Monday Blogs – NaNoWriMo Thoughts

I admit… I went from not knowing if I would participate in NaNoWriMo this year, to getting inspired for a brand new story that’s not in my “Story Ideas” folder in my Google Drive.

I’m also sort of excited about it, and the character backgrounds are already beginning to formulate and come together, especially the male character – who my brain seems to add layer upon layer already.

The characters aren’t the only exciting thing I want to play with, it’s the relationship – a May-December relationship that I’ve always had a fascination with, with all the stigmas and notions that come from it – I want my characters to explore that, to find love despite odds and their friends and family disapproving of them. I’m already falling in love with the characters myself, so I feel extremely inspired – yet cautious.

They are still, unfortunately, locked away in my head, and I know if I start opening up that file and jotting stuff down, I’ll fully commit myself to NaNoWriMo and then I might freak out from the pressure.

In addition to that, I’m already starting to feel guilty that “new story” is occupying brain space when I should really be working on Killer Orange editing, which has stalled unfortunately thanks to freelance projects and a busy September. October is starting to look just as crazy – at least on the weekends.

Once I chew through all the anxiety (which is another matter altogether), I really feel I should commit myself to Killer Orange. If I can do that in a month’s time and still manage to begin NaNoWriMo, then I’d consider that a huge, productive achievement.

Fingers crossed!

From Grammarly — Who Writes Better: Men or Women?

Extremely interesting.

Live to Write - Write to Live

Grammarly ( conducted a study with 3,000+ participants to settle an existential question that has been plaguing mankind for centuries (or maybe a few years here and there):

“Which gender has the better writers?”

They published the results to the question above in an infographic (below) and I got permission to share it here with you. I thought it would be fun for some discussion.


The results for characters question splits out equal from both perspectives — I think it’s only natural that we include bits of ourselves in our writing, since that’s a person we know best!

Pronouns & Determiners are pretty evenly split, too.

What do you think about the plot vs character and long vs short sentences? Would you put yourself in the majority in those categories?

I would for the first – I like (try) to develop my characters and have the plot follow. For sentences, I…

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Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

Someone at my Livejournal blog (which I keep specifically for fandom and personal rantings) posted about what characters in fiction share your Myers-Briggs personality. I admit, I had to take the test all over again because I did not remember what I was.

(If you don’t know either, take the test here.)

I’m an INFJ (Introverted, iNtuition, Feeling, Judging) which according to several internet sites is a rare personality type among the 16 types.


Here is INFJ in a nutshell:

INFJs are creative nurturers with a strong sense of personal integrity and a drive to help others realize their potential. Creative and dedicated, they have a talent for helping others with original solutions to their personal challenges.

The Counselor has a unique ability to intuit others’ emotions and motivations, and will often know how someone else is feeling before that person knows it himself. They trust their insights about others and have strong faith in their ability to read people. Although they are sensitive, they are also reserved; the INFJ is a private sort, and is selective about sharing intimate thoughts and feelings.


This describes me to a T, and actually it’s a little frustrating to see myself so plainly spelled out, but it made me think that perhaps a lot of my stress and woes really tries into my nature of wanting to be everyone’s counselor and fix everything in life that’s broken. Maybe I do care a bit of a superman complex as well, or at least a person so blindly dedicated to a cause.

And yet when I posted my results on facebook as well, I noticed at least three more INFJs, which makes me wonder if we really are that rare, or that it really is true about INFJs when it comes to friendship, that we’re very particular and like to collect friends with perfectly aligned interests.

I thought it was interesting. Here are the famous people that are also INFJs that I like:

Mohandas Gandhi, Eleanor Roosevelt, Emily Bronte, Carl Jung, Florence Nightingale, Shirley MacLaine, Jimmy Carter, and Edward Snowden.

And then of course, here are the fictional characters that I know which are also INFJ:

Yue and Roku from Avatar: The Last Airbender
Paige Matthews from Charmed
Bruce Wayne from The Dark Knight
John and Anna Bates from Downton Abbey
Walternate from Fringe
Peter Petrelli from Heroes
Merlin from Merlin
Anthy Himemiya from Revolutionary Girl Utena
Christine Chapel from Star Trek: The Original Series
Kes from Star Trek: Voyager
Ezri Dax from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Ianto Jones from Torchwood
Jasper Hale from Twilight
Phil Coulson from the Marvel Cinematic Universe
Obi-Wan Kenobi from Star Wars
Allison Argent from Teen Wolf
Amy Pond Doctor Who

Find your fictional character personality types too HERE.

