May 14, 2014

What's Up Wednesday

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop created by me and my sister, Erin Funk, to help connect writers on this writing journey. With that aim in mind, if you'd like to join us, we encourage you to visit other WUW blogs each week, get to know some of the other writers taking part, and spread some writerly love! Don't forget to leave the link to your post in the widget at the end of this post. ***And please remember to link back to our host blogs and/or use one of the WUW buttons provided. We really appreciate it!***

For those of you who are new to WUW, here are the headings we are using:

WHAT I'M READING
WHAT I'M WRITING

WHAT INSPIRES ME RIGHT NOW
WHAT ELSE I'VE BEEN UP TO

Welcome, and thank you for joining us! 



WHAT I'M READING
Since my last What's Up Wednesday post, I've finished (or started reading) the following books:

•  THE GEOGRAPHY OF YOU AND ME by Jennifer E. Smith
    Cute at times (when the MC and LI were actually in the same zip code), but overall not nearly as good as her other two books. 
•  SMART GIRLS GET WHAT THEY WANT by Sarah Strohmeyer
    I enjoyed this one, even if it was a bit predictable. I really liked the love interest and Gigi's female friendships.
•  TIGER LILY by Jodi Lynn Anderson
    This came highly recommended and it did not disappoint. The writing was gorgeous, the story vivid and thought-provoking.
    Cute but I wanted more out of the premise and the romance. Also, the MC felt a bit MG at times to me. Overall, I did like it. 
(Just popping back in to amend this: I had NO idea that this book was part of a duology. That definitely changes things for me. I feel like we'll get more of that romance I wanted and some things will get sorted out that left me unsettled at the end. Phew!)
•  THE CLOCKWORK SCARAB by Colleen Gleason
    I'm not far into this one, but already liking it. Sherlock's niece + Bram Stoker's sister + time travel + crime-solving = AWESOME

WHAT I'M WRITING
I think I've got WiP-related ADD: The tendency to get distracted when I pick a WiP to work on. I'm back working on my YA sci-fi revisions, though I fully expect that might flip flop and I'll be drafting my YA contemporary again. Writing is writing. C'est la vie.

WHAT INSPIRES ME RIGHT NOW
Magical storytelling, pretty prose that doesn't cross the "purple" line, great voice, unique story premises, eye-catching covers...

WHAT ELSE I'VE BEEN UP TO
The hubs and I drove to Northern Ontario this past week to visit his mom. The eighteen-hour drive was not nearly as bad as I was expecting. I managed to get some reading and knitting in, so that's good. I haven't been back to Northern Ontario since I moved away when I was 20, so being back in that neck of the woods was very nostalgic. I didn't realize just how much I missed it.

Clockwise from top: The Canadian Prairies, me and the hubs, crossing into Ontario, my MIL's lake
front property (spring hadn't yet arrived), and Lake of the Woods Brewing Company in Kenora, ON.

Like I mentioned, I had a bunch of time on my hands during the drive, so I worked on a baby sweater for a book club friend.:

I just need to sew up the side seams and sew on the buttons. ♥
Other than that, I've been working on my French course (which is mostly easy), finishing my Veronica Mars re-watch (I got to the end of disc 5 thinking I had another to go, but disc 6 was just extra features--Boo!), and not a whole lot else worth noting.


So, that's it for me, folks.
WHAT'S NEW WITH YOU?


48 comments:

  1. Whoa, you got a lot of reading done this week! I'm feeling overwhelmed by the number of books piling up around here, so I might have to dedicate a few days solely to reading sometime soon. So you're back to working on WoN again? We really need to have a Skype session in the near future. May has just been crazy busy so far and anything writing related has been relegated to the middle of the night for me. Not the greatest time to chat online!

    I'm so jealous that you got to go back to Ontario. I'd love to head that way with the boys someday. Wish it was a wee bit closer (darn Manitoba). I'm glad you guys had a fun trip, although I'm not entirely sure I want to know what Todd is laughing at in that one picture.

    Love the baby sweater! It's adorable! Your book club friend is a lucky mom! :)

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    1. Well, when you're stuck in a car for hours on end, there isn't a whole lot else to do but read. I'm just glad I actually can read in the car! I've been reading a lot of books off my TBR shelf, so that's good. Oddly, there aren't nearly as many books this year that I'm anticipating as in other years. When I say I'm back to WoN again, I meant I worked on it once lol. Still, I'm in a WoN frame of mind right now, so I'll most likely continue to work on it. It's not without it's issues, but I feel a bit more ready to tackle some of them now. We can do a Skype session without writing, too. We haven't talked in a while, so it might be nice to just get caught up. With some tea. :)

      Wabigoon is about 12 hours from the Soo, but not all that north from it, so it felt a lot like what we're familiar with. Honestly, it made me miss a lot about living in Ontario. So many trees and lakes! Kenora was an especially neat little place with quaint shops and that awesome brewery. The drive wasn't all that bad, though. Even going through Manitoblah. (We should petition the government to change its name.) As for Todd, he was laughing because every time I tried to take a picture he was making silly faces. Silly Todd.

