How I incorporated Mythology into my book.

Mythology in writing
Just earlier today I posted this post on Banshees from the Irish mythology but I figured I could also share how I incorporated this into my story.

In falling for Pink my main character Peggy McCarthy is a banshee which means that her scream heralds death.

But the thing is that when I started planning this story I wasn’t really sure where she gets this power from – I wasn’t exactly planning to use mythology.
So my first piece of planning for Peggy was how she looks.
Peggy is a 17 year old girl with pale skin and bright pink hair. She wears pastels or large sweaters. She wears a lot of armbands on her arms and occasionally she covers her pink hair with a beanie.

This does not sound like the pail ghosts that Banshees are sometimes described as.
So when I started researching banshees I latched onto the idea that they can shape shift. They are rumoured to be seen in three different ways – the young woman, the matron and the hag.
The stories also say that they only come out at night and that they hide in the forests.
All this came down to me as a mentality of hiding.
Banshees want to be hidden. The shape shifting is just something they do to hide.

 

So this worked perfectly for me because Peggy is an insecure girl who wants to hide. She has this voice of fear telling her to hide and run.
Peggy can’t shape shift in this book though.
I had to ask if you are a 17 year old monster who always feel like hiding, why the hell would you dye your hair bright pink?
The answer is so people don’t see the real you. People only look at her pink hair and ear piercings, which means that no one looks close enough to notice that she’s a monster.

 

My second problem was that I didn’t actually want Peggy’s scream to kill people, so I wove a reason, for her powers to be a bit duller, into her family lines.
Peggy is a half breed. Her mother was a banshee and her father was one of the people that her mother was supposed to haunt.
Her parents fell in love and raised Peggy together.

This fit like a glove because it explained why she can’t shape shift as well. Her whole Banshee side has been thinned out because her father is one of the very people that the banshees haunt.

This also leaves Peggy without anyone to haunt which is why she can live where she wants to and not have to follow anyone around.

 

The final thing of banshee lore that I added was her surname. If her father is from one of the families her mother had to haunt then there is a specific group of surnames that I could choose from.
So I chose the surname McCarthy which fit her name well, and also fit in with the rest of my story.

 

Do you think this works? Are there any more theories that you think I could add, or a question you would like to ask?

I really loved writing this story and I hope you will love reading it one day.

The Irish mythology known as the Banshee

Okay let’s talk mythology.

 

Irish mythology_ banshees

 

On to draft 2 of my story Loving Pink and I once again had to revisit my research on Irish mythology to make sure I have all my facts right.
To those of you who don’t know in my paranormal romance novel the main character, Peggy McCarthy, is a banshee.

 

Banshees are a very popular Irish Myth, and basically they would be described as Female spirits whose song or scream is a sign that someone is going to die.

 

Physically they have been described in many different ways over the years.

Some people say that they are gorgeous pale ghosts with white hair. Yet other times they are described as horribly ugly old hags.
They have also been described as plain washerwoman who looks much like everyone else but the clothes they wash have blood on it.
A common theory is that they are shape shifters that can transform from being a beautiful young maiden, to a mother, to a hag.

 

There are also conflicting stories for where they can be found.

Some of the more plain versions say that the banshees are found in Irish forests.
The more common myth though is that banshees follow certain Irish families around. They haunt the families, mark the deaths with their voices and then take care of the deceased spirits.
These families are of Goidelic origins which means that they are decedents of natives of Ireland and not decedents of the English, Norse or Norman invaders

 

With so many conflicting stories though, the question of the banshee’s origin is often lifted.

Where does the myth of Banshees come from?

There are strong beliefs that the myth of Banshees come from the traditional Irish keeners – who are woman that sing a lament over someone who died.
You can clearly see how the banshees and the keening woman can be connected. Except where the keeners sing after the death the banshee sings before the death; thus heralding that it will happen.

