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I am still reading The 5th Wave. If I wasn't trying to get a novel written this summer, I would have finished reading this by now but because it's SO GOOD and I can't seem to get anything done when I read...I'm going try my best not to read more than I write this week. This is actually easier said than done but...baby steps.


I am still plowing through Unfair. I didn't get a lot written last week, mainly because the weather has been extremely dry/hot lately and it's driving me insane. But I played catch-up yesterday/this morning. My current word count is  9,143. I hope to reach 10K before the day is over, and then I can buy Siege & Storm!

I'm so glad you guys liked the teaser I shared last week. Maybe my first-draft writing isn't so bad after all? Anyways, here's another one. It's a little long (and rough):

“I can handle myself,” I tell him.
He wipes at his mouth with a cloth but the red fabric does nothing to hide his smile. He finds me amusing. I can see in it is bright green eyes. Lord Beck was laughing at me inside his fat head. “You are an interesting woman, Miss…”
“Just call me Thorne, my lord.”
His shoulders rise and fall all in one breath. “It suits you,” he said. “You have a sharp edge to you. I’m sure you’d be lovely if you dressed like a woman.”
“No one takes me seriously when I wear a dress. Now what is this errand you speak of?”
Lord Beck held out his meaty fingers, gesturing to the untouched food on my side of the table. “I will tell you after you have had something to eat."
I chose one of the green fruits, and picked at the skin for a few moments before holding it up to my nose. It smelled earthy and sweet, different from what I was used to but the hunger didn’t care. It forced me to sink my teeth into the flesh, and let the pinkish-red juices drip down my chin. A bittersweet flavor filled my mouth.
 It tasted like guilt.
And it was. I shouldn't be here, dining on fine food. Not when people in the village are waiting for night to bring them their only meal of the day.
I set the half-eaten fruit down on the table, and repeated my question, only instead of words, Lord Beck answered me with another smile. One he didn't make an effort to hide. But I wish that he had. His crooked teeth, and wine-stained lips made my skin crawl. "Now I see it," he said, slamming a hand down on the table. The dishes clattered at the impact. "You're the coffinmaker's daughter."
There was a playfulness in his tone, and a twinkle in his eyes as he looked at me.  The coffinmaker. Does he forget who my father used to be? The title he once had? I want to remind him but the words don't come. Not the right ones, anyway. “Yes, I am."
“How is old Efar these days?”
“The suns have blessed him." 
Lord Beck nodded, “Some time has passed since we last spoke to each other. I hope that he will stop by so that we can reminisce on old times.”
It hurt to  return his smile. He called it old times, though I’m certain my father would have used other words to describe their friendship. Or maybe he would say that they didn't have a friendship at all. What was left of it was destroyed years ago by Lord Beck's betrayal.
“Please be sure to pass along an invitation to your father. I would very much like to speak with him about some important matters.”
My patience was wearing thin. “And I would very much like to speak with you on the important matters you wanted to discuss. My time is precious, Lord Beck.”
He smiled, yet again. I’m starting to think that this is the only thing this man knows how to do. Maybe he can’t help it. Maybe his smile isn’t a smile but a crease in his bloated pink face. But then I see it. The fire. The flame. Sondra told me that my mouth would get me in trouble one day, only I didn’t think that today would be that day. Not when I had a dagger on my person, and could slit Lord Beck's throat before the guards managed to get to the room.  
“You’d take care to watch your tone with me, Camellia.”
So he did remember who I was.
“I beg your pardon.” The words tasted like ashes. “Sometimes I forget that I am no longer a highborn, and that my father is no longer Lord of Malodyra.”
“It would do you some good to remember. Now,” he said, taking a sip of his wine. “Let us discuss these important matters. I don’t want to waste any more of your precious time.”

Goals for the week:
  • Finish Chapter Two
  • Start working on Chapter Three
  • Draw a map: My MC is going to be travelling pretty soon and I think it would be helpful if I had some kind of map to keep all of the locations straight. I also just want to have an excuse to use my mom's good colored pencils.


  • "The power of fantasy is that you can do anything. Anything at all. You start with that core of reality and from there you’re allowed to grow anything from that fertile seed-bed. And yet, so much fantasy looks like so much other fantasy. Stop that. Embrace the wide open openness of the genre. The power of magic is that it’s motherfucking magic. You are beholden only to that which you yourself create. Go big. Dream weird. Be original. Why do what everyone else has already done?" - Chuck Wendig  I ran across this quote on Tumblr this morning and while I was reading it, I couldn't stop myself from nodding. I haven't read a lot of fantasy novels but the ones I have read are too safe. They don't really explore different parts of the world, and I want to do this with my book. I want to let my imagination run wild and see where it takes me.

