Hey folks, been a busy couple of weeks, so little writing but lots of brainstorming. I’ve got four or five projects that I’m beginning to get a really good idea of what I want to do with them. I also re-edited my kidnapping story, despite the date for its anthology submission being long past, I can submit it elsewhere or self-publish it (I have plans).
I am very stuck on Black Blood at the moment. I’ve been trying to write a sequence which is vital to the story and I’m not feeling it. Maybe I need to think it out a little more, I don’t know, but at the moment it’s just not clicking. I think I’ve got a good basis for it, that it’ll work, but I’ve just got to suss it out. I honestly don’t think I’m far away from it, I think I just need one little element to slot into place and then it’ll come together.
I will also be looking at the two short stories I’ve been working on that take place in the Penal Earth world. One of them I think I’ve got a good core for the story, whereas the other one is a lot more bare bones and I haven’t found the real story to it yet. I don’t think I’m far off, it’s tickling the periphery of my conscious but it isn’t revealing itself just yet. I’m going to read what I’ve written of these two and then brainstorm.
I’ve not done this sort of brainstorming for years, and I’m really enjoying it.
Right, I’m off. I hope y’all have a fantastic day and week ahead.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
I have spent most of this afternoon reading through Lovers and making notes. I’ve got some good ideas jotted down but will spend time building it before I start the new draft. I don’t want to rush it, I’ve got a history of diving in head first and blowing myself out of steam too soon. So I’ll hold off, let the ideas run around my brain, and see what comes from it.
What helps in holding off is I have Penal Earth and Black Blood (not wild about that title) in progress. Penal Earth is in the endgame and I think I’ll be wrapping it up soon. I’m not willing to say in the next day or so, but maybe by the end of the year.
Black Blood is a little further out, and I’m slightly tempted to leave that till the next year and let it breath a little before I get it finished.
I did write this afternoon as well, only 715 words but I knew I wanted to get some words down today. Hopefully it’ll lead me into a decent day’s work tomorrow.
The end of this year I’m planning on being very productive. I’ll be working a fair bit of the Christmas period, which doesn’t bother me but I’ll also have some time to get words wrangled.
Right folks, I’m off to chill out for the rest of the evening. Day off tomorrow, so aiming for a productive one.
I’ve had an writing off day. After I finished work this morning I found I was knackered when I got home and had a nap. When I woke up I felt more drained so decided to chill out. I’m off tomorrow and can get stuck in then, but I couldn’t not do any writing work. So I started preparing for the Lovers 2nd draft.
I am so pumped to be working on this one, I’ve got the feel for it now and know how I’m going to lay it out, I just need to get the bullet points out of my head and onto paper and then I can start fleshing out the details and get ready to write the second draft.
I’m ready for bed, so night all! Rock on and bed good to each other.
I have had a decent enough day. Spent a few hours this morning helping my parents close up their caravan for the winter. On the journey there and back I did a little prep work for NaNo and continued once I got home.
I’m in a much better position for NaNo now I’ve done some work for it, although it is far from mapped out.
No new words today. I’m going to try and get some down tomorrow before work.
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.
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.
Good evening folks! Although today didn’t go quite as planned, I had some family come over, I still managed to get 2152 words done. But no editing or planning. Obviously, I’m darn happy with that!
I knew yesterday I wanted a 2k day and knew I’d get it done. Maybe it was a case those few days off from writing recharged me, add in a couple of other little bits and pieces and it all may have contributed to being in the right place today. The trick I’ve got to learn is to always be able to write despite where my head is at.
That said, it’s likely not a trick. I probably just need more discipline.