Saturday, June 28, 2014

Sunday Story Snippet - Faith - 3

I can't explain how excited I am to share this weeks snippet for you. I spent a lot of time editing it yesterday; I'm so relieved that I finished it in time. I basically rewrote everything what I had already written, and I think it adds a lot to the remainder of the book and ties up some loose ends.

If you haven't read the previous snippets, here they are. I'd love for you to read them and comment if you like!

Faith: Part One
Faith: Part Two

Eek! I have no idea why I'm so excited for you all to read it... But I am :)

      Alynn stopped walking. All chatter from the villagers disappeared. Everything was silent. In a matter of seconds her life could change drastically. Was this the moment she had been dreading? Was this the time that she had begged God not to let happen? Still no one moved, and still no one talked. Tension and suspense were in the air; prayers were being lifted up from every mouth.
      A swoosh of air sounded in the sky. A stream of fire streaked down towards the village. Chaos was released in every home. Screams erupted, echoing across the whole village. People ran out of their houses as the dragons attacked, spurting fire onto the exposed roofs. Raiders entered the scene, mixing in with the horror that had already started.
      This was the moment.
      We weren’t even expecting raiders in the first place. Alynn’s legs refused to move. And now they’re attacking in the middle of the day. Glancing up to their house, she saw her father motioning for them, holding a small burlap sack in his hand. Enna grabbed her hand and yanked hard, forcing Alynn to move. Fire spurted up on the path beside them, devouring houses and trees. They were half-way up the hill when dragons attacked their house as their mom escaped just in time.
      “Mom! Dad!” Alynn stumbled over a root in the path, causing her to fall down. Her dad shouted something she couldn’t hear. The bag he was holding crashed beside her. Alynn scrambled to her feet, handing the bag to Enna and looking to her parents. 
      “Head into the forest.” Their father instructed, yelling over all the noise, “Keep the bag hidden. Do not show what’s inside to anyone. Guard it with your lives. We’ll meet you there.”                                                                                          
      Alynn wanted to protest, to disobey his words. What if this was the last time they saw each other? What if this would be the last time they were all together? All Alynn did was nod, and ran back down the hill with Enna. Sparks of tears pooled in the corners of her eyes and eventually ran down her face. There were too many doubts that cycled through her mind.
      Flames crackled. Earsplitting shrieks rang through the air. Utter despair and desperation could be heard with every scream and cry. Raiders were seen taking people away while loved ones could only stand by and watch. There was no way anyone could resist. There were just too many raiders and only so many villagers. A recognizable shout from behind drew their attention. A raider atop of a dragon stood confronting their parents.
      Not thinking, Enna immediately took action, running back up the hill to offer aid. Alynn clutched her dress tightly, preventing her from going any further. She shook her head back and forth with a worried expression.
      “We need to do what Dad said.” Alynn’s voice trembled. “What’s in this bag,” she motioned to the sack she was holding, “I believe it’s more valuable than we think. We need to get this out of sight.”
      The raider now had a sword pointed at their parents, gesturing for them to get on the dragon. Alynn whimpered and clasped her hand over her mouth. What will become of us? Her dad’s hand crept to his sword by his side, but the dragon shot a small spurt of fire on his arm. He fell to the ground, clutching his arm, pain was evident.
      “Dad!” Alynn gasped, her stomach flipping itself in circles. Enna whimpered, wrapping her arms around Alynn. He had always been there for them. He provided for the family; he cared about their safety and personal lives. He was the best father anyone could ask for.
      The raider roughly dragged their dad up by the arm, hauling him onto the dragon’s back. Alynn sobbed into her sister’s shoulder as her mom hesitatingly followed her husband. 
      Alynn stared blankly at the destroyed village, fear gripping her by its deadly grasp. Her mom met her gaze before the dragon took flight, and raised a finger to the sky. Though no words were spoken, Alynn knew what she was trying to tell her.
      Have faith in God.
      Alynn bobbed her head slightly, trying to see how she could at a moment like this. Why would God let this happen?
      “Alynn…” Enna’s voice quavered, “That raider is looking at us.”
      Alynn met the raider’s gaze. He was short and young, probably not much older than Enna. Wavy hair met his shoulders, and the symbol from the kingdom, Driscoll, on his armor glinted in the sunlight. That’s where the raiders were from. “Let’s get out of here.”
      Taking one last look at their parents, the sisters ran back down the remaining part of the hill. Heartbreak from the village overpowered the sunniness of that day. Faith was dwindling fast as people watched their joy get ripped away from them.
      “We’re almost to the forest, Alynn.” Enna’s quavering voice betrayed her weak try at optimism. “Almost to safety.”
      A flap of wings sounded as a dragon flew past the sisters, circling back to meet them. Alynn eyes grew wide. There it was, crouching in front of them. Its repulsive breath made Alynn feel faint as the wind sent ripples down the dragon’s dark scales that were the color of death itself. The dragon clamped his jaw and shook his head, saliva running out of his mouth through his deadly sharp teeth. Smoke puffed out of his nostrils, creating small dark clouds in the air, leaving behind a slight burning smell. His bloodshot eyes met Alynn’s. On top of the dragon was the same raider who had captured their parents.
      “How could you?” Enna screeched, her face scrunching up with sadness and anger. “How can you willingly destroy so many lives?”
      The raider twitched his jaw, pursing his lips together. Guilt and desperation shone in his eyes. He hesitated; then dug his heels into the dragon’s side.
      The dragon flicked its tail, stalking towards them. She felt Enna’s hand against hers. Lifting her skirts up from the ground, they sprinted under the dragon’s legs, dodging its spurts of fire. The earth thudded with every step the dragon took, trying to crush them with its massive feet.
      “Duck!” Alynn screamed. The dragon’s tail swooped over Enna, and then streaked towards Alynn. Fire. Screams. The dragon. She felt a thump on her head. A moment of blinding pain. Darkness. Alynn crumpled in a heap on the ground.

