Have you ever sat down to work on your writing project and thought, I’m not into this like I was three months ago? And how you want to dedicate your time to a work-in-progress that you actually care about? Or do you feel as though you’re working on a project and it feels forced? Are you asking yourself: should I save or delete?
Here’s what we have to say: don’t abandon a project simply because you’re not passionate about it. Some writers burn themselves out trying to write what they think needs to be done. Other times, it’s a lack of inspiration. What should you do if this happens to you?
Our favorite suggestion is take a nap. All jokes aside, rest your brain and focus on other activities you like. Napping could be one of those things. Don’t question if you want to save or delete a project. If you’re ever leaning towards the delete option, we recommend still saving the work someplace where you can’t visually see it. Mainly because if you stumble across it later on, you may spark new interest and inspiration.
Bottom line is: give yourself a break. Stop thinking too much into it. Save it. Don’t delete.
Bake – Kujira | Japan
“Ghost whale that is accompanied by bizarre birds and unknown fish.”
- Another name for the bakekujira is honekujira, which translates to “bone whale.” They pretty much are undead whales who are followed by weird looking birds and funky fish.
- They can be found in the sea of Japan. The people will see the ghost whale on rainy nights, off the coast…of whaling villages. See where we’re going here?
- What powers can this haunting whale possibly have? Legend has it, when you see the whale, you’re cursed. Usually what happens is, someone will become cursed, return to their village and the village will suffer at the hand of the curse. Plague, famine, fires…any disaster you can imagine. Prepare.
- Do you remember the yōkai from our last post? The bakekujira is one, too.
- There are some explanations as to why the legend came in to existence about this whale. Someone has said it could have been an enemy village, creating a fake whale to haunt the fisherman out at sea. There is another idea about a whale carcass carrying disease to a village and not a ghost whale.
We’re not saying there are fake endings floating around in the writing world but what we are trying to say is realism is a wonderful way to end a book. Seriously! To remind your reader their head shouldn’t be in the clouds will have them feeling a lot.
Take a moment to think about a not-so-happy ending you read and stuck with you. There’s a reason why you remember it…it’s memorable due to being different than all the rest. We also want to mention: these endings don’t have to be sad, necessarily. Just real.
Sometimes people like the chaos and fire-burning-everywhere ending to a book they’re invested in. Or the cookie-cutter romantic, hero saves everyone at the end of the day. It’s about preference.
Or shock value.
This week’s mythological monster is a day late but well worth it! This week’s highlight was one for the books and a new one even I hadn’t heard of.
Keep reading if you want to hear about a bolt of cotton that will smother you to death if given the chance.
Ittan-momen | Japan
“Sentient roll of cotton that flies through the night and suffocates people.”
- In Japanese mythology, the ittan-momen is a Yōkai, more specifically a Tsukumogami. A yōkai is a supernatural spirit in folklore while a tsukumogami is a tool that has been possessed by a supernatural spirit. Haunted items…spooooooky.
- These spirits are more likely to be found in Kagoshima.
- The type off cotton possessed is also what can be used to make clothes. Check your labels!
- “Ittan-momen” literally translates to “one bolt of cotton” or “one tan of cotton.” It gives the idea of what the measurements are of the item (28.8 cm by 10 m).
- Believe it or not…the ittan-momen has been adapted plenty in Japanese modern culture. Shows (anime, primarily) and monuments have been made in appreciation.
With the end of year in sight, we tend to highlight expected sales trends of the upcoming year. We’ve seen high sales in politically-driven pieces, success behind female leads, and diversity taking the reigns.
Say hello to our oldest and dearest friend, Escapism. Too dark? Fear not, we mean well with this. Listen here: escapism isn’t a new concept. It’s been around forever. Since entertainment conception came to fruition, to be exactly. It’s a drive for many to pick up books and escape to another world, where chaos can be mended.
To say the least, the consumption of books may rise when we think about what’s going on whenever we turn the news on. With this chaotic day and age, there may be an interest in any genre, really. As long as there is provided escape to a new world.
Help provide the escape for potential readers. Provide the bridge between their reality and your fictional world. Get to writing.
Gumiho | Korea
“Nine-tailed fox that freely transforms into a beguiling woman.”
- How does the fox become the woman? It lives a thousand years.
- The goal of the gumiho (also called Kumiho in Korea) is to seduce boys and lure them off to eat their organs. They focus on primary organs, such as the liver and heart.
- Since the legend of the gumiho originated in China and also has a sister legend in Japan, the gumiho is differentiated by the item it carries. The gumiho keeps a marble of knowledge but it’s also used to help drain human energy. If a human steals the marble…they gain knowledge!
- Even though they can turn into a woman, they maintain fox-like features.
- Hoping for some good news? If the gumiho doesn’t kill or eat any humans…they’ll become human. Don’t forget…they’re spirits, not actual animals.
Originating in Japan, the visual novel has made quite the impact on interactive reading for tweens, teenagers, and new adults.
A platform designed for artists and storytellers, visual novels take reading to a new level. Some stories revolve around custom characters, while others don’t. The storylines vary but the biggest genre here is romance.
By teaming up with graphic designers or digital artists, authors can create a version of their story which would appeal to those who like visuals accompanying their story or travel down the similar route as Harry Potter. (We’re talking about the game released where you become the witch or wizard, in case you missed it!) Building the world for your readers first and building a fanbase, may make transitioning to visual novels much easier. They don’t all have to be romance stories; they’re just the easiest genre to get into!
Dokkaebi | Korea
“Impish spirits that transform from inanimate objects.”
- Also called Korean goblins, they like to play tricks on humans (or help them – it can go either way.)
- Physical descriptions of the dokkaebi can be found on ancient roof tiles but are usually frightening to look at.
- Into wrestling? So are these spirits! in order to pass them, you should be able to wrestle your way out of their clutches of evil! Their weak spots include their right side and (some of them are one-legged) a simple push will get them down.
- There are different types of dokkaebi. To be frank, there are nine common types.
- Sometimes, rituals are hosted to get in the good graces of the dokkaebi but other times.
Pixiu | China
“Winged lion that words off spirits and attracts wealth”
- The Pixiu is a protector of those who practice Feng Shui.
- A creature well associated with wealth; it is also associated with Earth and Sea elements.
- There are male and female variations of the Pixiu. They’re referred to as Bìxié (male) and Tiān lù (female). The Bìxié is known to be in charge of the wealth, while the Tiān lù shoos off bad spirits.
- In terms of the wealth they bring in, they are picky. The prefer gold, silver, and jewelry.
- As years have gone by, the Pixiu has maintained their love for wealth. Statues are often used in the practice of Feng Shui and the philosophy is: wealth will come. They’re also used in Jade pendants in modern jewelry.