Thursday, April 27, 2017

Deliver by Tricia Mingerink

   Wayyy back in some month of last year I think, I reviewed Dare and Deny. You can read that here. Today, I'm going to be reviewing the very last book! explanation of what the heck even happened to me and this book.

   This book was a hype for me, mostly because of Martyn! I shall now use this gif I found that amused and described me.


   The only problem with the book was two girls. Renna and Kayleigh. Renna has always been a character I've disliked, and Kayleigh wasn't my favorite either. They were pretty grating, so I ended up putting it aside as a DNF.

   I reviewed the book on Goodreads, had a conversation with the amazing, fabulous, and sweet author Tricia Mingerink, and I'll be picking it back up within a week! So this is a partial review, I guess. :P

   I'll be attending my first ever Facebook party tomorrow! GO JOIN IT YOU GUYS IM SO EXCITED. Here's the glorious link.

   So I hope you'll read the book, because despite my dislikes, it really is a fabulous book! And watch for two more posts on this series! One will be on why I thought the books were good, and one on why I thought my favorite characters were good!

   Rachael Steele

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Camp Update

   I've participated in two NaNoWriMo's, and two Camp NaNoWriMo's, and I've won every time. Met my goal before the last day. Had fun during it, even.
   This month I failed NaNoWriMo.
    Now before I go on, I'd like to go ahead and say that I don't believe you can fail a NaNo event. You can fall short of your goal, but you can't fail. I didn't "fail" per say, I just discovered something.

   I was going strong in the beginning. Started out just like everyone else. But then I realized something.
   I hated my book.
   After reading through a few blog posts, and emailing the fabulous Nadine Brandes for help, I decided to put it aside for a while. Work on something else.
   So for this short post, I'd just like to say that if you're participating in Camp NaNoWriMo this month, you've already won. You did the thing. You may have won already like a few insane people have done, you may be ahead in your word count, or you may be behind. No matter where you are, you're a Camp Winner.
   *at this point Rachael realizes she's sounding like a millennial who thinks that everyone's a winner*
   Also, update, I HAVE FOUND A TV SHOW TO BINGE ON. After The Man in the High Castle fail, I found a new one. It's one I've been eyeing for awhile, but I'm not an alien fan.

   I WILL MARRY BEN YOU GUYS. He's sweet, considerate, selfless, and EPIC.

   Ok, seriously, that's all.


   How is Camp going for you guys? Are you behind or ahead? Do you have any funny Camp stories/conversations? ALSO IF YOU HAVE A SNIPPET YOU WANT TO SHARE SHARE IT.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Camp NaNoWriMo Week #1

  Let's just pretend that I didn't disappear the last two weeks...and that this post isn't a day late. So setting that aside, I AM ALIVE HI HELLO I HAVE SURVIVED.
  I documented what happened the first week, day by day. AND I HAVE DREAMER SNIPPETS AS I SAID I WOULD. So without further ado, here is my first week of NaNoWriMo.

  Day 1: The First

  Mission: write lots of words

  Mission status: FAIL

  In my defense, I woke up and immediately went to a church workday. That was fun, however, and the workday included these things.
  •   awkwardly standing around until I saw a job
  •   grabbing a rake and raking pine needles
  •   consulting on how high to put swings so tall people can use them (I'm five ten and one of the three teenagers there taller than five six).
  •   watching a man fix the swings and offering stupid comments to make myself laugh
  •   being dragged away by a friend to help garden
  •   realizing my shirt under my sweat shirt was too small #oops
  •   lots of digging
  •   discussing minute phones with fren as he we pulled a wheel barrel of clay across the property
  •   weeding with said fren and complaining about stickers
  •   playing on a swing set and jungle gym because that's what we do

  So it looks like I was productive, but when I got home I really didn't do anything...I got maybe 1.5k written, so that's that.

  Day 2: The Second

  Mission: write some words

  Mission status: success in lowercase

  I wrote some words frens.

  Day 3: The Third

  Mission: write words with four cousins in the house


  Emma and I sat at the table and did school/listened to music/drank lattes. I learned how to make something that looks kind of fancy, so that's cool. I got fresh air. I wrote some. I survived. Praise me.

