Tag Archives: writing

Gardening & writing plans & books – oh my!

I have only written about one page towards a novel this week, because of sickness, but also because I am reading a little more than normal – mainly magazines based on gardening and permaculture.  I have no energy to garden yet and it is actually quite unlikely I will do much in the garden this year, but I am learning as much as I can whilst I am out of sorts.  I have reinjured my leg twice in the past two weeks and so mobility is now getting affected, I have an old break that never healed properly and the two separate injuries were heavily on this old break.

I have written approximately 5 pages towards the plans of a new novel for April’s NaNoWriMo as I do intend to participate this year.

I have also started writing a non-fiction book based on my current knowledge of gardening and self-sufficiency, hence the extra research too, I want to be thorough as I realised there is not enough of the kinds of information I want out there readily available and I wanted to make it easier for others like me to find.  So far I have written approximately 10 pages towards that.

All of this whilst sick with a chest infection, injured leg, ear infection and the extreme depression caused by the harassment I am getting from my neighbour, which is actually making me scared to go into my own back garden these days.

I am planning to start selling my artwork around the end of the year; there is a local opportunity for me to take up positions in the local art gallery and I am going to snap those up.  I won’t be ready until autumn.

I have also done four half done pieces of artwork this week, there are plans for 6 more, I am trying to do them fast, but they require a lot of layers and drying time so that can be frustrating!

I am also starting a junk journal for the first time.

Whilst I am updating you all, I may as well tell you about some of the books I have read this month.  I have read “Conversations with God” as a non-believer in mainstream religions; I found it refreshing, because to me, it proves all the instincts I had about God growing up are true and valid.  But I had all those ideas beaten out of me because my family can be quite radical about this sort of thing.

I have also read “The library of the dead by T.L Huchu” which I absolutely loved, it was about ghosts and it is a mystery, a sort of detective for the dead sort of supernatural thriller/fantasy.  I found some parts of the story very gory, but it was a fun read and I look forward to reading more from this series – as I think I heard it is a series now?

I read “The Spooks Apprentice” by Joseph Delaney, which I felt was not really suitable for children under the age of 14.  I found it too disturbing in some parts and my son and his entire classroom had this read to him during school lockdown online and most of the children were asking the teacher not to read it to them because of nightmares!  So there you go!  I enjoyed it, but I found it too quick paced.

I am currently reading two other books I got from the library, so I will update you all on those soon.  The Echo Wife by Sarah Gailey and Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor!

So this is a condensed down and short as possible update for you all, hope you all are well and I will hope to post again in a few days’ time.

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My week of writing 4 and updates

I have not had a good week regarding my immune system this week.  Everything has decided to play up again, my ears, my throat, ache in my bones, my cough is getting bad again and before you all start to panic, no it is not the corona virus!  Though I’m scared to go anywhere near a doctors surgery right now, despite a bad chest infection brewing. 

Talking of which I have had the news of 12 individuals I personally know dying of this damned disease this week!  One of which has left a family of 6 children under the age of 19 without a father, it is very sad.

Also recently my mother wrote me a letter trying to get back into contact with me again but failed to mention my uncle (one which raised me off and on a lot throughout my childhood) had also died of the corona virus just three weeks ago, after being admitting to hospital shortly after Christmas.  So that’s how much she cares about re-establishing contact with me where it actually matters; You see, people don’t matter to her, they never have – I mentioned in a previous post about how cold towards sentimentality she is with people and how people can be as easily discarded as items by her.  This proves it; even with her favourite sibling she is indifferent.  I don’t know how people can be that way?

Although I am very disappointed with my word count for the week, the whole fact I did anything at all is amazing, considering it has mostly been a bed bound week for me again. 

I have also had a brand new idea for a horror novel which I am excited about because I think it isn’t something that has been done before, but what will I know?  Anyway, the idea came at me whilst I was reading World War Z which is amazing really because the idea is not zombie based at all.

I am thinking about going into the planning stages for that book between now and April, because I am thinking about perhaps, health permitting, I may join NaNoWriMo.  I found out NaNoWriMo does an April and a July thing too, so I may do the April one this year, whilst this new idea is very fresh in my mind!  I am going to name the project “Bones” whenever I talk about it, so you know what I am on about from time to time. 

