NaPoWriMo 2015

Dear readers,

I would just like you to know that my NaPoWriMo 2015 participation will be hosted on another site, 1st Non-manuscript. It’s also my blog. Actually, it’s my original blog. It’s around 3-years-old.

That doesn’t mean I’ll be leaving WordPress, though. Even though Story in the Making was created by accident, it has become of sentimental value to me. So I’m keeping it. I’ll still be posting here once in every month.

Thank you for reading and I hope to get back to you soon! Have a prosperous April!

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Love Songs

Cadena de Amor plant

Well, I just collected ten love songs. I spoke to three, random strangers on the Internet today and they say these are their favorite love songs.

(Note: Starting from #7, I collected the songs from

“Top 100 Love Songs Of All Time” by Bill Lamb

and

“Readers Respond: My Favorite Love Song” by Espie Estrella)

1. “Love is a Losing Game” by Amy Winehouse
2. “I Will Follow You into the Dark” by Death Cab for Cutie
3. “L-O-V-E” by Nat King Cole
4. “Marry You” by Bruno Mars
5. “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” by Elton John
6.”Camera Shy” by School Boy Humor
7. “Love Story” by Taylor Swift
8. “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree” by Dawn & Tony Orlando
9. “Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Elvis Presley
10. “‘Til There was You” by The Beatles

They’re nice, aren’t they? Music is a matter of taste, I think. You can choose which ones you like the most. Or you can contribute your own. What are your fave love songs?

Well, this fellow writer has advised me that when I ask people questions like this, I should share my own answer first. But that’s a hard question for me ’cause I don’t have a fave love song. lol Um, the last great love song I heard is “More Than This” by One Direction. Not sure what it really says ’cause it’s the first time I heard it on Spotify and was writing the intro and list above while listening to it. I just think that it sounds pretty cinematic. You know, movie soundtracks.

So what are your fave love songs? 🙂

Photo credit: “Cadena de Amor (Chain of Love)” by me at Riverwalk, Riverbanks Center, Barangay Barangka, Marikina City on June 5, 2013 (10:00am). From my 2013 Rivebanks photo collection.

What to Not Watch in the New Year

Dear readers,

 

Happy New Year!

Have you watched “Maniac”? If not, you’re lucky. Because it’s a feel-bad movie.

Actually, it has a great story. Of course, “great” from a crime writer’s point-of-view. But not “great” from a regular person’s point-of-view.

It’s about a man who makes mannequins. He, like, sculpts them and gives them wigs. One day, a beautiful photographer takes interest in his mannequins. She hires him for her first art show.

The two characters eventually fall in love and become sort of like sweethearts. But she does not know that the wigs of his mannequins are stolen from real people. People whom he’s killed.

She starts to suspect him when one of the prominent people in her industry gets murdered. The victim’s scalp had been ripped off. He had actually been excluding our dear photographer from his routine killings because he, well, loved her. But as she starts to get frightened of him, a violent man’s love will be put to the test.

I like the conflict in the story. You know, he’s talented and still has some goodness left in him. He’s just too disturbed and way too deep into the mess that he’s created. If only I can rewrite that movie.

The primary annoyance about the movie is the way it was filmed. You can’t help but ask, why the hell does the whole movie have to be filmed from the eyes of the killer? And why, when he’s killing someone, does the camera suddenly leave his “mind” and focus on his face? It was dizzying, especially in such an intense plot. The director should have chosen only one angle all throughout the movie.

Aside from that, the lack of lighting, the visions that don’t make sense, and the weird color of the blood (the blood was like, dark red with spots of black; real blood is alive red), the movie might have been a good horror movie. It was well-acted and a bit of the screenplay was well-made.

If you’re fine with 1 hour of wasted viewing, alright, watch it if you like. But if you wanna start the year right, don’t watch it. Save it for Halloween. It will be good for Halloween.

Things I Noticed About NaNoWriMo

Hi, how are you? I wish that you’re fine.

