Books

Welcome to the “books” section of my blog, Cataloging a Writer’s Craft. Pictured immediately below are my first two novels, Rhinos, and Sun Protection Factor. Below that, follow me through my writing process, starting (at the bottom of the page) with the near-completion of my first ever novel Rhinos.

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Update September 26th, 2018: I’ve finished my rough draft about a month ago and it ranks in at 93,000 words. With the start of school, I haven’t been focused on anything other than studying and haven’t been working on the book at all. One thing that is throwing me off, though, is the fact that after I read the rough draft through, I didn’t feel like I needed to do a complete “overhaul” of the draft. On only the second draft, it feels like I’m already line-editing.

Update July 27th, 2018: I just hit the 70,000 word mark for the rough draft of my third novel, and I’m just now nearing the climax. I’m hoping to get the rough draft done by the end of the summer, but I think it’s going to be a squeeze.

Update April 14th, 2018: A little over 30,000 words on my third book. I’m having trouble giving the readers a defined goal of my protagonist’s. Other than that, I think the rough draft will give me a lot to work with when it’s done!

Update March 17th, 2018: I have started in on my third book, which is a contemporary YA centered around a high school scene. It is currently at 14,000 words. This one is setting up to be a challenge (with POV, planning, and trying to pull-off a plot twist)–I hope it turns out okay!

Overview of my book Sun Protection Factor: 

Finding her Aunt’s funeral invitation in the mail eight years ago—a relative whom had been dying for a year without her knowledge—has left college student Margo Trand well-versed in the poisonous quality of secrets. 

Having moved on from the pain of being deceived about her Aunt’s illness, Margo’s life has fallen into a monotonous rhythm. On a whim Margo applies for an internship at NASA, something she knows little about. Her acceptance is a surprise, but even more surprising is the offer of a high-level job. Exhilarated by the prospect of an important position, Margo takes it. 

Now everything’s wrong. The job is not even connected to NASA, but within a clandestine organization called the “Cloud Objective.” It’s mission: hide the sun’s imminent demise from the public, using synthetic clouds as cover. Not a cloud in the sky is real. Margo is quickly put to work and expected to fall-in-line to help maintain the illusion of a healthy sun. 

With the secret of the Cloud Objective weighing on her shoulders, only one thing’s for certain: Margo’s once-ordinary life has turned into something unrecognizable. 

Update February 11th, 2018: Well…formatting the interior and creating the cover of my book was possibly the worst part of this whole writing process. I didn’t actually order the very final perfect batch of Sun Protection Factor until the second week in January because I just kept having problems with the bleed on the cover, and then I had to manually fix all of the indentations of the interior paragraph by paragraph (the indentations were too big) because a Google Document doesn’t transfer over very well to Word. In the end, though, I ordered twenty-five copies of it, and they all turned out great. I’m very happy with this book and the huge amount of improvement you can see between it and Rhinos. I have already jumped into writing the rough draft of my third book, which I’ve started writing with minimal pre-writing.

Update November 15th, 2017: I don’t exactly know what propelled me into such a writing frenzy, but over Veteran’s Day weekend I finished my second novel, Sun Protection Factor! I was lucky to have a relatively homework-free three-day weekend, so I took the opportunity to write as much as I could. Now I’ve just submitted my formatted interior and cover art to Createspace for a file review (which should be done in less than 24 hours). I’ve worked a bit on formatting my book for agent submission, but I expect that to be a tedious process. Hopefully by Thanksgiving I’ll have ordered the first finalized batch of my book, and over the break make a lot of headway on a query letter and agent submission.

Update October 14th, 2017: Hello! I realize I haven’t posted in a long while, and while I feel a bit guilty, I also have to stand by my priorities (school always coming first). I’ve been spending almost all of my time doing homework and studying, with time after that going to my co-curricular activities, golf and flute. However, over the summer I did realize my goal of distributing to beta readers and I’m now on one of the last edits of the entire novel. I’ve also named the book: Sun Protection Factor. It should rank in at a bit more than 86,000 words (about twice as long as “Rhinos”). I’ve also started plans for the cover of the Createspace copy, though I’m in no position to dive into any sort of publishing yet. Anyway, as of today, I’m hoping to have my final draft done by New Years.

Update June 23rd, 2017: Somehow I got through the first round of revisions on my New Book before the school year ended. I don’t even know how. Golf season started soon after I posted my last update (ended up going and doing well at State!), the national Advanced Placement test sucked up all my time for studying, there were band obligations, flute performances, and finals. Pretty great school year, though! Really accomplished a lot. My goal for the summer is to finalize my beta-reader draft and distribute to the betas.

Update February 21st, 2017: I have finished my rough draft at 78,000 words! I have started revising it, but it’s a slow process, a lot slower than how Rhinos went. I’m having to spend days away from it all the time due to school work, and every time I come back to it, it just looks worse. It will take me awhile to get it up to par.

Update December 27th, 2016: I am moving my attention in full to my new book. This book is still in the rough draft process, currently at 72,000 words. I was hoping to have the draft done by Christmas, but that didn’t happen due to my prioritizing of school work first. I am incredibly happy with how this book is coming along, and hitting 70,000 is kinda crazy. Rhinos only got up to 48,000, so getting up that high with the word count is exhilarating!

Update October 18th, 2016: I am still querying agents with my novel Rhinos, but it’s a slow process. On the less business-y side of writing, I have reached 20,000 words with my rough draft on my latest novel!

Overview of my book Rhinos:

After being bullied mercilessly by Rhinos, (those things in life that run right over you and don’t look back) fifteen year old Alexandra Whiteley has realized that nothing is more important than staying in reality, being in complete control, and never being ignorant. When ending up with a fractured rib from a Rhino, Alex’s parents move her from her current school in tornado central, Nebraska, to a ten-acre house in a small town of Wyoming. 

At her new house, Alex finds a mysterious necklace with an impossible note talking of magic attached to it. Never straying from her strong-willed beliefs, Alex finds herself in the presence of an equally strong-willed boy at the grocery store. Perplexed and scared by how much he seems to know, Alex makes it her mission to understand what exactly is going on around her. 

Update: I am completely done writing my book! I have also already received some paperback copies of my book from Createspace. I water-colored the cover myself and formatted the interior (I think the book looks amazing). Right now I am in the process of querying agents.

Update: I have finished my beta reader final draft and distributed it out to my beta readers.

For two years, I have been working on a YA book titled Rhinos. I hope to get this book traditionally published with an agent. Right now, I am working on my final beta-reader draft (which, to me, means that I am going to release it to the beta readers after I finish revising and editing it one final time). My rough draft took me a year to finish. Later, when I am closer to querying agents, I will share with you some pages that are helping me out in the process. And if you have no idea what “beta readers” are, or what an “agent” is, or what “traditionally publishing” means, I either have a blog about it, or I am working on a blog about it. Stay tuned for updates on my book. 🙂

 

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