Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Books I've Read: Chasing Days

There was some lovely writing in this book, and I appreciated seeing a bisexual on the page. But ultimately there seemed to be too much going on, especially when the book really only covers fourteen days of Willa's life. And her friends' lives. 

The book captures that end-of-school feeling really well.  Teachers are still throwing work at the students, but no one really cares enough to do much of it.  Everyone is ready (or almost everyone) to take that next step and move out into the world.  The sense of breaking free oozes from every page.  

And the sense of loss that comes at the end of an era.  Friendships changing with the realization that people aren't going to be just around the corner from each other next year, or even next week.  Relationships falling apart for the same reason.

There was a lot to like - great parents (Willa's, not Teddy's), a positive and realistic attitude toward sex - but I just didn't connect with the main character. She seems not exactly content to drift, but accepting of the fact that's what she's doing. And even when she makes a decision to take a step toward discovering who she is, it isn't all that decisive.

Shame... There's a lot of potential here.

But don't just take my word for it.  Here's the blurb:

Two-weeks until Willa Wohlbreuk graduates.

Fourteen-days left for exams and senior pranks.

Three hundred-thirty-six-hours for friendships to unravel and to fall in and out of love.
Twenty thousand-one-hundred-sixty-minutes left to go wild and grow up.

And one million two-hundred-nine-thousand-six-hundred-seconds to figure out what freedom really means.

Willa faces her best friend Teddy—Theo now—as he defies his parents and reveals something about himself she never expected. Joss appears with blue hair and stirs things up. And Grady, finally, after four years, suddenly knows Willa’s name. Meanwhile, the undercurrent of uncertainty about the future dredges up the possibility that Willa isn’t even sure who she is. All she knows is life is about to change, epically

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Weekly Goals 13-8-18

The film festival finished (officially) last night so my life can return to its usual rhythm once more.  It was a great two weeks, and I saw some wonderful films.  In fact, of the 22 I saw, I think there were only three I didn't think were excellent.  And I didn't hate those three either, just enjoyed them less than the others.

So now that I'm not going to films every day, it's time to get back into my book being written by prompts.  I feel like I'm probably just shy of halfway through the story now, so it's time to get to the big crisis point and start dragging Luke out the other side.  I would like to write 6 new chapters this week, but I'll be happy with 5 if the prompts work for me.

Other goals are around taking better care of myself after two weeks of not sleeping enough and irregular eating.  I need to get back into a good routine with sleeping, eating and exercise.

What are your goals this week?

Friday, August 10, 2018

Celebrate the Small Things 10-8-18

This post is part of Lexa Cain's bloghop, Celebrate the Small Things. Head on over there to join up!

What am I celebrating this week?

I have been invited to join the group blog for writers, Operation Awesome.  I'm looking forward to joining the team over there on Thursdays to answer any questions about the writing and publishing process.  You can read my first little introduction on the site here.

It's the final weekend of the film festival so life goes back to normal come Monday.  It's always such a sad thing when the festival ends, but at the same time, there's a sense of relief at being able to come home each night at a normal hour.  And I'm looking forward to getting back to work on my book.

My best friend is in town tonight playing a gig.  So after seeing two film festival films, I'm off to that.

What are you celebrating this week?

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Welcome author Niki Cluff and Breed

I'm entertaining a fellow Evernight Teen author on the blog today.  Niki Cluff is a debut author whose book Breed was released a few days ago.  So I thought it would be fun to bring Niki here to talk a little bit about herself and Breed.

Welcome, Niki!  I hope you don't mind answering a few questions.

If you could swap places with one of your fictional characters for 24 hours, who would you choose to be? 

I'd probably switch with Kyle, the main character of BREED.

Why? And what would you do that day?

Because Ichiro is hot and I want to learn kendo and mixed martial art which she learns from Irchio at the academy.

In what way is your story unique compared to other books in this genre?

I got the idea from watching Married at First Sight. I wanted to write a story where the characters gradually fell in love instead of love at first sight. And I've always sort of wondered how people plan to repopulate earth after a disaster that could wipe out humanity.

What part of the story was the most fun to write? The most challenging?

The car chase scene. I do really well with action scenes.

Which of your characters is most like you?

I think I'm a balanced mixture of Kyle and Ichiro. They both tend to keep to themselves, but Kyle likes to cook and is a video gamer which I also share with her.

If you could have one superpower, what would it be and how would you use it?

I'd stop time. What I wouldn't give to have more time to accomplish things in a day.

If you could reenact a scene from any book (not necessarily your own), what would it be? Who would you choose for your scene partner(s)?

I'd live through Stephanie Garbers Caraval. Any parts of Caraval, to be honest. And I know that Julian isn't Korean, but I'd definitely choose TOP from BigBang to play him because he's gorgeous.

Tell us something we’d be surprised to learn about you.

I'm terrified of aliens. I remember my dad watching a documentary once when I was little and the scene where the aliens "probed" humans horrified me.

Do you have a nervous habit when writing? A guilty pleasure when writing? (example: chew a pen to death or have a stack of Hershey’s kisses while you write)

I chew on my pens. And keep chocolate chips nearby. And I love listening to video game soundtracks while writing.

Thanks for coming by, Niki.  And good luck with your new release.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Weekly Goals 6-8-18

This week is just going be about getting through the week.  I'm not going to put any additional pressure on myself to write because it's been so crazy busy that's just stress I don't need.  If I manage to squeeze in a couple of chapters, all good. If not, also all good.  I have a couple of night off with no films, so I'll write those nights, but the others, probably not.

I've seen some wonderful films in the last week, and some that weren't quite so good. And this week has more wonderful films in store.  I love this time of year, but I will be glad when it's over.  It's pretty exhuasting.  Especially since the bus service has decided to completely change everything and it now seems to take over an hour to get home when the films finish.

What are your goals this week?

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Celebrate the Small Things 3-8-18

This post is part of Lexa Cain's bloghop, Celebrate the Small Things. Head on over there to join up!

What am I celebrating this week?

It's Friday!

It has been a crazy week and even though my weekend is busy too, I'm looking forward to it.  

I've been stupidly busy at work and with the film festival filling my evenings, I feel like I've barely been home all week.

But I've seen some wonderful films.  In fact, I've seen seven so far, and they have all been good in their own way.  Fingers crossed that remains the case for the rest of the festival.  Nine more days to go!

With all that going on, I haven't had much chance to write.  I did get a couple of chapters done this week though, and have drafted a guest blog post I'm doing.  I hope to manage another couple of chapters over the weekend and to polish up that blog post.

What are you celebrating this week?