Tag Archives: NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo 2016 in Review | The Second

Happy Monday, friends!

This is going to be a short one.

As most of you know, I have been busy working on my debut novella, Eléonore. I released the blurb yesterday and have gotten lots of positive reactions so far! I can’t express how excited I am!! Look at all those exclamation marks!!!!

With most of my energy having been devoted to finishing my last readthrough of Eléonore, I haven’t been able to dedicate as much time to my NaNoWriMo novel, The Desert Knight. I’ve gotten to 18k, which is decent, but not enough if I hope to be done by November 30th. But that’s okay because Eléonore is the focus right now and everything is going well so far. Still waiting for Murphy’s Law to kick in, though ;P

Here’s another excerpt from this week’s writing:

There was something beautiful about the sky that I never had taken the time to notice before. It was a magical sight to behold. I saw it in the divine creation I knew to be Rika and Kari’s doing. Worshipped as separate entities, they had also worked together at one time and so we were taught to be united as well. There were people who could look upon the stars and see more than distant lights shining. They saw in them the designs decided upon by the gods. They spoke to them of the past, other presents, and the future that still laid in wait for us. Despite the magic I possessed and my bond with Rika, I was not inclined to see those things. Sristi’s sight was not of the stars either.

-The Desert Knight. Faith Rivens. 2016

How is NaNoWriMo 2016 going for those of you who are participating? Let me know and we can cheer each other one! 

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith quill-ink


NaNoWriMo2016 in Review | The First

Hello friends!

On this Monday, the first of NaNoWriMo 2016, I’m changing up the usual Week in Review post to match 🙂

At the moment my total is at 8,951 words. It’s lower than it should be, but that’s got a lot to do with life and editing Eléonore! The latter is going extremely well, by the way. I should be done the edits today and I’ll be reading it once more through for any mistakes before sending it to my proofreader. Drawing closer to publication and it’s hard to believe that this is actually happening!

But back to The Desert Knight — my NaNoWriMo novel. I’m loving writing it right now and discovering my characters. Parvana is still developing as a main character and sometimes I find that I’m writing her with too much of Eléonore’s edge. When I find that happening, I make notes to go back and clean up her dialogue and inner musings. It’s happening less and less as I’m becoming more familiar with her personality. So that’s good at least.

It’s a first draft, so I’m attacking it as such, writing what comes without much filter, but I’m keeping notes as I go for problems in plot that I’m already noticing and scenes where I overstay my visit. I think one of my biggest issues right now is bringing the setting to life. The desert is such a gorgeous space to use, but I don’t think I’m doing it justice. To help, I have two books on my November TBR that are set in the desert: The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley and Throne of the Crescent Moon by Saladin Ahmed. Does anyone have any other suggestions for fantasy novels with a desert setting?

With edits finishing up on Eléonore this week, I’m hoping to turn more of my attention to The Desert Knight and hitting 20k before the week’s end. That’s the dream, in any case 🙂

For now, how about a small excerpt:

They knew me as Rikalasar. I was proud to be Rika’s serve, but I was also afraid of the reverence I garnered for it. 

Rikalasar was the mask of duty that I wore at night, to serve the god that had saved my life. My true name was Parvana. At one time I had been called Shara (daughter), Sestrys (sister), Nevalyn (niece). At one time I had been called Kivashik (kin killer).

– The Desert Knight. Faith Rivens. 2016.

How are your NaNoWriMo endeavours proving? Are you on goal? Falling behind? Share your experience! I’d love to hear about it.

And remember to believe in your stories, friends, and in your selves! You can do amazing things if you do ❤

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith quill-ink

Announcement Time | Nearing Achievement of a 2016 Goal

Happy Friday, friends!

I hope you’re all doing well, surviving NaNo if you decided to embrace the madness 😉

I have a big announcement. It’s the kind of announcement I’ve been waiting to make for a while… and when I say a while, I mean years.


Wait for it!

