In Which the GoTeenWriters Challenge Runs Away with Me...

Monday, February 8, 2016

          Hello, lovelies! Today I am going to take some time to talk about my writing. Here lately, I just haven't been feeling it... I've been crazy busy (new job, last year of highschool, university plans!), and personal writing has kinda taken a bit of a back seat. But to be honest, I think this was a good thing--sometimes you just have to step back & breathe in order to reevaluate what you are doing and why.

          I write because I love it.
          I write because I am unique.
          I write because I have a story to share.

        And after this little break, I realized how much I missed it! It took a few writing-buddies nudging me in the right direction & encouraging me to stretch my muscles again. The start of this exercise came in the form Go Teen Writers' February Challenge. I was tempted to not sign up, but then I thought 'why not? I might just come up with something brilliant.'

        Aaaannndd...on Day #1, it happened. 

INSPIRATION. *cackling laughter*

    This beautifully satisfying thing that is a new story idea cannot be paralleled. Nothing quite compares with that moment. I mean, it feels so good to have some fresh ideas buzzing around in one's head! *sighs with contentment*

    Anyway... This new story idea is so exciting to me because it is something out of my comfort-zone. All of my stories, up until now, have either taken place in a fantasy world of my creation (thus, making me an expert!), or in America somewhere, because that's what is familiar & comfortable to me. AND I have never tried to write any characters of a different race/ethnic group than my own. Again, it is because I was unfamiliar with it! To a certain degree, I had "write what you know" drilled into my skull so deep that I assumed that I just couldn't write with another people-group/another place because it is something I didn't know. While the whole "writing what you know" thing is a good rule of thumb, I find that it can be very limiting when looked at legalistically. Writing what you don't know should encourage one to research & learn! I don't think it is meant to put a cap on creativity, I think it is intended to encourage growth as a reader and a writer and a person...

    So, it comes as no surprise that my story is not set in a complete fantasy world & that there will be some rather diverse characters in it! And also, I'm trying my hand at a slightly different style of writing as well. (The best way I know to describe it is by saying that the style is inspired by a hypothetical cross between Charles Dickens and J.K. Rowling... Both have a unique flair & a decent degree of quirkishness, which I adore! So, I wanted to take my own twist out for a spin.)

    I'm not gonna lie, I'm really excited.

    So, in order to rev you all up for the story-spamming you will probably be experiencing in the near future, I thought I'd share some snippets & some pictures. Since it will be a Steampunkish/Victorian style, I thought I'd add some pictures of the clothing as well. But first, a very brief synopsis...


"When Damian Tomko, an investigative journalist, publishes an inspirational article, his Editor (from the Daily Dispatch) gives him an undercover story at a dinner-party for political figures & other famous people. With the help of his good friend & coworker, Wren Emmerson, Damian uncovers a murder & a mystery that may very well change the course of history..."

Mr. Damian Tomko, the investigative journalist/detective.

Miss Wren Emmerson, Damian's good friend, coworker, & investigating partner.

Damian's trusty typewriter

Damian & Wren at the mansion for the party.

Something Wren might wear to work...

Something Damian would probably wear to work...

         Now for the snippets! The first chapter, which I will be sharing pieces of, is told from a clerk's point of view at the newspaper office. The following chapters are from Damian's POV, but I'm only going to share from the first part today.


    The thick smell of ink and parchment was almost intoxicating. The sharp clackity-click! of a hundred type writers sounded behind closed doors some way down the hall. Somewhere, someone was downing a large cup of coffee—strong and black, most likely, judging by the richness of the scent curling and wafting through the hallways. And of course, there was plenty of bustling. Elbows were applied as needed to clamber in and out of the nearly-too-small lifts that opened and closed nearly a moment too soon. Faces that were intent on their work hardly recognized anyone else’s; whether from exhaustion or spite, none could be too sure.
    It was a pleasant enough scene, ignoring the fact that some of the folks from Department of International Relations were clogging the lift on the third floor, all claiming to have been called to the Department of Public Safety.
    ‘That’s the third time this week’, thought Cricket Gitworth as he scuttled down the steps to the second floor. ‘Most intriguing, indeed…’


    Anyone who knew Damian knew that he was a modern man, preferring fresh ideas to staler ones, and was consistently trying to bring change to the world around him. His ideas were odd, his beliefs peculiar, and his mind in a constant state of motion. He traveled whenever the chance arose, almost begging for the openings for stories taken abroad. His clothes were nice enough, but he often forgot to get a haircut for months at a time, allowing his dirty, blond, shaggy hair to stick out in all directions. And his coffee consumption habits were unbelievably atrocious!
    In short, the clerk disapproved of him.
    Newfangled notions, traveling, and drinking copious amounts of coffee when tea was perfectly fine was all quite foreign to the young clerk. And it wasn’t too hard to grasp that these foreign things were of the sort that made one uncomfortable. Change and the unexpected were awfully disagreeable to the man, and he couldn’t bear the thought of anyone else experiencing those disagreeable things either.


