Posted in Creative WRiting, Writing Challenge

My Writing Challenge

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Hey everyone! I decided to do a little challenge for my Discord Server, and it’s going to be posted here so you can all participate as well (though, feel free to clicky click here and join the server if you’d like). Anyway, I’ve talked to the members there quite a few times, and we frequently discuss the fact that having a social media presence is important if you plan on publishing. Whether it’s traditionally, in which case showing an agent that you already have a built-in audience is beneficial, or self-publishing… which, of course, having a built-in audience speaks for itself! Social media is important.

So, I decided that I would help the members of my group (and any of you who want to participate) by giving blog topics/prompts/etc to write on! So many people have trouble keeping up with a regular blog, so… I thought I’d make it a little easier by giving prompts and challenges for people to complete in order to help them jump-start their very own blog!

I’ll be pulling from multiple places: My mind, first of all. That means the occasional Currently, WIP, what are you reading, etc, blog!

https://www.creative-writing-now.com/short-story-ideas.html <– I’m also going to grab at least one of these every few days. I love writing prompts, and I think it’s a great way to showcase your talent.

https://randomwordgenerator.com/phrase.php <— I am also going to pull from here for more randomized prompts!

Hopefully, all of this will help anyone who is having trouble coming up with thoughts and topics to get a blog going. The most important thing is repetition, consistency, and building a habit! I’ll keep this running for as long as people keep asking me to! Until then (I should be starting this in June, so go ahead and drop a comment, Discord Messsage me, or email me if you want me to involve you as well!)

Author Amanda McCormick

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Posted in Creative WRiting, daily writing prompts, halloween, horror prompts, horror writing, nano prep, NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, Writing Challenge, writing prompt

October 24th Daily Writing Prompt – Conversation With Death

Hello, everyone! So, as promised, here is my first of quite a few posts today. I will get caught up before the night is over. This is the writing prompt from the 24th, you know, the one about having a conversation with death? I decided that I just HAD to stop working on Graveyard. I realized that it was very quickly escalating into yet another novel. Since I’m already working on two for November, I seriously can’t have another one beating around inside of my head.

Conversation With Death

Because I could not stop for Death –
He kindly stopped for me –
The Carriage held but just Ourselves –
And Immortality.

-Emily Dickinson

   Sometimes we run from the things that we fear the most. We run as hard and as fast as we can, and we never look back. Sometimes, though, we don’t run. We simply choose to turn our head the other way and pretend that we don’t see it. I don’t know which is worse, running from an attack… or never seeing it as it approaches you.
I, however, am one of the latter people. I knew I was sick. I’d known it for a long, long time. More than that, I knew that I wasn’t going to get any better. The doctors had told me so, in the kindest way possible. I’d really started to notice with going to the doctors every few weeks for the past year that they didn’t completely understand what nice meant. They had this idealized sense of compassion, but it was clinical. When even their clinical coolness had started to fade and I could see the pity in their eyes, I knew it was time to bail. I didn’t want them to tell me that my medication wasn’t going to work anymore. I didn’t want them to tell me that there were too many things wrong, and I was a time bomb just waiting to explode.
I wasn’t going to listen to any of it, and they simply couldn’t make me.
And so, I was playing the part of simply ignoring it. I turned my head to the fact that I was exhausted after a brief walk outside. I turned my head to the fact that my appetite was growing less and less with each passing day. I turned my head to the fact that there was a ticking death sentence in my brain that could bring me to death at any moment. I just wanted to have a good time.
It was during one of my excursions that it happened. I was breathless by the end of the walk and frustrated with the fact that I’d probably have to call a cab to take me home. Still, there was this little coffee shop just a block away that I really wanted to visit. I’d always had the dream of just hanging out there, sipping my coffee, writing a novel. Maybe doing some art. Something artistic, and something that the world would remember me for even when I was dead and gone.
It was crazy how relevant that dream really was now.
It was as I was crossing the street that I heard the sound of a car blaring its horn violently at me. My head snapped up and I felt a pain wrench in my gut. There was no way I could move in time – my body was too weak. The truck was going to hit me.
Suddenly, I felt strong hands wrap around my waist. My body jerked backward. For a moment, pain lanced through my head… but that was it. There was no violent impact of metal on bone, and there was no sensation of my body smashing against the pavement. There was just… warmth.
When I came back to my senses, I looked up. There was a man, a very tall man, holding me protectively against his chest. The smell of his leather trench coat was a sweet comfort, and I’d never felt anything as soothing as his embrace. His dark eyes twinkled as I looked up at him in awe.
“You’ve been ignoring me for so long, little Lyssa. You look at me now with such reverence, that I wonder if you’ve been wasting your time after all.” His voice was unlike anything that I’d ever heard. Sweet peace, that taste of beautiful exhaustion that sucks you down right before sleep. Silk and velvet wrapped into one cooed those words to me, and it took me a moment to even register what he’d said in the first place.
“W-what?” I couldn’t make sense of it. All that I could do was realize that this man and his strong arms brought me more comfort than I’d had in the past year… and I knew that it was completely illogical. Who let a strange guy bring them comfort when nothing else could? “Who are you?”
“Oh, Lyssa. You know who I am. I am who you’ve been running from.” His hand stroked gently along the side of my face, giving me chills as he brushed a few strands of hair from my eyes. “I am Death, and I think that it is finally time that you and I spoke.”


