December 10, 2014

What's Up Wednesday

What's Up Wednesday is a blog hop created by me and my sister, Erin Funk, to help writers connect. With that aim in mind, we want to encourage all participants to swing by other WUW blogs, get to know some of the writers taking part, and spread some writerly encouragement around. Before you go, be sure to leave the link to your post in the widget at the end of this post. Please remember to link back to the host blogs and/or use a WUW button. We really appreciate it! For those of you who are new to WUW, these are the headings we've been using:

WHAT I'M READING
WHAT I'M WRITING (+ ONE WRITING GOAL) *

WHAT WORKS FOR ME
WHAT ELSE IS NEW


**Note: WUW will be taking a break on both Christmas Eve + New Year's Eve so there won't be a linky widget on either of the host sites on those days.**
WHAT I'M READING
This hasn't been a great week for reading as I've been otherwise occupied hanging out with my mom who is visiting from out of town. In my last post I mentioned starting MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME, but I found it wasn't grabbing me like I had hoped it would. There's still time to get into it before Christmas, but in the meantime I've moved on to WINTERSPELL by Claire Legrand....which isn't holding my attention either. Ughhhhh. I think I'm in a reading slump, folks. Though, I should mention that I'm only about 60 pages into this book, so I don't know. Maybe I'll get into it. There are things that I find a bit weird and/or disturbing so far in this book, so that's holding me back a bit, not gonna lie. Here's to a better reading week...

WHAT I'M WRITING
Well, nothing this week, but that wasn't unexpected with my mom being here. I wasn't about to sequester myself in my office, working on my WIP while she was here. But that doesn't mean I can't set some writing goals for the upcoming week.
My writing goal for the week → Write 500+ words five days this week. (Or a total of 2500-3000 words.)

WHAT WORKS FOR ME
Writing out of order (Part II)
So I mentioned in last week's post that I like to write my WiPs out of order, but I feel like I need to clarify that a bit. There is some concern that writing in this manner could lead to the problem of boring scenes stacked up until the end in favour of working on the fun scenes. This wasn't exactly what I meant. First of all, I think you need a reasonably detailed outline to be able to do this effectively, and secondly, there shouldn't be boring scenes in your WiP in the first place, wouldn't you agree? You run into this just as often with writing chronologically, so that issue isn't exclusive to nonsequential writing.

Working on the scenes that I'm feeling on any given day doesn't mean all smoochy make out scenes or whatever. (Though, sometimes that definitely means smoochy make out scenes. Depends on the day.) If I'm feeling irritated, I might be drawn to those scenes that feature an argument or a physical fight. Call it a literary punching bag, if you wish. If I'm feeling down, maybe something with a melancholy vibe might be in order? To me, that only makes what I'm writing that much more authentic, you know? Maybe sitting down to write a big ole kissing scene will make me feel less angry or glum? Bonus!

WHAT ELSE IS NEW
My week in photos...
Top row: 1) Candy cane ice cream + Christmas movies; 2) Miracle Bars; 3) doing some yummy baking;
4) Pull-apart maple pecan sticky buns; and 5) super fun (and cheap) candy cane stripe scarf from Old Navy
Bottom row (#BlackAndWhiteChallenge): 1) Girl kitty, Pete; 2) skating with grade 6 kids; 3) #TBT to the time
we spent in Paris this past August; 4) Molasses cookies with chai sugar; and 5) snowflake and lights on the tree.
It's been a fun week hanging with my mom, but I'm sort of ready to get back to my "regularly scheduled programming" lol. 

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


43 comments:

  1. Love the photos. I feel a sudden urge for festive food :)

    I'm in a bit of a reading slump, too. There's just so much else to do right now, I don't have the time to really engage with a book. Hopefully that'll change by next week.

    Writing out of order can be so liberating, especially if you're struggling with a scene earlier in the book.

    Glad you've had a lovely time with your mum. Have a great week!

