Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Brighter Thoughts

I'm, pleased to say my mood has lifted since my last post. My equilibrium has been restored and I am a happier writer for it. I went to my writing group last weekend and they have set me straight and I seem to have my confidence back. I shall have some time to write - I hope - over the next 6 weeks as I shall be off in sunny Australia visiting family. My trusty laptop will be by my side and if I can drag myself out of the sun and into writing mode I shall power on with the novel. Until next time!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Editing Nerves & Dark Thoughts

Oh how quickly it all changes. I'm still ploughing through the editing but my confidence seems to have taken a knock. I have had the first 10,000 words read by a couple of trusty readers - and their feedback differed rather radically! This has shaken me as I know don't know what to do. I'm waiting for my gut instinct to kick back in and tell me but it's having a hiatus. I thought I had finished and polished the first 10,000 but now I'm not so sure.

I keep telling myself every writer feels this way but it's not keeping the dark thoughts at bay. I shall plough on through the rest and just let my thoughts about the opening chapters stew somewhere in my subconcious. Hopefully it will spit back some fire at some point and I can decide what to do. I hate this feeling!!!

Did I really say I loved the editing process the other day? I must have been on a high imagining my book as R&J read of the summer!!! Today I can only imagine a pile of rejection letters splatting onto the hall mat. I should have put a warning at the top of this to say - don't read this if you need cheering up!!!!!

Monday, November 05, 2007

quick word

I feel a teeny bit scared of blogging again after my extended break. But I felt that I wanted to break the drought. My novel currently stands at 314 pages and I am up to page 110 of editing the final draft. Ir's coming along at a good pace.

In fact for the first time in my writing life I am unable to get through a day (except sunday which is all about the weekend papers, drinking coffee and laying around in my pyjamas) without writing.

I even went and bought a new pink notebook the other day as the ideas for my next novel keep biting me.

This is all very exciting - I love the writing process - at the moment!!!

Thank you rowan, zinnia & leigh for leaving me words of support in your comments - they really help.

05 November 2007 16:14

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Blog Rest

I'm trying to finish editing my novel before xmas and something has to give with regards to time - since the family need attention and I have to turn up for paid work it has to be the blogging. I really love having a blog but I need to crack on with my editing or it will never be finished. I'll be Arnie says.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sunday Morning

Anyone who knows me well understands that I am not a morning person - perhaps I'm still rebelling against my 6am birth. It's just after 0900 on Sunday morning and this is usually my lie in day but not this morning. I think it was the thought of fresh fruit bread waiting to be toasted and spread with strawberry jam that drove me out of bed and done to the kitchen. It was heavenly!

I'm now watching a woman feeding the two swans and many ducks that reside on the little stretch of water behind our house. Next to early mornings birds are the other 'thing' that worry me. I think that one comes from being left in the middle of Trafalgar square at the age of 2 strapped into my pushchair while my Mother stepped back to take the photo. Sheer terror was definitely the look on my face.

The swans and ducks look very satisfied out there and if I was more confident around creatures who flap I would be willing to offer them some of my fruit bread. But as they say 'like that's ever gonna happen!'

I think it might be time for a mid morning nap.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Busy, Busy, busy...

I'm going to take a blog break for the next 10 days or so due to: and more work
Eldest going off to start University
Wee trip to the glorious highlands of Scotland

Back soon!

Friday, September 07, 2007

Taking a Break

I'm having a blog break for the next week. Deadlines and work. I'm going to see a new dance production in London on the weekend which I'm really looking forward to. It's called 'Satisfaction' and it's based around the music of the Rolling Stones. I'm not a Stones fan but I love contemporary dance so going to have a culture hit. I love going up to London - it always 'wakes' me up and fills me with a buzzy energy. Big cities do that for me. And I love staying in hotels - which I may have mentioned a few million times before! I'm off to dream off fluffy white towels, turned down beds and breakfast made by someone else. That's what I call bliss.
Have a good week! Happy writing!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Go Slow

I'm mimicking the tube strike in London and having a go slow day. I woke up this morning and thought about all the things I had to do today and for the next few days - the list was overwhelming. I got out of bed and shuffled down to the kitchen, put the kettle on and made the first coffee. I stood drinking it as I looked out at the grey sky and felt the cool, Autumnal air drifting through the kitchen window. Then my great idea came to me - I was going to do everything at my own pace today and since I was feeling sluggish and relaxed - I was going to take it easy. I realise that every single day - including most Sunday's - there is always something on the 'to do' list. I guess that is part of the flow of writing and living.

I quite like a cracking pace most of the time but every now and again my body rhythms reset themselves and tell me to slow down - they also tell me it's time for a holiday! So far this morning I think I have been just as productive as usual - if not more so - yet I feel very calm - almost serene. I'm just going to plod through the day and quietly go about my business.
I'm off into the garden to rake leaves!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Petit Posting

I have just spent a delicious afternoon indulging in retail therapy with my husband - who loves shopping just as much as I do. Sometimes I have to jump up and down and cry 'it's my turn now' you have to look at me in these jeans/shoes etc. He did very well today and I did OK. There was a fab French market up on the sea front and I dropped an easy £40 in an hour - came home laden with bread, cheese, strawberries, tartes, 2 fancy watches (for a tener!!) and a bag. Oh and just to top it off I had a lovely flirt with a cute Frenchman - The conversation went like zis:

I said 'Bonjour' in my best schoolgirl English - he said 'Oh are you french?' I wanted to roar with laughter but didn't - how mature am I!!!!! Instead I said 'No, I'm Australian.' He said 'Oh you are a long way from 'om.' He batted his eyelashes at me (much more impressive than mine!!!) I batted mine back and we parted with 'Au Revoir.' I know it wasn't the most amazing conversation ever to have occurred with a stranger but sooooo good for the soul - a bit of harmless flirting on a sunny afternoon with a man in possession of a sexy accent.

Off now to indulge in olive bread, brie and a glass of chilled pinot grigio!!!
Ahhhh I love Sunday Afternoons!!!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Trying to be good

My lovely pots are still blooming!

I'm trying to be good today and not fritter time away by blogging or reading blogs but it is so dam addictive reading other writer's blogs. They all have such a unique take on the craft, the process and the 'hanging in there no matter what.' I like to hear the same encouraging words about the writing process from lots of different 'voices' because we all phrase it in different ways and sometimes you can hear the same piece of advice 5 times and yet it only sinks in from one person. It's great when you make that connection and finally you get it.

