My Favorite Writing Resources

I’ve been writing since I was about 5 or 6 years old. Naturally, as I’m gotten more serious about it, I’ve found a lot of resources that I absolutely LOVE. Today I wanted to share a few of them with you all.

1. Writing Excuses

I’ve talked about this podcast before, and I honestly can’t get enough of it. The advice is amazing and it’s just so marvelously entertaining.

2. Pinterest

If you ever need a reference picture for anything, go to Pinterest. For real. You can also find a lot of prompts and advice.

3. NaNoWriMo

For those of us who sometimes struggle with making ourselves actually write. I love the accountability of this program, plus it’s a crazy adrenaline rush at times.

4. Springhole.net Random Generators

This website has saved my life so many times. It’s probably a bit more useful for sci-fi/fantasy writers, but there are plenty of generators for other genres.

5. Every baby-naming website ever

Because characters need names. I’m prone to spending hours naming minor characters, so everything I can do to make things easier for myself I do.

I know this was a quick post, but I just wanted to take a few minutes to share these resources with any writers out there.

Also, there are full-length videos of Brandon Sanderson’s college lectures on YouTube. For free. I’m watching them and taking so many notes.

What’s your favorite writing resource?

-Clara

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Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson

mistborn

The Mists rule the night.
The Lord Ruler owns the world.

Once, a hero arose to save the world. A young man with a mysterious heritage courageously challenged the darkness that strangled the land.

He failed.

For a thousand years since, the world has been a wasteland of ash and mist ruled by the immortal emperor known as the Lord Ruler. Every revolt has failed miserably.

Yet somehow, hope survives. Hope that dares to dream of ending the empire and even the Lord Ruler himself. A new kind of uprising is being planned, one built around the ultimate caper, one that depends on the cunning of a brilliant criminal mastermind and the determination of an unlikely heroine, a street urchin who must learn to master Allomancy, the power of a Mistborn.

(Goodreads)

Again I’m questioning why I didn’t pick up a certain book sooner, which seems to be a trend lately. This time, the book is The Final Empire, book one of Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn trilogy.

I am so glad I finally got around to reading this and will most certainly be reading more Sanderson in the near future.

I picked this up specifically for writing purposes. Brandon is on my favorite podcast (Writing Excuses), and after hearing him talk about the way he writes I knew I needed to actually read some of his writing.

I also know Brandon is a serious outliner, which I am not, but I could feel how thoroughly the book was plotted anyway. That sounds like it would be a little frustrating, but I actually liked seeing the tightness of it.

Writing aside, the book is amazing.

It’s an engrossing plot, made better by the wonderful characters. Vin, Kelsier, and Elend were my favorites, but I loved how each and every character was distinctive.

Vin’s character development is probably the best thing about this book. I absolutely adored seeing her gain confidence in herself over the course of the story. Kelsier was great- he sorta reminded me of Carswell Thorne for some reason? And Elend was really interesting, and I am all for characters who go against the status quo.

The magic system is unique: ingesting metals for magical powers. I liked it more than I expected to, honestly. I tend to prefer very traditional magic systems, if that makes sense, but I really did love this one.

The world-building was done well, too. I will say that I didn’t imagine everything as vividly (except for the balls, but um, fancy parties are like my favorite thing) as I usually do, but that didn’t bug me one bit.

And the court intrigue was just plain AMAZING. I’ve really been craving all the court politics and whatnot and this book gave it to me.

My one issue was the romance. I love the couple and I think they’re going to be an amazing power couple in books 2&3, but I feel like I needed a little more development. The relationship was developed, but not exactly the romantic side of things. Also, I was really hoping for a better first kiss. It’s a really small thing in the grand scheme of things, but first kisses are so important to me in a book and it bugs me when authors just say “they kissed” or something along those lines and don’t tell me what it felt like.

Despite that, I really loved Mistborn and have already started the sequel, The Well of Ascension. You should definitely pick this up if you’re a fan of fantasy, court intrigue, and/or unique magic systems.

Have you read Mistborn or any other Brandon Sanderson novels?

-Clara

Underappreciated Book Boyfriends

I saw this on another blog a very long time ago, and now I can’t find what blog it is? For some reason it’s not coming up anywhere…I think it was Windowsill Book Blog. If it was your post, please let me know!

I’ve had this post in my head for a while and am finally getting around to doing it.

I feel like the book blogging community (myself included) tends to talk about a lot of the same fictional guys and forget about the others. Don’t get me wrong, I love a lot of those guys, but there others that deserve more love than they get. I wanted to share just a few.

1. Amar and Vikram, The Star-Touched Queen and A Crown of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi

These are two of my favorite books and I love both of these men for different reasons. Amar is very loyal and reserved, and I really respect that. He’s so good to Maya and is very patient with her.

Vikram is hilarious and his banter with Gauri is everything. He’s brave, adventurous and, like Amar, loyal. But mainly absolutely hysterical.

2. Mr. Bradford, Entwined by Heather Dixon

entwined cover

To be completely honest, Keeper was my immediate love in this book, but umm…. Read the book.

Mr. Bradford is a complete Prince Charming. He’s just so sweet and kind and I love him for it. Seeing his relationship with Azalea grow is such a joy to read.