Well there you go :) Thank you so much to those who commented last week. It's a huge encouragement! Please keep in mind that even though I go through and edit it every week; this is still a first draft. I haven't finished the book yet, so there will be some major things I will change. (I'm assuming so at least) Anyway, I hope you enjoyed :)

- Katie

(Camp NaNoWriMo is in TWO DAYS!!!! CAN YOU BELIEVE IT? I am really excited :)

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Liebster Award!!!

*squeals excitedly*

We got nominated for another blogger award thanks to Athelas over at Red Lettering. Only I will be doing it this time. (Katie)

*Side Note* Liebster means 'dearest' in German. Brownie points to Athelas for figuring that out and letting us know :)

 11. Facts

1. I prefer fruit over vegetables. Blueberries and peaches are my favorite :)

2. I participated in ice skating for three years, quit that, started up gymnastics, did that for three years, and then quit that also. I'm currently not in any sports, unless you count the vigorous movements my hands do when they're writing.

3. Contrary to the rest of my family, I really don't care much for steak. Give me some pizza and French fries and I'll be good to go. :)

4. Every time I eat eggs (Scrambled, fried, hard/soft boiled) I have a stomachache afterwards. I'm not sure if it means I'm allergic, but it's very annoying.

5. I have blue eyes. (I couldn't think of anything else interesting to put down)

6. I'm very picky about my temperatures. I don't like being hot, and I don't like being cold.

7. My favorite superhero is Spiderman. I love the new remakes of them so far. I bawled my eyes out in the second one :(

8. Papa John's cheese pizza = awesomeness.

9. Even though puns can annoy some people... They never fail at cracking me up :)

10. When I was younger my sister and I shared a room and we'd pretend that our beds were a spaceship. Sometimes we'd open the window and blast our fans on high so we could enter "The Cold Zone." We were always freezing by morning. :)

11. I (we) have been blogging for a little more than two months now.

My Answers:

Why did you start blogging? Anna was supposed to create a blog for a school project and asked me if I wanted to do it with her. At the time I was already contemplating making one for myself, so it was a perfect opportunity.

Who are your favorite three fictional characters? That's a really hard yet really good question.
1. Jace from Resistance by Jaye L. Knight. He's so complex and mysterious; I can't wait to see how he develops throughout the rest of the series.
2. Halt from Ranger's Apprentice. He doesn't have very much personality, but he's so skilled at everything. I never thought I'd take a liking to gruffness :)
3. Pollyanna from Pollyanna. That was my favorite book when I was younger; I loved how positive she was about everything.

What is the most beautiful place you’ve ever been?

