Howdy folks, I’m not feeling groggy this morning. I also didn’t have to drag myself out of bed kicking and screaming either.
I’ve spent the last hour or so on a personal matter and will be word wrangling until it’s time to get ready for work.
I should be doing some of the work for Black Blood this morning, but I feel like I’m rolling with the vampire stories so I’m going to continue on that. I haven’t written down my goals for the month on my white board but I think finishing that draft is going to be near the top of the list.
I have just realised I’ve missed a deadline for a short story submission though, I’ll go online and double check in a minute. It’s not the end of the world if I have missed it, I may find somewhere else for the story or put it in my own collection at some point.
Doing afternoon/evening shifts is something I’m enjoying, partly because I feel like I’m getting more written when I’m on them but I need to maximise my time while doing them as well. But, then that’s true of when I’m on early shifts. I need to work out how to make the most of those days so I can be productive, or is that a target I’m being unrealistic with? Should I just be trying to get a bit of work done and then on my days off have a proper focused day? Or shale I just wing it like I normally do?
A very groggy good morning from me. Another night of unsettled sleep, desktop not working, and Dizzy spilling a little of my tea means I’m really not feeling it this morning. I could have easily gone back to bed or popped a streaming service on for a few hours until I go to work, but I’ve force myself outta bed and to my desk, and with a purring Dizzy on my lap, I’m almost ready to go.
Today, I’m going to keep it simple, work on the vampire book. That’s what I’m most familiar with so I won’t have to dive into something I haven’t worked on for a while. I’ve got to list down what I want to achieve this month in the next couple of days as well. I’ll be rolling a few over from last month, but not too many. There’s one on there, the bounty hunter story, that I think I’m going to end up rewriting. I like the characters, I like the concept, but it feels a little weak at the moment.
I’ve got mainly lates this week, and I’m finding I’m more productive when I have a few hours in the morning before work, and it’s a great vibe to go to work with, having been productive before I get to work. It sets a good mindset that I like.
Right, that said, I really want to get stuck in, hopefully it’ll wake me up a bit more and I can stop fighting the urge to get back to bed!
Oh, and somehow I’ve managed to pass 2000 posts here. I can’t remember when I started blogging, it was around 2010 I suppose, and I’d imagine those early posts were awful! but I’m still going, and a big thank you to everyone who reads my posts. It means a lot to me and I hope it’s helpful.
I’ve been awake about an hour and I’m just about to get going on my mornings writing before I go to work. I’m pulling myself kicking and screaming to the laptop today though. I slept, but I don’t feel like I had a settled night. I know I just need to wake up fully, and getting some work done will help.
Something I realised about myself a long time ago was that if I get a good start to the day then the day is almost always better. It gives me a positive mindset and a sense of accomplishment. So that no matter what else happens that day I’ve already been productive and that puts me in a fantastic mood for the rest of the day.
It was a struggle to get out of bed when I did today. I had an internal battle with going back to bed for a couple of hours. I don’t have to be at work until this afternoon, so I could have had a few more hours but that felt like a surrender. I preach about being productive and I do that a lot to try and trick myself into doing it. Sometimes it’s easier to just roll over, but then nothing would have got done. I’ve got a few hours where I can just sit and work. I can sleep after work.
Just a quick little post for the day. I pulled a few extra hours at work so am wiped out but I will get a little writing work done this evening. What I’d planned to do today I’ll roll over and do it tomorrow. I’m working Sunday, so I’m not expecting to get a lot done then as it’s an all day shift essentially.
I’ve mainly early shifts for the next week or so, so what I’m going to do is try and make sure I’m in bed by ten each night. Then when I finish my shift at about midday I get home, lunch, shower and then work for two hours. Then chill out until 10pm when I get my head down.
Part of chilling out will be reading. So I might stretch lights out till 10:30pm, if I’m reading.
Right, I’m going to get some work done, not sure what project yet but probably on Vampire Era.
I likely won’t blog again tonight, so I hope you’re all good and I’ll be back soon!
I edited yesterday, but can’t remember how many words I did. It was over a 1000 but less than 2000.
Something that struck me yesterday was that maybe I need to try and have a schedule so that when I’m at work I do one light day writing, and then one heavy day writing. Especially when I’m doing early shifts and I’m not getting as much sleep as I’d like this is something that’s worth a try.
Sitting here writing that and I can’t help but think that none of these little things I’m doing are going to really change the way I work. Even though I’m trying not to sit on my bed and work while watching this or that, I’m still doing it. Mostly on work days, which are more often then not an early shift, and I do get work done. Yesterday I would have got more done if I’d started earlier in the afternoon after work. But I was wiped out so I laid down with a movie on in the hope I’d drift off and have a nap, which didn’t happen. But I find I need that downtime after work sometimes. I just need to let my brain wind down from the day job and slide into a mental space that’s a little more favourable to some form of creativity.
