Vlogging and Blogging and the Writing in Between

Hi, reader-peeps.

I’ve uploaded 9 videos to YouTube since July 27th.


I know it doesn’t sound like a lot. But that’s a vlog almost every week. That’s a weekly plan, film, edit, upload.

And I absolutely fluffing love it.

As I said in my last post about vlogging, in some ways, vlogging isn’t all that different from noveling. Except that it is different.

Vlogging is probably better compared to short story writing. Sometimes short stories (at least in my experience) can be written quick, edited quick, posted somewhere quick. It’s a very fast turn around, much like vlogging. And my inner need to get things done and not delay gratification very much appreciates this.

Markiplier GIF - Markiplier Mark - Discover & Share GIFs

If I were trying to make a full length film or even something longer than twenty-minutes, then maybe that would be more like noveling. But most of my vlogs have been under ten minutes.

That being said, I have by no means mastered editing film. I’m getting pretty good at cutting and adding captions and stuff, but I haven’t messed with lighting or much of sound and I haven’t figured out rotoscoping at all. I still have a long way to go, but I have learned a lot so far. I’ve learned about the camera and the editing program and myself.

For example…

  1. I say “um”, “so”, “anyway”, and “and” way too much. Most of the time, I can cut it out. Most of the time.
  2. I also jump from one sentence to the next very fast. If I decide I like the first sentence and not the second, this makes cutting difficult.
  3. I talk with my hands. I might have to start sitting on them. Or taping them down.
  4. The webcam works, but not with the fancy video editor.
  5. The best camera is the old iPhone, turned on it’s side. But I still haven’t figured out where I’m supposed to look. I can look at myself on the webcam. I think I have to look at the lens on the iPhone and that’s hard.
  6. I might need to invest in an actual camera and tripod at some point.
  7. Having two different video editing programs on your laptop is hard on the CPU. I can only have the editing program open while editing and exporting/rendering goes faster if they’re still the only things open.
Or your program might crash and this will happen.

One very important thing I have learned is to have fun. You can do whatever in your vlogs, but if you aren’t enjoying it, there’s not much point. I don’t mind humiliating myself on camera as long as I’m laughing about it.

(Which brings me to a somewhat promotional segway– I made a video of me reading some of my old writing. You can find that here. It is amazing to see how far I’ve come in writing. It’s also very cringe.)

There’s one more thing. Vlogging is a creative outlet that takes up creative energy. I like to think of creative energy as one of those things that you have a limited supply of. It does get refreshed, but you really can’t control when it refreshes or when it dries out.

And I have a lot of creative outlets. I write. I vlog. I blog. I do creative projects for Ch21Con. I knit. I crochet. I bake occasionally. I want to do all of these but I haven’t quite figured out how to spread them and still be motivated for all of them. And these days, with my schedule potentially getting increasingly busier and scarier, I’m forced to choose.

I have gotten to the point where I don’t blog unless I have an idea. I’ve started sharing my opinions more in vlog form or tweets than here. On top of this, I feel like the age of casual blogging has died. I am not getting many followers anymore and next to no comments. There is no interaction. It’s just me, cathartically talking at the screen. I had hoped to monetize this blog eventually, but I don’t think that’s very likely now.

Am I shutting down Spiral-Bound? Not yet. But I would expect the posts to continue to be sporadic, at best.

If you want to hear my opinions and thoughts on a more regular basis, my YouTube channel is here and it would mean the world to me if you subscribed.

<3 hand heart <3

Thank you to each and every one of you for following Spiral-Bound. It means a lot that there are actually nearly 300 people who do (or at one point did) want to hear what I have to say. I give you all virtual cookies. ❤

(No, literally, my blog gives web cookies so this is your friendly reminder to check those cookies and maybe delete the stale ones off your computer.)

Don’t forget to be awesome.

Kate out.



