Sunday, November 12, 2017

Beautiful Books - "Snow White"

(Here I am, posting a day late again--sorry, everyone!)


So apparently I've been working on ECaPSSWR* for the last couple of months, but you'd hardly know it because I haven't properly introduced that messy little novella here!


*"Epically Confused and Possibly Schizophrenic Snow White Retelling." Not the final title. Ha.


But thankfully, Cait @ Paper Fury (who's publishing a book next year, hooray!) and Sky @ Further Up and Further In have Beautiful Books to help all writers everywhere introduce the world to their works in progress. Normally, the link up is called Beautiful People and focuses on specific characters, but from October to December it's all about the books themselves. Because it's NaNoWriMo season! (But you don't have to be participating in NaNo to do Beautiful Books.)


I'm not doing NaNo myself, so I'm something of a rebel in the writing community this month. I also missed October's BB post . . . So why not embrace that rebel identity, ignore the Beautiful Books rules entirely, and use last month's set of questions AND this month's set at the same time for double the fun? Right? Who's with me?


Okay. Fine. I wouldn't be that excited either. After all, nobody knows much of anything about this ECaPSSWR thing except that it involves Snow White. Well, I'm here to tell you that I don't know much more about it either. (Editing it this month is going to be so much fun. Heheh.)


Let's get on with it, shall we? Perhaps I'll gain some clarity along the way!




Beautiful Books October 2017



What inspired the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea?


I'd like to say something grandiose and romantic like, "I've had this story burning in my heart for ten years, and now I finally have the chance to tell it!" In reality, it's more like I want to enter the final Rooglewood contest, Five Poisoned Apples, and I've had this idea for about three months.

Describe what your novel is about!


Here's where I run and hide, because IT'S A LOVELY LITTLE MESS AND I HAVEN'T GOT A SYNOPSIS. But I'm a bold and noble writing warrior who never backs down from a challenge, so I shall try!

Ahem.

Skadi wasn't born a hunter. But when tragedy forces her away from her home clan, she falls in with the seven huntsmen and soon learns how to shoot a bow and skin a deer. Yet a piece of her never got the chance to say goodbye to her old life.

When a mirror from the past draws her back across the fjord years later, she follows. Along the way, the mirror's reflections tell stories. Stories spun into strange shapes that do strange things to Skadi's mind. Meanwhile, a legendary lindwyrm stalks the woods, with its hungry gaze set on her second home--the home of the seven huntsmen.

Skadi will never let them burn, but according to the mirror, that means she must stand in the path of the flames. Mirrors never lie, people say. That may be so, but this mirror doesn't reflect the whole truth.

A bit rough, but writing that blurb did help me sharpen my view of the central conflict!

What is your book's aesthetic? Use words or photos or whatever you like!


It just so happens, I have Pinterest boards for most of my stories. And they happen to all be private boards, because I'm not the greatest at pinning down my characters' faces (pun intended), and so I have probably a dozen different people for each character. Likewise for many different settings. Those boards are all fun little messes. Buuuut I'll let you all in to the Snow White board, even if it's still a work in progress, just because I'm nice like that! You can check it out HERE.

Introduce us to each of your characters!


Skadi (Snow White): She's a tough gal, rarely squeamish, the kind with dirt on her knuckles and callouses on her palms. She tends to shoulder more than she should bear. Underneath her armor of independence, however, is a heart quivering with the thought that she'll never be enough.

Torben (the Prince): He's the youngest huntsman and Skadi's best friend. In fact, he's the one who saved her from the aforementioned tragedy in the first place, back when they were kids. He's a good shot with the bow, and his lighthearted jabs keep Skadi's smile from hiding too long.

Hackett: Former huntsman and now the leader of the Weylyn clan. Walks with a limp. Gruff as a grizzly but intensely protective.

Bruni: Oldest active huntsman, second in age only to Hackett. Wise. Doesn't talk much.

Sigmund and Osmund: Twin huntsmen, constantly bickering. Os is large, with an impressive beard. Sig is average, with impressive eyebrows. Os has a knack for pointing out the negative. Sig likes to argue just for the sake of arguing.

Alfrigg: Another huntsman, but a rather rotund one. (Pretty much the Bombur of the group.) Happy. Likes simple things. Somehow manages to bring home just as much prey as anyone else, despite is ungainly size.

