Sunday, 16 July 2017

#CampNaNoWriMo weekly vlog 1-2 | #amwriting

Hey, guys! It's been a while since I've updated my blog. But I have an excuse this time. Ever since July started I've been participating in the Camp NaNoWriMo challenge (link). My goal for the month of July is to write 30k words of my current WIP (and hopefully get that 50% discount on Scrivener).

I'm trying to vlog weekly about my Camp NaNoWriMo experience and I'm really enjoying it so far. Of course, I've faced some difficulties as well. I had to learn some new tricks in Sony Vegas, the program that I'm using to edit most of my video. And I can't quite yet figure out what to say or not to say in my vlogs, which results in them being very long. But I'm learning as I go.

As for the writing part of the whole deal, I'm a little bit behind, but still feeling positive. I'm not trying to catch up anymore, but I'm writing every day and enjoying the process immensely.

And yes, there are a lot of cat clips in these vlogs. :3

Here are the first two videos! Hope you enjoy watching these vlogs just as much as I've enjoyed making them.




Friday, 30 June 2017

My Master List of Projects | #amwriting

For the last few weeks, I've been decluttering my room and trying to organize my belongings. Those who follow me on Twitter probably know that I've even started making a catalogue of my home library. A project that will probably take me a few months since most of the books I own are old Soviet and early post-Soviet editions, which means I'll have to manually add them to the database. By the end of this project, I'll finally know how many books I own exactly. So that's something to look forward to.

I've also been organizing the files on my PC and Google Drive where I keep most of my writing projects and thought that it would be interesting to make a list of all of my projects so that it'd be easier for me to know what I'm supposed to be working on and track my progress. That's why I've decided to write this blog post and share it with you guys. I have to warn you though that I have a lot of projects and just came up with another one after a short Twitter conversation with a fellow writer Bethany. She gave me an idea for a comic strip, I jotted it down, very excited to draw it, and then all of a sudden other ideas started flooding in. So I had to spend the rest of the morning writing short dialogues for comics and making notes. But I'll tell you more about this project later on in this post. I'll make a list and write something about every project so I hope you enjoy reading this.



Sunday, 4 June 2017

My "Fake" Personality

I've already vented about this once on Facebook but I figured it wouldn't hurt writing a blog post as well just to gather my thoughts and see where I'm standing.

My therapist thinks that my personality is "fake". That I only have a lot of interests because it's a way of making myself interesting enough for other people so that maybe they'd want to talk to me and be friends.

It doesn't count that I've always been that way and that when pursuing my interests I don't think about other people. I'm caught up in the moment, engaged and fascinated by whatever it is that I'm doing. And when I'm sharing my interests I'm not thinking about how I'm being perceived at the moment.

How can all this be fake?

My therapist once told me to do an exercise where I was supposed to "explore" my true self. Somehow she led me to the conclusion that without my interests I don't exist.

And I can only find my true self through mindfulness and meditation.

I tried asking her to give me some examples of "real" personalities so that at least I knew what I'm looking for but she said that I'll have to figure that out for myself.

Long story short, I'm not talking to that therapist anymore and I have no intentions of giving up on my interests. Now I know better, and I no longer think that I won't exist without them. I'll still be there but it'll be a terribly boring existence.


Sunday, 21 May 2017

Turning Memories into Story Plots | Halcja's Podcast #1

Hi, everyone. I've posted the first episode of my writing podcast yesterday and since it was scripted, I thought, why not post the script as a blog post? So here you have it. There were some spontaneous bits in the podcast but I've tried to even it all up. Hope you enjoy it and find it helpful and interesting!




I've noticed two main ways how you can fuel your writing inspiration, using your own life. And I've also seen the two of them combined in a bad way but I'll talk about that later on.


How to write stories from your own experience

1. Non-Fiction. Essays and Autobiographies. The first way is to just write down your memories of the past events, exactly how it all happened, or at least how much of it you remember. In this case, you'll be using the first person POV and past tense. It's similar to writing a diary but with adding more structure to the stories. You can have your main focus on the events, and also elaborate on your own thoughts or feelings, and speculations about the future. When it comes to storytelling, I think that you can apply here most rules of creative writing (show, don't tell: cut out filter words; don't overuse adverbs etc). The only difference being that these stories actually happened in real life and you are both the narrator and the protagonist.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Internet Drama and Support

I was going to write a blog post about internet drama because it just so happened that I had to block two people on facebook this week. But when I opened a new draft a funny thought ran across my mind.

