I Used To Write…..


Some of you may remember my review of Jeff Goins You Are A Writer e book last month. No? Ok, find it here

Jeff held a competition but I didn’t have the guts to enter lol. A couple of days ago, the winner was announced. Dustin M Smith who blogs at Propensity For Curiosity won with this brilliant video :)

Now, doesn’t that give you a warm and fuzzy feeling? :)

As for me, am I still trying to believe I am a writer? Well, I managed to put it on my Facebook profile, that’s a start isn’t it? Lol ;)

Dustin talks about the fact that what he used to write was safe. Ahhhh, yeah, I think I’m very much the same. There is a lady in my writing class who is writing a novel that is a mixture of 2 different POV’s. When I asked her why, she said she was experimenting. Hmmmmm, I never experiment. So perhaps I should? do you experiment with your writing? And if you do, what kind of things have you tried? *goes off to attempt some deep and meaningful poetry*

Tonight, I’m going to a Nanowrimo event to meet Chris Baty…..yep, IN THE FLESH!

I’m Feeling All Appreciated :)


Oh my :) I am feeling pretty chuffed. The lovely CB Wentworth has nominated me for the Reader Appreciation award, and said some lovely comments about my blog. Thank you so much honey :)

I love this community so goddam much!

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In order to accept this award I need to do the following:

List something you’ve been up to lately
Nominate 6 other blogs

Ok, that’s pretty simple lol….something I’ve been up to lately? Hmmmm….*thinks* ok, harder than I thought, you guys know everything anyway! Lol

Ahhhhh, I have it! :)

Dieting *groan* and very unsuccessfully I might add lol. I mean, how can you write and diet? The connection between tapping away at the Netbook and chocolate seems soooo right, don’t you think? All those coffee shops, lattes, cake, muffins…..mmmmmm :)

The idea of doing my editing whilst munching on carrot sticks is just not doing it for me!

So there, now you have it, I’ve said it, I’m supposedly on a bloody diet, but, it’s not going well lol. I am a member of a gym but I’m just far too busy to go (so I tell myself) ;)

So now for the nominees. This is getting so hard, making sure I don’t nominate someone who has already had the award lol. I’ve had a few new followers recently, so I’m going to nominate my new readers, show my appreciation :)

Paula Acton

Robin Coyle

Rough Wighting

RumpyDog

Silverfox @ SpecialSpice

Just Coop It

Do check out these wonderful bloggers who have just started reading my posts. Thanks guys, you’re brilliant, all of you :)

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This post got me thinking….. What’s your favourite writing snack? The thing you love to nibble on whilst you’re tapping away on those keys? And the first person to say carrot sticks will also get a filthy look ;) lol. The picture above is of one on my favourites….little cheesy biscuits *dribbles* lol

The Lonely Hunter


Today’s guest is a prolific short story writer who is currently working on her first novel. Please welcome Gail Aldwin who blogs at The Writer Is A Lonely Hunter

How did you know you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve dabbled with writing several times and I studied for an MA at Sussex University which involved writing a travel book about the pilgrim route across northern Spain to Santiago de Compostela. Every time I seemed to be getting somewhere with my writing, life intervened in the form of pregnancies, additional work responsibilities, or moving house. I started writing again three years ago, when the promotion I’d set my heart on didn’t come through and my colleague was appointed. To save myself weeks of reliving the interview and to contain my envy, I began to write a book about back-packing in Australia. I joined a writing group which kept me focussed and I’ve now drafted on my third manuscript. Like many people, I always thought there was a book in me and because I don’t consider myself to be articulate, writing gives a form of expression that enables me to be spontaneous and fluent. I write because I find it hard to talk about the themes I want to share, issues around racism, alcoholism, domestic violence and homelessness. It all sounds very bleak but my characters are resilient.

What genre do you write in?
My novels fall under the category of contemporary women’s fiction. I’d like to move into literary fiction but my writing style will need some improvement to make the transition. I also write flash fiction, complete stories in anything from 75 words up to 1000. I love flash fiction, it’s like an antidote to the slog of completing a novel and I’ve had a few successes in getting work published. You’ll find my stories on line at websites such as Paragraph Planet, Five Stop Story, and Cafe Lit. I also write a regular column for What the Dickens? Magazine that answers writers’ questions.