 

This has been really awesome topic for me to research and to bend a little to fit my story.
It’s really interesting to me, and it’s the reason why Ireland is at the top of my travel list.
If I have any facts wrong feel free to tell me, because I’ve only found all this out over the internet anyway 😛

(My top source: Irish Celtic Jewels) Read it for more information.

 

If you like this post please share or comment, I would love to hear what you think about banshees.

 

Finished with draft 2!

It’s 11:30 pm and I just finished with the second draft of Falling for Pink and I’m just so excited about this!
I literally sat down read it from beginning to end after not touching it in over a month and fixed any spelling errors or plot holes that I came across.

 

The amazing thing is that I have been putting this off because I’ve been sure that it’ll be bad – and I was honestly surprised. Especially by my characters who I thought where going to be figurative garbage.
They weren’t and it’s like I got to know them again for the first time. This time I wasn’t focusing on if they are consistent as characters but instead I simply read it and hoped that how they feel authentic.

 

If you asked me a month ago to describe Peggy the main character I would have said she was insecure, slightly pathetic but at least she tries… sounds stupid right but while I have always loved writing Peggy I was certain that this was the case and that no one would ever want to read about her.
Now I’ve reread the story and actually got to witness Peggy and not write her my mood about her changed completely.
She’s funny and romantic and gutsy when she feels like it. Yes she’s insecure but that’s a massive part of what the book is based on and I don’t feel like it makes her less of a character. She’s awkward but not afraid to call people out and I absolutely love her.

 

Benjamin the love interest has also been completely misunderstood by me – his creator.
A month ago I would have said he was respectable, confident, and even headed. BOY would I have been lying.
Benjamin King is a rebel, and a bit of a moody teenager. He’s a flirt and a goof but he has morals even if he takes unconventional ways to reach them. More than just that he literally does not care about other people’s nonsense. He rolls his eyes in the face of danger and I love him almost as much as I love Peggy.

 

 

Here is a quote that I feel just says so much about the couple and is part of the reason I love them.

 

“Do you really think you and I can be a good couple? I mean your parents don’t even know that I’m a banshee, your sister still mostly dislikes me and I’m still not really good at handling people, especially not your aunt,” Peggy said.
Benjamin shrugged.
“It’s not like I’m any better,” he said.
Peggy frowned at him shook her head.
“You’re stubborn, charming, and not at all bad to look at either.”
“And you think you’re not?”
Peggy shrugged. She wasn’t a pretty girl, and she wasn’t aiming to be one either which was why she had piercings and pink hair.
He simply shook his head. “It’s a shame that you don’t see what I see then.”

 

They’re just so cute!
The hard part for me right now is I’m the only fan of this story (because I’m the only one who has read it) so bare with me if I choose to fan girl about it here.

Right now my next step with Pink is to send it off to Beta readers and then I have an editor friend who said she’ll look at it in the holidays. So I’m super excited about this right now and hopefully you’ll be seeing some more inside sneak peeks here.

 

I should probably go to bed but I have this really stupid urge to draw fanart…
Or is it concept art if I’m the writer???

 

Anyway, I can’t wait for you all to read the book hopefully I get someone to read it soon so I can have someone to talk to about it 🙂

Pink update

novel-updates

I finished Pink about two weeks ago (sorry for not telling you sooner) and so now I get to start focusing on other things.
How Pink went.
First of all, my novel ‘Pink’ is standing on a decent 60 000 words and I actually like how its plot turned out. It was genuinely weird to write because I’ve never written a romance before but I decided that I have to give it a go and I don’t think I did too badly.

What I’m planning to do from here off on is not quite planned out yet because I’m still waiting for some factors about next year to come in, so I can know exactly how much time I’ll have to dedicate to my writing life.
What I do know though, is that I’ll be either editing it myself, or get someone to edit it for me, so I can put up more chapters onto WattPad. I want to share this story with you and anyone else who wants to read it because I feel like it’s a good place for me to start this journey of mine until I really have a plan for how I’m going to get published.