The Grand Canyon. It is so gorgeous.

If your home was going to burn to the ground and any people and animals were safe, what one thing would you grab?

Probably my computer; that's the only place where my novel is saved.

Do you prefer the sun or the moon?

Sun. I like to call myself a cat, for whenever there is a patch of sun in the house.... I'll be sitting there :)

Do you have a favorite Bible verse?

It's really hard to choose one... But I like Proverbs 16:24 "Pleasant words are a honeycomb. Sweet to the soul and healing to the bones." It reminds me to be kind to those around me, especially my family members.

Do you speak any second languages?

I'm working on learning German or Deutsch. I'd rather learn Elvish :)

What makes you cry in fiction? (Do you cry at fiction?)

Tragic deaths of characters that were important to the story. Don't you even dare torture me with that.

Who is your favorite historical figure?

I really don't have one... Sorry.

(Just as a random question…) Describe your floor.

My bedroom floor? White carpet that's not very soft, and has some one stain from.... erm... a stomach issue when I was little :)

What is the skill you’re the most proud of?

I suppose that I've come a long ways in my novel Faith. I am planning on finishing it by the end of July!!!

Bloggers I Tag:

1. Kiri Liz from Lianne Taimenlore
2. Brittney Johnson from Daughter of the King
3. Rcubed from Random Rants By Rcubed
4. His Princess from Growin' Up Country
5. Abrielle Lindsay from Indonesia Around Me
6. Elise from Entertaining Reads

All the other bloggers that I know of have done this award in the past week. I can only come up with six :(

Questions for my Tagged Bloggers:

What's your best memory? Why?
What book are you currently reading?
Would you rather bathe in a pool of ketchup or mustard?
How do you like to relax?
Favorite childhood toy?
What genre do you like to write?
What's the best writing advice you've ever heard?
Besides writing, what do you do in your free time?
What are your wall colors? (I want to do a random question like Athelas :)
Favorite Bible verse?
Why do you write?

Thanks for reading!

- Katie

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Wednesday Writings (Senses-Sight)-Anna

Hey everyone, I guess it's been awhile since you've seen a wednesday writing. But other than that here's week two of my Senses Series.  You can find week two here.

I will be doing practically the same thing as last time only adding adjectives for sight.  I will give an example for a simple sentence and then build onto that.  This time I will give you two examples since I skipped two weeks.

Here's the first example-

-          Kathryn watched a bird fly across the sky.

What kind of bird? What color was the sky? Was it in the evening or was it in the middle of the day?  Was it raining?

Here's what I put together after adding a few adjectives to describe the sentence.

-          Kathryn watched the bluebird fly across the colorful morning sky.

After missing two weeks I will do another example.

-          I watched the construction workers.

Think about how long they were there. What were they working on?

-          I watched the tired construction workers work on a new road.

If you have any suggestions for next weeks post leave it in the comments below.  I will be doing smell next.  Have a great day!


Sunday, June 22, 2014

Story Snippet- Cierra's Adventure Part 3

Hey, I'm back! Sorry about the past week, I've been busy trying to finish up my school.  But enough of that, here's part three of my story I've been writing.  You can find part two here. I hope you enjoy -Anna

“What do you mean you’re going to move?” Kacey roared.
“My dad’s boss is transferring him to California.” Cierra tried to explain.
“I don’t know what to say but have fun, I’ve always wanted to go to California.  You’re really lucky your dad wasn’t transferred to another country or something.”
“Don’t say that, moving to another country would be pretty cool.”  She pointed out.  “I’m just afraid I won’t make any new friends.”
“You’ll be fine, you’re the most social person I’ve ever met.” Kacey complimented.
“Thanks, that means a lot coming from a friend I won’t be seeing anymore.”
The girls went in for a long hug.  “I’ll surely miss you Cierra,” Kacey started to speak again when Cierra’s phone started to play its ringtone.
“Cierra, we need you home right now.”  Cierra could tell her mother was serious.
“Okay, I’ll be home in five minutes.” Cierra hung up the phone and looked over at Kacey.  “My mom wants me home, this is probably going to be the last time we see each other.”  Cierra stated sadly.
“It’s okay, it’s probably an emergency if she sounded that frantic.  We’ll have a long talk when you get moved in.”  Kacey smiled.
“I’d like that,” Cierra looked at the clock.  “I’m already running late, good bye Kacey.” 
“Bye!” Kacey yelled as she watched Cierra run down the street.

