If I haven’t shouted from the rooftops yet, my birthday was yesterday July 28th!!! I’m 32 years old. I’m embracing my 30’s. I’m not going to lie when I was 29, I was so scared to turn 30. I always thought it was old; now, I know better LOL. I got a nice surprise yesterday because my guest posts on Psycho Thrillers blog went live!!! If anyone would like to show me some love, here’s the links:

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

When I was in the 6th grade, I had dreams of becoming an artist. I didn’t follow my dreams until my 30’s. Gage Shepherd was brave enough to follow his dreams at a young age, and that’s quite impressive! I couldn’t stop smiling after reading his article in The Journal newspaper today. His book Comet Blasts Off is sold online and on the shelves of South Berkeley Pharmacy. Not only is young Gage Shepherd a talented writer, but he’s also a kind person. For every order, $1 goes to the National Humane Society. It can’t get any better than that.

2024783810Comet’s Adventures Website

Comet the kitten naps a lot! He dreams a lot too! Comet’s dreams take

him on exciting adventures. In “The Adventures of Comet-Comet Blasts Off,”

Comet dreams of launching off into outer space. In outer space Comet

meets another comet-Hailey’s comet. Young children will learn

science facts while enjoying colorful, fun illustrations

of two friends playing amongst the stars.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

Weekend Writing Warriors is an awesome blog hop that allows authors and writers to share their unpublished or published work with the blogosphere every Sunday. Authors share an 8 sentence excerpt and can get feedback. To see all the talented writers, please visit WeWriWa’s website on Sunday (July 27th).

Last week, I shared an excerpt of my flash fiction story called One Missed Call. I really appreciate everyone’s feedback. Here’s the last installment:

She wanted to see if she could make it in Hollywood, but I wanted her to stay in Boston and help me run the family business. I didn’t say goodbye. Now, I’ll never get the chance. I push the button on my cell phone and place it near my right ear. “Sarah, Sarah, the train went too fast in a curve! We’re crashing! I love you, I love you, Sarah!” I cringe as I listen to the message again and again.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

I found this awesome list on These Are People You Know’s Tumblr. To see the entire list (I know you want to hee hee), check out the site. I thought it’d be fun to break down each point in how it relates to me. Here goes:

1.  People think you’re angry or upset when really you are just thinking.

  • I get asked all the time “what’s wrong?” and sometimes it gets really annoying. My cousin (the first time I met her) asked if I was the type to wear a permanent bitchface. I answered as honestly as I could, being taken aback hee hee.

2.  You can do the INTJ stare, that look of pure analyzing coupled with a slightly sardonic smile that makes people feel uneasy.

  • I love picking on people, especially when they least expect it. Sometimes it’s fun to notice a guy looking over at me if I’m in a cafe or library. As a game, I’ll steadily keep glancing over in his direction to get his attention, then I’ll just stare and stare to see if I can get a reaction.

3.  You silently listen to people trying to figure out how to do something, then chime in with the correct way while they stare at you stunned because they didn’t think you where paying attention.

  • This happens all of the time! I’m pretty good at tuning people out because I’m always inside my head, so people tend to think I’m not listening. I really am though; I’m good with multi-tasking. I always laugh when my friends or co-workers are caught off guard. When the quiet ones speak, you must listen hee hee.

4.  You look at every conflict situation as an interesting idea, and it pisses off the person you’re in a conflict with.

  • I’m very fascinated with psychology and sociology. So yes, I tend to think of life as social experiments. If someone is upset with me, I view it as a case study to observe his/her reactions and what steps I take to make the situation better. It’s more about being interested in the situation, instead of considering his/her feelings. But, if both ways tend to have a positive outcome (me apologizing if I was wrong), then I don’t see the problem.

5.  When you are having a conversation with someone and you can use more abverbs such as “however, yet, on the other hand” more often than you should because that is the “break” between different view points about the subject being conversed. Then the recipient stares at you blankly.

  • I’m the queen of using “however” and “but” hee hee. I honestly believe every explanation or opinion can be changed depending on circumstances. Since I’m constantly thinking of every possible outcome, I have to throw in those adverbs to break my opinion down. I think this way, but if this happened, then my thought process could change…

6.  When in a debate, your most commonly used phrase is “Could I get some proof for that?”

  • I use this phrase all the time, and it could be for something simple. My co-worker is pretty cool; she loves telling random fun facts every day. And like clockwork, I always have my suspicions and tell her to state her source hee hee.

7.  When you can effectively argue both sides of a debate, you just pick one for fun.

  • I love debating if it’s fun. I can think on the top of my head pretty fast, and I can be quite convincing even if I don’t believe in what I’m saying. I hate when people use debate to try and act like their opinion is gospel. That if you don’t agree, then you’re automatically wrong. With these types of folks, that’s usually when I automatically take their opposite viewpoint just to piss them off.

8.  You have 3-10 different conversations in your head with the person you’re actually talking to.

  • This goes back to I’m a good multi-tasker. :) If only my real conversations were more interesting than the ones in my head.