 
You see next year is looking a little hectic.
I have some hard school subjects some of which I’ve never had before and I’m probably rewriting my math from 2016 because I don’t feel like I did good enough in the exam this year so I’m choosing to redo it if I don’t get like 75%
There’s some fun things added to the schedule though! I now have two adorable cousins to tutor in the afternoons which are double the one that had in 2016. I’m actually looking forward to that, even though they keep me at the house a lot and really busy. (That means no going out or writing in the afternoons)
Because my workload is doubling, the money my aunt is paying me is also almost doubling which is actually really cool because if I save all of it I might (note the words might) be able to buy myself a new laptop at the end of the year. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for over a year now because the one I’m currently using has battery issues which means I can only use it while plugged in and it over heats easily.

 

I have other things on the schedule such as band practices, musical instruments to master, tutors to see about school subjects and a couple of other things.
It’s not really that I have a lot to do but a lot of the things I do need to do, takes either a lot of time and concentration or it causes a lot of stress.
Since I know I’m bad at handling stressed I’m a little scared of 2017

 

I’m scared because I can’t trust myself to remain calm in times of stress and in 2016 it was exactly stress that caused me to struggle with writer’s block for the first part of the year.
It’s because I put the things I stress about before writing that I stopped blogging properly last year and I honestly don’t know if I’ll be able to work past it in 2017.

 

I want to write.
I want to write in 2017 and in the years after that. I want to write books and I want to give writing courses, but I can’t just ignore everything else to do that.
So I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to revaluate my methods of working and reprioritize what I need to focus on.
I need to decide where I’m going with my studies, because I know the aim is to go to university but that’s not good enough anymore, I need to know what I want to do with my education and what exactly it is I want to go study when I’m done with high school.
This post has degraded into a ramble but I don’t mind because it means it was really productive for me, in a way to help me refocus myself and I actually feel the beginning of a plan start to form in my head.
So I’m going to call the end of this post, and then once I have more details on my plan I’ll share it.

btw: I’m writing the writing lessons for 2017 in advance and I’m nearly done with February. I’ll be telling you more about that soon as well so keep an eye out for my next posts.

My novel update

nanowrimo_2016_webbanner_winner

NaNoWriMo update

Pink update.

 

As of yesterday, the 28th of November, I am officially done with NaNoWriMo 2016!

That’s right! I’m done with the 50K words that I said I’ll put into my novel Pink during November… this means that Pink will be completely done in a couple of days.
(I’m aiming for between 55K and 60K total words in the end)
So now that I’m done giving you the news I can honestly say that this has been one hell of month.

I started this month in a bit of a tight knot – which is my way of saying that I was emotionally exhausted and busy with exams.
Truth be told when NaNoWriMo started this month I was scared to write.
You see I tried writing Pink earlier this year and it didn’t work so I scratched it and decided to give it a retry. When November hit I was suddenly afraid that it will fall flat again and that I would end up with absolutely nothing (writing wise) to show for this year.

My friend messaged me that day so we could do word sprints and suddenly despite the fear I found myself writing.

Imagine being underwater for too long. Your lungs start to burn and your heart is racing in your chest, because you know you’re drowning. Then suddenly you are dragged back to the surface and you take that first deep breath of fresh air. You are breathing again. Slowly you let yourself relax. You’re not drowning anymore.

I’m over dramatising this a bit but that’s how it felt to be writing again.

I wrote 7000 words on that first day.
Say it with me now!
Seven. Thousand. Words.

(I think that’s insane for someone who considered herself in a slump)

After writing it I messaged my boyfriend and told him that I love writing.
I told him that it reminded me why I wanted to be a writer.

 
The month has passed since then and there have been a lot of ups and downs.
I’ve deleted a bunch of words. I nearly gave up twice. I posted the first chapters on wattpad. I wrote a lot of updates. I got ahead of the word count. I fell behind on my word count. I did a lot, you see?

Now it’s all behind me. I’m free of NaNoWriMo!

With that said, I realize that I’m not free from Pink though… there is still a lot I need to do for this book and finishing it is at the top of that list.

