brittni in ink

a writer's blog

Tag: post-apocalyptic

turn out well

It’s been a full week of events, editing, and interviews!

Friday, I was happy to be a part of the “Amazing Adventures in Strange Lands” reading at Biblioasis. I got to meet Elly Blake, a best-selling YA author who also happens to be super nice! Christian Laforet and Ben Van Dongen, the superstar organizers of the event, also read! I always enjoy the human tension in Christian’s short stories, and Ben read one of my favourite parts of his cyberpunk novella, The Thinking Machine. The event was MC’d by Vanessa Shields, who added a lot of insight and humor to the evening. The Q and A following the readings involved the audience and brought up some interesting questions for all of us readers to speak to. All around a great event!

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Photo by Janine Marley

At the event, I met a couple of people who were there to record the readings for their podcast, All Write in Sin City.  They invited me out for an interview! Yesterday, we recorded some segments, also featuring Elly Blake and Alexander Zelenyj! It was a bizarre experience, in that I’m used to being on the other side of table. I co-hosted Hardcover: A Literary Podcast for two years, so answering questions instead of asking them was a mind-twister for sure! I enjoyed hearing Elly and Alex’s insights on writing and fiction, and was impressed by Sarah and Irene’s interview skills – Not an easy thing to compile a bunch of information and research into conversational questions!

And today is the day (I hope!) where I finally finish my final draft of my work in progress. Editing this book has been a nourishing creative experience. Taking my rough ideas and smoothing them out brings a sense of satisfaction and wholeness that I didn’t feel with my first book. So it’s new and exciting and I’m hopeful that it’ll turn out well.

 

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time to look at books

Coming up this Friday, I’m super excited to be part of the Amazing Adventures in Strange Lands reading at Biblioasis. It’s going to be a fun night of readings by local genre fiction authors, with some time to look at books and talk to the readers afterward! Hope you can make it out!

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A couple of weeks ago, I met up with local photographer Elise Lappan for a photo shoot! It was a lot of fun, and the photos turned out wonderfully! Here are a couple of my favourite captures. If you’re looking for someone to do a portrait session with, Elise is super friendly and professional.

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Also wanted to post about the upcoming Windsor Small Press Book Fair, which is happening on April 13th. Looking forward to being a part of that as well!

I’m just wrapping up the final draft of the sequel to The Patch Project. The past couple of weeks have been full of editing, which has been pretty fun, to be honest! Can’t wait to share more about that next week.

I was going to go and do things today, but the ice out there is insane. Stay safe, all!

holiday draw

Congratulations to Sarah O. for winning The Patch Project Holiday draw! You can watch the draw video here.

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The Green Bean Festive Market was a wonderful event! All of the vendors were cool and friendly, and there was a steady flow of people mingling and checking out the tables throughout the day. I’m very happy to report that all of the copies of The Patch Project I brought to the event sold! I still have buttons and copies of “Showing Her Teeth” available, so if you’re interested in picking up a locally-created illustrated story, let me know!

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This’ll be my last blog post of 2018. Thanks to everyone who read, reviewed, or gifted a copy of The Patch Project this year. Thanks for coming out to events, or meeting up with me to talk about the book. Thank you for hosting book discussions, for requesting copies for your local library, for sharing and commenting on my social media – for all of the ways you’ve reached out and supported my journey as an author. I couldn’t do this without all of you.

Hope you have a wonderful season of Christmas and holiday celebrations, and wishing you all the best for 2019!

 

festive times

It’s the last Patch Project appearance of 2018! I’ll be running a vendor table at The Green Bean Festive Market, happening this Saturday, December 8th from 11:00 – 5:00 pm. Drop by, say hi, and enter the free draw for a chance to win a signed copy of The Patch Project!

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There will be buttons and copies of “Showing Her Teeth” as well as copies of The Patch Project available for purchase. Plus, a ton of amazing local creators and crafters are going to be there!

