Book Review – The Strange

Now, by this time you know how I feel about this series. I’ve reviewed both The Babylon Eye and The Real, and I’ve been waiting for this book. The wait has paid off. You know that feeling when the first book in a series is ALL CAPS FANTASTIC, but the second is just meh and […]

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What’s Up With Your Writing?

Cross-country move aside, this has been at the top of the FAQ pile in my life lately. So let’s talk about if and what I’ve been writing today. The Physician’s Apprentice is in the later stages of production. It had initially been scheduled for release somewhere around September, but life happens, and it’s been delayed […]

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My Novel Planning Journey

It’s Preptober! I’m not participating in Nanowrimo, but I figured this post was long overdue anyway and could be relevant to those of you preparing for Nano. If you’re wondering about my previous Nanowrimo experience, I wrote a little piece on the Sophie Melissa Blog. She also asked some other authors for their ideas and […]

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Book Review – Hard in Hightown

My little obsession with Dragon Age and the world of Thedas has never been a secret, nor has my adoration for the roguish dwarf, Varric. Maybe I love him the most because Varric and I are both storytellers, super loyal, and empaths. It’s likely just the chest hair though. 😛 If you’ve ever played Dragon […]

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Travel in Writing

Quick fact – the average horse and the average person travel about the same distance per day. As in, giving your hero a horse may not actually bring them to the epic battle faster than they’d have gotten there on foot. No, I didn’t make that up. Hollywood, gaming houses, and presses tell us otherwise, […]

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Let’s Write Joy

If you’re here for the first time, I’ve been writing a series of posts on the body language of various emotions, so authors have a quick reference when they get stuck writing diverse characters. It’s so easy to fall into the same old repetitive action tags. I can’t tell you how many times I used […]

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Let’s Write Fear

From a fright when the spider lands on your arm, to being scared of the weird guy on the blind date, to full-blown terror when a dragon sticks its head out of the cave and you left your sword at home, fear is one of the most complex emotions that we’ve all had to deal […]

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Book Talk – The Physician’s Apprentice

I’ve never done a post discussing what this book is actually about, and I honestly don’t know how that’s happened. So, considering I’ve completed the final round of edits and the novel is out of my hands again (WHOOOOOHOOOOO) I thought I’d break down the story for you. I’m not particularly skilled when it comes […]

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Let’s Write Excitement and Nerves

Welcome to part three of the Writing Emotions series! You can check out the others here, and come back in two weeks for the next part. Today we’re chatting about nervousness and excitement. Since these amount to the same thing in terms of body language, I figured I’d group them. Of course, there are some […]

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Let’s Write Sadness

Picking up from where we left off, we’re talking about sadness or grief today. The topic was suggested to me by someone in the writing group I belong to on Facebook. Love was also suggested and I’ll definitely delve into that one, but I think it might need to be spread over more than one […]

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Let’s Write Anger

Friends. Writing is difficult. Especially emotions, which are the slightest bit important to make your characters come alive. At first, you really try to have your cast do interesting things, show interesting body language and have interesting expressions. But then, you slip into that easy repetition. He gave a look. She nodded. They shrugged. Or […]

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Blog News

It’s been a hot minute, I know. I fully intended to blog at you last week, but then the plague struck again. I tell you, we’ve been sick at least once a month since we arrived in Canada, lucky us. More on this in another post, though. I used the time away from the blog […]

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Just Publish it Already

We’re back to reality today, after a week-long break (if it can be called that, considering we were so sick we could barely move). Kayla’s been dropped off at school, which means it’s back to work for me too after a mini-break from writing. Well, writing The Physician’s Apprentice anyway – I’ve been sporadically working […]

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Book Review – Ready Player One

Not to give away my thoughts on the novel in the opening sentence of the blog post or anything, but wow, what a read this was. Having said that, I didn’t understand the hype around this novel until I’d read over a hundred pages. Before we get to that, though, a quick summary of the […]

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The Writer’s Supply Network

Hang around writer’s forums long enough and you’ll soon see that there are many fake service providers out there. People who claim they’ll help you polish your manuscript before the world sees it, but then disappear with your cash. And since so many people are self-publishing these days, the demand for indie service providers is […]