I was feeling very grumpy yesterday and quite discouraged about my ability to get my second draft completed - I feel heaps happier today - partly due to my lovely husband who is always supportive and partly due to the natural rhythm of life where 'this too shall come to pass' applies - in my case my glum mood. I also feel cheered by reading some writer's blogs to start this sunny day. So, now I'm off to write!!!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Grumpy Tuesday

I just had to post this pic of my veggie lasagne!!! I've made it twice now in the past week and since it is the first new recipe I have attempted to cook for about 5years I am very excited!!!!
Our jolly milkman woke me at 6am this morning as he was laughing and bantering with some noisy neighbour - how could they be laughing at 6am???? I'm not a morning person so this is a mystery to me - I don't really start functioning properly until about 10am. Though I do make a good show of being awake before then - it is all an act!!! I eventually fell back to sleep and into such a deep sleep (the kind where you feel like you are emerging from the bottom of a mud pit when you do wake up) that the alarm ringing at 7:30 was a hideous shock. I now feel out of sorts and then my wireless connection decided to be stubborn and won't work so I am hooked up to my 'old fashioned' modem which means I am bound to sit at my desk rather than sprawl on a sofa!!

I'm also having a little writer's worry than I will never manage to finish the next draft of my novel - Oh dear - I think I'll need my emotional crutch today - chocolate and I was trying to be so good and resist temptation. Today I am weak. Luckily there are a few choccy morsels in the fridge left over form the weekend. I shall have a nibble then talk myself back into a cheery mood. I feel better already for just writing the above - think I've exorcised some of the grumpiness!!!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Fantasy writing spot

This is where I'd like to be today! Just me, my laptop and a chilled glass of champagne - I'd do a bit of writing then I'd take a nap - Bliss!!! I'm really tired today after sitting up in bed until 1:15am reading a Michael Crichton thriller - Next. It has quite a lot of biomedical jargon in it and a gazillion characters but I'm hanging in there as the story has me hooked. I was really tired as well after going to the gym and doing the exercise class from hell. I should have known I was in trouble when the instructor began talking about 'military style' exercises. Now I know why I never ran away to join the army - they have to eat rations and DO killer exercises!!!
No, give me the setting above any day and I'd be quite happy. Shallow I know - but it's Friday and it's been a long week! Looking forward to the bank holiday weekend - I plan to spend a lot of it either in bed, on the sofa or on a sunbed if the predicated heat and sunshine comes through - Bliss!!!!!
And there will be champagne - for no reason - other than pure enjoyment. AAhhhh.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

In the moment

I read a quote in the weekend papers that resonated with me. I don't remember who it was (obviosuly my champagne consumption on sat night is haunting me!!!!) It was by a woman who was born in one country and now lived between two others and she said that she worked out a long time ago that she couldn't wish she was in one place when she was in the other - otherwise she would go mad.

I really liked that. Simple but powerful. I have a life that is split between the UK and Australia and sometimes when I think about my life back in OZ and the people there I love and miss I do feel a kind of madness descend and an overwhelming feeling that says I 'can't believe I'm not there right now.' But I am a great follower of 'living in the moment' and this does the trick for me 90% of the time. I'd love a magic wand or a tardis so I could live equally between both but all I have at the moment - which is quite a lot - is the feeling that I am content living in the moment - whether that means looking out at the lush South Downs on this bleak summers day or living a nomadic existence out of a suitcase when I'm back in Oz visiting family and friends.

I've realised that as you go through life and meet people that you form lasting friendships with - it is likely that no matter where you are - there is always someone that you'll be thinking about and missing. The upside of this is that I feel lucky to know and cherish a disparate group of people.
I'll never stop looking for that magic wand though!!!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Saturday Night

When I was in my early twenties the idea of having nowhere to go on a Saturday night was quite horrifying. Staying home alone when my flatmates were out at a party or away for the weekend was enough to force me to question whether or not I was a social pariah. It was a bit Bridget Jones on occasion - just me - a toasted tuna sandwich (I couldn't cook at all back then), a bottle of whatever cheap wine my meagre student income would allow and dire Saturday night TV.

These days the idea of having a Saturday night home alone is cause for great excitement. I get in my pyjamas early - have a bottle of bubbly chilling, a couple of good DVDs (by my standards - which is why I wait until I'm home alone to watch them!), large slab of chocolate and the take away menu at the ready. Utter Bliss!

BUT - there is still a thrill of excitement connected with socialising on a Saturday night. For a start you usually don't have to get up early the next morning and there is often more time to ponder what to wear and have a leisurely time getting ready. On Saturday night we did the loveliest kind of socialising. We went to a friends house a couple of hours drive away - stayed the night in their lovely guest room, sat nattering for several hours with tasty snacks and bubbly then the took us out to dinner at their local Indian, then we returned for further drinks, laughter and chatter.

It was a fantastic night and if I had known all those years ago when I sat home alone on a Saturday night that there were nights such as this one ahead of me, I would have relished my solitude and perhaps even done something useful with the time - such as study!!!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Utopia no more

Well this is the tale of my vege lasagne I cooked last night. First of all our friends arrived for dinner but the doorbell wasn't working so they were standing outside knocking and pushing the doorbell to no avail - we didn't hear a thing. They had to ring us to come and let them in. So we're all settled in the sun room having a drink and nibbles and I had the lasagne in the oven doing it's 40min cooking. The timer goes off and I swan into the kitchen after announcing that I would be serving in 10mins. Smug chef that I was I had made the salad and side dishes earlier!!!! I go to the oven and the first thing I notice when I open the door is lack of heat - Hmmmm - and the lasagne looks the same as it did when I put it on.

I had neglected to turn the gas up to 6 and it remained on preheat. Back to the guests feeling less smug with another bottle of wine in hand. Of course they had announced on arrival that they were starving as they had been gardening all day and forgot to have lunch!!! I open more nibbles and endure the good hearted (and deserved!!) ribbing. Finally the bell pings again and this time the lasagne looks and smells delicious - Wow I was so impressed. And the best bit - it tasted yummy and everyone had seconds.

