Moving Out!

Hello everyone!

Sorry for the static these past few days, life has been all kinds of cray cray for all three of us Wordsmiths. But, you know us, we always come back one way or another.

However.

I am here with a tiny update for y’all.

In the midst of all the life drama and the writing, we have all decided to have our own little separate blogs outside of this one. But fear not! The Wordsmiths are not going away! This blog is still gonna be up. It will just be…on hiatus, I suppose? Until we all figure out exactly what we want from our blogs and posts, if that makes sense.

We are gonna have our own main/personal blogs and will keep this as our mutual side-blog.

In the meantime, do consider following us at the new blogs we are setting up!

There’s so many of you here already, and we do not want to miss you!

Harris’s main blog

Thorn’s main blog

Gee’s main blog

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Quarter Goals: Why & How

September marks a new start for many people, a habit that’s leftover from our school years. I’m still in university and so that’s twice as true for me. This year though, I thought I’d do something different and set myself some goals for the next three months and see what I can actually achieve (and what I won’t).

Why set yourself some quarter goals though?

  1. Goals VS Resolutions:
    It is easier to follow through with short-term plans and goals, than it is with yearly resolutions.
  2. Create a Habit: 
    Setting Goals every quarter, and checking every month to see what you’ve achieved and what you need to pay more attention to during the month, is a way of creating a habit and setting your mind up for productivity.
  3. Planning ahead of time:
    Knowing what you want to achieve in the coming months, makes it easier to know what you want to do and plan accordingly.

How do you go about setting those goals though?

  1. Overachiever: 
    It’s good to know what you can aim for and to push yourself a little. To aim for a bit more than you know you can handle. Even if you don’t get 100% of your goals, it’s always better to try a little harder and aim a little higher.
  2. Don’t overestimate yourself:
    On the other hand though, you should keep in mind not to overload your months. Be reasonable in your goals. It’s alright to push yourself, but don’t put so many goals for yourself that it is impossible to even get half of them done.
  3. There is a time and place for everything:
    Don’t assign things on months you know you have other things going on. Don’t put a difficult goal on a month where you have exams or a difficult task at work. Don’t arrange for the bulk of your novel’s edits to happen in November, when you know you want to take part in Nanowrimo. I’m looking at you future self.

What goals are you going to set up for yourself? What are you doing to stay more productive? 🙂

~ Harris

 

M. S. Harris and the blog she failed to name.

Hello people!

How have you been in the glorious land of internet? And wherever you happen to be? The greek summer is going on strong and it doesn’t seem to want to let go just yet. The last few days, it had been a little windy, at least and that cooled down things considerably… wait what am I doing? Am I talking about the weather? This is starting to sound like a bad date and this ain’t that kind of blog.

So, my dearests, on to important things!

I have decided to use September as a starting point to get more things done. I’ve been enjoying using a bullet journal throughout the summer and so, I went an invested in a moleskine. Yes. Don’t judge me. I got the dotted one (cause that’s the one everyone suggests is best. And I agree) but I got it on the largest size I believe they have. Hardcover. Black. Like my soul *snorts*. I wanted the larger one, just because I want to use it for my classes as well, to write down the homework I’ll have and the assignments and all that wonderful stuff.

And I’ve also started editing one of the shorties. It’s not a long one, just around 15k but it has one of the most adorable characters I’ve ever created *hugs Ilaeth* *pats head*.

A photo posted by M. S. Harris (@m.s.harris) on Aug 24, 2016 at 1:08pm PDT

 

And I can proudly say that I’ve actually finished the first read through with a bunch of notes all over it in red. The pages that have red make me happy. The pages that do not… well I don’t trust those pages. But I’m going to be rereading it a lot more as I go through it to make the necessary changes and fleshing outs and fixings. All the good stuff.

Bonus points for me for making my Beta readers cry twice by reading the ending of the story, even if they knew it was coming the second time around.

What have you been working on? How have you been? 🙂

~ Harris

M. S. Harris : Winter is coming.

“It’s been a long day without you my friend…!”

*sings out of tune*

Hello my fellow wordsmiths! How has life been in your corner of the world?

I’m well, as much as possible and I have survived a week where my body and my brain have tried to kill me multiple times, or at least put me in some serious pain. But I survived. As I am surviving a very slow and torturous moving out process. Most of my things are on the other house and it breaks my heart. My books are in boxes, most of my office supplies are in boxes. What’s a girl to do?!

