Beautiful Books 2: Writing Heartseeker (& snippets)

I keep meaning to tell about the story I’m writing this NaNo, and not managing it. And what better way than to answer some questions! So I’m linking up for the second round of Beautiful Books hosted by Sky and Cait.

(I know, I know, I didn’t do the first one since that was last month and I was too busy. But I might cheat and steal those questions to answer later if I find the time…)

And there will be snippets. Ish. Marked in blue. Because I feel like it.

And today happens to be the one-year anniversary of the day I first had the idea for this novel!!! So that works out. ^____^

But first, here is the cover, title, and blurb for my NaNo novel so that you will know what on earth (or in this case, elsewhere) I’m talking about!

CoverHeartseeker

Heartseeker
by
Deborah O’Carroll

Princess Evanna is betrothed to a prince who cannot love her, for his heart was stolen. So she sets out to find his heart and return it to him. A knight with many secrets grudgingly travels with her for reasons of his own; and what of the mysterious bard who seems, impossibly, to be following them? Evanna and her knight journey through a land filled with perils–of danger and beauty–and both must find their own hearts along the way. But at the end of the road, the failure of the princess’s quest may lurk in the shadows. For how can she find the heart of a man who may be heartless after all?

The Questions for Round #2: How’s The Writing Going?

1. Be honest: how is your writing going?

That’s questionable. I don’t know how to answer honestly… In a way it’s hard, and I’m kind of struggling, because I don’t have it plotted and I don’t work well when I’m pantsing. I feel like there’s too much description and not enough dialog, there’s basically no humor which is startling because the last two things I wrote were almost totally humor-based. So that just feels… weird. I mean, a story that isn’t constantly making fun of everything but is actually kind of serious and beautiful and epic?? WHAT IS THIS MADNESS. Ahem. But on the other hand, I’m having a good time returning to a medieval fantasy world after so long writing modern fantasy these days; it feels like I’m going home. And considering it isn’t plotted, it’s kind of amazing how it’s all coming together and actually getting written. So there are ups and downs.

2. What’s your first sentence/paragraph?

(Not counting the prologue because it started out kind of boring…)

Princess Evanna had come a long way to Cloud Peak Castle to meet her betrothed, and was having the hardest time in doing so.

3. Do you have a book cover, and/or pictures that reflect your book?

Since the cover is up there already… Have some pictures from pinterest:

knight1

riding2 boatbeach

standinthesky

unicornfight

treeatsea hands

And I have a whole pinterest board for it HERE.

4. Do you have pictures of each of your characters? If not, describe them for us! (Be as descriptive as you can.)

Princess Evanna

Princess Evanna (picture from pinterest)

(Except she doesn’t really have a star on her forehead, as far as I’m aware. But you know. What can ya do.)

And then Sir Durand himself, my dark mysterious knight with blond hair.

Sir Durand

Sir Durand (picture from pinterest)

Aaand I don’t have pics for the others. So describing it is.

Reldin the Bard – excerpts to describe him:

…a slight sheen of stubble along his jaw, and loose fair hair that curled around his ears, a light brown touched with gold… his ageless tanned face and golden eyes that seemed to see through everything.

He stood with his gold harp held in the crook of his arm, wearing a long fine looking blue-green tunic with long wide sleeves and gold embroidery twining intricately about the edges, and a white sash and cloak.

At times he looked very young, in his mid twenties perhaps, and at others as if he might be thirty-something or older. He might have been her brother’s age, or her father’s, or anywhere in between. And when he sang his songs or told his tales, sometimes he seemed as wise and as old as the mountains themselves, as if he had been around forever and seen everything the world held including its many secrets.

And then there’s also the squire Trillum.

A strange lad of sixteen summers with unusual white hair and ice blue eyes.

I like him. A lot.

Trillum and Reldin want me to write a sequel about them.

……

Ahem.

Yes, that’s a thing that happened. And I’ve only barely started the first.

But I’ve told them I miiiiight, which is the only reason they’re not running away with the entire book. (What are you talking about? Bribing characters with promises of sequels is totally a thing. Honest. *cough*) This story is about Evanna’s love-story and quest, not them, and I want them to remember that. I can always write a sequel about Trillum if he will behave. *eyes him sternly* *he is unimpressed*

5. What scene are you most excited to write?

The big climactic one near the end! So many ouchnesses happening for everyone on every level. Mwahahahahaaaaaaaa. *laughs evil author laugh*

6. Share a snippet or a scene that you really enjoyed writing.

“You will not pass,” the knight replied.

