Natasha McNeely's Author Blog

Never stop dreaming, 'cause the day you stop dreaming, is the day you stop living.


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Journey To Germany

Hi everyone!

This is just a quick update to explain what’s going on in my life. This coming Tuesday, September 13th, I’ll be getting on a plane for an almost ten-hour flight from Seattle to Germany.

I’ll be visiting my parents from September 14th – December 6th.

It’s going to be exciting and I’ll also get to see my cats, as well as the dog they got after I moved back to the US. I’ll definitely be blogging while I’m in Germany. I’ll likely also take a trip to the Netherlands and possibly England while I’m there.

This week so far has been full of meeting up with friends and family before I disappear for almost three months. More meeting up will happen in the next few days, alongside finishing up packing my suitcase and bags. Fun, but busy times!

This trip will be a good chance for me to catch up on my writing. I need to finish writing my book, Vanquished Virtue, before November hits so I can start writing the sequel during National Novel Writing Month!

Look forward to upcoming blog posts. If I don’t pass out when I land on September 14th (at 8:40 in the morning!), then I’ll try to blog that day. We’ll see how it goes!

Where’s somewhere you’d like to travel to?

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Camp NaNoWriMo – Winner!

Once upon a time, it was a dark and stormy night, in a land far, far away…

There, a writer who hadn’t honed her craft in months was tired of sitting around and decided to give Camp NaNoWriMo a goal, with a small goal of 15,000 words.

Ten days in and 15,000 words later, she upped her goal to 25,000 words.

She attained that goal.

campnano

We did it! Two writers in the local writing group and I all started with goals of 10,000 – 15,000 words and all three of us upped our goals to 25,000 words. Guess what? We all reached that increased goal. The three of us encouraging each other and sharing snippets along the way was an amazing experience and something that clearly benefited all three of us.

For me, I’m now about one third of the way through this book, titled Vanquished Virtue. My goal is to finish it before NaNoWriMo comes around in November. After all, wouldn’t that be the perfect time to start book #2?

I won’t ramble too much today. After all, I’ve got more writing to do!


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2016 Writing – It Begins

I’ll admit it: I’m a horrible person because I haven’t written anything yet this year. My excuse is that I worked extra hours around New Years and that my third quarter of Japanese started last night. Between work and class, I haven’t had a chance just yet.

It’s time to change that.

I won’t waste too much time here, because I have writing to do. So for now, I’ll leave you with the opening paragraph. Expect updates to come more frequently from now on.

I worry sometimes that everything I’ve done will accumulate, one day at a time, until eventually it will erupt and bring with it horrible consequences. The future eludes me in that way. All I have are speculations – situations I think may happen to me one day. But what good are speculations?

What are your 2016 plans?


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Psst…

I’ll keep this one short.

New novel in progress during National Novel Writing Month. Once I finish this first draft, I’m heading back to Kaine and Vera’s novel to give that the editing it deserves. Gotta blow the dust of it. With any luck, I’ll finish this book by the end of the year and can start editing that book come January 1st.

I’ll write more here later, but for now, here’s a little snippet of the book I’m tentatively titling, Second Chance.

“Ben -” I froze as the elevator stopped on the second floor. The doors opened and it was like a tidal wave of energy that surged at me in one giant swoop. Dark, powerful, and distinctly reminding me of one person. Instinct pushed me forward, off the elevator and onto the second floor. I took a left, heading down the hall. An invisible imprint had been left in the air, noticeable only to those with illusionary abilities or stronger than average senses. The aura led me down the hall to the very end, where a door unlike the regular hospital room doors stood tall.

Over and out for now!


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First Draft – Done!

I’m not going to beat around the bush. The first draft of Kaine & Vera’s book… is done.

The book ended with a total of 66,723 words, which is on the short side, but in editing I’ll be adding two brand new chapters and will be fleshing some things out. I expect to get it close to 80,000 after editing.

For now, though, after staying up until 3 AM last night to finish the final chapter (which involved writing 4,313 words last night), then writing the epilogue today… I am done. It’s time to crash and rest.

Wednesday begins the adventure of my next book.