Kjell: Second youngest huntsman. Skinny as a twig and fast as a rabbit. Extremely extroverted; always asks for a pal when Hackett sends him hunting.

And then there's also Skadi's deceased father, mother, and stepmother. The stepmother still needs a name, and she's the one who's mentioned the most in the story. She could be best described as glacial.

How do you prepare to write? (Outline, research, stocking up on chocolate, howling, etc.?)


This time, I started with an undignified braindump in a fresh Word doc, in the form of bulleted lists and lots of crossed out words.

Then I discovered a way to outline that actually calculates the length of your story, thanks to author K.M. Weiland! I have this genius method to thank for finally staying under the contest's word limit! Even so, no outlining process is perfect, and my scattered thoughts resulted in a scattered first draft.


So let's commence that chocolate and howling.

What are you most looking forward to about this novel?


Fixing it!

List 3 things about your novel’s setting.


1. It's Nordic-inspired, but still fantasy, so I can make up cool trees, invent adorable creatures called burrowbirds, and say Groundsleep instead of winter or Groundwake instead of summer.
2. It's set in the same wide storyworld as The Brightest Thread! Just much further north, and decades earlier.
3. It's more primitive than any of my other fantasy settings, which is fun.

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

I think this is one part of the novella that's still a bit foggy. "What?" you exclaim. "Isn't the character's goal pretty much what THE WHOLE STORY HANGS ON?" Well yes. You're right. This might be why the story's having problems.

[Pinterest]
But I'm not entirely clueless.

First, Skadi wants to return to her home clan, Renshaw, to make peace with what she was forced to leave behind.

But then stuff happens--what she finds there isn't what she expected, and the mirror starts playing with her head--so then her goal changes to, "I have to defeat the lindwyrm before it decimates my other home."

Obviously it's the lindwyrm (a type of two-legged dragon) that stands in her way! Come on, guys. Did you really think I'd write a book without a dragon in it?

How does your protagonist change by the end of the novel?


She lets go of some of her pride and independence, realizing that it's okay to ask for help. It's okay to not do something alone. It's okay to need family.

What are your book’s themes? How do you want readers to feel when the story is over?


We tell ourselves a lot of lies, you and I. That's the heart of what this book is about. We too often swallow the lies other people say about us; but even worse, we adopt as truth the lies we spin about ourselves. And sometimes we can go for years without realizing it.

At the end of this still-untitled story, I hope readers have peeled back just one more layer of their hearts in order to confront their own lies and discover the truth.


Beautiful Books November 2017


Overall, how is your mental state, and how is your novel going?


My mental state is a cross between this:



And this:

What’s your first sentence (or paragraph)?


All stood still.

The birches, white branches stripped of most of their leaves, made not a rustle. No wind stirred. Even the hare in the middle of the clearing sat erect. Its long ears pointed straight up, and it was no longer chewing as it had a moment ago.

I held my breath. My whole body was strung taut as the bowstring I had pulled back against my jaw. The arrow's fletching tickled my cheek. I narrowed my gaze down the shaft and pointed the tip at the hare's furry white chest. One . . . two . . .

(Oops, that was three paragraphs!)

Who's your current favourite character in your novel?


Um, not Skadi, unfortunately. I think she will be once I've cleaned the manuscript up and given her personality something of a re-haul in the first half of the story!

Currently, I'd say Torben. He's not in the middle of the story much, mostly just the beginning and the end, but he's a fun contrast to Skadi's inner gloom. And he's kind of adorable and stubborn.

[Pinterest]

What do you love about your novel so far?


I love the Nordic setting because it's something new for me. I love the mirror's powers because I'm always up for story elements that play with the mind. (Plus mirrors are packed with so much imagery and interesting connotations.) I love having a motley family/crew of seven rough huntsmen, because it's a fun twist on the solitary huntsman of Snow White + the seven dwarves. I also love the  singularity of Skadi's journey. Whereas The Brightest Thread encompassed 100 years and a wide spread of characters, this story focuses on the journey of just one girl's heart.

Have you made any hilarious typos or other mistakes?