All in all a fun evening and I feel proud of myself for attempting to cook a new dish. I was a borderline failure at school in domestic science - sometimes it shows - and sometimes I manage to get away with it!!!!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Domestic Utopia Part Two

Feeling smug today as our bedroom is now looking rather fab after my Herculean cleaning and clearing effort yesterday - didn't quite make it to my decluttering the wardrobe but feeling good anyway. I also did something I never do this morning - I went to the supermarket early and did the shopping before starting work for the day!!!! We have friends coming for dinner and I am going to cook a dish I have never made before - risky I know - as usually I would do a trial on family and check for unhealthy reactions - BUT - it's only vegetable lasagne - what could go wrong????? Hmmm.

We're on a high here in our household - A level results are in and our eldest got 2 As and a B - I currently have her anchored to the dinning table as I fear she will float away with happiness!!! I might have to join her. Her place at the uni of her choice is confirmed and I think her younger brother is in measuring up her bedroom in his anticipated move into the the 'big' bedroom when she leaves in a few weeks time for the spartan world of student accommodation!

I now have a few hours to myself so shall stop blogging and get writing. Oh, almost forgot to mention the sun is shinning - this day could be no better!!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Domestic Utopia

My brief stay in a lovely, minimalist hotel on the weekend has given me a nasty dose of domestic envy. It's not that I don't love our home - I do - it's just that at the moment we seem to be struggling to keep it tidy and complete all those jobs we started. My idea of domestic utopia is where you can open any cupboard and know exactly what's in it - and when you need to put something away again it has a dedicated space and I don't mean the sort that needs you to push it in with your foot and slam the door quickly before it all falls out.

I'm not sure how much time I waste looking for things in our place, probably at least the equivalent of writing a chapter a week. Our bedroom currently looks like someone returned from a tour of duty and tipped their kit bag upside down on the floor and then riffled through the contents, spreading them randomly about the room. If I want an item of clothing out of my wardrobe I simply scavenge at the bottom of it knowing I stand a better chance of finding it there rather than hanging up. My wardrobe utopia? I open the door and find exactly 12 items hanging up, they are all clean, ironed and interchangeable. There are no odd coloured items that I bought on impulse one day when I was feeling bold. No, 80% of the clothes are black and the rest add a splash of colour that I can cope with.

My study conforms to my idea of domestic utopia for the most part and I love it. Today's task is to tackle the bedroom. The weather is fowl, house is empty and I have nowhere to be. That seems to equal a day dedicated to creating domestic utopia. I can't even think about writing whilst I have this chaos around me. I need to clear the physical decks around me and then, just maybe I can have a few hours to write tonight when I have the house to myself once again. That would be a treat - tidy bedroom and some writing time.

Oh and as a reward I have a massage booked for the end of the day. I shall feel guilty if I go and enjoy it without having earned it. I'm off to hunt in the kitchen cupboard for the Mr Sheen and several garbage bags. I feel in the mood to scrub and cull.

Monday, August 13, 2007

I Love hotels!!

Oh I love hotels - someone else to load the dishwasher, make the bed, do the cooking and make me cappuccinos on demand - Bliss!!! I have decided that I am really meant to be leading a different life - one where someone else permanently has all the above responsibilities and I just swan around in a flowing caftan and turban snapping my fingers!! Yep and then I woke up and remembered this was just for one night. We had a mid school holiday treat and stayed with the kids in a lovely hotel near Blue Water shopping centre (huge mall for those who don't know it - in Kent) and spent the day shopping and eating and then went to see the new Harry Potter movie in the evening - in a cinema with sofas - that was the best bit!!! We all had our feet up and disappeared into HP world for a delicious couple of hours.

We were only at the hotel for about 18hrs but made use of the pool, gym. coffee shop, bar and restaurant. On the Sunday morning the active family members (everyone but me!!!) got up early and went for a swim whilst I lay in bed wrapped in the hotel fluffy robe, with a face pack on doing some writing with lovely classical music in the background - bliss!!!! We then feasted on a fantastic treat of a breakfast before hitting the shops. Could I have been any happier???? Definitely not! I'm trying to stave off the reality of Monday but its forcing its way in. Ah well - caftan and turban back into the wardrobe until the next escape.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Friday Already

This has been a mad and crazy week at the paid job and I have not had a chance to write or work on my editing. I have sat morning to myself and shall hide away and continue reading my first draft. It is funny how you start to notice your own mannerisms in your writing - some of them good and some of them just plain annoying. I'm trying to banish certain bits of 'me' from my writing. I know it is inevitable that aspects of me will appear and I think it is tricky trying to analyse which bits are the unique elements that you need to keep and which bits you need to bin. It can be a it cringy hearing yourself on the page. Perhaps I'm just not experienced enough yet at reading my own work. I plough on - strangely enjoying the experience.

Off with the family to see the Harry Potter movie on the weekend in a cinema that has sofas!!!! We're all very excited.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Gorgeous Day

The sun is shinning here on the coast and I'm in my shorts!!! Very exciting - The Aussie in my just has to be outside on a day like this so we're off to buy a new sun umbrella for the patio then I'm going to lie on a sunbed to finish Souvenir - I'm totally hooked on it and need to know where it's all heading. I shall try and do some writing later when the sun sets.

Still fighting the anxiety of being close to submitting to agents - it's almost too scary to contemplate - because I know that once I open that door I'm laying myself bare. There is something safe in keeping your writing close and something very scary about venturing into the 'business' side of it. Maybe I'm just feeling this acutely because I'm not quite ready to submit. Perhaps I'll feel bolder when I can sit back and say 'OK' it's time for the jiffy bag. Who knows?

I'm beginning to wish I'd paid more attention to science and maths at school and had a job that deals with black and white, right or wrong...too many variables in fiction but I know that's what makes it exciting. And I'm sure that science is also plagued with 'if I go down this path...etc etc.'

Ah well for now it's off into the Sunshine!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

All in the timing

I had an idea for my next novel quite a long time ago and had begun making notes and was getting quite excited about starting it. Then I was watching a movie on the weekend that had a scene shot in a place that reminded me of a house I used to live in. This led me to thinking about that house and the life I led whilst there and the people who were in my life - some of whom still are and a few I haven't seen for years. That night when I went to bed I woke up about 3am with an idea for a story. I scribbled it down (for once I actually forced myself to turn on the light and use my notebook!!!) and when I woke up the next morning and read it back a novel idea clicked into place. This is going to be my next one. I can't believe that only two years ago I had never even thought of writing a novel. Even though I've always written I just never considered the novel as a form for me. Now I have a completed first draft and ideas for two further books - how did that happen?????