9.  You root for the smart villain rather than the dumb hero.

  • Yes, yes, and yes! I always love the villains in movies, TV, especially reality TV. The villains make things fun. I hate being bored, and when people are in conflict, then it’s entertaining. The crazier, the better. Plus, I appreciate intelligence and charm, characteristics of a villain (not that I’d want to meet one in real life).

10.  When people say you always look like you are planning/plotting something; the association then often makes them conclude that you look evil.

  • Am I always plotting? I’ll never tell. But, I’m always thinking people are plotting, in turn, trying to figure out their scheme.

11.  When you just finished explaining something profound and interesting and the person who you are talking to goes “HUH?”

  • This drives me bonkers! I’m usually quiet, so when I take the time to speak, please listen. I hate when I go into an explanation (with excitement!), then the other person didn’t get it at all. It bums me out and then I’m unmotivated to explain it again.

12.  When you have a large mess but know exactly where everything is and people are amazed that you can find anything. You also go through cycles of neat-messy-neat-messy-neat. You are never rigidly neat, you are never overwhelmingly messy.

  • This is me to a tee. With my mess, especially with stacks of papers and notebooks, I know exactly where something is. That’s why I get lost if it’s not in the spot where I left it.

13.  Someone starts a sentence with “Why don’t you…” and you turn and give them a very mean look.

  • I appreciate advice, I really do, but don’t tell me that I should do something. Give advice and leave it at that. Don’t make me seem incompetent.

14.  You constantly watch people do things and create more efficient ways of doing them.

  • I’m an observer. I like to watch people (not in a stalkerish way I hope!) and from that, I can gather if they are doing something that’s more work than necessary. I especially study my co-workers. I’m not making things harder than they have to be. That’s ludicrous.

15.  Before every situation you think out every possible outcome and work your way towards the ideal one.

  • I don’t know any other way to analyze things. It takes me a long time to reach a decision, but when I do, I know it’s the best one.

16.  Someone tries to hurt you with words and you don’t feel a thing, in fact, you kind of find it funny.

  • It’s hilarious when someone tries to get under my skin and gets upset when I have no reaction. Sorry buddy. If you only know me on the surface, then of course, you don’t know what will piss me off. Hearing that someone is talking behind my back doesn’t anger me. Whatever. It’s just an opinion. Being nasty to my face is annoying, but I won’t shed any tears. I’ll just look at you like you’re stuck on stupid (while in my head thinking of every sarcastic comeback that I can say to get some laughs).

17.  You’re listening to someone you quickly jump ahead to their point while multi-processing their motive for telling you, how they jumped to that topic, what level of response will be adequate (verbal, head nod, etc.), and planning whatever it is you rather be doing…all before they even finish their sentence.

  • I’m a firm believer that everyone does things for a reason. If you’re talking to me, then it’s for something. If you’re bringing something up, then you either want my opinion or you want my help. I always try to figure out people’s motives when they’re talking to me. I swear I was a spy or detective in my previous life hee hee.

18.  When you really, honestly don’t care what most other people think about you, and are perfectly fine doing things your own way.

  • I don’t care what people think of me. I’m going to do me. If you don’t like me, then don’t hang out with me. If you do like me, then great. I won’t lose any sleep over someone’s opinion.

For all the INTJs out there, is there anything I missed?

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

 

What should I do after participating in July’s Camp NaNo? Join another challenge, of course!

August 1st-August 29th is the Conquer the Craft in 29 Days DIY MFA’s Writing Challenge. Every day writers will get a writing prompt to focus on, and for the last 2 days of the month, there will be a writing retreat (August 30-August 31). Anyone participating can use the hashtag #CTC29 to socialize with other members.

I’ve been searching for online writing classes to take, trying to learn more about the craft. But, everything seems to be the instructor won’t give feedback. So what’s the point? The line that got me to sign up for this 29 day challenge was:

We’ve designed this series of writing exercises not just to inspire you and get your creativity going, but also to help improve your writing. Each prompt targets a specific technique or element of craft so that by the end of the month not only will you be writing more, you’ll be writing better.

If anyone’s interested in signing up for the FREE DIY MFA challenge, here’s the link: Conquer the Craft in 29 Days.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

 

Please welcome my special guest Meka James, the author of Fiendish. Please enjoy her insightful interview.

223755211.  Do you have any advice for other writers trying to get published?

Not really. I’ve only published one book and I’m still learning my way through the process. I guess the best thing I could say would be to find help. Join forums designed for writers and engage in those forums. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or more importantly ask for help when/if you  need it. The cyber world can be scary, but at the same time I’ve found some very friendly and helpful people along the way.

2.  Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

Thank you for the support! I don’t have a huge following by any means, but I do appreciate those that have bought the book, and let me know they enjoyed it.