Song Lyric Crossover Poetry

Sometimes you gotta bleed to know
That you’re alive and have a soul
But it takes someone to come around
To show you how

You, with your words like knives
And swords and weapons that you use against me
You have knocked me off my feet again
Got me feeling like a nothing

A simple complication
Miscommunications lead to fall out
I’d tell you I miss you but I don’t know how
I’ve never heard silence quite this loud

But I don’t wanna live that way
Reading into every word you say
I don’t really need that though
Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

But even if the stars and moon collide
I never want you back into my life

Thanks for the memories

But if you think that I’m still holding on to something
You should go and love yourself



(disclaimer: songs not mine, lyrics belong to their respective composers, consider this crossover fanfic because i’m honestly not trying to steal anything here ~Katie)

Thoughts on Vlogging: An Behind the Scenes Look

Hi, reader-peeps.

This isn’t just a link to my newest video (though here it is, if you want to watch it).

This is some thoughts on vlogging in the few weeks I’ve been doing it.

So, if you watch the video above, you notice that it has some weird audio/video bits where the video pauses but the sound keeps going. And I honestly have no idea what caused that. Something happened in editing that causes the video to do that.

I honestly did not anticipate or realize all the hard work that went into not only filming a vlog, but also planning and writing and editing and uploading a vlog.

The 36 Worst Love Matches For You, Based On Your Astrological Sign

Let me take you through a little step by step of what I generally do for the vlogging stuff.

  1. Have an idea. I need to have an idea before I turn that camera on.
  2. Write a script. This step is actually entirely optional. I sometimes write down what I’m thinking to get my thoughts down and a general idea, but I found that reading from a script makes it really awkward. So my script is actually more of an outline and I absolutely do deviate from it.
  3. Actually film the thing. This is several clips and several takes and me getting distracted by the potato trucks going down the road as I film. This is me starting it and then realizing that my camera angle is really bad or what I just said actually sounds like an innuendo or I just trip over my words a lot. So I take a second to recollect myself and possibly restart the camera and then go again.
  4. Import stuff onto my computer and into folders. I like to keep things neat and know where the clips for a certain video is. It saves so much time.
  5. Edit. Editing video is perhaps the most interesting and the worst step of this process. This is the part where I realize I took a tangent that wasn’t necessary, my hair looks awful, and I licked my lips in one weird spot and I’m not sure I can actually edit it out. This is the part when I’m reminded how much I hate my own voice and I have to watch this video a million times to make sure all of it is right. And yet, this is also a step I love. This is where everything comes together, where everything becomes maybe not quite the perfect video I imagined, but the one I’m making for myself and for fun. It turns out fun even if the video is amateur. I’m not good at editing yet, but I hope that time and experience will teach me.
  6. Exporting and Uploading. The part that is mostly my computer and not me. I add video description and an endcard and choose the thumbnail, but most of this is me waiting on my computer to do its job.
  7. Plan the next video. The cycle starts all over again. I try to do this every single week.

Okay okay I love these amazing dorks so much you guys actually have n… #fanfiction # Fanfiction # amreading # books # wattpad

That’s my process and honestly, it’s not that different from noveling, except that I can novel with other people in the room and I can’t film unless I’m alone. Vlogs are just another creative outlet.

One very important thing I’ve learned in this is not to obsess about numbers. Yes, I’d love to be a famous YouTuber but even the famous ones started small. And if I’m constantly obsessing over how many views each video has, I’m not going to be happy. I’m probably actually going to be very discouraged.

☆~Ella birak~☆

The only number that matters to me is One. If there is one person who watches my videos and enjoys them, I’m going to keep making them. Even if that one person is me.

Resultado de imagen para septiplier gifs

Now, this doesn’t mean don’t advertise and market and I’m still trying to figure out how exactly to do that without coming off as annoying or cheesy. But this is a learning process and I love it. I would jump on the chance to do this professionally.

Anyone else a vlogger? What does your process look like? Tell me all the things in the comments!

Kate out.


Is writing worth it?

Hi, reader-peeps.

Recently, a friend sent me an article called I’m Not a Writer. Don’t ask me how the guy wrote the article if he’s not a writer.

Summed up, the author says that he’s never felt compelled to write and if he never wrote another word again, he’s be just fine with that. And yet, he still wrote this article.  He has articles and whatnot published and some self-published books. This guy wants to share ideas, but writing itself is not something he enjoys.