Be patient. That’s what a girl to do. I have upcoming exams anyway and upcoming Suicide Squad and I’ve started to edit one of the smaller short stories.
*checks chart*
Wikipedia says it’s a novelette, not a short story. They are all short stories to me.

This story has one of the cutest characters I’ve ever encountered in my own writing. Just adorable. A puppy. You want to wrap him up in a blanket, feed him pie and tuck him in bed.

You haven’t read about him yet, which is understandable since I haven’t uploaded anything about him or the story, but he’s adorable. My betas say so and I have to believe them. Then again they love me too much and I don’t know how seriously I’m supposed to take them.

*stares at Betas*

On a more serious note, please welcome the newest member of the owl family.

wp-1471993455597.jpg

Grumpy owl.

I fell in love with him the moment I saw him. Look at that face. Grumpy cat has nothing on him. I believe I will give him though a coat of white paint, so he matches his siblings.

The owl family is growing. *tears up* Now I have in total six owls. And damn some of the stores I looked at for owls had some beautiful bronze boxes with owls and books and I wanted them but my wallet just started crying and shrivelled up.

We are still not speaking.

But yes. Exams. Editing. Moving. Some sketching.

What have you guys been up to? Do any of you have any published stories on wattpad? I’m starting university again soon and I’ll need things to read when I’m in the public transportation. Buses, subway. I have a long way to go to get to uni.

~ Harris

 

Post-Summer Blues, Pre-Winter Crisis

Hello everyone!

I am officially back from my holiday trip. Sadly, it didn’t last long, but I had a great time nonetheless (despite some awkward encounters…). I was trusted with the camera for the trip and I went off taking random landscape and aesthetic pictures. I wonder if I should post them here. What do you think?

Did any of you guys go anywhere for the holidays? Did you have a good time? As I said, I had a good time, and I am sad it was over so soon, hence the title. Don’t be alarmed by the title of this post, it’s all meant in a good way. I shall explain.

So, while I was on holidays, I started thinking about my first college year, how it would go, what I should do to prepare. I know, not the best topic to start worrying about on your limited holidays. But then I remembered all the nice things I was overlooking about autumn when I had school. The cute sweater weather, the Starbucks seasonal drinks and offers, more aesthetic landscapes, Halloween (we don’t have Halloween here, but me and my friends still try to recreate it however we can).

It should be noted here that I was never a person who liked the cold. But I think this was hugely because of having to wake up extremely early for school, while the weather outside was as cold as it could get, no amount of clothing would make me stop freezing and I was in a constant Cold-And-Upset mood for months on end. That, and the loads of homework I never did that I had, had me really not looking forward to the autumn and winter months.

My winter crisis mainly had to do with me looking forward to change for once (please hope this doesn’t backfire on me, heh). I had plenty of time on my holidays to think about this topic, which led to a small existential crisis as well. All is good though, like I said. I get paranoid and panicky too much and too easily, do not mind.

The other good thing about this is that I am planning to go stationary shopping. I’ll be dragging poor H with me for this. Against her will. Of course. She would never go stationary shopping willingly. Heh, heh.

So far, things are looking up. I shall try to be a more open-minded person and try to see the good stuff in winter, now that my main cause of bitterness is over. What about you? Do you like cold weather or warm weather? I personally prefer something in-between, with not too much sun and not too much cold. A cloudy day, perhaps. What’s your favourite season? Also, why do you like that season more than the rest?

~Gee

M. S. Harris : Chapters, Ava’s story, Outlines, Packing.

Hello, hello people!

It has been a week after Camp Nanowrimo and life just continues on. There is packing to be done, as we are in the middle of a move and right now, even most of my books are in boxes.

*strokes boxes*

My poor babies.

I only left the “Immortals After Dark” series by Kresley Cole out, as it is what I’m currently reading. I also may or may not have bought 3 or 4 books on the series from the book depository. I cannot confirm nor deny it.

*wink*

Packing things in the middle of a Greek summer is not a fun affair. It’s hot, it’s sweaty, it’s uncomfortable. Books are heavier than they appear when you pack them and we have a lot of those. Between my books and my mother’s, we are starting to wonder if we are going to have enough space in the new house for all of them.

I hope we will. I’m not willing to part with any of my babies. That’s all I’m going to say. If they want to throw out anything, they can throw out unimportant things. Like sheets and towels. Who needs those? We could use the shelves for books. That’s a lot better.

