Gooooooooood afternoon, folks! How are we all doing?
Yesterday I edited 10379 words on Penal Earth, and today I’ve got 9728 words edited.
I was going to hold off till next month to start on this edit and focus on three unfinished short stories the rest of this month, but when I started struggling to write I knew I had to do something to get myself back on track. I made a small start on Wednesday with 563 words edited. If I can do 10k or so a day, I’ll be done a week today. I’m not gonna bust my guts to get it done by then, I’m going to aim to have it done by the end of the month.
I did get in a situation where I was stuck on what to write. I couldn’t get my head around any of the three short stories that I wanted to work on and the story that is talking to me I’m not sure if I’m ready to work on it yet. I don’t want to just dive in and hope it works out, I think I’ve got a decent tale to tell in a setting that I think is going to be one I can play in for a few stories. So I want to think things out a little more before I just dive in.
Right, I’m going to wrap it up there. Good day’s process. I’m working a lot of making changes in my life so I’m happier in myself, and I think the changes are going to be a good start in moving forward.
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.
Good evening, folks. 720 words on a short story today. I set aside half an hour and ended up writing for forty minutes, which I like because it shows I got into the flow and didn’t stop when my timer went.
With this story I think I might go whole hog with it and just write it how it feels, which might be over the top in the worst kind of way. Or it could be over the top in the best possible way. Only time will tell!
Right, a short and sweet post tonight. It’s very freeing having got the Black Blood draft done. No guilt for working on something else.
Howdy folks! When I was in bed last night, not being able to sleep, I gave up trying and started writing and ended up writing 473 on a new story set in the Penal Earth universe. I haven’t read it since I wrote it, so it could suck! but who cares! everything can be fixed in edits!
I took time during my break to make some notes on the mermaid story, and it feels like I’m getting some good world building down. This story is beginning to fill out nicely, although its just occurred to me that I’ve not done too much on characters yet.
Anyway, after work I did a little work on the vampire book and added 182 words on that one while also carrying out edits. Not much, but I worked through a fair bit of what is a difficult scene.
Right, I’ve got an early start tomorrow. So I’m going to bed! Have a good one, folks!
596 today on the vampire book, but I also deleted 2466 words today. Before I deleted those words the overall word count was 48,800 words. At this rate I think this book will end up about 70,000 words. There’s a lot of story to go, but I can see the ending in sight.
I’ve got another late shift tomorrow, and where I’ve left this story today I will be getting stuck into a chunk where we discover a lot and there’s some good friction to it as well. I’m looking forward to getting stuck into that tomorrow! I’m hoping it’ll flow like the scenes I wrote yesterday. What I did today was more connecting the last scene and the next one together. It’s not a bridging scene as it opens up the next section of the story, it’s a small but key part of the mystery of a couple of characters deaths. But the next scene will be, hopefully, page turning!
Right, time to grab something to eat and then get ready for work! Rock on folks!
Last year was a mixed year for pretty much all of I would say. I’m no different. It was both the best and worst year of my life, from an amazing high to a low I didn’t know existed. If you’re a reader of my blog at petergermany.com you’ll know I’m not going to go into details on those moments. I talk about them because they did have an impact of writing. As you will see from the words I wrote and edited last year.
So, let’s get down to business:
January – 9011 words written
February – 11171 words written
March – 5691 words written
April – 562 words written
May – 1454 words written
June – 517 words written
July – 4524 words written, 39962 words edited
August – 14641 words written, 55323 words edited
September – 20471 words written, 7495 words edited
October – 15773 words written
November – 50615 words written (NaNoWriMo)
December – 13698 words written, 4477 words edited
Totals – 148128 words written, 107257 words edited
I only started tracking the words I edit in July which is why there are no numbers for them before that.
I was also published in three anthologies:
Corona-Nation Street from Burdizzo Books
Beneath The Leaves from Burdizzo Books
It Came From The Darkness from Red Cape Publishing and Phillip Rogers
I am so proud of these stories. My story in Corona-Nation Street, The Wank Diaries, had been written with this anthology in mind but I didn’t like the ending and with everything in life I’d forgotten about it until I’d seen a reminder pop up about it. So I rewrote the ending, which totally changed the tone of the story and I bled into it a lot. In hindsight maybe a little too much, now that I think back to it. But what it adds to the story I think gives it an impact that wasn’t there before.
The other two anthologies are ones I was invited into, with my story in Beneath The Leaves written long before life took a hard turn. My drabble in It Came From The Darkness was easy to write, almost impossible to get it down to the required 100 words!
