Good Afternoon, 16th April 2021

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.

Have a good one, folks!

Good Morning, 15th April, 2021

Good Morning! How are we all doing today?

Yesterday was not a good writing day. I felt a little down and normally writing can snap me outta it, but nada. I looked at three different short stories that I’m working on and nothing. I tried writing something new, but nothing came forth. So after about half an hour of trying I gave up. So I napped and watched The Simpsons.

After I’d showered and eaten though, a scene came to mind for a short story that I wrote years ago and am planning on rewriting. It was a piece of dialogue between two characters and it just kept growing. So I grabbed my laptop and wrote it out, 609 words. Then, although it was getting a little late I wanted to get some editing done on Penal Earth. I was going to wait till May to get started on this but that urge to do something was still there. I also think there was a little guilt as well at not being able to get anything done earlier in the day.

I always feel better when I’ve got work done. Okay, I still slept crappy but that’s just my life at the moment. But I woke up feeling ready to get a shit tonne done today. I’m not gonna go mad, and I’m gonna try something later that I haven’t done in ages and see how that goes but I do feel good right now. So I’m gonna work till about 10am and then get a few pieces around the house done and then I’ll see about doing a bit more with the words.

Raven watching the dust particles in the sunlight (and yes, she’s been bouncing around trying to catch them!)

Right, I’m going to start with some editing. I’m not sure what I want to write that’s new this morning, so I’ll start with editing and see how I go.

Have a great day, folks!

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.

12th of April 2021

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.

Good night, folks! Be safe and be kind!

11th April 2021 (Draft Done!)

This draft of Black Blood is DONE!!!!!! 1711 words its taken, and yes a ton of editing later on but it’s a completed draft!

I’ve also got my next weeks writing mapped out. So, happy writer here!

Onto the next project!

Good Morning, 11th of April 2021

Hey folks, how are we all doing today? It is a rather gorgeous day here in my part of the UK and I’ve got a great view from my office window of fields and the farm my Dad worked at for most of his working life. It’s a sight that I will always adore.

But, to writing! I do have some bits and pieces in the garden to do with my folks today, which I’m looking forward to. Be good to get my hands dirty. I will have loads of time to write though. I feel like I’m so damn close to wrapping up this draft of Black Blood and I’d really like to bring it home today.

I also have to map out next week’s writing rota. Something I’ve learnt this week is that I can’t load up my days off if I’ve had three of four work days between them. I am just too wiped out to have a good crack at a heavily productive day. What I’m tempted to do is to line up just a couple of items to do for days in those instances. You how, make easy to achieve goals, which once I’ve done might be enough to to of got me rolling and I end up massively surpassing the small goals I set for the day. Worth a try I think.

Right folks, time to get stuck into Black Blood. Have a great day, everyone!

Dizzy having cuddles last night ☺️

10th of April 2021 (2)

Hey folks! Although I didn’t wrap up this draft of Black Blood I did add another 1500 or so words to the 500+ that I wrote this morning for a total of 2110 words for the day. Hopefully come tomorrow I’ll be able to wrap this sod up! I am so ready to be done with this draft.

Once it’s done I can move onto the next stage of Penal Earth, which will be a digital read through. I’m tempted to change things a little with my process and do two read throughs. Do the first one where I’ll make the changes as I go, and then a few weeks later go through it again to see what else I pick up. I’ll still do a red pen edit because I find an out loud read always finds bits and pieces that other edit passes don’t.

I had to get into proper game mode today!

With Penal Earth, I’m going to submit it to publishers. I’ve got my dream ones I’ll send it to first and see how well I do. I’m not expecting to get it accepted, and I can always self pub it if it doesn’t, but it’s not going to hurt to send it out to editors and smaller presses that I respect. That’s why I’m determined to do a good job with it. The zombie will be my first step into putting my work out there, and it has to be good. But Penal Earth is a full length novel that is part one of a trilogy. Now, part of me thinks I should just get something written which is a one and done, but with a few threads that I could pick up if it does well, but Penal Earth I’ve got a lot of confidence in, and if it doesn’t do well I can always self pub the rest of the trilogy when the rights revert to me or I manage to work it so I can publish them sooner. That’s a bridge I’ll cross when the time comes though.

Right, seeing is I’ve exhausted my creative wells today I’m going to watched sitcoms and tidy up before dinner.

Have a super day, folks!

I finished First and Only the other day, so now onto book two of the Gaunts Ghosts series, Ghostmaker.

10th April 2021

Good afternoon, folks! I’ve had a change of plans for today which resulted in no day job today. I’ve already written this morning as I thought I was working but will I’m going to do a little more now this afternoon.

I think I’m actually in the endgame of Black Blood now, I can see the ducks I need to line up, although I’ll need to do more to connect them when I come to the editing phases.

Right, no more procrastinating. Time to get some words wrangled.

A grumpy Dizzy

Good Morning, 9th of April 2021

Morning Folks! How are we all doing today?

I didn’t get any writing done yesterday but have today to get cracking. I have a phone call to make, which’ll mean I’ll no doubt be on hold for a fair chunk of the next few hours but hey ho! That’s what corporations are like.

But if I’m on hold it means I can write. More Black Blood today, I still feel like the ending of this story is approaching and it’s time to wrap this bastard up! There is going to be a lot of work when I come to edit it, but the changes I’m thinking about will make the story stronger.

Right, I’m not going to ramble on. I’m going to get cracking and make the most of my day off from the day job.

Raven the other day 🙂

April 7th 2021

Good morning, folks!

How are we all doing today? I managed to write 1012 words yesterday on Black Blood. They were good words as well. I wrote a little snippet for this story the other week before work while I was sitting in my car in silence. What I wrote then was really good. So yesterday I wrote in silence. Normally I have YouTube playing in the background and this has worked for me for years, but now not so much. So I’m going to go back to silence while writing for a while and see how I get along with it. The two recent occasions might have just been me in the flow but it’s not going to hurt to find out.

Right, no time to waste today. Time to wrangle some words!

Have a random picture of Raven snoozing