Outside of writing #IWSG

IWSG Question of the Day: Besides writing, what other creative outlets do you have?

Um…well, you see, that’s a slightly complex question with a simple answer: I don’t have one thing  I regularly stick to. I enjoy a variety of crafts, though have given up on anything to do with yarn. I wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t really for me.

I want to get back to drawing and perhaps get into some digital work. Then there’s 3D modeling that I haven’t done in forever. I’d say time is against me, but really, I’m scared of failure. And it’s something that holds true in my writing. The fact I get anything out is somewhat impressive.

But getting back… Um, I’ve started doing some publication layouts and while that’s writing-related, I’m not the one generating the content. I really enjoy seeing things come together.

I’m hoping I can get back to a couple of things soon and create some additional items to accompany my writing. Pretty vague response, but I don’t want to give up anything just yet.

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I’m BLU

Some of you know I play FFXIV. Of course blue mage (BLU) was released yesterday and I had to give it a try (if only because I’m insane and need to max out every job and class).

At this point in time, BLU is a fun and insanely frustrating job. Being a limited job, you can’t just jump into queue for a random dungeon. However, 4 BLUs running Tam Tara Deepcroft is super overpowered even at level. I was missing a few good spells for that in my quest to learn another, but it didn’t seem to matter too much.

There’s the fun part: tearing through things. The frustrating part: learning all the spells. For those unaware, you need to fight an enemy and see them use the spell to have a chance at learning it. A half dozen or so runs through Tam Tara starts to test even my patience.

The other frustrating part is so many people are running BLU and there are only a limited number of mobs in the open world that cast spells sometimes that it gets hugely bogged down in areas. When you need that spell for your job quest, it gets even worse.

I’ve been taking it slow, not pushing too much, trying to get a feel for the job and I’m already at level 25 (max 50 at current). I’m sure there are people already at 50. This job levels very quickly. Especially if you’re pretty good at leveling things fast and can figure out how to maximize your time.

Would I trade my red mage (RDM) main for BLU if I could? I don’t know. I tend to pick my main on how much fun the job is. I mained summoner (SMN) through Heavensward and bard (BRD) through ARR. Always seem to keep scholar (SCH) as my main healer, but I’ve been going back and forth on paladin (PLD) and dark knight (DRK) as what I want to tank on through Stormblood.

No idea if I’ll switch when Shadowbringers drops, but with the way BLU is set up right now, I hope they have some good things in store for the job. For now I’ll go back to snickering as I cause chaos and destruction with BLU, seeing what else I can do outside of entertaining FC mates with killing myself with some spells.

Looking all around #IWSG

ACK! I missed last month! Sorry all. Things haven’t been the greatest and I’ve been rather distracted. Can I blame the puppy?

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Okay, probably not. And he’s not that small anymore. Or that floppy. He does still try to get on my lap sometimes though.

The New Year always brings that time of reflection and looking forward. It can be kind of nerve wracking.

I really don’t know what 2019 will bring. I know things I have scheduled like being in Southern New England in March and Boise Book Fest in June. I’m working on staying on track with Conjured Defense. And if you’ve seen my newsletter, you’ve seen the next hint.

3 book image

Also, all my books are on a Kindle Countdown deal on Amazon for $/₤0.99 through January 7th.

Twisted Magics (US/UK)
Shattered Illusions (US/UK)
Twice Cursed (US/UK)

IWSG Question of the Day:  What are your favorite and least favorite questions people ask you about your writing?

Oh gosh, I don’t know if I have a favorite. I love having conversations with people either about the books, the process, or even just some general topics regarding writing.

My least favorite is probably “how long have you been writing?” Wait! It’s likely not for the reason you think.

So, my dislike of that question is I typically don’t know the time frame that is being asked. Most of the time I start answering how long I’ve been just writing, which is most of my life, but many times people are looking at how long have I been putting out books or working on this series, which is a much smaller time frame. For me, all that time just writing for myself is a part of the whole story. It’s just not what I’m currently presenting so I have that “awkward” moment in realizing my mistake.

It’s like all the side story work I do with the series, but no one else has read it. Except for that one I put out on Wattpad a couple years ago.

