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Camp NaNoWriMo Prep #5-Good luck

Hello everyone!

Today is the last day of March, and it’s also the last day before Camp NaNoWriMo.

All that I’m going to say is good luck, and stay motivated.

Join a cabin on the Camp NaNoWriMo website if you haven’t already and start talking to your cabin mates.

Tell your friends on Goodreads, or in your writing groups. They love writing and books as much as you do, and they’ve already been with you on some or all of your writing journey.

If you’re feeling low or unmotivated, take a break from writing and watch a movie, or even better read a book. Hang out with the people that make you feel special and don’t give up.

I know it sounds cheesy, but you’ve got to keep going, and know when you need to work and when you need to rest.

I can tell you from last year, it feels amazing finishing that first draft, and being in an environment where everyone else has the same goal as you. And even if you don’t finish that draft, remember-it’s a draft, not an entire polished manuscript! You’ve got many months and many more NaNo events to finish this book. April is just one of the motivators 😊

So good luck, stay motivated and remember that you’ve got a whole year to get this book done.

Posted in Author Interview, Author Spotlight, Writing

London in the Dark One Year Anniversary-Author Interview

London in the Dark

Hello everyone! I am so excited to be interviewing the wonderful Victoria Lynn as part of her one year anniversary for her book, London in the Dark, today. I hope you’ll enjoy the interview and stick around for more excitement afterwards!

 Hi Victoria. When did you start writing with the hope of becoming an author?
Probably about 3 years ago. I have always enjoyed writing, but didn’t much have the distinct hope of being published until I realized that was a possibility.
 What is London in the Dark about?
London in the Dark is about a Private Detective in London just after the turn of the century in 1910. The story is focused around him and his sister as they seek to maneuver the mystery that is surrounding them and the life challenges that have come at them.
What inspired London in the Dark?
The idea of what it would be like if someone like Sherlock Holmes had a sister. That was the main idea. 😀

That sounds really fun. Who is the book for?


Anyone who loves historical fiction with a dash of mystery and suspense. And those who enjoy deep stories full of emotion and depth.
Sounds like something that I’d read. What do you want readers to gain from your book?
I hope that they learn that even though life can be difficult and at times, full of pain and sorrow, God is always still there in the midst of it with us. He will never leave or forsake us.
 So true. Have you written any other books and where can we get them?
I have one other book aside from London in the Dark. It is a contemporary christian fiction called Bound. You can find it on amazon, here. https://amzn.to/2ITPlCN
I’m British, and I’ve always enjoyed my visits to London. Have you ever been to London before?
I have not, I have been on google street view so much though. LOL! It is my biggest hope one day to go.
If you could go back in time through history, where would you go?
Oh, that is such a hard call. I am huge history buff and love so many different eras. Probably 1910 just because that would be the most applicable. But to be honest, I am very grateful that God has me living in the time that I do.
Where can we connect with you?
You can first and foremost find me on my blog, but I also inhabit facebook and instagram under the handle @victorialynnauthor. 😀
 And finally, what tips you have for young aspiring writers?
First and foremost it is to just write. Set yourself small, achievable, daily goals and make them happen. You’ll find success if you can create a habit of writing.

Thanks so much for having me on your blog! ❤

Thanks for letting me interview you! And if you want to know more about Victoria and her book, you can find read her bio and the blurb of her book here just to whet your  appetite:

headshot for book and website

About Victoria:

Victoria Lynn is in her 20s and if she’s not writing, she is probably sewing, singing, playing the piano, washing dishes, creating something with her hands, or learning something new. She has a passion for serving her Creator, encouraging others and being creative. She blogs at http://www.rufflesandgrace.com about writing, fashion, modesty, her walk with God and life. She lives in Michigan with her parents and 8 siblings.

London Cover Full (2)

London in the Dark blurb:

London, 1910

Budding Private Detective Cyril Arlington Hartwell has a conundrum. London is being ravaged by the largest run of thefts in recent history. His hunch that it is all tied together may put him and those he loves in more danger than he could have reckoned.

Olivia Larken Hartwell is just home from boarding school for the summer anticipating time with her adoring parents.She misses her absent brother, Cyril, hoping for the day he will finally come home. But tragedy strikes, causing upheaval for all concerned and changes her life in a way she never could have imagined.

Olivia, Cyril, and their friends must bring the hidden to light, seek to execute justice, and dispel the darkness that hovers over London… and their hearts.

I don’t know about you, but this books sounds really exciting! You can buy the book here . If you want to continue celebrating the one year anniversary of London in the Dark, why don’t you join the party over on Facebook. There may or may not be some  appearance from the main characters … 🙂 

How about you?

Have you ever written or read a Historical mystery before?

Have you ever visited London? I’d love to know!

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Posted in Writing

Camp NaNoWriMo #4-The Outline

Hello everyone!