What personality type are you? Does it fit you?

Have a good weekend!

H.K. Rowe

Writer’s Workspace

I’m finally getting to this, but I was tagged by Leigh Michaels to show my writer’s workspace. Sometimes I can write pretty much anywhere as long as there’s a good environment, like in my spot on the bed or on the couch. I have a hard time with distractions, so couch-writing doesn’t seem to work out much anymore, especially with the TV on or the husband trying to make conversation. Writing is like reading to me, which means I dive into another world. Only my body is left in the real world after that… You might as well talk to a tree.

My main space is my studio. It’s our second bedroom in the townhome. It was always meant to be mine since hubby took over the basement for his mancave, and that’s fine. The house came with pink carpet in this second bedroom, which really seemed to fit me.

Here are some shots. 🙂

The window, along with stacks of art and writing stuff. What can I say...

The window, along with stacks of art and writing stuff. What can I say…

Being an artist and writer takes up a lot of space, let me tell you, but I guarantee everything is organized!


photo 3


Surrounded by books, books, and more books. And fannish things. It feels  like home…

photo 4

More books and my helpers. Malachy in front, my schnauzer/beagle mutt, and then Whiskey, beagle, on the go.

photo 1

And then the computer where all the writing happens. It’s hard to tell but I have my self-publishing manifesto framed on the right. Marilyn Monroe graces my walls. It’s more of the “Marilyn Room” than my studio, but she was so ahead of her time, so independant and carefree, that she inspires me.

This is where 90% of my writing happens. I can shut the door, put on Spotify, and with sleeping guard dogs at my feet, I can travel into other worlds.

I’d love to tag Aether House for this. And anyone else who wants to do it and follows my blog.

Looks like I caught a virus. I think that it’s finally getting out of my system, but things are slow. At least I can properly formulate thoughts now…


HK Rowe



Writing Blues

Real life continues to monopolize my time away from productive writing. I don’t know if everything I’m going through is supposed to be a challenge to that or what.

I’ve been sick for the past few days with a bad cold. I’m still getting over it. I’m hoping to get the energy and mental capacity to bring 100% to my edits. Until then, I just rest and let the medicine do its magic.

Work starts again tomorrow and I know I’m going to get pounded with work. Mostly because one coworker has left and I’ll be getting his work, plus the responsibility for looking for someone to replace him. Ugh. The trials of working for a small company. You get to wear many hats.

At least I have Doctor Who. Yes! I’m a huge Whovian. I can’t help it. The show is my balm to all my life’s trials.

I still plan on doing a Goodreads giveaway. The editing is just taking FOREVER per chapter. I suppose it’s good that it’s such a slash and burn. Something better has to come out of all that effort.

Until next update. Cheers.

HK Rowe

Friday Fun — Books I Can’t Stand

I thought this was a great topic for Friday!
Check it out!

Live to Write - Write to Live

Friday Fun is a group post from the writers of the NHWN blog. Each week, we’ll pose and answer a different, get-to-know-us question. We hope you’ll join in by providing your answer in the comments.

QUESTION: Is there any genre of books that you just can’t stand reading? How about a particular author? Time period? 

wendy-shotWendy Thomas – When one is a writer, one needs to tread very gently when being critical of another writer’s book. We have first hand knowledge of the blood, sweat, and tears that went into it’s birth. I truly hesitate to damn anyone’s work. Having said that, let me say that the books that get under my skin the most are the ones that are:

  • Predictable – saw that ending coming from a mile away
  • Poorly written – repetition, poor dialog, and poor editing
  • Written as a script – seems to be a trend in…

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Character Fodder: Writing Jerks

It’s been a frustrating September beginning. Ten days in and my edits for Killer Orange are going slow, and even though the fault is my own, I can’t take the full responsibility when real life rears its ugly head.

I have been absent from blogging because of my anxiety, a condition I have had to live with for several years. They have been less frequent since I moved over to my new job, but once in awhile panic attacks come back with a vengeance, mostly with a partner in crime – the migraine.

