Writing About Writing: How To Be A Writer Without Being A Hermit

If you’re like me, sometimes you realize that you spend more time with a notebook and pencil or a computer than your own family and friends. And while it’s important to write, and to pursue your dreams and passions, you shouldn’t shut yourself off from the real world. (No quotation marks there, people. I’m being sort of serious.) So here are a few tips to help you not become a writing hermit.

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Tip #1: Include family and friends in the writing and editing process.

Ask your siblings what they think of your latest plot idea. Read some of your work out loud to your friends (and let them squeal with you over your awesome love interest or your wonderfully witty dialogue). Have your parents help you with editing and proofreading. Let people read your story! It’s no fun to do it alone, anyway. Why not let your friends and family help you out?

Tip #2: Find real-life wriing buddies.

Yes, you may have over a hundred followers on social media. But nothing beats a real life friend you can write with. Not only do you not have to worry about being in different time zones, you can also meet at a bookstore! Or a coffee shop! Or go on a writing retreat into the mountains!

Tip #3: Step away from your story.

This is NOT procrastination. Well, it could be. But I will promise you that it’s much, much more important to build a relationship with those closest to you than it is to sit in front of a computer writing (or doing something else like procrastination, if you’re stuck on your story). If you’re not writing anyway, why not go on a walk with your family? Or maybe make cookies and talk with your family while you eat them. Or *gasp* help your mom clean the house!

Those are just a few ways to help you work on writing while not sitting hunched behind a computer all day. Thoughts on this list? Authors, do you have any ways you work on writing while still being social in real life? Comment below with your thoughts!

Twinepathy (Part 24): Meeting Ms. Fabel

Hullo, everyone! How are all of you doing this fine Monday morning? Happy for a new part? I am… 😉 New? Check out part one.

The week passes in impatient agony for me. Mom’s at home the rest of the week, so we don’t have to take Maddie to IDIA. School feels even longer and more boring than usual for me, but it’s even worse for Brooklyn, since she’s still got a raging headache. Every time I see her wince or rube her aching head, it’s all I can do not to punch something… or someone. I leave a stormy look on my face so people will leave me alone.

On Saturday morning, I wake up around six, knowing that Denver will take ages to get up and get ready to go, but impatient nonetheless. I quietly go to the bathroom and shower. First dibs is always nice. It only takes me a couple of minutes to get ready, but when I get out, everyone’s still in bed. It is Saturday, after all.

So I have a choice. Do I wait patiently, or do I wake Denver up?

I’ve never been patient, that’s for sure.

“Albany, go away!” Denver mumbles, flipping over and burying his face in his pillow.

I stand over him with my hands on my hips. “Do I need to get some ice water?” I threaten in a fake sweet voice.

He sits up slowly, a grumpy look on his face. “I’m older than you and Brooklyn, but you’re always bossing me around,” he grumbles. He does a zombie walk to the bathroom. I take pity on him and go down to the kitchen to pull together an easy, unruinable breakfast – also known as cereal.

Denver comes downstairs fifteen minutes later, hair wet and tousled from his shower. He goes over to the coffee machine to make his coffee, which I didn’t dare to attempt. He sits down at the table, looks at me, and then pours himself a bowl of granola. “We could’ve waited until this afternoon, so I could sleep in. It’s not like we’re on a deadline,” he grumbles.

Oh, if only you knew. “I just can’t wait,” I insist. “If this works out… if it’s really her family, then she’ll be so happy.”

Denver nods reluctantly in agreement. “Well, I hope you’re right. I’d hate to waste a trip up there for nothing.”

If he knew what was really going on, we wouldn’t be going at all. But I simply nod and hurry to get the dishes cleaned up and put away as he pours his coffee into a mug for the drive. Before I know it, we’re on the road in Denver’s old fixer-upper car and headed towards White Bluff. I put one of Denver’s favorite CDs into the CD player to get him into a good mood. I’d prefer silence and random jokes about the passing billboards and scenery, but I know how he likes music. I just hope he doesn’t start singing.

A little over forty-five minutes later, we pull up in front of the address. The house looks good, well-cared for, with some really nice flowerbeds out front. I’d guess they’re the work of someone who loves flowers but wants to keep it easy to care for. Denver nods. “Looks like a nice place.” He turns off the car and reaches for the door handle.

I pause. “You’re coming?”

He gives me a look like I said that I made filet mignon and chicken cordon bleu without burning it. “Of course I am. They’re strangers, after all.”

That I hadn’t planned on. I manage a grin. “That’s true.” Internally, I’m screaming, What am I going to do???

We get out and head to the front door. My brain zooms through options. Is it possible I could get Denver to leave me alone with Genesis Fabel? That doesn’t seem likely. And what are we going to do if IDIA has already got to her – which, in all likelihood, they have – and she’s not even here? All the worrying is going to make me sick. Denver rings the doorbell, and we wait.