3.  What are your thoughts on the fact that both trade and self-published authors have to promote their own work?

I wasn’t aware that trade authors had to do this. I thought the whole idea of being a trade author was that you had people to do this for you through your publishing house. I’m new, I’m naive on some things I guess, but if a trade author HAS to do their own promotion what is the benefit of having a publishing house? To have a better chance of having your book in bookstores?

4.  What genre do you write for? Your favorite aspect? Your least favorite aspect?

I write what I think is romance, only my book didn’t have the industry standard HEA so I don’t think it really falls into that category. I guess my least favorite aspect is the limitations on the genre. I understand that a romance is supposed to end with sunshine and rainbows, but sometimes that’s not how life works. Yes, these are works of fiction so it could go that way if we, the author wanted to direct it that way, but sometimes it’s just not possible. My favorite aspect would be creating the world and dynamics that bring my characters to life.

5.  What are your current/next projects?

My current project is a follow up novel to Fiendish that I’ve titled Not Broken.

6.  Do you prefer to work alone or with critique partners/beta-readers?

With partners. I need to be able to talk out loud (or on a keyboard) to someone to bounce around ideas. I tend to let myself get stuck a lot, and mostly on small details and I need that push to say it’s fine leave it and move on.

7.  How do you find time to write?

As a mother of 4 I tell ya, it’s hard. Especially now during the summer with all the kids home. When they are in school, I write while they at school so that when they get home my attention can be focused on them.

8.  Did you always want to become an author?

No, the thought never crossed my mind. Two years ago (well maybe almost 3) I started writing a blog story. Things have snowballed from there.

9.  Are there any writing rituals you complete before creating your manuscripts/drafts?

Nope. I will get an idea, maybe the whole first chapter will come to me and I work it out from there. I suck at planning and outlining so if I get a great scene for the story, I’ll write it out and try to figure out how I can work it in later.

10.  Do you write the beginning/opening first or do you tend to write out of order (with whatever scenes interest you the most)?

I always start at the beginning since that’s how my ideas hit me. From there I like to try and write in order so I don’t confuse myself, but if a scene comes to me, I will write it out and worry about where it may fit in later.

11.  Have you ever hated something you wrote?

All the time. I am my biggest critic. I will read something I wrote and think it’s crappy. I’ll send it over to a friend of mine (back to that partner thing LOL) and have her read it. She will either agree it’s crap and give me some ideas as to why, or she’ll tell me I’m crazy and it works well.

12.  Which is the easiest for you–novel, novella, or short story? Why?

Can’t really say since I’ve only written the novel. Since my book tops out at over 600 pages, I’m thinking I’m a tad wordy so a novella or short story may be hard for me. I do want to try my hand at an erotic novella, so we’ll see how that goes.

13.  While you were writing, did you ever feel like you were one of your characters?

At times. I would try to imagine how I would react in that situation in hopes of getting the emotion right for the scene.

14.  How did you come up with the title?

My main character, Seth. Considering the nature of the book and the person I was making him out to be, the word fit him perfectly.

15.  What inspired you to write your latest book? What is the book about?

Fiendish started out as a simple blog story. It was a challenge prompt in my writing group, to take a classic fairytale and give it our own spin and adult twist. I’d always loved Beauty and the Beast so I chose that for my base. I knew I wanted something different than the outwardly beastly guy who needed to be humbled and find love to break a curse, so Seth was born. He’s perfection on the outside and beyond beastly on the inside. I tried to bring in some aspects of the fairytale, but it’s not a standard retelling by any means. The quote at the beginning of the book really speaks to Calida’s character. She does have a lot of strength in her perceived weakness. What she’s able to endure, and overcome is proof of that.

A friend who loved the concept convinced me I should take it further and make it into a novel. I was hesitant because of the subject matter, but decided to take the plunge. Her unexpected passing made this project even more meaningful for me. Now it’s ready and out for the world to (hopefully) enjoy.

The book Fiendish is a dark and twisted take on Beauty and the Beast. The story follows the relationship of Calida Alexander and Seth Jokobi. Seth is a man with a very dark nature, one that he hides well from the world. When he and Calida meet, she’s taken in by the ‘mask’ he wears and the two begin a relationship. As things progress his darker side starts to come through and his true nature is revealed. Calida is forced to deal with her conflicted emotions while lying to those around her in order to keep them safe.

16.  Any blogs, websites, social media you’d like to share?

Certainly.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

Weekend Writing Warriors is an awesome site that brings writers together who want to share their work to the blogosphere. All writers and authors are welcome to join, introducing 8 sentence excerpts from published and/or unpublished works. Please visit WeWriWa tomorrow to read all the talented writers.

Lately, I’ve been trying flash fiction. This was my first attempt.  My dream is to appear in Everyday Fiction one day. My drama is no more than 100 words, and I need all the help I can get to make it polished. My story is called One Missed Call.

Here goes:

If you could do something differently, would you? I definitely would in a heartbeat. Distraught, I’m lying in my bed. In the darkness. Darkness where I belong. I can’t stop crying. I can’t stop replaying the voicemail my little sister left me. If only I would have answered her call…Earlier today she took the train to California.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby