Tool Box: Android Apps

There are two apps that I have found to be very useful, if not essentiel to my writing process, and both of them are free! (But unfortunately only available for Android phones. If you know of similar apps for ios, please share them in the comments!)

The first is one I have mentioned before on my blog, and the fact that I’m bringing it up will hopefully show how much I love it. The Writeometer. This app allows you to not only track your word count, but it keeps record of it by sessions, organized by day, so you can always look back and see all of the details of each writing session.

It will also help you set a daily word count goal, depending on how many words you want the finished project to be, combined with when you want to be finished by. You can also set alarms to remind you to write!

Not only that, but it comes with a timer, which locks down your phone until the session is complete, at which time you can enter how many words you wrote to update your word count. One of my favorite things about this time, is if you try to exit it (which you can in an emergency), it will give you a little inspirational (or guilt-trip) quote to encourage you to not give up!

The final amazing part of Writeometer is the reward system! For every session that you complete, you earn guava fruit, which you can spend on rewards, which you also set. Some of my rewards (or “Treats” as they are called) include:Read More »

Talking To Myself

I recently came across a quote by the late Terry Pratchett that has really given me perspective for writing:

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Although I have always been in the “don’t rewrite anything until you finish!” camp, this really gave me some perspective on why this method is helpful (beyond ‘so you actually get through the whole story’).

I love this idea of telling myself the story.

Lately, I have been motivating myself by trying to get excited about my novel, and not just the overall concept or individual characters, but individual moments. I’m currently writing a scene where Hart tracks down a printer who has been spreading heresy, and before I write and as I write, I try to keep in mind the exciting things about the scene:

A new character, Master Hairan, to meet and discover, who has a past before this moment that effects his decisions and how others react to him.
A new invention, the printing press, to develop – in this world, what would it look like? How would it work? – and to be inspired by the trevithicks invented in “The Keeper” and continue in that vein of industrial revolution.
A new location, Bywell, to create – what makes this place different? what can this place teach us about Dorslien and Eviryia? – and explore with my characters.
A chance to play more with some minor characters, Vivica and Xandar, and develop them even further into real people and not simply warrior accessorize.
A set up for a big reveal: this scene and these characters are crucial to set up a huge revelation for Hart and the reader, that will not only advance the story but also grip at the reader’s heartstrings.

The more I think about the scene, and what I can do with it, and what makes it important, and what makes it exciting, the more I want to write it! At the core, this scene could be classified as ‘boring’ or an uninteresting necessity for the plot to continue, but if I think of it in those terms, the scene will read that way: boring, uninteresting, unimportant. But it’s not! I have discover for myself, and therefore for my reader, what makes this scene – and every scene – exciting!

Now I’m going to go finish writing it. Because it’s an important scene after all.

Here are some more of my favorite Terry Pratchett quotes to leave you with:Read More »

Pinterest: My Partner in Creativity

UPDATE: Many of these boards have now been split to include sub-categories.

I have mentioned Pinterest before, but I thought I might explain a little bit more about my boards, how I used them, and why I find Pinterest oh-so-helpful as an author.

I have four main boards for inspiration, motivation, guidance, and plotting, all rolled into different categories.

More Than Words is my source for articles, worksheets, and references. All of my Neil Gaiman quotes also get pinned here. I don’t use this resource as much as I should, but it is a wonderful treasure chest of information. I always get new ideas and feel motivated towards better story telling after diving into something pinned on this board. It is also very helpful when I am working out the details of a plot or character, because the articles hear give me so many good ideas and points to consider. I haven’t read all of them, but they are always good ways to procrastinate on writing and feel motivated once I finish reading.Read More »