Authorly Bucket List

To wrap up my week of tag catching up…

Tag Catch-Up Post #7 (or #8, depending on counting…) – THIS IS THE VERY LAST ONE I PROMISE.

So, a few months back, I was tagged by Sarah @ Light and Shadows for a new tag, created by Erin Kenobithe Authorly Bucket List Tag! (It is also, apparently, known as the the Stuff-I-Need-To-Practice-More-Slash-Stuff-I’d-Like-To-Be-Better-At Tag. But Authorly Bucket List is easier to say, doncha know…) Go check out their blogs, do! You won’t regret it. 😀

Okay, so the the idea with the Authorly Bucket List Tag (Original Post) is to list three to seven things you’re not very good at, and another three to seven you’d like to try.

Shivers, y’all. This looks awesome.

Let’s get this show on the road! (And I may have to steal a couple of your things, Sarah, since I have some similar problems… >.>)

Things I Need to Work On

Actually Writing
Um. Yes. This is my biggest problem. I don’t often actually sit down to write. I procrastinate about it like you wouldn’t believe, I spend a lot of time plotting and thinking and doing little nothings, and basically everything except actually writing. But whenever I try to solve this with goals, or with events like NaNo, it works okay for a bit but then I get major burnout. If I specifically try to write several days in a row, for instance, I get burnt out and sometimes take a couple more weeks to recharge. I tend to write in large bursts (large here having the smallish meaning of like 2k words) with sometimes a couple weeks between. Yeah, it’s bad. But if I’m inspired, I can pound out a whole bunch. So it just depends. I guess I need to get myself inspired and keep it that way, and develop a bit of discipline.

Ah, villains. They’re what makes the world go ’round — or at least the plot. Usually. I never figure my villains out enough. They like to be kind of flat. And my main problem is that I never know their motives well enough or figure out what their plans are/their timelines. They kind of conveniently do stuff whenever the plot requires it, and… Yeah, enough about villains, let’s move on. I think my villains just don’t interest me much because I don’t LIKE them. I don’t want to spend all this time with them and figuring out their “deal”. I don’t understand people who are fascinated with villains and antagonists. O_O I mean, if they’re lovable/redeemable, sure… But yeah. The bad badguys I just want to stay away from, which does not help my writing since they’re kind of necessary! I guess I need some help in the villain department.

Battles / Fighting
I kind of majorly fail at fighting scenes. I don’t understand the concepts of swordfighting etc., no matter how much I read/watch about it. Much as I would like to! If there is fighting, I will be generally vague about it and move on because… what even are you supposed to do with that? It’s even worse with full-fledged battles. I haven’t attempted to write a battle in years, and I know even then I was horrible at it. How do you do it? You’ve got to focus on mini fighting scenes with individual characters throughout (see above…) and also keep track of all the sides and flanks and attacks and retreats and who’s fighting who and I just get so confused. How do you juggle all of that and make it remotely make sense?? This is probably partially why I’m terrified of returning to writing Epic Fantasy after being so long distracted in the shallower territory of contemporaries… Speaking of which…

So, ever since my first Kedran’s Wood story (The Owl of Kedran’s Wood) kidnapped me and held me captive to work on the adventures of Tare and the Chess Club for the last few years, I haven’t done much in the way of working on anything Epic Fantasy ish, my first love. I sort of popped back to work on my Starrellia series a couple times, and of course wrote most of Heartseeker for NaNo, but the truth is I’ve been away from Epic Fantasy for a very long time and want to get back to it. Which brings me to my thing-I-need-to-work-on: FANTASY. My fantasy is not as imaginative and full of fantastical things as I would like. It just doesn’t often occur to me that I can do whatever I want, and instead I just blunder along with whatever’s right there at the forefront of my brain. What about dragons, fairies, enchantments, intriguing magicalness, totally unique new things…? All the possibilities! My fantasy seems to normally be fairly tame, and I think some exploring of possibilities would not go amiss.

Things I’d Like to Try

Fairy Tale Retellings
Yessss. I actually hope to accomplish this soon, since I’m (currently) planning on writing a Twelve Dancing Princesses story for NaNo this year… We’ll see how that turns out. But fairy tales are awesome, and I adore retellings and they are so fun to read. So naturally I’d like to try my hand at a few! I even recently put together an idea for an epic fairy tale mashup conglomeration, so that might happen someday. I’ve never done a retelling, so it would be interesting to see how to make it similar to the original tales but also fresh and new and… yeah, it sounds like quite a challenge, and one I’m very excited to try at some point.