Probably some typos, but I haven't actually started editing yet, so I haven't found them. However, I did accidently forget to incorporate the poison apple element! WHICH IS KIND OF A BIG DEAL. So far, the only resemblance to the original fairytale comes in the form of huntsmen and an evil stepmother. I really wanted to add the apple in somehow, but throw a big twist into it. Good thing I've got some vague ideas for how to write that into the climax . . .

What is your favourite part to write: beginning, middle or end--and why?


In this case, I fell in and out of love during all three stages! Overall, I would say my favorite part to write is whatever part clicks right away. You get this feeling that you're on the right track, building off a decent foundation, heading in the right direction. Contrary to my complaining, I did have some of those moments. Now it's my job to go back, find them, and use them as a guide to hammer the rest of the novella into shape.

What are your writing habits? Is there a specific snack you eat? Do you listen to music? What time of day do you write best? Feel free to show us a picture of your writing space!


Snack? Music? Time of day? WRITING SPACE? What are these luxuries? I starve in silence at midnight in the corner of my dungeon!

I kid, I kid. In all honesty, I've been writing on the weekends once I catch up on homework. So the time of day is never ever set in stone. I will clarify that I write best when I don't have other things on my to-do list hanging over my head, and I prefer an earlier start over later.

I don't eat much while writing, although all the Halloween candy sitting around the house makes for good brain food. Tea is my usual choice, though! As for music, lately it's been the soundtrack from How to Train Your Dragon and Two Steps from Hell's latest album, Unleashed.

You don't want to see a picture of my writing space. It's a disaster.

How private are you about your novel while you’re writing? Do you need a cheer squad or do you work alone (like, ahem, Batman)?


Thus far, I've pretty much been pulling a Batman, which is weird for me. But now I'm finally, actually talking about this novella with you! Hooray! It kind of makes it feel more like a "real" writing project now.

[Pinterest]

What keeps you writing even when it’s hard?


A deadline. That sounds woefully uninspiring, but I LOVE the satisfaction of completing something on time! For this story, my hard deadline is December 31st--that's the contest rule. But my personal soft deadline is more like December 1st. I'd love to blaze through the editing process during the remainder of November, but we shall see!

Also lots of prayer. My family and I have been praying that I would find ways to balance my college schedule with writing and life and all those other good things. And so far, though it hasn't been easy, I've been surprised at how much writing can be packed into one or two days a week! The bursts of speed are definitely an answer to prayer.

What are your top 3 pieces of writing advice?


Top three pieces of writing advice ever? That's tough! Let's narrow this down to the top three pieces of writing advice I've been learning from this particular project.

1. Try new things, and don't be alarmed when you fumble around with them the first time or two. They're new. You haven't written this before. Keep at it, and you'll get better.

2. They always say you should compete with yourself and no one else--keep improving on your own performance. There's a lot of truth to that, I agree, but I've found that comparing this wet, wobbly-kneed, barely standing novella with the full-fledged novel that I just wrote (The Brightest Thread) isn't helping. Rather, I have to keep reminding myself to play. Have fun. Writing is oftentimes hard, but if you're not having fun overall, there's something wrong. Deadline or no deadline, you need to relax enough to enjoy the process!

3. With every story you pen, put a little piece of yourself into it somehow, and let that shadow of you struggle and fail and win inside the confines of that story. Be real on the page, even if it makes you wince at the dark corners you try to forget you have. There's light to be had there too.

Thanks for sticking around! That was a double-whammy. Hopefully it makes up for posting late. ;) How many of you are fellow Five Poisoned Apples entrants? Any tips for liking your own protagonist?

31 comments :

  1. Am I supposed to be suspicious of Hackett because his name doesn't go with the others'?

    I love the range of personalities you have going on among the "dwarves", and Skadi actually sounds like a pretty decent sort of character in spite of all your worries.

    https://ofdreamsandswords.wordpress.com

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    1. Haha, no, he's nothing more than he appears to be! I may have to re-evaluate his name, though, if it causes suspicion. ;)

      Thank you! I certainly hope so... I've been reading over the first draft today, and so far she's not as bad as I thought. :) Thanks for the encouragement, Sophia!