It’s 10pm on November 30 here and I’m so sleepy. I have this rule in which I shouldn’t write blog posts late in the night, but I’m disobeying that ’cause I should somehow blog something for November. (Sorry for skipping October.) It’ll be December in two hours.

Anyway, be warned that this blogger is tired. Outside of the online world, I tend to mumble when I’m extremely exhausted. I “sound” the same in writing when I’m tired. People hate it when I write like that. But let’s try to proceed as usual.

I became one of the winners of NaNoWriMo 2014 this November 27. It’s my second NaNoWriMo win. In one of my log ins, I read that the NaNoWriMo website had a “makeover.”

There are a few changes I noticed.

The design is neater. There are fewer elements on the homepage, helping the user focus only on the key functions of the website (like signing up, etc.).

The website offers more badges. Users get virtual badges with every progress that they make. We used to get badges only for creating a novel, adding writing buddies, etc. Now, we get badges for writing 25,000 words and more.

I didn’t test this, but I read that our word count can now be updated via Mobile Web. I tried to update my word count via my smartphone last year, but the site won’t respond. I hope they changed that for all devices.

Our novel stats now show the day on which we won. The novel stats used to simply run out of numbers once the user has reached the word count goal.

There could be other changes in the website, but I didn’t have time to explore and observe enough. For example, I didn’t go to the forums this year. I didn’t read the pep talks either. (I was also studying and working while writing my novel, so the schedule was pretty tight.)

Based on the only things I’ve seen, the NaNoWriMo website has gotten better. The only thing that I didn’t like was how the Winner Certificate no longer states the date on which the user has won, but that’s not the website. The logos in the website have become neatly arranged far away from the text, helping the user focus more on each of them.

When I say good things about organizations, people think that I’m working for those organizations. I’m an independent author and I don’t write for anyone except you (there would be no one to write for without you). When I say that an organization is good, I mean it. In this case, the website is good. 🙂

Anyway, here’s what the NaNoWriMo 2014 Winner Certificate looks like. It’s beautifully designed and I appreciate the effort that they’ve put on all those drawings.

nanowrimo

Have you been participating in NaNoWriMo also, or a similar event? What are the changes that you noticed from the previous event?

LifeLessons101: Evil Neighbors

Good morning, good afternoon and good evening, class! Wherever you are in the world, students, today, we are going to focus on a new set of specimens: neighbors.

 

neighbors1

 

In religious and academic teachings, we are taught that neighbors should be treated well.

There are neighbors who deserve what are in the teachings. The traits of these specimens are: quiet, neat and they make sure that they don’t disturb you. But there are also neighbors who seem to have been manufactured in hell. We are going to focus on these specimens.

We will not study the kind of evil neighbors who tell the whole neighborhood how you fought with your boyfriend last night. We’re going to study the the kind of incurably criminal neighbors who stalk you 24/7 and do all sorts of premeditated things.

If you are rich, fine. You can move to a better place. But many of us have to do nerve-wracking work for some months until we can afford a better place. People like us live in little apartments with thin, wooden walls and thin, wooden floors. These types of living spaces offer nowhere for hiding from noise. And our landlords hate complaints, even when the complaints are about the noisy neighbors.

If you are one of us, how can you maintain your peace of mind within these “some months”?

Note: Talking to these types won’t do. You’re lucky if they’ll just yell at you, because they are usually violent. Worse, they’ll say that you are the one who attacked them. So DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME.

Do this one instead:

Meditation
1. Before going to sleep, sit down.

2. Relax.

3. Focus on your breathing.

4. If there are things that keep your attention from your own breathing, accept their presence into your consciousness. And then focus on your breathing again.

5. Focus on your breathing until you achieve inner peace.

Too bad for us, though, these types of neighbors won’t let us get better.

These neighbors stalk you to the bank. They climb to your window at midnight. They block alleys and won’t let you pass. They make holes on their roof and tell everyone that your cats – the cats that you love so much – created the hole. They pick a fight with you when you’re concentrating on something. And they whack the wall with a hammer while you sleep. Now that you know what kind of menace you have to face, here are the pointers for the upcoming exam.

