10th of April 2021 (2)

Hey folks! Although I didn’t wrap up this draft of Black Blood I did add another 1500 or so words to the 500+ that I wrote this morning for a total of 2110 words for the day. Hopefully come tomorrow I’ll be able to wrap this sod up! I am so ready to be done with this draft.

Once it’s done I can move onto the next stage of Penal Earth, which will be a digital read through. I’m tempted to change things a little with my process and do two read throughs. Do the first one where I’ll make the changes as I go, and then a few weeks later go through it again to see what else I pick up. I’ll still do a red pen edit because I find an out loud read always finds bits and pieces that other edit passes don’t.

I had to get into proper game mode today!

With Penal Earth, I’m going to submit it to publishers. I’ve got my dream ones I’ll send it to first and see how well I do. I’m not expecting to get it accepted, and I can always self pub it if it doesn’t, but it’s not going to hurt to send it out to editors and smaller presses that I respect. That’s why I’m determined to do a good job with it. The zombie will be my first step into putting my work out there, and it has to be good. But Penal Earth is a full length novel that is part one of a trilogy. Now, part of me thinks I should just get something written which is a one and done, but with a few threads that I could pick up if it does well, but Penal Earth I’ve got a lot of confidence in, and if it doesn’t do well I can always self pub the rest of the trilogy when the rights revert to me or I manage to work it so I can publish them sooner. That’s a bridge I’ll cross when the time comes though.

Right, seeing is I’ve exhausted my creative wells today I’m going to watched sitcoms and tidy up before dinner.

Have a super day, folks!

I finished First and Only the other day, so now onto book two of the Gaunts Ghosts series, Ghostmaker.

Good Morning, 25th February 2021

Good morning, folks!

How are we all doing this morning?

I have edited 4196 words this morning and just printed off the draft of that short story ready for my pen and paper edit where I will be reading it out loud. This is the story for an anthology that I love the sound of and I really hope the publisher likes it.

Love it! This draft ended dead on 4000 words 😁

I’m not going to get much else done today. Once I’ve written this post I’m going to go out and make a start on sorting the garden out with my folks, and then after that I’m going to put me feet up for a few hours. I have an early start tomorrow, so I’d like to get a good nights sleep before hand.

Yesterday I got to work early as I needed to do a bit of shopping and thankfully the queues weren’t long so I had a nice twenty minutes to kill before work. So I made some notes on a short story that I wrote a long time ago that I’d like to expand into an novella. I’m getting some good thoughts on this one. I’ve not reread it yet, I want to make as many notes as I can before looking back through it. I’m liking this as I’m hoping it’ll give me an insight to the story I think I’ve written and I’ll see how my memory serves when I start reading it properly.

Right, time to get dressed and get started on the garden. I am out of shape and this will likely point out just how unfit I!

Have a great day, folks!

Good Evening, 17th February 2021

Hey folks, I’ve written 1231 words today on the vampire book and added some notes to Black Blood character files before I felt wiped out and decided on a nap.

After the nap I was going to do a little more but due to a car issue I took my parents to get their vaccine jabs. I made a few notes while I was waiting for them.

I did finish the episode of the vampire book I’ve been working on. The next one has me scratching my head a little, I’m not really sure how I’m going to tell the story I want to tell. I’m going to think it over a little and see what I can think out. I like this story, but it definitely needs rewriting and bringing onto track with how I want the story to be.

Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been struggling a little with my mental health. Nothing drastic, but enough to make me notice it. I’m taking steps, using what I’ve learnt from the help I’ve received to get back on track. Getting up early is part of that. The last two days I’ve been up around 8am and writing by 9am. Tomorrow I’m going to get up at about 7am and get cracking again before work. It worked well for me on Tuesday, and has worked well in the past. I get a good start to the day and I have a good day.

I feel like I’m on the right path again. Being productive helps, especially first thing of a morning. It means I’ve achieved something already that day.