Reader-peeps, this scared the crap out of me when I read it. Especially when I read the part about how he could never write again and he’d be okay with that.

She was such a great character. wish they’d done more with her. She was an amazing character! So much vivaciousness and personality in such little time. I wish...

I have been there. I have wondered things like “do I even want to write? would I be happy if I did something else and never wrote again?” This is not to say that I wouldn’t still be sharing ideas in some medium, but Bob-darnit, peeps, writing novels is HARD. I used to turn out a novel at least once a year. They weren’t “good”, per se, but they were full stories and I adored them and loved writing them.

I haven’t finished a novel since October 2016. I feel like I’ve said this before here on this blog. If I did, I probably also said that this scares me. I feel like something in my writerly brain broke and it was the part that allowed me to think of a story I loved enough and had enough belief in to finish.

Liv and Maddie

I have had thoughts about not writing anymore. To focus my creative energy elsewhere. Somewhere besides books.

But something doesn’t feel right when I don’t write.

There’s a quote that talks about enjoying having written more than the actual writing. Creating and sharing ideas is compulsion, writing is just the medium.

But I don’t think that’s true for me.

I’m happiest when the words are going down on paper at 1,000,000 words a minute and when I’m done and have managed to write 2 or 3k in a day, I’m drunk on storytelling. The creation of real story and life literally puts me in a bit of a daze and I can’t write any more that day but I am kind of just wandering around the house feeling accomplished and a bit delirious.

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I’m happiest when I see the thing I have created, even if it’s a first draft, and it is done and it is beautiful and it is mine. It has so much potential to become something great and to be loved by people who aren’t me.

I am just as happy during the journey as I am when I get to the destination. When I’m done, I feel accomplished, but I’m also almost immediately looking for my next project.

Do I have the urge to get words on paper? Occasionally. Do I usually have to make myself get offline to get started and whine through the first 100 or so words? You’d better believe it. But when I go back later, to edit or just read for fun, and I look at it and think “I wrote this?” or I print a page out and it feels like my words are tangible and I almost cry from it, that’s worth all the griping for 20 minutes as I make myself spit out 200 crap words. That’s worth all the writers block, the “help I don’t know what I’m supposed to write here!”, the tears, the sweat, the diet coke, the considering of asking friends to help, any and every doubt given through the process.

Writing is worth it. And I am going to keep writing until I am old and my plot bunny pen is completely empty. I doubt it will ever be completely empty, though.

And if other people don’t enjoy writing enough to do it all the time, fine. I do not shame you for it, I do not judge you for it.

Just don’t shame me for mine. I’m happy with my writing process.

Image result for rachel berry gif don't rain on my parade

Kate out.


Drake and Max, Dan and Phil, and Katie alone with her thoughts.

Hi, reader-peeps.

Nearly seven years ago, I had an idea spark in my mind. I think I was cleaning the kitchen when it happened. I had an idea for a story about a boy who turned into a dragon.

If you’ve known me for a long time, you possibly know about this dragon boy. I’m not sure how much I’ve talked about him on the blog, but basically, this kid is named Drake Elliot (the first name was a purposeful dragon reference, the surname was an accident) and originally he was cursed to turn into a dragon every night.

I have been struggling to write Drake for seven years. Though I suppose it’s more like six because the very first draft was easy to write. I had a friend who talked some sense into me instead of letting me attempt to get that draft published, thank God, but pretty much ever since I’ve been trying to write this story at least subconsciously.

One thing that has stayed the same in most of the variations is Drake’s best friend, Max. Max has gone through several variations himself, but one thing that has always been true is that he is loyal to Drake. That and his bird-watching obsession.

Drake has stayed mainly the same. His name got a bit of a change, he has gained family members that he didn’t have in the original, but for the most part, he’s always been a red head with green eyes and dragonic powers.

But one thing that hasn’t been the same about Drake is his character arc. The original story had no such thing and it’s one of the elements that have caused Drake to be a bit of a thorn in my writerly side. I have had so much trouble figuring out who this kid is, what makes him tick, and what ticks him off.

