis. It's helped a lot. Maybe I'll share it someday.

In other news, I've been doing some work on adapting a novel into a graphic novel (a fancy, more socially acceptable word for a comic book, not a book that has graphic content, for those that don't know). It's been challenging sometimes, but it's nice to grow in a new direction.

Also, I found some more epic music to add to my Epic Writing Music playlist.  This song is my new favorite: "Mana" by Really Slow Motion. For me, it just really captures one of my side characters.

Well, that's about it for my writerly life updates.


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