Looking back now I’ve got the numbers right there, yeah, I’m incredibly happy with how much I achieved as a writer in 2020. There was a moment late in 2019 that I quit, then during the darkest moments of 2020 I didn’t make a decision but writing wasn’t going to be something I ever did again. When I started pulling myself clear of the dark hole I’d slipped into the words started coming again. I remember when I started blogging again last year, I talked about how I was struggling to get the words out again. The Wank Diaries got me going again. There was a deadline and I got it done in time.
That story got me back to doing what I needed to be doing, writing. Many things have helped me to get to the good place I’m in now, but that was a very distinct moment. Writing to me isn’t just a career. It’s part of my soul. Written into my DNA at the most primal level, and I’m never going to stop.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
Yesterday I started the day off well. I got up early and got work done. I took a member of my household to the dentist and while they were in there I did some scouting in Gravesend town centre, in particular the Civic Centre (see video for more). Once I got home though, I took a mental health hit.
Something small triggered it, something that I see often but yesterday was the first time it knocked me like it did. I didn’t hit rock bottom, but I did fall somewhat. This made it hard to sleep, I think I had maybe two hours altogether. Maybe three at the most, and most of that was today. I was up at 8am like I planned, like I was yesterday but I knew I had to get my head back down. I finally got up at about 10ish and have felt that lack of sleep all day. I’ve tried to nap this afternoon but with no joy. So I’m going to work for a little while, not long, maybe an hour, and then a bath and reading after dinner. Try to relax into sleep.
On the plus side I did get some writing done last night. A little bit on the vampire era, and the part of it I was working on struck me that it might be a part where people may assume that I’m taking from real life experiences a little too literal. I do bleed into my work. I take what I’ve experienced and put it into characters, but how I think I do it is I put the dark moments I’ve had into the stories, but not the situations. I may get close with the odd one but I’ve not got the urge to turn my life into literature, not 100%.
People ourselves into in our work is something that we all do, even if it’s something that’s subconscious. A lot of the time I don’t think we can help it. Writing, for me, is a great form of therapy. I can channel my emotions into my characters and I hope it makes them more real. More relatable.
Another plus side to last nights insomnia was I did look at the Vampire Era again. It’s on my to-do list but I’ve been so preoccupied with Penal Earth and Black Blood I hadn’t got around to looking at it. I’m going to start working on it, because it’s a rewrite and it’ll allow me to write while also working on editing and building worlds. I need to make sure I can find a way to be writing as well as working on the other elements of producing content.
If you’ve been reading my blog for a long time you’ll remember that was a time when I’d write a Good Morning, Sunday post each week. I used to write it while sitting in the living room, normally when my parents were at their caravan, before I started writing for the day. I used to work Monday through Saturday so Sundays were a day when I had to get words wrangled, but it almost always started off with me writing those blog posts. I’d have Dizzy sitting on the arm of the chair next to me, and our late doggo Pacey sitting on the floor by my chair. Now, I often work Sundays, but I have other days off during the week. So this pre-writing posts, which I write because they help wake up the productive part of my brain and soul, should be coming more often.
Right, down to today though. I had a lot I was planning to do on Friday that never got off the ground. I gave in and had a PJ day, although I did write a few words Friday evening. So today I’m going to try and knock some of the items off Friday’s to-do list, once I’ve found my diary!
I’d like to start off with writing, but have done the first draft of the story I finished yesterday so I might work on a story I’ve set in the Penal Earth universe. Yeah, that’ll do!
I’ve got to put together a list of details for an artist to do some sketches for Black Blood (okay, it’s my mum! She’s a fantastic artist and when discussing it with her she’s already come up with some good ideas that I worked into the last edit). I’ve already printed off a couple of satellite images of the area that this story primarily takes place in, so I’ll pass them onto her with the rest of the details. This is part of me adding details that I’ve written down over the month to the Scrivener file for this story. That’s going to take some time but it needs to be done. One of my goals for next month is to have the ending mapped out. I know what I want it to be, but I need to map it out so I can hopefully give it the punch I want it to have.
Where I’ve got this coming week off, I want to make it as productive as I can. So I’ve got a list of goals for it that I will hit! I haven’t gone mad and put too much on it. It’s a week off from work and I want some chill out time as well. I’d really love to get into Gears of War 5 and get that finished as well! I’ve a personal matter to see to as well, and I’ve got a socially distanced walk with a friend as well.
Covid isn’t something I’ve really talked about here, but I really should at some point. Both from a creative point of view as well as every day life. But that’s for another post.
Now, I’m going to get some work done! Have an awesome day, folks! Be kind and look through the darkness because there is always light!