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I’m not sure that “Writing Tips and Tricks” is exactly the right banner for this piece, but since I wasn’t sure where else to stick it… it’s just gonna have that one and we’re gonna roll with it. Anyway, hey guys! I wanted to touch on something that is an every day thing for any of us who write — whether it is your immediately family of your parents, siblings, or cousins… or whether it’s your husband/wife, or child. Your doggo or kitty, or reptilian friend…

Writing with family can be complicated. It’s not just about the fact that you have to navigate through activities that will eat up your writing time — it’s also about the fact that having a support system on that emotional level can be very important for you. I can’t talk from everyone’s perspective, but I can give a little peeksie into my life, and how I navigate being a wife, a mother and a friend while still getting my writing done! Maybe it will help you out, too!

First and foremost, I have a supportive partner. I’ve dated writers before, and while there was something lovely about that in the fact that we related to one another, I have actually found myself happier with someone who doesn’t write. Writing is my passion, and while Josh and I share quite a few passions in common, being able to have something that is my own is important. It’s part of my identity, and something that I can enjoy on my own. However, Josh is extremely supportive. That’s kinda my tip number one: when you have a partner, it’s so important that they’re supportive of your passion, even if it’s not a passion that they share in common with you.

I’ve been encouraged by him to get my writing done, even when I felt like I couldn’t do it. It’s just… it’s something that you can’t replace, and something that I think is so important for anyone who has a passion that they want to help blossom.

As a secondly important thing, I have this baby here — he takes a lot of my time away from me, and I know that it’s not that easy to function as a new mother and someone who also wants to be productive. I took my time getting back into writing; self care is what this second part is about. Make sure that you find your own flow. Make sure that you find out how much you can do, and how you can do it… but then do it. Don’t let yourself stop just because your life has changed. Don’t give up your passions just because you are a new parent. There’s still time. It’s just about finding the ability to fit them in around your new schedule. I figured out that schedule, and now I have time to write!
Honestly though, everything is about balance. Find a partner that is your balance – find time to write while taking care of your baby. Find time to balance your world ❤ It is what is really important about all of this. I’m going to  be writing a lot more on this subject, I think – I want to do a lot of touching on this and how I still end up doing things in my weekly  updates!
So, until then! Keep reading and writing, y’all!
Author Amanda McCormick

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Writing Prompt

Hey all! Here we are, jumping back into an attempted proper blogging schedule. With that comes writing prompts, delivered to you fresh off of the… wherever I find them. In this case, it’s a huge list that my husband found for me! Without any delay, here is our writing prompt for the week!

I have seen this prompt a few times, and I really do love it! I would love to see your reply as well! I’ll try to have mine up some time over the weekend! If you end up doing the prompt, just link back to my blog! When I post my response, I’ll feature yours as well! Let’s all get creative, guys!

Until then, keep reading and writing!

Author Amanda McCormick

Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page | Tumblr | Blog Masterpost | My Writing Group
Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Life and Writing

Hello, everyone! You haven’t heard from me since the end of NaNo (I won with around 112,000 words!), and that’s because I needed a break after all of that writing. Well, that and the fact that my little one has been majorly fussy for the past week. I wanted to go ahead though and let you guys know what the future of this blog was going to be, what with the baby, the new year, and everything else!

No worries! Of course! I’m actually going to try to get back onto a daily posting schedule, while maybe taking the weekends as a “could post, but might just nap” time. I will be featuring weekly “What I’m Reading/Author/Book spotlights” or Book reviews, if I’ve finished the novel. I’ll be doing weekly writing prompts again. I’ll also have up writing tips/writing with kiddos tips, more about books and reading, and my overall thoughts! I’m really excited to dive back into it! I’d also love to hear from you guys!

Have you written a book and you want to be featured on the blog? Just hit me up here, or send me an email – amandaleannemccormick@gmail.com! If you have any blog suggestions or any tips that you’d like for me to discuss, I’d love to hear about it. Part of what I adore so much with this blog is getting to interact with all of you! I can’t wait to dive back in to posting every day!

Until then!

Author Amanda McCormick

Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page | Tumblr | Blog Masterpost | My Writing Group
Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

NaNo Week 3 Update

Posted: November 28, 2017 in NaNoWriMo

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Hey all! Week Three of NaNo has come and gone, and it’s time for my update and tip! Man, NaNo has been crazy this year. My Writing Server has been booming and growing, and we’ve had plenty of crawls and activities to keep up motivated. That’s where I’m going to go ahead and grab a tip for you. I think that one of the most important things that you can do to be successful as a writer is to make sure that you have a writing group. Whether you have a group that you meet with locally, or you find yourself an online group, it’s so important to surround yourself with creative people.

