Good Morning 14th April, 2021 (Make Art Uncomfortable)

Hey folks, how are we all doing today?

Yesterday I wrote 336 words on a short story but also did a lot of research for the same short story, and I’ve come to the decision that I’m just gonna go balls to the walls and yet loose. I’m not going to worry about grounding it in reality. I’m just gonna try and make it batshit crazy.

I’m having trouble letting go when I write recently. Stephen King said in On Writing that you have to write like an orphan, or words to that effect. I was reminded of this when watching the film M.F.A. recently. At the end of the film there’s a line where it basically says art shouldn’t just preserve the beauty of life, but also the brutality. Make art uncomfortable. I love this message. So many of us grow up listening to music about good love, or films where everyone lives happily ever after.

Art is different for everyone. Some people thrive on the uncomfortable while others thrive on a good old romcom. Everyone is different and we embrace different things. For me, what I write, people will find uncomfortable. But some will find it fun. I can watch Saw movies with barely a flinch at the content, but watched The VVitch and The Ritual, made me squirm in my seat. But there are different degrees of being uncomfortable. Listening to the audiobooks of The Girl Next Door by Jack Ketchum and What Good Girls Do by Jonathan Butcher made me very uncomfortable. Even to the point where I had to stop listening to them. M.F.A. falls into that grouping. Although not as extreme as I Spit On Your Grave, it’s still a content matter that is not pleasant and when done wrong, without the respect the topic deserves it just makes a whole other level of horrific.

For films like The Vvitch and The Ritual, these made me uncomfortable because there’s a witchcraft/cult elements to them. An unknown factor that made me uncomfortable in a way I’d yet to experience. It’s something I’m still trying to put my finger on exactly why I find it uncomfortable.

Another book that made me uncomfortable is The Silence by Tim Lebbon. This one I had to stop listening to three times. It’s got a quiet brutality to it, one which I can see happening. There’s three distinct moments in The Silence which I could see myself being in that situation. Having to make an uncomfortable decision.

Not being scared to write things which people will be uncomfortable with or offended by is something I need to be better with. I’m not going to write something just because it’s shocking. I don’t think that works and people tend to see through things like that. I’ll strive to write what the story is asking for.

Right, speaking of writing it’s time to get a few hours done.

Rock on folks, never give up on that dream. Never let someone take it away or belittle it or you. Just keep going.

Zero Words Saturday

Yesterday I wrote nothing aside from a few random notes for different projects. Saturdays are quite often a miss day for me when it comes to writing. Between work, cleaning out the henhouse, going out or staying in and blitzing a few movies or a boxset I just don’t seem to be able to get myself into a mindset to write on a Saturday. As I think about it I really need to do something about that. In On Writing by Stephen King, King says that he writes every day and that is something that I’m working on. Even if I can just write 250 words (my daily minimum) then that is words written.

On to today though. This morning, in about fifteen minutes, I’ll be off down to Owen’s so we can go through The Space Watch re-write outline. We’ve also got to skim through some Beta Readers note on two short stories from this universe as well. Then I’m going to get that minimum word count done for the day and then I’d like to say I’ll be starting the next draft of last years NaNoWriMo, but I’m not holding my breath on that one. I think It’s more likely I’ll start the early outlining process for what could be the next story after The Space Watch.

A story idea that has been circling my grey matter is one which I was using as a bit of a frustration exercise where I was writing my frustrations with a few of life’s elements into this story. My friend and writing partner Chrystalyn recommended it, but after a few thousand words the story sizzled out and I left it. It’s coming back though, I’m seeing ways to expand it, I’m seeing more of the characters and the background setting its in. I’m at the point now where I think I’m going to have to create a file to be putting notes in. I’m thinking this’ll be my second to next solo piece I work on.

That’s me done rambling for now. I’m not proof reading this as I haven’t got time, so feel free to point out the typos, and have a great day everyone!