I had a bit of a revelation. I realized that the person I’ve been trying to nail with Drake is basically Dan Howell. Sarcastic. Dark. Sardonic. And yet, incredibly sweet and flawed underneath all that. Max was quite easy to identify as Phil Lester, as both are absolute cinnamon rolls too good, too pure for this world.

The funny thing is that I didn’t even know who Dan and Phil really were until a few weeks ago. Dan and Phil’s videos and their friendship make me so incredibly happy that it actually makes me sad if I think about it too hard and long. That there are two people who love each other that much (and it’s a platonic love) on this earth is nothing short of amazing.

But I didn’t write this post to fangirl over Dan and Phil.

I’ve realized something furthermore about Drake. Maybe his story has evolved as I’ve needed it to, subconsciously. They say write what you want to read. What if I’ve been writing Drake according to what I needed to hear or needed to say or felt I needed in my real life but couldn’t get? To an extent, is Drake’s story a tool of catharthis or a chance for me to live a completely magical but different life vicariously? (This is starting to turn into “why do you write” and I’m just going to stop here.)

Drake’s original story was a fun adventure. Every incarnation (or partial incarnation, I should say, since none but the orginals have ever been completed) since has had many variations with different focuses and styles and attempts at plot. And now, as I consider that I want Drake and Max to have such a strong friendship that it’s hard for people to not see it as romantic, I wonder if it’s because I’ve been lonely. As I consider that I might age them up to college age (late teens), is it because I’ve aged too? Because I’ve changed, have they changed?

I wonder that, if I’m still struggling to write Drake’s story in a few years, will he be possibly aged up again to his twenties. Everytime I consider making him older, things happen to the story. The audience changes. How the plot happens changes. Some of the things Drake does changes. Things I consider canon (I’m the author; everything is canon) come into question again. Even subject matter comes into question, whether that’s if I’ll let a teenage Drake swear or if I’ll make him go through something like depression.

It’s a complicated mess to try and sort out what I want to happen and what has happened and what I consider unchangable. Which actually sums up my current life pretty well and further supports the idea that Drake and Max change to fit what I need.

I only wish I had a Max to help me figure it out. You’re pretty lucky, Drake.

Kate out.




A Dream

Hi, reader-peeps.

People ask “where do you see yourself in ten years”?

I personally hate this question because it usually comes from potential employers. So you probably don’t want to say “Well, I hope I’m not still working for you in ten years and I’m really just here because I need the money.”

Ten years is a LONG time. I mean, seriously. Ten years ago, I thought that by 27 I’d be happily married and have a bunch of small kids of my own.

And here I am at nearly 27 with a much different dream and absolutely no prospects for marriage. I’ve never even been on a date.

So where do I see myself in ten years? Or at the very least, where do I want to be in ten years?

I want to be in Los Angeles, living in a small-ish, but nice house (if it’s just me, I don’t need anything huge). I want the sunshine of LA. I adore the sun. I want the coast. I’ve heard that the Pacific ocean is cold, but when it’s 100 degrees out, does it really matter?

I want to spend my days writing novels, for which I am a NYT bestseller. I want to be a vlogger. And a YouTube gamer.  I want one of those amazing but expensive laptops to do my work on the go but also a nice desktop for when I’m at home. I want professional video-editing equipment or maybe even someone who edits my videos for me.

I want to casually run into famous people. I want to be among them, hanging out and having people recognize me when I go to the grocery store. I also want to not have to cook all the time for myself.

I want a group of friends in LA to hang out with, but I also want to still have the majority of the friends I have now. I want to be able to travel (for book tours and stuff) and I want to be able to call some of the current friends and say “Hey, I’m going to be in your city! Want to hang out?”

I want to be part of a church that speaks truth and feels like a family, much like the one I have now.

I want to travel to Indiana for Christmas. For like the entire month of December.

Speaking of traveling, I want a car. Nothing fancy. I adore Volkwagen Beetles and one that’s blue or silver or bright pink would be lovely.

This is my ten years from now. It’s a bit farfetched and maybe I’ll change my mind about some of this. But this is my dream.

Kate out.

