Quiet Writing Days & Muni Diaries Submissions

Things have been relatively quiet on the writing front lately; not much writing in terms of leisure/pleasure, but exercising my writing muscle at work and through academic essays. I’ve been also reading a lot, flying through a book per week on average. Reading for speed isn’t a big goal of mine, but I find myself feeling quite satisfied when I’m able to pick up a book that’s THAT good that I can’t even put it down for a moment.

I’ve had a few of my older blog posts featured over at Muni Diaries, a local flavor blog on the wonderful public transportation system here. It’s been one of my favorite blogs to read ever since I discovered it via Twitter about a month or two ago; it’s just nice and amusing to read what others have to say/think about their daily bus rides. There’s always something new to write about when riding on the bus anyway: new characters for future writing, interesting conversations picked up, etc.

And in other news, I somehow must have missed the sudden increase, but I just checked and found that I had 15 new fans on my Facebook Page. That’s a rather big jump from the last time I visited the page. It’s great to see that people are checking in on my works (albeit, I haven’t posted recently); just 70 more fans to go before I can customize my URL for my page. It’s not so important, but it’ll make my Page a little more personable, right?

Gorgeous Friday in San Francisco; More Book Work


It was certainly a gorgeous day outside today, so I decided to go out and take a walk at Lands End Park/Sutro District. I hadn’t been back since September, despite the location being relatively close to my place. The weather has been unseasonably warm and sunny here all week; today was my first day to be able to take advantage of the weather, though.

Even though I spent a couple of hours at the park, the majority of my day was spent back in my apartment before and after the outing. I woke up at my usual time to get some work done on my website; it’s registered, it’s there, but no content yet (was working on that earlier). I say that it’s scheduled to launch in February just to give myself these next couple of weeks to finish editing/revising a few short stories so I can present them on the website right when it launches. So, bookmark the page and stay tuned to this blog–there will definitely be content there soon. =)

I also signed up for Facebook and Myspace again…despite my feelings towards re-joining those sites for personal reasons. But, this time, I realize I am able to separate my professional self from my personal self–that I will try my best not to get myself caught up in the past again. I’ll only be using the websites for what the founders really wanted to use them for: networking.

Tonight I topped off the full day of progress by completing my movable outline. I’m noticing more and more plot holes in my novel than before; the rest of this weekend is going to be reserved for shuffling up the plot a bit before I go back and actually start micro-editing. I know editing is a long process, but so far it seems like I am going at a good pace. =)

Taking the Next Step–

Thanks for the feedback on my entry about what I should do to self-promote for my writings/novels. For those of you who follow my Twitter, you may have noticed my Tweet about what I plan to do within the next couple of weeks or so:

  • New email account – I would set up my official email through this new account, just so I won’t be receiving a huge amount of mail at my two existing (personal) email accounts. All writing related mail would go to this account.
  • Set up a Facebook Page – I have been researching ways I can get around creating a personal profile on Facebook again (as you can see, I am really trying hard to avoid that option); apparently, I can just create a “Business” account and I could create a Page for myself. However, I’m hesitant in doing this right away, since I’m not sure I would qualify for a Page; Facebook states that they do not usually check the Pages that are created (unless they infringe upon copyright or privacy issues).
  • Writing Blog – Along with the new email account, I would create another blog specifically for my writing and thoughts about writing. I will probably post short stories and maybe some excerpts from longer works. However, I have heard from a friend that if I intend on getting published through agencies, I cannot post any of my novels online since that would be considered “self-publishing”.
  • Domain? – I’m still questioning this option. For the longest time (well, ever since I began using the Internet as a tween/young teenager), I had wanted to buy my own domain. Of course, back-in-the-day, I didn’t really have real use for a domain, it just seemed cool. Now that I am actually presented with the opportunity to have my own domain to establish myself online as a writer….well, I am a little scared at the thought. Do I want my real name plastered around the Internet? I suppose I could go for a pen name, but I don’t really fancy that idea right now (plus, I was mildly traumatized in the past with having pen names and having family members embarrass me with how ridiculous the names were). Anyway, I am also a little stuck on which domain registration service to go with–GoDaddy or Dreamhost? Any other suggestions?
  • Twitter – I’m already on Twitter obviously, but I suppose it would be helpful to have a separate Twitter for my writing updates…right?

These are all tentative plans of course; even though I want to get started on everything right away, I also want to make sure I am making the right decisions as to where I would launch my presence.

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In other news, I have begun looking over Novel 1 and outlining the chapters. I notice that many of the scenes so far have moved too fast, and some of the chapters have been too short. However, I still feel amazed that I was able to write this whole novel last November; at that point in time, I hadn’t written anything creative in quite awhile. It had been so long since I actually wrote anything that even my closest friends were surprised to hear that I was writing a novel.

Anyway, I still feel surprised and impressed at the prose that I did manage to write during that point in my life; if I compare the two works I completed this year with Novel 1, I feel like they pale in comparison with that novel. Well, then again, all three novels are still first drafts, so…there’s still plenty of room for improvement. Plus, Novel 2 and 3 were written from guys’ standpoints, which is difficult for me right now since I am a woman.

Well, it just takes practice.

Clicking in; completed novels.

Yes, yes, I know, it has been awhile since I last posted. I had meant to post during the month of November to keep you all updated on my NaNoWriMo progress, but, due to the extreme amount of words I was typing every day, I guess I didn’t think to post blog entries in my spare time.

Well, it is hard to believe, but already the end of the year 2008 is upon us all. I had tried to keep with Blog365 the whole year, and I suppose I should pat myself on the back for keeping up with a post-a-day for more than half of the year (through July). That’s a big accomplishment, so..can’t be sad that I didn’t post so well during the rest of the year.

Besides, a lot of things ended up changing and causing some turmoil from August up until now. Even now, though, changes continue to happen, and I find myself lacking a lot of free time. But, I cannot complain really, since these days life is much more enjoyable than before.

Something exciting to share, by the way: I recently completed the novel that I had begun in January of this year, which means I am up to three completed novels. Granted, these novels are all still first drafts, but I would like to see them all published soon. Since I have completed these projects, the next step is to start the editing/revising phase of Novel 1.

Word has spread that I write novels, so it seems like I already have a small core of a fanbase going. I can’t quite decide how I should go about in establishing an “online presence” for my writer identity; I used to have Myspace and Facebook, but of course, we already know what happened with those accounts. I’m not sure if I should create new accounts at either sites (or at any social networking site for that matter) for my professional identity; I’m wondering if I will become tired of the scene again if I do so. I’ve heard some suggestions thrown about on the NaNoWriMo forums about creating blogs for my protagonists, to keep fans excited/at bay before the initial release of my completed work.

I definitely don’t want everyone to lose interest if too much time passes. So, I would like some feedback from others about what would be the best way to go about doing self-promotion for my books and my general identity as a writer.

Flight from Facebook

At the moment, pretty much anyone knows what the word “Facebook” means. One of the first majorly popular social networking sites, what used to be only a college networking place has turned to a free-for-all, hullabaloo.

It’s what the young, cool (and uncool) people talk about these days. Band kids on the MUNI bus yesterday–

“I’m going to post this on Facebook and you’ll be so embarrassed! You watch!”

“Nuh uh!”

“Yeah!”

What’s the point in having Facebook, one may ask.

For me, when I did have it, I felt it was a good tool for keeping in touch with people that I had met during school and such. My university was one of the first to be “invited” into the Facebook network when it started in 2004, so I signed up for it since it was something new and intriguing. Immediately, I found myself amused at how I could find former high school classmates, and add them to my list to keep in touch somehow. The novelty of how easily we could now keep track of each other (for free, unlike using websites like classmates.com at the time) was simply, yes, a novelty.

I found myself drudging up memories of people from my past, good and bad. Over the years, my list accumulated and I found more and more people from my high school, and also proceeded to add people I had briefly been acquainted with in college. It felt nice to have “so many friends” and be able to keep in touch with them all through Facebook.

Well, then, after awhile, after graduating from college, Facebook began to be something of a nuisance/painful point for me. Keeping tabs on people from my past (and vice versa), I felt like I was constantly being judged for what I was (and was not) doing with my life. Sure, I had only just graduated college, but I found myself feeling envious and upset when I would peruse through others’ pages and see what they were up to in life. I found myself judging them, which made me also feel like, “If I am judging them, who knows how much they’re judging me?”

It’s only the Internet, after all, but I found myself getting too hung over such a thing. I would sit by my computer and sometimes waste several hours clicking around my Facebook list, checking up on people and just becoming too engrossed into people’s lives who I didn’t care about anymore (or so I thought).

It was only in due time that I finally decided I needed to disconnect from the website. It was no longer useful to me in the sense that it was holding me behind in my past and trapping me in fear of being judged for not being “successful enough”. The mini-feed caused for me to feel like my own privacy on the site was no longer something I could enjoy. With every little update, of who’s going out with who or who did this and that–it became too much for me.

So, I left Facebook quietly this past June.

The few friends I did want to keep in touch with understood my reasoning; after all, if they were true friends/people I wanted to keep in touch with, they had other methods of keeping in contact with me, like via email or a phone call. It was unnecessary to have Facebook as another outlet for us to keep in contact anymore anyway.

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In the end, do people dote on Facebook a little too seriously? I was discussing this with one of my co-workers yesterday after he mentioned how he was going back to his hometown soon for his 10-year high school reunion. He said he never had much interest in Facebook in the first place, but one of his roommates wanted him to sign up so they could keep in touch somehow. He, however, has been clever in manipulating his information on there and showing how gullible people have become in terms of information on Facebook:

“I change around little things on my profile every day just to mess with people’s minds. One moment, I’ll say I’m ‘engaged’, then I’ll change it really quickly to ‘married’, then the next day change it immediately to ‘single’ again. It’s amazing how many people pay attention to that stuff and keep dropping me ‘Congratulations!’ messages.”

I’ll just leave it at that, since it speaks for itself.