I have also decided against a YouTube channel because I have heard rumours than an average 10 minute video can take 7 hours of editing and I hate technology so I won’t enjoy that editing process at all.  Sorry for the disappointment guys!  On the bright-side, I may start posting pics on Instagram finally, well, soon, anyway. 

My word count has been very small this week.  It is as below…

Words towards blog posts           –             1334

Words towards novels                   –              6240

Words towards plans for novels –             647

Words towards poetry or songs –              79

Words towards essays                   –              0

Words towards other                     –              678

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Plotting vs planning & minimalism vs chaos

I am usually a plotter type writer and I do not like reading in first person and outside of poetry and my blog posts, I rarely write it.  Yet there is something going on in the throes of my imagination recently that I don’t quite understand.

The series I am working on here on my blog “Shadowlands” is not plotted; I have no idea what is going to happen from one week to the next in this story.  It is as much of a surprise to me as it is for you.  As soon as I have written each post, it is put here on the blog without redrafting – yes you are reading first drafts, I am sure you can tell? 

I am also astonished that I am writing this in first person; I usually hate reading stories that are written in first person.

I don’t know if this is a fantasy, a horror or a dark fantasy yet either.  I suspect horror.  But I can’t really say, for I do not know.

I don’t think about the series until I am ready to write more.  I am doing this to see if I can become a Pantzer – if I can and if this series turns out to become good and popular, I may try to pants my way through other stories in the future.

I have no idea what started this, but I have learned to live by impulse regarding all creative matters recently and not to try and make everything perfect like I usually do.  It doesn’t have to be perfect if you are having fun and you are creating something.  So far, it is a good rule to live by in my opinion.  I have started doing things in art, journaling and writing that I have never done before because I felt that there was a certain system and order you had to do things – systems and organisation are innovation killers.

I used to think it would be lovely to pour coffee over a crumpled piece of paper and stick it in a journal purely for aesthetic reasons with a few pretty buttons, ribbons and cut out vintage faeries – but then I thought, HOARDER ALERT!  Who’d think that was artistic?  But I recently discovering a whole host of people on YouTube who are junk journal creators and they are selling those very ideas I often secretly coveted for myself over the years.  I was surprised that most of my unique but ignored ideas were actually a cultural thing in certain bohemian creative circles and I then I became sad as I realised how much fun I have been missing out on in life.

I was raised by a scrupulous mother.  White walls, beige carpets, glass tables, clinical house stinking of bleach and spring cleaning happened monthly!  No room for cutting and pasting pretty things into makeshift little booklets and journals.  No room for saving buttons off the shirt you are throwing out and keeping cinema tickets as memorabilia, that is dirty hoarding, it’s not creative, it’s not nice and it is not art!  This is what I was raised to believe, this is what was brainwashed into my mind and I often dreamt of freedom.  I often dreamt of keeping all the pretty things, because most things I had growing up were often thrown away within less than a year – nothing lasted.  My mother was often proud of her “throw away” cultural ideologies.  She even bragged that she wasn’t the sentimental type too – often throwing away family photos of people who she had recently disowned and never saving anything just because of emotional value.

She tried to make me like her.  For a time it nearly worked, until I literally had the second nervous breakdown I ever had in my whole life.  She was making my home like hers, though a little more dowdy because she knew I liked natural colours.  So magnolia walls with brown carpets and curtains, she winced at my liking for oak furniture (the most sensible normal choice she could accept) and I hated it.

I felt my home was cold and uninviting and very old fashioned, it never represented my personality at all.  Not the true me anyway.

As soon as I decided I couldn’t take contact with her anymore, my house dramatically changed and it is slowly becoming a warm, fun and cosy place for me.

My living room side walls are green with wallpaper on the chimney wall that looks like trees from the Lorax.  My sofa cushions are a mix of all my favourite things, bees, marvel comics, quotes I love, kittens, rabbits and butterflies.  I have faeries and dragons lining the bookshelves as guards to the world of my imagination that are my favourite books. 

