Monday, January 20, 2014

Showcase: Amanda Wikoff: Writing Evolution

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Like Jillian, I haven't had the opportunity to talk a huge amount with Amanda. However, she gives the impression of a sweet, bubbly young lady full of joy and excitement. Lover of hot chocolate and red nail polish, Amanda likes to blog about spotting authors in coffee shops, among other things. This is also Amanda's first guest post, if I remember correctly, and I think she did a marvelous job. Thanks so much for being with us today, Amanda! 


How has your writing changed in the past year?

I’m going to be answering a question a friend asked recently: How has your writing changed in the past year? She thought it would give perspective and maybe even be encouraging and it sure has been! I hope you guys find this as encouraging as I have!

First, let’s take a look at me in January 2013. I was barely writing. The only time I did write was for school and that always came begrudgingly. In January 2013 I had this theory; this theory that there are two types of people: people who write and people who do math. I was pretty convinced that I was a math person.

Fast forward to March. My friend got a writing curriculum called One Year Adventure Novel. She was very impressed with it so I looked into it. I’d always known I had a story to tell, if only I could’ve written well enough to get it down! After I researched a little I decided it would be worth it so I begged my parents to buy it for me. After I had given a rather convincing argument about the educational values of writing a novel, they said no.

Then comes April. My friend had started the curriculum and I was following her, answering the questions and reading the lessons with her. I had a notebook dedicated to my idea and I was writing down the things my friend told me about the parts of a novel and character development. It was all coming together.

By the middle of May we’d gotten through most of the planning. The only problem was, she was about to leave for vacation. She would be a world away and we wouldn’t be able to work on it together, so what did I do? I did it without her. I couldn’t help it! By the end of the month the whole novel was planned out.

July creeps up and my family and I were preparing for our own vacation. I had finished the first draft a while ago, already having commenced the first round of edits and I’ve decided to take a flash drive with me and leave my computer behind. I was well due for a break but I stubbornly decided to keep going.

By the end of August I was fed up with the story. I hated it beyond all things and was ready to move onto the next exciting idea. I left it on the flash drive and I haven’t opened it since September 16th.

November rolls around I’m doing NaNoWriMo. I had planned all of October and had anxiously awaited the 1st so I could start writing my new idea. I soon found out that 50 thousand words in a month is grueling, but I finished strong on November 26th.

There was a slump in December where I hardly wrote anything and now there’s January. I’m currently planning two novels and going through the first round of edits on the novel I wrote in November.

I’ve been extremely encouraged to be able to see how far I’ve come as a writer in the past year and I hope you’ll be encouraged by it too. How has your writing ‘career’ changed in the past year? What are you looking forward to in the coming year? (Anyone have book releases coming up in 2014? I need new books! :)

Thanks for having me visit and be sure to check out my blog at Ramblings of a Wayward Author.

Amanda Wikoff is a young writer who’s slowly making her way towards publication. She’s written one novella, one full novel, and a handful of short stories. She’s currently in the process of planning two more novels and fighting off the ideas that come to her daily. She enjoys breaking clich├ęs and stereotypes in her writing and can’t wait to see her work on a shelf. Amanda blogs frequently over at Ramblings of a Wayward Author and enjoys it beyond measure. 

Thanks again for stopping by, Amanda! It was a pleasure! Please remember to leave Amanda some love in the comments. Also, don't forget to enter the giveaway going on right now as part of this week's showcase!



  1. Thanks for having me! I loved doing it! :)

  2. It's funny, at one time I wanted to be a writer. I loved daydreaming, and creating new adventures to write about. And if I look at it from your earlier point of view, I would have to be a writer, because I'm horrible at math! But somewhere along the way, I decided to pursue other things that I deemed myself to be better at, and haven't written, daydreamed, or read much since. I think I lost something when that happened. But I can't put my finger on it. Anyway, what I originally meant to say, is that I found some of my old writings a few days ago and suddenly that desire to write flared up like a match to kindling. I've said all of that to reply, this is indeed very encouraging!

    I really enjoyed reading about your writing evolution! I wish you the best with your future novels!

  3. Thanks for sharing, Amanda! As a writer myself, it's certainly fun to see how much I've evolved over the past year. At the beginning of 2013, I hardly found time to write. I enjoyed writing, but I didn't prioritize it in my life. It was also a struggle to come up with ideas. Now I write something almost every day, whether it's a chapter in my novel, a poem, or a journal entry. Ideas come to me more freely now and I've been making extra time in the day to fit writing in. When I look back at my work from earlier this year, I notice that my writing abilities have evolved, too. In 2014, I'm especially looking forward to finishing writing and editing my current novel :)