A selfie a day keeps the black dog away…

Mental health is something that is still stigmatised. It’s still a dirty subject that people don’t want to hear about. I’m lucky, I’ve got loved ones who will listen when I need them. I’ve gotten great help, but I will fall at times. It’s how quickly I get back I that matters.

My favourite pen, a Parker Cartridge one, that I manage to misplace at least three times a week, but only ever for a few moments 🤣

I do have social media pages linked on the side of my blog, please consider following and liking me on any that you are on.

Good Evening, Folks! 15-2-21

I’ve not done a whole lot of writing these last few days. A couple of manic days at work takes its toll, but I am trying to make the most of my breaks and do a little writing work while on them. The last two days for example I’ve worked on notes for a mermaid story rewrite that I’m planning, and already got more depth for two characters in it.

Lunchtime notes 🙂

Aside from yesterday I’ve written everyday since the 10th. I’m pleased with that, even if the word counts weren’t high I still worked (partly editing as well on the story the words got added to).

I won’t get a lot done tonight as I pulled a few extra hours at work but due to shift changes I might have a bit more time tomorrow than I was expecting to get some work done.

I really need to touch base with the projects I’m working on at the moment. I’ve lost momentum (mainly my fault), which means I feel a little lost. I don’t think I’m miles away from where I was, it may just be a case of sitting down and looking over what I’ve got. So that’s something I’d like to get done before Wednesday (my next day off), so I’m able to get stuck in and have a productive day.

One of my favourite shorts of the last few years. I really hope they get funding to make a complete season 🙂

Something I’m going to try and do from here on out is watch more horror movies. I came to horror late, and there’s a lot I haven’t seen. So I’m going to start checking movies off and get into the depth of the genre I’m in. There’s countless books I want to read as well, but that’s a task which might be beyond me. I’m far too slow a reader to read it all.

Right, I’m going to get a little work done. I’m not planning on getting a lot done tonight. Just a bit to keep my momentum rolling. I am a little stuck with the story I’m working on, but there are other things I can work on if I don’t make progress with it tonight.

Lesbian Bed Death are one of my favourite bands to listen to in general as well as writing music.

Good Morning 10th of February 2021

Good morning folks! I managed to get up at about 8am like I planned. I’ve had breakfast, a cuppa tea and eased into my morning nicely. So now it’s time to get cracking.

I’m taking a relative from my household to an appointment mid-morning so I won’t be doing any writing after we return as there’s bits and pieces around home that need doing. Also, not for nothing, I want a little chill out today as well.

Something I need to do for the next couple of weeks is write down what projects I’m working on and a brief summary of what I need to do with each. That way when I sit down to work I can look at this list and I know where to start. Sometimes that’s the hardest part for me, getting going. But once I’m going I’m always good. Even if I’m not feeling it I can normally make a little progress on something. So I’m hoping this’ll help.

That all said, I’m off to get some work done. I think this month will prove to be a low word count month, both in new words and edited. A lot of what needs to be done is prep work for future drafts. So I need to accept that although it won’t feel like I’m making progress, I am.

Right, have a good day folks!

Another video from yesterday 🙂

Good Evening, 14th January 2021

Good evening, folks!

I’ve had a few quiet days writing wise, but I’ve managed to edit about 3000 words in the last couple of days.

I do find it harder to get a lot done when I’m on early’s but it’s something I’m getting better at. It’s definitely something I need to get better at as I do a lot of early starts, but I can do that by getting to bed earlier.

I’ve got a week off early February, so I’m going to start thinking about what I’m going to achieve in those seven days. I won’t be off out anywhere as we’ll most likely still in a lockdown. I’d like to be done with this read through of Black Blood and have an idea of what I’m doing with the ending by the end of that week.

I’ve got tomorrow off, but I have work to do on a non-writing matter that could take up a fair part of the day, but I’d still like to get about 3000 words worked through. I’d really like to get some fresh words written as well. I’m getting an itch to properly write as well. It’ll be great if I could put an hour aside and just knock out some words. Music on, and write! Simple as that.

