NaNoWriMo 2020: Day Twenty-One

Good evening, all. One very tired human being here. Work was good, had a good laugh, and a work out. Since coming off leave at the start of the week I’ve not really had a shop floor shift (I’m a retail worker), and today made me realise that maybe I relaxed a little too much during my time off!

Words wise, as I overlaid I didn’t get as much written as I should have done, only 480 words, but I went in a direction that I wasn’t expecting. It’s also made me realise I’ve been playing it safe a little too much. Time to get brutal and bloody! Mwahahahahahaha!

I write this blog for myself. When I started out blogging I wasn’t sure what I was doing. Over the years it’s evolved into what this is now. I share word counts not to brag, not to get one over over writers. I do it because it reminds me that some days I can’t get words out, while other days I can knock out 2k easy.

If you read this and think or see other people talking about their word counts, don’t get put off if you aren’t getting the numbers that other people do. Especially during NaNoWriMo it can be off putting seeing so many hitting big counts, but as long as you’re getting words down it doesn’t matter. A hundred words a day, you’ll have a story completed before you know it!

Just write and edit at the pace you’re comfortable with.

My next published piece was in Corona-Nation Street. My story ‘The Wank Diaries’ has an interesting journey. I wrote it with the intention of submitted it to this anthology but I wrote it and wasn’t happy with how it came out. So I dropped it. This was when I wasn’t in the best of places. Then I had a big change in my life and I was lower than I’d ever been in my life. I wasn’t writing, but I saw Burdizzo Books MC Matthew Cash putting a post online reminding people of the deadline, so I looked at it again. Scrapping the ending immediately. What I then wrote I could never have predicted and wasn’t quite sure I was capable of writing. So much of the despair I was feeling came out in the ending of this story. Brian Keene calls it ‘Bleeding on the page’ and I definitely bled on the page here. I’m very proud of this story. It gave me something to focus on and get writing again.

NaNoWriMo 2020: Day Fifteen

Wow, halfway through the month already. I’ve had a chill out day today, which I need to stop doing. I need to get up on a day off, have breakfast, get dressed, get writing. Simple as that. No thinking I’ll watch an episode of this or that (today it was The Queen’s Gambit, which was lethal as I’ve all but watched it now). I still got 2317 today, but I could have got 3000 words done, if not 3500. I know I have the ability to do that when I’ve got a day off and I should be doing it. For the speed I can write at and the time I have, it is easily doable.

I was on a Facebook live event tonight with the Mando Method Podcast folks. It was a lot of fun and in the hour before it I managed to crack out about a 1300 words to add to the 1000 or so I’d already written throughout the course of the day. We talked about NaNoWriMo at the halfway point and how we were all progressing. We touched a few other topics as well. It was a lot of fun, its been a while since I laughed that hard. It was really good to talk to these folks in real time as well. Armand Rosamilia and Chuck Buda have been very supportive to myself and many other writers. Please give it a watch 😊

Grumpy cat stare!

I’ve got one more days leave before getting back to my normal working week, so writing time will be cut down. But I can still get all the words done I need to, and more. I’m going to set myself a target of an hour at my desk a day. That’s head down and writing/editing. I’m not going to set word count goals at the moment, I want to get in the habit of spending that hour a day at the desk. My biggest enemy is myself and in particular my lack of discipline. That is something I need to overcome.

Under The Weather is the third book I’ve been published in. With my story, The Snow, I knew roughly what I wanted to do with it but it took a few little twists and turns along the way, but it was never a difficult write. One major element did change in the story which changed the entire theme of the tale. I still think it works, and it’s one that I’m really happy with.

Well folks, that’s me wrapping it for the night. I’m gonna watch a bit of tv and then read a little before bed. I’m aiming for an early start tomorrow.

NaNoWriMo 2020: Day Fourteen

Good evening, folks! How are we all doing tonight? Today I’ve written 1592 words and past the halfway mark! I’m currently at 25751 words for the month.

It was a good productive day’s writing before I went into work for a little training. I was planning on getting some more words down tonight, but I think I might just chill out a little bit and have a good go at it tomorrow.

I started writing this post at 6pm and after dinner, washing up, a couple of emails, and extensive procrastination I’m back to finish this post! 😀

Right, where was I?

Yes, getting back at the wording tomorrow. I’m still ahead bit I’m still not getting back to being on 1667 words a day. I wasn’t far off today, so tomorrow I’m going to push through, get the 1667 words and then maybe push through to the 2k mark. But we’ll see.