My window ledge is festooned with herbs and a lemon tree, which my mother would probably find dirty to have potted plants indoors like that.

It’s lovely and it is my home.

I know I am 39 on my next birthday, as things progress to how I want for my life, the more I am starting to believe that for me, life might really begin at forty as they say it does!

Let’s see!

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My week of writing 3

Words towards blog posts posted and scheduled – 1814

Words towards novels – 15418

Words towards plans for novels – 462

Words towards poetry or songs – 38

Words towards essays – 1674

Words towards other – 4670

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My week of writing 2

Words towards blog posts – 4930

Words towards novels – 12856

Words towards plans for novels – 3181

Words towards poetry or songs – 57

Words towards essays – 0

Words towards other – 886

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Reality is hitting home

Paul and I have agreed that I can’t write like how I used to anymore because I am just too tired and ill a lot lately, especially with sleeping problems occurring. 

So, it has been agreed to cut my usual word count down by a thousand words per day.  Making my word goals 2k a day, because I am struggling to get past 2500 words and I am finding myself in consistent writing debt of 400 to 1350 words on a bad day. 

Like today, I was meant to write no less than 4458 words before tomorrow, because yesterday I was lagging behind as my auto-immune condition has decided to step up its game.  So today I am even worse and needing to go to bed again at any minute (it is nearly 6pm) and I am only just at 2300 words today – so the debt tomorrow would be even greater. 

Before all this crappy ill-health stuff started to happen I would easily vomit out 3k to 10k words per day, depending on how much time I had spare to write.  I felt that I could force myself to fart out 3k a day as an average but I think I have to sit back and realise I am not as healthy as I used to be and I have to learn to manage my health and disabilities better, instead of literally flogging myself to death, just so I don’t – whatever… You know, right? 

I am exhausted emotionally and physically a lot of the time.  I think I have to reside myself to finally realising that I am never going to be how I used to be anymore and I should just learn to make do with what I can do.  Stop pushing myself as hard, especially as stress can make your health worse, I already have enough stress I can’t control, and I may as well cut out the bits that I can.

Not only this, but I am starting to resent my writing today, because it is taking me around three to five hours to do my goals and that meant that my time for other things, such as reading, playing games and just chilling with my family was getting less and less.  So I can’t start resenting work I love doing, because that is not good.  I need to always stay in love with my writing and art, since I found out I have fell in love with it again.  Writing should be a pleasure, not a bind.

I have just got to manage myself better around my illness, better than I have been doing.  I have to start being kinder to myself; as I have been a right bully to myself recently.

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My vampires love has rekindled ten fold!

My vampires have taken up a lot of my time this week; they have been pretty much neglected in the past seven years, only having me dib in at writing about them about once a month for half an hour on average – but I seem to be rediscovering my former passion for them.  I believe this rekindled passion for my vampires have come about because I have found a handful of author agents who are trying to revive the vampire craze with new fresh ideas and I feel that there may be hope for me yet!

A lot of my old vampire stuff has to be updated due to copyright theft from a family member who literally tore my heart to shreds when they sold my work behind my back for a few holidays and new extreme sport equipment!  You can’t trust even your own family regarding this matter but I won’t get into that here right now.  But I am in the process of gathering my old stuff for some legal poking around soon.

Meanwhile I have fresh ideas and new stories and new characters in the works – nothing will keep my love for my undead babies for too long.  I will always find a way.

I always suspected that relative from stealing my ideas from me – but it wasn’t proven entirely until I had a strange email from someone who asked me if I was related to such and such and I confirmed it and so… a new chapter in my life might be beginning.

Anyway – it was so exciting to find that there are some agents who have vampires on their MSWL (Manuscript wish lists).

So, I am aiming to produce my new work and get it off to one of these agents before the end of the year – I hope they still want it by then, but I won’t worry too much right now – it will get in the way of the work!

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WIP 19th February 2021

Gah!  I have struggled with a writers debt I caused yesterday by not completing my 3k words yesterday, so today I had to force myself to write 4193 words by the end of the day!  But I am having a really bad day with my health and a big immunity relapse!  I am in pain, I am tired, I managed to do some writing, but I have to stop now as I am too tired!

