17 Journal and Balance
Hillary: [00:00:00] Welcome to Loose Leaf. If a multi author writing journal, where we talk goals, the ups and downs of writing and where we try to warn you off our greatest pitfalls, we'll keep it short because you don't have much time and we'd rather be writing. Welcome back. I'm charity.
Charity: [00:00:22] I'm Hillary and kale is going to dial in today with a prerecorded.
Message versus report. And so we'll get to that here in a little bit, but, um, how are you doing Hillary?
Hillary: [00:00:36] I'm doing great. I feel like I'm, I'm getting kind of on top of things. I still have a ton to do, but, um, I can't even remember what it was that was keeping me so busy. Oh, I guess it was the conference maybe, but everything was piling up and piling up and I feel like I'm finally knocking things out again.
Just so wonderful. Yeah. I'm. I'm not reporting yet. So I was hopeful.
Charity: [00:00:57] You can report if you want. And then we'll listen to kill. I mean, we're free and
Hillary: [00:01:01] easy today. No restraints. I love this podcast with no restraints. Yes.
Charity: [00:01:09] She's sitting here with a dog on her lap because he won't leave her alone.
Hillary: [00:01:13] I'm not a dog person either, but these little ones are so funny.
They're just come sit on me. Yeah. Anyway, so I've been busy with all sorts of things. And now that I'm starting to knock things out, I got, I did get my. Mystery blocked out, which was very exciting. I've been thinking about that a little bit, but then I have arranged to trade for editing some website services.
So I'm building a website this week as well. Nice. Yes. And that's going really well and it's kind of really fun and I love
Charity: [00:01:42] that you get excited about that side of being. And author and writer cause not everybody
Hillary: [00:01:47] does. I actually really love marketing. That's one of the things that's like, it makes sense to my brain.
I don't always get it right the first time, but I don't think anybody does, but I understand it to an extent, I understand why we do what we do and. I like understanding that stuff. And so I kind of try and research some of that and figure out more things like, uh, even the whole like color theory and, um, words that are power words and things that help make a difference in what we do, because nobody, nobody likes doing things and feeling like it's useless.
So it's just, it's really interesting to me to see how that. All those pieces affect it. And I love putting it together.
Charity: [00:02:28] See lots of fun. I think you need to plan our next podcast and we need to delve into that a little bit deeper because I'm sure other people are like me. I'm like, I know I have to do it.
I know why I should do it, but it doesn't come easy. And I'm like,
Hillary: [00:02:45] yeah, I don't know that it even comes easy for me, honestly. I just, I like it. And so I enjoy getting into it and figuring it out. I think that's half the battle. It is. I, I, haven't had a lot of success with my ads and things with purpose.
Cause like I keep going back and forth. I'm like, well, I only have a couple books out right now, so it's kind of numbered to be successful with them. But I, there are things that I'm learning too that make a difference in that, in the, um, the metadata. And I'm like, I have to go through and just really fine tune my.
Uh, my ads and my books, even to make sure that they're being effective. Cause I'm a little afraid that in my knowledge that I trained Amazon to not show my stuff. Oh no. So it's a learning process and I still have lots more books to write and lots more things to, to put out there. So.
Charity: [00:03:34] Okay, well, hold that thought.
Cause we probably will revisit it on, put you on the
Hillary: [00:03:38] spot next time. That's funny. We'll see what I remember on the spot. You know how good my memory is?
Charity: [00:03:46] Well, we'll save it for another day. Um, Michael last week was to just enjoy writing. He said my
Hillary: [00:03:52] goal, I thought you said Michael I'm like who's Michael.
Yeah. To enjoy
Charity: [00:03:57] writing, to enjoy writing. And the plan was to just do science fiction, however. Over the weekend. I got back notes from three people, including you on. The Christmas story. Um, the Christmas dance. And since that's the one that has to be turned in by the 15th, I went back and, and I didn't hate it.