Good Morning Tuesday

I was off out doing a little christmas shopping last night, so by the time I got home and sorted out it was 9pm that I started writing. Hitting that minimum of a 1000 words a day was hard last night but I still managed it.
Just a few months ago I wouldn’t have written at all, I would have just got home and put my feet up thinking that I’ll just carry on tomorrow(today) and put my feet up for what was left of the evening.
I’m trying to get some writing done every day. Stephen King says in his book On Writing that he writes everyday, regardless of what the day is. That’s a habit and mentality that I’m trying to stamp into myself. Even with the Christmas season coming this is something I’m going to do. If I can easily make an hour to write on a busy day like it was yesterday then I can sneak off for a cheeky hour on Christmas day to get some words written.

Speaking of being busy, I’d better log out and go and get ready for the day job. What ever you’re all doing today I hope you’re productive and successful.

Good Morning!

Good morning wherever you are, or good afternoon or evening depending on when you are reading this. It’s morning here in cloudy England but apparently the sun will be making an appearance at some stage during the day.

Despite a dreary start to the day I am feeling quite energised now and I’m feeling like I need to fire myself up a little. So I thought I’d write a blog post 😀

As I said in a post last night, I am listening to On Writing by the awesome Stephen King and this has really inspired me to get my arse into gear and get some fiction done. As some of you may know I finished a draft of Avoiding The Game and I’m now little that breath a little before looking at it again so I’m working on Project Apollo to see where I went wrong with it and to start planning the rest of the story. I’ve only got about 20k words of it so it needs a middle and an end. I’d also like to add more to the start of the story so that needs to be roughly plotted out too. Owen has some good notes on it too.
I was concerned that I had lost my way with it as I felt the last part of what I’ve so far done drifted a little, but after reading it last night I’ve seen that its not bad, some of the writing is weak but that can be fixed. I was concerned that the story dropped off but I think it’s okay, or will be with a little tweaking.
So the next stage is to get on the blower to Owen and do some plotting and get actually writing once more 🙂

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Taking Insperation

While at work today I have been listening to On Writing by Stephen King(I have the audiobook not the paper edition). This is his book on the art of writing, but its also a bit of an autobiography. I’ve got about an hour and a half to go of it and it is an amazing listen. King himself narrates it and this gives it a much more heartfelt feel. He is direct and honest with his words and the advice he gives and its Stephen King! The man has written a shed load of books and short stories and is arguably one of the greatest writers of his generation. So it’s not like someone who has only had a couple of little sales here and there.

In the audio version King is also very easy to listen to and I would recommend that people get hold of this version because, as I said earlier it is a very heartfelt reading. What I have taken from it mostly though is inspiration. I will learn many things from this about the craft of writing but it is the sheer love of writing that we get from King that has struck a cord inside of me.

Despite my personal doubts I have been told that I can write and listening to King makes me feel like I am wasting what may be talent but not getting my arse into gear and getting the words on the page. Getting editing done and getting published.

I’ve asked Tracie to tell me to listen to On Writing whenever I feel down about my writing because I think it will inspire me to get cracking once more 🙂

One thing that King said was that writers need to read, this I know but I really need to get into gear and get more read. I’m going to get more audiobooks which will help me get some more good fiction read/listened (see previous post about audiobooks). That said I’m just about to start reading the second Hunger Games book, Catching Fire 🙂

On a more sober note, as I am writing this I am watching news reports about the Boston Marathon bombings. Words fail me when these things happen and my thoughts go out to anyone who is affected by this terrible act.


I have listened to a lot of podcast books. For those of you who are unaware of podcasted novels they are books that are serialised, normally for free as well. Now I have listened to a lot of these over the last couple of years and have discovered some amazing writers like Scott Sigler, J.C. Hutchins, Mur Lafferty, Nathan Lowell, Phil Rossi and many more. For some reason though I’ve never really listened to audiobooks.

I have a few on my iPod but nowhere near as many podcasts though. Maybe part of this is because podcasts are free, but another reason may be because I’ve not enjoyed a couple of audiobooks that I did buy. A couple of which were also abridged and I felt I was loosing out a little because of this. Last week though I downloaded Stephen King’s On Writing and a zombie one, I forgot the name. Ill mention it in a future post. These two downloads have kind of opened a door in my head and I want to download more. This is logical for me because I am a slow reader and I work a job where I can have my iPod and listen to whatever I wish. I do need to get through more books and this may be the way that I can get more fiction consumed 🙂