Mind Reading / Telepathy
There’s something really fabulous about mind-things, somehow. Mind communication. Yummy. I’ve always found it interesting to read about, and seeing the different ways different authors do it… I’d like to try it myself someday because it would just be awesome. Now I just need to find a way to do it… But there are so many possibilities! Maybe it’s been done to death, but I don’t really care. I just want to try because it sounds so fun!

Time Travel
Like mind-reading, there is something awesome about time-travel. Or, specifically, Timeslip, which is the version that’s my favorite and tends to involve someone ending up in an older time period with some sort of magicalness involved, I think… As opposed to the sci-fi-ness of a time machine. It’s also much less predictable, more uncertain, which I like. But I’d also like to try a time machine story as well, which I have an idea for, including dealing with the question of how can people go back in time without changing the future/their present… Yeah, it kind of makes the head spin. Which is part of the fun. I don’t have a specific timeslip idea but I really would love to try it someday if an opportunity presented itself. The main problem with time travel stuff is I’d have to do all the research just as if it was a historical fiction book, the thought of which terrifies me. So… we’re shelving those ideas for awhile. 😉 (Unless of course, it’s time-travel in another world…! Which would solve the research problem. I’ve only seen this done in Diana Wynne Jones’s book The Crown of Dalemark and I ADORED it so so much!! So it can be done.)

Cons and Heisty-ness
I’ve recently become obsessed with reading and watching crimey-heisty things, as I call them. TV shows Hustle and Leverage, the Heist Society books by Ally Carter, White Cat and its sequels by Holly Black (despite their ickness). Even milder versions like National Treasure‘s subplot to steal the Declaration of Independence. I just can’t get enough of the Robin-Hood-like (or at least not entirely bad) con-artists and grifters and thieves, and all of the cleverness involved in a good heist/con, especially when it involves giving the badguys what’s due them. I’m an upstanding citizen, honest, but this sort of thing is fascinating to read about. XD There is also a sad lack of such things, especially in the book (YA especially) world! (If you know of any, either books or films or shows, pleeeease do tell me.) I would probably never be able to write a con/heisty story because my brain just isn’t clever enough, but the thought is there and if I ever dared, I would love to try.


Sooo… There’s my authorly bucket list, or some semblance thereof! What is yours? I guess I should work on these… Slowly… Somehow.

Or… I don’t know, maybe I should throw all of that together and actually sit down to write an epically fantastical epic fantasy full of full-fledged battles and deep villains who time travel (by means magical, scientific, and otherwise), with heroes and heroines from fairy tale stories, who use mind communication and carry out brilliant heists and cons.
. . .
UM. Actually, I would totally read that because it would be awesome. O_O OH MY GOODNESS. *facepalm* I need to stop coming up with story ideas and write some of my current ones.

What have I done.

(This is why I should not brainstorm when my brain is asleep and susceptible to madness…)

*hastily sweeps new plotbunnies under rug, tramples them quickly, leaves a large and heavy safe on top to keep them down, and surreptitiously walks away whistling as if nothing happened*

And I Tag

Abi // Ashlee // Kelsey // Jenelle // Katie/Robyn // Claire // Any writers who want to.

But please!! Do feel free to snag this if it looks interesting! (And let me know if you do! I would love to read such posts. :))

I’m just trying to spread out all my tagging this week, otherwise EVERYONE would
be tagged with EVERYTHING and it would be exhausting. XD

So there’s the last of my tag catchup posts! *queue cheering* I will now leave y’all in peace. 😉


Do any of you writers have problems like mine, or tips to overcome them?

What would you like to try in your writing? (Different POVs, steampunk, talking umbrellas…?)


Do you know any good heisty books/shows??

Tell me all! Let the Authorly chatting begin! 🙂

28 thoughts on “Authorly Bucket List

  1. Oooh Cool tag! Thanks for tagging me. 😀 I’ll be doing this sometime in the near future.
    I love retellings! They are so much fun.
    And yes actually writing can be sooo hard! Just making myself sit down and do work can be like pulling teeth sometimes. It would be nice if the writing life could be novels being finished perfect first draft and spinning out publishable books non-stop. lol

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can’t help you with heisty books/shows. But if you mash all the stuff in this list together into one novel like you said, and write that, I will totally read it. (And also help you as much as you need with editing, beta reading, etc.)
    What are you going to do for your Twelve Dancing Princesses retelling, out of curiosity?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha, I probably won’t actually write that… but you never know. 😉 SO MANY STORY IDEAS. (And thank you!)

