I HAVE A STORY

Well

Can somebody direct me into a Crash Course on Click Bate titles? Please?

I digress, grab a drink and a hearty bowl of popcorn, marshmallows, and chocolate (Fany cooking post coming soon)-and settle down, because boy, do I have a story for you.

So recently I’ve had to take a bit of a break from blogging-and as I’ve stated, mentally and physically, I’ve been through some stuff.

That being said- during that time I was surviving off of college classes and other classes-specifically, an English class.

And might I just say, English class actually gave me quite a bit of anxiety.

I know, I know, the irony.

See, the thing is, I’m a lot of things (entertaining, adorable, clever, the list goes on), but I am above all, not the most excellent person; grammatically. I might have a general idea, but everything I’ve grown up with (from how to place commas, to fragments), was blown completely out of the water.

So anyway, my teacher was a good teacher, she worked with my constant emails (midnight panics as my grade dropped from a B to a B minus), and was overall very reasonable.

Again, though, grammar was suddenly something I was lacking in, and very suddenly, I couldn’t stand constructive criticism.

So it was my last paper rounding the corner, I had managed to pass that, but the paper I had worked so hard on (How to Save the World), had failed. My teacher had, however, given me the chance to rewrite it, and boy, did I take it.

My citation, it was scum, I was at the writing center twice, to find out how, and then to double-check that I had done it right-however, I still needed to do more.

The grammar, total trash, the layout? Actual peril.

My poor internet besties had to listen to my panic attacks about my grade as well as everything else.

And while there are benefits to being good friends with a plethora of writers, they couldn’t be at my beck and call, trying to fix the mess that was my paper.

What they could do, however, was come up with one HEXUVA suggestion.

Try Grammarly.

Naturally, I was like “Psshh, yeah, whatever”, the stubborn bored person in me doesn’t take help from ANYONE.

However, the stubborn bored person also needed to make sure this grammar hit the mark, and while I was still prodding through fixing it, and it had bettered a great deal, it was still something that you’d find in a Wattpad fan-fiction (A.K.A every single one of my stories).

So I relented, and made the plunge, opening up the browser, I created an account.

And I pasted my paper to the little checker and wow-WAS I SURPRISED. While it did give me general things that I had missed, it also showed me where to tighten up my paper, and things beyond that. Suddenly, I was seeing mistakes, and realizing how I could make the paper better!

And the happily ever after lands where we are today with a nice healthy B.

The point is, that yes, I’m here to promote Grammarly, but my desire to, came from what I experienced from it, and can I just say, the help it provided was incredible. I HIGHLY suggest, that if you’re a student, blogger, or writer (or in general just a person who relies on proper grammar), you check out Grammarly-which I happen to have a link for.

 

That being said, let me know do you use Grammarly? What are your thoughts about it?

New post coming Wednesday!

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Story Starter Boot Camp: Settings

Now, I know what you’re thinking.

About food, most likely, or I don’t know, on the off chance you’re thinking about me posting…

Well…

I’m a teenager who takes a lot in, being a drill sergeant isn’t really my niche.

But you know what is?

Running this story starter boot camp!

It’s time to delve deep into the world of settings, and when I say world, I mean more then just your settings or world-this is becoming more complicated then it should be.

Sharpen your pencils, have a test “Clickety-clack” on your keyboard, and let’s “clickety-crack” down.

(I am SO not sorry).

*(Yes, I really am).

Settings can be complicated, especially for yours truly, often times I leave alot to be desired, and I think it’s something several writers can attest to having trouble with.

Especially when writing about a place you don’t know too much about, which is, when starting a story and setting the scene, I’ve got a few tips to get the inspiration grooven’ and the general information and fundamental’s moven’.

(Again I am both sorry, and not sorry).

1. Bust out the travel guides.

When creating a story, it’s often said that you write what you know-where you’ve been, what you’ve done, but if you’re anything like me, this concept can be a little awkward, as you try to write your stories furthest from reality. However, while writing what you know is a definite contender, I suggest you break out the travel guides, to get an idea of where you want your story to take place, and get some general information.

2. Map your place.

Now that you’ve chosen your place, whether it be city direct, or just a general providence/state, get a general idea of where your story is taking place. Are you creating a town in France? Where in France? Is it set permanently in France, or do they travel around? While these are things you might nowt have planned out just yet, it’s important to think about, and get a map set up of where you think the city, whether imaginary or real, is, and what opportunities surround it.

3. Dive into History

Now, I’m not a personal fan of History, I could never memorize dates, and to be honest, events don’t fascinate me as much as humans interactions.

*AHEM*

Psychology.