Surprisingly, I’ve also been productive. I broke down my novel “Descent” into chapters finally and as it is right now, it has 37. They might go up to 40 because I like round numbers, or 35. That 37 bugs me too much. But I do believe it is a good number of chapters. My second draft had to do a lot with fleshing out the plot and fixing it and now I have to go through it again eventually, to flesh out the descriptions and tighten it up as much as possible. But first, I gotta let it rest. The story is still too fresh in my head and even though I can take notes, it’s not wise to go poking at it, when I can’t look at it objectively.

So, in the meantime, I have Ava.

Ava was one of the three short stories I did last Nanowrimo, in November. She was the last of them and so she was left without an ending. Or so I thought. As it stands right now, Ava has a family and she has accomplished everything she wished for when the story started. It is a happy ending and as a friend of mine pointed out, I don’t do those.

I do. I try. I swear.

I could leave Ava as she is and the story would be complete. It would need no more and the reader would be satisfied. But I can throw a little more drama her way. I can make her life just a little bit harder before she gets her happy ending. I don’t know though. I’m waiting on Thorn to read it so I can get her opinion on this matter. She is, after all, my trusty Alpha reader. She sees my stories at their rawest form and she never complains. Somehow, she even likes them. She deserves a cookie for that.

*Gives Thorn a cookie*

And now that I mentioned Thorn, we had an interesting conversation about Outlines. I believe that Outlines are not set in stone. Especially the Outline of a First Draft. First Drafts are when the writer tells the story to himself/herself. There is no way you can know a story before it is done. Maybe you know the important points A, B, C, and you can assume based on your cast of wonderful troublemakers (AKA Characters) how they are going to go from A to B to C.

But they do like to look at that Outline and then ignore it completely, don’t they?

I believe that is all right. It is perfectly okay to change how your troublemakers go from point A to point B as long as the important things in the story stay the same. Your troublemakers still end up with the same results, but through a different path.

And it’s okay.

The outline is more of a suggestion if anything and troublemakers like to ignore suggestions most of the time.

What are your thoughts? Do you outline? Do you not? Do your characters give you trouble?

~ Harris

Thorn ~ Camp Ends….and the Writing Doesn’t

Thorn ~ Camp Ends….and the Writing Doesn’t

“Looks like I am the only one with sense after all.” Dakira sighed.
“You are getting off topic, ladies.” Vergil said and the three of them let it drop, with only a few glares between them.
“How do you manage that? I try to keep them in line and I get punched.” Julian complained.

Camp Ends….and the Writing Doesn’t.

Or one hopes. Its been a quiet week so far since Camp ended and I’ll admit I have done very little in the was of writing. I type a few words here and there but it was hard to get them flowing.
More so since I am trying to come up with a couple thrown in scenes from scratch.

This is what happens with first drafts I suppose. You can end up putting more in that what that plot calls for and it usually works out.
Usually. Tonight I starts some on one of these scenes and it was being difficult.

Its putting off the end of my second act as well. I was so close but my last scene took an unexpected turn.
Characters: *plot things among themselves*
Me: okay guys…this wasn’t the plan
Characters: *rip the plans to shreds and burn them*
Me: *tears*

Alright, maybe there was no literally ripping, burning , or tears. It still happened. Again not literally. My imagination ran just a teeny bit wild there.

Either way, they changed the course and now they don’t even help me figure out the course or where its going. What is going through? Who is part of it? Well that part isn’t so hard.
Still. They are uncooperative.
Or maybe I am enjoying a little rest and trying to sort out things I’ve ignored since Camp started.
Like organized and buying new coloring markers that I really didn’t NEED. They are double tipped. Sixty markers. I had to. I can use them for other things too.

What yet, I have no idea.
Camp went better in the first week than the rest of the month put together, I’ll say. A decent bit was due to my own procrastination.
Another bit was that my family LOVES to interrupt me as soon as my fingers hit keys.
Even writing this, I was in fact interrupted for a trip to a store.
Got a drink out of it though, can’t complain too much.

So now Camp is done, I am still on the same project, even if I made my word-count for Camp. I need to finish this draft and by November. It’s definitely possible. I know I can do the words, but it’s getting myself less busy to do them.
I just have to myself organized and get on a regular schedule, finally. Which I am working on, I swear. Also the writing. I’ll be working on this as well and figure out what my characters have gotten themselves into now.

What is your plans now that Nano is over? Did you finish up a project or do you still have more work? Are you plotting up new things? Or just waiting for November to get that 50K done? Thankfully we are still awhile off for that one.