O Is For…


Good morning readers and fellow A-Zers :) Today i have a dentists appointment *groans* so I’m trying to force myself into a positive place lol

Its “O” day in the A-Z Challenge and now we’re past the middle i can see the end in sight. Remind me next year to do something i can schedule lol ;)

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L Is For…


Good morning A-Zers :)

I enjoyed my day off yesterday, up to a point. Had a lovely meet with some Wrimo’s for a writing session (where i spent the whole time trying to find the right title for my newest novel – more about that after the A-Z Challenge) and then ended up in A & E (ER) with a contact lens stuck in my eye! LMAO ;) I have to laugh or i’ll cry! This morning i look like someone has punched me in the eye and I’m squinting at everything. Supposed to be going to my writing group tonight, but we’ll have to see…double vision and driving don’t go well together :(

So now I’ve had my little whinge, lets get on with todays entry. Its L day today…

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J Is For…


Good morning! Im feeling much better :)

So todays J day in the A-Z Challenge and from the moment i saw the word i’d been given a Beatles song popped into my head, and i knew exactly what i wanted to write about.

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Greetings…


…is exactly what my dad always says :)

So Hi…how are you?…what have you all been up to? Me? Cooking, baking, tidying, walking Alb, laundry, faffing, reading, playing The Sims (LOVE that game!) and NOT writing *sighs*

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Insecure Writers Support Day -December 13


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Today is IWSG Day, the last of 2013 and the only month I missed was November :(

So what am I insecure about this month?…

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The Book of Me, Written by You


If you’re into journaling, writing memoir or genealogy then perhaps this might interest you…

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Good luck to Julie at Anglers Rest with this project. I’ll be taking part when I can :)

If you want to join, you’ll need to be quick…it starts today!

Insecure Writers Support Day – March


It’s the first Wednesday of the month, and you know what that means don’t you ;)

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Many thanks, again, to the wonderful Alex J Cavanagh who created and hosts the blog hop :)

Ok, so last month I was in a real state, suffering from Writers Block, big time! And, although I was able to establish why I was struggling (because it just wasn’t working), I couldn’t see a way out of it. Thank you so much for all your kind words of advice and support. It really helped me make the decision to start rewriting the WIP again (scrubbing the 25,000 words of rewrite number 2 and starting rewrite number 3) and it was the rewritten first 5000 words that I submitted for critique to my fellow students at Faber last Monday night.

At this point I’d just like to add that my class are 11 fellow students (plus my tutor) who are all, in my opinion, very talented writers. They come from different backgrounds (and countries in 3 cases), are different ages, different sexes, and write different genres. I value their opinions so much and respect their judgements. It’s probably one of the best parts of the course (although it doesn’t feel like it when you’re being critiqued lol), a pure emotional roller coaster, and possibly one of the bravest things I’ve ever done!

Anyway, back to my critique and how I’m feeling today… I had some very positive responses to my piece, but also lots of comments on the structure. When I started rewrite number 2 I decided that, as it was really Ruby and Laura’s story, I had to find a way to have Laura’s story from the past, running along side Ruby’s story from the present. I thought about doing part one then part two…..nah, boring. Then i thought about just having different chapters in a different time frame…..nah, that can be annoying lol. So i decided to go for the idea of having Laura’s journal. Cliched? Probably, but, I like reading novels that include letters and diary entries.

But there are a few problems in doing that.
1. Making sure that the two voices of Ruby and Laura are different (the journal is a younger Laura and then an older Laura appears later on, which complicates things even further).
2. Making the journal entries believable and not just sound like the narration of another story.
3. Deciding on how reliable Laura’s version of events really is.

So, yep, you guessed it….I failed on numbers 1 and 2 and hadn’t even considered number 3! Lol…back to the drawing board.

So now I have a page full of notes and ideas from class and 7,000 words that need sorting out (again) lol. But I’m ok about that. Everything they said made sense, and I can see a way forward now. I’ve just got to decide exactly how to structure it, and iron out the problems with voice (which I think is going to be the hardest! Haven’t I always said that I think all my characters sound like me lol). Lots to think about, decisions to be made, a new Synopsis to be written and then…..back to page one! (Which also needs to start somewhere else) Lol

Not good when I have so many deadlines looming :(

So I guess today I’m feeling stressed…Stressed, but optimistic, panicked but positive. I beleive in this story. I believe in these characters. Perhaps I’m just not a good enough writer to give it the justice it deserves? My insecurities are what they’ve always been, am I good enough? Can I really do this?

And the hardest part is trying to kick those self doubts in to touch (you’ve all been there I know) and actually start writing again. Knuckle down and actually get on with it!

One day I’ll look back at all this and laugh….hopefully :)

Are you feeling insecure about your writing today? Please share so that I know I’m not alone lol ;)

IWSG – February – Confronting Writers Block


It’s Insecure Writers Support Group Day….and this month I really need a day to wallow ;)

Huge thanks as ever to Alex J Cavanaugh for starting the group.

