Prep-Tember // Podcasts for Writers

Oh hey there

 

 

 

I think I have mentioned before that I have been on a bit of a podcast rampage lately. Now that I’m working from home, I’m here a lot more, and as much as I talk to my cats, they never really respond so while my partner is at work, background noise is definitely needed. Sometimes it’s old episodes of The OC, sometimes its Spotify, but most of the time it’s a podcast. Though not all of my podcasts are great for writing too, some of my favourite ones are gaming or RPG podcasts, a lot of the ones I subscribe to are specifically for writers. So in this post I’ll be talking about my favourite podcasts to listen to while I’m writing, or if I need to get inspired to write.

Writing Excuses: 
“a fast-paced, educational podcast for writers, by writers. It airs weekly, with new episodes appearing each Sunday evening at around 6pm Eastern Time. Episodes vary in length from fifteen to twenty-five minutes, but are usually less than twenty minutes long. The tagline, “Fifteen minutes long, because you’re in a hurry, and we’re not that smart” isn’t super accurate, time-wise, but it’s a haiku so we’re keeping it.”

Welcome to Nightvale:
Now this isn’t a writer’s podcast but it’s a super interesting concept and I find the episodes really inspiring.

“WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE is a twice-monthly podcast in the style of community updates for the small desert town of Night Vale, featuring local weather, news, announcements from the Sheriff’s Secret Police, mysterious lights in the night sky, dark hooded figures with unknowable powers, and cultural events. Turn on your radio and hide.”

The Smarter Artist:
” Author entrepreneurs Sean Platt, David Wright, and Johnny B. Truant answer questions, offer quick tips, and deliver keen insight to help creative people who want to make a good living off of their hard work. In just a few minutes a day, we promise to help you get smarter faster.”

The Self-Publishing Podcast:
” Want to publish and sell more books? Want to get your writing into the world without contending with agents, publishers, or the other gatekeepers in traditional publishing? There’s never been a better time to make money as a writer — to take your books directly to readers and be in charge of your own business rather than jumping through hoops to please the Powers that Be. Full time authors Johnny B. Truant, David Wright, and Sean Platt (owners of the 2M+ words-per-year indie publishing company Sterling & Stone) explore everything related to getting your writing published… and making money doing it… in today’s new DIY digital publishing frontier. This isn’t artsy talk — it’s “authorpreneurial” business strategy that turns self-publishing from sideline into a rewarding career.”

Authorpreneur’s Almanac:
” Authors and innovators Sean Platt & Johnny B. Truant reveal the inner workings of indie publishing company Sterling & Stone, in a real time look at what works, what doesn’t, and what they learn along the way.”

Writership:
“We help fiction writers master self-editing skills, and we offer editing services to turn good stories into great ones that are well told and polished.
Our adventures are fueled by a passion to make authors proud of their writing and the legacy they’re building.”

Grammar Girl:
“Your friendly guide to the world of grammar, punctuation, usage, and fun developments in the English language.”

Sell More Books Show:
“The Sell More Books Show is a weekly podcast focusing on helping new and experienced authors stay up-to-date with the latest self-publishing and indie news, tools and book selling/marketing strategies.”

The Worried Writer:
” Most writers I know create their work despite being worried, anxious or distracted. You are amongst friends!

The podcast is stuffed with advice to help you overcome self doubt, fear and procrastination. We all struggle with these things, but there are tools and techniques that can transform your writing life.”

Magic Lessons with Elizabeth Gilbert:
” Bestselling author Elizabeth Gilbert returns for the second season of her hit podcast MAGIC LESSONS, ready to help another batch of aspiring artists overcome their fears and create more joyfully. This year’s guest experts include Neil Gaiman, Gary Shteyngart, Amy Purdy, Michael Ian Black, Brandon Stanton, Martha Beck, and Glennon Doyle Melton.”

Hopefully, this post helps you find a few podcasts that will help you get inspired. Are there any awesome podcasts that I didn’t list here that I should check out! Leave your favourites in the comments below.

mazie bones

Prep-Tember// Why I Use Scrivener

Oh hey there

 

Today I want to talk about the application/word processor that has changed my writing career: Scrivener. I have been using Scrivener for over 4 years now and I am a huge advocate. In all of my writing ventures, be it creative or freelance, this is the processor of choice. If I mention my writer’s notebook, I’m usually referring to my ongoing creative binder in Scrivener, which is kind of top secret but maybe someday I’ll clean it up and do a post on it!

So here are some of my favourite features and some of the main reasons I use it so religiously.

Name Generate:
I love this feature so much! I didn’t mention it in the Character Names post I made yesterday because I wanted to save it for this one, but the Name Generator is definitely an awesome tool that helps broaden the horizon beyond all the way you can find names that I shared yesterday.

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Screen Shot 2017-09-27 at 11.40.38 AMThe Organization Tools:
I adore the fact that you can go to bulletin board mode and see all of your cue cards laid out. If any of you have followed me over from my old blog, you will know that I was an avid user of the cue card method of brainstorming and organizing, and having this feature helps me save a lot of paper. I also love the folder systems, and that there is an option to change icons on folders and files for better organization.

 

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Statistics:
When it comes to writing for work or during NaNoWriMo, I am very goal driven. I have a bit of an obsession with constantly tracking my progress and setting new goals, and that is just how I get some of my best work done. Having these statistic tools and daily targets is a huge reason that I love this program so much. It’s like every day can be a NaNoWriMo day.

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Editing Tools:
All of the tools in this drop bar have proven to be so helpful to me when it comes to writing. in the Writing Tools tab, it lets you check online dictionaries and thesauruses, which I frequently find myself searching for. There are also dictation tools, which are super useful, and special characters in case you find yourself creating a new secret language.

