Chatting · Monthly Goals

June Goals

Well, we’re halfway through the year and it’s been a great six months of beating writers block and burnout back into the hell from whence they came with a very big stick. I tried to take some time off this month to rest, work on low-stakes side projects, and enjoy long chill chats with friends instead of constantly working, and I think it’s helped a lot. I’m still exhausted, but in a satisfied, “I’ve spent my time well” sort of way, and not the frantic “I’m running out of time” that I’m used to. I’m settled down at my internship, living alone for the first time in my life, and learning how to manage my free time like an actual adult. Weird stuff. Let’s see what I did with my first month of summer “break”!

Won by 2 – 7/10 Goals Completed

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Chatting

“The Edge of Infinity”

Is the expansion of our universe not a lofty enough calling for you? I stitch together spacetime at the edge of infinity and pry open the rifts in reality with the bloody edge of imagination itself. I pair particles into atoms and expand existence through eons of exhausting, exacting labor.

Aella
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Chatting

Announcements!

In honor of SEVERAL milestones that I’m hitting in and around this summer, I am combining all the excitement into a multi-part writing community event! I never ever ever would have imagined making it this far when I first joined this site and I cannot currently imagine my life without this wonderful community. You all have made my life so joyous and provided such a source of encouragement and I truly cannot express how deep my appreciation is for that ❤

So what are we celebrating?

  • This August marks my three-year anniversary of joining Tumblr, and my first adventures into posting my writing online
  • August also marks my two-year anniversary of starting this website
  • June or July (I forget) marks my one-year anniversary of starting my mailing list and informally publishing quarterly short stories
  • I recently hit 800 followers on Tumblr
  • And 100 followers on Instagram
  • This May was the first time I hit over 400 views in a month on my website
  • In case you haven’t noticed, I just completed a major website update and redesign which included a bunch of SEO and monetization stuff
  • Launching a new Pinterest with over 80 new pins I designed myself and plan to keep updated
  • Finishing the first round of beta reading for Runaways

I cannot truly believe it, but here are the statistics glaring at me from my computer screen at 12:27 am on a work night. SO! Here are the celebration events!

Draw This In Your Style Challenge:

The Rules:

Draw this picture in your own art style and send it to me through either asks, DMs, or at [email protected] Before July 31st. After that, I will choose a winner (and maybe some runner ups depending on how many submissions there are)! If you send it via email, please put “summer celebration” in the subject line so I know it isn’t spam!

The prize:

A fully rendered marker-illustration of a character of your choice with a background, and I will send the original copy of the art to you. If you want to participate, but aren’t comfortable giving out your address, let me know and we can work something else out.

Ask Game

These are games that really only work on Tumblr, due to the useful ask box feature, and they’re some of my favorite writeblr games so I’ve made one of my own for everyone to share and play! If you’re on tumblr, feel free to reblog it yourself to have fun answering the questions! Remember to send an ask to whoever you reblog it from so everyone has a chance to share.

Giveaway/Community Promotion

The Rules:

Send me a link to a piece of work that you’re proud of – it can be writing, art, crafts, music, whatever you want! I will share and comment on it over on my tumblr to spread it to a wider audience, and enter your name into a spreadsheet for a raffle. Multiple submissions = multiple reblogs and multiple entries. On July 31st, I will randomly select one person from the list to be the winner of the giveaway! Again, if you are sending this via email, please put “summer celebration” in the subject line and briefly describe the piece, so I know I’m not being sent links to viruses or malware. I will delete any submissions that do not take this courtesy for the safety of my computer.

The Prize:

A fully rendered portrait of a character of your choice, done in digital medium. Solid/gradient background, and I will depict them from roughly the waist-up.

Thank you so much again for all the support! I hope you have fun with these events! Until next time, thanks for reading, and happy writing!

Chatting · Runaways

Meet the Runaways Side Characters

If you’ve been subscribed to my mailing list for any amount of time, you will already be familiar with this colorful cast from my upcoming middle grade portal fantasy, Runaways! Since I’ve launched the newsletter, I’ve been sharing exclusive short stories that give each of these characters their own format in a new, slightly strange format. Eventually, I plan to compile these free, early releases into a companion collection and release them alongside the book itself. But until then, I wanted to share these brief introductions, so you can all get to know them as well!

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Chatting · Monthly Goals

May Goals

Hi, survived this month haha. For those of you who don’t follow my tumblr blog-turned-diary, May was absolutely insane. None of you want to hear about the comedy of errors that were my personal life, so suffice to say, I barely touched a document for the past several weeks. I’m still dealing with some burnout while I play catchup – a writer’s block of the “just thinking about tackling these projects sounds so exhausting I don’t even want to acknowledge them” variety. Also, many apologizes for this post coming late; I didn’t have time to finish it before leaving for work. Hopefully, a few days of serious rest and refilling my creative well through other means will help get me back on track, but until I can kick my catatonic brain back into action, let’s review what I salvaged of this month!