Ch21Con Blog Tour: Interview with Ariel Kalati

Hi, reader peeps!

Today, we have a guest on the blog: Ariel Kalati, one of the team members of Ch21Con! Welcome to Spiral-Bound, Ariel!

So for this post, I will be interviewing Ariel, asking some questions about the conference, about writing, and a couple not so serious questions. So let’s jump right in! (I will be in bold and Ariel’s text will be standard.)

Tell us a little about yourself.

Well, I’m a current senior at Sarah Lawrence College (though I’ll have graduated by the time of this year’s conference- aah!) and I’m studying writing, literature, and social sciences. I want to be involved in education and community building, so Chapter One Events has always been kind of the best job. I’ve been writing since I was, like, six years old, and the written word is still my favorite thing.

That is awesome! Congratulations on your upcoming graduation!

Tell us about Ch1Events and how you got started with it.

I was one of the mythical original founders of Chapter One Events. Basically, when I was ten, I used to spend my time on a writing forum for kids, where I made some great friends. And then, one of those friends, Julia, had the idea for us to meet up and host a mini writing conference amongst ourselves. The first Ch1Con is still one of my best memories, because it made me realize how great it is to spend time with other like-minded young writers. Since then, the conference has been expanding, and now we’ve taken that goal of spending time with and educating other young writers, and turned it into a whole array of online events, a second conference (Ch21Con), and tons of cool things like contests and our mentorship program.

I’m really excited about the first Ch21Con. What are you most excited about for Ch21Con this year?

Oh wow, I don’t even know! I think I’m really excited about the speakers this year, although we always have cool speakers. Christine Herman’s Twitter account is super cool and her upcoming book sounds awesome, so I can’t wait to hear what she’s going to talk about. Karuna Riazi, who wrote THE GAUNTLET, which I love, spoke at Ch1Con 2015, and now she’s coming back, which I’m thrilled about! And our very own Allison Mulder has the best puns and gives the best publishing advice, so I’m ready for that, too. But honestly, the main event of any Chapter One Event is pizza, I think, so I guess my answer is the pizza.

Pizza is definitely one of the best parts of a Chapter One Event.

The Chapter One Events give teens and young adults a chance to learn from young authors. What is something that you learned from a Ch1Con speaker?

Honestly, I would probably have to make a giant list and analyze it in, like, a spreadsheet or something, to be able to pick the most important things I’ve learned from Ch1Con speakers, because they all are so inspiring. For me personally, hearing Susan Dennard talk about how she went from being a scientist to being a writer was really inspirational, and it taught me that having several interests doesn’t mean that your interest in writing is invalid. I also loved Kody Keplinger’s keynote address last year, where she told us that failure is okay, and that trying at something counts.

Both very good things to learn! Susan Dennard has been one of my favorite speakers.

Let’s step away from Ch1Con questions for a minute. So, what are you reading lately?

Well, lately it’s been chapters from my Human Rights Advocacy textbook, because I’ve got lots of schoolwork. I am very slowly listening to “Good Omens” as an audiobook though. Once I graduate, I’m going to try and put more reading into my schedule. Ideally. If the “real world” doesn’t kill me.

What do you like to do when you aren’t reading or writing or are busy with schoolwork?

Well, I’m a big fan of eating food. I also like watching TV shows, like Parks and Recreation or Steven Universe. I love art history, so going to art museums is fun. Pretty much just introvert nerd stuff like that.

Being an introvert nerd is fun.

What are your favorite and least favorite tropes?

Ooh, good question! My favorite tropes are definitely things like, fun upbeat messy person makes friends with/falls in love with/has to team up with cranky organized overachiever person. And I also love witches and woodland sprites and stuff. My least favorite tropes are pretty much mostly misogynistic tropes, like “girl is super shy and boy is mean to her but in a romantic way somehow” and stuff like that.

I love magic folklore-sy tropes like woodland sprites.

What is your favorite use of tomatoes? (I said there would be less than serious questions.)

Ah, tomatoes… Tomatoes are excellent when simply pureed, spread over a flour dough, then add some olive oil and mozzarella and cook it in an oven. Basically I’m saying pizza. Pizza is the priority.