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    1. Thanks, Cole! I got to split the baked goods with my mom, so that's good. Otherwise, I think we might have a problem lol. I picked up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell last night before bed (after I scheduled this post), and it's good so far, so I'm hoping the reading slump was simply related to what I had been reading. Hope you're able to get into something as well! Have a wonderful week, Cole! :D

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  2. I totally hear you about the reading slump - I've been trudging through the same two books for a couple of weeks now. Hopefully whatever's next is more engaging!

    Hope you have a wonderful (and more settled) week!

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    1. After scheduling this post, I picked up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell, and so far I'm really enjoying it. Not a big surprise considering I loved both of the other books I read by this author. Nice to know the slump was related to specific books and not just in general. Have a great week, Sarah! :D

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  3. Darn. Reading slumps aren't any fun. Luckily they don't last forever. Enjoy your time with your mom!

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    1. I think the slump is over. I picked up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell last night and it's good so far. Thank goodness! I might just meet my Goodreads Reading Challenge after all! Have a great week, Melanie! :D

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  4. Good luck with your writing goal! You can do 500 words a day. Sorry to hear about the reading slump. They suck. My advice is to re-read a favorite / comfort book. That always helps me. Glad you had a great time with your mom even if the writing went a little to the side. :-) And looks like you did a TON of baking!

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    1. Thanks, Rachel! I think 500 words a day is totally doable. I used to do twice that every single day, so I have no excuse now. I think I've busted out of the reading slump by picking up a book by a fave author → ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell. So far I'm really enjoying it, which comes as no surprise. Have a great week, Rachel! :D

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  5. It's definitely been slow going for me with reading, too...too busy! Lovely photos, :) puts you in the festive mood for sure

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    1. I always end up reading before bed, and usually it's something I really look forward to, but lately everything has been making me fall asleep. :-/ Thankfully, I picked up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell last night and it's making me want to read more. Yay! Have a great week, Mere! :D

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  6. Sorry about your reading slump. I absolutely adored MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME. Skip ahead to the Stephanie Perkins story. :) And good luck with your writing goal this week! I write out of order, too, but I never have a detailed outline. Have a great week!

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    1. You know, I was thinking I might just have to power through the odd short story that I don't love in this anthology just to get to the ones I'm sure I'll really enjoy. (Like Perkins's story.) I also picked up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowel last night before bed and so far I love it. Yay! Book slump over. Have a great week, Sara! :D

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  7. You can definitely do 500 words a day!

    It's really frustrating to be caught in a reading slump. It's particularly frustrating if the books came highly recommended, and you find yourself not agreeing with the crowd, or if the books just don't do anything for you.

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    1. I used to do twice that every day, so I have no excuse not to do 500 words a day now. (That's what I'm telling myself, anyway.) I think my reading slump is finally over all thanks to a book I picked up before bed last night. Phew! Glad the slump is over. Have a wonderful week, Carrie-Anne! :D

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  8. I'm also reading MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME. It's a good one. The scene that's sticking with me most so far is the super cluttered house.

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    1. I'm having a hard time getting into it, but I figure if I power through, I'm sure to find some stories in the anthology that I like. I'm also reading ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell and loving it. Have a great week, Kelly! :D

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  9. Love all of your recent photos, and I love what you said about writing out of order. I've been doing that more and more with the story I'm drafting, and I'm really seeing the value in writing scenes that speak to my current mood. I agree with what you said about needing an outline to make it work, too. Maybe some people can fly by the seat of their pants without any sort of plan, but *I* am definitely not that sort of writer. Have an awesome week, Jaime, and best of luck with your 500 words a day!

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    1. Thanks, Katy! I sometimes worry that I'm bombarding Instagram friends with the Christmas-y minutiae of my life lol. As for writing out of order, I've tried writing chronologically in the past and it just didn't work for me. Same with pantsing. Eek! I need some kind of outline or my stories just end up meandering too much and I completely lose interest. I'm always happy to hear that there are others who feel this way too. Have a wonderful week, Katy! :D

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  10. Love the photos!
    I'm usually the one to go visit my parents (which I'll do right after Christmas) but I always feel ready to get back home and back to "regularly scheduled programming" just like you said. It's nice to do something different, but I always end up missing my routine. ;)
    I hear you with the reading slump. I just want to read a REALLY GOOD book! Is that too much to ask?

