Thursday, May 30, 2013

Guest Post by Scarlett Van Dijk: Sky Stone--Starting the Journey

Guest Post:

SKY STONE – Starting the Journey
Skyla, a social outcast from an ordinary town in the 21st Century, is transported to a Medieval land in the midst of war, where magic is a part of everyday life. Finding herself empowered with magical abilities she must fulfill a destiny decided by the gods, a destiny which will test her limits to the full. How can she cope with these new pressures and how can she possibly succeed?

The idea for SKY STONE came to me while listening to music ("Breakaway" by Kelly Clarkson to be exact). At first, I would merely spend time imagining scenes, creating characters and twists to the story while daydreaming. Eventually, the day arrived when I thought, Hey, maybe I'll write this down. That is when my journey began. Originally, I intended to write a novella, planning to submit it to a competition that year. However, as the word count climbed above 20, 000 (the word limit for the competition), I realized that I was actually writing my first novel.

Facing a difficult period of time in my life, I began writing. I didn't have many true friends who I could count on to stand by me, and I tended to be introverted, hanging out in the library. I kept my emotions bottled up inside, but with writing I found a release. Skyla, my female protagonist, often reflects how I was feeling at that time and is therefore portrayed as a little moody. Perhaps I should apologize to her? However, the times when my emotions were at their most extreme were when my creativity truly took hold. So, when I finished my first draft not only did I feel relieved, but I also experienced a sense of pride and accomplishment that I had not felt before.

The first time I allowed somebody to read my story I bubbled with anxiety. I asked myself questions like: "Is it good enough?" "What if she doesn't like it?" "What if she says something bad about it?" All this accomplished was producing feelings of confusion and insecurity. Hence, for years I only allowed my closest friends and my mother to read my drafts. I now realize how silly that was. By allowing others to read SKY STONE I received valuable feedback that has caused me to edit, change and rewrite aspects of the story multiple times. With the help of all these people I now feel SKY STONE is close to completion (well as close as is possible without having a professional editor).

The next step… getting published!
Scarlett Van Dijk

Feel free to check out my website and blog here:
Or find me on facebook ( or twitter (@ScarlyRose)

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