the things i find in my drafts.

8

Persona 5 Protagonist - Habits & Mannerisms

♡ soft asks ♡

honey: what’s your favorite memory you made this year? 
sunshine: 3 things you do to relax
rain: put your music on shuffle and give a 5 song playlist
lace: what’s your favorite piece of clothing?
flowers: what’s your favorite outdoor activity?
roses: what’s your favorite perfume or cologne?
sunsets: give 3 movie recommendations
blankets: what’s your night routine?
thunder: what’s your favorite instrument?
ink: favorite thing you’ve written?
heartbeat: who’s your best friend?
sunrise: kisses or hugs?
fairy lights: who was the last person you talked to?
sugar: what’s your favorite snack?
wind: what’s your favorite season?
trees: favorite thing about your hometown?
smiles: who do you go to for comfort?
skyline: the sun, the moon, or the stars?
lavender: what color do you find most calming? 

Drafting: The Theory of Shitty First Drafts

Writing books often exhort you to “write a shitty first draft,” but I always resisted this advice. After all,

  1. I was already writing shitty drafts, even when I tried to write good ones. Why go out of my way to make them shittier?
  2. A shitty first draft just kicks the can down the road, doesn’t it? Sooner or later, I’d have to write a good draft—why put it off?
  3. If I wrote without judging what I wrote, how would I make any creative choices at all?
  4. That first draft inevitably obscured my original vision, so I wanted it to be at least slightly good.
  5. Writing something shitty meant I was shitty.

So for years, I kept writing careful, cramped, painstaking first drafts—when I managed to write at all. At last, writing became so joyless, so draining, so agonizing for me that I got desperate: I either needed to quit writing altogether or give the shitty-first-draft thing a try.

Turns out everything I believed about drafting was wrong.

For the last six months, I’ve written all my first drafts in full-on don’t-give-a-fuck mode. Here’s what I’ve learned so far:

“Shitty first draft” is a misnomer

A rough draft isn’t just a shitty story, any more than a painter’s preparatory sketch is just a shitty painting. Like a sketch, a draft is its own kind of thing: not a lesser version of the finished story, but a guide for making the finished story.

Once I started thinking of my rough drafts as preparatory sketches, I stopped fretting over how “bad” they were. Is a sketch “bad”? And actually, a rough draft can be beautiful the same way a sketch is beautiful: it has its own messy energy.

Don’t try to do everything at once

People who make complex things need to solve one kind of problem before they can solve others. A painter might need to work out where the big shapes go before they can paint the details. A writer might need to decide what two people are saying to each other before they can describe the light in the room or what those people are doing with their hands.

I’d always embraced this principle up to a point. In the early stages, I’d speculate and daydream and make messy notes. But that freedom would end as soon as I started drafting. When you write a scene, I thought, you have to start with the first word and write the rest in order. Then it dawned on me: nobody would ever see this! I could write the dialogue first and the action later; or the action first and the dialogue later; or some dialogue and action first and then interior monologue later; or I could write the whole thing like I was explaining the plot to my friend over the phone. The draft was just one very long, very detailed note to myself. Not a story, but a preparatory sketch for a story. Why not do it in whatever weird order made sense to me?

Get all your thoughts onto the page

Here’s how I used to write: I’d sit there staring at the screen and I’d think of something—then judge it, reject it, and reach for something else, which I’d most likely reject as well—all without ever fully knowing what those things were. And once you start rejecting thoughts, it’s hard to stop. If you don’t write down the first one, or the second, or the third, eventually your thought-generating mechanism jams up. You become convinced you have no thoughts at all.

When I compare my old drafts with my new ones, the old ones look coherent enough. They’re presentable as stories. But they suck as drafts, because I can’t see myself thinking in them. I have no idea what I wanted that story to be. These drafts are opaque and airless, inscrutable even to me, because a good 90% of what I was thinking while I wrote them never made it onto the page.

These days, most of my thoughts go onto the page, in one form or another. I don’t waste time figuring out how to say something, I just ask, “what are you trying to say here?” and write that down. Because this isn’t a story, it’s a plan for a story, so I just need the words to be clear, not beautiful. The drafts I write now are full of placeholders and weird meta notes, but when I read them, I can see where my mind is going. I can see what I’m trying to do. Consequently, I no longer feel like my drafts obscure my original vision. In fact, their whole purpose is to describe that vision.