Denver’s about to ring the doorbell again when the door swings open. A lady with long, raven-black hair stands in the doorway, an adorable chubby toddler on her hip. She looks us over with a glint of suspicion in her eye. “Hello,” she says, her voice a bit chilly. “What can I do for you?”

I step forward before Denver can say anything. “Are you Genesis Fabel?” I ask.

Her eyes narrow slightly. “Why do you ask?”

Why is she so jumpy, if she’s not the right person? Jen must have come and talked to her. “I’m Albany, and this is my older brother, Denver,” I explain. I do my best to look friendly and cheerful. Think like Brooklyn. “We wanted to talk to you about a friend of ours.”

She reaches for the door handle. “I’m sorry, I can’t talk right now. I’ve got a lot going on.” She begins to shut the door.

What to do? She can’t do this! I panic, and I shove my foot between the door and the door frame. “No,” I tell her firmly, narrowing my eyes. “We need to talk to you, now. And you can’t get rid of us.”

The Prisoner And His Mother – An Avengers AU Fanfic

Ha! You thought this would be Jen’s interview, didn’t you? Or an extra part? Unfortunately, no. But, fortunately, it’s an Avengers alternate universe fanfic! I don’t want to spoil it… so enjoy! 😀

Five people occupied the Quinjet, flying through the dark night. Natasha Romanoff sat in the front, piloting them to the Helicarrier, her nameless copilot at her side. Tony Stark, in his Iron Man suit, and Steve Rogers, brandishing his shield, monitored the prisoner in the back.

And then there was the prisoner himself. Bound and captured, he looked uncomfortable, but there was still a spark of humor that gave off the impression that he was inwardly laughing at their stupidity. He may have been beaten and caught, but he was still Loki. Nothing would really change that.

Then Loki got an odd look on his face and looked around in surprise. Steve Rogers looked at him as lightning blasted overhead. “What’s wrong? Scared of a little lightning?”

It didn’t happen suddenly, but it happened in a matter of seconds. One moment, the space in between the front of the Quinjet and the back was empty, and, in the next moment, she occupied the space. She faded in gently, silently, brining the soft breeze of her aura with her. Continue reading

Interviews From The Writer’s Desk: Adira Billings

This is one of my favorite characters from a roleplay I’m doing with a friend, and she’s also Slade Ellery‘s cousin, along with having a pretty big part in his book. Please let me know what you think! 😀

I check my watch for the bazillionth time. Still five minutes. I’m both excited and nervous about this interview.

Benedict stick his head into my office. “She’s here.”

I nod. “Send her in.”

Half a minute later, a very tall, slender girl enters the room. Her light blond hair is in a French braid and pulled over her shoulder, and her green eyes glisten with excitement. She’s wearing a plain black t-shirt with a brown leather jacket, black pants, black leather fingerless gloves, and – yes – tall black boots. A gorgeous quiver is thrown over her shoulder, and she clutches her bow tightly, the only sign of her nervousness. I nod toward the chair and she sits.

I pull my laptop towards me. “Are you ready?” I ask. She nods. “Okay. What is your full name, and how old are you?”

“I’m Adira Billings, and I’m twenty-nine,” she replies.

“Where are you from?”

“I’m originally from Lerali,” Adira says. “But I recently moved here to Earth – more specifically, New York.”

I nod, typing. “Why did you decide to move?” I ask.

Her face reddens. “Um, well, I wasn’t exactly comfortable on Lerali anymore.” I raise an eyebrow, and she sighs. “Okay, fine. I was wanted on Lerali for quite a number of crimes, and I decided it would be best to lay low for a while. Hence, Earth.”

I nod again, not wanting to push her too much. “So since you’re a Leralian, I assume you have a Gift. What is it?”

“I’m actually one of the rare people with half of two Gifts. I’m half a Suspender, like Slade, and I’m half a Messenger, like Ellis. So I can send telepathic messages and read minds, along with doing some telekinesis, limited, though, not like Slade.”

I type. “That’s interesting. How would you describe your personality?”

Adira makes a face. “I’ve always been a bit of a rebel, seeking out adventure and excitement. Other than that, I’m sarcastic, and I tend to have a bit of a temper and go into things headlong without thinking.”

I smile. “Sounds a bit like Slade.” I hurry on when her face turns sad. “What about your family?”

Her face gets sadder. “Slade, his mom, and his sister are my only family. Both my parents and my older sister, Arza, are dead.”

Oh, goodness. How much more awkward can this get? “I-I’m so sorry. I just keep asking the wrong questions.” I pause. “What about your bow and quiver? Do you like archery?”

Adira laughs. “That might be a rhetorical question. Yes, I do. I’m pretty good at most fighting and martial arts techniques, and weapons are my forte.” She frowns. “But of course, after Slade’s dad died, I turned and used that for the wrong reason, the wrong people.”

The silence hangs awkwardly for a second and I clear my throat. “Well, I think that’s all for now. Thank you for coming.”

She nods. “I’m sorry if I made this more awkward than it had to be.”