Anyway I have a question I'm grappling with at the moment as I read through and make notes on my first draft (up to page 169 of 297) - When do I really start on the next one? I'm not sure on this. Will I get myself tied up in knots if I make a start on a fresh story whilst redrafting my current one? Is it really just up to me to find a process that works for my style? Should I wait until I've sent 'Support Act' out to Agents and then get cracking on the new one?

I can't quite believe I'm even thinking about this - amazing!!!! Well it's back to work for the afternoon with the red pen.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Going slow

I'm doing a lot of worrying at the moment interspersed with enthusiastic bursts. Reading and rewriting 'Support Act' is exciting and scary. I'm just trying to be methodical and going slow. I'm trying to hang on to a 'work' ethic of getting the job done rather than going off into mad writer headspace where the critic goes beserk and hurls insults freely that are of no use to me. It's a juggling act. Something else is emerging for me and that's worrying about time for writing. I think it's time for a lifestyle shake up as I really want to get going on the next novel idea. I never thought I'd be saying that.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Today is the day

I've just got 2 new writing books through the post this morning - Self Editing for Writers by Renni Browne & Dave King plus The 38 most common fiction writing mistakes. I'm hoping they wil be my guides (along with the rumbling inner critic who's itching to get at my first draft) as I start proof reading as soon as I finish writing this and hanging out the washing and...No - no chores will be done today. I have the house to myself for several hours, a strong pot of coffee on the go, my maunuscript sitting nearby all clean and smooth and a stash of good pens. I'm nervous and excited. Tonight we're all off to see Die Hard 4 and have a meal out - that's my reward for a day of itense reading. I'm already worried about the number of times I've got 'She realised' in my novel and I'm not sure how to tackle that one. Hopefully a tactic will come to me.
Fingers crossed.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Shoe Hell

Unfortunately I am not one of life's lucky shoe shoppers so I usually end up with a cupboard full of shoes that are rarely worn yet wistfully gazed at. I have bought, cheap, expensive, 'on sale', schols, homey peds, Dr Martens, shoes with inbuilt massage devices, flatties, tiny heel, platform - you name it - I own it! But all to no avail. I always end up getting twitchy in my shoes and wishing I was wearing someone elses shoes that look really comfortable

There is just something about my feet. They're not huge but they are wide and I do have an instep that you require certified climbing gear to ascend. These features mean that finding a shoe that fits is a hassle. When I got married two years ago I was determined to wear a flashy, dream pair of shoes and I found them in LK Bennets in the exact colour to match my dress and on sale!!! Perfect.

When I got them home I pranced around in them for all of 30secs before realising that my slippery instep wasn't going to hold them in place. Luckily my mother had flown 13,000 miles from Oz just to be standing there at the exact moment to say 'I have an idea of how we can fix this.' She lovingly sewed white elastic onto my gorgeous scarlet satin shoes to hold them in place. It was a good look. Fortunately my dress trailed the floor so only the toes peeped out. There were only a handful of us who knew what I really had under my dress.

When I walked down the aisle to stand next to my husband to be - he lent over and whispered 'I love your shoes'. I made the smart choice never to reveal the white elastic to him. It is one of our marriage's best kept secrets.

The one thing in life guaranteed to cause me enormous anxiety is if I know I'm going out for the day and the night with no chance to change my shoes between activities. If I know I can get back to the car I'll throw a couple of spare pairs in just in case. I know this is bordering on madness but I can't help it.

I'm already fretting about having to spend 4 days working in London in September when I'll be standing for hours on end and flip flops are not an option. If I'm ever disgustingly rich after I've done all the good and ethical things with my money I'm going to find a shoemaker and have them make me the perfect pair of shoes.

At the back of my cupboard the other day I found 5 shoes without partners - they are all favourites from years gone by that I've been unable to throw out even when there is only half a pair left. Sad I know. But I am ever hopeful.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Back from Holiday!

Had a fantastic time on hols with my Aussie visitors. We did Stonehenge, Bath and Cheddar Gorge (yes it truly is the birthplace of the cheese!) in 5 days. It was an intensive, knackering and really fun break. I fell totally in love with Bath - there is such a great vibe to the place and I was really aware of all the different 'tribes' inhabiting the place. It was great to be in a pub at lunchtime and see people of all ages/styles in there - made it a fun place to people watch.

Our hotel was right in the centre of the city which made it very easy to get around though we were a bit alarmed to discover that our quiet hotel was next door to an underground nightclub which came to life between 11pm and 4am on the Saturday night. I was OK as I had earplugs and an eye mask but my fellow travellers were all bleary eyed at breakfast the next morning. I dutifully went to Boots and bought them all earplugs and eye masks - naturally the club didn't open on a Sunday!!!!!

We made it our aim to try as many of the pubs/restaurants as possible - I feel like I've put on a shocking amount of weight in a short space of time. It's back to the gym for me now our guests have gone and normal domestic services have resumed - which means no alcohol or chocolate from Tuesday to Friday and trying to get some sleep after sitting up late for many a night putting the world to right.

It's also back to my writing. My first draft of my novel 'Support Act' has lay dormant for over three weeks and I'm about to print it off and have my first read since finishing it. Scary and exciting!!!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Off on Holiday!

I'm off on holiday for a bit now - I have Aussies visitors so it's time to show them the sights - we have packed sunblock, raincoats, sunhats, umbrellas, swimmers...and coats!!!!

Must be a UK summer!!!!!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Does everyone run Errands?

My guilty, cheap and quick pleasure is to peak at the people magazine celebrity gossip site. What really fascinates me is the number of mega stars who are featured there supposedly papped whilst out 'running errands'. I'm a little baffled by this - on the way hand I think if I had squillions in the bank I'd be paying someone to run my errands. For example - last Tuesday I had a list of 'errands' to run in my lunch hour - I spent twenty minutes queuing in the bank to have a 40second transaction with the cashier, then I spent 10mins queuing for a coffee, another five queuing in Boots and another 10 queuing to get out of the multi storey car park. So my questions is WHY would you want to do all that of you could pay someone to do it for you?????

