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Meeting Orson Scott Card

Hey everyone!  I know it’s been a loooong time… I’m just busy making music.

Anyway, on October 18, 2013, Orson Scott Card visited my school for a book signing soon after the movie release of “Ender’s Game”.  He’s actually an adjunct professor here and even teaches a summer writing course.   (Too bad I’m never here over the summer!)

I met him and he signed my (as yet unread – it’s still on my list!) copy of “Ender’s Game”.  I had about 30 seconds to ask him a few questions.  I wish I had written our conversation down earlier, as it’s not quite word-for-word in my memory anymore.  But I think he made some really good comments so I thought I’d share. Keep in mind this is me paraphrasing while trying to remain as accurate as possible.

Me: What’s your favorite story out of ones you’ve written?
Card: Ender has been very good to me. (I sensed that perhaps another book is secrely his favorite, but due to all the monetary gain and publicity he’s gotten from “Ender’s Game” I can understand why he might be reluctant to say it’s something else.)

Me: What’s the best part of being a writer?
Card: Getting a check when I’m finished! (laughs)

Me: What advice do you have for amateur writers, even people like me who might not ever get their work published?
Card: Always try to make your writing the best it can be.  Even if you only write for yourself, someday, someone else will read your work and you want it to be a good representation of you and your voice as a writer.  If you write for yourself only, you should still be able to take pride in the material you produce.  

Me: Do you have any other writing tips?
Card: Always remember: people make any one decision for more than one reason.  And every decision has several consequences. 

There have been some very unkind things about him in the news, but for the little while I was with him, he and his wife were very nice, engaging to speak with, and seemed very genuine. Even though is now quite famous, he struck me as very down-to-earth and fun.

Me (with the big white bow) waiting with my friends Kira and Geri.
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My Guest Post on Julia’s Blog

Hey everybody!  I didn’t mean to go so long without posting.  I woke up today and realized I hadn’t written anything on my blog in over a week!  I’ve been studying and practicing hard lately.  Anyway, my guest post on my friend Julia’s blog is now live! 

You can click HERE to read it.

Please give your opinions and comments on it.  I’d love to hear what you all think!  

My (belated) Monday Musings report on my “novel in nine weeks” project: 

 I am going to finish my story Ransomed which I started almost three years ago.  I said I was starting this project two weeks ago, but I had already written about 7,000 words before I started this project.  As I was re-reading what I already had down, I was noticing some pretty bad continuity issues regarding characters, my attempts at writing pirate dialogue were awful, and I had slightly changed where I wanted the story to go in my mind, so I needed to adjust the beginning of the story accordingly.  

I decided that this Monday (2 days ago) is the new Week 1, Day 1.  So today is Week 1, Day 3.  This puts my last day of this nine week project at August 24 – just barely before I go back to college in Virginia!  I guess the 13-hour drive back will give me plenty of time to edit!

You can read along with my progress on Figment HERE.  I will be uploading on a chapter-by-chapter basis, so I can’t really schedule when more of the story will be available to read.  If you’d like updates whenever I upload more, you can create a FREE account on Figment and “follow” me.

Remember to smile! 🙂 

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Monday Musings: I’m a Guest Poster!

Hello everybody!

I am writing a guest post for my friend Julia the Writer Girl!  If you haven’t heard of her before, please go check out her blog!  She has been much more consistent with writing over the years than I have been.  She has written lots of material and is also in the process of trying to get published.  She is a really sweet girl and gives excellent perspective and advice about writing and the publishing process.  

I am very excited for this opportunity.  I have known her via the internet for a long time.  Even though we have never met in person, she encourages and inspires me to keep writing.  She is also a college student like me, so she understands the challenge of balancing schoolwork and creative projects.  I will let you all know when my post on her blog goes live.

Sadly, I don’t have any new material to post for my very first Monday Musings.  I was really busy this weekend saying my goodbyes to a bunch of my friends who will be away serving missions for my church for the next two years.  It is kind of a bittersweet experience.  I am very excited that they will be sharing the message of Christ with people in faraway places, but at the same time, I will really miss them!

This week is also my first of nine weeks following Bill Dodd’s plan to write 25,000 words in nine weeks!  I am very excited to start!

Remember to smile! 🙂

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We Wish You a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

…Five days late…sorry about that.  I’ve been really busy lately.  Anyways, how was your Christmas?  I had a great Christmas!  I played my harp in the church Christmas program and pigged out at a family dinner.  I got a TON of new books which I am really excited to crack open as soon as I finish the last book of the series I’m reading now (Belgariad – it’s awesome, read it!)  Some of the titles I got are:

  • The In the Hall of the Dragon King trilogy
  • Merlin’s Harp, which I am SUPER excited to read because nobody writes about harpists.  For those of you who don’t already know, I am a harpist who is obsessed with anything harp-related.
  • Inheritance. I’ve only been waiting for this book for FOUR STINKING YEARS!  And I couldn’t send Christopher Paolini hate mail for taking so long because he doesn’t give out a way to contact him.  Le sigh.
  • Troubleshooting Your Lever Harp.  Essentially a manual on all the things that can go wrong with your harp, if you can fix them, and what needs professional help.  Every lever harpist I’ve talked to recommends it.
  • The Mallorean series.  It’s set in the same world as Belgariad and is somewhat of a continuation of the story but I assume there are many new characters.  I haven’t read it yet so I will have to wait and see… But I love Belgariad so I am thrilled to have more books in the same awesome world.
  • My best friend gave me a graphic novel adaptation of the first Maximum Ride novel.  The art is gorgeous.  (I guess it’s time to confess that I’m a die-hard manga/anime fan.  Any other otaku out there?)
I also got a few new sweaters.  Yay!  I love sweaters.  Wearing sweaters is is pretty much the only good thing about winter.  Thankfully, my mom is really good at picking out ones that are super cute but also soft and fluffy.  So, not an itchy sweater in sight!  

My awesome grandparents got me a Kindle!  It’s very cool and small so I carry it everywhere.  I don’t go anywhere without a book, so it’s very handy.  I’ve already downloaded over 30 free books onto it, including most of the John Carter of Mars series (a movie adaptation if the first book is coming out later this year, I think!) and I’ve read lots of good reviews on the series so I’ll be reading it as soon as I finish all my other books.  Mostly I have just been browsing cheesy, free YA romances and re-reading my Jane Austen favorites on the Kindle when I don’t have Belgariad close by.

Did you kiss anyone at midnight on New Years?  I didn’t know it was “tradition”, or what have you, to kiss someone on midnight on New Years until two days ago.  Oops.  I don’t really mind because
1) I don’t have a boyfriend – I barely manage to get all my homework done as it is!
2) I was sleeping over at my best friend’s house and we were busy playing with her cockatiel, watching movies with hot guys (Prince of Persia and Beastly) and stuffing our faces with Bugles, Chex mix, fizzy drinks, and leftover candy canes. Good times.

What did you all get for Christmas?  Did you have a good New Year?  What is your favorite thing about the winter holidays?

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Hello!

Hello, 
This is my new blog.  Some of you may have already seen my harp blog (www.harpjourney.blogspot.com) and you’re probably thinking, “You barely update that blog, and now you’re starting a new one?!”
Yes, I am.  Why?  Because I can!

I write a lot, and I want to connect with other writers and talk about writing.  
If you ever dreamed of writing a book, or a script, I encourage you to take the bull by the horns and go for it.  The worst that can happen is that you’ll find out it’s not your cup of tea.  The best that can happen is that you’ll love it, become addicted to writing, become a hermit so you can write all the time – and maybe you’ll write a best-seller!

So with that, I bid you adieu.  
~Shelby

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