      We'll have to hang out on Skype whenever you're free. Todd is in Texas for anywhere up to a month, so I'm mostly available whenever. :)

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  2. How cute is that sweater? Aaaaaaaw!

    I am resisting the urge to flip between WiPs so hard right now. I just want to get this first draft done and then I can have lots of fun with the extremely tempting SNI.

    Glad you had such a nice trip ^_^

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    1. Thanks, Cole! I forgot how much I love knitting baby stuff. It whips up so quickly! Plus, it's just too cute.

      I'd say "don't cave" in regards to the SNI siren song, but that would make me a hypocrite. ;-) I'm just going with what I'm in the mood for, which is the only thing working for me right now. Have a great week, Cole!

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  3. That sweater is adorable! :)

    And man, I LOOOOVED Smart Girls Get What They Want, Tiger Lily and really enjoyed TO ALL THE BOYS… I feel like SMART GIRLS is so underrated which is a shame - I loved that the focus of the book was strong girls/smart girls going after their goals as opposed to the super romance-y type books. On the other hand I <3'd the romance in Tiger Lily :)

    Good luck flipping between WiPs!!!! :)

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    1. Thanks, Rachel! It was so much fun to knit, which is why I love knitting baby stuff so much. :)

      I think the only book out of the bunch I listed that I loved was TIGER LILY. I liked the other ones just fine, but I didn't fall in love with them exactly. There were things in them that I wished were better or different. I'm looking forward to reading the second book in the TO ALL THE BOYS... duology. I think it will deliver a bit more of what I wanted from the first book. I hope so, anyway!

      Have a great week, Rachel!

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  4. That sweater is too cute!! Love the buttons with it. I'm always jealous of people who can read in cars. I just can't. Sounds like you had a fun trip. I like that, WIP ADD. I've had that before. It can be interesting. Good luck on revisions.

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    1. Thanks, Mandie! I'm a bit worried that it's too feminine considering we don't know the sex of the baby. We'll see, I guess. I feel bad for people who can't read in cars. On an 18-hour drive, I don't know what I'd do if I could read or knit. It was a pretty fun trip all around, so that's good. Now to get back into some kind of writing groove... Have a great week! :)

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  5. That sweater is adorable! You have a real talent! I took a knitting class once and knit about a million washcloths and that was it. :) Your trip pictures look wonderful. Glad to hear you had such a great time. Have a great week, Jaime!

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    1. Thanks, Kitty! It was so much fun to knit. I love knitting baby stuff because it whips up so fast and the patterns are cute. :) The trip was a lot of fun and it was nice to get back to a familiar part of the country. Have a great week!

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  6. The sweater is gorgeous!
    I just brought Tiger Lily home from the library and I think I will have to get The Clockwork Scarab. It sounds wonderful.

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    1. Thanks, Sarah! I forgot just how much I love knitting baby stuff. :)
      TIGER LILY was so beautifully written and an interesting take on PETER PAN. I'd call it historical fiction with a fantasy twist. And THE CLOCKWORK SCARAB is really enjoyable so far. Have a great week! :)

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  7. That sweater is awesome!

    The Clockwork Scarab sounds fun, I may have to add it to my TBR-list. A few of your reads are already on there.

    And, YES, writing is writing :)

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    1. Thanks, Jennifer! I love knitting baby stuff because it's just so darn cute and whips up super fast. :)
      I'm really enjoying THE CLOCKWORK SCARAB so far. Cool premise, too! Now I just need to carve out some time today to dig into it and to maybe get some writing done. Have a great week!

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  8. That's a lot of reading - Tiger Lily sounds like a really interesting read, I may have to pick that one up in future. :)

    You're right: writing is writing is writing! I used to be terrible at jumping from idea to idea before I started working on my current WIP (this is the longest I've ever spent on just one project) but in all honesty I just enjoyed writing a little bit of everything when I was in the mood for it.

    That sweater is adorable. :D Have a lovely week!

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    1. I don't normally get that much reading done, but when you're stuck in a car for 36 hours... Plus, they were all pretty easy reads, too. I'd call TIGER LILY historical fiction with a fantasy twist. I really enjoyed it!

      I've always kind of jumped between projects, but for some reason it's really bad this time around. I'm hoping I can stick with this sci-fi one and see it through to the end of revisions once and for all. Time will tell, I guess.

      Have a great week, Jess!

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  9. That's such a cute sweater!

    I can completely relate to the WIP ADD...it's so hard to stay focused on this draft when I have at least two others calling for my attention. But yes, writing is writing!

