I've got one session left in the private writer's conference of this weekend. It's gone really great so far! I should live in a world with just these people. They're so my kind. I seriously adore them. (Editor's Note: This private conference was the first of what would become Ch1Con.)
This also means that I just finished my session in which I taught about writing romantic subplots! And I'm going to give you an overview.
Romance: You Probably Need It
Romance is important in storytelling. Character relationships of all kinds are founded by some shade of love, which is the most beautiful and powerful feeling in existence, in my opinion. Love is necessary to character development, plot structure, and most of all, emotional impact. Positive interpersonal connections reveal the depths of your story. They're what readers connect to most!
This week I am feeling very in love with the Internet--and here's why.
1) Writing Conferences
Yes, indeed, with the Internet, writing conferences have become easier and more fun than ever! This weekend, I will be giving a lesson at a private conference with some of my closest writing friends through the wonders of video chat! I'm super excited, and I'll update you later with some selections from my talk.
Another online writing conference I will be attending is WriteOnCon, which is entirely virtual, focused on children's literature, and supremely awesome. It's right before I start college--like, RIGHT before, so mid-August.
2) Internet Surfing Tools
By this, I mean StumbleUpon, a website where you select interests and it picks websites all over the internet for you to look at. It's totally fun and addictive and a favorite of college students everywhere. I've found so much great stuff through this tool. See below:
First, I want to let you know that the #ChosenFourStory bonus material is all updated and completed as far as I am able to do without spoilers. This INCLUDES audio versions of chapters from the first book, along with two character profiles, some more information from the Factbook, a chapter list, a quiz, and an open Q+A session. (Editor's Note: This content is no longer available.)
Second, I'm posting to talk about my very most favorite books! Hopefully, most of you have read these.
The first book I'd like to talk about is The Giver by Lois Lowry. This book is the first of a trilogy, which is also fantastic, but it works great as a standalone too. It's an MG/YA dystopian sci-fi following twelve-year-old Jonah as he gets his adult job as the very unique Receiver of Memory. He will be the only person to have memories of what life was like before the Council removed all difference--the only one to know pain and love and color and music. His journey through the memories shows him terrible truths about his own society. I love The Giver because, first, the sameness that it begins with. The depictions of this society that Lowry writes are incredible. They fascinated me the first time I read it, and they still fascinate me now. The Ceremonies especially are well-written. Second, I love the moral questions The Giver raises, acting as dystopian fiction before dystopias were hot stuff. Jonah is an extremely relatable character as well. (5 stars for the first book, 4.83-star series average so far)
Because I might as well make this website worth something now that's it's up--here are my recommended online communities for writers!
For younger writers, I highly recommend the Scholastic Write It boards. This is the community that raised me as an author. I'm still very close friends with other alumni of the boards, which are heavily moderated for safety purposes by a very nice mod named Bronwen.
I'm currently in the Figment writing community. I'm not as invested in it as I was in Write It, but it's a good place for writers to network and post some of their work. However, it is biased towards shorter pieces, so poets and short story writers would do better here than novelists like myself. It's also unmoderated, although you can flag posts. I personally find the contests to be kind of bunk, but maybe they'll work for you.
Finally, there's National Novel Writing Month, which, besides being a community, is also a contest of sorts. NaNoWriMo is mainly a sponsored challenge to reach a word goal (usually 50,000) in the month of November. There are two websites, the adult one and the youth one. Both have vibrant communities, and either way, the challenge is something to be proud of. I've won NaNoWriMo three times now, and I do recommend it.
I did not anticipate going live this quickly--that's what I get for pushing random buttons! Well, the good(ish) news is that this website for #ChosenFourStory is up and running. It's a little early, considering the series is going through edits and will not be sent out to agents/publishers for some time, but I was testing out website designs and accidentally published it. *shrugs*
So... welcome to my blog! I'll be covering lots of random stuff: what's going on with my writing, tips on how to write novels, my own interests in pop culture and such, and a little about my personal life. Whatever you want to hear about, let me know! Posts will be coming here and there and everywhere.
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