I have writers debt tomorrow of 4458 words… I can wake up earlier and do more; this is getting out of hand!

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Paul’s promise

At some point this year I have been promised by Paul that he will get me a new computer so I can work both upstairs and downstairs at ease.  Also this new computer will have a webcam and microphone so I can record videos to upload onto YouTube, I can’t wait!

I am struggling to decide what kind of YouTube video to have; because I have such varied interests and then I found out I can have more than one channel. 

I want to have a creative writing journey channel, which will have me reciting my own poetry and short stories.  I will also give writing advice on that channel.

The next channel will be regarding my love for self-sufficiency – I love gardening and making things from scratch, anything from homemade wool felt to jam and chutney making.

The third channel will be about my art and my art journey and art journals.

I can’t wait to get started, I should technically say that I will have 5 YouTube channels, because my son wants to have a gaming channel and I will be on some of those videos and his other channel will be based on his art or cooking journey too; because he can’t decide if he wants to be an artist or a chef just yet.

My son will also be seen on some of my videos too, because he often helps me with various projects.  It is pretty much a family thing.

It is not considered that I will get this new computer, mobile phone and YouTube channel for the spring as I initially thought – so it will be later on in the year, but definitely before Christmas 2021!  Paul has promised!

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Writers debt and credits

I have recently rekindled my love for writing, like I used to a few years back – I was losing it to be honest but now I think I have my mojo back!  I lost my love for writing back in 2017 after I burned myself out doing 50k towards NaNoWriMo by the 21st of November and ignored all other writing projects and art projects as I did so!

I read in a book somewhere a couple of weeks ago – forgot which one, it may have been a YouTube video now I come to think about it, that when you are a creator and you force yourself to work on one large project for a prolonged period of time, it can burn you out and make you resent creating in the future – I think that happened to me.  The way to ensure that never happens is to work harder for shorter periods of time or have more than one project on the go, or at least some other creative outlet such as painting or woodworking or even music.

During NaNoWriMo of 2017 I ignored everything else but that one main novel for the entire duration – the novel was a novel I had been ten years in planning!  After NaNoWriMo had finished, I hated the book and have never revised it since.

I didn’t draw, paint, write poetry, write anything new towards my blog other than WIP progresses and I didn’t practise any music, language learning or read any new books – just so I could focus on that one novel that I began to hate by November 17th.

To be honest, I have noticed this is a theme for a lot of writers who do that – they never want to write again sometimes after doing this and others can’t bring themselves to write that particular novel ever again or revise it – I am one of those.  But I am trying to get back into revising that novel, because it was a great idea and I loved it before that challenge and I really would love to have this published.  But I do feel that it will be hard in the first few days to revise.  I am planning to revise that book by the end of May.

I have a writing goal of 3k words per day, whether those words are towards a novel, towards the blog, towards an art journal or a poem – I don’t mind, I am just not committing myself to one project ever again like that.  I simply can’t!  I had to stop myself from doing it again the other day based on a suggestion an online friend gave me, but I just can’t do that again.

I am happily working on three novels at once, skipping between works whenever I feel myself getting lethargic on one, just so I get the word count I want by the end of the day.  Today for example, I am near the 4k words mark, seven times I have skipped between writing posts for my blog to schedule for later on in the week in between concentrating on just one of my vampire novels.  It is working so far.

I am also starting something new to spur me on to keeping to my own word count deadlines and that is doing something I call “Writers debt” and “writers credits”.  I make myself write 3k words per day, if I only did 2800 words today, then tomorrow I will have a writers debt and must aim for 3200 words before I finish tomorrow.  However, if tomorrow I write 4200 words, I am in credit by 1000 words the next day, so I don’t have to work as hard because I will only need to pump out 2000 words that day.

I feel it helps because it makes me accountable for my writing and it gets me used to potential publisher deadlines in the future!

Yesterday I was 965 words short of my daily goal, so today my goal has been 3965 words!  I am over that now and I will be in credit of approximately 300 words tomorrow!

Try it, it works great!

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