It’s not just because you need an audience. They will encourage you when you feel like you can’t write. They will applaud you when you can — and they will be able to be there for you to bounce ideas with. I find it so important to have accountability buddies ❤ You’re going to feel like you need to do things, because you’re gonna be surrounded by people who understand how hard it is to write, and who will push you anyway. I’ve been much more successful with writing since I’ve started my server — it’s been going for years strong, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything, because the people there drive me each and every day to do better and to do more. Find a group that makes you feel the same way, because it’s so important that you do!

Anyway, for my NaNo update! Things have been going a bit slower than that first whirlwind week where I won, but… I kinda expected it to slow down? I’m still on track to hit 100k today though! (I’m currently at 98,000 and I know I’ll get 2,000 done today!) I’m really proud of myself though, because I wanted to win NaNo both as a rebel (working on multiple projects) and in a legitimate fashion (50k on one novel.) A few days ago, I hit 50k on my novel, so I’m a traditional and rebel winner. I feel like I deserve my winner shirt now. I was really afraid that I was going to lose this year, since I have my little baby boy… but I’ve managed. It just goes to show you that you can always find time to write, even if you feel like your schedule is too busy. You always have a few minutes here and a few minutes there.

If you want to make it happen, you will make it happen. There’s nothing that can hold you back from finding a bit of time every day to get some words down! I have faith in you, so don’t hold yourself back! You can do this! NaNo still have a week to go. If you’re behind, now is the time to put the pedal to the metal. If you’re behind, you can still catch up! You an still get so many words, because you still have so much time! Jump into some crawls, some sprints! Get there! You can do this!

NaNo Week 2 Update!

Posted: November 18, 2017 in Creative WRiting, NaNoWriMo

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Hello, everyone! So, I’m a little late with this update, but it’s time to give off my week two NaNo stats and drop in with a tip for you all! We’ll start with my week two first! I am the proud owner of 75,000 words! That’s right. I won in my first week, and this second week I’ve been kinda toddling along and just seeing what I can get done. We’re already into the third week (I do apologize for how late this is, but I’ve been caught up in writing and baby-watching)!

I have to say, this NaNo has gone smoother than I thought it would. I really believed that I’d have a lot of issues winning, what with the fact that I have a 4 month old to look after! None such the case, though. I think it’s all about determination and making sure that you have time, whether you feel like you do or not.

And that, my dears, is where my advice comes in. I know I’ve given you this before, but I’m gonna give it to you again. You can’t wait around for the perfect opportunity to write. You can’t just wait around for your muse to strike you, for that perfect and inspiring moment to hit. You can’t wait for the sun to align and your candles to be burning and the situation to be just right…

You can’t rely on the ‘muse’ as your guide. If you do that, you’re going to find yourself making fifty-thousand excuses as to why you couldn’t write today… you’ll find yourself making excuses as to why you couldn’t get your words done. Your muse wasn’t there, your inspiration was low. You didn’t feel like it. There were distractions…

I’m gonna give you the advice now: stop making excuses for yourself. Stop giving yourself an out as to why you didn’t get work done. The truth of the matter is, you don’t have to wait around for some glorious creature that you imagine your muse to be to come and touch you on the head with the stick of inspiration. You can write anyway. Yeah, it may be a little harder to get started. Yeah, it may not feel like the words are flowing like a trickling stream of gold from your fingertips and to the keyboard… but you’ll still get your words. The moment that you stop waiting for that perfect moment is when you can commit to getting your writing done. You can’t stop just because you don’t feel like it… you have to push forward, even when you don’t feel like it. That’s what makes the real difference to me between someone who really wants to write and someone who just likes the idea of being a writer.

I’m not saying you can’t get into a slump. Hell, we all have slumps. But you have to fight through it. You have to be willing to put the words on the paper even when the last thing that you wanna do is take up your pen. It’s hard. It’s messy… but in the end you’ll have something written. You’ll have words on the page and a beginning to a story — even if you don’t really like that beginning, and even if you end up trashing a lot of it, you still started. You still gave yourself a push and began writing. You don’t need a muse, you just need your own determination!

So, that’s my advice for today. I know that sometimes it isn’t necessairly something that everyone wants to hear, but I feel like that’s the way that good advice is: occasionally, it’s a hard truth. If you can seize that truth though and run with it, it’s just going to make things so much easier for you. I know this for a fact, because I was struggling with waiting for inspiration earlier… and then I realized if I waited for the oportune moment it was never going to come. Instead, I’ve been writing every chance I get; when my baby is napping, when he’s playing on his mat, when his Daddy is holding him. ❤ Seize the opportunity whenever you have it. Don’t give up, and just remember… you’re making a whole world that no one else coud ever imagine, that no one else could ever writer. You’re pretty amazing!

And if you’re behind (my bit of advice #2), it’s never too late to keep trying. Even if it feels like it is, just strive to hit your count. There’s a meter on NaNo that tells you how many words per day you need to write to win. Even if it’s 2,000 now instead of 1,667, you can do it! Don’t give up ❤ there are still a ton of days left in the month, and each day is a new opportunity to hit your goals!