I digress, it’s still very important to have general information and history on this town, whether that’s something you have to create (I will release a blog post on this topic following boot camp), or a history existing. This will give you some description to play with, a possibly something to revert back to, should your story need it.

4. Research Cultures, Traditions, Religion, Population, and any other social aspects of things that occur in the country/area that your story is set in. It would be very strange to have a prominent Jewish community if it were actually Catholic or possibly Buddhist community. Make certain to note the struggles that your characters might have. Don’t forget to research the industry, and social status, as this information can also play into your character.

5. Research the Architecture, as well as the people’s responses to outsiders, and in general their responses to social situations.

I’m not sure how logical a Tudor home in predominately traditional Spanish style villas. It would also be strange to have the characters open to outsiders, if they were struggling after a war.

Of course, while this is just the general idea for setting the scene, a few more tips for this will be listed down below with your prompt of the day, and your tip.

***********

As always, I hope to see you back next week, pencil ready, thinking caps on, because we’re not even close to finished on your work of art.

Writers Boot Camp: Side Characters

Of course, with any good story, comes the side characters to support it.

Let me put it like this:

Support walls are taken for granted until the ceiling falls in.

Now the image is in your head of your side characters (that you most likely haven’t created yet), are stuck in a wall, I’d just like to say, welcome back to Week Four of Boot Camp.

You seem to be shaping up very nicely.

You’re story is slowly starting to come along, and now we’ve reached a key part.

If you couldn’t tell-it’s our side characters, the important best-friend, but not the main character.

Of course, every story has the following Side character:

The bully

The best friend.

However, your story has to hold more then these two bits of information, so let’s explore the world of creating your characters.

1. Start with the supportive role-the Best Friend

Or at the very least, the key influencial person in your main character’s life.

Try to pick out traits that your character doesn’t posses, and add them into the story. Perhaps your main character is a bit more impulsive, however the advice-giving character would most likely be a little bit more thought out, or perhaps it’s the other way around, either way, make sure that there is a chance for conflict, even if the characters lack that later on the story-this gives a few opportunities to help cut back on writer’s block, if need be.

2. Note the Important Characteristics

While you won’t need to know specifically if your Supporting-side-role is a Crest toothpaste fan, or not (unless you have a seen for that, planned, in which case, I chime in to say the whitening tooth paste does not, in fact, work), you will need to have an idea of characteristics that stick out in the character’s personality, such as being an eternal optimist, or having a dog fetish (I NEED TO KNOW, for scientific reasons, of course).

3. Don’t forget the negative traits – Just to sprinkle in the drama….

*spills vat of quarks and qualms into character*

Make certain that the side characters aren’t just very wise, and incredibly in tune with emotions and life itself. (Or in some stories cases, completely ignorant with a splash of annoying). Perhaps you’re character is an eternal optimist, toward everyone else, however, they make self-deprecating jokes. Or they are incredibly confident, and have a tendency to be over baring.The choice is yours, just avoid over-exaggerating.

4. Don’t be afraid to give your side-characters as much depth as your main character. Harry Potter wouldn’t have been as good with Dumbledore, or the Weasley twins. The same concept goes for Guardians of the Galaxy, or even Little Women.

5. Build a back story for your character. It can be easy to let it slip by (or even over build), a back story for your side character. Perhaps their parents are divorced, or they have a good home life, but something is still holding them back? Why is that?

*To avoid over-building, try to get the basics, but don’t go from age one to their current age, as nice as it might be, you’re characters side characters also should not take up ALL or even a majority of the story. This could also be helpful, should you decide that you want to write a book surrounding a side character.

Okay, now this is just a general run-down of how to build your side characters, understand that they aren’t an under-rated main character, they’re just as important.

I expect to see you back next week, ready to take on the next part of this boot camp.

Be practicing.

Stay Ginchy!

HaziWords

Boot Camp: The Main Squeezes

Well hello there,

I see your back.

Was last week not hard enough for you? Well get ready, because this week is about to be a whole lot harder.

Last week we went over how to start a plot.

This week?

We’re getting to the Poster of the story, what keeps it looking fresh, the Politicians to our countries; our main characters.

That’s right, we’re talking about how to start with a character (which I actually received a few tips from my friends-something I’m eternally grateful for)!

1. Start with a name- Something I found interesting was discovering that some writers actually chose names with meaning behind them. Choose your character’s name based off of the meaning.

2. Add a positive trait. Make certain to give the character a distinct trait that appears throughout the book-one that remains constant, or perhaps grows stronger.

3. Add a Negative trait. This trait won’t change, but will be something that appears as a battle, or even something they struggle to recognize. Even at the end of the book, let them continue to have this trait; this will give you, and your readers something to relate to.