  Day 4: The Fourth


  Mission status: SUCCESS

  I was successful today too, and I got words done. However, we have a dilemma. I worked the next day.

  Only two or three hours though, so that was good. I survived that too and somehow made it home to write. By this time, though, Wanderlust had struck.
  Y'all, if you remember when I talked about Wanderlust, one of the POV characters is named Helena. And I thought that her backstory was just an abusive brother, but...As I plan her out, I have found that it goes much deeper than that. And I've been squishing her for three days.

  Day 5: Why am I writing out the numbers when I said Day 5?

  Mission: Survive work

  Mission status: SUCCESS

  I pumped out some great words, guys. Some. And all for Wanderlust. Someone help me please. Also Helena is adorable, and I cheated and wrote a scene with Sierra as a guy. The sad thing is he was innocently flirting, but she didn't recognize it as anything other than being nice, because to her flirting was always much more out-there. He was adorable. I have my backup ship if Zai tragically vanishes. #ididn'tdoit
  Here's a smol snippet.

  Day 6: you get it by now

  Mission: survive volunteering in early morning+school+work

  Mission status: FAIL


  Day 7: imma stop now

  Mission: write 3k

  Mission status: still going I'll alert you next week

  I worked awhile today, came home and studied for a history test, and then took it. I then went on to FaceTime my cousin and we cleaned our rooms. His looks great. Mine sucks.

 Also have some snippets.





  So here is what has happened. I'm sorry for my ranting.

  Has anything crazy happened to you? Are you surviving? SPEAK BEANS!



Friday, March 17, 2017

Red King Has Returned

   So for NaNoWriMo 2016, I wrote a book called Red King*. That month Cait did something called Beautiful Books, basically Beautiful People for books, and I did it. You can read that here if you so desire.
   I'm going to steal the questions for this month's project, Red King Draft 2.**

   *I am so sorry for the overload of information and posts about my books. This is the last, I swear, at least for awhile.

   **I'm using these instead of the ones I did for Wanderlust so you can compare. ^-^

   1. what inspired the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea?

   Like I said in my past post, I read the Lunar Chronicles and wanted to do a fairy tale retelling, but in this post, you get the enthralling other side.
   Emmy's side.

   So Emmy's story came about because I wanted to do a desert story. I think know the original draft was a totally rip off of An Ember in the Ashes, but still. ^-^ Then at the OYAN conference I pitched my idea about "an illegal telepath" to Stephanie Morrill! AND SHE SAID IT SOUNDED COOL GUYS WOO HOO.

   And then one night after an intense day of peopling, I told Hannah and Sierra that I hated all my projects.
   Except two.
   Red King, the failed fairy tale retelling, and Fire and Gold, the desert story.
   So obviously the next step is to combine them.

   2. Describe what your novel is about!

   I think my fabulous synopsis which took 203828 drafts to write sums it up, and if it doesn't, I'll write draft 203829.
   At one time, Dreamers were free to manipulate the minds of others. To serve as healers, to read people as judges, and to give people good dreams.
And then that all changed.

Emmy simply wants to live without fear of the law demanding the death of all Dreamers. Catus simply wants to sleep at night without nightmares. Neither can accomplish it without the other in a twisted way.

Amidst the Dreamer danger within the palace, a growing threat, a rumor, really lurks beyond. Inside, however, Catus's insanity constantly haunts him, and now Emmy. Moving past that itself is impossible, even more so now that she's considered a traitor by her own kind.

   What doth thou think???

   3. What is your book's aesthetics? Use words or photos or whatever you like!


   4. Introduce us to each of your characters!

   First up we have Emmy. She's sixteen, never happy, and a Dreamer. A Dreamer is someone who can manipulate someone's mind, and they're also illegal and killed as soon as they're discovered. She thinks she's the last one, and that's why her parents went to such links to disconnect themselves from her. Emmy has an adopted brother Val who's a year younger.
   Here's a picture of her.