I am officially self-publishing my debut novella!

That’s right! I’ve been working a little crazily and I didn’t want to say anything until I could be sure, but with positive feedback from my beta readers I’ve decided to take the proverbial leap!

So December 2016, I’ll be releasing Eléonore as an ebook on Amazon, with hopefully a paperback version coming late December or early January!

Wait a minute while I pinch myself ;P

This post right now is probably coming off as a little rant of insanity, so apologies, but I’ve been excited to share this news for some time and I don’t know how to properly articulate just how pleased I am that I’m actually finally taking the plunge and sharing my first story with the world.

The next few weeks are going to be a little hectic, so bear with me if I disappear for long periods of time. It’s a lot to juggle, but I have such a supportive team behind me, which includes you, my fellow readers!

So many of my friends have published their books this year and they’ve inspired me with their perseverance, so to all of you — and you know who you are — thank you for sharing your journey  with me because I don’t think I’d be here right now if it wasn’t for you.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be revealing my blurb and cover for my little novella, as well as a more precise publication date. Early December is the aim, but I still need to finalize one thing before I can be sure of making this self-imposed deadline. When I know, you’ll know. 😉

For now, let me just remind you that Eléonore is an urban fantasy set in Montreal. It’s a novella of about 40k words and features Eléonore, a single mother who stacks shelves by day and hunts demons by night. Always the hunter, things get tricky when she discovers there’s a bounty on her head…

I’m signing off now! Have to get back to some last minute edits and writing my NaNoWriMo story (5565 words so far)!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend! Take care and keep pursuing your dreams!

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith   quill-ink

Beautiful Books 2016 | The Desert Knight


Happy Monday and Happy Halloween Friends!

November is fast approaching (aka: it’s tomorrow!) and with it comes NaNoWriMo!

In honour of it Cait of PaperFury and Sky of FurtherUpFurtherIn are hosting the Beautiful Books link-up, a change-up from the usual Beautiful People! But the idea is the same: ten question prompts to introduce your work in progress.

Today, I’m sharing one of the two books I’ll be working on for NaNoWriMo: The Desert Knight.

What inspired the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea?

The Desert Knight is set in the realm where Pirate Eyes is located. I loved the world I created so much that I started to imagine different ideas. I marked it down maybe five years ago, but only now realized that it would be a great idea to bring to life as another novella.

Describe what your novel is about!

The Desert Knight is the story of a masked vigilante who travels the dunes at night, protecting innocents from bandits and murderers.

What is your book’s aesthetic? Use words or photos or whatever you like!

If you want to take a look at The Desert Knight’s aesthetics, you should check out my pinterest board 🙂

Introduce us to each of your characters!

Our main character is a young woman named Parvana. She has a dark past and pursues justice as a vigilante in the night.

Nitareva is a young girl whose life will never the same after one calculated act of violence.

Daltan is a holy man who is devoted to the god Rika, and Parvana’s mentor.

Ghazeen is a famed warrior, dishonorably discharged for a crime committed.

Sristi is a soothsayer and a servant of the goddess Kari. She has been Parvana’s adopted mother.

How do you prepare to write? (Outline, research, stocking up on chocolate, howling, etc.?)

All of the above 😉

In truth, I mostly focus on developing my characters, getting inside their head and creating a general plan of action for the plot. With this one, I’m focusing a lot on researching too, focusing on the culture, religion and magic system of this Dalosian desert territory.

What are you most looking forward to about this novel?

The ensemble of characters that will support Parvana on her quest. I really love this cast. They remind me a lot of Keira’s crew mates in my Pirate Eyes novel. The same bunch of loveable misfits 🙂

List 3 things about your novel’s setting.

  1. Arid and dangerous.
  2. Lush and exotic.
  3. Restless and changing.

What’s your character’s goal and who (or what) stands in the way?

Parvana’s goal is to protect the innocent residents of the desert from the injustices of evil humans. Think that covers the who (or what) as well 😉

How does your protagonist change by the end of the novel?