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Inadequate

You know what I mean. That so-out-of-my-depth feeling that hits us all from time to time. Like you’ve brought a football to a ping pong match and you’re going to smash your paddle to smithereens with your first serve. (Where are these sports metaphors even coming from?) Lately, this has been my reality. You’ve seen the trend in […]

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December/January Writing Update

The last few weeks of my life have been intense. Not in the way you’d probably picture intense, because most of my time was spent in front of the screen, typing and reading aloud what I’ve typed, over and over and over. To my neighbour on the left, despite the number of times you’ve seen me […]

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Book Review – Turtles all the way Down

It’s been a while since I wrote one of these. 🙂 If you know me at all, you know that I’m a huge fan of John Green. He inspires me in many ways, because he manages to be a thoughtful and giving human being, despite living with a crippling mental illness. I’ve been a nerdfighter for a […]

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Blank

Today is one of those days where blank pages intimidate me, but somehow, no matter how fervently my fingers slam against the keyboard, the words just aren’t up to standard. These are also the days where everything is more interesting than the screen, from the single leaf that managed to escape being covered with snow to […]

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Neekerbreekers

I love Tolkien. I’ve loved his work since I first discovered his stories when I was about fourteen. After that first time I broke the spine of The Fellowship of the Ring, I’ve read LOTR every year (sometimes more than once a year) until around 2013 when Kayla was born. Which reminds me, you know. […]

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To Say or Not to Say

So you’re a writer. Welcome to the club, please pick your t-shirt from the pile and have a seat. You’ve probably been around the interwebs and have no doubt found an article or two on the topic of said. You know, dialogue tags. There are two firm groups of thought here. Okay, okay – two […]

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August Writing Update

It’s already September, I know. I’ve had a lot on my mind lately. 🙂 I certainly didn’t think I’d be doing this with all the insanity going on in my life right now, but I’m happy to report that I’ve been writing something amid the chaos! My good friend Tallulah and I just finished a […]

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Three Steps Towards Deep Point of View

I’m by no means an expert on the topic, just a noob who’s learned a thing or two from writers much more experienced than I, willing to share their knowledge. These are three little things any writer could use to hone their craft – some so obvious, it’s blinding. Who felt like an idiot after […]

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Writing Update

You were supposed to see this post at the end of July, I know. Apologies. I’m more scatterbrained than usual lately and I forgot. But better late than never, right? The writing has been going exceptionally well. After The Great Word Draught of 2017, I never imagined I’d be writing so much, especially now that The […]

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So You’re a Beta Reader

This post, born in the darkest corners of my mind, is probably a direct result of my own novel being in the hands of a group of beta readers. Right now, I’m in that I-can’t-write-at-all-and-I-totally-suck-phase. Let’s talk about giving good crit. As if I’m the expert here. Bah. But, having been on the receiving end […]

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Write by the Rules

I read an article this morning about why you should write romance novels only in third person point of view. In the past few weeks, a few people made comments on the writer’s groups I belong to about writing in a certain point of view and being criticised for their choice. I gag a little in […]

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My Writing Process

Writing about writing is tricky. People will often try to sell their way as the only way, but no art is as black and white as that. I’m not talking about the rules of grammar and style, I’ve seen firsthand how those will make or break a novel. Leave out the rules, and your story […]

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Writing, as Taught by Kids’ TV Shows

A year or so ago, I read a writing exercise idea on a blog that changed the way I view watching TV. The blogger in question would make notes of, then dissect the episode she was watching. She’d figure out which plot points worked, which didn’t, where the dialogue fell flat, where it rocked, and […]

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Noob Writers Unite

I had a conversation about writing with my cousin, as we often do. Afterwards, I kept thinking how great it would have been if I’d known which mistakes to avoid when I just started writing. Yes, I could have googled something stupid, like how to write a novel. Today, the ‘duh’ is weighty enough to […]

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Help a Blogger Out

Here’s an interesting turn of events. I don’t know what to blog about. At first, I couldn’t understand what the hell this caused this sluggishness. Sure, blogging is difficult sometimes. I’ve been doing this for six years and I know ideas dry up at some point. That’s why the blog changed its direction even before […]

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Uninspired

Some days, it’s difficult to get inspired. I’m having one of those days. I talked about this problem on Friday too, so you’ll know about my predicament if you’ve been around the blog. The recap version? Today, I have no idea what to blog about and I don’t have the drive to put in any real effort. […]

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How’s the Writing Going?