Do you have a writing schedule, your normal writing day?
I write every day, getting up early in the morning to commit a couple of hours. On days when I’m not working, I also spend a good part of the day at my computer. I watch very little television and that frees up time in the evening for writing.

What’s the best writing environment for you – where you write?
I like writing in a quiet space. I’m not sure what the best writing environment is – I haven’t experimented with this. We have a family study that I share with everyone except my daughter who likes working in her bedroom. My husband and son play games on the desktop and I write on a notebook. Sometimes we sit alongside each other but that’s only possible when the headphones are in use. When I can’t stand the distraction, I work at the kitchen table.

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Who inspires you?
A couple of years ago I read a book called The Museum of Innocence by Orhan Pamuk. It’s set in Istanbul during the 1970s and is a story about obsessive love. I travelled through Turkey during 1981 on a double decker bus heading for to Kathmandu and I was therefore immediately drawn to the story. Pamuk is an intriguing story teller, who features as a minor character within the narrative and using all sorts of devices to hook the reader. I’m amazed at the prose, with one chapter titled ‘Sometimes’ where every sentence begins with this word.

If you were to be compared to another author, who’s work would yours most resemble?
I’d like to write prose as good as Orhan Pamuk, but it’ll take a lot of dedication to get to there. In the meantime, I read the work of debut novelists to check on the competition. One author I’d particularly like to be compared with is Evie Wyld. Her first novel After The Fire A Still Small Voice is set in Australia and she does a wonderful job of intertwining the location with the characters and their motivations. Australia is like a second home, so I’d like to be as good as Evie Wyld in describing the country and the characters in my novel Manipulation

Tell us about your current WIP
I’m currently redrafting my first novel Manipulation ready to submit to a reader for comment as part of the New Writers’ Scheme with the Romantic Novelists’ Association. It’s a story
that explores the challenges of travelling through Outback Australia during the recession of the 1980s for a well-mannered 20-year-old-girl. Committed to making a success of the experience, Helen follows a difficult path and ultimately becomes involved with a manipulative older man. Misunderstanding and confusion force the couple to ricochet around the country until they finally settle in Sydney and address some of the issues in their relationship.

This year I’ve also had short stories included in three print anthologies. Here’s a photo of them.

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I think it’s great the way Gail works with and around the family :) in the evenings I do share my writing space with my husband, but I find it hinders me lol. Have you ever SHARED your writing space with someone else? Did it work?

If you’d like to read my post for the day, pop on over to Gails blog :)

This Weeks Goals 28th to 3rd


Yesterday’s postcard from the Tate prompted a story for me about a guy who had been thrown out of his apartment, on to the street. All he has left in the world is the sofa and some black bags. The question is….why has he been thrown out? I’m kind of thinking along the lines that he’s divorced, and lives with his son. His son has got involved with some very dodgy characters, which has resulted in the fact that he’s taken all his dads money to pay the debts off….and now he’s disappeared……

I’m guest posting today, over at Creative Writing Studies for the lovely Anthony Haynes. Go and have a peek to read me talking about why I blog, and what I LOVE about it! :)

I’ve had a pretty productive week :)

Last weeks goals were:

1. Turn the prologue back into 3rd person (again lol).
DONE!

2. Try to nail chapter one, so that I have something to read out at class on Wednesday night.
DONE!

3. Finish sorting out the formatting/layout of the whole thing.
HALF WAY THROUGH!

4. Have another read through and work on the ending. I think I’ve worked out where I want it to go, I’ve just got to write it now, which means changing stuff in other places. So yep, I’ve been avoiding that lol.
NOT EVEN ATTEMPTED!

Oh dear, well ok, it wasn’t that productive. I don’t know why I’m avoiding it so much. No, yes, sorry, I do….because its hard work, because I’m confused and don’t know exactly what I want to happen, because I know it will mean changing other stuff that I’ve already written :(

So this weeks goals are:

1. Finish sorting out the formatting/layout of the whole thing, and I mean REALLY finish lol.

2. Have another tinker with the Blurb.

3. Try to do something constructive towards the ending, even if it’s only 500 bloody words! Lol.

4. Get Chapter 2 sorted, polished up and in ship shape ;)

I’ve come to the conclusion that overwhelming myself with a to do list doesn’t achieve anything, so I’m trying to be a little easier on myself (ha ha ha).

so what are your writing plans for the week?