Raven exploring the space under the stairs as I was putting the Christmas decks away last week.

I am really going to try and get myself organised better in the next month. I’ve got a dry/erase board and a diary. So I should be making better use of them. I need to write weekly, monthly, and yearly goals. Adjusting as I go depending on what comes my way.

I’ll wrap this post up by pimping out my Buy Me A Coffee page, where if people have liked my work they can contribute to the costs of writing. I’m working as an independent author at the moment, and any funds I receive go straight back into the writing pot. I’m going to be searching for paying markets for short stories and I have the funds in place already to self-publish my first release. I’m waiting on the editor to be free, I’ve got formatting arranged (although I’d like to learn how to do that myself in future), and the artwork looks amazing! I do understand times are tough, and I’ll never push hard and start bugging people about this.

I meant to post these weeks ago, the Christmas lights from my hometown of Gravesend.

Right, I’m off to watch a movie and then an early night. Although no work tomorrow I’d like to get an early start for the day. I’ve a lot I’d like to get done and getting an early start will set the day up nicely.

January 1st, 2021…Up and Running!

Good evening! 3964 words edited on Black Blood this afternoon. I think it’s going to be a slow process, but if I’d done the note taking as I was writing it in the first place then I wouldn’t have to do it now.

I am also going to try and step up in my preparation for writing a story. I mentioned the other day that I’ve sketched a little of the location in a story I’m working on. Well, today I’ve printed maps out of the area and will be making notes on them and sketching out details for the story. It takes place in the future in a real town, so that’s helped a lot.

The way I’m seeing this developing I think it’s going to pay off really well all the background work I’m doing. I’ve had a lot of these thoughts for stories 8n the past but have failed at including them because I forget about them as I’m writing. So all these notes I’m taking I’m going to add them to the scene notes tab in Scrivener and hope I don’t forget them!

Right! That’s me done for the night. I’m going to watch the end of this movie (Spirited Away), and then call it a night. I’ve got an early start tomorrow so a good nights sleep is important.

Good night, and rock on!

A cold Dizzy!

January 1st, 2021…. Here We Go!

Here it is, 2021!

I can’t describe how hard 2020 was for me, and not just because of Covid. If I took Covid out of it I still had the worst year of my life, but it was also the best year. And it’s the good that is driving me forward.

The changing of a calendar isn’t going to magically make life like it was pre-2020. It really doesn’t work like that. I know a lot of people don’t want to hear that, but it’s true. The reason why I got out of 2020 in the good place I am in now is because I’ve worked my arse off to get here. To make the best of the world around me and keep my head high, and my eyes focused on the next goal.

Do I fall down? Yes, I fell down over Christmas and it took its toll on me, but I get back up and moving forward again. I don’t dust myself off until I know I’m not at risk of being sucked back into that dark little corner of my soul again. I stop that from happening by talking to friends and family, being productive with writing, going to work. I defeat the negative elements of my mind by engaging with the people I love, the communities that have embraced me, and just being me. This last six months has taught me I don’t need to be scared to show who I am to the world. Because despite what I’ve thought for most of my life, I’m not worthless.

This year will see the release of my first novella. That’s the only release that I have scheduled for this year, at the moment. I’ve got to do better at finding markets to submit to. I’m not just going to focus on word counts and look at completing more projects, submitting more, and knocking items off my to-do list.

Last year I had stories published in three anthologies, which I think might be my best in a calendar year to date, don’t hold me to that though. So, I’m aiming for at least four pieces published this year.

Okay, on to today. I kinda overlaid, like till almost midday! So I’m a little behind where I wanted to be, but I needed the sleep and I feel pretty good for it. I’ve posted my first video of the year to my YouTube channel. It’s also the first one where I’m talking to the camera. A little nerve racking, and I know it’s not the best but it’s a new venture for me where I’m stepping out of my comfort zone, and like with everything else, the more I do the better I’ll get!

I will be getting into the Black Blood read through/edit shortly as well. I’ve edited about 2000 words a day over the last few days so I’m looking at doing about 3000 today.