The pointers are arranged from hardest to easiest. But I have to warn you.

 

neighbors2

 

neighbors3

 

The easiest way has the least effect on the subjects and can get you in big trouble.

  1. Forgive them. Force yourself to understand why they hate you. (Ex.: You have a job and they currently don’t. They’re jealous. So they disturb you in your sleep so you won’t be able to do your job very well the next day. They wish that you’ll get fired.) Learn to pity them. Understand that if you forgive them, you will lead a righteous life that will improve and someday, you’ll be able to peacefully buy a house in the mountains. The mountains, far away from all neighbors.
  2. Shut them out of your thoughts. It’s like walking along a street with lots of huge holes. You have to jump past each hole to keep yourself from falling. No matter how much they yell or whack your wall, force your mind to focus on something nicer, like the conversation that you had with an awesome person at school today.
  3. Cover your ears. Cottons and pillows don’t work; the noise still gets through. Curl up, raise your arms and cover your ears with your forearms. They’ll sound like they’re a block away.
  4. Yell at them to shut up.
  5. Wake up, get your pillow and hit the wall with the pillow.

I advice you to do #1. It is the safest and most effective solution.

And that’s it for today, class. Exam is when you move into one of these apartments. Have a nice day!

Author’s note: I was studying Neuroscience from HarvardX while bearing with weird neighbors when I wrote this. I was fascinated at the way the professor and his team taught a very complex subject like Neuroscience in a way that was very easy to understand. That inspired me to fashion my article after a run-of-the-mill academic lesson. Even though based on a true story and the tips are somewhat effective, some of the words are intentionally made to sound silly to lighten up the mood. But if your neighbors are seriously criminal, this is my recommended read: How to Deal with Bad Neighbors.

To Kill a Character

I’m supposed to write at least one blog post every month. I’ve read on Google that the smallest frequecy of blogging is once in every month. If you skipped that pattern, your blog will be as good as non-existent (unless you work hard on bringing it back to your fans’ attention).

Well, I didn’t plan for this post and can’t think of a good topic so today, I will be just like those other bloggers who like to write about their day. No, I won’t tell you exactly what I’ve been doing; novelists like to keep secrets. This will be about only a small part of my day.

For some backstory, I’ve been having this routine of watching random videos on YouTube before bedtime. My favorite videos used to be music videos, but since I joined Harvard, I developed a fascination for cartoons. I loved “Winnie the Pooh” while I was in my Greek Literature course and I liked “Invader Zim” when I was in Neuroscience.

I won’t mention the name of the cartoons that I’m currently watching (another secret), but one of the lead characters got killed off last night and I’m pretty bummed out.

I was just talking with another cartoons fan this Sunday afternoon and we shared our sentiments about how certain storytellers like to kill off the best characters.

When I write my stories, I don’t care that much about who dies. I’m more focused on maintaining the plot. Now that I know what it’s like to be on the receiving end of the storytelling, though, promise, I’ll think twice each time I kill a character. (My first public horror story, “Crab Mentality” had quite a reputation for having too many deaths.)

Have you been in a situation where your favorite character (book, TV, movie, etc.) died?

Writing Update

Dear readers,

 

How are you doing? I hope that you’re doing well.

I had joined the Camp NaNoWriMo this July 2014 and here’s the synopsis of my novel:

In order to live well, one has to have at least a little ray of optimism. They say, “Forget the bad things. Focus on the good.”

Stella had turned optimism into a lifestyle. Even though she had just been through the most traumatic experience in her whole life (she got kidnapped, but she escaped), she managed to forget it and go on with her cheerful life. But this decision just kept her from realizing that she knew more than she thought she knew.

One day, the counter-terrorism unit came knocking on her door. The agent was saying something like “Generations of Hesiod.”

After having struggled hard to forget her experience, Stella’s initial reaction was to force the unit to leave because those were the exact same words that her kidnapper had told her when he had taken her: “Generations of Hesiod.” She did not want to recall it all over again. Not again.

