If You Don’t Start, You’ll Never Finish

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Motivating yourself to start something can be just as hard as motivating yourself to FINISH something.  In all honesty, I would argue that finishing something that you’ve started is actually harder.  It takes a lot of effort; it takes a lot of critical thinking; it takes a lot of time.

But motivating yourself to begin requires a special type of motivation.  You have to be willing to accept that you DON’T know what will come of your endeavor.  No matter how much you plan and outline, there are so many variables.

You have to accept that it’s going to be hard.  It’s going to be difficult.  There are going to be curve balls.

But you have hope, and so you begin anyway.

And this kind of “beginning” motivation is the most important.  Because if you don’t start, you’ll never finish.

You’ve heard me quote this before: “You can’t edit a blank page”.  But you CAN edit a crappy page, because at least you wrote something.

Writing…gosh…sometimes writing is hard.  Sometimes it seems meaningless, as if you’re in your own little world, and nobody cares about you.  Or maybe everyone is stuck in THEIR own little worlds, but their worlds are bigger and more important than yours.

Sometimes writing sucks.

But you have to push through.  It’s that simple.  There’s no “sugar-coating it”.  Writing sucks sometimes, and you have to push through.

And if you WANT to write, but you haven’t started?  If you DREAM about writing, but don’t think you’ll ever finish?

Start anyway.

Because if you don’t start, you’ll never finish.


Ironically, it took me five days to write this because I didn’t have enough time to finish it!!!  What do you think?

Let’s Talk About Dialogue

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You might have great descriptive writing.  You might be able to perfectly describe every detail of your fictional scenery.  You might be able to put your imagination onto the page.  And maybe you’re fantastic at describing actions, throwing in immaculate adjectives and adverbs.

Unfortunately, writing a novel is a lot more than just scenery and actions.  It involves one thing that you NEED to get right: DIALOGUE.

What Does Bad Dialogue Look (…Sound?) Like?

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Let’s be honest with ourselves.  I think we all prefer “realistic-sounding dialogue”.  Nobody likes cheesy one-liners, nobody likes it when we hear a character being all “preachy”.  And sometimes, it’s annoying when a book character has better grammar than us, just because the author was so focused on making the dialogue “perfect”.  We want dialogue that sounds realistic…you know, the way people would really talk in certain situations.

That being said, if we’re still being honest with ourselves…we DON’T want dialogue to be too realistic.

What do I mean?

Listen to a conversation between two ordinary people.  It probably sounds like this:

“Well I was like, you know, uh, shopping for, like, some grapes, pineapples and, uh, carrots…”

Or it sounds like,

“The f***?  Who the f*** would wear those f***ing shoes with that junk-a$$ jacket?”

Am I right, or am I right?

NO ONE PICKS UP A BOOK HOPING THAT THE DIALOGUE WILL BE LIKE THIS.

I’m sorry.  I will not compromise.  It’s BAD writing.  I’m not saying it needs to be lofty, Shakespearean poetry.  But the way REAL people talk is REALLY quite dumb a lot of the time.

Don’t fool yourself by thinking that your dialogue is “realistic” because your characters sound as illiterate and trashy as the average person.  Maybe a character in your story IS illiterate and trashy.  But that doesn’t mean your readers will enjoy or take something away from dialogue that is just as pathetic as the way real people talk.

Let’s try to raise the bar for our readers.  Why not show the culture what real talking sounds like, instead of catering to low standards?  Can’t we…I don’t know…HELP society through our writing?

Dialogue That People WANT

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So it needs to be realistic, without sounding like the way real people talk.  This means that our characters are using words that make sense, given a certain situation.  I mean, a lot of things need to be taken into consideration: the personality of the characters that are talking; the genre the book is in (if it’s a comedy/horror/romance); the time period that the book is set in; etc.

Only you understand the situations and the setting of your characters.  These situations and settings will always be unique…which means I can’t provide you with specific guidelines.

That’s why I would challenge you to find other stories that are similar to yours.  Study dialogue in movies or books that you enjoy.  Writing good dialogue doesn’t have to be hard.

Just keep these things in mind:

  1. the way that my characters talk should make sense.  Please, PLEASE make sure that it makes sense.
  2. It should have meaning.  No one likes random talking, or dialogue that drags on and on.  Writers never do anything without purpose.
  3. Be natural.  Don’t be so crafty with your dialogue that it seems like a script.  I mean…it sort of IS a script.  But it should never seem like that.  Could YOU see yourself saying the things that your characters say?

I hope this helps!  Any thoughts?  What do you think makes for good dialogue?