Everything is quiet again. Back to normal. It’s been a month since our visitors left (I can’t even) and, with the vacation posts out of the way, I can’t ignore the elephant in the room anymore. Too many people have been asking.

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Revising x 3 (Mini Q&A)

At this stage, I’m unable to think straight, but I’ve had some questions from friends and family and I want to answer them. Question 1 – How’s it going, Yolandie? *nervous laughter* Added to the fact that I’m revising like a madwoman, it’s been an icky week on the sleep scale. AKA, I’m not getting […]

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Book Review – Raven Kin

It’s a well-known fact (at least if you’ve hung around the blog) that I really admire my editor, Nerine Dorman. She’s taught me so much about writing that I barely recognise my old work these days, and I’m hopefully still improving. A while back, I grabbed a compilation four of her stories on Amazon. No, […]

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A Quick Update

Nothing feels real in my life anymore until I share it here. ◄ That’s healthy. 😛 I had some awesome news this week and I want to share it with you. You know, so it becomes real. I belong to a writer’s group and they’re releasing an anthology later this year. Submissions opened November 2016, […]

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Book Review- The Real

The truth is, I’m not good at writing reviews. Not at all. It’s difficult to explain why you love something without including spoilers, nerve-wracking to find the good points in something meh, and I don’t even want to go into didn’t-like territory. This book though, speaks for itself. It made me feel things. I held […]

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Stuff for Writers

When you tell people you’re writing a novel, they’ll probably react in one of three ways. 1) You’re insane. 2) Ooh, that’s cool! 3) You know, I’ve always wanted to write a novel (this, by the way, is said with the greatest frequency). This post is for everyone in the third group. I’ve been following […]

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Hello February

Wel, lookie here. A brand new month. I’ve been gone for a week, I know. A mini-plague descended on my house and we’ve been recovering. Meanwhile, I’ve also been up to my eyebrows in edits. Even sick, obsessive nature won’t let me go. It’s a blessing and a curse. This is going to be a […]

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Soldier Through It

The thing is, it’s tough sometimes. Last year was a wild one, and not always in the good sense. Everybody I know struggled. We struggled. And I don’t just mean with little stuff, though there was some of that. People were sick, some died, some lost or quit their jobs, families split up and hearts […]

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Book Review – The Babylon Eye

When I heard about this book, I knew I had to read it, because the story seemed so unique. So, when I was sent a copy to review, I was pretty much over the moon. Also a little worried, because I so hate giving bad reviews. I’m one of those people who’ll praise the things […]

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Behind the Scenes

Hi there, folks! I’m not doing the Story Cube thing today, because I have some admin to share with you. Nothing serious! But some stuff has been going on behind the scenes, and I want to fill you in. Somewhere in the last few months, I mentioned on Facebook, Twitter and Google + that I’ve […]

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Late!

Hello there, folks. I’m honestly just popping in to say that today’s post will be delayed. I’m sorry about this, the past few days have gotten away from me. I’ll resume posting on Wednesday. Have a good one! Yolandie

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The Threes

My kid will turn three in under a week, can you believe it? I struggle to. Kayla is a happy, sweet little person. She loves to cuddle and kiss and say ‘I love you, Mama’, which obviously melts my heart. She and I have a blast together, and that’s a good thing, considering she’s home […]

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To Be Proud

When I first started writing, I had no idea what I was doing. I still don’t, but I’m growing. If there’s one thing in life I hate, it’s stagnating. I’ve mentioned this before. Where writing is concerned, I really think I have grown and I try to learn more with every word squeezed out through […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 10

Hi there! I’m happy to report that I’ve broken the 10,000 word mark for this week. Coming up for air to type this post feels strange, as if I’m going to be struck by lightning for doing anything other than work on my book. This isn’t even really coming up for air, because I’M STILL […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 9

Hello there. You may have noticed that things look a little different here. This is due to a bout of website-altering creativity that took me by surprise during the week. I was never completely satisfied with the way things looked on the website, but I’m glad to report that I feel a lot better about […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 8

Hello there. So, this is week 8 of the #storycubechallenge. Once again, I left my story to the last possible moment. I don’t know why I do this to myself, but in my defence, it was a crazy week with a sick 2-year old. At least I wrote something. I’m also working on a short […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 7

