I first began keeping a journal in seventh grade for an assignment in my Humanities class, and I’ve kept one pretty regularly ever since. These days, I have four journals that all serve different purposes.
- My nightly journal is a paper Sierra Club weekly calendar with fairly small spaces, just enough to write five lines of prose in small script. I use it to reflect back on the events of the day and any highlights. It gives me a sense of completion and personal significance, like my day mattered to… Continue reading
Let me share a little secret with you. I don’t always know what I’m doing. I lack reliable systems for writing a novel or growing as an artist or taking my work to the next level. A proper path, pattern or school doesn’t exist for writers like me. I’m stuck with training myself.
What I do is get up each morning and keep working, and sometimes, it really doesn’t get me anywhere. I recently abandoned a novel I’d been working on for half a year because I simply could not… Continue reading
I came upon a haiku I wrote while I was working on the Birthmarked trilogy, and it felt like a message to myself across time. It exactly captures the sense of my mind opening up with new space while I’m writing, and the doubleness I feel when my characters come alive.
Why I Write
Where Gaia calls one
side of me to the other
the wasteland opens
Holidays are great. I love the extra time with family, the colorful lights, the music, and the good food. The fun certainly involves a change in routine. Some people who have vacation over the holidays hope to work more on their novels, while conversely, people who write for a living might find their normal work time gets squeezed. In the past, I’ve had major deadlines of January 1st, and the mix of writing pressure and fear of disappointing my family has been grueling. Even without a major deadline, finding a… Continue reading
We try to clean up and organize our thoughts when we express them so others can understand us and like us and follow our trains of thought, but in our own minds we don’t need to explain. And sometimes if we can write only purely what we’re thinking, if the mash and muddle of the confusion behind our lids could land on a page like bird bone black twigs light as pepper, they could fall into miniature runes, messages from the gods or the jungle or the fairy dust, and… Continue reading
If I could only revise novels and never have to write a first draft again, I’d be a happy camper. As it is, I’m delving into a new novel, with new characters and new terrain, and after two tries, I’ve made it past the first 100-page milestone of my first draft. I may end up cutting much of what I’ve written, but it seems solid enough to keep going, and that’s a relief.
Every morning, I return to the spot where my characters ended the day before, read the last… Continue reading