 

So that’s what I’m going to do right now... and I’ll keep you updated until I’m completely done with it.
Then afterwards I’ll probably keep you updated on my next novel and the one after that, because that’s what writers do… we write.

 
If you’re a writer and your NaNo novel isn’t done yet then go sit down and write. Even if you aren’t done when November ends, just keep writing.
Just keep writing because that’s what you do.


Tell me how it’s going with your novel. Are you done yet? Are you done with NaNoWriMo like me?
All comments welcome!

My novel Pink, out there to be read

Writers all over the world will tell you that there is a certain kind of button that is truly horrifying to press. It’s the publish button.

What do you need to press when you just wrote your first blog post? The publish button.
What do you need to press when you write your first social media post? The publish button.
What do you need to press to share your stories with the world? The publish button.

Every time this button has to be pressed a writer can’t help but stop for a moment to think: do I really want to press that button?

Sometimes the fear wins and the blog post, social media post, or story is left as a draft for a while longer.
Then you get those moments…those turning points in life… when the writer presses publish – and suddenly something within the writer changes. They’ve done it, now they just have to wait.

Those who have been paying attention to my NaNoWriMo updates would know that last night I pressed publish on a site called wattPad. You might have heard of it, or you might not have but the point about wattPad is that it gives writers the chance to share their writing with a large platform of readers.

 
Now you (and anyone else on the internet) get to go read the first parts of my novel ‘Pink’.
Honestly, I’m scared of people reading it. Or perhaps I’m more scared that people won’t read it. I haven’t fully decided yet.

 
I had to press publish though, for the simple reason of my writing can’t grow in isolation. It needs to be read. How else am I supposed to create a career from it?

So without anything else to say, let me share with you my novel Pink.

 

Pink 

(^the heading is a link^)

pink
Peggy and Benjamin see each other every day. You see, she regularly drinks coffee at the shop where he waiters.
They are an unlikely couple though, with him and his captain America style clashing with her and her bright pink hair – not to mention half a dozen earrings
They are separated by more than just the social norm however, because while he is a normal young man she is something a bit more supernatural.

With danger and pain filling their lives Peggy and Benjamin loves each other despite knowing that it could not last.
If they can be good for each other is the next question.
Perhaps it would be better if Peggy simply disappeared out of Benjamin’s life forever, after all she’s a banshee and banshees are nothing but monsters.

This is a story filled with uncertainty and personal growth.
At the same time it’s formed a large part in my now life and I’ve certainly enjoyed writing it.

 
I hope you go and read it and if you do I hope you actually like it.
Don’t be afraid to comment or anything, you’re always welcome  🙂

NaNoWriMo day 21/22 – another step forward

I actually published the first parts of my work in progress ‘Pink’ on WattPad tonight.
Just a cover, description and the first four chapters.

It was a pretty hard thing to do, because so far I’ve always kept my writing to myself. This is my fourth novel and yet it will be the first that anyone will ever read.

I was hesitant to put it out there, after all it’s far from my best work, but as I sat down and thought about it, it all came down to taking a step forward.
I can’t expect my writing to grow better in isolation – and so with the lyrics of ‘let it go’ from the movie ‘Frozen’ repeating themselves in my head I pressed publish. Now it’s out there, just waiting for someone to read it.

The funny thing is that I don’t know if anyone will even read it. I have a lot of people lined up and telling me that I should let them know when they can read something of mine… but this might not be the best start up novel.
My favourite genre to write in is Fantasy and it’s what I’m best at. Yet here I am posting a paranormal romance novel that takes place in a modern society.
Why?
I’m not certain… am I allowed to blame my sister’s influence? Probably not.

So here I am, writing this post in literarily the middle of the night (12 pm as I read it) and telling you that I’ve taken another step in this journey to become a writer. I just hope it’s in the right direction.

(I’ll give another link and descriptions to the novel, tomorrow when I’m a little more awake.)

 


Word count: 35001
Motivation: high but tired