I shrug, pushing away my computer and standing up as she leaves. “I don’t mind. Have a nice day.”

She gives a slight bow, a smile, and leaves the room. I slump back in my chair and laugh at myself.

Interviews From the Writer’s Desk: Slade Ellery

I’m so excited for you guys to finally meet Slade! He is currently my favorite character in the Teen Warriors series, the fourth of the five main characters. See Haven, Ellis, and Iris by clicking on the links. Enjoy! Feedback is appreciated!

“Help!” I hear Benedict squeak. The door of my office slams open, sending me flying across the room to catch a falling vase. Benedict floats into the room, five feet off the ground, lying face-down. I gape at him. “Help,” he yelps again.

Benedict suddenly falls to the floor.A cute teenage boy with a cocky grin waks in through the open door. His very dark brown hair almost looks black, and his eyes are a chocolatey brown. He’s medium height, and fairly skinny. “He wanted to show me in,” he tells me “I wanted to show myself in.” He says it as if it explains everything.

Benedict picks himself up and hurries out of the room, sending an indignant glare over his shoulder at the dark-haired teenager. The door wings shut by itself, but it was probably helped a little by the boy. He sits down in the interview chair and smiles at me. I finally recover enough to speak.

“You must be Slade,” I say, stating the obvious as I sit down behind my desk.

Slade grins. “That would be me.”

I settle down and pull my laptop in front of me. “I assume, by the way you treated my secretary, that you’re ready for the interview,” I raise an eyebrow at him.

He runs his fingers through his dark hair, that perpetual grin still on his face. “Of course. Adira’s always accused me of being way too eager to talk about myself. I think she’s right. Oh, and I’m sorry about the thing with Benny,” he adds. “I enjoy dramatic entrances.”

Benedict, not Benny,” I growl under my breath. My voice switches into cheerful mode. Forced cheerful mode, that is. “All right, let’s get this party started.” And over with as quickly as possible. “What is your full name, and how old are you?”

He leansback in his chair and puts his hands behind his head. “My name is Slade Ellery, at your service, m’lady, and I’m eighteen.”

I nod, typing in his reply – minus the embellishments, of course – and move on to the next question. “Can you tell me about your family?” I ask.

He laughs. “Can I? I definitely can. The question is, can you sit through my ramblings on that subject.” He winks. “Well, how do I start? First there’s my mom. She’s so sweet and strong and patient. She’s been so amazing, especially after my dad left when I was nine. My only sibling is my little sister, Mendi. She’s thirteen, five years younger than me. We’re really close. All three of us are. Mendi’s super energetic, polite, and cheerful, and she’s almost always smiling. And Adira, my cousin, is almost like an older sister to me. She’s twenty-nine. She spent most of her teenage years living with us, and a little after that, but… well, it’s a long story,” he finishes.

I nod. My fingers are already getting tired. “Any other important back story info I need to know?”

He makes a face. “Well, I spent five years looking for my dad, and found him when I was fourteen, but, well, I was three days too late,” he finishes, sighing.

My hand flies to my mouth. “Oh, I’m so sorry. I didn’t know…”

He waves me off. “It’s okay. I’ve mostly gotten over it.”

Mostly. Not completely. I move hurriedly to the next question. “What is your Gift?” Much less painful, but I already learned the answer, didn’t I?

Slade grins, the sorrow evaporating from his eyes. “I already kind of demonstrated. Telekinesis, basically. Sometimes, I use my hands, but I don’t really have to. I can just send a mental command, in a way. Basically just thinking about it.”

I raise an eyebrow. “That’s really neat,” I tell him. “Now, how would you honestly describe your personality?”

He snorts. “Honestly? Ha. That makes it a lot harder. Mot people would probably describe my personality as annoying. Which I don’t mind very much. Annoying is better than wimpy, and it’s a good mask, too. Sarcastic, protective, funny, a show-off, practical joker, comedian, things like that are what I normally get.”

“What are some of your bad characteristics?” I ask.

Slade raises an eyebrow. “Me? Bad characteristics? I’m kidding,” he adds, seeing my annoyed look. “Okay, so maybe my sarcasm is a bad characteristic, and Adira accuses me of not thinking things through before i act. I tend to just jump into things. I’m not exactly the most friendly guy, and some people think I’m rude. And I guess my overprotectiveness.” He grins. “And my lack of humility.”

I hold back and unladylike snort and manage to keep a congenial smile on my face. “All right. What are your strengths?”

Slade smiles, a real smile this time. “I throw myself wholeheartedly into anything I set my mind to. I’m passionate and I’m pretty good at getting out of, um, situations. I’ve put a lot of work into my Gift, too.”

“Last thing,” I tell him. “What is your Name, the one the King gave you?”

“The Suspender,” Slade tells me, grinning.

I finally grin back. “Thanks so much for coming. And do me a favor: don’t mess with Benedict on the way out.”

He frowns, fakely; his eyes are laughing. “All right, I’ll try not to.” And we both laugh.