Give in order to get

I go on Wattpad infrequently. For a social networking site, it can be pretty quiet. I don’t have a lot of readers or friends there but if there’s ever a story in my head, Wattpad is where I go to write and release them. It’s the safe haven for writers and readers.

On the flip side, there’s a lot more activity when I become a reader, not a writer. Through this, I learned that you’ve got to give in order to get.

My reasons for giving are pretty shallow-I want more readers and followers. I’m giving with the intention of getting something in return. I can’t change this about myself or force myself to not want these petty things.

So what’s the solution?

Stop reading because I’m doing it for the wrong reasons?

The only problem with this is as a writer, I do get something out of reading. After all, if you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the tools to write.

stephen king.jpg

But what frustrates me about giving is feeling lonely. Everyone is looking out for themselves. Even saying “Hello” on someone’s wall is always followed by, “please read my book”. They’ll only talk to me if when replying to a comment that I write on their book. When is it my turn to feel the spotlight, the glory, the recognition.

And yet, going undetected can be a good thing. As I’m learning the hard way, I’m not ready to have beta readers. I’m still writing and that’s a long process that takes dedication and intrinsic motivation, not comments and reactions.

Another benefit to giving is that I enjoy the giving. Even as I am frustrated with waiting for my turn that may never come, with waiting for reciprocity that again, might never be realised, I enjoy reading. I’m not reading any stories for the sake of popularity. I’m reading stories that interests me. Stories that are exciting, gripping and turns their own pages.

After I write this post, I’m still going to have my frustrations, my impatience, my loneliness, but I will remind myself that I’ve got to give before I can receive. And truth be told, If I’m not reading a lot, then my writing isn’t going to be so good either.

So, I know this might be cliche, but really, who’s giving who? The reader or the writer?

 

 

 

 

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Lizards, transgenesis and magic

As you know, I’m participating in April Camp Nanowrimo 2019 and I’m working on a story that I’ve already written. But don’t get yourselves in a twist or outrage. It’s not a long story and as much as I do like it, it has plenty of problems.

A lot of problems. You know how I wrote a checklist of things to do before you write? I didn’t do any of that the first time I wrote the story (let’s call it, “first draft”). As a result, I have a huge problem on genre.

My story follows a character named Dustin, who lives in a world different from us human beings. There’s a light side governed by the sun and the dark side, governed by the moon. This is 24/7, meaning that one part of the world never gets evenings or nights and the other part of the world never gets mornings or days. You can see, there’s a bit of fantasy element to the story. But unfortunately, there’s also sci-fi as well.

I mean, of all the two genres to accidentally mix, why did I choose sci fi and fantasy?

Gaaaaargh!

Do you know what Transgenesis means? This is a type of bio-science that does exist on Earth, but in this other world, the science is a lot more advanced. Transgenesis can happen on a whole new level-the “humans” can mix with “animals” creating hybrids. We can also clone “humans” too.

I’m writing like “this” because since this is on another planet, they’re not exactly humans.  Well, except they ARE human-like except for the mutations.

So, not only do I have aliens on another planet who are humans, but I’ve got science that I don’t understand and an under developed world as well. But, these are early days and one point of Nanowrimo is to write as much as possible. It’s about getting it written, not right. My dilemma is then really, that I want to have by the end of this month, a story with lots of wild imagination and crazy ideas, but also a story that I can READ and work with.

The first draft (current story), is small. I can read it quickly, but I can edit as yet because I haven’t finished creating. Anyway, that’s my writing woes at the moment.

Any thought for advice for me?

Maybe if I pushed through, it would be okay to have a fantasy novel with sci fi elements to it. But…magic. Ugh. Should there be magic in there too? I suppose, as long as I would read this story, it’s okay if not one else does. Haha. If it fails, I’ll post the story here, for a good laugh and to let you all in on what NOT to do when writing a story.

 

 

 

 

 

ten days into Camp Nanowrimo, here we go!

Hi all! I’m sorry for the late post-Camp started over a week ago. But I thought to dedicate the rest of April to camp. -tips, hints and advice on surviving camp whether you win or lose, and also my mediocre advice on writing.

Seriously folks, you should not be coming to me as first choice for advice on writing. But I’m glad you’re here anyway and I’ll try my best to impart my knowledge and wisdom, without sounding like I’m just saying good common sense that any writer would know anyway. Here we go!

Before you even start to write, you need to tick off everything from the checklist below. It’s best to do these things the week before camp starts but if not, that’s okay. Just do it as soon as possible.