So, there that is. I already had a plan for what I wanted to do with this, you’ll be seeing part two in the October 25th prompt, which is to pick one of your favorite songs. I can’t wait to see what you guys do, and I can’t wait to get to my next prompt!

Until next time, keep reading and writing!
Author Amanda McCormick
Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page

Posted in 30 day creative writing challenge, Creative WRiting, fantasy, halloween writing prompts, horror, horror prompts, mermamaids, NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, Writing Challenge

October Writing Prompt 4 – The Fury of the Deep

Hey all! It’s time for the fourth prompt of the month for me! I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with… and this one is actually also getting me excited for NaNoWriMo. I feel like after I’m done with this month of prompts, I’m going to have a million options for NaNo!


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The Fury of the Deep

Their hypnotic songs turned men into slaves.  There have always been tales of fantasy when it came to the merfolk – no one realized the true terror that lurked behind the whimsical tales that mortal men tell. Those who have seen the merpeople for what they truly are have never come to the surface to tell the world the truth of their vicious nature.

The only truth to their legend is that of the siren – beautiful women who have lured ships to the depths of the ocean, have turned men to slaves. They have stolen more lives than anyone is aware… but no one thinks of this when they think of the mermaid. Instead they think of beautiful songs and Disney characters.

No one thinks of the vile creatures of the depths, whose full lips give way to sharp teeth. Their pale flesh is luminescent in the deep dark waters of the ocean; they draw in their prey with a beautiful voice, only to devour them once they have given in to the enchantment. They are magik, more ancient than anything that walks on the land.  When they lure humans to the depths, they sometimes keep them living and breathing through that magik, so that they can breed them like cattle. Atlantis, the lost city, was sunk to the depths from going to war with them. This tale has been lost to legend, just as the truth of the mermaids nature has changed over the years.

There is a problem, however. They have become malcontent with their domain of the ocean. Humans strive to explore further and further into the depths… and the merpeople are growing angry. A war is coming, and humanity will realize for the first time that the mythical creatures that they have fantasized about for so very long are not the innocent and kind beings that they have imagined. They are lethal, deadly, and the apex predator to humanity… for the simple fact that they are not simply bound to the ocean. They can take to the land, and they plan on doing so. They plan to conquer the world in a wash of blood and terror the likes of which no human has ever seen before.

I send this message as a warning from the depths of the ocean… I am the only living survivor that I know of… the only human who has managed to escape from the depths of the merpeople’s city. I have heard their plans, and I know that our race is doomed unless we prepare. Watch the oceans, watch the waves… watch the sea.

Death is coming for us all, and I do not know if we have the strength to survive the song of the sirens.

Let me know what you guys think! I can’t wait to see your responses! Until next time, keep reading and writing!

Author Amanda McCormick

Posted in 31 day writing challenge, Creative WRiting, halloween writing prompts, NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, Writing Challenge

October Horror Writing Prompts – Day 3 Prompt

Everyone is doing such a good job so far. I’ve seen a few different stories. I can actually say that it’s getting me excited for NaNoWriMo. Just getting a writing schedule down is pretty fun. How are you guys feeling about it so far? Also, any prompt suggestions? For now, here is the day three writing prompt!!!

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I hope everyone can figure out something fun for this prompt! I wanted to leave it really open this time to see what sparks in the imagination!

Happy writing!

Author Amanda McCormick

Posted in Book Ponderings, Book Review, Book Thoughts, Books, Booktube, Creative WRiting, Nano, NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, Writer, Writing, Writing Challenge, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

My First Vlog!

 

So, here is my first ever vlog for booktube/writing. Obviously my following vlogs are going to be done a little better. I’m experimenting with how to get it filmed properly, as well as with the sound. I’m probably going to order a microphone! Still, here we go. I went ahead and posted it up without editing it anymore because I knew if I kept tweaking, I was going to delete it eventually. Anyway :3 So, there it is. 