Then you read about stars who say they like to do errands because it keeps them 'grounded' Really???????? That is a worry - the day I chose to spent 20mins in a bank staring at the floor because the guy in front of me in the que seems a little unhinged and I'm avoiding eye contact - is the day I'll know I've really lost the plot!!!

What I'd like is for stars to 'fess' up and tell us mere mortals what it's really like to be pampered and mega rich and if it's so boring that you have to run 'errands' to get your kicks then WOW I'll swap with them for a few days.

I write this surrounded by piles of washing, ironing and some strange, teeny little black bugs that are nesting away in my study. It's chucking it down outside - my To Do list is screaming at me and all I want to do is watch something mindless on TV but it's 4:35 and I have several more hours of work to do - running 'errands' would be a holiday compared to what surrounds me here in the home!!!!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Wild old day

If it gets any windier here on the sunny south coast I'll start to worry about my fence again. Back in the winter we lost 2 massive panels of fencing that run between us and our neighbour and it cost a fortune to replace. We came home from work to discover that we 'shared' a garden and had also gained a dog! The neighbour's dog thought it was brilliant fun to have the run of around 200 feet of garden. The only one home at the time was our very pregnant neighbour who suddenly saw two huge panels of fence hurling towards her conservatory - luckily it didn't break the glass or cause early labor!

Ah well it is the kind of weather that is useless for tennis or drying washing (wind is good but it is now chucking it down with rain) but fabulous for thinking about the next steps after completing a first draft. I'm trying not to look at it this week but it is calling to me. I resist though - I want some distance. I'm not sure whether or not to start making notes for my next idea in the down time from novel number one. Having never been in this situation before I'm not sure if that would be a productive thing to do or if it would interfere with my 'pondering' novel number one. Hhhhmmmmm.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Winchester Writer's Conference

What an amazing weekend! The confr was fantastic - it was such a friendly place and so many novelists and agents on hand willing to dispense advice and feedback. I have come home with the embryo of a plan for how I can write more and do paid work less. I'm about to go to my day job and sit in a 2 hour meeting and I'm really worried that I shall just daydream through it and be thinking about the rewrites I need to be doing on my novel.

Going there knowing I had finished a first draft of my novel the day before was just the best feeling. I was able to put my hand up high in lots of workshops when we were asked 'who has finished their novel' - that was a brilliant feeling!!! I got some amazing feedback which has made me desperate to get back to it and begin the 2nd draft but I'm going to leave it for 2-3 weeks and not even peak at it just so I can have some distance. It's quite good that the next 2 weeks are really busy work wise so there will be no opportunity for peeking!!!!

Big sigh as I must now go into the non writing world - really difficult to do after 3 days immersed in writing - it was just wonderful knowing that everyone around you was involved in writing and I met some lovely people and chatted for ages just about writing!!! I can really recommend the experience to any other writer.

Very Happy yo be home to a proper shower though - sleeping in uni halls of residence brings back my undergraduate days - which are fun to reflect one - but I was baffled as to how I ever washed my hair properly back then as the showers were just a trickle - it was lovely to get home to a proper shower and my own bed!!!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

I Did It !!!!!

I can't believe I did it - I just finished a first draft of my first novel - I feel like I have RSI and I don't know whether to laugh, cry or scream. I haven't eaten properly for 2 days and I think I have bedsores from lying here typing. I also haven't left the house for 2 days so can't remember what fresh air feels like. I'm going straight out to buy a jiffy bag or box at staples and then off to Sainsbury's. I have a craving for Tuna, roasted vegetables and something chocolaty for dessert. My husband is due home from Scotland tonight so I feel I better make an effort and brush my hair or something!

Wow - feel like I have just run a marathon!!!!!!!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Slogging Away

I'm still determined to make the Daily Mail contest deadline. I'm off to the Winchester writer's confr on Thur evening so I need to get my novel in the post by then. I'm on 76,000 words and it will be around 82,000 when done. It's been a really strange process as some of the sections are on their second and third drafts whilst others are still first and about 4,000 words are unwritten!!! I know what is going to happen just have to get it down. It's been good to have this deadline to aim for though otherwise I think I might have hung around and taken ages to finish it. It has really sharpened me up and given me a focus. The exciting bit though will be coming back to it in a couple of weeks and really begin to finish it. I'm looking forward to that. Off to have a break now though as I'm cross eyed and in need of sustenance!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Odd Start to the Day

My Sunday started off in a strange manner. I woke up at 0630 - that in itself is odd enough as I am a night owl - but it was crippling stomach cramps that had disturned my dreams so I came down to the kitchen in search of drugs and a hot water bottle. I was standing at the kitchen sink getting a glass of water when a savage pain ripped through me and the next thing I knew I was waking up on the floor - I'd passed out and hit my head on a kitchen cupboard on the way down. It was really weird because I woke up on the floor smiling - feeling quite happy! Really freaky and then I realised I was on the floor with a bloody sore neck! Yelled out for the husband who came and rescued me.

I am now ensconced on the sofa still in my pyjamas 'looking after' a box of cadbury roses while the rest of the family have gone to the gym for some exercise and a late breakfast. One part if me is quite excited by the idea of having an excuse for lying here and watching a movie but I couldn't decide which one to watch so shall write for a bit instead and get the word count moving. I did have some good ideas after my little blackout and even wrote them down - well I haven't read them back yet but they seemed pretty good at the time!!!!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Phew and Frangapanis

Finally managed to list all the novel racers on a side bar. Very proud of myself. I almost feel like I have a proper 'grown up' blog now! I had to post this gorgeous photo of frangapanis - my favourite flower on the whole planet. They're common in Oz and my mission is to try and grow them here in my garden on the south coast of England. This is quite a mission as I am also a novice gardener. They remind me so much of Oz that it would be quite wonderful to have them in my garden - the smell would transport me back to Sydney and it would be great to have them near by when homesickness strikes. Maybe one day I'll be posting a pic of my own frangapanis!!!

I mentioned that I had done a time management course last week and said I would post a few points from it. I had a couple of specific objectives for doing the course - one was to learn how to be more efficient with 'stuff' mainly paperwork - how to know what to file, what to bin and how to manage this process better so that I didn't find myself taking a week once a year to clear out the 'clutter' in my study. My other main objective was to learn some techniques for deciding what to do when and how to be ruthless with my time. You know when you have 8 things on your To Do list for the day and at the end of the day you still have 6 left and you have no idea where all the time went. I wanted to learn how to manage this problem.