                                           t  t  t

“I’m home!” Cierra shouted as she entered the kitchen.
“We’re in the living room!” Cierra heard her mom.
“What was so urgent?” She asked.
“We’re moving in two weeks, start planning on how you’re packing up your room.” Cindy spoke excitedly.  
“Already?” She questioned.
“We already found and bought a house in southern California.”
“It’s only been a week since you told us about this.”  Cierra pointed out, “And you’ve already bought a house?”

Chapter 2- A New Life

“Cierra Prescott!”  Her name was announced; she walked up on stage and waved to the crowd.
“Hello, thank you for coming.  Isn’t it a beautiful summer day?”  Cierra smiled and looked across the field.  “I want to thank my family for being there when I needed them.  When I felt like giving up, my mom always told me to take a break and try it again.  And to my sister Merrily, you always cheered me up when I felt sad or angry.  And last of all I want to thank my ninth grade English teacher; he helped me through a really tough part of my schooling.  Thank you.” She smiled and as she walked off the stage she heard the crowd start clapping.
“Congratulations.” Her Aunt Meredith said as she neared her family.
“Thanks, I can’t believe its graduation already.” She said in bewilderment.
It had been three years since Cierra’s family moved to California.  Cierra is now eighteen years old and a high school graduate.   She and her family moved into a five bedroom modern home in the suburbs of San Diego.   Cierra had started going to church for the first time, and on her 18th birthday she became a Christian and is teaching her family about her life with Christ.  

Thanks for sticking around these few weeks we've been around. Leave a comment below and check out our other stuff.  See you next time!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Camp NaNoWriMo

I'm going to give you the link right away if you want to skip my ramblings and go sign up :)

It's a camp. Called... NaNoWr... How do you pronounce it? (I don't exactly have a clear idea; I have a feeling everyone pronounces it their own way. lol)

So it's called Camp NaNoWriMo which stands for: National Novel Writing Month. The official "writing" month is in November, this is just a camp that you can do in the summer months of April and July.

I've never done it before, but am going to do it in July. (obviously) To put it plainly, I am super excited. Here's some facts about the program.

1. It's completely free.
Unless you want to donate or buy some cool souvenirs... You won't have to pay a dime.

2. You can choose your goal.
Want to take the brave approach and try to accomplish a 50,000 word novel? That's the default with a little over 1,600 words a day. If that is too daunting for you, make up your own goal! I'm trying for 20,000. I think that'll bring me to the end of my novel :)

3. It has awesome stats.
I don't know about you, but I'm a stat person. It's interesting to see how many page views I got on our blog a certain day or which post was the most popular. For Camp NaNoWriMo, it'll tell you three things:
 1. The word count needed each day to reach your goal.
 2. Once you update your word count each day, it recalculates the needed words. So if you fall behind a day or two, the site will tell you how many more words you'll have to add in order to catch up.
 3. What your average word count for each day was.
There are some others... But if you want to know more you'll just have to sign up :)

4. You can go to camp in the comfort of your home.
I don't love camp, but yet I don't dislike it. It's one of those things which has it's ups and downs.
Bug bites. Sunburn. Swimmers ear. (I got that last time I went. Not a pleasant experience) Scratchy beds. Cramped living spaces.
There are some downsides.
But guess what? With Camp NaNoWriMo, you don't have to go anywhere. *cheers* Sit down at your computer each day in your air conditioned house, write furiously, update your word count on the handy dandy internet, and ta-da! That's all there is too it. (granted it's easier saying it than actually doing it...)

5. Be encouraged by friends.
You'll be assigned (or invited) to a "cabin" with 11 other people. You can encourage your cabin mates through the writing journey and keep each other accountable when they start falling behind. You'll even try to reach a goal together as a cabin with your combined word amounts :) It's different with a private cabin, which is what I will be in.

So, go sign up for camp! If you have any questions, comment them below. I have never done this before, so I can't promise that I'll be able to answer everything perfectly. I get all my information from their website which is the link at the top :)

And talking about writing... Since it's coming up in 11 days I believe; I won't be doing any more writing until July. I'm taking a bit of a break so I can plan out how I will want to finish it and get my head on the right track. So that's why you won't see any word improvement when we update our word counts on Saturday :)

Have an amazing rest of the week!