After Saturday wraps up, I’ll be taking a break from events for the holidays. I’ve set a deadline for editing the sequel to The Patch Project – final draft by the end of February! – which is exciting! It’s been a different kind of writing process from the first book, which I may consider posting about in the new year. I’ve also been more intentional about reading lately, and am working on getting the last book of Ursula K. LeGuin’s incredible Earthsea cycle. It amazes me that I’d gone so long without reading them!

I’ll be back next week to announce the winner of The Patch Project holiday draw!

 

Are you taking a break for the holidays? Or is it a more productive time of year for you creatively?

filmtastic and other made up words

This week’s post is a little late on account of the filmtastic weekend we had and the terrible cold/ flu symptoms that followed! On the mend now, thanks to our good friend’s gift of soup and apple juice and a lot of sleep.

48 Hour FlickFest

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48-hr FlickFest was a grand time: we wrote the script Friday night, filmed all day Saturday, and edited the footage into a short film on Sunday. Although we missed the deadline by 13 minutes, I’m extremely proud of everyone who worked on it. It was also amazing to be co-directing with Peter. We’re a really good team, filling in for one another and depending on each other’s strengths on-set. I hope that making another film is in our near future!

UCC Neighbourhood Block Party

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Photo by Sarah Kivell

In the middle of all the film-making, I took a short break to read at a neighbourhood block party. Kara Kootstra, a children’s author who read right before me, ended her reading by telling the kids that they could grow up to be authors and illustrators too – a real poignant moment for me. I had to follow it by saying that my book was not for children – I actually cut my reading short because I forgot the chapter gets into a bit of couch surgery, so… not exactly family friendly. But it was a comfortable setting, with a lot of positive energy, and I was super thankful to be a part of it!

Upcoming Event

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From the Feminist Fair Facebook page

Next weekend, I’ll be at the Feminist Fair! Artists, writers, and activists will be there sharing their creative work. I’ll have copies of The Patch Project for sale, as well as some buttons. Check it out if you’re around Windsor on the 27th!

fall things

This past week brought the first inklings of fall – I got to wear a sweater outside, it was glorious! And with the new season comes a renewed motivation to make things!

In terms of The Patch Project, I’m in the process of booking some tables at local events. I’ll post more info about these and possible readings in Windsor as they come up!

I went and started a vlog called “Not all writers.” When I was searching for writing vlogs on YouTube, the first ones that came up had impressive production value with well put together people in front of the camera. Just a heads up, my vlog is like the opposite. I’m planning to post a couple of times a week: this’ll help me track the process of my new manuscript and hopefully connect with other writers.

Totally unrelated to writing (or maybe super related), I learned how to make origami stars yesterday and have made an entire jar’s worth. I would edit a bit, then make three or four of them. Maybe my creative flow is telling me to take more breaks?

What are your creative plans for fall? Do you find it easier to write at certain times of the year? 

where i’ve been

The past few weeks, I’ve really gotten back into writing. In fact, I finished my first draft of my next novel!

Finishing a first draft is its own particular high. The outline is done, the arcs have reached their destinations. Maybe some questions are left unanswered, but the characters are nowhere near to where they started. So many hours went into crafting the story that now features a “the end” on the last page.

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But the work is far from done. Edits are needed. Some sections are still skeletal. There are characters that got glossed over in the pursuit of plot. And since this book is a sequel, there are points from The Patch Project that still have to be addressed.

And in my case, entire concepts have to be changed. Here’s an example: Originally, I wanted to call the people who scavenge supplies from the wasteland “finders”. Typing it into Google (to make sure I wasn’t inadvertently copying someone’s title), I discovered that the most recent articles related to “finders” are about a cult. Not really the association I wanted readers to make. So I had to go off in search of a new word, a new label that would make sense in the world of the book. Still looking for something straightforward that doesn’t sound weird.

Something that’s really helping with editing is recording myself reading each chapter aloud. The reading aloud part helps to weed out awkward phrases and catch missed words. Listening back helps track the progression of each section, and to highlight unintentional tense changes. If you haven’t tried this method, I highly recommend!

As I’ve been getting deeper into edits, I’ve also been thinking about starting a vlog to track the progress of the book and interact with readers. Any tips?