Drafts are memos to future-you

To draft effectively, you need a personal drafting style or “language” to communicate with your future self (who is, of course, the author of your second draft). This language needs to record your ideas quickly so it can keep up with the pace of your imagination, but it needs to do so in a form that will make sense to you later. That’s why everyone’s drafts look different: your drafting style has to fit the way your mind works.

I’m still working mine out. Honestly, it might take a while. But recently, I started writing in fragments. That’s just how my mind works: I get pieces of sentences before I understand how to fit them together. Wrestling with syntax was slowing me down, so now I just generate the pieces and save their logical relationships for later. Drafting effectively means learning these things about yourself. And to do that, you can’t get all judgmental. You can’t fret over how you should be writing, you just gotta get it done.

Messy drafts are easier to revise

I find that drafting quickly and messily keeps the story from prematurely “hardening” into a mute, opaque object I’m afraid to change. I no longer do that thing, for instance, where I endlessly polish the first few paragraphs of a draft without moving on. Because how do you polish a bunch of fragments taped together with dashes? A draft that looks patently “unfinished” stays malleable, makes me want to dig my hands in and move stuff around.

You already have ideas

Sitting down to write a story, I used to feel this awful responsibility to create something good. Now I treat drafting simply as documenting ideas I already have—not as creation at all, but as observation and description. I don’t wait around for good words or good ideas. I just skim off whatever’s floating on the surface and write it down. It’s that which allows other, potentially better ideas to surface.

As a younger writer, my misery and frustration perpetuated themselves: suppressing so many thoughts made my writing cramped and inhibited, which convinced me I had no ideas, which made me even more afraid to write lest I discover how empty inside I really was. That was my fear, I guess: if I looked squarely at my innocent, unvetted, unvarnished ideas, I’d see how bad they truly were, and then I’d have to—what, pack up and go home? Never write again? I don’t know. But when I stopped rejecting ideas and started dumping them onto the page, the worst didn’t happen. In fact, it was a huge relief.


Next post: the practice of shitty first drafts

Ask me a question or send me feedback!

Voltron actor AU where everything’s the same but Voltron is a live-action TV show and the paladins are actors:

  • Their names are the same in real life. They go by different names in the show. 
  • Keith and Lance still have a “rivalry.” Red and Blue didn’t originally have it, but when the cast first met and the directors saw how Keith and Lance interacted, they wanted to write it in. 
  • Shiro’s arm is still a prosthetic, although the scar is fake.
    • sometimes the makeup crew forgets the scar. literally no one notices until it’s the end of filming
    • “Shiro…” “Huh?” “…they forgot the sca–” “are yOU FUC–”
  •  Shiro, Keith, Lance, Hunk, and Allura all do their own stunts. 
    • Pidge is only 17 and their mom won’t sign the waiver for them to do their own stunts. 
  • No one really knows how their little production company was able to afford hiring Allura, who’s a big time actress and super talented.
    • they eventually find out that she’s a giant mecha/space nerd and came to /them/ asking for a role and willing to do it for free
  • No one really knows if Coran has a script or if he was told to just say whatever
  • Lance calls Keith “Red” so often that Keith thinks Lance has forgotten his name
    • he hasn’t.
  • The paladins, Allura, Coran, and basically all the actors boycott after season 2, demanding retribution for the way they wrote Hunk and Lance’s characters. 
  • Hunk has an engineering degree in real life.  
  • Matt isn’t Pidge’s real life brother, but when they first meet it goes something like: “baby sister!” “big brother!” and they end up inseparable.
    • Pidge’s mother is known for calling Pidge at work just to talk to her son, Matt 
  • Hunk and Shay’s on-screen chemistry was actually a real thing. Shay was cast at the same time that she was working in the costume/design department, so they’d known each other since the show started. 
    • they’re dating now
  • Every time Lance’s character hits on Allura’s on-screen Lance spends five minutes defending Blue’s character after filming 
    • “he just craves attention, okay? he just wants love!! he’s smart and beautiful and wants to belonG”
    • despite this, Lance is basically his character minus that shoddy writing in season 2
  • Keith and Lance have their own shipping fanbase. It starts out with just their characters, but then Some Mysterious Person starts taking candids between sets and posting them online and klance is born
    • it’s Pidge. Pidge runs five fan accounts. 
    • the pictures are super incriminating, but no one shows them to Lance or Keith
    • there’s a betting pool on when they’ll get together
  • Keith gets super into his roles and ends up genuinely upset after filming the scenes where the princess reacts badly to Red being part Galra. 
    • Allura gives him a 15 minute hug after
  • Bonding Moment Discourse is actually a thing. There was a prop malfunction on set while they were filming and the directors told them to stay put, so Lance ended up being Cradled for a solid half hour.
    • later, they find out that they could’ve moved and just chilled for that time, instead of actually holding each other.
    • “I get it Keith, I get it. You just wanted to hold me. Who doesn’t amiright??”   
4