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    1. Thanks, Melanie! I love all things Christmas. Can you tell? LOL
      My mom always takes days off work to come and visit me so we can do all of our fun Christmas-y stuff. My dad totally wouldn't be into that stuff, so it works better to have her come here. Still, it's nice to get back to my regular life now. I ended up picking up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell before bed last night and I'm liking it so far, so I'm hoping that means the end of this short-lived slump. Hope you find something you love, too! Have a great week! :D

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  11. Love, love, love the pictures, Jaime :) And I'm glad you had a great time with your mom! The last time I had a reading slump, reading Erin's book TAKEN actually helped me, but re-reading an old book could also work ;)

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    1. Thanks, Elodie! Like I mentioned to a few others here, I picked up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell before bed last night and so far I'm really enjoying it. Yay! Hope that means the slump is gone for good. Hope you're having a great week! :D

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  12. I jump around scenes for the same reason - some days, I'm just in the mood to write a particular kind of scene. Love the term 'literary punching bag'! I may have to steal it. :P

    Have a great week!

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    1. I would have such a hard time powering through a scene that I just wasn't feeling, you know? I would probably end up setting it aside and not working on it at all. Picking a scene I'm in the mood for keeps me writing, which is a good thing. And you can totally steal "literary punching bag". ;-) Have a wonderful week, Emma! :D

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  13. I always love your photo collages. I need to take more pictures!

    I've been on and off in a reading slump. I raced through a romance this week which got me back in the mood to devour. I have so many books i'd like to get through by the end of the year :)

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    1. Thanks, Stephanie! I totally bombard people on Instagram with stuff like this, so I always feel a bit bad about that lol.

      I think my reading slump is over, thank goodness. I picked up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell last night, and even though I'm not very far in, I can tell I'm going to like it. Phew! I hate reading slumps. There are just so many good books out there that it sucks to be ho-hum about what you're currently attempting to read. I'm hoping this means I will meet my Goodreads Reading Challenge goal after all. Have a great week! :D

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  14. Mmm... peppermint ice cream... Added to my shopping list! LOL

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    1. It was really tasty. Sometimes candy cane ice cream tastes almost soapy--weird, I know--but this one was perfect!

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  15. Love the photos. Hope you're having a great visit with Mom.

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  16. Okay, your super gorgeous food photos are making me incredibly hungry. Annnd now I want peppermint ice cream. (In a bad, bad way) :) That's one of our house favorites around Christmastime.

    Your photos are always so lovely, it makes me wish I could take better pictures. (Whenever I take pictures of food, they come out like frankenmonsters.) It looks like you've been having such a fun time with your Mom. But I totally get what you mean about being ready to get back to your regularly scheduled programming. ;)

    I really like what you said about writing out of order. I think focusing on scenes that relate to how you are currently feeling will lend a sense of authenticity to your WiP. But hah!, kissing scenes, I usually save those toward the end. I don't know why, except that perhaps I want to wait until my characters have really come into their own. (so to speak)

    Hope you have a glorious week!

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    1. Thanks, Kris! The candy cane ice cream was really yummy, especially with the little chocolate bits in it too! I'd send you some if I could. :-) I had a great time with my mom, but it's sort of hard to take time away from writing when I'm only just getting into it again. I'm hoping to get back into the swing of things again this week. You know, I hadn't really thought about saving the kissing scenes, but it makes great sense. It's almost like because you know your characters better, they probably know each other better too. Deepening your understanding of them deepens their relationship in a way. Food for thought. (You know, speaking of yummy food and all.) Have a wonderful week, Kris! :D

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  17. Love the pictures. I miss ice skating!
    Best of luck on your writing goals for the week :)