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Hello all! I know that I have been a bit silent since my Halloween horror prompts, but it was with good reason! NaNoWriMo 2017 started on the first of the month, and I’ve been blowing through my words at an astounding rate. I’ll get more onto my update at the end of this blog! But for now, we’re going to go over the essential programs that I consider to be NaNo musts!

Scrivener: First and foremost is one of the most essential programs that I have, as far as my writing goes. Scrivener is an amazing software that allows you to create multiple documents, folders, binders, use split screen… basically, have the ability to corkboard your entire novel. I have an entire post on Scrivener, and there are dozens of wonderful youtube videos about it. I suggest and completely recommend that you check it out if you haven’t yet!

Google Docs: I write in multiple locations, so I’m not sure what I would do without google docs. It gives me the freedom to take my writing to multiple computers easily. I know I could use a thumb drive or even onedrive for that, but Googledocs makes it so much easier, because it autosaves, auto syncs, and there’s pretty much a no muss, no fuss attitude to go along with it. If you’re into organization and easy access, gdocs is for you.

4theWords: Is an amazing website that I partook of last year and am using again this year. It basically makes writing a game and gives you small, bite sized and achievable goals that make writing so much easier. I am of the personal opinion that breaking your words up into smaller goals that you can achieve and then get rewards for is one of the best ways to have high word count days. The website makes it basically a mini-game – you fight monsters with your word count, and in doing so you get loot from them. You can use the loot to complete quests, to gain items that allow you to build armor and weapons… it honestly makes the entire writing experience something fun and enjoyable that flies by and ends up being something that you look forward to doing every day so you can keep up your writing streaks. Aside from the game aspect, it also has a fantastic storage interface which allows you to sort your writing, put it into folders and binders… it’s all around pretty phenom and something else that I recommend. You can get a free month for signing up now, and if you win nano you get 50% off of the very affordable subscription!

Discord: I honestly don’t know how I could get through my writing at all without Discord. I have a writing server on there (My Writing Group) and it’s one of the most amazing things that I’ve ever created, as far as community goes. One of my favorite things about NaNo is being around people who are writing and knowing that there is someone there who can understand what an accomplishment it is to have a 1667 word day. With a writing server that functions year round, I am able to have that every single day. It’s not always as active as it is in November, but there are always a few people on to bounce ideas off of, to celebrate with, to enjoy the struggles and joys of writing with. I really don’t think I’d do half as well without my writing ground, because it’s an entire host of accountability buddies. There’s nothing better!

So, those are my tips and tricks for the day! Now, onward to the update! I am proud and pleased to say that my word count is currently at 51,000 words. That’s right guys! I won NaNo in the first week. It’s a funny story, actually… I was really pushing myself because I was afraid that I wasn’t going to be able to finish in time, due to the fact that I have a baby. It seems like that wasn’t the case, huh? Still, I have a lot of writing to get done to finish my first draft, so I’ll be participating in the writing for the rest of the month!
I’d love to hear how you guys are doing, as well as any writing programs/sites that are essentials!

Let me know! Until next time, guys, keep writing! We can do this! It’s just week two, so ahead or behind remember to keep your chin up. There’s always time to win!

Author Amanda McCormick

Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page | Tumblr | Blog Masterpost | My Writing Group
Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

horror-prompts

Day 28:

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Day 29:

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Day 30:

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Day 31:

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horror-prompts

Day 21:

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Day 22:

People in this neighborhood begin having freak accidents that involve normal appliances and machinery, such as blenders, weed whackers, and garage doors.

Day 23:

A young woman is impregnated by her handsome new boyfriend, who turns out to be something other than human.

Day 24:

An author’s fictional villain stalks him.

Day 25:

A mother’s young child may or may not be a changeling.

Day 26:

A child’s imaginary friend starts to cause real trouble.

Day 27:

When putting together a slide show for a wedding or funeral, someone notices that for decades, the same man, dressed in the same fashion, has been appearing in the background of photographs taken in public places.

Author Amanda McCormick

Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page | Tumblr | Blog Masterpost | My Writing Group
Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

horror-prompts

Day 16: 

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Day 17:

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Day 18:

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Day 19:

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Day 20:

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Author Amanda McCormick

Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page | Tumblr | Blog Masterpost | My Writing Group
Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

horror-prompts

Day 11:

A musician practices. When she finishes a piece, she hears someone clapping for her, although she lives alone.

Day 12:

Creating a hybrid of a human and this particular animal turns out to be a bad idea.

Day 13:

The Furies—the vengeance deities of classic mythology—are back in business again.

Day 14:

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Day 15:

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Author Amanda McCormick

Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page | Tumblr | Blog Masterpost | My Writing Group
Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com