Rainbow Snippets 4/22/17 – New Story!

Hi everyone! I missed the last couple weeks of snippetting due to, well, frankly, a horrible period of self-doubt.

I started a new novel at the beginning of April, and it involves BDSM, which is something I don’t have much experience with. And one of the MCs is asexual, which is something I do have personal experience with, but that’s making it oddly more difficult to write because it’s personal.

Anyway, it took me a few weeks to decide that I don’t hate it and I’m fairly sure I’m going to finish it at this point (29,000 words later…), so I’ll start sharing. I don’t even have a working title yet. Goodness. These are the opening six lines.




I spotted Alex immediately based on Hannah’s description. Tall, with light brown hair styled in that “just woke up” intentional mess. Or maybe it was actually just a mess. A purple t-shirt and track pants did nothing to disguise his impressive musculature. As he chatted with a woman at the desk, his smile was quick and frequent. Yeah, I could see why my sister had wanted me to come ogle him.




Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!). Visit the group for links to more snippets from LGBT works! While you’re over there, shoot me a friend request!

500 Followers Celebration Post!

I hit 500 followers on Twitter a few weeks ago and I posted a poll asking what my followers would like me to post in celebration. One of the things I offered was “story written by me at age 7.” I thought I had that story on my computer, but as it would turn out, I did not. So my plans to post it were postponed until I could go ransack my mother’s house. I still couldn’t find that story, HOWEVER, I found something even better (worse?)!

I played a lot of Sonic the Hedgehog as a child and nowadays I joke that my first stories were Sonic the Hedgehog fanfiction. The word “fanfiction” didn’t really exist 20+ years ago to my knowledge, but now it does, so that’s what they are.

Anyway, I found one of those stories in my mother’s basement. It’s mostly drawings, but there’s a coherent(ish) plot and some dialogue and a happy ending! It didn’t have a date on it, but based on the content around it in the box (my god, my mother has a lot of my old “art” in her basement) I was maybe 5ish? It’s entitled “SONIC GOS TO JAIL” and appears to tell the story of… well, I’ll let you guys interpret this 20-something-year-old masterpiece for yourselves.

Click here

I hope it gives you a chuckle at least!

Music and Writing – The Chicken or the Egg?

Every week, I do my best to participate in as many writing-related Twitter chats as I can. They’re fun, interactive, and they get my brain moving in different directions. A recent #writerspatch chat focused on playlists for writing. Questions included things like “How does music affect your writing process?” and “What is your favorite genre of music to listen to while writing, and why?” My favorite question was probably “Will your playlist affect your story, or will your story affect your playlist?”

For me, the answer is the latter. I listen to music almost constantly–probably around 12 hours a day. What I listen to depends on what I’m writing. When I wrote the first draft of Stray, over four years ago, I had just discovered Maroon 5, and I listened to their Hands All Over and Overexposed albums on a loop for months. Nothing else. No other bands. Nothing. When I first drafted the sequel to Stray, I listened to Bastille’s Bad Blood album on loop so many times I have flashbacks anytime I hear Dan Smith’s voice.

Since then, I’ve moved on to individualized playlists for characters. When I’m creating new characters, one of the first things I do for them is build a themed playlist. Andrew’s playlist is Fitz & the Tantrums, OK Go, Kongos, and Foster the People. Trystin gets classic rock and solo piano instrumentals. It helps me get into their heads. When I was pre-writing for NaNoWriMo, I spent an entire day at work switching between Pandora stations trying to figure out what my MC would listen to. After much station-hopping, I stumbled upon Milky Chance, Radical Face, The Head and the Heart, and The Decemberists, and knew I had found his home.

I’ve noticed recently that when I am working on a certain set of characters, my brain automatically craves the music I associate with them. Even if I’m not physically writing at the moment, if I’m at work or driving or just doing chores around the house, my brain (always writing in the background, let’s be real) just feels like listening to Ok Go. Or Mozart. Or Bastille. When I shift gears to work on a different WIP, whether I am consciously deciding or not, I suddenly crave a different kind of music.

What do you guys listen to when you write? Do you find that your playlists differ depending on the characters, or do you listen to music more for the overall ambience of a scene? Or does it even matter?

Rainbow Snippet – 1/14/17 – Andrew

Happy Saturday everyone! Here’s my Rainbow Snippet for the week!

This is Andrew’s POV. Trystin has come to visit him in the hospital…



“I have a spare bedroom. It’s yours if you take my job offer.”

It took a second for the words to sink in, and when they did, I had no idea how to respond. My mouth hung open as I stared at him.

“You look surprised.”

“Yeah,” I said. Here was a millionaire, or billionaire, I didn’t know, offering me a job and a place to live. I knew virtually nothing about him, and he knew even less about me.



 

Thanks for reading!!!

Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!). Visit the group for links to more snippets from LGBT works! While you’re over there, shoot me a friend request!