Won by 2.5 points: 5.5 out of 6 goals completed

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Storge · The Laoche Chronicles

Construction and Camaraderie

This is a 4101 word long excerpt from Storge Draft 2.5, in chapter 9. At this point in the story, Luca has earned a job with Acheran, displayed his magic in the arena, and practiced controlling his magic after his family goes into hiding in the Avian city. Meanwhile, Lyss, queen of the Atilan, has imposed city-wide curfews, manipulated the Avians into joining her side, and placed a ransom for Luca, while the Anarchists plot their next move. All the links go to those excerpts I’ve previously shared, if you want to catch up, but hopefully that summary should give you enough context for this snippet! If you aren’t familiar with the story, you should first check out the WIP page. I hope you enjoy reading!


Acheran solved his puzzle for the seventh time as the moon slid past the rings to mark the second half of the night. Only a lunatic should know how to tell the time by the slant of the beams through the ceiling door, but Acheran was all too familiar with this hour. He laid on his stomach so his wings formed a shadowy tent over him. Nimble fingers assembled the ball out of carved stone pieces and dropped it to the cushions in exasperation. In any other circumstance, the night would be a relief, a time when the world was quiet, and he had time to think and create in peace, briefly unrestrained from the demands of the day. He treasured the opportunity to fly in wide circles over the city and wander through the clouds as moonlight sliced through the moisture.

Stupid Atilan curfew.

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Chatting · Reading Recs

Reading Rec: Survival Kit for Writers Who Don’t Write Right

Overall Impression

5/5 – Even though I’m absolutely not the target audience of this book, I still learned a lot.

Summary

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Chatting · Writing Advice

How to Finish What You Start

This video by Thomas Frank inspired this blog post. I highly recommend checking it out if you have the time! It’s generalized to any creative process, but I want to offer resources and exercises for authors to do to help us finish our WIPs! Many of these are tried-and-true methods for beating writer’s block, so let me know if you’ve tried them before, and how they work for you!

The Problem: Paralysis of Choice

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Chatting · Monthly Goals

April Goals 2022

So I don’t know about you, but in my corner of the universe, time is hurtling ahead at a truly breakneck pace. Spring is tentatively here, after several late frosts, and getting my work done is less a task of time management, and more an exercise in staying focused long enough to not get lost outdoors. I’ve had quite the busy month, with course registration, housing selection for next school year, a bunch of STEM outreach events through the college, Easter travels, and backyard mad science experiments with my friends. It’s funny to see the giant gaps in my writer tracker that prove just how sporadic my habits actually are. Never let it be said that you have to write every day to be a productive writer! It’s about finding a rhythm that works around your other obligations.

Won by 2 points – 6/8 Goals

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Storge

After the Arena

This scene comes from Chapter 4 and shows the fallout from the attacks in chapter 2 from the villain’s subplots. Keenan is a unique side character who bridges the gap between the Atilan court and the ordinary Debilan that make up most of the city and poses a foil to Luca when they meet later in the book. This scene is his introduction! If you aren’t familiar with the story, you should first check out the WIP page. I hope you enjoy reading!


The guards stumbled on the battlefield as their targets vanished from behind their spears and attackers disappeared mid-blow. Keenan tripped over another guard and hit the ground with a grunt. On instinct, he pulled his shield over his head, but when no attack came, he cautiously lowered it again. The fallen soldier beside him groaned and pulled himself to his feet before extending an arm to his squad leader.

“Where’d they go?”

Keenan searched the area. The anarchists left glassy patches on the sandy floor of the arena where they stood. Scorch marks from their spells. What magic let them vanish without burning alive? No matter. They left. The fight ended. Now he had bigger problems to face. Spectators trampled each other to escape and piled against the locked gates. Dead bodies littered the two sections where the Atilan sat.

“It doesn’t matter! Get those doors open!”

The soldier armoed and ran. How many soldiers did he have left? Two unlocked the gates. The others recovered from the shock and made their way to him. At first glance, four fallen. Among the carnage stood Atala Lyss—one of the council and the highest-ranking lady among the Atilan and the city. Blood splashed her white dress, but whether it was hers or someone else’s, Keenan couldn’t tell.

“Captain!”

He spun to face her and made an armoe. “Are you injured?!”

“The others are. Remove the council to the palace infirmary. Where are the anarchists?”

“They’re not in the arena anymore. We don’t know how they escaped. A flash of magic and then-“

“Send someone for the investages so they can figure out what this means. What about the rogue fighter?”

“The one with wild magic? A Debilan boy, I think.”

“Where did he go?”

“I didn’t see. I was across the arena in spear formation with my squad. He probably escaped with the crowd after the anarchists disappeared and we opened the gates. I apologize, I thought it was for the best if- “

“No matter, you chose right. We will find him. Bring the injured Atilan to the temple for healing. They will receive treatment after the council. Later, we will send officials to identify the murdered Debilan.”

“Velis.” Keenan made his acknowledgment of her requests with another armoe and hurried to direct his squad.

Medics came with stretchers soon after, and he moved with them into the temple, where enormous statues of Daza and Nymbi glared down upon their worshipers.

What is this? Their eyes asked. A new sacrifice? We want more.

Continue reading “After the Arena”