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Available Read: Tales of The Forbidden – Prologue

The first topic I’d like to talk about is that I missed Sunday’s blog post. Those who follow me on Twitter will have heard about it. If you don’t follow me on Twitter, I suggest you do as it’s the best way to get quick updates from me which I might not mention here.

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That aside, the reason I didn’t blog is because I got sick this weekend. That, coupled with no sleep Saturday night meant that I was about as understanding and able to focus as a wall. Or my cat. The little fur ball gets distracted easily. Too easily, really.

Syrah, a character in this series who has yet to be introduced, drawn by ~catgirlnekochan on deviantArt.

I ended up missing two days of college, but I’m feeling better now. I’m still not 100%, but it’s a work in progress and I did survive class today. A whopping two lessons. An hour and a half. Yeah. I’m proud of that accomplishment.

Moving on!

The point of this blog is a nice little surprise I made for you dear readers. Remember how I said I’d edit the prologue of my novel today and post it either Friday or Sunday for your reading pleasure? Well, I lied. I managed to do the first editing yesterday and gave it another once-over today. This beauty is now better than I thought it could be and ready for those interested. Without further ado, follow this nifty little link and see if it’s something you enjoy.

 Prologue

Please let me know what you think. I’m always glad to hear opinions, feedback and constructive criticism, so go for it!

One last thing. You’ll probably notice my blog has done a complete one-eighty. That’s because I’m finding out how I want my blog looking in the long run and this theme has a lot more options I like than the previous one.

Also, that header? My picture. I’m so horrible at pictures that it’s not even funny, but I did it anyway! It’s the only way to learn.

That covers everything I wanted to mention in this post.

Let me know what you think of the prologue and the new page layout and design! If there’s any advice you have, please feel free to tell me; it would mean a lot to me.


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Fatigue: A Writer’s Eternal Enemy

Fatigue. A writer’s eternal enemy. That pretty much sums up the reason this post is so late. This first week back at college has been rough and wore me out. Now, starting tomorrow, I’ll be working for four days straight, meaning Monday and Tuesday I have class, then work. It will be a rough weekend and begin of the week.

I originally intended to not post because of this. It feels like I’m seeing things through a haze and I can’t get around it. Luckily, I’ll be able to sleep in before my eight-hour work day.

The surprise I meant to post today will have to wait, but I’ll unveil what it. The newly edited prologue of my novel, Tales of The Forbidden.

The problem is that I wanted to edit it earlier this week, but couldn’t get around to it due to college and all. So, I now offer you a new date; either next Friday or Sunday. After my four-day stretch, I’ll have time to edit and present to you the shiny new version, seen for the first time. To hold you over, I’ll give you a look into part of the prologue. The first couple paragraphs.

I felt bad not having this done by the time I wanted, so I figured the least I could at least give you this. Before I pass out.

This is about as much as I can write without losing coherency, so happy reading!

Prologue

Bitter winds ripped across the gritty plain, casting grains of sand into the air. A man clad in tattered white robes stood in the desert. The sand beneath his bare feet caressed his skin, though colored crimson as blood trailed from many wounds and soaked into it. The upper part of his robes had been shredded and hung past his waist – a large gash tore across his chest and bled profusely.

The lacking garments on his upper body freed his wings; two wings larger than himself, once a stunning white were now tainted by dirt and blood, the remnants of his battle. His left-wing twitched and hung limp, and he cringed in pain, knowing full well that multiple bones were broken. The battle he ignited had stolen one of the few things that defined whom he was.

Despite his wounds, the man, no more than twenty-five summers, kept his composure. His sharp features, though twisted in slight detest, did not show the pain he felt. Pressing a hand against his abdomen to slow the blood flow of one of his wounds, he cast a glance around.

The battleground had fallen into silence, though once raged with the fight between both sides – the rebels and the holy. Now bodies littered the ground, wounded and fallen from both parties. Even though the war was fair at the beginning with no end in sight, the holy had soon received back-up and upon cornering the leader of their opponents, sealed their success.

Let me know what you think! I’m eager to hear your opinions on this first part of the prologue. The entire, edited, prologue will be available for reading soon!