Posted in General

The Victor Ehindero Award

This is a long overdue post and I’m so sorry for leaving it for so long! However, getting right into it, a massive thank you to the very lovely Obort for nominating me for the Victor Ehindero Award. If you haven’t yet, you absolutely need to go look at her blog The Sublime Ink. Her writing is so powerful and resonates for hours after reading it.

The Answers

  • Dream Job?

Actually, I’ve got two. The first is that I would love to be a full-time writer comfortably living off my writing. The second however, is to own and manage my own bookstore or cafe.

  • Where would you go for vacation?

Italy! I’ve wanted to go for years.

  • What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?

My long-hair cat won’t let me out of bed until she’s cuddled me sufficiently, so petting her is the first thing. After that it’s getting coffee.

  • Hobbies?

Art and graphic design (both of which I want to improve in). Following those, I dabble a little in jewelry making.

  • 3 words that best describe you?

Stubborn. Intelligent. Creative.

  • Strawberry, Chocolate or Vanilla?

Strawberry ice cream, chocolate cake, vanilla frosting.

The Nominees

Marina Sofia of findingtimetowrite

Ivy of Ivy’s Well Used Library Card.

Both the Alchemist himself and Chairman Meow of The Alchemist’s Studio.

The Rules

  1. Thank whoever nominated you!
  2. Make a post of the award with the logo.
  3. Answer the questions.
  4. Post the rules.
  5. Nominate someone else (the more the better!) Don’t forget to notify your nominees.
  6. Post 5-10 questions.

The Questions

  1. What’s your favorite season?
  2. What one thing do you want to learn?
  3. How many pets do you have? (Bonus: include pictures!)
  4. What is your biggest pet peeve?
  5. What’s your most treasured possession?

Check out the above blogs and don’t forget to visit The Sublime Ink as well!

Posted in blogging

Creating Blog Ideas

If you’ve thought about blogging at all, one of the big questions you might have is where you’ll get ideas for it all. You can only post so many times on the same things before you run out of ideas, right?

The good news is that while you might have a limited number of ideas, there are easy ways to find new ideas, and to help make your current ideas fit newer posts.

Expand. If you have a general idea—such as character development, or plotting for a particular genre—consider expanding on that general idea and getting into details and specific aspects of it. Do you want to discuss the exposition, or the climax? Perhaps you want to discuss some common plot twists to your genre. Think to how character development impacts their arc, or where to start developing characters. Look at your general ideas and make some notes. What are more topics you can expand on?

Series. It’s much easier to keep posting regularly if you have a series you can work from. This might be something like ten great recipes with potatoes, or historical accountings of metalwork from medieval times up to modern usage. If you work better with a plan, this is a great option! You can break each topic down onto a particular area you want to cover and plot them out over time. If you have a large topic with a lot to cover, you can also use this topic as a ‘filler’ when you don’t have time to write an in depth post on something else but want to maintain consistency.

Free Write. If you’re absolutely out of ideas, set a timer for ten minutes or so, pick a topic and splash some words down. Don’t worry if they come out with any sort of cohesiveness, you’re not doing anything more than spewing words out to get your thoughts turning. Once the timer is done, set it aside for a bit, maybe go edit another post or play with a page you need to update. Come back to it in an hour and see what sort of gems are hidden in your free write. Did you find a connection between two subjects you didn’t expect? Perhaps you can see a good base of a post.

Keep Tabs. If you notice a topic is trending—i.e. it’s cropping up on multiple other blogs or keeps recurring in the news—it’s not a bad idea to write up a post on your thoughts on it. Even if you never share that particular post, it can help you find new ideas by giving you a place to write down your questions. Those questions can be researched later, and a more informative post can be shared on the answer to that particular question.

Posted in blogging, General

April Recap

I think it’s fair to say that April has been a month full of stress and worry. COVID-19 continues to be a very real threat.  I hope you all are safe at home. If you’re one of the essential workers helping to keep everything running: thank you. Thank you to the firefighters, the nurses, the doctors, the police and the sheriffs helping protect and combat this virus directly. Thank you to the delivery drivers, grocery clerks, farmworkers, and sanitation workers helping our families and first responders survive this crisis.

While COVID is affecting daily life heavily, there is still some progress to be noted about the month. Here at least, numbers have begun to plateau. Although it’s likely the situation won’t resolve for months at the least, the fact that there is some positive change is at least a sign that we can and will get a handle on the situation.

Moving onto other news, I’m really pleased with how my personal challenge went this month. I had quite a few rough days where I didn’t get much writing done. If you want a day-by-day breakdown, you can check out the 30 Day Shorts Part I,Part II, Part III and Part IV. Below you’ll find the last few days of the April Challenge.

I actually really enjoyed having a challenge and I wish I had another one to do. I might see about finding another, perhaps for July.

Day 26
Two more flash-pieces done, the first titled ‘Problem Solver’ and the second being ‘Bus Tickets’. I had more ideas but unfortunately didn’t get a chance to start on any of them.

Day 27
Worked on ideas from yesterday. Finished up the selection of pieces with ‘Recruiter’ and ‘Technomancer’. I’ve actually gotten caught up somehow and am sitting on twenty-seven pieces.

Day 28
One more short, this one titled ‘She Came Through’. Ended up using the Day 27 prompts on accident.

Day 29
Ended up scrambling to get laundry done and dried yesterday since my dryer has broken. Nothing short written.

Day 30
Last day of the challenge! I ended up not working on any short stories today, meaning I finished the month out with a total of twenty-eight shorts. All things considered, even though it technically means I didn’t succeed at the challenge, I’m happy with what I ended up with.

How was your April?

Posted in blogging

February Recap

Where January crawled by, February seems to have gone in a blink. That might have something to do with the fact that there’s been a huge amount going on outside of writing.

I mentioned last month I was looking at having to get a new computer, and it ended up happening sooner than expected. My poor keyboard finally gave out, with both my n key becoming harder to use and the spacebar actually breaking. I’ve now got a new laptop to work from and will be recycling the old one once I’ve completely wiped all my files from it.

Although I’d planned to work on a rewrite for this month, that ended up largely falling to the side. As I started to dig into the story, I found more problems with the setting that were promising conflict but not delivering. As a result, my total word count for the month came in just over thirty-thousand.

I haven’t quite decided what I’m working on for next month but I’m inclined to return to some of my shorter works. I think a break from the long form might be a good idea.

How was your February?

Posted in blogging, General

Setting Goals for 2020

It’s startling to realize we’re almost at the end of the year, and not just the year but the end of an entire decade. Looking back on 2019, it’s been a rough year in places, but other places have a much different story to tell.

To set up my goals for the next year, I’m taking a look back at what I accomplished this year, no matter how small.

2019 Recap

142 Posts here on the Written Vixen

Completed 1 project (Crimson and Gold) which will launch in January–exciting!

6 novellas in various stages.

My biggest struggle overall has been adapting to the massive changes in my schedule and finding a better balance on time.

Two of the places that took the biggest hit were my reading and my art. I’ve had a few months where I didn’t read any books, and the additional things on my schedule have made it hard to find time to work on any big art pieces consistently.

2020 Goals

Ideally next year I’d like to get two stories published. This should be easy as Crimson and Gold launches in January and I have plenty of material to polish up and shop around.

As a stretch goal, I again next year want to try and finish a complete novel.

I’m looking forward to 2020. Here’s to happy holidays and a brilliant next year.