So I have a health excuse. My anxiety flared the moment I learned we’d have to deal with an selfish, uncaring neighbor who has let her toilet leak into our garage for over two years, something she was supposed to fix in the first place. Well, here we are, working on getting 2 years of black mold removed from above our garage. Whether or not spores have migrated into our house remains to be seen, which is another part of my anxiety of having to pay for unexpected tests that are not my fault.

Long story short, this neighbor is the WORST to deal with. She wants to fix our garage the cheapest way possible, she refuses to talk to us over the phone, and she warned us to NOT talk to her tenants that are living in her mold invested condo. Of course, the situation has escalated to barbs, yelling and name calling – and the worst is when she told my husband she had wished he had died from the mold “if he was so allergic”.

The rest of the story isn’t important. It’s a rant for another day, but it got me to wonder about characters, about how we write or imagine up despicable characters to become part of this story. Lately I’ve seen a trend of redeemable villains. I like that trend.

What I haven’t seen much in my own writing are the despicable just merely being despicable. Maybe it’s against my nature to think that some people are just terrible and have no softer side, have no love in them and are irredeemable.

Dealing with this land lady neighbor has changed my perception of that.

There’s basically nothing I can do to combat her. I can’t write my way out of this situation. There is no fiction here; there is no protagonist that can appeal to the better angels of a real life character who just happens to be a nosy, heartless cheap-ass.

I have to ride the choppy waves of dealing with this lady, and I can pray that this situation doesn’t get worse. I can hope that we will finally be done with her, and she will fix our stuff. I can hope she does something kind for once and takes responsibility for her own problems without creating ten thousand more.

Maybe I’m expecting too much from her, but feeling powerless in appealing to her better nature irks me. It pokes at the anxiety, yes, but it just aggravates me that as an adult, she can’t be reasonable.

The only thing this lady has inspired me to do is use her.

I’ve seen an article floating around, I think by Cracked, where writers have gotten their revenge on real people by using their names and personalities into their stories.

I definitely agree with this sort of coping mechanism. Some things are just out of our control in the real world, when writing lets us play a sort of god.

And on that side note, being in sales and just my personality in general, I’ve been able to talk my way out of many sticky situations before without much fallout. In this situation, it seems I can’t.

So… you crazy ass diamond neighbor lady, I hope you enjoy your reign of terror on my anxieties and energies. Someday, maybe you’ll be somewhat famous. You’ll become the terrible plot device to move my story along, the first body on the scene of the crime, or the annoying character that just had it coming from the beginning.


It’s definitely the best solution I’ve come up with for dealing with such people.

I encourage other writers to do it (even if you haven’t already). It’s a great form of therapy.

H.K. Rowe

The Liebster Award


Thanks for Aether House for nominating me! I didn’t expect this but here goes. This is my first time being nominating so I’ll try my best.

1. Do you have, or have you had, a medical condition that altered your way of life?

I have chronic migraines and panic attacks. I’ve medicated for almost a decade. It definitely stalls my ability to function sometimes. Most people are pretty understanding when I have one.

2. How would you describe your dream home?

A little suburban 2-story house away from a busy street with a big back yard, fenced in with a smattering of tall trees, somewhere where I can make an altar and do a couple gardens. Inside I’d like to have 4 bedrooms with a full basement. 3 bedrooms are for the hubby, me and kids, and the 4th bedroom will be my study. The basement is for the hubby. I’d like the yard to be big enough for all the dogs I’ll have some day. And honestly, I’d love it if I had awesome, reliable neighbors.

3. What is your favorite hobby? Why?

Probably doing fan stuff, fan fiction and fan art. It helps me escape and cope with a lot of my anxiety. I just love indulging in my favorite worlds and characters when life gets rough.

4. What piece of clothing can you not live without? 

Shoes, comfortable shoes. Probably sketchers.

5. How do you feel about marriage and having kids?

I’ve been married to my best friend and other soul half for 6 years and counting. We want kids but no more than two. I’d like to have one of each, boy and girl, but I’ll leave that up to the Divine. I never thought I’d want kids, but I would love to have little minions and experience motherhood as a sacred stage in my life.

6. What book-to-movie adaptation are you’re dying for Hollywood to make? I’m talking about books that haven’t yet been made into movies, of course (so no Mockingjay!).