Note-Taking

Hey guys! So I’ve been receiving questions regarding my note-taking style and strategy for quite some time now but I believe I have never answered them in detail. The good news is, I finally decided to make a post about this (plus, I had fun making the graphics :D). Note that I am a visual learner, so my note-taking methods may not be effective for some of you, but I hope you can all learn something.

Class Notes

I only use one notebook for all my class notes, an A4 grid notebook whose pages I divide into two columns.

I use the outline method for in-class notes, which means I write information chronologically, in the order that they are taught. Some teachers do not have properly structured presentations/lessons (good thing my physics teacher does) so when in need, I use arrows to connect related information.

Abbreviations to me are one of the most important things to master when taking notes. I personally make them up as I go along. Some examples of abbreviations I use are:

  • w/c - which
  • w/ - with
  • cpd - compound
  • envt - environment
  • digenz - digestive enzyme

It might be confusing, but to me, knowing the context and part of speech are enough for all abbreviations to be comprehended.

Here’s an example: ‘Indonesia’s tsunami pre-warning system is made up of two types of components’ could become ‘Indo’s snmi pre-warn sys 2 type comp’.

After Class

The first thing I would do is highlight keywords and terminology (and sometimes formulas). For physics, since my teacher is relatively succinct, I don’t really highlight, but for humanities and biology, I look for words that would be expected by a mark scheme, words that are crucial to the understanding of each particular piece of information.

I would then check if the material taught coincides with the syllabus, and if not, note down any points that are missing or have yet to be taught. You could write these on a post it or on the syllabus itself, but I prefer to highlight the syllabus’ pdf file.

Rewritten Notes

My rewritten notes are arranged based on the order they appear in the syllabus unless there are pieces of information that are related to more than one topic.

I use a black pen for rewriting notes as well as colored pens to write keywords and terminology only. I know some people who write whole sentences in colored pens but to me that is ineffective; we all have our own learning styles. When making tables, I usually use different colors for different columns (see the table for different types of radiation above) which is most often the color I associate with each word. For example, water would be blue, ocean would be a darker shade, ice would be a lighter shade, and water vapor would be purple.

I still abbreviate words in my rewritten notes, but they’re not as condensed as the ones in my class notes. Another thing I find helpful is leaving a bit of space between separate points especially if the page doesn’t have a lot of diagrams. I can’t think linearly, so I can’t remember super lengthy bullet points.

I use mildliners and a drawing pen to make my diagrams (more of these in my biology notes) but I only start with pencil if it’s a complex diagram. I rarely highlight my rewritten notes, but even if I do, it’s usually only the headings and formulas.

I don’t have a rough draft for my notes, but I try to visualize the layout. I try to alternate between words and pictures/diagrams so that when I’m sitting for an exam, all I have to do is imagine that I’m looking at that page and I can remember where everything is.

Well, that’s all from me. I hope that this information could be of some use to every single one of you. Don’t hesitate to ask me questions if you’re confused about note-taking or any other problems you might have :)

Top 20 Larry fics in 2016 over 100k by kudos on Ao3

* criteria; completed in 2016 and not part of a fic series

1. Soft Hands, Fast Feet, Can’t Lose by dolce_piccante for docilelou
2. California Sold by isthatyoularry
3. To Be Loved To Be In Love by Angel_Dust
4. Shake Me Down by AGreatPerhaps12
5. Nameless Night by green_feelings
6. wings to break your fall by karamelised
7. Hiding Place by alivingfire
8. Time Bomb by ThisSentimentalHeart
9. Fight For Me by Mie1412
10. Bloodline by banana_louis
11. Never Be by cherrystreet
12. And You’re My Ever After by NiamJenn1994
13. Luscious blood by Deidei
14. run away home by hattalove
15. Into the wild by Deidei
16. Lights Will Guide You Home by louisxharry1
17. Only You Can Be My Alpha by wubwubnparmaham
18. Fake It Till You Make It by thealmightyavocado
19. Dominus. by SS98
20. you are in love by wildestdreams