Right, time for me to get into work and think about getting cracking.
So today has been a slow one in starting. I dragged myself outta bed at 10am and I’ve felt tired, I’ve only just warmed up but am still feeling dead tired. I slept but I slept really badly, I think it was a very unsettled night for me. I’m trying to pinpoint why I didn’t sleep well, but haven’t been able to.
Needless to say, I’ve not got any writing done today. I’m set up to get cracking, but have looked at the next scene to look at and it’s one that’ll pretty much be the start of an entire sequence that will need all but a whole rewrite. So, I’m bloody grateful I’m not navigating that today. It’s just a read through and note taking. I’ll make edits, even though I’m not going to keep these scenes I think it’s a good idea to keep this editing mind on and it’s all experience at the end of the day.
I have written a few words today. Just a few though, for a project for a publisher that I’m looking forward to participating in. I’m still not sure how I’m going to get this story done just yet. I’ve got a good idea of the feel of the story, but it’s executing it and I haven’t really figured out the story yet either. This is the story I was talking about recently where I was saying I need to sit down and do some brainstorming.
Something I did forget to mention the other day was that I have submitted a couple of stories to an anthology. I had a mild panic when I thought I’d screwed up by not adhering to the submission guidelines, but after emailing the editor they clarified that I haven’t. So I’m relieved by that and I’m now eagerly waiting to find out how they’ve done.
Right, I’m going to crack on with this Black Blood read through!
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.
All my plans for yesterday went right out the window when I fell asleep while writing and came within an inch of face planting my keyboard!
I did get a few words written, but a little less than half or what I’d planned to and I didn’t get any of the other half a dozen items I’d planned to do done.
Much of it is where I’m nearing the second week of my early’s at work, and it’s my fault because I need to be getting to bed a little earlier each night and as I said yesterday, I need to look at my work rota and adjust it to how tired I might be. Then even if I exceed what I’ve set a target for I’m not going to get annoyed for having not hit goals. Like I’m feeling a little at the moment.
I should have gone for a nice little target yesterday, but I was feeling overly confident from the day before.
Anyway! Today is a new day. I did get an early night last night, and I read for a second night running. Reading is something that I’ve not been able to pick up again after what this year has been, but I felt inspired by a friend and I’m making an active effort to read again.
I am not going to repeat yesterday’s mistakes. I do have a list of work I was planning to do yesterday, but I’m now going to aim to have that all done by the end of Sunday. I’ve got to stop being overly ambitious and be more realistic in my targets.
Today was a good day. I got some good sleep, first time in ten days or so. I wrote 1781 on NaNo and then 231 on a short story I wrote during NaNoWriMo 2019 for a total of 2012 for the day.
The short story I worked on in 2019 was one that I was done with. I’d not had any urge to edit it because I wasn’t happy with it and I couldn’t figure out how to fix it. Then today when I wasn’t even thinking about writing and BANG!!! The solution hit me and I had to write some of it down. Not much, just those few hundred words to serve ad a reminder when I come back to it.
I am now on par for NaNo. The last two days have wiped out my banked words. I still don’t need to write 1667 a day, but I’m going to try to as I’d like to get some more words banked when I can.
I also did some rearranging in my office today, and am a lot happier with it. I just need to find somewhere for my bin to go and then most bits and pieces have a home.
I also prepped for an appointment and then had the Zoom appointment. It was after that that I got the words down.
I cracked on and worked. That is something I need to push myself harder and be more consistent. Arse in chair and work! Simple as that. When I can’t get my arse in the chair, write when I have time. I’ve got Apple devices that are all synchronised, so no reason why I can’t write at any opportunity I have.
Time to get my head where it needs to be. I definitely have more than enough time.
Elements of Horror Book Two: Air from Red Cape Publishing is the fourth book I’ve had a story published in. Walking was a story that had a few twists and turns in it but I’m very happy with how it ended up. I was skimming through it earlier as I looked for a detail and I found myself smiling as I looked through. I’m not at the stage where I’ve discovered who I am as a writer, or what my style is. Sometimes I think I’m not quite self-aware enough to know that yet. Or I’ve not read enough of the genre I’m working in. Whatever the reason is, I’ve not found who I am as a writer yet. Each thing I write is more often then not coming from the gut, especially short fiction, I think Walking is a prime example of that. So, please hit the link and check it out.