      Umm… I’m working on that. *shuffles feet* It doesn’t really have a PLOT yet, but I kind of have the princesses named and figured out and some backstory and a couple twist ideas. And I’m thinking it’ll have several (or… like… three or four?) love stories because I want to have a gardener AND a soldier, AND a prince and somebody else so… yep. Anyways I have ideas, I just… don’t have a solid plot or ending yet, which is kind of important, you know? 😛 So if I can get it figured out I’ll write it for NaNo. If not, I might anyway… or do some other fairytale retelling since I have lots of other ideas. XD


  3. I would totally read that story. lol! Get writing! 😛
    I’m actually doing Camp NaNo for the first time ever next month and going to attempt to write a Sleeping Beauty re-telling. I’ve been eyeing fairy tale re-tellings (or at least stories vaguely based on fairy tales) for some time now. So many ideas…. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well then. XD I probably won’t actually end up doing anything with it… BUT YOU NEVER KNOW. Ha. 😉

      Ooh, good luck on Camp! That’s awesome. 😀 And Sleeping Beauty, yayyy! Fairytale retellings are the best. ❤ I hope that'll go fabulously for you!!


  4. ALL THE BLOGGING AND TAGS. You did SO amazing this week catching up with these things. Seriously, you’re like a blogging ninja!

    Oh my, this tag is awesome. o.o I’m totally tempted to go all Leverage on it and steal it. *cough, cough, cough* But lists about writing! What is better than that?

    I am SO with you on the fighting/battles thing. *groooans* I don’t like writing themmm! I mean, how am I supposed to know how an actual sword fight goes and then use clever, interesting words to tell others about it?! But I seem to love torturing myself because I put SO MANY battle scenes in my stories. It’s INSANE. And I dread every one, yet I keep doing it!!! Especially my Colors of a Dragon Scales series. So much fighting and even ginormous battles. o.o Whyyyy???

    And your whole list of things you’d like to try is MY list!!! I’ve ALWAYS wanted to write all those things. Since I was tiny I wanted to do a fairytale retelling and am only just now attempting it. And I love, love, love mind reading and so need to play around with that sometime. Plus The Avriot came out of my love for all things time travel-y annnd it had to be set in a different world because historical research? Bleh. Not my thing. xD Plus I just very rarely want to write anything set in our world. It’s horrible.

    AND CON/HEISTY THINGS YESH. I’m pretty almost absolutely positive I’ll never write something like that even though I WANT to. But I am so not smart enough to pull off a con book. o.o Just noooo.

    OH MY WORD. A story with ALL these things? CELTI. DO YOU KNOW HOW COOL THAT WOULD BE? Okay, okay. I shouldn’t be encouraging this but SDKFJ:LSDJFDSJF THAT WOULD BE SO COOL.
    I’m done now.

    This post was fabulous and this whole week of all the fun Celti posts was GRAND. Also I really may have to steal this tag sometimes if that wouldn’t be too awful of me. *cough, cough, cough*

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aaah, thank you! ^_^ A blogging ninja… I LIKE. *assumes heroic ninja pose and disappears*

      Yesss! Do steal it if you want! 😀 You’re right, lists about writing are the BEST.

      It’s just so HARD to do fighting scenes. *flails* I’m sure yours are awesome, though. 😉 And methinks it’s because epic fantasy just sort of wants lots of battles so that’s probably why. XD It is a bit hard on us poor authors though… I’m with you on the “use clever interesting words to tell about it thing.” Yes. That’s so hard. o.o I just feel so unintelligent when I write fighting. 😛

      BRAINTWINS. Fairytales and mind reading and time travel, oh my! Ah, yes, The Avriot is time travel in a different world, yes. *nod nod* Obviously you are wise about this sort of thing. XD And I can’t blame you for not wanting to write things set here… I don’t much either and it’s totally WEIRD that I’ve been writing so much of it lately! o.o Other worlds are so much awesomer…

      SAME. Cons and heist just require so much smartness. XD

      It would be kind of cool wouldn’t it… I prooobably won’t end up doing anything with it. But you never know. 😉

      Thank you so muuuch! I’m so glad you found it grand. ^_^ And take it, take it! Do! If you want to, I would looove to see your answers! 😀


  5. This is so awesome!

    Yay to fairytale retellings! Yay to more crime-heist stuff. Retellings are one of my favorites! And the Twelve Dancing Princesses would make an awesome retelling. Think of the POV possiblities! It could even be like a time travel story, like when the princes take them away at night. That would so cool!