So, we practically have two days to go, and some people still haven’t got an outline yet! Aaargh! But don’t worry, today we are going to do a “Scribbled Outline”

Why a scribbled outline? Because if you want to try outlining with the help of KM Weiland’s website  Helping Writers Become Authors, you may be outlining for a while, three months perhaps? And you’ve only got two days to outline.

So today, I am just going to give you a very simple and easy template which covers the most important elements of your story, one that many books and films use. And pantsers, don’t you dare run away. You’ve got to at least have a slight sense of what you are doing before you crash and burn.

The Hook, i.e. The Beginning, – This is where your main character is introduced, along with his/her world and character traits that makes your reader have a sense of empathy/relatability for him/her and wonder what will happen to this character.

The Inciting Event, i.e. The First Game Changer,– This is the moment that shakes your protagonist’s world and pushes him/her into new territory, one that is out of their comfort zone, causing them to make choices that they may or may not have considered before.

The Response to the Change– Here, your protagonist will stumble around, trying to figure out how to deal with the choices that they’ve made regarding the change and how to make them work. This is a great place to display the flaws of your protagonist and realistic mistakes that they would make if this was actually happening for real.

The Second Game Changer– This is the wake up call for your protagonist that they need to solve this problem, or more problems will come out of it. This has to be really clear for the reader that there is a main problem, and the effect on the protagonist must also be really clear.

The Midpoint– Your protagonist is taking the fight into their own hands with determination, and is really struggling.  This must cause the tensions to rise for the reader.

The Blow- Your antagonist, who has been at it with the protagonist all of this time, makes a blow, and causes your protagonist to feel defeated and nearly lose all hope.

The Golden Piece- After a lot of struggling, your protagonist has found another, and very important, piece of the puzzle which will help him/her to continue to solve the problem. This is also a good idea to have a personal revelation  or the moral of you story finally embraced by your protagonist.

The Ultimate Climax– This is where good and evil have a head-on collision, where your protagonist pours out total determination and becomes the hero everyone was hoping he/she was.

The Resolution – This is where everything is tied up, and your protagonist has settled down with a new mind-set. You could say that this is your Happy Ever After, unless it is a sad story,.

And there you have it! A very quick outline that will help you when you are writing! The best part? It can be used for anything- from a 500 word story to a 50,000 word novel.

How about you?

How do you outline?

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Posted in Writing, Writing Wednesday

Camp NaNaNoWriMo Prep #3-The Vision

Hello everyone.

Eek, Camp NaNoWriMo is nearly here!

So today, we are going to be talking about the vision for your book, or rather a book vision.

What is a book vision?

It’s the ideas and themes of the story and the ideal person that you are writing too.

What?

Ok. let me give you an example with my novel from last year and my project for this year’s Camp NaNo.

When I wrote my first novel last year, I originally  my vision was going to be just about girls having good friendships. But as I started to edit my novel, I realised that I had not just written about girls overcoming their issues. I had written about teen girls who were dealing with bereavement and exploring the ideas of trust and the value of strong family relationships and friendships. Once I realised what the overall view was, I knew that I was going to have to start over and make those themes come out even stronger.

For the children’s book that I am writing next month , I know very well what the themes are going to be: They are about honesty, and standing up for what’s right, even when everyone around you is doing wrong. And now that I know what my themes are, I can confidently write this book.

So, here are two examples of themes for a book, but what about the ideal people that you are writing for? I mean, you can’t please everybody and some people will be more touched by your story than others.

One way that I suggest is by writing an open letter to your one reader who is having to deal with your story’s themes in their life. As you start to do this, think about what kind of people are dealing with those themes- are you writing to a teenage girl who has been diagnosed with cancer? Are you writing to a little boy who has just gotten told off for something that he didn’t do? Are you writing to a young woman who is off to uni? Are you writing to a teacher who is leaving his school?

When you envision the person, think of their language, how they react to certain things and talk to them. Do you have any experiences that you can relate? What are their hobbies? What kind of people do they hang out with?

Once you have written one letter, think of other people who might benefit from your story and write them letters as well. This is the basis for creating characters.

Hopefully, you have now covered  the themes of your book and who your potential audience is going to be. But these are my ideas, and maybe you have another way of forming a vision for your book 🙂

In the next blog post, I will be talking about (gulp) outlining, so stay tuned.

How about you?

Do you have a vision for your book?

Do you have another method for creating a vision?

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Posted in Writing

Camp NaNoWriMo Prep #2- Schedule

Hello everyone.

Today, I am going to be talking about how to schedule for NaNoWriMo.

This process doesn’t usually take long, maximum a day or two.

The first step that you need to consider for Camp NaNoWriMo is- Am I going to be able to write every single day? Because hey, it’s April, it’s Easter, you’re probably have a lot going on.

So you will need to check your calendar to see if you have any  activities during April.

But why?