12 Days of Christmas 2017 was the second anthology I was published in. This was one of the easiest stories I’ve ever written. The anthology has stories inspired by the 12 Days of Christmas song. I snagged Three French Hens. I had a story in mind and I think I wrote it over three days. I had plenty of experiences from years of keeping hens to use when I was putting the story together (if you’ve read it, which ones do you think are true and which ones aren’t?). The most difficult part was working these experiences into a story, and when I say difficult, it really wasn’t. Although it’s not the longest story I’ve written, I definitely think it’s a fun one.

We don’t keep hens anymore, but it was fun and very interesting while we did.

NaNoWriMo 2020: Day Twelve

1185 words written today. I’m at the point with NaNo where the urge to edit is kicking in! So I might try and do some editing on a short story and see if that quells that urge.

I didn’t write as much as I wanted to, today. I had a phone call just after midday and then a friend who is a very skilled writer text me asking if had five minutes to brainstorm a problem she had with a story she’s gearing up to write. That five minutes ended up being three hours, it a damn good three hours. It was good working ideas out and just letter her talk out her ideas. The story itself sounds damn good and I’m kinda itching to read it. So I’m gonna start bugging her to make sure she’s writing, because that’s what friends do!

The first story I ever had published was in Sparks, from Burdizzo Books. I still can’t quite believe that I’m a published author, but I have proof of it, even if I have to pinch myself once in a while. My story, ‘The Last Charge’ is one that was very easy to write. I wrote from the hip, no real idea where I was going with it. Looking back, I’d have done a few things differently, but I don’t look at it and cringe. It’s still something that I am still very proud of.

Imposter syndrome is real, very real. But I don’t feel as bad about having it hitting me once in a while when I hear of well established authors suffering from it. What beats over that feeling is the buzz you get from having a story published. I’ve only encountered two things that have given me a better high (no, not narcotics!).

Right, folks! I’m settling in for a movie (The Cave), and then a busy day tomorrow.

Have a good one folks!

29th October 2020

Hey folks! 772 words today and planning for NaNo, as well as tidying up my office so it’s ready for Sunday evening when I get home from work.

In other news I can reveal what the secret project I’ve mentioned a few times is. It’s an anthology called Beneath The Leaves from Burdizzo Books to celebrate the birthday (I’m not saying which birthday but it’s a milestone one) for Em Dehaney. Here’s the link:

It was a massive honour to be included in Beneath The Leaves as Em is a fantastic human being and I think the work everyone has put into this shows that.

Horror movie and research 😊

I’ve not felt this capable for a very long time. I’ve got one element in my life which isn’t how I wish it was, but that’s not just something that I can fix with a flick of a switch.

Right, another busy day tomorrow. So I’m going to read a little of Beneath The Leaves and then bed.

Night folks!

26th of October 2020

Good evening folks! 547 (I think) words tonight. It’s definitely in that region but I haven’t got my data in front of me.

I could have written more, but I fell asleep this afternoon. I was a little down and that seems to be a coping mechanism for me: sleep!

Another minor hindrance to the writing process!

NaNoWriMo is less than a week away! Who’s excited? I know I am! I’ve got a little more prep work to do and then I’m ready to go. I can’t wait!

I think she was cold! But I don’t mind. And with her tucked up there I can still have my laptop on my lap 🙂

A bit of a short and swift post tonight. I’m pooped and have an early start tomorrow. But have fun, remember, it’s not hard to be kind.

Good Morning 25th of October 2020

Good morning folks! I hope all reading this are well.

I’ve enjoyed the extra hour in bed that the clocks going back have given me. On the downside it means a later start to writing today than I had planned, but I’ll still get a few hours done. I’m hoping for a mix of writing, editing, and planning. This time next week, NaNoWriMo will have started and I’d like to be a little more prepared than I am at the moment.

Dizzy looking grumpy but purring away 😊

I have had pretty much the whole week off. I needed to ease off in one area of my life and writing is the easiest to do that with. But the silver lining to that is it’s helped me solve a couple of little hiccups I’ve had on projects. I can see how to improve a short story in my vampire book now, and my war child story. With the war child story it was a moment where if I was in a cartoon I’d have a lightbulb appear above my head. The problem is I’m now itching to write it! But it’s got to wait which is torture!

I can’t remember where I heard this but apparently someone once said “a non-writing writer is someone courting madness” I may not have the quote word for word spot on but it’s something that does apply to me. When I’m not writing I’m finding it harder to deal with the everyday. So I’m never going to for more than A few days not writing. I’ve suffered from that mistake and I won’t let it happen again.