Checklist before you write:

  • set up a profile on Camp Nanowrimo
  • Do you want “cabin mates” or do you like to bunk it alone? -Note on cabins: It’s not really that fun in my experience because everyone’s so busy writing their story that they might not reply to you or give you advice. It’s just generally not really a good time. It’s best if you have friends whom you know and arrange a cabin with them.
  • Set up the story on Camp Nanowrimo-eg. Do you have a title, a little synopsis (optional but interesting), a word count goal. I suggest a range between 20 and 100 K words. I’m attempting for the first time, 100k word count goal because I want my novel to be a fully fledged novel, and because I’m cheating a little bit in that I’m writing on top of a story that I’d already written. (more on this later).
  • What’s your genre? Use this time to research both for the content and plot of your story, but also your genre. If you write in a specific genre, then you have rules to follow. These rules can limit and squash you, but they can also be used as restriction to play around and work with. It depends on your outlook. In my experience, a little direction goes a long way in creativity.
  • Who are your characters? -normally for any kind of nanowrimo, you don’t need to plan a lot, if at all. But it does help in the long run (because it can be a very long and gruelling month), if you have an idea of who you are writing about, why and for what kind of audience. Just saying, it helps in the long run in terms of, getting back on track, concentration and motivation. You will probably trip over yourself at some point this month but with a bit of planning written down, you will have more chance to trip over yourself less.

So there you have it! My quick checklist of things to do before you write. And really, no matter when we write, whether it’s during Camp Nanowrimo or a normal month, we should plan ahead, at least a little bit. We need to have knowledge before we write, otherwise, we’d be using things we’ve seen in the movies. Those movie plots don’t make the best books.

What’s your checklist? Is there anything you would add or take away from the list? What’s your checklist of things to do before you write a blog post?

 

 

10 things you should know about biblical theology

  1. One out of a thousand- There are so many kinds of theology, it’s crazy. Biblical theology is only one kind of theology. One out of many ways to look at, approach and interpret the bible.
  2. Story focussed- Biblical theology is following the grand story of the world. It’s a meta narrative. It’s a large story composed of smaller stories. Every book in the bible contributes to the grand story-yes, even Leviticus.
  3. Forest for the trees-We’re looking at the big picture. We’re looking at the trees and how they link to the forest. In other words, why did God allow the Hebrews be subject to slavery for 400 years? Why did God stubborn Pharaoh’s heart? Biblical theology asks and reflects on these questions in light of the bigger story of salvation and redemption.
  4. Themes-like any good story, the biblical story is told through the lens of themes. you can tell the biblical story many times because there are many themes to look at.
  5. The Theo Combo-Biblical Theology is not just one kind. It is a mixture of systematic, historic and biblical theology. Yes, it’s true. You do need to be a bit systematic when telling the story in the lens of a theme
  6. Many themes-and only some include-Covenant, redemption, salvation, God’s people, temple. For my class, I wrote an essay, framing the story in the lens of the covenant theme. I’ll do the same for the others themes to in order to broaden my understanding and yours too.
  7. Grace-When you can see the bigger picture, the one story from Genesis to Revelation, then you will know Grace. When you know Grace, you will worship God. You might even go so far as to bow down and break out in tears. This is because Grace produces true worship. And there’s a lot of grace in the biblical story.
  8. We’re all in the story
  9. A ministry tool
  10. All Christians are theologians

Why teachers shouldn’t talk

Dear teachers,

Please don’t tell my son,

to be quiet, silent, still, and unmoving on the mat.

He can’t.

It’s not because he has ADHD

It’s not because he’s a boy

It’s because this method of teaching is ineffective.

 

If you know that teachers teach the way they were taught

then you’ll know that this is a bad way to teach

Do something else

Stop talking

Start listening

Stop lecturing

start learning

 

Don’t tell my son to be quiet or to be still

don’t punish him when he doesn’t comply

Have you ever thought that maybe he can’t?

Maybe nobody in the entire world could possibly

listen to a woman (or man) speak for 45 minutes in one go

Is this a corporate meeting? Or a place of learning?

 

Don’t tell my son how to behave, how to respond, or how to act

Show him through good modeling

But don’t make an example of him

 

Let me tell you something about my son,

my son is not trouble,

misbehaved,

improperly disciplined,

naughty or mean

He’s actually a lot like me.

He just wants to talk

and I say, he should be free to do so.

 

Some STT time for once (student talking time),

not TTATT (teacher talking all the time)

Don’t live in the 19th century,

we’re innovative now

This is the time for creativity,

technology,

expression,

and talking in class.

 

Please note:                                                                                                                                          Of course, there’s a time for teachers to talk and students to listen. But I think the whole, “be quiet because I’m talking” is very old school and shouldn’t be part of an innovative classroom.

 

 

 

 

Poems on cooking

Monday:

I bought noodles for two dollars. Had the noodles for my lunches and dinners.

Tuesday:

I bought mushroom and lettuce. Lettuce in a salad bag. I cooked the lettuce last. Why did I cook the lettuce? My good friend made chicken soup. I poured most of the soup into my bowl to wash down the flavors.

Wednesday:

I eat and feel nauseous. It’s because of many things, overeating, chicken powder instead of sauce, too much salt, and cooked lettuce. I’m not a rabbit. also, why do rabbits eat lettuce?

Thursday:

Sweet Hallelujah. I bought soy sauce. Cooked my last batch of noodles, bee hoon. Economic noodles. For students because it’s so cheap. For people on a budget. It was delicious. I was happy.