    Have a great week!

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    1. Thanks, Emma! It was so much fun to knit, as all baby stuff pretty much is. :)

      If I didn't allow myself to go where the writing inspiration leads, I would probably not write at all, which would be a real bummer. Writing what I'm in the mood to write is working for me right now, so that's good. Hope you have a great week!

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  10. SMART GIRLS keeps popping up on my radar, so I think I'm going to have to check it out soon. (Even though I probably need to cut back on the book buying…I can't help it! There are just so many books to read!) I'm into the premise of TO ALL THE BOYS but I was really disappointed by THE SUMMER I TURNED PRETTY and it's put me off trying this new one. I did enjoy BURN FOR BURN, though…

    I agree with everybody else: writing is writing--so long as it's getting done, that's all that matters!

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    1. SMART GIRLS is a good friend book as well as romance. I like when there's that strong element of female friendship. TO ALL THE BOYS... was good, but I wouldn't say it was my favourite. There was something about the main love interest that left me disgruntled, but I'm hoping Jenny Han addresses it in the sequel. I also wish the letter aspect of the story had been a bit more prominent (like the way the synopsis makes it sound). Overall, it was good. You should give it a shot! Have a great week, Rebecca! :)

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  11. I know I've already complimented that baby sweater, but oh my gosh -- so cute! Makes me smile every time I see it. :-) I'm so happy you enjoyed TIGER LILY. I've got another Peter Pan retelling waiting for me on my husband's Kindle (SECOND STAR), but I'm hesitant to start it because I have doubts about any other retelling living up to the loveliness that is TIGER LILY. We shall see! Best of luck battling your WiP ADD. I think words on the page are what's most important. Who cares if you have to jump projects to get them? :-)

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    1. Thanks, Katy! I love knitting baby stuff so much because it whips up so quickly and the patterns are so cute. I might just have to knit up a bunch and sell them or something just so I have an excuse to make them lol. Or, you know, have kids of my own, right? (Easier said than done.) You'll have to let me know how SECOND STAR is when you get to it. Maybe I should actually read PETER PAN sometime, hey? Have a great week, Katy!

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  12. One thing I wish I could do is read for long periods of time while traveling. But no-can-do. It would be such a great way to kill time and get through the TBR. :) That baby sweater is adorable, Jaime!

    Keep pressing on with revisions. I don't think I could work on two projects at once, but if it's working for you, roll with it.

    I wish you all the best! :)

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    1. I feel so bad for people who can't read in cars. I'd go crazy sitting there for 36 hours without being able to read or whatever. Especially since I don't yet have my license and can't even contribute to the driving part of things. This was the first time I attempted knitting in the car, though. Success! :)

      I'm definitely rolling with the two projects on the go thing. I don't think I'd be writing at all right now if I wasn't going where the inspiration leads. I'd much prefer to stick with one project and see it through to the end, but frustration with it ends up keeping me from getting anything done. Still, I'm hoping to finish this sci-fi once and for all! Have a great week, Colin! :)

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  13. I have The Geography of You and Me and To All The Boys I've Loved Before high on the TBR pile right now. I can't even wait to get to them!

    That sweater is so adorable! I am sending my sister (the avid knitter in the family) to look at it. We have three baby nieces now, so she's always working on little girl projects. :)

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    1. I hope you enjoy THE GEOGRAPHY OF YOU AND ME. I liked her other two books more, but that could be due to any number of reasons (timing? mood? who knows?). And definitely go into reading TO ALL THE BOYS... knowing that it's part of a duology. I wish I'd known that.

      I wish I had three baby nieces to knit for lol. At this point, I think I'm just going to knit up baby stuff anyway, because it's fun and so much easier than knitting adult stuff. (Though, I'm almost done a sweater for myself, too.) Have a great week, Rachel! :)

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  14. I am still in awe of that awesome baby sweater. ALMOST makes me want to have another one so I can pay you to make one for me. :) You are on a reading roll! Some awesome sounding books in your recently read pile.

    I've got WIP ADD too! You aren't alone!

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    1. Thanks, Jennie! I love knitting baby stuff because it whips up so quickly. The patterns are so adorable, too. Now I just need babies of my own so I can knit them some stuff. :) All of the reading is thanks to that super long roadtrip we took recently. Normally, I don't get that much reading in. Wouldn't that be nice, though?

      I'm trying to see the WiP ADD thing as a good thing, but in reality I just want to see one project through to the end. Still, it's better to be working on something than nothing, right? Have a wonderful week, Jennie!

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  15. I'm so glad you liked Tiger Lily. I was so surprised by how nuanced that book was and ended up loving it. You've been reading a lot! Clockwork Scarab sounds really cool. I'll have to check it out. :)

    You already know this but I love that sweater you knitted. Those are some skills, lady! Great color choice too. You should make an adult version for yourself!