    “Tomko, I haven’t the slightest desire to listen to your incessant babble any longer!” Mr. Bumble harrumphed fiercely, “As a matter of fact, I don’t even want to hear your silence. Your very existence is putting me off at the moment. I have no doubt that this letter—” he waved it in the calm fellow’s face, “—is probably from the Department of Public Communications Control, letting me know that today’s edition of my paper contains classified information that could cause public turmoil!”


    Damian stared pointedly at the little Editor, sticking his hand in his charcoal-colored waistcoat’s pocket. His jaw was suddenly tense, and he ceased to blink his disturbingly grey eyes. He pulled out his watch again. Ten thirty-five…
    Mr. Bumble was silent for a beat, frowning darkly at the page he laid on his mahogany desk. The clock above the doorway ticked, mercilessly.
    Gitworth gulped.
    “How you ever managed to weasel out of this incident, I’ll never comprehend,” Bumble finally murmured, cutting his eyes over to Damian, “We should have been shut down. I should be in complete social and financial ruin right about now.”
    “But you aren’t, sir,” Tomko replied, evenly, “You have a direct letter of thanks from three of the most important men in New Europe laying on your desk, and an emblem of national pride over your name for generations to come.”


    The clerk stared stupidly at the door as it closed behind him. He had never seen such a crazy turn of events in all his days of working at the Bureau. It made him a little dizzy.
    “Gitworth,” Mr. Bumble groaned, eyeing the clerk, “Fetch me some tea, biscuits, and something for a headache. Be quick, now.”
    The overwhelmed clerk stumbled out of the office, and turned out onto the hallway. And in the distance, just as he was about to turn the corner, Gitworth thought he could just make out Damian Tomko dancing a little jig into his office.


     And there you have it, peeps! That is some of what I have been working on this month. I know I haven't posted much since the new year started, but I'm trying to find a way to fix my schedule so I can post more often! I have some fun blog posts coming soon, so stay tuned. Also, in honor of Valentine's Day, I will be hosting a giveaway soon! *mwahahaha* So keep your eyes peeled for that as well.

    In other news, for those of you who don't follow me on Twitter, I started a new job! I'm a secretary-assistant & I'm loving the work. (Plus, I'm liking having some extra book-money stashed away! lol!) I also have accumulated a terrifying addiction to listening to Audible's audio books. And this mode of story-gobbling is how I completed all seven Harry Potter books!! Let me say it again... J.K. Rowling, you are brilliant!! *flails* (A series-review will hopefully be coming soon.) 

    Well, guys, that's about it for now. Thanks for reading! What have you been up to this month? Any new & exciting writing projects I should know about? Are you taking the February Challenge too? Are you addicted to Audible? Let me know in the comments!

Currently Reading: The Bells of Paradise by Suzannah Rowntree (Check out her blog!)
Just Finished: Emma by Jane Austen
Listening to: The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman via


  1. !!!!!!!! I'M IN LOVE. Where can I get more of this story?? :)

    1. I'M SO GLAD YOU LIKE IT, OPAL!!! :D I can send you the whole chapter, if you'd like... I've only sent it to a handful of special people, & I'd love for you to read it too! <3

  2. Oh my gosh you're doing so much better than me with this idea thing. xD I JUST HAVE NO INSPIRATION. NONEEEE. Sigh. I've one a more every-other-day thing, because I always leave my brainstorming time for midnight and by that point I'm utterly exhausted. Shame on me. :P

    You're super inspiring, though. I want to go look through my Pinterest and come up with ideas, so thank you. xD
    This story idea sounds super awesome. I love steampunky stuff like this. :D

    1. Hey, Katie! :D Dawww... THAT'S NOT TRUE! I've done hardly any other planning this month, so your "every-other-day" thing is still better than my two/three ideas. lol! Midnight seems to be THE time for inspiration? I wonder why? There should be a study done on that. :P

      Girly, you've written what, 90,000 words on your Song of the Desert, right?? THAT fact is totally inspiring to me! But I'm super glad to be able to encourage you, though. Encouragement is the bomb. :) And I'm pumped about this story! Steampunk is fun, so I'm just going to *try* to give the book the reigns for a bit & see what happens.

      Thanks so much for taking the time to read! <3

    2. Well, my every other day brainstorming sessions may have turned into nonexistent brainstorming sessions. *headdesk* Hopefully you're doing better than I am? :P

    3. Ehehehe... *blushes* Maybe?? :P I'm coming up with some character ideas here & there. So I guess that counts for something! *shrugs*

  3. Congrats on the job!
    I would read this, the outfits, the setting, and of course the writing are all lovely and seem exactly like something I would devour.

    1. Hey, Skye! :) Thanks! I'm enjoying the work! <3

      Aw... That's great! I'm glad you like it thus far. It's encouraging me to write some more! lol!

  4. Last year of high school....what an exciting time in your life!

    1. Hello, Sandra! :) YES, it's a quite exciting time for me!! (And kinda stressful... lol! But I'm sure it will get better.)

      Thanks for stopping by! <3


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