I doubt I’ll be writing a lot of new words today. I’ve got a short story that I need to have written and off to the publisher by April but I need to think it out a bit, get some brainstorming done on it, before I can start writing. I’ve got a good idea of a major element of it, but I need more to it. At the moment it’s a few lines and an idea. Which isn’t enough.

Enough talking, time for action! Have a good day folks! No one is going to make this year good for you, people can help, but it’s You who will make this year, and your life, good or bad.

Good Morning, 28th of December 2020

I’ve kind of had a week off from writing. I was expecting to use it to get through the Christmas period but I didn’t need to in the end. Yes, it was still tough but thanks to all I’ve learnt, all the help and support I’ve had from the people I love in my life I was able to manage it better than I was expecting to.

Raven going for a majestic look 😊

I was also a little stuck with where I was taking Black Blood. I kept trying to add words but it was becoming very evident that I wasn’t prepared enough to finish this draft. So last night I began making notes. I didn’t start reading through the draft, I just copied some notes I’d scribbled down while writing the later stages of the story and did a few sketches. I’ve never really done the sketches, well not since Owen and I were working on From the Shadows a very long time ago. I found doing the couple I did last night really helpful, okay it brought a problem I hadn’t expected but I think I can find a way around that, or work it into the story.

I’m going to start the read through today, with the aim of having it done by the New Year. It’s a lick over 50k words and I think I can manage that. I’ve looked at my work rota and I definitely think it’s doable. Especially as I’m not going to be doing a full edit. This is a read through to figure out what I need to add and take away. What I need to do to get the ending how I want it, and to give it the depth and weight it deserves.

I think it’s also time to move this draft into Scrivener. It’s going to be helpful to be able to break it down into chapters and scenes and then I can insert or remove sections much easier. I can also have additional information that I’m compiling in there as well. I think that’s the way to go.

Right folks! I’ve got a little tidying before I can start working so I’m hopping off here. Have an awesome day!

18th December 2020 (Draft Done!)

Good afternoon folks. The draft for Penal Earth is done!!! I wrote 1924 words on it this morning and had it wrapped up in those words. Is it done done? No. Not by a long stretch. As I mentioned in a previous post I’ve now got to go through and start the editing process. I refuse to rewrite this one, again. It’s not happening! That way doesn’t work for me. Yes, it’s taken my dumb ass a long time to realise that, but I have now. So, better late than never.

The next stage will be to leave it until the new year and then start reading through it with a pen and paper and figure out exactly what I need to do to get it to where I want it. This is going to be a much deeper dive into editing than I’ve tried before and I hope I have the patience for it. I may just read through a chapter at a time so it doesn’t get tedious like it has done in the past.

Something I want to get in the habit of in the future is writing with a notepad to make notes as I’m going. Character names, ages, location names, and so on. Anything that is relevant. My drafts are full of XXX as placeholders when I forget a detail that I have put in earlier. I’m hoping it won’t slow me up too much, but if it does I might just read through what I’ve written at the end of the day and make those notes then, and tweaked any mistakes like grammar etc. at the same time. Until I try it though, I can’t say how it’s going to work.

Yes, I did dance around my office!

I really want to refine my process next year. Figure out what is the best way for me to work and then grow on it. It’s all about progress and growth. It doesn’t matter how many words I write in a year, if I never finish anything then it’s all pointless. I won’t be growing as a writer, and as a human being. I do have goals for next year, I’ve typed them up and pinned them over my desk, I might have also written a few goals for 2022 down as well. I might be pushing myself a bit too hard, but I need to know what I can take. I will have failures, but I’m also going to have victories. I need to learn from both in going forward or those same mistakes are just going to be repeated and, like writing a million words, absolutely useless if I’m not finishing anything.

I’m going to take the afternoon off and do some gaming and decide what I want to work on next. I’ll likely get back onto Black Blood but I’m always more productive when I’m not just cracking on with one project.

Rock on folks!