4. Add traits that coincide with the first two, and then add an odd-ball. One person doesn’t have a set of traits they follow, and internal conflict of your character is very important, this is highly common in popular stories. It’s a unique idea, but once again, gives your reader something they can relate to, and watch eagerly for the change.

5. Add appearance outlines. While in your story you might not describe the character word-for-word, it’s still important to give at least yourself, a general idea of what your character looks like. Uncertain about appearances? Take certain physical traits from your characters (not literally), and add them together.

6. Add a partner-in-crime. Or perhaps, your character is a loner, either way, it’s important to add multiple characters of some sort for dialogue. Using the steps above, create a character that is the bread to your main character(s) butter.

Most importantly, don’t freak out. Creating characters and developing connections with them can be hard, but you’re hard headed, after all, that’s why your here.

I hope to see you back next week, and let’s hope you did your studying, because it’s going to be an interesting one.

Week One: Plotting Things

Suit up, soldier, we’re going into battle.

I mean, the battle of the mind, and this week, in the Week One of Story Starter Boot Camp, we’re going over how to start the plotting process. And to all you plotting to murder someone, or go after the fridge, or the Declaration of Independence (I don’t know what you do on your past time, I just like to believe that you all are doing it well, and living your best life), sit down, this isn’t for you.

The blue prints were hard to get, okay?

What?

I have a lot of time in between sleeping and living.

Like, three minutes, but don’t judge me.

I digress, you’ve gotten me off track!

Here’s some tips on how to start a plot.

Pens and Notepads…

ready…

1. Start with the scenery.

I actually went to this Writing Conference, where published author, Amanda J. Mcgee,

talked about scenery, and the importance of it. (By the way, I’ve just got to say, I do not have scenery writing capabilities as of yet, but we will get their). Her advice was to write about a place we know (this is not a direct quote, most of my things are still in boxes while I slim down my collection of things…). So if you’re having a hard time writing a scenery, write what you know about. Write about something your familiar with. Hex, go to the grocery store and take it all in. Write it down, the experience, maybe write about you being there, or stretch the tale a bit of what happened. (I’ve got to say, her suggestion was possibly the most effective one).

2. Bring in a character.

Who would fit in the scenery? Who wouldn’t? Now that you have the scenery, start to choose your ammunition. Perhaps your character is at a Hot Topic, but they’re actually a prep (I mean, to be fair, as much as I want to belong, I don’t think I fit in Hot Topic like I’d like). Maybe it’s a Skater Kid, who’s a book worm, you don’t know. Add conflicting quarks to your character. Give your character another internal turmoil, besides what the main story path.

3. Pick a Genre

So now you have a scenery, your main character(s), now it’s time to pick your genre. Make sure it fits, and your not forcing it. Start with just one genre, perhaps it’s a fantasy story that the scenery and characters fit in. Now that you have those, this should be a little easier.

4. Work on a conversation

This can be anywhere in the story, in any situation, it doesn’t matter, just write a dialogue for your character. Try to imagine them actually having this conversation.

Of course, now that you’re working on this, it’s going to take time to put together a plot. This is just the foundation, to build your story up, it’s going to take some creativity.

Your Assignment this week: Start with the Scenery and Characters. One bite at a time-write a scene, and then add the character.

Study These Tips, and take them (or don’t, it doesn’t bug me), to heart.

I hope to see you back next week, in better shape!

***I should make it clear I’m not a professional, and I do things a bit backward. If this doesn’t work for you, don’t be surprised, I’m still new to this, but I genuinely hope this helps!***

Remember to live your life like the ginchy story that it is!

HaziWords

Story Starter Boot Camp OverView

I took a nap yesterday and I’m just now feeling like my normal self, so if that doesn’t explain why I don’t take naps, I don’t know what will.

WELL HELLO THERE.

That was aggressive, but also completely besides the point.

It ’tis I, the great Hazi, the writing QUEEN, here to give you your dream series, the series we’ve all wanted, but never had.

All in one neat 2 month (technically it’s Seven Weeks of Tips, not Eight, but let’s roll with it), package.

Now of course, you might be wondering, what’s the series going to cover? Is this like those church series that Pastor’s have? Am I going to have to bring a notebook? Should I chug caffeine? Should I bring bandages because you’re going to say things that hurt?

NO.

Except maybe caffeine, I mean, if you need caffeine, I guess? Weirdly enough they have these caffeine chocolate bars at my college campus, and I don’t know how to feel about them.

*Sip Diet Aspartame*

Moving On.