Will You Love Me?

The closer we get to the point where we are ready to press “publish”…the inner fear begins to grow.  The quivering starts.  The doubt sets in.  Because, as writers, we know that our careers don’t just depend on us…they depend on our readers.  On our audiences.  We try our hardest.  Will it matter in the end?

Publishing date is approaching.  And this isn’t a question I can answer, but, “Will you love me?”

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The Story

As my audience gets larger, it’s important that I reexplain what this blog is about.  This blog is obviously about sharing my experiences as an author/blogger.  Most of my posts are about how we can become better writers and bloggers.

But this blog is also about Elithius.  Elithius is the fantasy series that I’m writing; it had previously been called The Golden Lands, but I decided to change the name because I thought Elithius was a cooler name.

So, what’s Elithius about?

Here’s my logline:

John Hedekira and his friends must track and rescue Cassie and Luke, John’s little sister and brother, before they can be taken and sacrificed to the God of Death by Nirak, the Red Captain.

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That’s the initial plot.  But to go into more detail…

John Hedekira is the main character of this series.  Quite unexpectedly, his home is raided by a band of Evil–mysterious, unearthly creatures–and the Evil kidnap his siblings and leave him for dead.  John survives the encounter, however, is determined to rescue his siblings and get revenge.

The thing is, there’s a time limit; John must save his siblings–Cassie and Luke–before they can be sacrificed to the God of Death.

Saving Cassie and Luke is far from simple.  As John chases the Evil, he makes friends, but loyalties are tested and betrayal is in the air.  His desire for vengeance grows stronger.  A mysterious ghost is discovered to be hunting him.  And even Death itself will try to ensnare John.

John and his friends have to fight with every ounce they have in order to overcome trial after trial.

Can John and his friends rescue Cassie and Luke in time, in spite of these obstacles?  And who will they be when all is said and done?


This is the story I wrote.  I really hope you guys enjoy it when it’s ready!  In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve been posting a little less, but that’s just because I’m trying to finish revising the novel.  Thanks again for all your support!

What do you think of my story?  Does it sound interesting?  Is this a book you would want to read?

Grow Up

Emiya fall

Wouldn’t it be great if you could get paid for doing what you love?  If you didn’t have to worry at all about money, because your dream took care of all that?

You’re not relying on a job.

Not on your parents.

Not on even charity (taking God out of the equation).

You’re relying just on your dream.

We can see the ways in which this would happen…we can imagine it…maybe even taste it.  But then it hits us: well, that’s just a dream…or is it?


You know what I think?

What do you think?

I don’t want to dream anymore.

Huh?  Why?  Dreaming is great!  Dreaming keeps you going!  If you don’t dream, life will be boring.  Life will cease to be exciting.  To not dream is to give up!

No, you’re wrong.

Why?

Because:

“the pleasure of a dream is that it’s a fantasy.  If it becomes real, it was never a dream”-Fullmetal Alchemist

….Oh.


Yeah.  “Oh.”  That quote from Fullmetal Alchemist has always been meaningful to me.  It hit me hard when I heard it, the same way it hit the protagonist of FMA.  I don’t want to dream if I want my dream to become real.  Because then it won’t be a fantasy.  It won’t be a dream then.  It will be REAL.

And I WANT it to be real.

Stop dreaming.  You’re done with that.  Kids dream.  Are you still a kid?  No?

Then stop.  We aren’t dreamers anymore.

Grow up.

 

Blogger Recognition Award

So I’ve been graciously nominated for the Blogger Recognition Award by Acire over at Scribe’s Canvas.  Her blog is amazing, you should seriously check it out here!

Here’s how it works:

  1. Write a post to show your award
  2. Give a brief story of how your blog started
  3. Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers
  4. Select 15 other bloggers for the award
  5. Make sure you tell those 15 bloggers that they’ve been nominated!

So let’s get started!


How my blog started

I began this blog right after I finished writing the first book of my fantasy series, The Golden Lands.  I was excited because I had been blogging about an even older series over at Montairyus, but this was a new and fresh idea, and I was excited to share it with the blogosphere.

Basically, I began this blog as a means of sharing my writing talents with others, especially through my book series, which is now called Elithius.

Advice to New Bloggers

Don’t stop writing.  If you want more followers, you have to write.

Don’t write about your personal endeavors too much.  Write about stuff that OTHER people can care about, not just your supportive family members!

I Nominate…

Well, first I have to go find some people 😉


Thanks again Acire, and thank all of YOU for the constant support you give me!

I love how much my blog has grown and how involved my community is!  You guys rock!!

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