Princess Evanna sighed. It was going to be one of those days.

“I am going to disagree with you,” Sir Dagget said.

“Disagree as you wish, but you will not pass,” the strange knight replied.

“And just why exactly do you wish to stop us?” Sir Dagget inquired.

The other knight said nothing, but remained unmoving on the path just before the bridge.

“It is ill mannered to block the way and not even tell why,” Sir Dagget observed.

“It is ill-mannered to block the way, regardless of telling or not,” Sir Kern muttered, but remained on his horse by Princess Evanna.

7. Now that you’re writing, have any of the plot details, or the process itself, turned out different from what you planned or imagined?

Actually a lot of it, since I hadn’t concretely plotted it before. I can’t think of anything particular though.

8. Is there a character or aspect of your plot that’s difficult to write?

I’m having a hard time with my main character, Princess Evanna. She hasn’t clicked for me. I always have a problem with my MC, and also with girls, so when they’re both I’m doomed. >.<

9. What’s your favorite aspect of this novel so far? Favorite character?

Being in an awesome fantasy world again, with a new fresh book, and just enjoying it! And don’t make me pick. Reldin, Trillum, and Durand are all fighting for top place and it’s anyone’s game right now…

10. Have you drawn off of any life experiences or people you know to create your novel and your characters?

Um. Not really.

11. Do you have a playlist or certain song for your novel and/or characters?

*cracks knuckles* Ohhhh yes. >:D

There’s a beautiful song called “I Follow You” by Ashley Davis, which you can hear a clip of here. It sort of inspires the whole “feel” of the novel. And I sort of love it to death. (I had heard it on a Celtic music show on the radio, and had to buy it because it was perfect. ❤ )

Then I also figured out that “Everything Goes Black” by Skillet is sort of perfect for the love-story. I realized that not long before starting writing, and it totally helped. (The only problem is that whenever it starts playing I stop writing to listen to it so I can think about how the words apply. Oops.)

And I listen to lots of Celtic music when I need to be inspired, and lots of very fast loud Skillet songs when I need to type fast or wordwar. (I know, you wouldn’t think Skillet would fit very well for a fairytale-type fantasy novel. But wordwarring to Skillet is a habit I developed last NaNo and haven’t been able to break…)

12. Let’s have some fun for a moment: imagine you are somehow transported into your book’s world. Which character are you most likely to be found hanging out with?

I think I would hang out with Reldin the Bard. He would be fascinating to talk with. But I might end up automatically hanging out with Evanna… And of course, I’d love to hang out with Durand and Trillum!! 😀

13. How do you keep yourself motivated to finish your daily wordcount? (Pinterest? Internet breaks? Chocolate?)

I… don’t…? *cough* Okay, so mostly I’m trying not to fall behind because I might not be able to write as much (or at all…) for a couple weeks here soon, so I really want to win NaNo but I’m not sure if I can. So making sure that the little bar on my NaNo stats graph isn’t below par each day is kind of my motivation. Otherwise, I’m really not very motivated this year by anything. -_- It’s kind of a problem.

14. What your favourite writing quote or piece of writing advice?

I feel like I have so many favorites. So naturally I can’t think of anything right now. How about this one.

WSomersetMaugham

(I like to quote that one because I tire of all the writing advice and want to just write how I want to write without the chains tying me down and telling me I should write a certain way…)

15. How does this book make you feel so far? Are you laughing? Crying? Frustrated?

Alternately excited and reallllly frustrated. What can I say. It’s NaNo and I wasn’t ready. But some of it is… kind of… beautiful? And I keep surprising myself, so maybe that’s good. I mean, I had never written a death scene before (not REALLY) and here I kind of did one and a half. Which was weird. So you know. Things are happening.

***

And I’d better go back to writing if I want to defeat that stats graph today, so that’s all for now. I hope it wasn’t totally boring, anyway…

How’s your NaNo (or other project) going?? Best of luck to you! Keep going!

*charges off to do battle with Ye Most Feared Stats Monster of Evil*