I'm not going to start this blog off by saying that it's been a while, because I seem to be doing that too often with my blogs.
Agh. Shoot.

My Nanowrimo 2010 failed. I got further than I did in 2009, but I still didn't reach the winning line. Well, my beloved puppy-dog had to be put down and I never got to say goodbye to him. It really hit me hard. I loved my dog more than anything. He was the coolest dog and I'd been proud to have him as my own. I don't even want to get another dog, ever, because none will ever compare to how awesome he was. I also received somewhat... devastating news about someone very close to my heart, and it took the wind out of my sails and left me unable to write for a long time.

That aside, big things happening this year. I went on holiday overseas for a month, I got married, I moved house, oh, and I have baby number three due in a month.

Also, our motherboard bombed on me when I got back from holiday and I think I've lost all my fanfiction work. I can't find it anywhere. Which... is something I try not to think about a lot because I had over 30 fanfictions I was working on, each in different stages of writing, and I can't remember bully-beef about any of it. I guess it's partially a good thing, because I've been working on my originals more frequently without the distraction of fanfiction.

I do want to apologise to my readers. I do read your reviews, and I appreciate each and every one of them. I'm sorry I haven't been able to respond to them personally as I used to. As you can imagine, I'm being kept quite busy with two little kids and another one due soon. I've only been able to find time to update this blog now - that says a lot about where my times goes.

I am keeping your reviews in my inbox, and once I can work out a routine in the next 5-6 months, you bet I'll be replying to them. Regardless if you'll have forgotten what your reviewed by then, I feel I owe it to you to at least say thanks for the R&R.

I'd also like to let you all know that I'm not abandoning any of my fanfictions. Yes, I've lost all my work, and it is going to be absolute hell trying to get cracking at them again, but they will be completed at some point or another. I tend to write fanfiction when I procrastinate with my originals, but considering how little time I have to write anything at all lately, I don't even have time to procrastinate anymore. But the fanfics will be finished. I never leave my work unfinished. It's just a matter of WHEN.


It's not that easy to write a horror story. Many things that scare people have already been done in one form or the other on television and in literature. 

So a few things I've picked up during my procrastination period are, first and foremost, to be original. 

For me that's one of the hardest hurdles to get over. It's also why I let my imagination roam wild and I let my characters go into the abyss outside the box. If you have read my FF's you'll know what I'm talking about - when a story feels like it's starting to settle it means that it is becoming predictable. 

That's when I change the direction of the story and throw one of my infamous 'twists' into the works; something no one saw coming and it follows the plot. My characters are still chasing after their happy ending (or not so-happy ending), they just decided to take a treacherous hike through the forest of doom instead of skipping along the clearly marked path to their destination.

 Throwing these unexpected twists into my stories have had readers questioning my sanity and accusing me of being evil (although I will not deny the latter). But I'm not really. 

I only choose the road I believe will develop my characters into the beings I want them to be, and you can't have character development if you're afraid to imprison your perfectly powerful little darling in the enemy's dungeon and have him slowly lose his mind instead of magically breaking out of his confinement, pronto!

Another thing I've gotten down to an art is developing the story itself. I'll have this wonderful idea for a novel, maybe dot down a scene or two, or I'll write a 'whole' first draft from start to finish. Then I leave it.

 I go back over the details in my head; replay the whole story in my mind over and over. I leave it to fester, I re-think it time and time again. Truth be told, giving a plot time and space to grow inside of you will eventually produce a wild, beautiful tree. It will have branches that spread in directions you never would have thought of if you'd drowned it with water. And when the time comes to revisit it, you'll have a clear vision of which twigs to trim, which branches to break off, and which ones are necessary for the tree to flourish.

Then, of course, there's the roles your characters play that you need to consider. Minor characters that serve no purpose but to fill a blank white space with words need to be erased completely. Main characters that are necessary to tell the story must be original.

 Each of mine in Shadow Legacy, the manuscript I'm currently working on, have clear goals they want to achieve. Haley, my lead protagonist, has her goals change throughout the novel, as her character develops and situations arise, from basic survival to protecting her family. Randolf's goal is to keep Haley alive and preferably in one piece, Jeremy's goal is mainly to woo Amber and avoid getting dragged back to his origins, and Amber's goal is unachievable - who can really make everyone truly happy? - but her determination for goodness serves as the spark that redirects the other characters toward the end.

Speaking of which, it's really difficult for me to write horror. Not that I lack the creativity to do so, just the opposite actually. The story has become so vivid in my mind that, yes, I actually get the jitters merely thinking of starting to revise it. A sleepless night of procrastinating later and here I am, coffee in hand, curtains wide open and music playing loudly. 

I'm in the right mind to inflict my horror on the page, and once I have, maybe you too will be as scared as I am.

Until the next blog!