There was quite a lot talked about on the day and some good books were recommended. One I particularly liked I ended up buying at Victoria station on the way home - I took it as an omen that there was only one copy left in the shop! I had read the first 70 pages on the 90 minute journey home. It is 'Getting Things Done' by David Allen. I'm currently trying a technique of his which helps you how to decide what to do from your 'Action/To Do' list with what you have available. His model is as follows:

1. Context - What do you need to actually undertake a particular action - for example returning a phone call means you need to have a phone to hand. If you don't then this is obviously not the time to be returning phone calls.

2. Time Available - If you only have 10mins then you can eliminate anything on your list that would take longer than this.

3. Energy Available - What are your energy levels currently like? Both mental and ohysical - again this will help you to work out what items you could achieve at present.

4. Priority - You answer all the above - see what items are still in the running and then use your gut instinct - pick one thing to do and get on with it!!!

I've been using this and it's been quite amazing. I have got a lot more things done - because he's given me a logical model and a system to follow. I like to have rules! It's great to do a course like this and actually come away and put some stuff into practice and see results instantly. The 'paperwork' issue is a work in progress but I am hopeful of changing my wicked ways! I know the points above are common sense but I find that sometimes I forget how to be efficient and I seem to forget it when I really, really need to be so.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I can do it...

This is a quickie to say I am slowly adding all the novel racers to a sidebar. I'm doing it manually so it's taking a while but I can't figure out how to do it the smart way so shall have to do it the slow way - so bear with me -I will get you all on there!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Getting there

Just a quickie post to say I'm so excited my word count is moving - it's a bit slow for my liking at the moment but at least it is moving and this is giving me energy to keep going. I'm off to London on thur to do an intenseive one day time managament course whihc I'm really looking forward to. I'm hoping it will give me some tricks and tips on how to get the most out of my day and create more time for writing! They just better not tell me to stop blogging or reading blogs - I couldn't do that - reading other writer's blogs and finding supportive comments on mine really keeps me going. I've also just received my copy of Wanna be a writer? which is full of really practical suggestions for finding time to write and so much more. Really loving it. Off to the gym to help keep 'writer's bum' from spreading any further!!!!!

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Feeling Grounded

I've started to read my novel from the beginning which I haven't done before and it's really helping me to get the final 15,000 words written. It's quite a bizarre process reading your own story. Sometimes I disappear into the story and then I get jolted out of it by sections that don't work. It's quite a challenge to work out why the bits that work - do so - and then try to use that information to inform how you 'fix' the bits that need fixing. Onwards!

Saturday, June 02, 2007


Finally my word count has moved on. I've had a bit of a writing epiphany (sounds very grand - really means I saw how complacent I'd been!!!!)and seem to have found focus again. My aim now is to keep it. I started my writing session today by reading from the start of my novel as I felt I'd lost touch with it. It was a really good thing to do because I haven't read a lot of this stuff for several months. It has really gotten me back into the flow of it and the aim now is to finish it - quickly!!!

Friday, May 25, 2007

What day is it?

I'm trying to work out how it got to be Friday. This past few weeks - well the whole month really has gone by in a blur. I can't say I've enjoyed it as I constantly feel like I'm several steps behind where I need to be. I went for a massage on wed to the best masseuse in the whole world and I don;t exaggerate!!!! Emma has the hands of God as I imagne them to be. She offers up an amazing pounding that frees up knots and kinks but she also throws in a great spiritual element - this week is was tuning forks on my spine to free up energy and get my groove moving again!!!! I love it. It always takes a few days for everything to settle down so I think that by tomorrow I should feel the full effects. Because of my odd month I haven't written. Sometimes it really is bloody impossible to figure out where writing comes in a life that already has a full time job and a normal, full personal life. What is the role of writing in all this? Occassionally I think I have it figured out and I get a regualr routine going and then along comes a hectic month and it goes out the window and then I have to start all over again in a sense.

I've booked to go to the Winchester writers conference next month so I'm using that as a starting point and some time for me to think about how writing fits into my life. I'm not expecting a miracle - I just feel I need to be a bit braver about writing. It is important to me and I need to figure out how to keep it as part of my daily life - otherwise I will never get my novel finished or the next one started or my current short story finished or my idea for a poem begun...There has to be a soloution that doesn't involve getting up at 5am!!!!!!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Totally Knackered

I've just had one of those weeks that go by in a blur and the only way you know you're going to make it through is by being super organised and keeping a close eye on what day of the week it is so you can make sure you're in the right place. I haven't written a singly word. I am so relieved that I made it through it and got all the work stuff done that I had too. But now I am shattered - I shall go to bed very, very early tonight. To add pressure to an already hectic week the tooth that the dentist filled last Monday has been aching and has required the popping of painkillers!!! I can't believe it - no fillings for 20 years then I have to have one because the dentist say so - not because I was in pain - and now the pain starts!!!! There is something seriously wrong with this scenario! I am going to be brave and ring him today - tooooooo depressing because I'll have to go back and sit in that chair with my blood pressure through the roof again - only this time I am in pain!!!!!!!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Dental Flashback

I started the week with an early morning visit to the dentist for a filling. I haven't had one for about 20 years and because I wore braces as a teenager and had regular trips to the dentist I have a bit of a phobia about it. I sat there in their waiting room this morning with my heart pounding telling myself not to be such a ninny. I thought how ironic it would be if I dropped dead from stress in the pale green waiting room as classic FM attempted but failed to soothe me. My dentist is a very nice man with a very modern surgery so I should have been reassured. Naturally I had to confess to him that I was anxious and then I apologised for being anxious because he said that he gets upset when people tell him they are anxious. I'm sure I read once that dentists have a high rate of suicide or depression or maybe both. Other than being a plumber I can think of no worse occupation than being a dentist. I have three family members who are dentists and so far they seem fine. Well the filling went well - there was no pain but I just couldn't stop my heart from pounding and actually I now feel exhausted and could hop into bed and fall asleep - but it is Monday morning and there is much work to be done - maybe I can sneak in an afternoon siesta!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

A Slump

My word count has not moved. I think it's the bleak weather but I'm having a week of...well actually I'm having a busy work week and no time for writing - that is the truth. I have watched a bit of TV in the evening when I could have been writing but my brain has been a bit fried. Oh excuses, excuses. Just one of those weeks! I'll live with it and get cracking again shortly! I've been writing long enough now to know that the slump happens from time to time and sometimes it's external forces and sometimes it's internal. I've also learnt 'that this too comes to pass'. I'll be back in the writing saddle shortly. Once upon a time I would have thought that a slump meant that I would never write again but I'm past that point now - thank goodness!!! Anyway I've had a major personal project this week that has taken up time - working out how to get some downloaded music onto my MP3 player - it didn't want to play ball but I was determined as my music needed refreshing so I did some research online and solved the problem. I was rather chuffed with myself and now I have new music which has inspired me to hit the gym - so that was a good thing!