In November I’m going to have more time to write than I ever have done and I cannot wait. I will be blowing each day (hopefully) and I am 100% going to write a novel this year. I’ve done short story collections for the last two NaNo’s, which worked well the first year but not so much last year.

Fills my heart when friends and family send me things like this! 😊❤️😊

I’m super excited for NaNo this year. I’m going to miss the in-person meets, but we’ve worked on ways to do online events and hopefully have one that’s going to work out well.

Okay folks, I’m off to start word wrangling! Have a good day one and all!

Good Morning 16th October 2020

I’ve had a strange couple of days. I’ve not had work today and yesterday but had an urgent matter to see to yesterday that was unexpected but that took up the morning. Then in the afternoon I prepped for a weekly appointment. I’ve been trying to do this the right way, which means its a couple of hours at the least I dedicate to it, and I think it’s really beginning to pay off. And yes, I’m going to be vague about it.

So after all that, I was a bit beat. So I didn’t write yesterday. The day before I didn’t write much either because I fell asleep. I did have a productive meeting via Discord with fella ML’s from the Kent region for NaNoWriMo. It was a lot of fun and I’ve not laughed that hard in a very long time. We did also get some bits and pieces sorted out for this years NaNoWriMo as well. It’s going to be a strange one as we won’t be having any write-ins at all. NaNo HQ have said that there will be none, so there will be none. It’s just not worth the risk, and I fully agree. If you’ve been reading this blog for a long time then you’ll know how much I love going to write-ins. I think they are one a great way of being reminded that even though writing is a solitary act, for the most of it, we’re not the only ones doing it. But, we don’t have them this year so we’re working on ways to make it a memorable year for people while doing it all virtually.

In other news from my little corner of the world, the paperback for Corona-Nation St is now out! I have my copy and I’m super happy with it. I’d given up on this story until after I’d moved back to my parents and started to get myself sorted. Matthew Cash, the ruler of Burdizzo Books, posted a reminder about the submission call and it spurred me to revisit my piece. I had a complete story but it just didn’t feel right. So I looked at it, and ended up rewriting the ending, which changed the entire tone of the story. I hope it works. I feel much happier with the story as it is now. I did bleed into the story, but that’s why I think it works. Although I didn’t literally do what the character does I channeled some of my feelings and emotions into it.

So pretty 😊

The pre-order for It Came From The Darkness is also available now! Like Corona-Nation St, this is a charity anthology full of flash fiction. This was an invite only and I am so proud to have been invited to it.

So, please check both of these out.

I’ve got an errand to run today before Stefan from Stefan’s Daily Gaming comes over for a few hours to game. If you haven’t checked out his stuff, please do! He’s a great guy and a very dear friend.

So I’ve got a couple of hours this afternoon to write. So I am going to try and make the most of that time.

13th October 2020

Good evening folks! Just a quick post tonight. I wrote 1330 words on three different stories today. Two of which are brand new, one of them I start at silly o’clock this morning when I couldn’t sleep!

The paperback of Corona-Nation Street is now available for purchase! It features my story ‘The Wank Diaries’ along with many others. Please click the link and check it out. All the proceeds go to charity.

I am going to wrap it up there. I’ve a busy day tomorrow and am hoping for more sleep tonight than I had last night!

New Release Coming Soon!

Good evening folks! I have good news. I’ve had a story accepted for a charity anthology of drabbles (100 word stories).

Here is the blurb:

It Came From the Darkness is a unique collection of drabbles (stories of 100 words exactly) and artwork, compiled by Red Cape Publishing and Philip Rogers 101 PR in aid of the Max the Brave Fund. A huge number of horror writers, poets, artists, and film makers have come together to support the cause and offer the reader something special. Each piece of writing begins with the same five words, but the stories themselves are all wonderfully varied. So dig in, take each tale one bloody bite at a time, and beware of what comes from the darkness.

Includes stories from David Owain Hughes, Matthew V. Brockmeyer, Tim Lebbon, Lou Yardley, Cortney Palm, Lee Franklin, MJ Dixon, Singh Lall, and many, many more.

Cover artwork by David Paul Harris (www.davidpaulharris.com)

Please click this link for the announcement post.

I was very honoured and incredibly flattered to have been invited to submit to this one, and even more so when I got accepted. The Max The Brave Fund is very worthy and I hope we make a nice amount of money for them.

Seriously loving this cover!

The pre-order should be up on the 23rd of October, with a release scheduled for the 30th of October. So please keep an eye out for it, but if you miss it I will be posting about it here. Also, follow the hashtag #ItCameFromTheDarkness on social media to keep up to date as well.