    As for the crime stuff, sometimes I read mysteries, but I’ve never read anything about the people on the other side of the law. I think you’re right, it’s kind of lacking in books. Although there is a ton of it going on the screen. Leverage is awesome!

    Yes to telepathy! I’m hoping to write a series with superpowers in it. I don’t know when I’ll start though. It’s one out of a hundred ideas. But I’ve already come up with a lot of the characters and there’s at least three with telepathy. . . Yeah, I went a little crazy with that. The only thing is that I haven’t actually read any books with telepathy in them. So. . . I’m kind of going it blind. But I’m hoping to “research” before I really dive into the series.

    Fantasy is the best ever! And battles are super hard. I can do individual duels/ skirmishes more or less, but the full out battle? What? I just throw all the characters together and say, “Okay, now fight each other. Guys? Hello? The swords- you’re supposed to use them at each other.” I don’t know. But I’ve come to the realization that maybe battle scenes are supposed to be really crazy and nonsensical. I mean, whenever I watch battles in the movies, and really think about it, it’s all crazyness. Everyone is everywhere. Things move fast, or in slow motion. The leaders can talk about strategy all they want, but once they get into it, it’s all chaos (this makes me think mostly of the Celtics, I guess). If I were in a battle I would get tunnel visioned to the one person I was fighting, or I would be completely scatter-brained trying to take everything in at once (aka, I would never make it out alive). So I think maybe general confusion is might not be all that inaccurate for a battle scene.

    The actual writing. Ugh, the actual writing! I’ll write for almost a week straight and then drop it for a month. . . or longer.

    I might have to snag this tag. It looks fun!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yay for all the yayness! 🙂 And yes, there would be great POV possibilities with the 12DP stories… Time travel is also an idea… 😀

      Mysteries are cool! That’s true. And you watch Leverage? AWESOME! 😀 I love it. ^_^ I have read a few books though… I really liked Heist Society by Ally Carter. 🙂

      Ooh, superpowers! AWESOME. Hmm, I might have to try that someday too. XD Your story sounds so cool!! And haha, I know the feeling… sooo many ideas. 🙂 The main telepathy books I can think of right now are Jill Williamson’s Blood of Kings Trilogy. That had some interesting mind stuff.

      Yay for fantasy! 😀 Oh my goodness, I about died laughing at your description of trying to get them to fight. XD I LOVE IT. And you raise some really good points… Chaos can kinda be a good thing with battle-writing, I guess. 😀 I’ll have to keep that in mind…

      It’s a problem! Motivation to actually write can sometimes be hard to find. 😉

      Awesome! I’d love to read your post if you do it! ^_^


  6. Ah, villains. I sometimes have really deep, well-developed villains, and sometimes they’re sort of flat, but they always tend to be effective and even menacing. I’ve gone the whole way from total psychopath (Andrew Scott’s Moriarty) to classy (a la Count Dooku) and back again. I don’t think I’ve ever done a very sympathetic villain, though–he might be interesting, sure, but you’ll certainly love to hate him 😉 One of my favorite villains isn’t even super wacko or have a messed-up childhood or whatever–he’s just in it for profit. Now I just have to do the opposite–a villain who’s a raving communist. 😛 (I’m sorry if that’s offensive to some people, but I really do like capitalism–if I lived in a communist nation, I’d be stuck with this horrible job I hate until the day I died. As it is, I can go looking for another one any time I want! So, I’m really not apologizing. Unapologetic Capitalist–I should put that on a t-shirt. No, wait… maybe “Unapologetic Conservative.” 😛 )

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Battle scenes are totally something I could never do. .-. I’m mean, they’re cool to read about and all that, but I would so mess it up if I tried. xD
    And dem plot bunnies. *shakes head* My brain-keeper apparently hangs up their pelts on the wall of my brain.

    Liked by 1 person

    • They are difficult indeed! But… yes, fun to read about. 😀
      Oh my goodness. *diiies* XD That’s hilarious. …And awkward for you. *cough* BUT STILL. Last night I was talking with my sis and we were coming up with all sorts of analogies and talking about going in the the plot-woods with a plot-gun and shooting plots… It was kind of awesome.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: Bucket Lists and Sisterhood Awards | The Overactive Imagination

  9. Pingback: Authorly Bucket List | Kelsey Bryant

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