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It’s #NaNoWriMo season and an #IWSG day

NaNoWriMo is going on and you know what that means…

My head is buried in whatever new novel so I’m going to be pretty quiet this month. I’m really nervous with this one because I spent through the end of October getting Conjured Defense to beta status and didn’t get to spend much time thinking about book 5.

Don’t get me wrong, I have a concept, but typically I’ll have a decent sized playlist and a few key scenes I’ve been working on in my head. Usually battle sequences.

I entered November with a pretty sad excuse for a playlist and my concept. We’ll see how this goes. I’m a notorious pantser anyway. Should be fine, right? Right?

 

IWSG Question of the Day: How has your creativity in life evolved since you began writing?

Um… I’ve been writing for so long I’m not entirely certain.

One of the things I will drive people nuts with is coming up with a variety of scenarios when the news reports something, but gives little or vague information. I don’t do this all the time and only with select people. It’s a fun exercise to come up with both logical and closing in on far-fetched scenarios. And of course everything in between.

Other than that, I tend to draw ideas from around me all the time without actively thinking about it. I never intentionally trained this, but it’s what I do. Most ideas or concepts that I keep end up in the “someday” pile. Some sneak their way in while I’m writing. It never has to be something large. Often times it’s a small moment in a larger story.

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Writing through life #IWSG

IWSG Question of the Day: How do major life events affect your writing? Has writing ever helped you through something?

Yes and no. Some of you know my history and I’ll try not to get too personal here.

The yes part is that I’ve been writing to make it through life in general. There have been many times that I didn’t write for extended lengths of time and let life take over. Sometimes it was due to specific events, sometimes things just got crappy. Not exactly the smartest thing I ever did at that time, but that was also a time period that I was hiding the fact that I wrote.

Now for the no. Writing used to be enough, but more recently it hasn’t. I’ve been reluctant to post about medical issues and I will continue to be for a bit longer. If you’ve caught me in person, I may speak about it, but I’m not quite ready to post it on social media.

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Publishing Routes #IWSG

IWSG Question of the Day: What publishing path are you considering/did you take, and why?

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I am indie/self-published (whichever term you prefer). It wasn’t an easy choice to make given that everything falls on my shoulders. I did consider a traditional path, but it didn’t fit in with my goals and situation.

My main goal is to tell a story. I could lose creative control going a traditional route. I certainly would have little to no say on the cover art (though admittedly I’d have a hard time having a problem with a little Silver on the cover XD). Also, the trend for marketing seemed to fall to the writer rather than the publishing house for most and I have to manage that anyway being indie.

Does it come across as being a bit of a control freak? Probably, but at the end of the day, Shadow Phoenix Publishing is mine, my books are mine, and, most importantly, I’m getting to tell my story. I’m still navigating my way through the realm of being an indie writer and learning whatever I can while trying to help others out when possible. I have had quite a few awesome neighbors at events.

Would I consider a traditional deal if it came my way? Yes, I would certainly give it a look and re-evaluate. All paths, and I guess you could say sub-paths (because at least with indies, there can be great variation from one to the next), are viable options, but it is up to the individual to decide how they want to proceed when it comes to publishing. Consider your goals and where you hope to go in the future and try to match it to the best path you can find.

Well, that felt a bit heavy. On a side note, I announced at BCAF that the title for book 4 is Conjured Defense.

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4 books later… #IWSG

When you realize 4 books later that you’ve written your main character with a particular mental health issue. 4 books in I’m not about to change it because it is so much a part of her personality and her background does support this particular disorder.

The part I’m concerned about is that eventually this will have to be dealt with. People can live with undiagnosed disorders for decades, but things will come to a breaking point with her. Now that I am fully aware (and have done far too much research) I have to figure out what I’m going to do going forward. I’ve been adjusting my mental road map of the overarching story to be able to support this, which admittedly, hasn’t taken much altering.

And here people are probably wondering if they missed a book. No, book 4 is in editing. Fully written, but I still won’t release it until next summer the earliest.

Have you ever realized something about one of your characters long after you’ve been writing them?

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