VIPKID Vibes: Now on Instagram

I’m not sure what possessed me, but I made an Instagram account just for VIPKID. My plan for now is to post some pictures of rewards I use and anything else VIPKID related. I’ll also post a link to any new blog posts. I can’t guarantee I’ll keep up with this, but I’ll give it a try.

You can find me here: @vipkidvibes

This is strictly for VIPKID, so if you have a VIPKID themed Instagram, I’ll give you a follow. 🙂


If you’re more into cats, follow my cat instead: @meowingmocha

AND because I’ve completely lost it, I’m starting a writing Instagram too: @laurenseewrites


Thanks for spending some time here. What am I doing with my life?
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Finding My Story a New Home: Part 2

Update:

I had to cut ~3200 words from a short story to meet the word count limits of the magazine where I’m submitting.  I don’t know if you’ve ever done this, but it ain’t fun.

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It wasn’t bad at first. It was actually pretty easy. There was some questionable content that had to go, so that was at least 1k. Easy.

Then I had to start cutting lines I really like. Really, really like. I had to keep telling myself, I still have the original story saved. It’s not like it’s gone forever. And this is necessary if I want the story to have a shot. It didn’t make it any easier, but it gave me a push at least.

The last 200 words or so… absolute hell.

But I did it. My grand total is now… 5938

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Finding My Story a New Home

I’ve spent days–no, literally days–researching different literary magazines. Let me just say… whoa.

First of all, who knew there were so many? Well, probably everyone.

There are many factors to consider when you’re looking to submit your writing: print vs. online, word count limits, reading periods, reading fees, accepts reprints or not, circulation size. It’s exhausting.

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Short version:

I have three short stories I’m trying to see in print. One of them is new, so I have virtually no restrictions and many places to chose from. I sent my first attempt last week. Fingers crossed.

My second story is a reprint, but it’s average length and “literary” so I have some options here as well. Sending my first attempt this week. Fingers and toes crossed.

The third one… you have no idea. #thestruggleisreal

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Continue reading

My Short Story is Officially Published!

And here’s how I feel about it:

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It’s not every day you see your name in a book, let alone alongside something you wrote! I’m pretty stoked about it.

Anyway… here she is:

And if you’d like your own copy–because yours truly is in it–here’s the link:

America’s Emerging Literary Fiction Writers

My story is called “Dad’s Room” and writing it was quite an experience. In the wake of writing a different short story (one that I’m hoping to see in print at some point), I thought I’d try another one. “Dad’s Room” was what I ended up with. I wrote the first draft-of-sorts in one day. The only reason I’m sharing this is because I’m a turtle writer. My novel took years before I could say it’s finished. Maybe it’s because I had a due date for this story, I don’t know. But I cranked it out.

I thought the first version was pretty good, but a few awesome folks at Scribophile showed me the error of my ways. 🙂 So the third version is what I submitted. It’s a different tone from my normal writing. Maybe. Most of the time, I think everything I write sounds the same. (My blog posts are like a Lily-Tyler combo. It’s weird.) It’s not as funny. I’ll put it that way.

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If you end up reading my story, I hope you enjoy it. It’s such an honor to have anything I’ve written chosen for publication. Thanks to Z Publishing for the opportunity, thanks to my writing buddies for helping me fix Dad, and thanks to the other writers featured in this anthology for deciding to submit your writing–without you, there wouldn’t be a book in the first place. Congrats to you as well! You’re published! 🙂

My previous Z Publishing reaction: I Have Writing News!


Thanks for spending some time here. Have a great week!

I’m an Emerging Writer Again! Pub Credit #2

Ladies and gentlemen, I have an announcement.

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My story, “Dad’s Room,” will be published in Maryland’s Emerging Writers. This is my second pub credit and my second year in this anthology! I’m super proud of myself. This story took a lot out of me and was certainly a departure from what I usually write. Plus, it was one of those, “I don’t know where this is going” kind of stories, but apparently, I made it work.

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While my first short story acceptance remains one of the coolest moments in my life, this time is just as sweet. Speaking of, either this week or next, I’m submitting my first short story (my first pub credit) to an online magazine. I’d love to see that one in its entirety. I feel like I owe it to my MC, Seth. That’s weird, but I don’t care.

More details about the 2019 Maryland’s Emerging Writers Anthology to come!

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EDIT:

It’s here! My Short Story is Officially Published!


Thanks for spending some time here. Happy writing!

If An Agent Called Me, I Would Die

Happy Writing Wednesday! Here’s a glimpse into the insanity that is my writing life.

If you’ve spent some time here, you know I’m querying a novel. The process is so slow I’m not going to remember where I saved the document if an agent requests it. Know what I mean?

I get that agents are busy, but since I’ve been stalking querytracker.net like it’s my job, there’s one agent I submitted to with an average of 100 days to respond to a query. Um.