I don't need this anymore. I don't feel like venting and complaining. No more need to take screenshots of comment wars and post them on my FB page.

And the reason for this change in heart is that this time I know that it won't go unnoticed and ignored. I know that if I write on my FB page that I'm having a bad day or that something has happened there'll be people who'll support and cheer me up.

When I was blogging and using social media in my native language I'd oftentimes feel  that I could write just about any horrid thing you can think of, even a blog post consisting solely of the f-word, and still won't get any reaction from my readers, who were mostly people that I actually knew in real life, so it wasn't like I was expecting this huge wave of feedback from complete strangers. And that was frustrating to the point when I'd quit blogging for months at a time.

I would sometimes feel like I was loosing my mind. I was writing about things that genuinely concerned me, so being ignored most of the time wasn't that great for my mental state.

The funniest thing was that in private conversations people would admit that they actually enjoyed reading all of my comment drama. And they liked reading my blog. But I only found out about it after posting on my FB that I'd given up and deleted it.

But I'm glad that I gave up. I now have other projects that are already giving me more feedback and satisfaction that I'd ever dreamed of. And I know that my hard work won't be all in vain.

A little support and kindness go a long way.

At first, I thought that I won't post this to my blog because it seemed shorter than what I'd expected it to be. I wrote the draft in the blogger app that I don't usually use. So I thought I'd just tweet about it because I still want to get these thoughts out of my head. But after thinking about it for a little while I've decided to post it as a final tribute to my former internet drama obsessed self.


Saturday, 8 April 2017

"Saving my dead father"



As some of you may know, I've recently uploaded the first episode of my podcast in English, where I elaborated a little on why exactly I decided to start writing fiction in English.

But what's been really bothering me for a while now was why have I bothered with all of my Ukrainian projects for so long before switching my keyboard from UK to EN. Over the time I've had a lot of projects that were aimed at promoting Ukrainian language and culture or creating content in Ukrainian. I've had a couple of blogs and rpg-forums, a youtube channel and I even volunteered for a few translation projects. There are at least a handful of Wikipedia articles translated by yours truly and I've also subtitled some TED talks. I'll stop here before it starts looking like I'm bragging, but I did a lot of stuff which could put me in the category of a patriot and language enthusiast. But I'm not... Not really.

Thursday, 23 March 2017

10k Celebration Post | #amwriting

This week I've hit a new milestone. I know that 10k words might not seem like alot but considering that it's the first time I'm actually serious about my writing project, I see it as quite an accomplishment.

What I've got so far.

• 10 078 words

• 2 chapters that I consider finished

• about a dozen scenes and dialogues for chapters to come

• an actual outline that doesn't look too bad and it wasn't forced unlike the ones for my previous projects

I love my characters and I really enjoy writing this story. I'm still learning, but I don't let this discourage me. Even if I'm doing something wrong, I'll have plenty of time to fix everything when I get to editing.

I've noticed that every other time when I'm writing a scene a thought pops into my mind "wouldn't it be funny if he did this or said that?". Because of that I'm now pondering if I was right when identifying my genre as romance. There's still plenty of conflict and drama but whenever I see an opportunity to make it funny I just can't help it. And there's only been one kiss so far...

Okay, so maybe it's not romance after all. Is it women's fiction? Well, you know... because my protagonist is a woman... Is this how it works? I honestly have no idea. I've tried looking up some "determine your novel's genre" checklists but that didn't help much. Maybe I'll ask my alpha readers to help me figure that out.

Getting some initial feedback was another thing I've been dealing with this week. The mere thought of showing my manuscript to anyone other than my family makes me panic and question my plot and writing skills. I told my friend about a funny scene I'd just written and by the time I finished telling it I was thinking that it's stupid and not funny at all. But my friend laughed at my scene and offered some of his own speculations as to where the story is going. So at least there's one more person in this world that thinks that my jokes are funny.

My main goal in writing is to make my stories easy to read and funny. I'd like my readers to feel the same things I feel when I'm writing them. But to get to that goal I still have to write many thousands of words.