Pizza is absolutely a priority. I agree 100%.

Finally, because no Ch1Con interview would be complete without this question, what item from the Panera Bread menu are you? (Disclaimer: I have never eaten Panera Bread, but I’ve been assured that will be remedied at the conference this year.)

Oh, the most important question. I want to say that I’m the Kitchen Sink cookie, because I have a lot of different elements to my personality, but they add up to something sweet that is a little too much at times.

That is a very poetic description. Thank you so much for letting me interview you!


I hope guys enjoyed the interview. You can find Ariel on her Twitter here. And if you’re interested in either Ch1Con or Ch21Con, you can find out more here. The conference is August 4, so get signed up quick! We have awesome stuff planned for all.

Kate out.

Storms and Trust

Hi, reader-peeps.

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been trying to get a post out that has been my current circumstances– what happened with Camp NaNo and the Minecraft streaming and what’s going on in my life. Life has been a bit stormy.

You will get a post about the Minecraft stuff, at least, and possibly an explanation of my lack of NaNo-ing.

As for the life stuff… as heartfelt as the two drafts I had were and as much as I needed to write them for a little catharsis, I don’t think I’m going to share them. They boil down to me trying and struggling to figure life out.

But in the last week, God has, by His Grace, guided me out of that. Do I have life completely figured out? No. Do I have some semblance of a plan that I hope is God’s plan too? Yeah. Yeah, I do.

So instead of a post that is no longer relevant and is probably over-dramatic, I want to link you guys to another blog post. It was written by a man who was my pastor when I was a kid. He has long since stepped down from pastor-ing, but he writes thoughtful and wonderful Bible commentary blog posts. His post today really reminded me of trusting God and His timing and grace.

The post is here.

So, go check it out and I’ll talk to you guys later.

Solo Christo,


Crafting Plans

Hi, reader-peeps!

I’m going to start making Minecraft videos!

This is an old Pocket Edition screenshot. I’ll be playing PC Edition for the videos.

I’m not sure when exactly this will start, but I’ve got the software downloaded and figured out and I have a new YouTube channel made. I’m really just trying to get a few more details figured out.

I’ve been running a few polls on Twitter about various specifics (my Twitter is here so you can vote too!) Here’s what I’m thinking at the moment:

I’m going to start with recording and uploading to Twitch and YouTube. We can move to streaming later, once we have basics down and my schedule better allows for live content.

I’m planning to record early in the morning, which is another strike against streaming.

The videos will be about 20 or 30 minutes long. 20 to 30 minutes is a more manageable chunk for me and I think shorter videos go over better than long ones.

Right now, I am not planning to edit the videos. Just record and upload. I may change my mind before the recording starts, though. (If anyone has any tips about how to edit, please share!)

I’m not sure how many times a week I will record. I’m planning on one minimum, so you will get at least one video a week.

Moving on from the technical stuff…

The game will be Vanilla Minecraft. No mods, no texture packs. I will eventually do mods, but we’re starting with Vanilla. It will be Survival (not Hardcore) and will either be in Easy or Normal mode.

I’m debating on whether I will create the world before the stream or during the stream. On the one hand, creating during stream is adventurous. On the other, creating before gives me the chance to make sure we have not started on a deserted island or any other horrible spawn points. I will probably not make this decision a poll.

Another thing I’m debating is whether or not I leave cheats on. I won’t just give myself diamonds and teleport everywhere, but I don’t think anyone wants to watch me unsuccessfully hunt for a desert for three streams if I need cacti. I may do a poll on this one.

The current poll is how long we’re playing Minecraft, whether that’s to the end credits or doing everything possible or just until we get bored of Vanilla Survival. The first two appeal to me, because that puts some pressure on me to actually get to the end credits (which I have never done in straight up, no cheat survival) (yes, that’s right, I’ve never legitimately battled the Ender Dragon).

I would love to hear your thoughts and any tips or questions you have. Is there anything I haven’t really considered? Lemme know in the comments or on Twitter! And please vote in the polls! They help a lot.

Kate out.