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  2. *screams* I NEED THIS. THIS. NEEDS. TO BE PUBLISHED IN FIVE POISONED APPLES!!!! *flails*

    And oh my word, burrowbirds just sound like THE CUTEST THING EVER!! *heart-eyes*

    I'm rooting so hard for you and your story, Tracey! <3 <3

    ~Liv
    livkfisher.blogspot.com

    P.S. Tips for liking your own protagonist? I'm thinkin' a list. There was one main character I worked with and I JUST COULDN'T RELATE TO HER. So I made up a list of:

    • Her favorite places
    • Past mistakes she made + what she learned from them
    • Her favorite flower
    • Her favorite thing to learn about
    • What she dreams about at night
    • Her favorite celebratory meal
    • A small rundown of her bucket list
    • Her talents
    • The sort of guy (personality, looks, etc.) she's attracted to

    This was basically a copycat of the June 2017 edition of Beautiful People, though. So I cheated. But it helped a lot. XD

    I wish you all the best on your story! :)

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    1. LIV, YOU PRECIOUS HUMAN BEAN. <3333

      I love the burrowbirds too! I need to work them in a few more times when I edit. ;)

      Thank you so muuuuuch! I can't even with you!

      P.S. *gasp* That's a great list idea, cheating or not! I'm going to have to use that. Maybe personality holes are the reason we don't click with some characters right away... *lightbulb*

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  3. I so love what you know about your story so far!!! The mirror twist is really great :) I hope you win! And yay for tea and sountracks :D

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    1. Awww, thank you soooo much, Keturah! Absolutely, three cheers for tea and soundtracks--the best writer fuel. ;D

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  4. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR A POST LIKE THIS. I'll shamefully admit that I have been dyyyyyying to know what your Snow White story was about. Not knowing anything was killing me. XD So when I saw this post I was just like YESSS. GIMME.

    And oh my gracious good. THIS LOOKS EPIC. :O :O :O Um, excuse me, but did you just throw together that synopsis on the fly? Because I love it as is! I was just gobbling up every word. First of all, I love the twist that it's seven HUNTSMAN instead of dwarves, and how you basically made the whole thing focused on the huntsman aspect of the story. What a unique idea! AND THE MIRROR. THE MIRRORRRR. I wanted to squeal when I read about it. I'm...kind of obsessed with mirrors in fiction? It's weird, I know! But there are sooo many fun things that can be done with mirrors! (Thus me sticking Lystraea in a mirror in Burning Thorns, the temptation was too strong. XD) And I have like five different story ideas involving mirrors. Annnd, my current NaNo project involves magic mirrors a smidge. So yeah, I think I have a problem. o.o But needless to say, I WAS SO EXCITED TO READ ABOUT YOUR MIRROR IDEA. LIKE ACK. A mirror that messes with a person's mind? YES PLEASE!!!

    That is the FUNNEST thing that it's inspired by a primitive Nordic world but still fantasy. TOO AWESOME! And I'm just sitting here drooling over your pinterest board. It's so aesthetically pleasing. <3 I am in awe at your world building skills. From this post alone it feels so rich, with all the creatures and names for things and character names. YOU ARE A MASTER WORLD BUILDER. Also...it's set in the same world as TBT???????? THIS MAKES ME SO HAPPY! *FLAAAILS*

    Also also DRAGONNNNN!!!!!! :D :D :D

    I think I'm already in love with your cast. o.o They sound like such a diverse crew, and I love it! I know you said you're not wild about Skadi, but just from your descriptions of her she sounds so deep. I am sure after edits she will be amazing. Torben sounds absolutely precious. ^_^ And all the other guys just seem so fun. I love how Hackett is gruff but protective. I always love those types of characters! The gruff fatherly types. They're awesome! And you've got TWINS and and a Bombur-like fellow and an extrovert and just YES. I love this crew! :D

    "I starve in silence at midnight in the corner of my dungeon!" <---I'm laughing so hard! Tracey. XD You poor thing. I don't know how you do it! But I think it is the most beautiful thing how you and your family pray for your writing and how you've managed to find time even amidst the craziness. God is good! <3

    Okay, so our braintwinsiness has struck again! Because I have my Beautiful Books post ready to go up tomorrow and...my first pieces of advice for the last question is "don't be afraid to try new things". XD We are so brain twins! I LOVE IT. But EEP. ALL your advice was so encouraging and spot on! You're so, SO right that we shouldn't compare our first drafts to our polished ones. I needed to hear that amidst writing a crazy messy NaNo story!