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All in all, I think that the program speaks for itself. I personally can’t live without it and think it is seriously life changing for writers of all sorts so it’s definitely worth trying the free trial to see if it works for you. There are so many other features to explore that I haven’t shared in this article, that you might find life-changing. Check out this link (not sponsored) to get your free trial today!

What word processor do you use and why? Is it your ride or die or are you looking for something new? How do you organize with it? Thanks for reading!

mazie bones

Prep-Tember // Character Names

Oh hey there

 
Character names can be one of the most daunting parts of writing novels, at least in my opinion. Committing to a character name is kind of like naming a child or a pet. It’s a name that you are going to have to hear and write and say a whole lot so it really has to work, and it has to fit the character. So in this post, I’m going to be talking about some of the ways that I find names for my characters!

Surnames:
I find its always easy to start with a surname so that I can make sure that the first names sound better with it. Though surnames aren’t the most used name, it’s still important to have that name picked to add depth to your characters and to allow possible growth with family trees and what not. The first step I take to find a surname is I grab a phone book and start flipping through the pages. Whenever a last name pops out at me I flag the page or add it to my ongoing collection of names in my writer’s notebook.

Read Everything:
Remember that every name is a possibility, and therefore, everything you read that contains names, holds possibilities for character names. Read the newspaper, read old books or comics, read an atlas, or an encyclopedia or maybe even branch out and look for unlikely names. For example, if you’re writing a fantasy book, look up old names, or take a basic name and spell it differently. For example, Mazie could be spelt Maezy.

RPG Character Creation Generators:
I have a background in Dungeons and Dragons and other tabletop RPGs and I love using those generators to create character names, especially for short stories or fantasy pieces.

The most important thing to remember is that you need to make sure the name fits your story and your character. If it doesn’t fit you’ll start to notice sooner while you’re writing that the name is just not working. I personally start to realize it when I get to the second chapter and I start cringing or rolling my eyes every time I have to write it down.

I hope that this post kind of gives you a bit of insight or at least a couple ideas on how you can find the right names for your characters! If this post helped you at all please put some of your favourite names in the comments below! I’d love to hear some of your best character names, or even what genre you enjoy writing the most!

mazie bones


 

September: Small Goals

Oh hey there

In my last post, I kind of spoke about some of the things that I plan on doing in September but I felt that it might be a bit more beneficial if I post my goals publically, for all that accountability and what not! So Here are the goals I had written down for August and my progress with them!

(Disclaimer: This post will contain affiliate links, which means that I may earn a few cents if you click on a link or make a purchase through a link posted here, with no additional cost to you! I appreciate the support!)

August Goals:

Finish Unpacking:  In July, my partner moved into my apartment, and since then there has been a constant stream of plans, events or just road blocks keeping us from unpacking all of his stuff. So I set a goal to find time to finish getting him all settled in! There is at least one more Ikea trip to go before we’re completely organized but at least everything is out of boxes!

Cozy bones Instagram:  I made a goal to post more on Instagram, and a goal to get to 200 followers! I got to 215! A fair jump from 80 followers in July! My next goal is 35o, but I’m not making that a monthly goal.

Label my part of the office: I got a bunch of craft cubes for our shared office, the ones you can see in my workspace tour. Up until that tour, they were labeled with sticky notes, so I needed to upgrade it a bit! It’s been on my task list for at least 3 months.

Complete the zine: I’ve had my zine planned for about a month now, and I finally sat down and wrote it out! I’m excited to share more about it in the next couple of weeks!

Start Couponing again: Now this is kind of a half and half win for me. I didn’t start hardcore couponing again, like the whole clipping and price matching dealy that I used to back in the day. But I did log back into my PC Plus account, but more importantly, I signed back into my Checkout 51 for the first time in a couple of years! I completely forgot how fun it was to use this app! I’ve already got $15 on the app, and a little bit more processing after my grocery shop from today! I’m a bit too excited about it, to be honest, I keep asking Drew if we can go grocery shopping again. If you haven’t checked out the app yet, you definitely should! It truly is remarkable the savings you can find!

Checkout 51 Home

No Spend: At the beginning of the month I wrote down a list of things that I wasn’t going to allow myself to buy. The list consisted of books, makeup, bullet journal supplies, yarn, and purses. I’m proud to say I spent money on none of these things last month!

September Goals:

Portfolio: I need to set up my portfolio page, it’s currently just sad and empty and it’s something that is super important for my career. Time to put the big girl panties on and just get to work on that.

Prep-tember: I want to write at least one or two Prep-tember posts each week. I also need to get set up for Prep-tober. Let me know if there are any posts you’d like to see from me.

Outline my NaNo Novel: Now that I have an idea for a novel, I need to sit down and write a detailed outline for it, other wise it will never get written. I’ve tried the unplanned route, it just doesn’t work for me.

Print My Zine: Now that my zine is written, I need to lay it out, and print it. That’s really the last step before it gets out into the world. I’m pretty excited about making a couple extra dollars from something written and made by me.

Blog Every Week Day: Writing every week day is a definite goal for this month! I really want to see if I can do it! I know there are a lot of awesome bloggers that write every day so week days are super doable I think!

No Spend: This month I’m cutting back on my rules a little bit! This month it’s just no books, not purses and no stationery. I’m sorry, but all the fall colours just came out in the yarn department and I have n0 will power! I’d just be setting myself up to fail!

That’s it for today’s post! Share your goals, I’d love to hear what you have planned for this month!

As always, thanks for reading,
mazie bones

This post was proofread by Grammarly

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