My current read, recommended by Jeff Goins

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Picture Postcard & Where I’m Guesting


I’m currently guesting over at Virginias blog Poeta Officium so do pop in and read my “One Most Important Piece Of Advice To Writers”

Now, where was I? Lol

I bought this postcard when I went up to the Tate Modern recently, because it intrigued me :)

It’s acrylic on canvas by a German artist, Martin Kippenberger and is called “Ohne Titel”. I thought initially it was a photograph!

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I wonder what inspired him to paint it?

Would love to hear what story line you can come up with for this one?

I’ll share my ideas tomorrow :)

You Lucky Lucky People!


I’m having so much fun, interviewing people I connect with through my Blog :)

Today we have the lovely CC, who’s blog ccarothers is a mixture of fiction, poetry and observations. A place where she can be creative in whichever form she chooses :)

I interviewed CC and she kindly answered my questions and provided a couple of photographs :)

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How did you know you wanted to be a writer?
Good question. I guess it’s when my need to express myself in story form became hard to ignore. I was messing around writing short stories and found I loved being creative in that way. My life makes better sense to me if I fictionalize the parts I don’t understand. If that makes any sense at all.

What genre do you write in?
Romance. I like to dabble in erotic romance as well. Both genres get a bad rap, but are awesome because you get your happy ending (usually). We need that.

Do you have a writing schedule, whats your normal writing day?
No schedule. If I’m sitting in my office and an idea strikes me, I write. In the morning when I first wake up seems to be when my brain is the most open. I tend to have a lot of ideas. But overall, I write whenever I get the itch to do so.

What’s the best writing environment for you – where you write?
My bedroom! Ha! My bed is comfortable and it’s my favorite place to be in my house.

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Who inspires you?
To write or in general? My mother inspires me to be someone with fortitude.

If you were to be compared to another author, who’s work would yours most resemble?
Um… I can’t think of any author in particular. I’m sure I’m in no way unique in the way I write, but can’t pinpoint an author.

Tell us about your current WIP book?
It’s about a pirate! Haha. It’s probably more of an erotic historical romance. A young, unmarried woman is sent to America because she’s headstrong and smart mouthed. She’s shipwrecked along the way and captured by a pirate. It’s an interesting captivity for her.
Trying to get it all on paper. My muse is fickle. It’s funny, but this story started as a 100 word prompt and morphed into something bigger. I like when that happens.

A huge thank you to CC for being my guest. Please pop over to her wonderful blog and say “Hi”

I have to admit that I haven’t really explored the whole idea of writing in bed….I will definitely be trying it :) Have you ever tried writing in bed?

Why Do We Do It?


There’s been an image floating around Facebook, have you seen it? This one……

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With a bit of investigation, I’ve discovered it’s come from The Weldon Owen Publishing blog and it seems to have inspired lots of debates.

One of my favourite bloggers, Roger Colby featured it on his blog a few days ago, and it made me ask my self the question….. If this writing and publishing malarkey is so goddam hard….why do we do it? Why do we put ourselves through it?

Have you ever asked yourself that question? Or is it just me?

I’ve been doing some Googling lol….from what I can tell (the figures vary) its less than 1% of all manuscripts that get submitted that actually find their way on to our shelves in book form. It’s a tiny amount when you consider the hundreds of thousands of MS’s that must land on agents and publishers desks every day.

So, here’s exactly why I put myself through it.

1. I LOVE writing and I love words

2. It’s escapism, a chance to get away from my own life and envelop myself in someone else’s lol.

3. To get down on paper the thoughts going round in my head.

4. It’s a chance to explore, learn and grow.

5. Because there’s still that tiny piece of me that hopes i might, just might, be in that 1% *snigger*

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So I’m determined to stay positive, determined to continue on my writing journey, and if I never get published, so be it….I’m doing something I really enjoy :)

So why do you do it?