   Then we have Catus. Catus is insane. Catus speaks to imaginary people, voices in his head, and he can't get rid of nightmares. He has a tendency to stab people when he's upset, or when he's frustrated. He also does it by accident out of habit. Catus treats people like crap. Catus is married to Leela and has a son named Marcus.
   Here is a picture of him as well.

   5. How do you prefer to write?

   I definitely have an outline, but I research, plot, character sheet, I do a lot. Word wars, sprints, and crawls are extremely helpful. Also coffee. Lots and lots of coffee.

   6. What are you most looking forwards to about this novel?


   7. List three things about your novels settings

   It's very dark.
   It's very sandy.
   It's very occupied.

   8. What's your character's goal and who (or what) stands in the way?

   Emmy's goal is to live safe and take care of Val. Catus's is to stop having nightmares. The fact that she's a Dreamer stands in the way of hers, and the fact that his father killed all the Dreamers ;) stands in the way of Catus's.

   And I shall be skipping the last two...*coughs* Thank you for reading!

   What are you writing for Camp/during April? Did you read the first post I did on Red King in November? Does it sound better/worse/no different?R

Friday, March 10, 2017

Mess of Broken People

   The other day my sister and I were outside cleaning up wood pieces from our wood pile. It was right after I had the idea for Wanderlust, and so of course I was telling her about it. Right about the time I was squealing to her about Lillian the adorable two year old of Caden and Ayla, she stops me.
   "They've only been married for a year though..."
   I paused, then nodded and proceeded to tell her that Lillian was the reason they'd gotten married as soon as Ayla had turned eighteen. My sister was shocked.
   "You have to make her younger."
   I told her no.
   "They have to become Christians."
   I told her no again.
   "Well one of them has to be a Christian, one in the story."
   Still, I shook my head.
   "One of the people they meet on the way?"
   About that time, I gave a speech.
   A speech about broken people.

   People are sinners. I believe that we are inherently sinful, sinful even at conception, though a lot of people disagree. And there are so many people out there who're not saved, and are sinners. That's why I'm choosing to make Wanderlust a book with no Christian characters, mostly for this reason: I'm not going to add in a Christian character just because I'm a Christian.
   Some of my books like Red King I would consider Christian because God is prevalent in the book and theme. Wanderlust is not a Christian book because none of the characters are Christians. The theme however is God honoring.
   My theme for Wanderlust is that family isn't just blood.
   I've been around adopted kids and foster kids through my childhood. One of my best friend's family did foster care. I've seen some people adopt their foster kids even, but one day I thought of something.
   What about the ones who don't feel as if they belong in a family?
   That's what Ayla and Caden want: for the foster kids to feel like siblings, and even the ones outside such as Truman. Truman is twenty one, living on his own at college, and only related to them because they adopted his half sister. They all consider him a sibling though.

   The point is everyone has flaws.
   They do.
   Especially these characters.

   Caden and Ayla had their daughter before they got married. How did they fix this? They did. They did the right thing and got married. What I'm hoping to show through them is that both Christians and non-Christians mess up, and that's because they're human. Caden and Ayla will never become Christians, because the reality is so many people don't.

   Zai's mother was addicted to drugs, and he has scars on his back from where she hit him. That scarred him, but instead of letting it twist him, he instead found someone who'd been through a similar situation with her brother and loved her. Helena.
   Christians can love, and non-Christians can love as well. However, only Christians can love as Christ did. Non-Christians can mimic that, but not replicate it.

   Kanyon was a shoplifter until he was picked up by the authorities and taken to the system. Although he was released into the care of a couple, he still has tendencies to steal. Most of the time he resists, but not always.

   Although Truman and Saige have no legal or hugely moral flaws other than their sin nature, they both have different fathers, neither of which were married to their mother. Because of that, they weren't parented well, and Truman grew up without a father figure, a role model.

   This whole post is a small, mini rant. One of the biggest things I hate in the Christian media right now is shaming sin. Yes, sin should be a shameful thing, but especially with things such as teen moms and such, people tend to hate on them relentlessly when we should be loving them as Christ loved us.


    What are your views on the subject? Talk to me and let me know!

