It’s time to play Never Have I Ever…the author edition! Which means, we talk about both grammar and murder.
The normal author things, you know? 🤗 I’m pretty sure these are the two top most dealt with topics of authors worldwide anyway. And I love these types of tags! It’s interesting to know what kind of “writer stereotypes” we fall into. I usually hit a lot! My biggest author fail is not drinking coffee and rarely writing late at night. I make up for it by knowing far too much about how much blood you can lose. (A LOT. 10/10 DON’T RECOMMEND THOUGH.)
I also got this tag from Chelsea @ An Ordinary Pen’s blog, so go see her answers too!
✓ ugh yes as of last year I have. I used to be so avid about starting what I finished, no matter what. Because you can always fix something in edits. You can’t fix what doesn’t exist!! But then 2019 came and it was just a year that felt like the equivalent of having raw soggy egg noodles tipped into your eyes. 🤗 I started two books and couldn’t finish them. (I want to go back someday though!)
✗ this is a solid no. I can’t even write things on the shopping list without having a catastrophe. I wrote “potato flower” the other day and am ashamed.
✓ only on accident! Like a phrase here or there. Recently I’ve switched to writing in past tense (I MISS PRESENT TENSE THOUGH) and it took me a while to get back into it.
✓ um this is just my everyday 😂 I don’t do a lot of detailed research before doing a first draft, because otherwise I get bogged down on details I won’t even need. I do precursory research though. Recently I was googling eyes changing colour naturally (it happens!!) and the kind of birds most often kept as pets (google actually genuinely suggested a raw chicken and I just…have so many questions about this honestly).
✓ OH YES. Remember how I mentioned 2019 was cursed with unfinished drafts? I couldn’t name anyone!! I kept changing their names from chapter to chapter! It was a disaster on two legs! (Also fun fact: I can plot a whole book out and still not have the character names sorted. Names are HARD.)
written a story in a month or less
✓ back in my youth, I could write 30K a day ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ 60K in 2 days. And even my “slow drafting” is still under a month. So least to say SOLID YES. (Although I am sad, but I can’t do that kind of intense focus anymore.)
✗ but I’m falling asleep writing this blog post tbh…not because it’s boring!! I am so tired. sO SO TIRED. I last slept in 1994 and this fact is catching up to me.
✓ yes but only my family’s. I wouldn’t correct a stranger’s grammar! Half because, like, general politeness and people get tired and make mistakes. But also because sometimes English isn’t everyone’s first language?! Also WHO ACTUALLY CARES. If someone comments/messages me and the first thing they do is “correct” me, then there is zero chance of me feeling like connecting with them. 😒
✗ no but I do that while writing outlines! during an actual novel, I’ve never left notes or anything. Just tear stains. 😌
✓ in fact I use this as an excuse when I am NOT writing too. It’s just a blanket excuse. Someone looks at me and I say, “Can’t. I’m writing.” Then I continue eating my snack and staring dead-eyed at a wall. Which is essentially writing anyway, so it’s fine.
killed a character that was based on someone I know in real life
✗ NO. I never never base characters on people I know! Maybe people I’ve seen (August’s style in A Thousand Perfect Notes is based off someone I saw at a library once) and of course I get influenced by habits and quirks of people in real life. But I don’t write real people into my books. 😫 It’s awkward enough to KNOW real humans, let alone write about them.
used pop culture references in a story
✓ Absolutely! I actually get confused when people actively try not to let their story be “dated”. It will be dated. It just will. Just mentioning instagram will date your story in 10 years. Also I kind of like picking up a novel written in the early 2000s and enjoying the older references. Your book is a product of YOUR TIME no matter what you do.
written between the hours of 1am and 6am
✗ I think I have to forfeit my writer-loyalty-card. 👀 I feel like most authors have followed a golden burst of inspiration into the wee hours of a morning? But I always go to bed at a normal time. (Do I sleep? No. I have insomnia. But at least my whingeing is muffled by pillows.)
drank an entire pot of coffee while writing
✗ I haven’t even drunk coffee while writing. At all. 😂 I am AWFUL at this author stereotype.
written down dreams to use in potential novels
✓ Sort of?? I’ve not written them down, but I’ve been inspired by dreams before and let it work into stories!
published an unedited story on the internet/blog/wattpad
✗ Death first, thank you.
forgotten to save my work/draft
✗ I’m pretty strict about this! And about backing everything up. Also GO BACK UP YOUR WORK RIGHT NOW.
typed so long that my wrists hurt
✓ YES and I don’t think it’s worth it, kids. 😫 Take care of YOUR BONES AND LIGAMENTS. Wow, I sound so so old these days. This is what happens when you turn 106.
spilled a drink on my laptop while writing
✗ NEVER. But I used to break my keyboard like 4 x a year from typing so much.
finished a novel
✓ I have finished exactly 35 novels in the last 10 years. 😌 Some of them are even good.
laughed like an evil villain while writing a scene
✗ the only time my face moves while I’m writing is when I’m accidentally trying out my character’s expression. Which probably makes me look like I ate a bowl of hysterical bees.
cried while writing a scene
✗ I’ve teared up but not technically shed the tears! I am notorious for not crying. But TWICE I have teared up: once for a sequel to a book I wish you could read. And once for the 6th book in this incredibly epic and windy fantasy series my teenage-self wrote, where I got to book 6 and was just like “How can I raise the stakes…oh! gonna kill absolutely freaking everyone.” I mean, okay, sure, 16-year-old-me. Where you working through some stuff.
✓ YES! I’ve gotten so into this! I downloaded programs and everything. And always quit because they looked tacky and I’m a perfectionist. 😂
researched something shady for a novel
✓ oh, isn’t this all of us?! I have done a lot: types of murder, how much blood can someone lose, scars, can you survive [insert near death experience here], poisonous plants, how long you can be unconscious for, stab wounds healing rates, survival chances of being walloped in the head. It’s like 😌 do I hate my characters here or something. Or do I just need readers’ tears to fill my morning coffee pot.
Feel free to take the questions for your own blog!! And tell me…
have you researched something shady for writing?! and do you struggle to pick character names?? 👀