Posts Tagged ‘progress’

Let’s start with the slight panic.

The open mic event is coming along fast, the advert is out and the local community aware. Unfortunately, an emergency local meeting has been booked at the same time as our event.

Naturally, this has an impact on who can take part: some of the writing group might miss our own event!

My best plan is to move our event forward by one hour and hope this minimises the issue. However I have gone from frustrated to upset to sanguine and back round a few times over the weekend!

If all else fails I will keep in mind the immortal cover words from the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

Don’t Panic

Beyond that, it’s all progressing pretty nicely.  We’ve got a few performers lined up, the performance poetry is shaping up well and there is a new vigour in Creativity Corner. The writing group has been joined by a painter and we are going to open up Thursday nights for a selection of creative ventures – hopefully a dedicated space with different artistry will bring us all some new inspiration.

In the meantime I am having dragons painted on my shoes, which will keep me happy for months!

There is still no time for reading properly, although I gave myself Saturday night off anything in particular so I could watch Doctor Who. It was raining and miserable outside and I needed some escapism, so I went right back to the start of the reboot.

Sometimes you just need to switch off thinking, stop thinking about rhyme schemes, and watch a wooden box fly through space…

I am back to work now though.  From now until we go away for the family wedding I will be trying to finish my current work in progress; when I get back I have 3 days to choose my pieces.

I am amazingly confident I will have a good selection to share!

Happy writing,



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This week I was intending to focus on setting, which I have, to a degree. I’ve thought about spaces, locations, elemental/environmental factors, and I was getting on with that relatively well.

But today is snowed, and although I have weather in my notes it made me think I have been a little too prescriptive.

I have the weather as an environmental factor either enclosing a space or impacting on the experience of an external setting.  Standing outside in the snow I realised it is more than that – it is about safety, or danger, comfort or discomfort, enclosing people in the setting of their own bodies, seeing nothing but their own breath or blinding them with brightness.

I will focus now on the wider experiences of setting and how it impacts on the physical body and the emotional and mental experience.  That will be the task for the next week.

Meanwhile, I have also found myself doing something I haven’t done for a long time: writing down ad hoc conversations between as-yet undefined characters.  It’s those weird little conversations that run through your head when you are inspired by something you see; those little moments that somehow spread out into an entire scene in your head.  I am keeping records of them so I can use them once I have finished my work on setting.  Maybe if I have enough, I will be able to link them like spiderwebs and they will make a whole story!

So although I missed an element I am glad to have the opportunity to continue working on it.  I’m pleased I have given myself time, as well – it’s taken me back to the basics of writing, and thinking more deeply about what to put on my page.  I feel like I am working at my craft, not just throwing ideas on a page and seeing what sticks.  It’s a good feeling 🙂

I hope your new year is going well too!

Happy writing,




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The last two weeks have been quite productive: I’ve finished reading the guide to the paranormal book (well, the relevant parts anyway!), I’ve sent my manuscript to a writing contest, I’ve done some multi-purpose research (I’m researching for a quiz but have been able to use the experience to weave an idea into my story), and I’ve started my next stage of research.

All in all, I’m ready to start planning out the next novel!

I’m keeping an open mind about how the idea will progress, but I’m going to be strict about cutting superfluous themes and scenes this time – any ideas I have that don’t fit will be recorded somewhere else for future use or reference only.

I’m keen to get going, but I’m trying to be really methodical and make sure I don’t make the mistakes I did on the woods book – which is now calling out for me to work on it even though I’m not sure what the fix will be yet!

The next step will be a short synopsis of the whole thing, of about a page, and from there I can identify other areas I need to research, as well as start planning how I get from the beginning to the end…

In other news – We’ve reached books 21 and 22 in the 100 books list.  Book 21 was Middlemarch, by George Eliot which I have read and actually enjoyed a lot; I found it much more interesting than some of the contemporaneous books.  I wanted to read it after seeing the BBC adaption with Rufus Sewell – can’t think why he drew me in!

Book 22 is The Way We Live Now, by Anthony Trollope which I haven’t read but I have put on my reading list – hopefully I’ll get to him in the course of the reading challenge!

And finally – I read a very interesting, and thought-provoking, article this week about earnings for self-publishers and the relationship between publishers and writers.  I haven’t analysed the original data yet – although I’m very grateful that data has been provided so freely!  Until I do I don’t know how easy it is to extrapolate  from it in a wider sense, because the source of the data is Amazon and therefore already has an in-built skew towards e-books, but it makes a lot of sense to me that earnings % is higher per unit for self-published books.  My own experience of looking at publishers shows that with all the various steps (from me through an agent through a publisher through a physical manufacture through to the point of sale) each one diminishes the end payment I will receive. The other point to consider here is that many e-books from traditional publishers are similar or the same in price to a physical version whereas a lot of self-published are cheaper than a physical book, which (to me) seems unreasonable.

A higher earnings % doesn’t mean higher earnings though, and it doesn’t mean all self-publishing will lead to a living wage!  But most writers know that writing isn’t a big earner for the most part, and there is a debate to be had about what is a reasonable amount to make, 5 wise, per book.

This debate will continue, and there will be more data analysed in the future; if you’re considering what way to go with your own book this issue is an important factor to consider.

I’ll leave it there for today – it’s been a busy day and I’m exhausted!

Happy writing,



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