I’d like to imagine that Parvana succeeds in recapturing a bit of the innocence she had previously lost but we’ll have to wait and see…

What are your book’s themes? How do you want readers to feel when the story is over?

The main themes are the loss of innocence, the bond of family, the search for justice.

I hope that readers leave the story feeling thoughtful and satisfied, maybe a little sad, but mostly hopeful.

Okay, that’s it for today’s post 🙂

NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow and my days are going to be packed writing The Desert Knight and editing Eléonore! Look out for an announcement on Friday by the way! I have some exciting news to share 🙂

And if you’re participating in NaNoWriMo, let me know what story your working on. You can find me under the username faith_therivens! Let’s join forces and conquer this month together!

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith quill-ink

A Quick Update | 18.10.16

Hi Friends!

I have to apologize for the late post. This week is kind of a crazy one, but all for good reasons. I’ll just get you up to speed…

With Eléonore: I put the final touches on my second draft this past weekend and have sent it out to beta readers! The feedback I get will determine what happens next but I’m hoping for positive responses 🙂

Now, this week I’m putting Eléonore on the backburner and turning to a different project. For the past two months, my sister and I have been working on pre-production of a short film. Well, filming is taking place this Saturday and so this week is going to be a little hectic (to say the least).

For that reason, I’m going to be a little quiet around social media until next Monday. I have my WWW Wednesday post ready to go for tomorrow, but I might not be commenting around.

I’ll be back next week, though, and hopefully with lots of great things to share! Next week will also be the start for me for NaNo prepping my sequel to Pirate Eyes.

Until then, stay well friends and take care!

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith   quill-ink

This Week in Review | The Thirty-Second

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving Friends!

And Happy Columbus day to my American friends 🙂

Hope you’ve all had a lovely weekend and a great week!

I’m in the thick of editing Eléonore right now, and I’m about to have family over for some turkey and mashed potatoes and rice and gravy and stuffing and cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie and pecan pie and…. mouths watering yet 😉

But I’m taking a moment first to tell you a bit about how my past week has gone!


Actually, all my big highlights of this week are writing related.

I’ve managed to rewrite two scenes of Eléonore–they were my biggest stresses, so with that done I’m tackling some of the minor changes that need to be made which includes small plot holes and inconsistencies and terrible dialogue 😛

Anyway, I’ve also started to outline two new novels (one is the sequel to Eléonore and one the sequel to Pirate Eyes)! As I’ve been doing this, I have come to a rather big decision…

Friends, I can officially announce that I will be participating in NaNoWriMo 2016! I had so much fun writing Heritage last year and I can’t wait to write another novel this November. I’ve decided on which it will be as well…

Hollow Vows (Book II in the Cerastone Quartet). AKA sequel to Pirate Eyes.

My hope is to finish writing the sequel and start editing it in 2017 while shopping Pirate Eyes around and trying to pick up an agent/publisher. We’ll see where the road takes me, but for now I’m excited to continue Keira’s story 🙂

There’s not much more for me to say, but I’ll leave you with a small excerpt from Eléonore! The opening lines…

There were demons to kill, but first I needed a cup of coffee.
The nearest café offered a variety of frappés, lattés, and mochas, but all I needed was a good strong, dark roast black from my usual Timmie’s. An extra three blocks of walking was worth the bitter brew that steeled my nerves and jolted my brain. One sip was enough to get the juices flowing. Three more and I could feel the anticipating building. Ready and willing to slit some throats.

– Eléonore

One thing I love about writing Eléonore is the setting. Holly really inspired with her Infernal Hunt series in which she masterfully paints an image of Prague. I hope to capture the same sort of realism as Eléonore works her way through the streets of Montreal and Vieux-Québec.

Speaking of Holly, if you are particpating in NaNoWriMo you should really check out her blog series where she talks about prepping for the thirty day challenge. She has such insight to offer. It’s a true gem! The link to the first one can be found here: NaNoWriMo Prep.

