Dog sitting, Novel Planning,& Other Stuff

I think it’s safe to say that I am horrible at deciding which platform I want to use as a blog.

One of my friends talked me into creating a website through Strikingly, and I’m so glad she did. It’s a beautiful website, and can be found here. But she also thought it might be a good idea to create a blog there, and while I loved the idea for a while, I think I’m back on WordPress permanently…it might be more work, but I might cross-post on my website. I haven’t decided yet, to be honest. I know that it seems like I’m indecisive as hell, but I am, and I’ve learned to be okay with that. I’d drive myself insane otherwise.

No. Really. I would. I can’t even decide which shoes I’m going to wear to take my brother’s dog potty sometimes. I’m dog-sitting until he gets his own place. I think he intends to move in with his girlfriend, and I don’t mind keeping Atlas while he figures stuff out. Until then, I have a sweet pup who likes ti sit next to me while I write.

I’m laughing at myself. It’s this kind of indecision that has made it so impossible for me to sit down and actually plot out a novel. Most of the time, I find that it’s more effective when I sit down and write whatever pops into my head. It’s how I’m able to keep up with more than one writing project at a time, even though it may take longer to finish a book.

Or, that’s the way I used to be.

For the past ten weeks, I’ve been in an online class through Southern New Hampshire University, titled ENG: 520: Story and Concept. For the past ten weeks, I’ve been planning my first full-length, stand alone novel. I’m not talking about my series, like what I have already published with Cheap Guitars, Cheap Lies, Head Over Hoof, and Cheap Sunglasses. I’m talking about an honest to goddess complete novel with twists and terns. Something with deep, interconnected themes that allow me to reconnect with my roots as a literary. Something that has profluence and carefully constructed beats.

How the hell did I ever write my first novels without a full plan?

I’ve even gone so far as to make one for Cheap Tricks, the final installment in the series (for now). The writing process has been so much easier. I’m trying to train myself to think of the full outline as the initial draft, the one that interconnects all the little pieces of the web I’ve mapped in my brain. In fact, I have been using Scapple, one of Scrivener’s programs. It works just like a web would on paper, and that has always been my favorite way of getting my ideas out so I can see if they are feasible for writing. I don’t fault myself for my earlier publishing mistakes–and I’m humble that way, because I know I made them–but I’m learning as I go and now I know I cannot move forward without a beat-by-beat plan. Something that I can get detailed with, that I can hold in my hand, and decide from there if the story will work so much. Actually, CT was going to be the second book in the Cheap series, but because of some serious issues, I decided to write Cheap Sunglasses instead. That’s the last one I’m ever writing without a plan, even though I love the novel.

Also, here is the summary for Heart Be Still. I’m planning on starting it in March. It’s still sort of in it’s rough stages, but it gives you an idea of what the story will be about.

Patience McDaniel has one goal—keep her excellent GPA and get accepted into Harvard. Her life is derailed when her mother dies and her estranged sister moves to Maine with promises of helping with the bills, all while hiding a large family secret. Joey Slater has no choice but to move in with his aunt and uncle after he drops out of college. He ignores his cousin’s request to leave her best friend, Patience, alone. He can’t help but be fascinated with the sad, lonely girl, who suddenly needs to drag a date to a party. Patience doesn’t want to admit anything because that means she might fail in getting accepted into Harvard—to her, Joey is a welcome distraction. He also has a bad reputation in town and it angers her sister when she spends time with him. It’s definitely not love…right?


**Edit made. Earlier, I said Cheap Lies instead of Cheap Tricks, because apparently I can’t keep books in my cheap series straight. Bah…haha.

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