- Katie

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

My Portals into Adventure

My "portals" in this case, are these lovely things called: books. Currently, my reading list is filled up; I have so many books to read! Here are some that I have/will/currently read. (the grammer is mixed up with all those slashes. Please kindly ignore that :)

My backdrop turned out very... beachy for the pictures. I felt like decorating it up a bit more ;)

1. Heartless by Anne Elizabeth Stengl
Status: Currently reading. I'm really liking this book. There's some parts where things happen that I don't expect--sometimes not in the best ways. But, it's exciting nevertheless and I'm anxious to see how the story turns out. :)

2. Tales of the Goldstone Wood. Also by Anne Elizabeth Stengl, though one is still at the library :)
Status: Next on my to-read list. I hope the rest are good as the first one is so far! :)

3. Go Teen Writers by Stephanie Morill and Jill Williamson
Status: My next read after the series above. I've heard some good things about this book.

Series on left: Destiny Trilogy by Sarah Holman
Series on Right: Firmament by J. Grace Pennington
Status: I've already read these... But they're awesome so I'd like to read them again :)

5. RESISTANCE by Jaye L. Knight
Status: I've already read this... I don't know... Maybe three times? And it deserves another hundred more :)

Side note: Sorry for not posting the Monday Minute Challenge yesterday. I'll try to get that done later... But I'm babysitting today, Wednesday, and Thursday. All day. I'll do my best :)

What are you reading, or what's on your to-read list? Comment below; I'd love to hear about some new books!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Sunday Story Snippet - Faith - 2

Wow. Two weeks go by quickly.

It's time for the continuation of Faith! Ready to get back into the adventure? If you have not yet entered into the fantasy world of E'Lenor, HERE you can find the first snippet.

Please let me know what you think in the comment box below. I'm sharing for your enjoyment; it's fun for me to write :)

Alynn collapsed in her bed, exhausted and relieved. There had been no raiders that day. They were safe, at least for now. Alynn groaned, desperately wanting to fall asleep right then and there, but her mouth betrayed her, begging for a bit of moisture. She sighed, swinging her legs off the bed and tip-toeing her way downstairs.  The darkness around their small cottage reflected the late hour of the night. Alynn stopped. Hushed voices, her mom’s and dad’s, traveled towards her. She took a footstep towards the doorway, straining to hear what they were saying.
“Do you think he’s still alive?” That was her mom’s voice.
“I don’t know. To tell the truth, I haven’t thought much about him.” That was Dad.
“When was the last time you saw him?” There was her mom again.
Her dad let out a sigh. “I don’t know. At least twenty years or so. I always felt bad for him in a way,” his voice grew quieter, “People didn’t seem to like him much.
“Pity. He always seemed so nice when I knew him.”
“He was.” Her dad sounded sad. “He was until I received the stone. He grew cold and angry, and was so distant from everyone else. One day no one saw him anymore. It was like he had disappeared.”
Silence. Alynn’s heart thudded, feeling as if it would betray her secrecy. Guilt flashed through her—how could she? Eavesdrop on her parents? Her stomach squeezed, it’s so unlike myself to be this way.
Footsteps sounded towards the door; Alynn’s blood rushed from her face. Before her parents could appear in the doorway, she ran up the rest of steps, the floor creaking beneath her feet. Alynn pressed her back against the wall at the top of the stairs, hoping to blend in with the shadows. Her chest heaved with forced breaths, If only I was quick and nimble as Enna. Thankfully, her parents were oblivious to the huddled figure in the corner, and she stole silently back into her room.
Alynn sat on her bed, confused at all she was taking in. Stone? Who were her parents talking about? Was it someone important? Too tired to think any longer, she lay down on her bed and waited for sleep to overtake her. Finally, it did.