Monday, May 07, 2007

Bleak Monday

Today was meant to be a gardening day but instead it's only 5pm and I'm in my pyjamas, tucked up on the sofa waiting for the central heating to kick in. Does this sound like spring? Not to me. Though the garden definitely believes it is and is in dire need of pruning and shaping - but not today. The wind and rain are lashing against the windows. It's definitely time for a glass of bubbly. It was meant to be the reward for a hard day's toil in the garden but what the hell - it's chilled now and just begging to be corked!

Monday, April 30, 2007

Where do you write?

I'm always interested to know where people like to write. I indulged myself earlier this year with a new ultra sleek and light laptop so I could lie in bed and write without being burdened by my weighty old beast of a laptop that was very heavy. I also like to lie on the sofa or curled up in an armchair. I don't really like sitting at my desk when I'm writing creatively - it's ok for business type stuff but I like to sprawl. I have a friend who has a disused prison cell for her writing studio. The cells are rented out cheaply to writers, artists etc. She says it is very quiet - eerily so - but she loves it. I dream of having a little summer house at the bottom of my garden where I can escape to and write. There is a space for it and every summer I eye the space up and say 'this year'. I've been out there today sizing the plot up and I'm thinking 'definitely this year.'

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Bubbles, Wine and a Good Read

I was planning to go to the gym today but dipped out at the last minute - just couldn't face it. I'm going to lie in the bath instead with a glass of wine and read a new collection of short stories I got today by Sarah Salway - Leading the Dance shall then catch up on a few episodes of ER - my indulgence on the side - whilst the house is empty. I have a big bar of chocolate chilling in the fridge to accompany this part of the evening. Hormonal moi???? Absolutely!!!! I did write about 600 word today so feel pleased about that and did tidy up all the clothes I have left strewn around the bedroom in the past few days as I've been going through the 'I have nothing to wear that '- A - fits me, B - fits the occasion, or C - fits the season. Definitely hormonal!!!!!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Streaky legs

Does anyone else ever have this problem I wonder? I have really pale skin that is a range of different tones depending on where you look. My face is simply pale with cheeks that go rosy - my legs are luminous white and my arms are blotchy white. Last summer I decided that I could stand it no longer and wanted to enjoy at least one summer with a tan - so off I went to have a spray tan - it was a thoroughly unglamorous experiecne being sprayed like a used car getting a second chance at life and the result was... well it was hilarious. I didn't leave the house for 36 hrs afterwards as I didn't want to scare small children. So I won't be doing that again. This summer I'm trying the Dove 'glow' gradual moisturising tan - the colour is lovely but I can't seem to get my legs the same colour all over. Can't decide if it's better to be white or blotchy brown?

Saturday, April 21, 2007


Now that my word count is zooming up I just want to be writing but here it is Saturday morning and I have about 3 hours of paid word that has to be done today and I don't want to do it!!! I feel a tantrum coming on and I know the longer I waste throwing negative thoughts at it the harder it will be just to get it done. I have thoughts of my story and characters erupting through my head yet I have to ignore them and do this very dry paperwork. Oh to have a generous benefactor!! Ha ha. Time to leave fantasy land behind and knuckle down - actually I feel better for having outed my terrible thoughts. Maybe I can get the work down in 2 hours and then have an hour to write. This needs chocolate and a steady supply of coffee - can I do it? I'm off to find out!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Blistering Session

Can there be anything that feels as good as a few hours of writing where you actually wrote rather than made copious cups of coffee, scrubbed the kitched floor, read writers blogs or tacked the pile of ironing that has sat there quite happily for months? Well there might be a couple of things that come close - but for sheer creative pleasure this is the most exhilarating feeling. My word count has hit 60,000 and I actually feel like I moved the story on. Maybe the antihistimine I washed down with a large latte gave me a boost. Whatever it was, I love it! Well I must now return to the real world as my hay fever has turned my eyes into mad, itchy, burning orbs - not pleasant! Looking at the computer screen has now become impossible. So much for the antihistimine. But despite my suffering I am deliriously happy!!!! And what I really want now is to go shopping and buy something new to wear. Maybe I'll just pop to Matalan or visit 'George' at Asda for something cheap that won't break the bank but still give me a little hit! Or maybe I'll just go to the pharmacy and see if they've got something stronger!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Finding love in Shanghai

My It Guru has been and my wireless network is functioning again!! Hooray. Since I discovered the joy of wireless over a year ago I have become addicted. I can lie in bed, on the sofa, in the garden and it is bliss. The past week has seen me confined to my desk and study again and I felt greatly restricted. I think better with my legs dangling over the side of the sofa in the sun room as I gaze at the garden - well I try not to gaze too much because then I see all the work that needs doing. Fortunately though the hedges which separate the lower and upper sections of the garden have gained quite a bit of height over the wet winter so they hide the mad borders beyond that need attention. I will get to them - I will!!!

This week my lovely husband and celebrated the 9th anniversary of our meeting in a little bar in downtown Shanghai. We had actually spent the whole evening at a traditional Chinese banquet where husband to be had stared at my back all evening and I had tried and pretty much failed to find something vegetarian on the many dishes that landed on our table. So we didn't actually get to meet properly until a group of us had decamped to a little club somewhere down a back alley. My Mother had warned me about doing things like this in foreign countries but there I was doing it and loving it.

We were trying to recall what time it was when we emerged to find dawn rising over the city. We had spent the night chatting, dancing, drinking too many Heineken's and giggling at the secret Karaoke rooms where the locals were going for it with great gusto. Several hours later my future husband revealed that he had a flight to catch back to London that afternoon and I was bound for Sydney the next day. And so began our long distance love affair. No prizes for guessing what my first novel is based on - that and Michael Jackson's fondness for a brand new toilet seat every time he uses the loo. The two are connected!!