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    1. Honestly, TIGER LILY was not at all what I was expecting, but I ended up loving it. I don't normally get this much reading in. It was only because of our super long roadtrip this past week. Nothing like 36 hours in the car to get some serious reading done!

      Thanks! (About the sweater.) Like I've said to others here, I like knitting baby stuff because it's so cute and whips up really quick. I think I might make more baby stuff for...I have no idea who. :) I love this colour, too. I have so many things in that particular colour and I can't get enough of it. I really should make myself an adult version! Have a great week, Alice! :)

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  16. You have tons of great stuff to read right now! And l love that adorable sweater. You're the knitting queen.

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    1. Well, those are the books I read this past week (long roadtrip), but I definitely have tons more to get to still! Though, I won't be trapped in a car for 36 hours so it will take a bit longer. ;-)

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  17. Writing is writing and it all counts! You're doing a lot of it, and how exciting that you have so many projects in the works to choose from. Celebrate that and just keep going! I'm impressed by all your reading -- nothing like a long road trip, as you say, for that. I'm going to check out a few of those. They sound good!

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    1. Thanks, Laurel. :-) I'm trying to embrace this mentality. I've done more writing in the past little while than in the several months before that, so it's definitely a good thing!

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  18. Sounds like a fun road trip! I also lived in Ontario when I was younger- Ottawa and Burlington twice. I was back in Ottawa last year for my sister's wedding but it was such a short trip, I wish I could've had a bit more time.
    I'm excited to read To All The Boys... I didn't know there's going to be a second book either, so good to know! The Clockwork Scarab sounds great. Must add that to my TBR.

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    1. Ottawa is such a beautiful city. I've only been once, but would love to visit again. Our road trip was definitely fun, which is good because that's a pretty long drive. Yeah, I wish I'd known there was a second book. I liked Book 1, but I wanted more from it. Maybe Book 2 will deliver that? We'll see, I guess. :-)

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  19. Holy mother of cuteness, that sweater is ADORABLE. And so is the donkey!

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    1. Thank, Lori! It was totally fun to make too. :-)

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  20. That sweater is adorable. You need an Etsy shop! :)

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    1. Thanks, Crystal! You know, I've sort of been thinking about that very thing, but I'm kind of chicken to get in over my head. :-)

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  21. Hah! WiP ADD...I think I have this affliction too. I'm not a big fan a revisions, so I keep bouncing around and doing other stuff instead. :)

    Your trip sounds absolutely fantastic! And I can't tell you how impressed I am that you can follow a knitting pattern while driving. I can only manage scarves, because counting stitches while listening to books on tape and wrangling the car kitty while *not* stabbing myself in the stomach with knitting needles is beyond my skill level. The sweater is absolutely gorgeous by the way! Gorgeous. Love the buttons.

    And holy moly you're a reading machine! Go you. You're almost halfway towards your yearly goal and it's not even June.

    Hope you have an amazing week! :)

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    1. I don't so much mind revisions as I mind revisions on a story that has been revised a million times already. *Sigh* It feels neverending at this point, because the story has morphed so many times into something different. (And hopefully something better. We'll see, I guess.)

      The trip was really great. I wasn't initially thrilled at the notion of being in the car for 36 hours and across the two most boring provinces in Canada (Saskatchewan and Manitoba), but it ended up being a lot more fun than I anticipated. Knitting the sweater made it even more fun. Baby stuff is just so much fun to knit. :-)

      I was falling behind on my reading challenge goal after DREAMS OF GODS & MONSTERS, but I managed to gain some ground with this road trip. A lot of the books were on the slimmer side, too, so that helped. It was nice to read some standalones for a change. Have a wonderful week, Kris!

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  22. I was amazed you'd been reading so many books until I saw - road trip!

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    1. Yeah, that's an abnormally large number of books to read in such a short span of time. At least for me, anyway. Thanks to being cooped up in a car for 36 hours, I managed to get caught up on my reading challenge goal! :-)

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  23. I love reading your thoughts on the books you're reading. And yay for your YA sic-fi. Keep pushing! Love what inspires you too… ditto to all of it. And you always have the most GORGEOUS pictures. Your road trip looked amazing! I bet you're so much fun to travel with!

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  24. So many of those books you mentioned are on my TBR list!! Yay for road trips and time for reading! :D

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  25. I wish I could read in the car without getting sick! I've got a similar drive coming up this summer through Washington, Oregon, and California, which is a pretty boring drive for the most part because it goes through all of the places where no one lives and in July, there is nary a green thing to be seen once you hit southern Oregon. I'm so jealous of all that you got done!

    That baby sweater is adorable :)

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  26. Hi! I'm kinda interested in the whole What's up wednesday thing, but even after reading two post about it, i still don't really get how i do it, about the link and the widget! (i blame the fact that english is my second language)

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