 Enna shook her sister violently, trying to wake the deep sleeper that her sister was. Alynn thrust her hands in the air, trying to make contact to push Enna away. Enna just moved and started up again on the other side. Alynn gave up and pulled the covers over her head.
“Alynn!” Enna’s voice was coated with impatience, “Get up. I want to talk to you.”
Alynn groaned and sat up. The sun’s morning rays shone in her eyes; Alynn squinted.
“What?” She said groggily.
“I want to know what you heard Mom and Dad say last night.”
Alynn’s eyes widened with suspicion, “How do you know about that?
“I heard you come up the stairs,” Enna replied, “and you were hiding in the corner like a condemned criminal. You were eavesdropping, weren’t you?” 
 “A little,” Alynn confessed, “I didn’t hear much. It sounds like an old family friend of theirs is missing."
“Huh," Enna looked intent for a moment, but then shrugged."Let’s go wash up for breakfast. Mom will be expecting us.”
The girls made their way down to the stream again, this time returning much quicker, and cleaner. They gathered around the table and sat down, bowing their heads for the prayer.
Lord, bless this food, bless our family, bless those around us. We thank you for all we have and pray that you will protect us from the evil around us.”
Amen,” A chorus of voices echoed his prayer and they started to eat. Scrambled eggs and biscuits were on the menu that morning. They ate quickly, and moved on to chores for that day. Chores consisted of cleaning around the house, washing dishes, feeding animals, taking care of the animals, exercising the horses, and other miscellaneous jobs.
Alynn had a lot to think about during chores that day. She thought about what she overheard last night, and worried about the raiders.
“Raiders.” Saying that word evoked shivers that snaked down her back, carrying chills with them.  The raiders never attacked during the day; at least, so she heard.  It was always in the night when you’re sleeping. You might be lying peacefully in your bed, dreaming, and the next moment there is a sword against your throat, and a raider at the end. Alynn shuddered and continued on feeding the chickens. She prayed that God would protect her family.
After lunch Alynn took a walk around the village taking in her surroundings. She saw Enna standing and chatting with a group of girls.
“Hi.” They all said to Alynn together.
“Hello,” Alynn answered politely, then turned to Enna, “I need you to help me with some of the chores.”
Turning away from Alynn, Enna said her goodbyes to her friends. She followed her sister on the small path leading to their house for a while before talking.
“Alynn?” Enna questioned.
“Alynn, I’m scared.” Enna admitted. “My friends have been telling some awful stories about the raidings in previous villages. All of them have their own ideas, but they share the same sense of havoc and devastation.
Alynn looked down into her sister’s blue eyes, not knowing about the fear hidden behind the always optimistic girl.
“Enna, it’ll be alright.” She reassured.
“You think so?”
“I know so.” Alynn drew her sister into a warm embrace, holding her tightly for a long time.


             “We’ll attack at your command.” A voice snarled.
              She looked at him and scoffed, “You better.”
              Her eyes scoured over the village, “You know who and what you are looking forward. Take the people who meet that description, but don’t be merciful to those who try to resist. If anything seems of value or of worth, take it.”
             The men nodded their heads.
             “Dragons, set fire to the houses.”
             She held her chin up, and narrowed her dark eyes that showed no mercy.
            “Burn it all."



Thursday, June 12, 2014

Dealing with Writer's Block

 My hands hung over the keyboard, aching to type something down. Something. Anything. I racked my brain for help, but no one answered my call. I was alone. I was stuck. I needed to get out. I tried another go at it; I urged my fingers to write a sentence, just even a word. They leaned in toward the keys, almost touching the square black tiles. They got closer... But then my fingers stopped. They hit an invisible force field. It was resisting against me from any further writing. 


Ahh. Good old writer's block.

I have gotten a few bad cases of it along with a lot of my other writer friends I know.

No matter how hard I try, there's no inspiration that comes when I need it most. Nada. Zilch. Null. Nothing. 
So how did I eventually climb out of that deep dark hole?

Here's four tips that helped me get back into writing after having my brain run out of thoughts.

1. Find Your Writing Time

When does your mind feel most awake? Are you more of an early bird, or a night owl? In between?

I'm a night owl. My mind flows with ideas after the sun goes down and I'm dressed in my cozy pajamas. I'm done with the day and can let my imagination take ahold of me. It is a way to let myself relax as I'm getting ready to head in for the night. 

During the day, however, I can hardly stay focused. There are people to talk to and places to see; how in the world can I let my writings run free? (See what I did there? Semi-unintentional rhyming) My mind constantly wanders without permission. Finish school... Email a friend... Oh look! A new text!... *stares off into oblivion while daydreaming*... I wonder what's for lunch... What's that on my ceiling?... Time to practice piano... PINTEREST... I'm hungry... 