And this is still one of my favorite books, by the way. It’s wonderful on so many levels.

3. Rook, An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson

eor

Rook is just generally an amazing love interest. I love that he’s fae and that he’s conflicted and mysterious. Honestly though I love the whole book but Rook was a large part of that. If you haven’t read this please go do it now.

4. Ignifex, Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

cruel-beauty

If you like dark, brooding, villainous men in your books, go read this. Ignifex is so charming and smooth and funny in the best way. He’s also a super interesting character in general.

5. Alexei, Black Widow: Forever Red

wp-1482607539039.jpg

Alexei is my sweet little child and I love him so much and wish I could keep him somewhere where he would never get hurt. He is so sweet and innocent and kind and loving and I just can’t.

SPOILER

Also, he died and I cried for like an hour at midnight. It was not a good night.

END SPOILER

And by the way, Margaret Stohl, where is the third book? I’m not bitter at all.

 

There are a lot more, because I love my fictional guys to death and could talk about them forever, but these are some of the most underrated ones in my own opinion.

And as a side note, I’m reading Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson right now and it’s fantastic. I don’t have any crushes yet but I can see one happening at some point.

Anyway. Who are some of your fictional crushes who don’t get enough love? 

-Clara

The Liebster Award

Ann nominated me for the Liebster Award! Thank you!

liebsteraward

Here’s the rules:

  1. Link to Global Aussie’s Award blog post. Comment with a link to your Award post. And put the official Liebster Award stamp on your blog.
  2. Acknowledge and link to the blogger who nominated you.
  3. Answer the 11 questions your nominator asked.
  4. Nominate 11 more bloggers and spread the ‘new blogger’ love.
  5. Ask them 11 fun questions of your own.
  6. Let them know on their blogs that you have nominated them.

Ann’s questions:

What has been the hardest struggle to overcome to keep on blogging?

Sometimes I just get burnt out, I guess? And I’m also insanely busy all the time, which makes it difficult to find time for blogging. It’s tech week for another show right now so I’m honestly surprised I’m managing this.

What’s your favorite music to listen to while writing or reading or whatever other activity you do?

I am borderline obsessed with film scores. Pirates of the Caribbean and The Hunger Games are my favorite, but I’ve lately fallen in love with Ramin Djawadi’s score for Game of Thrones (I don’t watch the show, but honestly, the music is spectacular.) I listen to these for writing, reading, and just generally everything.

When I run, I really enjoy podcasts or audiobooks- they help take my mind off the running. Writing Excuses is my favorite podcast and I recommend it to every writer.

Do you plan your blogs in advance and schedule their release or just blog by the seat of your pants? Or a combo?

Sometimes I schedule posts, but it’s a rarity. Usually I just blog when I have a moment and an idea, or when I’ve finished a book and desperately need to review it.

Having a familiar gives you magical powers, but the only one available is a spider. This is your only chance! Do you accept your familiar and the magic it gives you or light a match and run away? (No, you can’t transform it into another animal. It must remain a spider. Nice try though!)

Ummm…. I am terrified of spiders, but magical powers…? I have no idea what I’d do. I’d have to be in the actual situation to give an answer.

What food could you eat all day, every day and never get sick?

I’m not sure there is one. I’m a fan of variety in my food. I do love ice cream (and I’m not eating dairy at the moment, which has forced me to try the dairy-free ice creams, and let me tell you, they’re amazing) and lots of different foreign foods.

What TV show could you binge watch over and over?

BBC’s Merlin. I absolutely love everything about it, especially Arthur. If you haven’t watched it, go do it. You won’t regret it.

What’s the one blog post you are most proud of?

Female Villains vs. Male Villains: A Discussion

I know this is a short one, but it was really interesting and there were a lot of good comments.

Have you ever played a song on repeat so many times you got sick of it? If so, what song?

No, I don’t think so. Sometimes I’ll need a break from a song, but I’ve never gotten so sick of a song that I hate it from that point on.

If your home was on fire and you could only save one book, which would it be?

The copy of Captain Guinevere I used as a guestbook when I had my release party.

What’s your favorite water sport? To play and/or watch.

I don’t play sports at all (so I sorta run CC but only because my friend does and we talk the whole time), but I do enjoy watching Olympic swimming every four years.

What book do you wish you never read?

Robinson Crusoe is still my least favorite book in the entire world. I just generally hate survival books and I just can’t deal with this one. Unfortunately, I’ve had to read it more than once for different school courses.

I’m nominating:

Bernadette

Flavia

Bekah

Angelica

Alan

Veronica

Kat

Norees

Meilin

Annabeth

And you!

My questions:

  1. Your favorite book of the year?
  2. Reylo: yes or no?
  3. Plot or character?
  4. Favorite place to shop?
  5. If you could go on an all-expenses paid vacation, where would it be and what would you do?
  6. Favorite musical?
  7. Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts?
  8. Ice cream or donuts?
  9. Favorite superhero?
  10. French or Spanish?
  11. Literature or science?

Please don’t feel like you have to do the award if you don’t want to, but if you do, please link back to me so I can see your answers!

-Clara