“You can write one word, even when you are at your darkest.”
– Neil Gaiman
Hi! I’m Millie Ho, a YA neo-noir writer from Toronto, Canada. I use this blog and my YouTube channel to document the journey to publication and the writing lessons learned from interesting TV shows, books, and films. I also discuss media representations in an evolving entertainment and arts landscape.
I’m working on a Long-Suffering Manuscript, and throughout the process have experimented with odd writing methodologies, edited my many drafts into bloody, perfection-driven pulps, tweaked and re-tweaked characterizations and suffered a creative burnout of such colossal magnitude that I sought shelter in a foreign county and quit blogging for months before digging out the keyboard again.
Then I had a wakeup call and changed my writing process entirely.
A brief timeline of my writing history:
- 2005: Wanted to write a book after reading Philip Pullman’s The Golden Compass.
- 2009: Spent my last high school summer break churning out a 77,000 word novel that would later get rejected by literary agents for “lacking a strong voice”. Decided to hold off on submitting anything until I improved and found a story worth writing about.
- 2010: Spent the bulk of my university years strengthening my writing skills by competing in writing and poetry competitions and, occasionally, winning them.
- 2011: Saw the movie Drive. Realized, after watching Ryan Gosling’s nameless vigilante character drown a mobster in a lake, that neo-noir fiction was my life’s calling. The signs were clear—I just had to see them.
- 2012: Worked on a creative thesis project and wrote a Young Adult neo-noir book for the first time. This book will become the Long-Suffering Manuscript (LSM) I am working on to this day.
In 2013, I graduated from the University of Western Ontario with a Honors Business Administration degree. I am now working in a retail consulting firm, and lead a double life where I devise business strategies by day and hack away at the LSM at night.
As of May 2015, I have finished plotting a solid novel skeleton and am stitching on the meat. I’m writing more honestly and deliberately and am starting to see the patterns responsible for why some stories succeed and others fail. In short, I am enjoying the writing process immensely, and whatever improvements I make are simply a bonus.
So here’s to continuing the journey, spilling new blood, and reaching the destination half-alive.
Thank you for coming along!