The agent kept knocking. Stella had to let them in.

The agent said that they had just found out that her kidnapper was connected to a terrorist who had been threatening to attack the city. When, where, or how; they didn’t know. Perhaps Stella can help them by recalling her moments with him in more detail? Because she never told the full story and she had lied about some parts of it to cover up the violence.

If there was anyone who was least capable of telling a depressing story, it was Stella. The most positive people can be the worst when forced to confront their demons. But was saving innocent lives really worth one’s sanity?

I reached my goal of writing 50,000 words before July 31, 2014. I finished on July 27, 5 days before the deadline.

JulyCampNaNoWriMo2014

After this, I will revisit my novel for Camp NaNoWriMo April 2014, “From the Human Chain,” to begin its editing process.

Thank you for dropping by my blog.

Good luck this coming school year and happy writing!

 

Sincerely yours,
Charlene

Kind of an ‘About Me’ Post

Dear readers,

How are you? I see some of you checking the “About” page of this blog from time to time, but that page has been empty. It seems that you are looking for an introduction.

My name is Charlene Delfin, author of “An Unknown Narrator.” My website is currently not updated on my works ranging from November 2013 to the present, but it presents my works prior to those dates. For now, you may get to know 75% of me on that website. I will add the other 25% when I get some free time.

I started this blog because my blog on Blogger wouldn’t load and NaPoWriMo was already starting; I had to post as soon as possible. This blog was created in an emergency. This blog can be about anything, but it will focus mainly on writing.

I successfully finished NaPoWriMo and these are the 30 poems that I wrote within the 30 days of April:

  1. The Past and the Future in a Jar
  2. Among Us
  3. Just Another James
  4. What to Do
  5. Pom, Pom, Pom, Pom
  6. To Hell with ‘Em
  7. Devil on a Leash
  8. Wireless
  9. High-risk
  10. From My Army Brothers
  11. Fiery
  12. The Other Cheek
  13. Crocodile
  14. Twirling Exclamation Point
  15. From Poet to Poet
  16. Look into the Mirror
  17. From Morning to Evening
  18. Circle
  19. Poetic Sleepiness
  20. Cold Air that You Feel
  21. My god Apollo
  22. Shobenuamasimern
  23. Secret Love
  24. Mightier than the Sword
  25. Round and Round
  26. The Reader
  27. To Die for You
  28. Writer’s Block
  29. Thriller Dreams
  30. Third Eye Testimony

 

I also won in Camp NaNoWriMo and this is my winner’s certificate:

certificate

I will be gone from WordPress for a while because I need to focus on studying. Hopefully, I can get back here before the end of 2014.

I’ll be putting my poems on Bubblews. Bubblews is a website where users get to post about a wide range of topics. Posts that are less than 400 characters are not allowed. Users also earn revenue with every view, like, comment and even dislike. I spend time on Bubblews because it does not take too much of my time and they have a friendly community.

See you again soon,
Charlene

Third Eye Testimony

A man of many names;
He came to me today.
Said he flew from the Thames
Thinking like Faraday,
But here, he will be free
To be a nobody.

He once lived in your own land,
Fetching water for him
And driving the unmanned.
He wasn’t who he seemed;
He got away with it.
He’s one man they can’t beat.

He is here and he’s there,
Day and night in somewhere
His pair of feet may care.

He was in their country
To declare their own fight.
If you think like a tree,
He had used their own might
And he left them for dead.
He’s from the Thames, he said.

Thriller Dreams

When you’re bored, then you sleep,
In your dreams, you will write
About mountaints so steep.
You will find Mr. Right
And he will make you jump,
Not over a low ramp …

Jump over the ravine.
Don’t you ever look down.
It’s what I really mean.
Jump, despite all the frown
That they’re giving you two;
They might wanna jump, too.

And there comes the sunrise,
Wake up and be so wise.
Today, write something nice.

At your desk, you will write
About mountains so steep.
She will find Mr. Right,
But you will make him slip
To make a good story;
For readers love worry.