    Okay, I need to end this monster comment one day. XD But I could just go on and on because THIS STORYYYYYY. IT SOUNDS SO AMAZING! I do hope editing will go smoothly and wonderfully for you! <3333

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    1. CHRISTINE, YOU SWEET PERSON! Your comment was just the boost I needed to get excited about diving into editing today! *hugs forever*

      Erm, yes...I did throw that together on the fly. Whether the novella actually MATCHES the blurb is another issue entirely. XD But I'm so glad you liked it!
      The huntsman concept has always been one of the more intriguing parts of the story for me! Like--how is he not a bigger part of the original?! The conflicting loyalties make him exceedingly interesting. Buuut now that I've played around with all the fairy tale elements for myself, the dynamics are quite different. Still super fun, though! And yes, the mirror! Gah, that mirror! (Haha, Lystraea popped into my mind before you even mentioned her. Love our braintwinning!) *gasp* Did you just say there are magic mirrors on the Nether Isle? :O :O :O Now I love the sound of it even MORE!

      It's so fun writing about a culture that's a bit different than the typical medieval European one! Eeep, thank you again! You're such an encouragement. ^__^ Worldbuilding is one of my favorite things ever.

      DRAGON!!!

      They are a fun bunch! I just wish there was room to include them a bit more often. Definitely one of the things I need to brush up in editing, because it's a fairly large cast to introduce in a short span of time. Heehee, I think you'd like Torben. ;) And gruff fatherly types tug at my heartstrings EVERY. TIME.

      MY DRAGON LOCKED ME UP, OKAY. XD It's not as bad as it may sound, though! It just takes some flexibility. Truth be told, I read through the first half of the novella today to take editing notes, and it's not AS bad as I expected. So those grouchy feelings might stem from my disjointed writing schedule--not having a good, consistent handle on the story, you know? Yes, God is amazing! <3

      A Christine Beautiful Books post--whoop, whoop! I already devoured it and will be commenting ASAP. Again, hooray for being brain twins! ;D It's kind of crazy how simple advice like that is, yet how often we ourselves need reminding.

      Your monster comment was all warm and fuzzy and cheered me up, so thank yoooouuuu! <333 I hope your third week of Nano is spectacular!

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  5. Your story sounds so amazing! I love the sample you shared!

    Madeline Joy
    towerofjoy.blogspot.com

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    2. Awww, thanks so much, Madeline!!! :D (If you were wondering, I deleted my original reply because I mixed you up with another Madeline. So sorry!)

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  6. This is really cool! I love your aesthetics!! And the story world is amazing! #squee

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    1. THANKS, SARAH! <3 Aesthetic-y stuff isn't my strongest suit, but it's sooo fun to play around with. ;)

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  7. Hey, would ya look at that??? My Rooglewood story has seven Huntresses and a male Snow White figure who comes to stay with them!! I SEE A SIMILARITY, HOW 'BOUT YOU???

    Great minds think alike. xD

    Tracey, this story. Sounds. Amazing. I needz it!!! O.o <3

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    1. No way! That sounds SO FUN! Seven huntresses--sounds like serious business. o.o I can only imagine what the male Snow might feel like surrounded by them!

      Thanks so much, Lila! I hope your Rooglewood story goes super duper well! :D

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  8. I like how you've merged the huntsmen with the dwarfs and even made one of them the prince! It's also cool how you've made it a part of The Brightest Thread's story world. Links like that are always neat.

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    1. Thank you! There are just so many characters running around the original fairy tale, that my brain decided it would be simpler to combine some of them. XD Oh goodness, I looove connections like that. Thanks again, Blue! <3

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  9. This story sounds really fun to write! Best wishes on the contest!

    I'm struggling with balance this year too what with a way more consistent job than I have in the past, but I'm managing it. You can do it too!

    I did Beautiful People too!: http://storitorigrace.blogspot.com/2017/11/beautiful-books-2017-hows-writing-going.html

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    1. Thank you, Tori! Despite some hiccups, it has been fun so far. :)

      YES, WE CAN CONQUER IT! It takes some adjusting, but it's amazing how much we're capable of doing when we get serious about prioritizing. You've got this!

      Eek, yes, I saw that post! Still need to go over and finish reading it!

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  10. This sounds so good, Tracey! The settings and the idea of Seven Huntsmen and one of them being a Prince. I think you have a huge chance of winning this thing!