Friday, March 3, 2017

Camp NaNoWriMo Prep Week #1

  Ok, so April is Camp NaNoWriMo! WOO HOO GUYS THIS IS EXCITING! And for November, Cait did a NaNoWriMo Beautiful Books thing, and that kind of inspired this one. Each week this month, I'm going to talk about a different element of my NaNoWriMo novel, and if you read this and want to do it, steal the idea! It's not a tag persay, but still. I borrowed a few from her because she's a genius.

  Ok, so first up is the story idea. Here are the questions I'll be answering, feel free to change it up or add and subtract.

  1. What is the genre/setting/world like?
  2.What is the plot about?
  3. Who are the main character?
  4. Who are the supporting cast
  5. What are you most excited about in this story?
  6.Tell us about some of the food involved (because there has to be food)!
  7. Tell us about your OTP/Friendship in the story!
  8. What the theme or point to the story?
  9. Post some pictures from your storyboard!
  10. Do you have a cover for your book, or a main picture?

  What is the genre/setting/world like?

  This used to be a contemporary, but then it kind of turned into a slightly futuristic novel. The setting is in Italy, from the cities to the country side! This is something I'm going to have to research a lot in the...*coughs* month I have left. But here's the place I know they'll be going!

  The world is pretty much like ours, just a little futuristic to fit the plot. It'd be around 2044 or something. I have to work this out still, but it's not too too long.

  What is the plot about?

  Here's a bunch of aesthetic words.

  Italy//foster/adopted kids//young married couple//silent artist couple//guitar player destined to a single pringle//climby adorable eleven year old fluffy haired girl//older brother who wants custody but needs to finish college//Venice//German shepherd named Dopple//smol human
  Also pictures.

  Married half #1

  Married half #2
  Artist couple half #1
  Artist couple half #2
  Single Pringle
  Fluffy haired one
  College boi (which I have been informed means for this story it shall be used as another word for boy)
  Smol human

  Who is the main character?

    I have two! First up is Araya, or married half #2. She's nineteen, fluent in Italian, and the "mother", or oldest sister, either one. She's married to Caden, and for specific reasons they got married as soon as she turned eighteen. She loves traveling and doing stuff, contrast to Caden who wants to just take pictures of her. She also loves small children and water.

  Next is Helena. She's artist couple half #2, and quiet. She and Zai, arist couple half #1, are dating, and pretty much the most silent couple in history. Neither of them talk a lot, but she does the talking for both of them when needed. She sketches things out, contrast to Zai who either color pencil's it or watercolors it.

  Who are the supporting cast?

  We haaave

  Caden: a photographer who hates dogs and can't stand Dopple but Ayla insisted that Saige have a protector.

  Saige: fluffy haired tree and wall and step climber who adores Zai and has Dopple and can't pack one backpack to save her life. Also enjoy hot cocoa.

  Zai: silent artist that loves color, music, and Helena (of course) and hates smol children, also pushes Saige away.

  Single Pringle McKanyon AKA Kanyon: the guitarist who adores Saige and doesn't like his adopted brother Zai all that much and hates their music because it contains electric beats.

  College Boi AKA Truman: I'm so sorry I just love those two names. Ok Cole wants custody of Saige, but he has to finish college first, but he travels for school.

  Smol human AKA Lillian: the daughter of Caden and Ayla.

  What are you most excited about in this story?

  Right at this moment? The relationship between Saige and Truman! LOOK AT THEM THEIR PRECIOUS! But also the food.


     Tell us about some of the food involved!

  Still researching, but probably spaghetti and legit Italian pizza. Olives, pesto, toast, etc.

  Tell us about your OTP/Friendship in the story!

  I have two OTPs in this story. Zelena is Zai+Helena, and Ayden is Ayla+Caden.
  Ayden is married, and they have Lillian. They're the perfect couple because Ayla loves doing things and Caden can take her picture while doing said things. They love eating together and doing things together. The only problem is she's lenient and he's not.

  Zelena is too precious for this world. Both were in abusive families, and when they ran away, they got together. Most of the time he just holds her and they just sit and be in the moment, but they also draw each other drawing each other sometimes.