I did enjoy the process because things were going better than I thought they were. And it's a really good story. Yeah. But you had great things to say that it was great. And then it kind of ended in, went.
Hillary: [00:04:31] Well, it doesn't mean we can't all work on it, but you had a really good story, which means I'm excited for the
Charity: [00:04:37] revision.
Yeah. So I'm almost done with those revisions because like I said, Hillary had some great points and we need to make sure our stories are exciting and that the tension lasts all the way to the end. Otherwise it will feel like this, this draft did where it just kind of ended. But then the chapters kept going.
So I'm excited about the changes too. And so hopefully that will be all done by the end of this week. And then I can, well, then I have one more Christmas story I have to get done, but I have a little bit more time. So once I finished these revisions, I'll probably move into a better balance of doing science fiction and.
Hillary: [00:05:16] This last edit for Carrie's story. Christmas story balance is what I've been thinking about today. I'm just saying that's probably our greatest pitfall right now. Yes. Oh no, that's totally what I was thinking about just in the fact that I've been had things so piled up and I finally feel like I'm finally starting to get a handle on things.
However, I know in this upcoming week that I only have certain things that I have on my plate writing wise, right. But there are other things that are going to come in. I know there's other pieces that I need to be working on. And, um, my writing goal word count is really high right now because I, because I've been behind and, um, but then I also have family stuff.
My daughter's homecoming thing is coming up and we're supposed to be making a dress for that. I have a Christmas nativity program coming up that I'm doing costuming for there's this, all these things. So it's like, I have this plan for the week. And I was supposed to work. This was to finish the website.
I'm supposed to do another draft on my cozy mystery. And I'm supposed to start at least one other book, just like getting words down on it. Right. I believe it's my sweet romance. Um, well I have two options that I can start. I can either start on the Christmas one or I can start on the motorcycles and I don't know, those are all, that's a full plate all by itself.
Right? And so I'm just like, okay, right. Balance is going to be tricky for me. And I just have, it's one of those things where every once in a while you come to this realization that the Dover really is balanced. I don't think balance
Charity: [00:06:46] exists. It seems like, you know, we always talk about going into the holiday season, but with kids, it seems like the fall season is always
Hillary: [00:06:53] crazy busy.
Fall is very busy, but like every season at summer's busy because we're all busy doing summer stuff. And spring is busy because you're getting ready for graduations and all there's holidays. Then, then, well, hopefully
Charity: [00:07:03] it'll all work out. I know. Prevalence is something I've always struggled with. There are times where I did it well, and there are times when I don't and I think it's one of those personal things you have to figure out.
Like I have to block out the time and say from. This time to this time I'm doing this.
Hillary: [00:07:21] I am terrible at that. I know. Well, partly because I get, so hyper-focused on things. It's like, I'll block out this much time and then I just keep going. And then all of a sudden it's dinner time and everybody's like, we're home, they're hungry.
He was going to help me. So it's hard to stop when you're out there. That's what I'm always afraid of though. When you're on a roll like that, you just, you want to keep going because you don't want to lose that excitement. You don't want to lose the inspiration. You don't want to let that go. And so it's hard, but I think the best, I guess the best advice I've heard on that is to just take a moment and write down just a couple sentences of where you're going.
And then walk away because that helps you pick up where you were. And, um, kind of remember it doesn't always work real well for me, because sometimes I look at those sentences and go, yeah, why? No idea.
Charity: [00:08:15] Well, and as a writer, when you're in that creative vibe, it feels so good.
Hillary: [00:08:20] And you're like, I'm accomplishing something
Charity: [00:08:23] and it's, it's what I think.
People who are on drugs. I think that's what they feel. I think that's why they do drugs. Cause it's that high of being creative and my characters are talking to me and you're getting off all those good chemical dates. These endorphins, there you go. There you go. Thank you for happening. And you're like, Oh, I just don't want to walk away.
And. And plus I think
Hillary: [00:08:46] they do have visions and see, during those times loosen it a little bit.
Charity: [00:08:53] I have to do is close your eyes and watch the movie, you know, how do I put that on the page?
Hillary: [00:08:58] I forget it. By the time it's done, I'm like, I go back and it's like, okay. Maybe, I think it was something like this it's fun, but I do it for cats so fast.
Charity: [00:09:09] terrible. Well, shall we listen to kale and see
Hillary: [00:09:13] what his plan is? Let's see what kale says. Okay. Let's see if he's got his, uh, radio voice on or exactly. Neither of us have listened to this yet. So it's kind of fun. You all here for the first time
Charity: [00:09:25] together. Exactly.
Kahle: [00:09:27] Here I am. It is almost one in the morning on October the fifth.
And I have music playing in my ears that I just got finished writing for a music project. Okay. This week with the writing, I was basically able to research into beat sheets. I wrote down some of the notes from the websites that we talked about in the podcast last week. I am trying to decide which beats count as major versus which count as minor.
I've also been giving thoughts to doing NaNoWriMo going forward on this particular goal of learning how to do beat sheets. I think I am going to create a beat sheet for a different story first, not one completely unrelated, but. I want to do the beats for a sub story going on within the greater story and write about the events from a character's point of view, who will not be featured enormously in the story itself.
I think this is going to help me explore the world more and. Um, give me something to do for NaNoWriMo right now. The, uh, the song project I'm working on is a song a day in October with my friend, uh, Ryan Speakman, his SoundCloud is, uh, speaks Manatee, ease a musician from Utah that I met while I was going to there.
We've done a lot of, a lot of work together for a lot of years. And PR, uh, taking part in his song, a song a day for the month. Projects is really fun. I'm determined to participate every single day. This month, while I'm doing that, I will be writing out a story for a character named Bruce. He's a caretaker and a Druid.
He of all people know more about the mysteries of the story. Hopefully I'll be able to lay out. A few more details for the main story that I want to be telling, as I explore Bruce's point of view on some of the events that lead to the story. Um, also I've been having trouble figuring out where to start the story in the first place.
I, it feels like there's so much that goes on before the main character enters. I don't know if I should be writing a prologue or something or work the backstory in with kind of like time jump chapters throughout the book. Um, I've really enjoyed getting those from, uh, authors that I've read, like Frederick Forsyth and, um, Brandon Sanderson.
Well, there's my updates. Um, Keep writing or start writing I'm Kelvin Bossi,
Hillary: [00:12:49] he's such a good sport too. Having to do that on your own is not fun. So we're glad he sent that in
Charity: [00:12:56] and I'm excited about his
Hillary: [00:12:57] goals and what he's learning. He's doing awesome stuff. I completely forgot that we talked about nano. I was like, Oh yeah, nano.
I guess I have a story I can work on in there. I actually do. I think I'm probably going to try and do it just for the sake of one for the podcast. I mean, it'd be fun to talk about it while we're doing it. And then if he stood at two, I mean, it just be fun to kind of do it together and see how it goes.
Yeah. I mean, I've written that many words in less than a month before, so. Yeah,
Charity: [00:13:24] well, I pretty much decided I'm going to do it my way. Yeah. Cause I Oh, but like with the, yeah. Um, I'm going to work on stories have already started.
Hillary: [00:13:33] That's how I've always done it before. I'm like, I'm just going to try well, and most of the time, 50,000 words, isn't enough for a story.
Right. Where, where I've been before, when I've done it, I've now done one that's only 45,000, but still again, it's not even 50,000. So I'm like, uh, Right. I finished, but doesn't count. But yeah, this one, I think I've got some, some decent work that I could do in there. And I've got enough stories that are upcoming, that
Charity: [00:13:58] if you had to pick right now, would you pick the motorcycle Christmas?
Hillary: [00:14:03] You'd work on the motor. The Christmas ones are novellas. Yeah. So get like half of them. Yeah. But it's supposed to be 50,000 on a store. I'm like, I'm going to try and do it that way. And it'll, I'll do the motorcycle one, which means I'd like to get the draft of the Christmas. Well, the draft of the Christmas one was already done.
Really. I need to revise that first one. And, um, I'm hoping to get that one done and offer it as exclusive content to my newsletter. If anybody wants to sign up for it.
and then I'll restart release them all mid year, next year. Yeah. So Nana
Charity: [00:14:35] will be fun. Yeah. Well, that's cool. So the next time we all get together, we can talk about what our plan is and,
Hillary: [00:14:41] and, you know, yeah. Getting ready for Navajo. And I love that he's doing this a sub story. When that came up, we were both talking about her.
Like, Hey, that'll be a great lead magnet too. I mean, yeah, not only is it just a good practice, something to get used to the beat sheet, something too. Kind of work through the sub. The sub story is always hard for me. I'm like, this is my story. And then I'm like, Oh wait, there has to be more. Yeah. And it's like, well, what do I do?
How do I really develop that character? What part of their character needs to be developed in the sub story? That's tricky for me. So I'm. Yay. Kale. If I could clap, I heard I'm afraid to,
Charity: [00:15:12] I know he's like doing good things at the very beginning that I
Hillary: [00:15:15] don't think he even realizes how good they are. And he's like, I'm just going to do this because it feels like the right thing to do.
I'm like you are right. It's the right thing to do. Weight alert.
Charity: [00:15:28] I love how, even though we hadn't listened to his, a lot of the things he said, really tied into what we were talking about earlier with eventually having to market your stories. And here he's going to have. A lead magnet for a
Hillary: [00:15:40] newsletter.
Well, and even balance. I mean, look at everything he's doing. He started off going over about music in my hair from a song I just started. I'm like, Oh my goodness. Kale is so talented. And then he says later, he's like, I'm writing a song a day on this thing. And I'm like, yeah, Holy cow. That's so busy.
Charity: [00:15:56] Yeah.
But that's a great way to get into the writing if you're making yourself a goal every day nano. Exactly. And the song a day. I mean,
Hillary: [00:16:05] yeah. And then we have Bruce, what was it? Oh, that's his character. That's going to be the, not the prologue. That was,
Charity: [00:16:11] what was that? The sub story was that it was the second set.
A new story.
Hillary: [00:16:16] No, I think that was the prologue. He said he was going to write the prologue or part of it from the point of view of Bruce to get to work through some of that. If we're wrong, we're sorry. Sorry. We'll listen to it later, but anyway,
how do we spell Bruce? He looks like fun, a Druid doing all that
Charity: [00:16:32] stuff. Yeah, it does. I love that he, that he was talking about where do you start? Because I think that's a problem for every writer. And a lot of times I will just start in some place. Just
Hillary: [00:16:45] go in
Charity: [00:16:46] later, fix it because you figured out it was the wrong
Hillary: [00:16:49] place.
Well, a lot of the time it's too early. Like even when you think you're starting late, it's too early. Yeah. And you just, you have to cut out so much to get to the action of the story that it's, it's surprising. There's, there've been several times where I'll write those with forgetting you. I wrote the story.
I changed that beginning point several times. Finally, I settled on where I wanted it. And then even after I was like in the final drafts of that, I'm like, maybe I should have started it here. That would have been really cool if she was like coming out of the police department or something like, Oh no, we're not doing
Charity: [00:17:26] It's funny though, because the one story I need to revise next Carrie's story. I actually think I waited too long to start. Oh really? You have some
Hillary: [00:17:35] story that needs to go
Charity: [00:17:36] in. Yeah. And I don't know if I'm going to label it as a prologue or chapter one. It, I guess technically it would be a prologue, but I had to back up,
Hillary: [00:17:44] is it going to be from a different character's point of view?
Charity: [00:17:46] I think it's in Carrie's point of view, but the story right now starts two weeks before Christmas at Jen's wedding. Oh. And the ProLon is way beyond the prologue is. 4th of July. That's the first time Eric proposed and she said, no, and you just see glimpses of that in other books, but you never get to see the conversation they had that fixed it so that they're still dating and still happy, but not engaged.
And I was like, I guess we really need to see that conversation going to our flashback section.
Hillary: [00:18:19] Um, that's. Yeah, the possibility you could do a time jump, um, neither charity or I love time jumps. So I thought that was funny that Kayla was like, Hey, yeah, I love time Tufts. I wonder if I can put these in that way, but everybody is different and sometimes if you handle them, well, they can go really well.
I'm okay with
Charity: [00:18:36] jumping forward in time. I have heard. Yeah. Like if, if you're, if you
Hillary: [00:18:41] label it. Yeah. I was actually going to name one that I've had just recently read with the, where the crawdads sing. Oh. You know, it's a very popular book right now and it's pretty good. I didn't love it. I may get some backlash and I didn't love it.
It wasn't even the flashbacks or the time jumps that really bothered me. There were other things about it that I just, yeah. I wasn't a fan of the character, really. And so that's just the thing where sometimes you just don't connect with that character and that's okay. She has written really well. And the whole descriptive part of the book was incredible.
The author did a great job, but it wasn't a story for me. So that's okay. Well, and I think part of it was because with that one, it was a mystery that was happening too. So there was mysterious stuff. Yeah. And those faster, and one goes slower. Cause one spans years. Yeah. And the other spans like. A month, maybe time jumps are fun.
Charity: [00:19:36] they are. That's part of my problem with the whole hand of Aqua was handling the passage of time. It wasn't even jumping back and forth, but I had two characters with two different timelines, timelines, simultaneous, but the events were happening at different rates. Yeah. And I
Hillary: [00:19:54] was like, Oh, I can't hear.
It's like four sections while she needs one. Yes. Yes.
Charity: [00:20:00] And. Posed problems. So that's why we're splitting it up. That's what I'm going to work on for nano. I'm going to work on those two books because together I have about 80,000 words already split between the two. And I need like, you know, probably another 80,000 between the two.
I would love to get two of them knocked out so that I can release them next year. That would be so cool. It would be awesome. It would make me happy. So. So that's my goal. When I finished these Christmas
Hillary: [00:20:27] stories. Yes. Get the Christmas stories are way before these are before November goals. Yes.
Charity: [00:20:33] Yes. Before November they must be done so that in November I can work on.
So I have to,
Hillary: [00:20:37] to work on two novellas that have to be done before Christmas. That's my goals, which you're my cozy mystery street and my Christmas one, my first Christmas one and before
Charity: [00:20:47] November. Yeah. Yeah. And we didn't do that. We totally have all month, so we can, we can do that. We'll, we'll keep on each other to do it.
I love it. Um, so I guess, have we
Hillary: [00:20:56] covered what we're leaving is prologue. That's the only other thing that I, that we didn't talk about. Oh yeah. We talked about all of this information beforehand that he wasn't sure if he should add in there. And I think, I feel like with that, we tend to do that. We're like, this is such good information.
And I think oftentimes it's just for us it's information that will only come out in the companion novel when everybody's, what, when your novel is wildly famous and the
Charity: [00:21:17] details, but it is important for the author to know it
Hillary: [00:21:20] is very important. And I think as much as that is, I think that's going to be something we'll.
We'll talk about at some point, but it has to kind of be okay. What's important to the story now, right? Like what gets them from this point to that point? Because the other stuff that the character needs to know, and it will affect the way they behave and how you write them. But oftentimes it just doesn't matter to the story and that's
Charity: [00:21:41] hard to let go of, yeah, it is hard to let go of, and, you know, for fantasy, this could be really important to write simply to really get into the world and build that world so that.
Kale knows the world inside and out. So Bruce is going to be awesome. We're excited about Bruce wherever he fits in.
Hillary: [00:21:59] Also another good way to have a lead magnet. Yes, exactly. Well,
Charity: [00:22:02] and you just never know because like I, one year for nano, I wrote an entire 60,000 words. About my characters that are Gaman and what happened to them when they left Syntech.
Wow. So it's about them being exiled to this planet and they go through some slavery, they overthrow that alien race and still their technology. And that's how they start traveling through the universe, looking for sundeck and how it eventually brings them back. But nobody else has ever seen any of that.
You know, probably never, ever will because it was just me. We're finding out who they were and working through it and
Hillary: [00:22:36] why and how they react.
Charity: [00:22:37] Yeah. Yeah. So good luck. Kale will be good for you and it'll make your world richer.
Hillary: [00:22:44] I think. Do you have any favorite side novels like that spin off novels? Yes.
Charity: [00:22:51] That I've written or that other people have written? I
Hillary: [00:22:53] don't care either
Charity: [00:22:53] one. I can't think of anything right now, but the favorite one I've written that has never seen the light of day that might one day is I actually wrote. The prehistory to Talia story. So it's about the major who created the cool.
Yeah. It's about that first binding of a human and a dragon and how they work together explains what their goal was. And it's got some romance in it and, you know, cause.
Hillary: [00:23:21] Anyway, we that's who we are. It's my
Charity: [00:23:23] favorite. That's my favorite because I mean, his wife ends up being a dragon before he's a dragon and, you know, there's, there's all this historical part that plays into the story.
And that will actually surface a lot in book three. If I ever have the guts to finish
Hillary: [00:23:40] writing yet, we'll get there. You will. That's exciting. Yeah. How about for me? Mine are all ones that I have not written because all the ones that I've written or will be writing are ones that probably will see the light of day because all of my characters are so connected.
It doesn't matter if it's another character, there'll be a book one day. Which is a bad place to be actually, you know, it's good all night, all these things are gonna work out, but no, some of the ones that come to mind are like, I love Twilight. I'm weird that way, but I love it. And so Bri, her novel is great.
I think that was, I thought that was really cool that she did that and I've totally read that and enjoyed it and wished it was longer. Um, and well, she does. I find out you're like, Aw, you're like, wait, this could have been so much more. She just wasn't the main character, I guess. Oh. One that I would really love to read would be Nevels.
Oh, okay. I would totally read that. Wouldn't you? I mean, he's got such an incredible story and you're like, You're bringing it. Let's do it.
Charity: [00:24:47] little
Hillary: [00:24:48] podcast. We want Nemo story. Definitely. She probably has it. I mean, haven't you hurt you? Um, like in her writing, she has like, Shelves full of notebooks, full of information that didn't make it into the story. Yeah. So I'm sure she probably a little puppy and she is back and I'm sure she has it somewhere in there.
She just, yeah.
Charity: [00:25:10] Well, it's funny. You, you brought up Twilight. I enjoy Twilight when I read them. They're not my favorite, but I loved the host. Don't get me started on the movie. The movie was absolutely horrible and they didn't do it. Was that awful. But I really enjoyed that book. It's science fiction for you.
It is science fiction. And for me, the part that I loved wasn't even the romance between Melanie and Jared, but it was Wanda. It was about the alien and her look at what it meant to be human and the ethics behind what they were doing. And just heard that psychological. Side to her. I loved, well, we have probably talked way longer than we should because we actually plan to sit down
Hillary: [00:25:53] and write when we were, I'd rather be writing or we love you, but we'd rather be writing.
Charity: [00:26:01] So we're going to log off and we really liked.
Hillary: [00:26:06] Can you remember? Exactly. I think it was like, keep writing or start writing.