How was your week? What projects are you currently embroiled in? Anyone else planning to participate in NaNoWriMo this year? Share your aspirations and achievements in the comments!

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith quill-ink

Camp NaNoWriMo Update 3

Happy Monday everyone!

Hope you’re all well and that you had a relaxing weekend!

This weekend was a little busy for me, but I still managed to get some things done. One of those things being…

I finished going through the hard copy of my Pirate Eyes manuscript and now all that’s left for me to do is type up the necessary changes! And then it’s ready. And I’ll be on the lookout for beta-readers by the end of this week *fingers crossed*.

I’m really happy with how this story has progressed since I first started writing it back in December 2006. The characters are more pronounced, the plot flows better, the conflict is more present. At least, I hope that’s how it reads.

On another note, I have decided to submit to #FicFest. I debated it for a while, but it makes sense that I should give it a try. A big thank you to Sara Beth at Life, Love, Writing for convincing me to take the leap. Better to try and get rejected then never try at all, because then it’s like rejecting myself. And I never want to do that!

We’ll see where that goes, but in the meantime I’ll be shifting gears to polishing two screenplays and starting the large revisions needed for the second book in the series. Which means taking the second half of the original manuscript and making it flow like a sequel. I expect hard work. I also expect lots of fun!

Question: What’s the most daunting edit/revision you’ve ever had to do on a story?

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith     quill-ink

Camp NaNoWriMo | Day One

Good Evening Everyone,

Today marks day 1 of Camp NaNoWriMo. I haven’t been able to devote as much time to my edits as I wanted to today, because this weekend my family is hosting a big party that requires a lot of preparation. It’ll make it difficult to set aside the time I want to until Monday, but I’ll steal whatever time I can get. I managed to reach the end of my Prologue at least. All 1,883 words of it!

My big focus this time around is on finding the bothersome sections and marking down my reasons for them: plot holes, repetitious, not enough conflict, unnecessary scenes, even lines that just seem off in terms of language.

I’m also making general notes on character and plot development from scene to scene to be sure that there are no plot holes, enough development, enough foreshadowing, etc.

There’s a lot to do, but I want to do it well.

Here are just a few pictures of my writing station pre-edits which also provide a few small snippets from my prologue if you take a close enough look. It also gives a glimpse of my series title 🙂




I’ll post more tomorrow before the party!

Best of luck with your writing pursuits this weekend.

If you’re participating in Camp NaNoWriMo this April, then I wish you all the luck in achieving your goals 🙂

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith quill-ink

Day of the Divided Draft | The Last

Good day one & all!

This was supposed to post earlier, but I forgot to schedule it for the 31st. Luckily the mistake has been caught. And it comes to you now 🙂

The title of this post is a little ominous isn’t it. But it’s not what you think. Or maybe it is.

Perhaps you’re thinking that I am giving up on the WIP that has driven me for the past 10 years.

Perhaps you’re thinking that these posts are to be forever discontinued — after all, they’ve been on hiatus for quite some time.

Perhaps you’re thinking that I’m giving up on writing completely.

If you think any of the above, be assured none are true — though the 2nd does have its merits.

No, the truth is, I am calling this THE LAST of the Day of the Divided Draft posts because from this day forward, I will be referring to my WIP by its chosen name, one that was established 10 years ago. One that I have no intention of giving up.

Why am I sharing this now? Why not earlier?

Well, I’m glad you asked 😉

For those of you who have followed me thus far, you know that the Divided Draft is a term I coined to refer to my WIP as I recently undertook the arduous task of splitting my manuscript in half. This decision was not made lightly. In fact, it was one I only undertook after some months of heavy consideration. In the end, I realized that the story was too large for one novel. It had already been planned as the first in a larger series, but it still didn’t justify the overstuffed plot.