I'm not saying that doesn't happen at night... But for some reason it happens way more often in the day. But, figure out what is best for you. It seriously helps inspiration strike.

2. Discover Inspiration 

If the inspiration won't come to you... Then go find it! *puts on explorer's hat and hiking boots* Even though Pinterest can be a huge distraction for me, it can also be a huge help for writing reasons. There are three things that Pinterest mainly helps me with. 
  - Characters -- There are tons of character pictures out there on Pinterest. I've found spitting images of three out of the four of my main characters. I print the images out and paste them over my computer on my wall. It helps to look at their face and try to envision what they'd say next. 

This is so true for me. Lol
 - Scene/images -- Random pictures can often strike inspiration also. Pinterest has a lot of these. An old beaten down bridge, a ominous forest, an evil castle, or remains of a battlefield. Either these pictures fit scenes I have already written, or inspire me to write new ones with the inspiration in mind. 
- Writing Quotes -- Sometimes I'm so desperate for inspiration, I look for inspirational writing pins. With these I also like to add to my little writing corner beside my characters. They often remind me how every word adds up to the finished product of your book.

3. Interact with Other Writers

When I first started writing, I felt like the only young writer that existed in the world. That's not true. In reality, there are tons of teen writers out there. There's one website where I met a lot of my Christian writer friends on: They provide lots of writing help and occasionally hold fun contests.
Find a friend that can keep you accountable.  My writer friends have kept me encouraged through the hard parts of writing, and have pushed me to keep chugging away when the track was broken.


I know this is a horrible tip. But seriously, how are you going to make any progress when you refuse to write from lack of, "inspiration." I love this quote on the right side >>>
It's so true. Every single word you write counts and adds to the finished product of your book. Describe what your characters are seeing, and let them speak their mind. Stay encouraged and happy writing!

- Katie

What helps you get out of the writer's block pit? Comment below!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Writing Wedesdays - Description

Anna is very busy and tied up with finishing school, so I'm going to take over her posts for the next week. (Or however long it takes her to finish.)

Welcome! *waves* Today I'm going to write a bit about description. To be honest, description is something I need to work on in my writing journey. It's hard to write and can be boring to read if the author goes on and on and on and on and on and.... Well, you get the point. A couple days ago, two of my author/blogger friends and I had a conversation about description. They had some great insights on this topic and I'll be discussing some ways you can improve your description and how it helps you.

1. Find a Balance

"Do I need more dialogue or description?"
"Which one is better?"
"What does the reader want?"

First of all, you don't have to get it perfect the first time. Some authors need to go over their drafts multiple times to get it to it's final state.
Every writer has their own style. Some go heavy on description; I tend to not do that. I get by with the bare minimum and only describe what's essential to that scene.
Then there's dialogue. I have a lot of that in my writings. Too much chatter is, well, too much chatter. (Unless your character is naturally very talkative. Then go for it! :)
Find a balance of both in your writing. It will work out the best then.

2. What Will Your Character Notice?

Yet another wonderful tip a fellow blogger pointed out to me. What will your character notice? Is he/she very observant, or does he/she not really care at all about their surroundings? Don't talk about the precise detail in a butterfly's wings if your character isn't even remotely interested in butterflies, let alone their patterns. Maybe your character is obsessed with accents, and notices the slight drawl of a southerner. Describe through your character's eyes.

3. Unnecessary Description

If there's something in the scene that is completely irrelevant to the story... You don't need to put in in there. Green lizard five feet away? Keep it five feet away, readers don't need to know about it. *shivers*

Thanks Bluebelle and Athelas for discussing this topic with me! You both provided some awesome helpful hints :)

Do you have any other pointers or thoughts on description? Comment below!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Where can I find the Monday Minute Challenges?

This is Katie :)

So on the side of our blog we have a schedule listed. Every week I post something entitled, "Monday Minute Challenges."

In case you were wondering, "Why isn't it showing up on their home page," it's because I created a special tab for it and will only be posting my entries there every week.
 I was rather proud of myself that I figured out how to add a red circle and insert this picture. ^_^

Click on the tab shown in the picture on your screen, and it will lead you there :)
Most of you have probably already figured out the deal with the challenges, but I wanted to post this anyway for those who may not be up to date with the blog's progress.  Make sure to comment and let me know how I did! :) 

Thanks for reading, until next time...