 

*Runs off like the Derpasaurus Rex that she is*

Posted in Book Ponderings, Book Review, Book Thoughts, Books, Creative WRiting, Nano, NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, Writer, Writing, Writing Advice, Writing Challenge, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

Weekly Update and Upcoming News!

So, I’m extremely excited for a few upcoming events that I’ll be hosting on my blog, but first let me get to telling you all about how my last week went.

I have to say that the schedule is perfect. With the hour that I spend in the morning getting the things that I don’t want to write out of the way, I am always hitting at least the 2k word mark. So, in a week I can write 10k words, easily. The best thing, however, is getting those 2k words out of the way really makes me feel energized, excited… I’ve got a lot of planning for my newest novel coming through… and a lot of editing of my old novel, which is really important for me to finish up. After all, if you don’t polish a story, how can you ever send it off to publishers!?

Seriously though, hitting daily word counts of 5,000+ easily is something that makes me happy, makes me smile… and pleases me all the more because I don’t feel burnt out with it. I think that finding a structure, a rhythm to your writing, something that makes you feel good is the most important thing that you can do! 

As for some comment highlights, here’s what some other people do for their writing schedule/times!

Frannie says: For me I write whenever I have the time during my day but I feel like I’m more creative in the morning but now that I have more than 4 projects I have to make time for each which is hard but doable.

I can completely agree with what she’s saying here – a lot of people have specific times during the day that they feel more creative. It’s why I like to write down the times that I write, when I write the most. It shows me a pattern, so in a few months… maybe I can adjust my schedule to be even more effective!

Kate says: I write in the evening, I find that is the best time for me to remove myself from everything, probably because after 5pm nothing is open and I have no excuse not to be sitting in front of my computer. I get into the swing of things by reading for about an hour before I start writing. It lets my mind get into the creative phase.

I responded to her by saying that reading can really put me into the mood as well.  A lot of times, if I’m really not feeling writing, sitting down for an hour with my favorite author reminds me of what inspired me in the first place!

 

So yeah, the schedule is working out really well… and I know that I’ll be able to give you guys more thoughts and opinions of it the longer that I go! Of course, come November, I’m going to have to schedule in some extra time for NaNoWriMo!!! (My husband will never see me, he’ll be so sad.)

 

Anyway! On some awesome news, I have multiple Author Interviews set up for the next few books that I read. Please stay tuned to the blog to see some of your favorite writers answering questions, giving thoughts, advice, etc! (If you would like to have a guest spot on my blog, please send me an email to amandaleannemccormick@gmail.com, and we can discuss it!)

So, those are my updates, and I’m really excited to be able to tell you what’s happened next week as well! 

 

Until next time guys, keep reading and writing!

Author Amanda McCormick (Find me HERE on Twitter for updates throughout the day) 

 

Posted in Book Ponderings, Book Review, Book Thoughts, Books, Creative WRiting, Writer, Writing, Writing Advice, Writing Challenge, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

BookInLaws and Updates!

First of all, please follow my blog BookInLaws, in which my sister-in-law and I read, discuss, review and enjoy books! I’d love to have you all as followers over there as well!

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Secondly, I’ll be doing the blog for the update of my writing schedule tonight! I actually needed a little time over the Holiday, because we had a lot of family things going on! Anyway, I can’t wait to do that blog, and I can’t wait to see you over on BookInLaws. As a little side-note and question… what do you guys think about vlogging? Do you do it? Do you like watching? I’d love to see your opinions below! Feel free to self promo!

Posted in Book Review, Creative WRiting, Nano, NaNoWriMo, Writer, Writing, Writing Advice, Writing Challenge, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

Another Schedule Update!

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So, as you know, I put myself on a Strict Writing Schedule in an attempt to get some structure in my writing life. I’m on Day Three of trying it out… and honestly, I couldn’t be more pleased with the results. Though I don’t always start as early as I originally intended, I’m still getting in the hours that I’ve promised myself.

On Monday, while getting into the swing of things, I wrote 5,117 words. My method of getting the things that I dread out of the way first is really paying off, because it paves the way for me to be creative for the rest of the day.

Yesterday, even though I got a late start, I wrote 5,826 words.

Wow… it’s shocking right? I’m getting more words in than I thought possible, and it’s all because I’ve put myself into a time frame so that I can effectively work on everything that I need to work on, as opposed to getting lost and confused trying to do 20 things at once. I know that most writers end up having a million and one projects on their plate in any given moment. A schedule like this can really help you to sort things out. Better still, I’ve gotten two chapters of my novel edited and ready to actually allow people to read! As something I’ve been avoiding like the plague since November of last year… this is pretty amazing!