The Autumnal Equinox: Finding balance as the cycle ends

Originally posted by pretty-gifs

With the happy, chaotic vibes of summer coming to a close, we welcome in the more introspective part of the year. It is a time to withdraw, to cleanse, to give thanks for what we have grown in the year and prepare that which we are ready to discard on the Feast of Ashes in October. 

Often this is a time to gather with those you care about, or simply revel in your love of self and reflect on the dropping temperatures and changing leaves. The bounty of the late summer garden gives way to roots and gourds and the last of the herb garden offerings. 

Like the Spring Equinox, this period marks a time of equal day and night, making it a good time for magic that relates to reining in bad habits, finding peace in a busy lifestyle, or bringing harmony to a household in strife. Unlike the Spring Equinox, however, which focuses on bringing balance to restore energy and vigor for growth the Autumnal Equinox welcomes you to bring balance for a proper rest. It’s energy asks you to appreciate everything you have done, big or small, and prepare for the darker half of the year by gathering up all of your grief, fear, anxiety and exhaustion in bundles before you so you can be ready to let them go. For we cannot release what we do not need if you don’’t first examine what we have and who we are. 

I will share with you some of my traditions for this time of year, to give you an idea of the kind of productive magical and mundane work you can do to prepare yourself for the waning light. As someone with SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder), I find that my transition into Fall is very important to my mental health as it reminds me to let go of what I cannot control. 

Some good Autumnal Equinox traditions:

🍁 Just like Spring Cleaning, you can do some Fall Cleaning and prepping your house for the colder months. Put out your cold weather clothes (if appropriate for the time) and go through your warm weather things to bag up what doesn’t fit anymore or is unwanted anymore to give to secondhand stores or repurpose into other things (old t-shirts make nice dusting clothes~!), check windows for drafts, clean the fireplace and chimney if you have one, polish up your kitchen and pantry, sweep and mop floors and reset any wards or protection magics you have on your space. 

🍁 If you are so inclined, the first day of Fall is a perfect day to decorate for Halloween and for the season! You can make a ritual out of it like I do by sipping hot apple cider and playing some spooky or seasonally associated music (I tend to gravitate toward richer, warmer folk music around this time of year!)

🍁 This is the second harvest holiday, and I personally strongly link this time of year to apples, so you could go apple picking and afterwards make an apple ie charmed to bring peace and happiness to those who eat it! Or if you picked a lot of apples make a happiness applesauce! You can also slice up apples and cook them in the oven to make apple chips for teas or just to snack on.

🍁 If you are looking to bring balance into some aspect of your life, consider setting up a white candle and a black candle on your altar (or perhaps a yellow/gold and blue/silver set would work too!) As you work your magic for the day, the candles will invoke the equinox spirit into your working! If you cannot have candles, you can use a sunstone and a moonstone, or you could use clay or paper colored with your desired hues depicting balance. 

🍁 If the weather is fair and you have one near you, I find that visiting a river or stream is particularly nice as they are a body of Water, which is linked to emotions and also to the properties of motion and overcoming obstacles. If you find that you are having trouble coming to terms with some aspect of yourself or an event in your life, spending time near a river or placing a river stone on your altar might help you. 

These are just a few ideas of how to bring the Equinox energies into your home and to use them in your practice. Other popular activities include feasting, offering appropriate gifts to spirits of the land and home, having a bon fire, and tying natural strings to trees  as a form of wish making.

little twenty one pilots things i really dislike

as much as i really love twenty one pilots, here are some things i really dislike, mostly regarding the fanbase:

- ‘smol bean’ 

- ‘ukulele screamo’

- ‘clique as frick’

- ‘fren’ is hella cringey, even when tyler says it

- .:pêøpłê tÿpīñg êvęrÿthįńg łìkė thîš:. 