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    1. Thanks, Sarah! I actually didn't get to skate. I was just getting the kids on and off the ice in one piece in the course of my day subbing. I have skates, but I haven't done it in years. I might have to sometime! Have a great week! :D

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  18. I've been struggling for a while with my latest WIP, and I think I might try your advice about writing out of order. Thanks for the tip, and good luck with your writing goals this week. You have some lovely pictures there, by the way. :)

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    1. I think it was Veronica Roth who mentioned writing this way. (Some time back.) Between what she had to say and some other authors, I thought I'd give it a try. It hadn't really occurred to me before that I could actually write a story out of order, but it really works for me! You should give it a try, too! Have a great week, Majanka! :D

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  19. Your festive picture collage is making me even more excited about coming to visit soon! Love the new candy cane stripped scarf! I need to get and/or make some like that because you can never have too many scarves.

    It's kind of crummy that neither one of us is really enjoying WINTERSPELL. Not sure what that means for our festive Skype session. I guess we might just have to chat about whatever, which usually takes up several hours anyway lol. As long as there's Christmas tea and goodies involved, it'll be fun.

    I'm glad you had a good time with Mom, but also glad you plan on tackling a nice chunk of writing this week now that things are back to normal. I'm really eager to sample some snippets from your WIP. We should plan to exchange some pages when we get together at Christmas. Hope the words flow this week! :)

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    1. Thanks! I've been bombarding everyone on Instagram with all of my Christmas-y photos. They're probably about ready to unfollow me lol. Ah well. I can't help it. As for the scarf, it's my second Old Navy infinity scarf and I love it. Both of the scarves are jersey knit, so they're super light and easy to throw on and style. Plus, this one looks like candy!

      I set WINTERSPELL aside for now in favour of something I'd rather read. I'm in danger of not meeting my Goodreads Reading Challenge goal if I don't. I think I still need to read three books by the end of the month. Normally, that would be doable, but lately I've been so slow at finishing books. We should definitely just do a Christmas-y Skype session with yummy tea and Christmas treats. :-)

      I totally screwed the pooch on the writing front today. Between visiting blogs and designing a program for the band's Burns' Dinner, I really didn't get much done. I'm horrible for frittering away my time. I'll just have to make up those words on another day, I guess. I don't know how much I'll have written for you to look at, and it might be total crap. Fair warning. Really looking forward to seeing you guys this Christmas! :D

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  20. I hate writing slumps too. Hopefully, you'll get out that soon. I love that candy cane stripe scarf. It is so cute. Lately I've been writing out of order because this is when inspiration calls. I'd rather write ahead than sit and stare at the screen. Good luck with your writing goal this week!

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    1. Well, I picked up ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell before bed last night and so far I'm really enjoying it. Here's hoping that means the reading slump is over. I agree with you about writing ahead versus staring at the screen. That's exactly the reason I write out of order. Progress is progress, right? Have a wonderful week, Amy! :D

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  21. I think I just exited the almost eternal writing slump. Now, I'm praying it was an exit and won't come back for awhile. Writing out of order is a great idea -anything that works. As to those Christmas reads, that's too bad they are grabbing you. But with all the Christmas stuff going on (busy!), I find it hard to concentrate much on reading anyway. Hope you hit those goals!

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    1. Oh, I hope your writing slump is over! I'm struggling to get back into it, so I'm hoping this daily writing goal will help. 500 words a day should be doable. I've taken a bit of a departure from the Christmas reads and have returned to other stuff. That seems to be working, so that's good. Hope you have a wonderful week, Tonja! :D

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  22. I hope you had a lovely time with your mom! :)

    Oh dear, reading slumps can really suck but, just like writer's block, sometimes it just has to be embraced in favour of other things, whether it's doing something else creative or just sitting down to watch a good movie/tv show. You'll find the right book that gets you back into the swing of things soon enough!

    I completely get what you mean about writing out of order. When I'm feeling grumpy nothing makes me feel better than writing an argument. It's like giving yourself therapy. ;)

    Have a great weekend!

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