Katie :)

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Sunday Story Snippet- Cierra's Adventure Part 2

Hey everybody, Anna  here.  Sorry this post is a little late.  Here is part 2 of my story snippets :) You can find part one here.

As she was walking back up to the roof she heard a crash and ran to the kitchen, “What happened?”
“Be careful, I slipped on a puddle while cleaning the dishes and the whole towel full of dried plates and cups came with me.” Dad sighed.
“It could’ve been worse.” He reassured himself.
“Do you need any help cleaning up?” Cierra asked.
“No, you go do what you were doing before.  I can clean this up on my own.” He insisted.
“Okay, I won’t be coming down anymore. So, goodnight.” She grinned.
“Goodnight sweetheart.” He bent down and kissed her on the forehead.
      Cierra made her way up the stairs and back onto the roof to retrieve her boxed tablet.  She looked up, “Wow, the stars are beautiful.” She thought to herself.  I wish I could see them every night. Cierra made her way to her room, it was small but she didn’t need much.  The walls were a soft brown with big white polka dots scattered in different places.  Her bed was in the corner and her closet on the other side.  She walked over to her window and looked out; the streets were quiet.  Cierra changed into her nightclothes and got under the covers.  Thinking about what her teacher said before she had left school, her muscles relaxed and she rolled over for what she thought would be a good night of sleep. 
      Exhaustion hovered around her like vultures circling their prey; her eyes were heavy and droopy.  It had just turned to 3 o’clock when she finally fell asleep.

The next morning Cierra woke up to the smell of bacon and eggs.  She yawned; it had been a rough night for her, waking up off and on.  Cierra rolled over trying to get another hour of sleep when her mother knocked on the door.
“Are you awake? Breakfast is ready.” She announced into the empty-like room.
“I’ll be down in five minutes,” Cierra groaned.
“Okay, but your eggs will be cold,” Her mother blurted out.
“Fine, you win.” She got out of bed, “Make sure the boys don’t eat my bacon.”
      Her mother responded with an okay and a chuckle.
Cierra made her way down the stairs to the kitchen where her family was eating their breakfast. 
“Good morning sleepyhead,” Jordan teased.
“Jordan,” Mom glanced at him.
“No it’s okay Mom,” Cierra said as she yawned, “I had a bad night.”
“Couldn’t sleep?” Dad asked.
Cierra nodded, “I kept having different nightmares.”
“That’s a bummer.  Do you want orange juice or water?” Her mother asked.
“Orange juice, please.” She replied with a smile.
Cierra took her plate of food and sat down at the table next to her siblings and across from her parents.  When her mother sat down she asked Cierra, “Can I see your report card Cierra?”
Cierra sighed, “You won’t like it.”
Her mother reached over and grabbed it.  “Oh honey,” Mom frowned.
“I know, but before you say anything else Mr. Robertson talked to me after school and gave me some tips for next year.”
She looked over at her parents’ faces.
“Are you sure they’ll work? You know this can’t happen again.” Mom glanced at Dad as he questioned his thoughts.
“Trust me, they worked for him before.” She tried to get her parents to accept.
“Okay, let’s drop this conversation and finish our breakfast.  Merrily and the boys finished five minutes ago.”
Both Cierra and her mother nodded in agreement.
“And with that your mother and I have something else to share.” He announced.
The whole family shifted their eyes back onto him.  “I got a promotion.”
The kids congratulated him.  “Yay!  Daddy got a promotion!”  Merrily giggled.
The boys just sat there and clapped.
Cierra’s parents waited until they had finished, “There’s some bad news also, I’m in the process of getting transferred to our western branch in California.” Their father looked at the children’s jaws that had just dropped.
“What? Are you saying we’re going to move?” Cierra questioned.
“Kind of, we haven’t figured everything out.” Mom responded.  “If we were to move it would be this summer.”
Cierra got up and walked off to her room.  She knew there was no way out of moving.  Maybe it won’t be as bad I think, She told herself.  She had always dreamt of going to California, but not like this.  “I guess there’s new things I could try, like surfing and scuba diving.”  She tried to cheer herself up.  “I’ll have to tell Kacey, and that will not be fun.”