It’s been a good nine months since I made that decision and I’ve been working on it ever since. There had to be a lot of new writing to fill up this rejuvenated first book and the month of November I took off to write a whole new book because I felt myself falling into a slump. Best decision I ever made doing NaNoWriMo — but more on that in a moment.

Anyway, this past Monday (March 29th at 5:25pm) I finally finished the latest draft, thus completing for the first time this new version of my first book. And so it seems apropos to finally name it.

Are you anxious to know it yet? Well, here it comes…


Wow. That feels liberating. And yet scary.

Disney cute turtle robin hood toby

I don’t know if this is the big announcement some of you were expecting. I hope it doesn’t come as a disappointment.

The other point I need to mention is that this April I’ll be participating in Camp NaNoWriMo. My goal is to finish a last edit of this book. With 134k words to go through, I’m expecting a lot of work, but I am also really excited to get started! I have a brilliant cabin of talented writers to support me on the way — thank you Mollie 🙂 . I love the idea of encouraging each other through our individual projects. I mentioned how NaNoWriMo really reinvigorated my writing during a slump and I hope to find the same inspiration in April to help me reach my ultimate 2016 goal: being published 🙂

I’m all set for tomorrow. I have the day off work, but I’ll be busy with some family matters so I’m not sure when I can schedule my editing. With 134k to go in 3o days I’m looking at an average of 4,466.7 words a day of revision….

television sesame street elmo faint fainting

Well, not really. I have a very specific way of editing, but that’s a topic for tomorrow’s post.

I don’t have much else to say except that I’m hoping to post every day about how my progress is going. I’ll try to make it fun and interactive, but please forgive me if I fail in both regards.

I’ll just leave you with one more thing. The premise that got me a query request:

As a pirate, Keira’s horizons are endless. But when evil threatens her ocean home, Destiny wields her as its sword to fight it.

Okay, one more thing…

After stumbling upon a sunken ship, Keira, a young pirate marked by her purple eyes, discovers a destiny beyond her imagining. Now, she must learn to embrace powers bestowed upon her by the gods in order to combat the growing evil that threatens the freedom of her ocean home.

That’s a bit of a longer logline. 😉

Now I’m really done!

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith quill-ink




NaNoWriMo: Day Thirty

Hi everyone!

Can it be? No, surely it’s impossible. And yet it is…today was the last day of NaNoWriMo.

It has been quite a thrilling November and one of my most amazing ones in past years. NaNoWriMo helped me achieve so much. Not only did I reach and surpass the  5ok mark, but I rediscovered my passion and motivation for my writing 🙂 And truly, it is the latter that I am most happy for, that is the true success. It’s about being able to kindle that passion and flame and using it to pursue my dream! I hope that you were also able to discover that this month.

I’m closing off NaNoWriMo with a grand total of…..78,291!!! 

Screenshot 2015-11-30 22.06.11

Today’s word count: 2,665!

My first and last sentences of day:

Her grandmother’s face was taut with anxiety.

They would consume all the light and in their wake silence would fall.

I tried hard today to reach the end of my novel, but I didn’t quite make it. But that’s okay! I was going to be upset with myself, but then I reminded myself that I can still finish it and will this week. I have about 5k to go before the end. Maybe even less.

In any case, I’m just proud to see how far I’ve gotten and can’t wait to finish my first draft–I’ll continue to keep you posted until I’m done.

Today’s narrative saw Peggie thrust into the Act 3 climax. I had to stop midway through it, just because I’m really tired and I have to be up early tomorrow.

I’m dreading writing the end of this a bit, only because I’ve been wavering lately between two endings: one happier than the other. I keeping leaning towards the bittersweet one. I’ll see which way I finally go when I get there.

I hope that — if you participated in NaNoWriMo — you enjoyed it as much as I have.

Let me know what is the most important lesson you’re taking away from this month’s experience!

Remember to always believe in yourself and your words. Your stories are unique and beautiful. So are you!

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith   quill-ink