Becoming A Writer

Earlier this week, I read parts of a discussion on Josh Lanyon’s facebook page about changes in the writing/publishing world over the past few years (perhaps this is specific to the m/m romance genre, but perhaps not). Basically, Josh has noticed a trend of people going from readers to read-and-reviewers and then to writers themselves–the idea being that self-publishing and the internet have made it a lot easier for anyone to try their hand at the “writing” game.

I thought this was interesting. It made me think of how many different “paths” there are to become a writer, so I thought this week I would share an abbreviated history of myself as a writer.

When I was a wee sprite of a thing, I used to draw cartoons and tell stories on construction paper. These stories always featured Sonic the Hedgehog and his pals. I have no idea what the plots were, but since I was 4-5 years old, I imagine they were deeply introspective and profound. My mother still has these wonderful pieces of literature in a box in her basement. If anyone is interested, I’ll ask her to drag them out and scan me a few pages to share.

In second grade, I wrote stories in school for a project (the whole class did). I recall getting a compliment on one. It was about a fox. I also wrote one about a jellyfish whose kitchen cabinets were haunted, I think.

Fast forward to age 11, when I discovered anime.

…Need I say more? I think a lot of people in my age group have similar origin stories.

Within two days of discovering Dragonball Z, I wrote my first Dragonball Z fanfic. Things spiralled out from there. I wrote and published on fanfiction.net . The stories are still there. Don’t ask me for my screen name because I will take that secret to my grave.

The point to all this is that, for me, writing has always been in me. I enjoy reading, yes. If there is a writer in existence who does not enjoy reading, I feel sorry for them. But writing has been my first and foremost passion since I was old enough to string letters into words on paper. Writing is ingrained in the very fibers of my being. I write for myself and no one else–I have never cared if I have an audience, never cared if people liked my writing, never felt the need to seek validation from the opinions of others. It’s just something I do. Eat, sleep, write. I write, therefore I am. Or perhaps, I am, therefore I write?

But I know a lot of people don’t function that way. Not everyone has been writing since they could hold a crayon. A lot of people make that reader-to-writer transformation. A lot of people have an idea in their head for twenty years but never write a word.

So I’m curious. For those of you who write, how did you end up on this path? Are you a lifelong writer, or fairly new to the process? What nudged you to finally put words on the page for that idea you’ve been harboring? Let me know in the comments!

Rainbow Snippet 2 – Andrew

Happy Saturday everyone, and happy holidays! Here’s my Rainbow Snippet for the week!

POV SWITCH! This is first-person POV from Andrew, the man Trystin was thinking about in last week’s snippet. Andrew has a tough life. Poor guy.



I looked at the man’s reflection as he looked at me. His slouchy presence looked wrong there, next to the clean tile walls and sleek black countertops. On the outside, I looked right—I cleaned up well—but my insides were a turbulent sea. Alcohol made it easy for me to kiss strangers, go home with strangers. Alcohol naturally made me more physical. But nothing ever quelled the fear and guilt that came from stealing.



 

Thanks for reading! Don’t forget to check out the group at the link above to find snips from other authors! Check back next week for more.

Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).

Visit the group for links to more snippets from LGBT works! While you’re over there, shoot me a friend request!

The Road So Far

In my initial post back in October, I said I would be keeping you, my lovely reader(s), apprised of my writing progress, publication attempts, etc. Initially I did not think I would take NaNoWriMo so seriously, but I did, so there has been no forward momentum in the publication process thus far. My plan is to get the manuscript sent out to at least one publisher by the end of 2016. If that means I send the email on December 31 at 11:59 PM, I will consider that goal a success.

To get us all caught up, this is what has happened in my writing/revising/publishing process so far:

I started writing this thing in 2012, and the characters were in my head for at least a year or two before that. I wrote a large portion of it over the summer between school years in 2012, and then didn’t touch it for six months. I finished the first draft in 2013.

I then revised it, and revised it again, and revised it again, and wrote the first draft of a sequel, started to revise the sequel, decided I hated the entire sequel, trashed it, revised the first novel yet again, wrote another draft of the sequel, and now here we are, three years and four revisions later, getting ready to finally try to publish it. I never felt motivated to publish it until recently, so I’ve just been dilly-dallying. My next novel will not take three years to get submission-ready.

Anyway.

I am going to tweak it yet again; just one tiny little thing about one MC that’s always bugged me and I finally figured out why and how to fix it (thank god it’s fixable with a small tweak). Then I will be done.

In preparation for the publication attempts, I have: begun paying more attention to who publishes the M/M romance books I read. I’m investigating every publisher I see. I’m following publishers, editors, and authors on Twitter (I created a Twitter specifically to do so). I’m entering giveaways, joining reading lists, and of course, reading more in the genre I write. (contemporary gay romance)

These are all things the internet has told me I must do in order to prepare to publish a book. And so far I’m finding it helpful.

Now I just need to figure out how to write a synopsis. God save me.