- “DADDY!” comments

- fans thinking top are the only band/artist making real music on the radio

- fans who hate on other fans for being a newer fan, usually the same fans who complain about top being popular

- fans who complain that top don’t play enough old songs live, ignoring the fact that emotional roadshow was literally promoting the album blurryface (i do kinda get that with tour de columbus though, but still they did play a lot of oldies)

- fans who hate on other fans for also liking k-pop groups (i just really don’t get the hate here and i’ve never even tried to listen to k-pop lmao)

- fans who stalk/harass the boys and their families, eg: finding josh’s parents house and taking photos outside of it, even if done respectfully it’s still weird and creepy

- how terrible the pit can be at some shows, pushing, punching, no etiquette whatsoever

- a lot of merch is kinda ugly to me, the designs have gotten better more recently though

feel free to add your own things

friendly-neighborhood-hufflepuff  asked:

Hi! I'm very curious as to what Hunger Pains actually is. I know it's a book but as far as I know it's Hunky Dory here's some very nice plot, let's get down to business TO DEFEAT.. THE HU- I mean- ANYWAYS I know next to nothing about your book and I have a Need To Know Things.

Hunger Pangs (don’t worry, my husband calls it Pains all the time and I have the draft manuscript On. My. Wall.) was a shit post written just over a year ago after @jeneelestrange goaded me into it.

(source)

If you go through my tags #Hunger Pangs and #the vampire werewolf thing, you will finds lots and lots of meta and the occasional snippet of fiction. Some of it is very NSFW, and has been marked as such. I hope to get most of that archived on Ao3 at some point for easier perusal, I just haven’t had the time yet.

I will request that you be careful when typing #Hunger Pangs into the tumblr search function, as the tag is unfortunately used predominantly by eating disorder blogs, often ones not aimed towards recovery. This is something I was not aware of at the time when I started tagging the book and I’ve since started using HPangs (also Phangs) more often and am working my way back through the tags to fix this. If you wish to look at things pertaining only to my work through that tag, the url link is here: https://thebibliosphere.tumblr.com/tagged/hunger%20pangs

By request there is going to be two versions of the book, one with kink, and one without for those who prefer more fluff than smut in their reading repertoire. This is something I plan to do for all my future novels as well for those who are interested in my work, but don’t necessarily want to read about kink. 

The whole thing was supposed to be me just flipping tropes on their head for funsies, with the original draft intended to be a short 10k satire of the paranormal romance trope where Totally-Average-Girl gets sucked into a magical world and becomes the heated love interest of two usually “dominant” supernatural males and a toxic love triangle ensues (among other things). It was a trope I had to work with a lot in the industry as an editor, and became somewhat of a pet peeve of mine. So much so that somewhere along the line this fun little satire turned into a full 60k+ manuscript with happy, healthy polyamory instead, where nobody dies. Because that is also a trope in bi poly romance novels that can fuck right the fuck off as well. I mean, one of them’s already kinda technically dead?? But he’s fine with it.

The focus is on three main characters, a vampire called Vlad, a werewolf Nathan, and a being of as of yet undisclosed species who goes by the name of Ursula, and how they are brought together in a fantasy AU regency styled world torn apart by war and prejudice. If Game of Thrones ascribes to the idea that the world is dark and full of terrors, Hunger Pangs is the weird cryptid fancier asking where you can find them and are they looking to date anyone right now.

It’s ultimately a story of struggle, betrayal and power. But above all else Hunger Pangs is about love, romantic or otherwise, and the lengths people will go to in order to protect what is good and right in the world. It’s love as an act of bravery and defiance. And also punching fascists with your werewolf boyfriend, but that was honestly just a happy narrative coincidence that happened to coincide with the absolute shit show 2017 has turned out to be. 

It’s heavy on puns, satirical commentary and at times, moments of outright defiance.

Author friends who have read the raw manuscript have described it as being, “like reading the queer-goth-punk love child of Terry Pratchett and the Addams Family filled with hope and rage” and honestly I’ve never been more proud or terrified of anything I’ve ever done in my entire life.

I’m hoping to have the pre-order on Amazon up by the end of October, with full release planned for sometime around Christmas, provided my health holds out and I don’t end up needing more emergency surgery. So far the odds are looking good :)

The artwork for the covers has been designed by our very own @whales-and-witchcraft/ @umicorms and is just, I have no words for how much I love it. I can’t wait to share it with all of you. I’m so excited.

Terrified. 

But excited.