This series is for all of you out there struggling with how to start a story, when you want to start one, but those characters won’t flow, the story line won’t mold, or those thoughts that won’t make since. It’s for the insomniacs who want something to think about besides how exhausted they are (been there). It’s for the writers who have finished novels and are working on there next, and most of all, it’s for me.

Because let me tell you, writing a book from scratch is not easy.

So, what will this series boot camp provide?

Prompts

Advice

Writing Drills (It’s now a thing)

Reading and Writing Assignments

Rhetorical Questions (That you have to answer in your head)

Sarcasm (Because it wouldn’t be my type of series without it).

Are you ready?

Good.

Now, for an overview.

Now it’s occurred to me a calendar set up might work, but I’ve also come to realize that I don’t actually know how to make those, and these posts go up weekly on Tuesdays (with the exception of Today-Wednesday, because of my nap yesterday).

So, enjoy this super-aesthetic bulletin schedule I’ve put together.

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What you will need:

Your Favorite Pen (If you don’t have one-get one, treasure it, yell at others for touching it, clean it, loose it, cry about loosing it, find a new favorite pen.)

A Notebook (But not a pretty one, because if you’re like me, your dedication won’t stick).

A Determined Attitude

Creativity

Enthusiasm

Are you ready? Because these next few weeks are going to be quiet the journey, and I’m going to need your best work!

Stay Ginchy, Get Rest, and be ready to shine.

HaziWords

 

 

Writing Tips (I’m kind of a genius)

Greetings and salutations! It ’tis I, Hazi!

So originally I was going to make a post on how NOT to start a story, however, I’ve found myself picking up a few writers tips, so, here I am to introduce you to some of the tips and tricks I’ve picked up recently.

Let’s roll out.

***I’m coming for your brand, Optimus Prime.****

1. A Play List

But not just a playlist, but a playlist for my characters themselves. Often times, I think it helps me get in the mood.

Like on Wattpad (Shameless plug, check out my current running story-Anonymous), I have a character, Miles, and whilst trying to find a playlist that inspired me, it pained me to admit that he wasn’t the nostalgic listener like I though-but actually liked Imagination Dragons, and Twenty-One Pilots, both okay bands, but considering I’ve had friends who played them endlessly, not my thing. But seriously, taking into account that I like to write characters from all walks of life, and enjoyments, I think getting a general idea of their tunes would definitely be something that would count.

2. An inspiration board.

Seriously, when I’m trying to write out a story, I often find myself stuck. Not to mention, we create inspiration boards for ourselves, why not for our characters? It’s like taking an Aesthetic board to a whole new level. Take clippings of places that might look like settings, quotes, clothing styles, and hey, if you want, even add the type of actor/actresses you’d like to play if your story were to become a movie (unless you are writing a movie, because then your that much closer to actor/actress idea). And if you’re the type who is writing non-fiction, the same still goes, just use images about what your writing about, as well as quotes.

3. If you get stuck, try a new approach.

I think one of the hardest thing’s I’ve learned is how I can continue on a story line. As a writer, especially fictional writing, we’re expected to write people’s escape from society, and add twists and turns. Rather then staying on the same path, maybe you need to switch it up for yourself. I’m not saying you should change the murderer if all the clues pointed to them, but if you wanted, go back through and scatter a few more, and switch it up for you as well. Not only will this keep YOU interested, but your readers will be more then happy to have the change.

4. Try living as your Character

Okay, so I actually made a blog post a good while ago about this, but in sum up, I suggested living as your character to the best of your ability. It’s like a fun cosplay, only you get to experience things a little bit more as your own character. For example, you may have to go to school, but maybe you should interact the same way your character might (or don’t, I get that school can be brutal), maybe try out their diet (if you don’t have a special one you have to follow-don’t hurt yourself from this AT ALL), or their morning routine. Maybe just wear something that reminds you of your character. Either way, give cosplay of your child a try.

That got weird fast.

5. Do some Mundane Chores

This one’s a weird one, right? But here’s the thing, where I work, I usually end up having to wipe down tables which is actually just really, really boring. However, I try to entertain myself, by either talking to God, or working on my stories. Seriously, the amount of quirky conversations my characters have while I’m working is just…wild. So if you’re having a hard time getting all of that down, just do a few mundane chores. Maybe you can combine the top, previous, and current suggestion, to have one big mash?

Not to mention, you’re getting stuff done, so it’s a big win!

That wraps up this weeks Writer’s Square. I’ll be releasing a new February schedule soon, which will be a bit more light, mainly because I’m starting one of my classes that might take up more time.

That being said, do you have any writing tips? Have you tried any of these writing tips? I’d love to know!

Remember to live your life like the ginchy story that it is!

HaziWords