This post is getting to be really long (I think) and since I don't have anything going on right now, let me just say to all my fellow Americans: enjoy tomorrow! I'm not looking forward to all of the fireworks (it's the one thing about the 4th of July I can't stand) but I hope everyone has a happy/safe holiday. Also, this is a little late but Happy Canada Day! I hope everyone who is from Canada had a good one. :)

Thanks for reading!


I am so glad you shared again - that excerpt was full of awesome and your writing is stellar and I really, really hope you will share more! Um...SOON.

Also, I have the 5th Wave up very soon on the TBR and I can't wait to read it! I think I will make it my reward after I get to my midpoint of my WiP.

Good luck with meeting your goals this week!


I really enjoyed that excerpt. Your writing is so good. What are you talking about - first draft suckiness? ;-)

Good luck meeting your goals this week Raven. The heat is also being a bother for me too (LOL I wrote about it in my post today :P


Love that quote about fantasy, and I adore the excerpt you shared -- definitely no first draft suckiness in that section. :-)

Best of luck with your writing goals for this week, Raven. I'm rooting for you!


Oh oh oh I love this! I'm a big sucker for fantasy--it's what I write too, though mine tend to not be epics. Good luck on your goals this week!


Thanks for the Canada Day wishes, Raven! :) I'm so happy you're enjoying THE 5TH WAVE. I definitely did. And I agree with Katy: definitely no first draft suckiness in the snippet you shared. I'm really enjoying what you've shared so far. Good luck with your writing this week!


Drawing a map sounds like such a cool idea! I am a bit obsessed with maps, and since I've been writing about real life locations, I rely heavily on maps, which help to then invent the rest based on what's actually there. Maps and calendars and timelines I tend to hyper-focus on, to the point that sometimes I need to ease up a bit... :)

I like that Chuck Wendig quote. I agree, fantasy shouldn't have limits. But I can guess why it does; when writers or filmmakers push boundaries, there are always nay-sayers who say it departs from x source material like Lord of the Rings or whatever, and I think writers tend to want to respect original sources but then get boxed in by them. It's a delicate balance.


Thank you so much!

And The 5th Wave is a really great book to reward yourself with. Just make sure you set aside a little bit of time to read it. It will consume you and just when you tell yourself you'll only read a few more pages, that turns into a few more chapters.

Good luck with your wip/meeting this week's goals! :)


We should find a giant bottle, stuff all of the heat inside of it, and send it somewhere else. I'm not sure if this would actually work but...we're writers. We can make anything work.

And thank you! I have a tendency to think everything I write sucks. I'm glad you didn't think this was too bad. That really means a lot. :)


What a snippet! Thanks for sharing. Miss Thorne sounds awesome and I looooove the tension running throughout.

The 5th Wave is absolutely FANTASTIC isn't it? What a book!


I too have THE 5TH WAVE on my TBR and with all the positive reviews I'm reading, I'm looking forward to it.

What Chuck says about Fantasy is true of fiction as a whole. Whether you work within the confines of a world you create or the world in which you live, you can still do anything you want. That's the power of story-telling. :)


great excerpt! The heat definitely kills the writing mood, I need some rain! Good luck with your goals!


Yay for another excerpt! Thank you for sharing!
I love drawing maps. Any excuse to get pretty with pencils and markers works for me. :) Good luck with your writing this week!


"The words tasted like ashes." My favorite quote from the passage, I can totally see that! And I'm with you, Fantasy authors (especially high Fantasy) who keep it A. too similar to modern world or B. too similar to other authors bore me, I'm like seriously, why can't you do something different? It's your book, your imagination?!?! I'm writing a futuristic MG now and I hope to be able to take the reader on a wild ride, or at least myself for now since people won't be reading it for a while.


I loved The 5th Wave. I'm glad you're enjoying it. Loved your excerpt! Good luck on your writing goals. Have a great weekend!


Thanks for sharing your excerpt - nice work! Good luck with your goals this week!


I loved THE 5TH WAVE! I hope you're able to power through - but you're so right, your writing takes precedence!

Best of luck hitting your writing goals this week - especially if that means you get to treat yourself to SIEGE AND STORM. Loved that one, LOVED.

Hope you have a great weekend!


I read The 5th Wave week. I actually used it as an incentive to get some of my writing done, but we'll see how I do the rest of this week now that I've finished the book...

I loved your excerpt. I definitely got a sort of creeper vibe from Lord Beck right away. And I wouldn't have known that was a first draft if I hadn't already...well...known. But my first drafts are more or less incoherent, so that's what I'm judging against, I suppose.

Good luck the rest of this week!


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