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I’m not a bragger…never have been, never will be…But, I have often said on my blog, and on others, that I don’t suffer from writers block (don’t you just hate writers who say that?) and I’m still of the opinion that it’s true, I don’t. I can always find something to write about. I’m never completely without words. But, I’ve recently discovered that there are several types of writers block (thank you Fred White) which has made me realise that actually, perhaps I do!

1. Procedural Blocks: Where you get to a point in your story and think what do I do now? And can’t figure out where to take the plot next.

2. Creativity Blocks: Lack of ideas (Mr White says this is the hardest to overcome, but I disagree – see above lol).

3. Psychological Blocks: Your inner critic is telling you you’re not good enough, your writing is crap and that you’ll never be published.

4. Distraction Blocks: Chores, friends, commitments, resulting in not being able to focus.

5. Procrastination Blocks: You find every excuse under the sun to put off the writing (probably because of number 3!).

So at the moment I seem to be suffering from number 3 :( Mr Squiggle is definitely winning (you’ll need to read a previous post to know what I’m on about with Mr Squiggle lol).

The last week of January I was editing like a lunatic (the first 5000 words which will be my next submission for class) and I’ve subsequently discovered that I can’t write and edit at the same time, thats fair enough, lesson learnt. But…then I stopped editing, and I’ve hardly touched the WIP since. It’s like I’ve come up against a brick wall :(

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I have over 25,000 words written now of The Last Word Cafe and I’m stuck! Good and proppa! It’s not that I don’t know where the story’s going, I do. It’s not because I’ve got to a hard bit, I haven’t. So what’s the problem? I have a synopsis, I know exactly where the story needs to go. So why can’t I write the damn thing? Is it because its a rewrite of the Nano 2010 novel that I started working on, then stuck in a drawer, then got out again, so I’m bored with it? Or does there just come a point when working on the same “story” for however many years just makes you worn out? And yes, I’m worn out. I have deadlines looming and need to have it completed by June (edited!).

At the weekend i printed off the whole lot and I’m reading through it. Trying to do a bit of planning, in the hopes that it inspires me. In the meantime, come on guys, I need a kick up the arse….how do I get back into it? It seems that I’ve had such a love/hate relationship with this novel over the last 2.2 years…I need to get it finished and put to bed for my own sanity lol

A Prompt A Day…..


A couple of months back I had the chance to see Ros Barber talk about her new book, The Marlowe Papers and hear her read some of her poetry. Wow! :o)

Ros runs a website with fellow writer Kate Marillat called Be The Writer You Dream Of Being and together they run writing courses and do talks. I can highly recommend it :)

So when Kate requested that readers submit articles, I jumped at the chance (you know me, I do like to waffle on about writing stuff lol).

Head on over to Ros & Kate’s website to read my article, A Prompt A Day Keeps Writers Block Away where I talk about my experience of using writing prompts.

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Please leave a comment. Oh, and let me know what you thought of the article? :)

The Secret to Generating New Ideas is Streetcombing


An e mail recently from Daring to Live Fully had me jumping up and down! Ok, not literally but you get the gist ;)

The post talks about “Streetcombing” a system created/developed by Richard Stomp which is based on beach combing. Remember beach combing? You must have done that when you were a kid, hell, I still do it now! ;)

Anyway, it’s aimed at the business world, but in my opinion, it works very well for us writers. But I’m afraid you will need to actually go out. That’s right, leave your desk! Yeah, I see ya, looking out of the window and shivering (well, thats you and me both here in the UK!). I wish I’d stumbled across this in the summer, sorry about that, but, if I’m game, I hope you are :)

So once you’ve put your jumper on, got your brolley, get your camera and we’ll begin :)

1. Go for a walk. Find an interesting street, preferably one with shops on.

2. Watch for anything that catches your eye. Have the mind of a child, be curious in everything.

3. Take photos of things you find interesting. Take lots of photos. Don’t ask yourself why you’re attracted to taking the photo of that old milk crate, not yet.

4. Go home, have a nice warm drink and upload your photos to your PC.

5. Look through the photos and ask yourself the following questions of each one:
What is the concept behind this photo?
Why did I take it?
What makes it interesting?

6. Take the concept you found and use it to start generating ideas, orrrrr for us writers, use the photo itself to generate a story/character idea.

If you’re not too sure what Mr Stomp means about concept, watch this video. It’s only 7 minutes long. I found the sound to be very quiet so you might have to max your volume.

Mr Stomp suggests you do this once a week, but I’m thinking once a month would be better for me :)

Right at the end Mr Stomp says that the idea could be adapted into “Museumcombing” or “Supermarketcombing” etc. I’m just loving those ideas, the possibilities are endless!

So I will be Streetcombing at some stage when this rain stops (and after Nano lol) How about you? Fancy it?