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    1. Wow, thank you! <3 By the way, I've been WANTING to keep reading your novella--so sorry for the delay! I hope to get to it as soon as homework slows down.

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  11. IT SOUNDS NORDIC AND AMAZING AND I WAAAAAAAAAAANT!!!! ALSKDJFLSKDJFLKJ
    Ahem.
    That is all. XD

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    1. *flails* Celti, you're the sweetest!!! You brought such a smile to my face this morning! ^___^

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  12. "I starve in silence at midnight" should be the title of a poem, painting, SOMETHING. XD Best of luck with your contest entry in progress! May the journey be full of delights.

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    1. Bahaha, it really could be! I can't decide if that would be beautifully poetic or hilariously melodramatic. XD

      Thanks so much! I'm glad you stopped by.

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  13. This sounds like such a fun story, Tracey! Seven huntsmen? So COOL! I like that twist a lot. AND A NORDIC WORLD. This is FANTASTIC.

    Tips for liking your own protagonist... well, my favorite is to find something in her personality that you really appreciate and/or admire and build on that 'connection' with her/him. For example... hmmm, oh, okay, so in my B&B/POTO retelling last year, the FMC is an extrovert (probably ENFP or ENFJ). Writing her was very much something new for me, since I usually write thoughtful introverted FMCs. I liked her right off, but for a while it was a bit hard for me to 'figure her out' and what made her tick... until I realized that one of her personality traits was that she's a nearly incurable optimist who rarely gives up hope. Since I'm definitely not a person who hopes and hopes against hope (I'm a realist) that was something I could appreciate about her... and how that was one of the main traits to change the whole dynamic of the story.

    *grins* Basically, in the end, it usually comes back to emotions. Neither the character nor the author has to be an emotional /person/, but asking 'what emotions/traits does the protagonist have that you can really love, or empathize/sympathize with' often helps fill in the gaps... and bring the fun back. :)

    BEST WISHES, TRACEY! (And I really hope your life eases up a little soon so you can write more!)

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    1. EEEEP, THANK YOU!!! You're making me excited all over again!

      My protagonists tend to be those thoughtful introverts too. ^_^ But writing about the fairly extroverted Luci last year was a fun stretch!

      That's spectacular advice! Hmm...something I like/admire in Skadi is that she doesn't care what people think about her. Well, her weakness is that she still feels obligated to LOOK AFTER people, which seems a bit paradoxical--but I think that altruism is as much for her own peace of mind as for their wellbeing. So OVERALL, she doesn't rightly care about others' opinions. (And my own people-pleasing tendencies could be balanced by a bit more of Skadi's personality. ;) )

      I'll have to give that some more thought yet. Thanks so much, girl! You're the best! *hugs*

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  14. The name Skadi is now like my favourite ever name. It's so pretty! Also, I'm not doing the Rooglewood contest, because I, er, don't really like Snow White, but I've loved hearing about everyone's different twists and takes on the same story! It's really cool!! And a magic mirror??? Cool! I love magic mirrors! :D good luck with the editing!

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    1. Aww, thank you! (Skadi is actually the name of a Norse goddess associated with bowhunting and winter and such. Thank you, Google! XD) I totally get that--Snow White is actually not my favorite fairy tale either. But it's been fun to play with it regardless.

      Thanks so much, Chelsea! Hope you have a fantastic November! :D

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  15. Oh. My. Stars.
    Your story looks...
    *squeals*
    Superfantacular!

    Seriously if you are in need of a beta reader, I would love to read this for you :D

    Your Nordic setting sounds so interesting. I did a Celtic setting myself, and instead of a lyndwyrm (which I love the idea of, by the way, I love dragons!) I did wights.

    Your twin huntsmen remind me of my twin dwarfs, being polar opposites, one is grumpy and the other is always talking, often arguing... great minds think alike, eh ;)

    I had a hard time liking my Snow White at first until someone finally told me what my problem was. She was too passive! So I gave her a swift kick to the seat of her pants- well, dress- and now I like her again. I still like my prince more, but there was no helping that :P

    Good luck editing your story!

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  16. AAAAAAAHHHHHH THIS SOUNDS AMAZING!!!! *flails forever* I DO so hope you win! I would LOVE to read this marvelous-sounding story! <333

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