Today, even though I woke up late, I have already completely my 2,000 words a day goal, and am still writing strong. 

I wanted to let you guys in on a little tip – the stuff that I dread in the morning? The stuff that I literally HAVE to get done? It’s some commissions, and I do exactly 1,000 words a day on them. By the end of the week, I will have 5,000 words to turn in to each of the people who commissions the stories. I get through the words in a blink and don’t have to worry about it. I really do suggest that if you have something you dread, you get it out of the way first. It’s cleansing, and it makes you feel like you’re fresh and rejuvenated when you can finally turn to your personal writing. Leaving yourself with a cloud of dread hanging over your head may seem like a good idea at the time (procrastinators unite tomorrow!), but it really is simply some bad mojo. Get it out of the way, get it done. You’ll thank me later!

So, yeah. The new schedule is coming along wonderfully. I’ll give you another update on Friday, along with some featured commentary from you all! Other than that, I have a review coming up soon for the novel Doon! I can’t wait to share my thoughts with you all! 

How is your writing going? How are your schedules? Anything that you’d like to see me blog about? Feedback, comments, witty conversation… all of it is appreciated!

Until next time, keep reading and writing!

Author Amanda McCormick (Follow me HERE on Twitter for updates and conversation throughout the day!)

Posted in Creative WRiting, Nano, NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, Pep Talk, Writer, Writing, Writing Advice, Writing Challenge, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

A New Writing Schedule, Day One Progress

All right, so I got a little bit of a later start into today’s writing… but I am trying to keep the exact schedule that I was talking about prior, and so far, so good! Like I said, I started a little late, so I’m not finished like I would normally be. However, let me give you an update of what I have done! 

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I got myself completely organized, got my Scrivener document prepped for the new writing schedule, etc – as well as redoing my calendar and mirror sticky notes (oh yeah, I do those things). And so far today, I have written 5,000 words! I started at 1pm instead of the 9am that I’d intended. I wrote for 2 hours, from 1pm until 3pm to complete that word count. The idea of spending that hour to begin with, getting rid of the things that I dread? Really great idea! 

I did do a little personal writing, but I’m not counting it towards word goal because it was in a notebook. After that, I took a bit and did the dishes and made myself something to eat (read yogurt and tea. Shhh.)

Finally, because it was on my schedule, I did something that I’ve been avoiding with a vengeance since November; I sat down and properly did edits on the Prologue to my novel Cerulean Darkness! 

So… altogether, 5000+ 6000 if you count the personal writing in notebook) words, chapter edit, good blog. I’d say that was a successful day! I’m going to write another 1,000 words after signing off of here. Honestly, this new organization and schedule feels like something that’s going to work! It’s structure, it’s meeting goals one at a time… and it’s great for me.

 

What about you guys? What works for you!? I’m still going to do a blog (probably Monday) featuring some of what you guys say as feedback! Let me know!

 

Until next time, keep reading and writing!

Author Amanda McCormick (Follow me on Twitter to keep up with me throughout the day!)

Posted in Creative WRiting, Nano, NaNoWriMo, Pep Talk, Writer, Writing, Writing Advice, Writing Challenge, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

A (hopefully) proper writing schedule.

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So, I’ve been sick this past week and a little bit of the week before. Needless to say, you shall not get your updates for my words written/read. I only counted sheep. However, I have been thinking about a schedule that I would like to have for my writing. I know I’ve touched on this subject before, but I think I have something really set in stone that should help me to get myself organized and properly working! 

I want to wake up at 8am every day (Goodness, gracious, is she serious?) so that I can spend an hour simply laying around, getting what I need to get done, done (housework, making lunches for the hubby, coffee, etc).

I would like to start writing by either 9am or 10. My preference will be to spend an hour at the beginning of each day getting the things that I really, really dread out of the way.

Once I can do that, I will be free and clear to spend the next hour writing on anything personal that I would like – my novels, etc.

After that, I think that two hours spend on writing for my work will suffice, because I should be able to pull between 3-6k words in that time. Following this, an hour spent editing my current novel that I am seeking to get published. 

After that, I can either call it a day, or keep working on whatever strikes my inspiration. I think that this is a good little work schedule to follow, however. Five hours which makes sure that I get everything that I need to get complete, completed… and all before the hubby gets home from work! It should also leave me with more time to read/blog guilt free (because I do like to spend at least an hour a day on my social media networks.)

 

What do you guys think? Do you have writing structure? Do you simply go by the seat of your pants? How do you tackle a day of work? I’d LOVE to hear from you – maybe the comments that I find most interesting can be little gust spots/links to your blog in my next blog! 

 

Until next time, keep reading and writing!

Author Amanda McCormick