The amount of days you are able to write affects your daily word count towards your goal, which is very important for completion. Once you have counted how many days you can do, you are ready for the second step of scheduling.

The second step that you need to do is to calculate a daily word count, which is very simple:

Daily word count= Overall Word goal / Amount of days that you are going to write

Quick note: When you place your project and your overall word goal on the  Camp NaNoWriMo site, it will automatically calculate a daily word goal.

The third step that you need to do is one that many people miss out, which causes a lot of problems. This is to calculate how long it will take to write each day.

Now before you run away, let me explain why you need to do this. It gives you a fairly accurate account of how long you will spend at the computer or writing in  your notebook for and you can plan ahead when you can write during the day and when you can rest.

So what is the calculation you ask? It’s this:

Daily amount of time writing(in minutes) = Daily word count /100 x 5.

Why do you need to divide by 100 and multiply by 5? Well NaNoWriMo has calculated that people , especially under pressure, tend to write around 100 words every five  minutes.

If I hadn’t known the calculation, but I knew that I can write 100 words every five minutes, I can times the 100 words by any number and multiply 5 by that number to get how long it will take.

I know, it’s math in writing, but it is seriously useful.

And that’s it! That’s all that you need to do when scheduling for Camp NaNoWriMo!

How about you?

How do you schedule for NaNoWriMo?

Our next post in this series, we will look at the vision of your story, and how to go about researching for it.

But before you go, you may have noticed that I bolded one of the ‘I’s today. That’s because my blogger friend Libby May is celebrating her one year old anniversary for her blog with a letter scavenger hunt with all  of her blogging friends. Wanna know more? Head over to The Blog Birthday and find out how you can win some books!

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Posted in Writing, Writing Wednesday

Camp NaNoWriMo Prep #1-Prepare

Hello everyone.

As you can see from the title, Camp NaNoWriMo is coming soon, and it may be best to start preparing. For those of you who don’t know what NaNoWriMo is, it’s a monthly challenge that runs in November where you write a novel(or a book of any kind) under 30 days. The camps run in April and July.

So, why we do we need to prepare, and  what does it mean to prepare for NaNoWriMo?

Let’s answer the first question:

We need to prepare for NaNoWriMo, because without a structure and a goal, you are going to crash. Even if you are a pantser, you need to think about how you are going to write this novel.

Now that we know the importance of preparing, let’s think about the second question:

Preparing for NaNoWriMo means four things:

  1. Schedule
  2. Vision
  3. Outline(There, I said the O word. But you pantsers had better not run away)
  4.  Motivation

If you prepare for NaNoWriMo with these four things together, you will get very far.

I will give you an example of when I did Camp NaNoWriMo in July 2017.

It was the first time that I had taken the challenge, and I was very nervous.

I was aware that I had to travel during July, so I made a schedule of when I was going to write and how many words I should write for each day.

Then, I started thinking of the story that I wanted to write, and did some research until I was finally happy with the story concepts.

I then began to outline. Having never outlined before, I did a lot of research on my go to source Helping Writers Become Authors. I seriously recommend this place when you are writing.

Once I had finished, I then told my writing groups, my family and my friends what I was doing, and if I ever felt discouraged during the month they were always there to encourage me.

I was able to finish it in the schedule that I wanted to and travel with my family on a very enjoyable holiday.

Now that we’ve had a look at my story, you are probably thinking of how to prepare the four steps for you. Well, this week and next week, I will be giving you a mini series on how to prepare for NaNoWriMo.

How about you?

Are you doing April’s Camp NaNoWriMo this year?

How are you preparing for Camp NaNoWriMo?

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Posted in Monthly R and R

February Reflections and March Resolutions

Hello everyone!

Is it seriously March already?

February was very good as I had a few performances and travelled to London for a bit.

Last month, I had these Resolutions:

Do some beta-reading that has a deadline for March   

I did, and boy did I enjoy the books 🙂 I’ll post some reviews on the books in the upcoming months, so stay tuned!

Do some more outlining.

I have, and I think I’m almost halfway!

Actually read, and possibly finish, No et Moi, along with possibly watching a French film.

Not only did I read No et Moi, I’m halfway done!

Start writing a story for a competition and a possibly writer’s collection, both deadlines in March.

Yes, and it was really fun to do as I was writing a poem instead, which is something that I don’t usually do.

Compose one piece.

I got a few melodies out, but I don’t think it’s completed yet, so hopefully I’ll finish it off this month.

Start planning what to blog about in March + April as well as continue to blog this month.

Yes, and I’m very excited for the posts that are coming up.

So, now that we’re in March, it means that we have some Resolutions!

  1. Finish No et Moi
  2. Start preparing for Camp NaNoWriMo
  3. Compose, or finish, a song
  4. Finish my outline for my novel.
  5. Actually blog about a few upcoming travels.

And there we have it!

How about you?

Do you have any plans for March?

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