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I’ve been pretty lucky so far with my wait time. And although rejections sting, it’s nice to get it over with. For the sake of my pride, I’ve decided not to share my exact numbers with you, but when something worth sharing happens, I’ll be sure to post it. I will say, my first rejection this round hurt like hell, but they’ve gotten so much easier. #thebrightsideofrejection

I have a problem I’m trying to convince myself is not a problem. My book is too normal. When I started it, #ownvoices wasn’t a thing. At least it didn’t have hashtag. But now that’s all you see. My cast isn’t the most diverse–because the setting isn’t. It’s a small town, not NYC. And no one has any defining disability or anything. Had I known when I started writing this that I would try to get it published, I would’ve thrown something in there. But that’s the thing. I feel like so much media now is just checking off boxes. Like, let’s see, Asian? Check. Interracial couple? Check. Homosexual? Check. Anxiety disorder? Check. #forshame

The other problem I may have is the heat level. I mean, it’s probably PG-13 at the most. Sexy time scenes are not in my arsenal. I know there are agents out there who would like my book, but I don’t know where they are! I just wish I could send them a collection of Matt Bomer gifs, and say, “By the way, this is Mark Peterson.”

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Wait. What was I doing? I’ve been looking at gifs for the past 20 minutes. Continue reading

Writing a Story After a Long Break

2/25/19

I’m writing again! Woot!

And let me tell you, I forgot how hard it is to write a story. Wowzers. Yesterday, I had a brainstorm and came up with an idea. I had a beginning and an end. Everything in the middle was a giant, crushing question mark, but since I had my last sentence, I was committed.

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This is the first story I’ve ever written that I’ve known the ending ahead of time. And it’s so much easier that way. Man, I wish I would’ve known the ending of my novel when I started it. That would’ve saved me so much time and heartache. Continue reading

The Query Queazies

On this wonderful Writing Wednesday, I’d like to document the following:

I sent two queries today.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to vomit.

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Coming Soon: Part 2 — The Indomitable Inbox


Thanks for spending some time here. #dreambig #makeithappen

Twitter is Confusing

Happy Friday! It’s Friday Feelings. Time to rant. OK, not so much rant. More like…make an observation.

Today’s topic: Twitter. Settle in, folks.

Now approaching minor to moderate snark. Heavy at times.

I joined Twitter back in 2016. Why? Not because I wanted to. I didn’t know much about Twitter at that time, but I saw it a platform to write random sentences and post for the world to see. Like who cares?

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I did it because I was part of a group called “Query Bootcamp” in my writing group, Scribophile. One of the tasks was to create an author platform. Twitter was on the list. I still find it odd, pretentious, and backwards to have an “author platform” when you don’t technically have a book out, know what I mean? Again, who cares? You’re a nobody. Who would follow you? You’re just a “writer” from the middle of nowhere suburbia.

But I did join. And it was actually fun. I started posting in these daily writing games. Which, come on, “games”? Who are we fooling here? These games amounted to posting a line from your WIP that fit the theme/word of the day. It sounds lame as I see it written out, but it was cool. 3 reasons. 1) It helped streamline your writing. A tweet was only 140 characters back in the day, so you had to make each word count. I can be a bit longwinded. Shocking. This helped me tighten up my sentences. 2) It gave me more confidence as a writer. Granted, I wasn’t hitting it outta the park, but those likes or comments made me think, hey, maybe I don’t suck after all. Awesome. 3) Reading lines from everyone else somehow–in my mind, at least–made me a better writer. There was just something about reading these one-liners that helped me up my game. Super thankful for that. There are some hella talented writers posting on Twitter.

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I kept up with posting daily for, I don’t know, 2 years? Give or take. I was getting new followers every day, which was cool. Somehow, I made it to 5k subscribers. Yeah. Let me pause here. I’m not saying this to toot my own horn, because trust me, I don’t even OWN a horn. I’m humble to a fault–especially on the writing front. But this follower count is what I find so confusing, and the main reason for this post. Continue reading

Songs of Awesomeness Part 3: iPod Mini Edition (O-Z)

I’m back with the highly anticipated Part Two. ICYMI: Songs of Awesomeness Part 2: iPod Mini Edition (A-N)

Let’s dive right in.


*Pete Yorn “EZ”

This makes me feel kinda sad, but only because of the truth in the lyrics.


Placebo “Every You, Every Me”

His voice is weird, no? And the song gets super repetitive. I think they ran out of lyrics. But it’s still worthy of this list.


Pixies “Where is my Mind?”

Commentary for this? No. But it makes me think of a certain parking lot. And a ripped Brad Pitt.


*Postal Service “Sleeping In”

This isn’y my go-to sound, but it’s Ben Freaking Gibbard. I have a thing for Bens, I realized. Gibbard…Folds…Burnley…Franklin. Continue reading