15 Stages of Writing a Novel {DONE}

1. Getting a genius idea for a novel

anigif_enhanced-21780-1412910809-13You’re so happy about it and you want to tell everyone.

2. The first few thousand words are a breeze.

anigif_enhanced-buzz-3360-1387916722-9This is so great! I’m writing a novel. My idea, characters are so perfect. No one has ever thought of this! Since I have an idea I’m so passionate about, writing this novel is not going to be so hard…

3. You hit a stump and decide to just think about the novel for a while


I’ll just wait for some inspiration to write. It will come to me.

4. You don’t have any inspiration and can’t figure out what to write

anigif_enhanced-29877-1413046081-45. You finally get back into the writing groove

anigif_enhanced-32428-1413045238-11You got this. The idea is still there. Things are coming along. Getting the novel finished will be easy.

6. When friends and family ask “So what’s your novel about?”

anigif_enhanced-buzz-14584-1412898231-237. You’re trying, really trying, to finish the thing but new book ideas keep popping into your head

anigif_enhanced-buzz-23249-1412914210-16This idea is genius…and this idea…and this one too. The only problem? You.still.have.to.finish.your.WIP.

8. Getting so frustrated, you wish you could just be Kendall and Kylie Jenner and have someone else write “your” book and you put your name on it

Kendall-and-Kylie-Jenner-How-Much-of-Their-Book-Did-They-Write-650x471I mean it counts as your book even though a “co-writer” did all the work, right?

9. You find other quirky writer friends along the way

anigif_enhanced-buzz-1946-1412920766-24They read entire novels in five hours like you. They are struggling to finish a novel just like you. They’re perfect.

10. Although youre still struggling to finish writing

anigif_enhanced-2377-1410976180-911. Various people and obligations start to creep into your writing time

anigif_enhanced-buzz-15997-1387916979-5 Friends want to hang out, and hang out some more. You’re boyfriend/girlfriend wants to spend more time with you. You need to pick something up for someone, have work obligations, etc. etc. etc. RIP writing time.

12. After a while though, you finally get to finishing the first draft


13. You celebrate

anigif_enhanced-29745-1413050393-2All of those people that said you couldn’t write a novel? Yeah, they can keep quiet now.

14. Coming back and reading over the first draft is cringe-inducing


It reads like something from the horror genre with the amount of cliché sentences, descriptions, and plot holes.

15. And you realize you now have to revise…and get it proofread…and formatted…and write a book blurb…and get a cover designed…and get ISBN’s and copyrights…and have people read and review the ARC’s…


Amazon’s new pilots released

Remember last year when a Zombieland TV pilot popped up on Amazon and was panned? It eventually got “hated out of existence” (Rhett Reese, creator of the TV adaption’s words). Well fear not, a new batch of television pilots have been released on Amazon and nothing to negative has been said so far.

Amazon pilots coming to a screen near you.
Amazon pilots coming to a screen near you.

On February 6th, Amazon released 10 new pilots for free. Continuing the plan they had last year, viewers watch and vote on what pilots live and what pilots bite the dust. Out of the several pilots released last year, only two made it through the chopping block. The first was Alpha House, a show starring John Goodman that revolved around four U.S. Senators. It was met with acclaim and positioned Amazon as a serious contender against Netflix and its original programming.The second series that received a series order was Betas, a program showcasing a group of app developers looking for an investor.

Below is a list and description of the different pilots to take a look at.

The After: An apocalypse show from the creator of The X-Files. It centers on eight people of various backgrounds (lawyer, actress, etc.) as they face the events ahead.

The Rebels: Sports comedy revolving around a woman who must take over a team of football players after her husband passes away. It seems brainless, overdone and generic but worth a shot to watch. Plus it has Josh Peck (Drake & Josh) so you know it has some funny laughs to give.

Transparent: Not your typical sitcom comedy but it serves well. It involves a family as they face their host of problems. Three not-so adults including Jay Duplass (brother of Mark Duplass and mumblecore filmmaker). One might think it follows a bit in the footsteps of Arrested Development since it features Jeffrey Tambor. Rest assured it holds it’s own by providing good dialogue that doesn’t just go for cheap laughs.

Review of Ken Ilguna’s Walden on Wheels: From Debt to Freedom

Photo Courtesy of Amazon.com
Photo Courtesy of Amazon.com

Every so often, one can see the news articles talking about student debt. It is a hot topic right now. The average student debt continues to rise in America. People try to concoct a range of different ways in order to minimize it. One guy, Ken Ilgunas, took it to the extreme: he lived in his van to stay debt free.

Photo Courtesy of Colin Ashby
Photo Courtesy of Colin Ashby

Ken Ilguna’s book, Walden on Wheels: On the Open Road from Debt to Freedom, details his experiences in tackling his $32,000 in debt, vowing to take out student loans again, and eventually living in a 1994 Ford E-150 Econoline. The book is divided into three parts: Debtor, Living a free life in spite of debt, and the eventual van dwelling part three.

The book starts off with Ilguna graduating from college, no job offers, and 32,000 in debt. He explores what his college degree (in english) is really worth and what it could do for him. No job leads on the horizon, he travels up to Coldfoot, Alaska to work a $9 dollar/hour job as a cook at a truck stop (Coldfoot has the northern most truck stop in the U.S.). The book chronicles the two and a half years after graduation of him working one low paying job to the next. Despite the low pay, through his extreme frugal living he is able to pay off the $32,000 in just two and a half years (hence the title: Walden on Wheels). After paying off the debt, he buys a van off craigslist and lives in it while going to graduate school.

There is something special about this book. It’s a coming-of-age memoir that is more than just chronicling the author’s personal self. In the book, the Ilguna raises questions about his education. Was his degree worth it? Should he have majored in something more “marketable”? He learns by the end of the book that his broad liberal studies degrees (BA in English, MA Liberal Studies) allowed him to dabble and learn in everything. From his frugal living and newfound master’s degree he sees that he is still a student, a lifelong learner. He breaks from the traditional masses view of a college degree and life. College allows him to form his own way of thinking that lead him to have some amazing life experiences.

So yes, even a liberal arts degree has some value.  :

To learn more about Ken Ilguna’s book, check it out on Amazon.