Hello there, friends! So, this is week 7 of the #storycubechallenge already. This week, I actually wrote something. Yeehaw for schedules. The cubes for this story certainly made more sense to me than those ones did last week. 😛 If you’re new to this, here’s where it all started. I also have a Pinterest board […]

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NaNo – Here we go again

Yes, indeedy. It’s almost that time again. Last year, my Nanowrimo experience wasn’t so great (I seem to have misplaced the post where I updated you on that). To be fair, I had just gone through a bunch of stuff, including finding a new editor and living through one of the lowest points since moving […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 5

You’re not going to believe this. This week, I actually wrote the story cube story on Monday. No, not so late last night that I couldn’t focus on the keyboard anymore, on MONDAY. What’s happening? I feel like I don’t know myself anymore. I don’t want to jinx everything by saying that writing all of […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 4

Hello there. It’s that time of the week again! I seriously hope someone out there is doing this challenge with me, because I don’t have anyone to complain to. 😛 It’s challenging, that’s for sure. But it’s also kind of fun. It is getting easier to get the story going, once I have a basic […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 3

Why do weeks move so quickly when you’re supposed to be writing for a story challenge you created yourself? I find myself doing anything BUT working on the cubes, until the night before. I really need to time manage better and procrastinate less. In the words of my friend Charlie Brown. Good. Grief. Before I […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 2

Well, that was more interesting than I anticipated… Here we are in week two of the story cube challenge. I’ll just say that this thing lived up to it’s name. Making a story out of pictures was challenging, but heck, I did it! Woot woot! Did you? Please link me to your story, I’d love […]

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Story Cube Challenge – Week 1

This year for my birthday, I wanted something different. When Jan spotted Rory’s Story Cubes on Amazon, I was immediately sold. You think I’m mad, don’t you? What would a 31-year-old mom want with story cubes? Well, inspiration. I find, as a writer, that the writing prompts online are few and far between, and the […]

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Writing and Music

I find it kind of weird that the question I’m asked most often about writing is what I listen to when I write. Sure, this question leads to a variety of other questions, but a lot of the time, conversations about writing are started with this one. What do I listen to when I write? […]

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Writing Process

One of the things I get asked most often is what my writing process is like. How do I work? How do I outline? How do I order my thoughts? Friend, it goes about like this : I’m on my fourth novel now. I’ve written so much in the past five or so years that […]

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Approach With Caution…

You’re wondering where I am. I can hear you think it like a shout off a mountaintop. 🙂 This image below about sums it up. In my world, ‘lunch’ can be replaced by coffee. Because, you know, coffee has replaced blood in my veins.

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Sorry

Yes, I’ve been MIA this week. Lemme tell you something. Writer Yolandie is obsessive to a fault. I’ve been doing little else than write or work on stuff related to my novel (except for this fanfic that pulled me off course for a moment) and I’m more than a little anxious to get back to […]

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Write What You Know…

I’ve been following a lot of writing coaches, editors and authors via social media and blogs lately, and I’ve learned a TON about writing. The things to avoid, to embrace and habits to form to become a better writer have really impacted me. It also scares me. When I sit down to write now, I’m […]

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It’s Chaotic

First of all, I’d like to thank everyone for their condolences and beautiful words concerning my grandmother. If you missed it, my gran passed away last week. It wasn’t a surprise, because she was sick for a long time before she passed. It still hurts though. I wrote a tribute to my grandma here. Since […]

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Why I Hate Love Triangles in Fiction

It seems that storytellers have always had a fascination with adding romantic connections between various characters in their stories. Often, these occur at the same time, making love triangles or other related shapes. In soap operas, these can look like love explosions, because there is apparently so much of it to go around. 😛 In […]

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Current Chaos – The Editing Game

So, it’s finally happened. I got the notes back from my editor a while ago and since then, only writing has been on my mind. Let me first fill you in. I went through a bit of a bad patch last year with an editor. Not because of bad critique, but because of the complete […]

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Confessions of a Writing Addict

I’m obsessive. Very, very obsessive. It’s just the way I’m wired. If you’ve read this blog for a while, you’ll probably recall other instances where I’ve admitted to this flaw in my personality. Maybe it isn’t always a flaw, but still. Just the other day, I told you that my new novel is done. I […]

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