  What is the theme or point to this story?

  I hope to show that family doesn't mean blood, that they're not always related, and even those with horrible backgrounds can be happy.

  Post some pictures from your storyboard!

  Do you have a cover for your book, or a main picture?


     Thank you so much for reading! Feel free to steal, and post pictures if you do! (if pictures are your thing. ;) )

  Tell me about your plot! And main character! And genre! AND FLAIL PEOPLES FLAIL!


Friday, February 24, 2017

About My WWII Novel

  A year ago I would have shuddered at the thought of this word. It was a nightmare, a trap, a pit of information. I'd never fall into it, never ever ever. I'd stick to fantasy, sci-fi, dystopian, an occasional adventure...

  What is this word, you might wonder?
  Think of all the facts, the mistakes I could make, the *gasp* research I'd have to do! I couldn't ever write a historical. I wasn't a history major, what did I know?
  That isn't the point. *pets smaller Rachael*
  So today I'm going to tell you about my book that I'm writing with Sierra and Hannah! WOO HOOOOO.

  Ok, first up, Liza! (I have pictures...^-^)

  She's sixteen years old, and she's a spy in Germany! Very complicated story behind her being the one to go, one involving her dad's death, but she did go. She's posing as the daughter of an SS officer, one who's supposedly been going to school in America. Her job is super simple, she's supposed to A) not die, and B) gather what information she can about the SS and Nazi's.
  One small problem...
  She meets a guy. Two to be exact, Stefan who's a huuuge Nazi supporter, loves the HY, etc, and Will, someone who puts up with her because they're friends now.
  So with the first draft, this was the biggest problem. According to the emotions our characters were giving us, Will liked Liza, Liza liked Stefan, and Stefan liked his puppy. This was not going to work out, according to my brother. Somewhere a line had to connect.
  Stefan and Liza ended up connecting.
  They didn't, though. I mean, sure, they were cute, but their best scenes were the ones where they weren't allies? That didn't seem right to me.
  Draft two came around and PANIC ATTACK PEOPLES. WE PLOTTED THEIR CHARACTER AND SIERRA SAID "I'm not forcing them together if they don't mesh". I had to agree, forcing is never good.
  But my OTP...
  They got 1000% cuter. They did. THEY DID. THEY'RE SO CUTE. HERE HAVE A SNIPPET.

Screenshot (101).png
  Three things about this, a) her talent is legit tripping over flat ground. she has so much talent with this. b) Sierra informed me that while she was kidding, he wasn't, and c) shh yes I know this was a whole page.
  Now let us all go put flowers at Sierra's grave, for I have killed her for saying b).
  Also here's a picture of Stefan, enjoy.

  Shhh, yes this is from a group picture, but it’s my favorite that I’ve ever seen of him. *sniffs* If you squint it clears up. ^-^
  Ok, next up, Will! Willll, Will is so precious. He has eye trouble and wears glasses and loves food. He's an orphan, a fourth Jew (but he's hiding this as long as he can), and he is pretty in awe of the fact that since Liza is an SS officer's daughter, she gets coffee. Unfortunately, Hannah ahs informed me there is no changing the fact that he likes Liza, and that's pretty depressing.
  Here's a picture of him and his puppy he's adorable.

  My favorite part of this book is Stefan and Liza's relationship, I'll admit this. The thing is she was in this bombing where she was in a basement and the pipes busted, so the room flooded. Ever since then she's hated the dark, open spaces, and water. She legit tunes everything out to focus on one thing when she gets scared.
  Stefan's attachment to her can be told through these heartbreaking messages sent by Sierra. Go thank her.

  At first they were tottttally crushing on each other. To her he was solid, someone she trusted, and hawt. To him, she was interesting, unique, and set apart.
  And now they keep each other together. *wipes tear* She can hold his hand and not trail her fingers along a building trying to find something solid to focus on. *wipes many tears and tries to pretend like I'm not crying*
  So this is my WWII novel! Visit the other human's blogs, and Hannah just did a post on the book!

  Thank you for reading!

  Have you ever written a historical before? Which historical time period is your favorite? What genre do you stick with?