Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Comic: How Angry Birds Saved My Book

While I was writing my book I was introduced to the game Angry Birds. At first I thought it would be the end of my novel. Then I discovered something. Each time I played I came up with story lines and plot developments for the characters.
So I kept playing.
And I kept writing.
It sounds crazy I know, but what can I say? The game helps me focus.
Here is a comic that illustrates how the events occurred.









Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Realist or Dreamist?


The everyday struggle of a writer.


Everyone at some point must make the decision whether they are going to live in their real lives or their dream lives. In my dream life, I am writing in a cafe next to the Eiffel Tower. In my real life, I am stuck in traffic watching the birds fly by. In my dream life, I live in a big house on the hills with my happy family. In my real life, I am writing in my room, by myself mostly. In my dream life, I am eating Steak Diane, shrimp and mashed potatoes. In my real life, I am eating peanut butter toast.


I would venture to say that most writers live in their dream worlds. And most people live in other people's dream worlds. For example, every time you read a book, watch a movie or a T.V. show, you are diving into a world that someone else has created.


I would label myself what I call a dreamist, someone who chooses to believe that their dream world can become their real world. Some may call this idealism but I think dreamists world's are highly fantasized and far more romanticized. I am also a realist however and so there is a war going on inside my head as to which world wins.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Chapter 1: Background


The shattered mirror in Nalia's room.






SMALL SPOILER ALERT: READ AFTER YOU'VE READ CHAPTER 1 

This chapter is somewhat based on my own experiences. I remember being Nalia's age and trying to understand my father's sudden absence. He was a business man and traveled frequently before I was born. Then he got sick. Most of his absences were due to his illness and having to be away in the hospital. I wish someone would have told me what in the world was happening. Instead I had to wonder in secret.


 I guess that's when all the writing started. My mother said I was always writing stories. It was my 5th grade teacher, Ms. Jefferey who told me I may have a knack for it. She changed my world. I know this because she is, out of the many teacher's I've had, the one whose name I can remember.


People ask me where I come up with all the ideas for my book. When you have been living inside your head for as long as I have, it's not that far fetched. I was definitely one of those weird kids who got teased (A LOT) and found it difficult to make friends.  Hence I just made up my own friends and my own stories. I am twenty-six now and not much has really changed.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Writer's Drink

Me gulping down tea. I like to keep it classy.

I moved back to Los Angeles from London (moved there for grad school) last year, and whilst I was there all I drank was Twinings Lemon and Ginger Tea. At first I would only drink it when I was sick (I was still highly opposed to tea at this point). Then I found myself drinking it even when I wasn't sick.


I have come to the conclusion that every writer needs a good 'writer's drink'.
This is my weapon of choice.
Try it, it will change your life.

You Know You're A Writer When...




























Click on book images to read the text. It's good.


I must have it. 
I was in a book store several weeks ago at Venice Beach and came across this book. It was like a great big giant light bulb went off. I was about to get it, but the $9.95 price tag was a bit too high at the time.
I shall cradle you in my arms one day.
On a curious note, are there really 10 ways to say the color blue?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Nalia's World


Nalia has been swimming in my head for many years. I just had to stop being so scared about failing and just write. I write because it keeps away the tears. I write because it makes me feel that all is right with the world. Perhaps this is all I can really ask for.
I would love to be able to support myself, but maybe this is asking too much.

When I look around I see aspects of Nalia's world all around me. I see the characters, the themes and the inspirations.

I will try to stick to themes and characters surrounding the book, but I won't promise anything. I may peer my head in scratching and fighting to get in, but that's just how I am.

Unemployment

Unemployment can do lot's of things. It can make you take jobs you wouldn't normally, it can make you utterly depressed or it can make you do things you never thought you could do (things you weren't brave enough to do because you had the comfort of a job). My situation is a combination of the last two.

    Well technically I'm not unemployed, I have a part-time job working at a high school. This does not pay nearly enough for all the bills that come along with living in Los Angeles. I have a grad degree in teaching. That was the plan, to become a teacher. I was going to have my own classroom and set up educational learning posters and tell all the children to sit quietly in their seats.
Yea that didn't happen.
Apparently we like to spend more money on war than we do on education, hence there are no jobs for new teachers (and older ones).

     So I got a job working for an after school program, running the computer lab and detention. I was scared at first, working in a high school, I was used to working with preschoolers and 1st graders. They won me over though and I love the kids I work with, I just wish I could do it full time.

      So all this free time allowed me to do what I was going to do later in my career: write.

 I always knew I wanted to write children's books so this just happened sooner rather than later.

This blog will venture into the crazy world that I created in my first novel Nalia and the Potion Maker.