I’ve always wanted them to make the Hollows series by Kim Harrison. It’s such a great urban fantasy series and sorely under-rated. I’m surprised Hollywood hasn’t snatched it up yet. I think it’s better than the Sookie Stackhouse books, and that series got an HBO series. Rachel may just be too much of a strong, independant heroine for TV/movies to handle!

7. Do you live in the moment or do you plan for the future?

A little bit of both. Probably more for the future. It’s hard to be patient though.

8. Favorite class in college? (or high school, if you didn’t go/haven’t yet gone to college)?

Writing non-fiction. I not only learned some great writing tips, but I met my husband in that class.

9. Best and worst part of attending weddings?

Best part – the food, drink, and speeches. I love hearing the stories of how people have met and how their friends feel about their spouses.

Worst part – Church. I do not like church or long ceremonies.

10. Tell me about an awkward or embarrassing moment you’ve had.

Ah, there was this one time I was messing around with one of my boyfriends and I was laughing and teasing him about my bra size and then accidentally slapped him in the teeth. Haha. Oops. I think it hurt.

My Nominees:

Leigh Michaels, Dr. Bairavee, Books A to Z, Rachel in the OC, Edgy Author, The Dog Ate What? (my sister), The Skinny Girl Inside, Rachel Zellers

My Questions:

1. Do you have any relations to any famous people or famous historical figures?

2. If you had unlimited money, what would you do with it?

3. What’s your favorite mobile app? Or most used mobile app?

4. Describe your perfect day.

5. Do you have any career regrets? Like do you wish your career was something else?

6. What book or books changed your life and why?

7. If you could be president for one week, what would you do?

8. What are your least favorite qualities in a person?

9. Favorite dessert?

10. Do you have any special projects you’re working on like writing, art, or other crafts? If so, what are you doing?

Click the cut to see  the rules and my questions to the lovely ten bloggers above!

The rules?

1) Post the Liebster Award graphic on your site (sorry, my work computer wouldn’t let me do this).
2) Thank the blogger who nominated your blog.
3) Answer the 10 questions from the post of the person who nominated them.
4) The nominee will nominate 10 (I’ve seen some rules that are 5 -10) other blogs who have less than 200 followers (I’ve seen less than 1000 too).
5) The nominee will then create 10 questions of their own for their nominated bloggers to answer in their Liebster post!

The Editing Landscape I

I admit… I have barely touched “Killer Orange” since I got it back from my Betas. I have thought about it, and I have even raged about it. I’ve pulled out Elements of Style and reread it. I have started reading other guides on character development and writing tips.

After all that, I was fully prepared to start editing Saturday and then I decided to rest. I slept, and I started to feel very anti-social, down in the dumps and just anti-everything. Sunday I napped more, I cleaned my house, and then I went to a friend’s party. I had a friend tell me how cool it was that I published a book and how they were proud for me. 

I felt good and Blessed, but I also felt like a coward for waiting to work on my edits.

Today was Labor Day so of course I had no work. My mother and I went to the Renaissance Fair in Bristol, WI and enjoyed ourselves. I think my mom was really happy to go because I wasn’t sure I could go this year, not when I was pushing myself with getting my book out and having it be delayed anyway. Regardless, my mom was happy that she could go and wouldn’t be alone, and I felt like maybe delaying my book was meant to be. We HAD to go to RenFaire this year, and it was almost fated. Last year when we went, my father was still alive. He had stopped chemo treatments and could have a beer again. He bought my mom a big sword she really wanted. He was the happiest I’d seen him for most of the year. It was bittersweet because we knew it would be his last RenFaire yet he was so happy.

Two months later he was gone. Everything changed. 

So we had to go this year. 

Maybe I felt like this weekend was a break. I had a lot of time to reflect, and when I was feeling ill and tired, I took time for myself to relax. I utilized the true meaning of a Labor Day weekend. 

Tomorrow I have to go back to work and also, I have to go back to editing “Killer Orange.” I need to face that computer screen, open that file, and deal with reality.

If I can move on for my father, then shouldn’t I move on for myself? I’m the one who still has a chance to accomplish something. I’m the one who has to battle different fears, which are so trivial in comparison of what many people face everyday.

I’m the one who has to actually DO something instead of saying I’m going release a second book. I need to make it happen. I need to face it, and I won’t get there if I cling to fears and let the demons win.


H.K. Rowe