The writing has been flowing this week though I feel like the word count is never going to rise beyond the 50,000 mark - I am impatient to hit the 60,000 mark. So I best get on with it!!!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Lost Post and a bit of string

I've had a week of internet problems - I still have them but am working around them using a bit of old string and some shiny cellophane paper - standing on my head also seems to be helping. I wrote a heartfelt post y'day and lost it. I feel deflated. I'm so glad it's not a full moon as well as Friday 13th. I'm having one of those days where I shouldn't be reading Mslexia or any other publication that is discussing writing - I am having a moment of lost perspective with regards to my writing. I think it is to do with my internet problems actually. I have spent many hours faffing around and have finally resorted to booking a call out with my very good but very expensive IT Guru. He can't come until Tuesday so I hope the bit of string and shiny paper hold out until then. It is the worst aspect of having your office based at home with no IT Guru within cooe distance. I am proud at least that I have bypassed the problem for now. I shall cheer up and be grateful that I have internet again. I shall go and visit some more writers blogs which will help me feel less isolated. Whatever did I do before the internet?

Saturday, April 07, 2007

OOps it's April

Well I have nudged my word count up slightly - beginning to think I am the slowest writer on the planet. I really want to have a first draft finished by the end of June and I can still make it - I just have to push on. The more I write of the latter part of the novel the more I sense how much work I will have to do back at the start - something to deal with on a second draft. I shall banish that niggle and forge on. But for the next few days I will be consuming easter eggs and gardening - what a fab combination!!! Happy Easter!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Midnight Ramblings

I had a very restless sleep last night and found myself up at 2am flicking through old books in the bookcase. I had done some writing on my novel at around midnight and at 2am thoughts of it were gushing around in my head. I'm a girl who likes her sleep so I felt a bit like poor Old Lady Macbeth as I stumbled through the quiet house looking for something to do. And here's the thing - I wasn't sure if the ideas I was having for my writing were just the ramblings of a sleep deprived woman or if maybe they were as useful as I thought they were. The upshot is I'll never know because I couldn't bring myself to turn the laptop back on. I wonder if other people write in the middle of the night and what the writing reads like in the cold, light of day? If I'm up at 2am tonight I might as well give it a go I've decided.

Monday, March 26, 2007

A few more words

I have written about 600 words today I think. I'm following the tip of little and often - thanks Liz - and it seems to have given me a surge of writing energy. The plan is now to maintain it! I am perplexed about some of the technical aspects of blogging and shall try and get to grips with A: when I mentionn someone, such as Liz above how do I give a link to their blog? And B how do I make the word meter show 85,000 rather than 85 which doesn't look as impressive so therefore not as motivating. I shall ponder thses when I have time and hopefully work them out.
So much to learn!!!!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

I can see clearly now...

I'm having a reflective day today after attending a really useful writing workshop yesterday at the Jubilee Library in Brighton. It was 3hrs long and looked at how to write a synopsis for your novel. It was led by Debbie Taylor (ex Mslexia editor and novelist) It deconstructed what a synopsis is and I was really interested to heat DT stressing that it was 'not a piece of creative writing but rather a map of what happens in your book.' She gave us an exercise where you had to write down the 10 main events/action/realisation that happen in your novel and it was fantastic. It really made you think. We also had to write a 'summary paragraph' of your book in 25 words. Her tip was to focus on your main character's crisis. Really hard to do but really made you think. I'm now sitting her on the sofa, late Sunday afternoon, listening to lovely music, having a glass of wine and looking back over Y'Day's notes. I feel that it has really helped me to see my story as a whole which is great for me as I was feeling overwhelmed by it all. But the mist has risen and I can see my story clearly now...the exciting thing is I think I have a complete story.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Snow, Sleet and Sunshine

Well so far today it has snowed, sleeted, blown a gale and now the sun is shinning and it's only lunchtime - freaky!!! I looked at my novel wordcount and sad to say I can't update it. But I have been working on a short story and clocked up 1300 words on that. My writing time comes in tiny, wee snatches at the moment due to 'paid' work committments and I can't really tackle the novel in a 20 or 30 min window but a short story I can. So at least I am writing. But more importantly I'm off to do some online shopping as I have just fallen in love with a gorgeous smock top in a glammy magazine!!! Oh how wonderfully shallow and so good for the soul!!!!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Sun is Shinning

Oh how lovely to pop in and find words of support and empathy. I have not managed to add to my word count this week due to work/life again!!!! But it is bubbling away in my head. I think for me the worst part of writing this novel is when the characters dissappeared and the day dreaming stopped. It was really strange as though all the energy was just sapped from me about the story. But now they're back, the sun is shinning and my next target is 60,000 - WOW that will be amazing!!! Happy Writing everyone!!!
15 March 2007 15:03

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Cracking the Bubbly

I did it - My glass ceiling of 50,000 words has been cracked, shattered, smashed and annihilated!!!!! Those 59 words that got me over the mark are the sweetest words I have ever written. I finally think I can finish this story. I reckon about 30,000 to go and I'm done. I'm off to the gym now to use my writing high to get me through the slog of a workout. I'll have my music up loud and know I'm returning to a bottle of chilled bubbly. I feel like I've earned it!!! That's my Saturday night taken care off. Husband cooking and me slurping with a silly, happy grin on my face. Hope your Sat night is also a good one!!!!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Writing is a Tease

Why is it now that I am in sight of the elusive 50,000 word milestone and have my writing energy back that I don't seem to have any time to write YET last week when I had time to write, I didn't write. There is something odd about the universe I've decided - it couldn't possibly be me could it? Maybe my Chakras are out of alignment or the moon eclipse is having a freaky impact. I have decided that this is what is going on. Last week the gray skies were getting me down and I'd used up all my reserves of summer energy that I store to get me through the winter - the result was I had no energy for anything. This week with the sun shinning and spring within sniffing distance I have energy again. So far so good - but then that weird thing happened. You start to do one thing and feel good about it - in my case it was working on my novel again and as a result of that momentum other things start to happen and you get the snowball effect.
Result is - this week lots of energy - lots of things on the go - equals no time to write!!!!
Goal for next week - Make it to 50,000 words - by either getting up earlier or going to bed later - I shall create more time.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Making the most of the day

I seem to have been given a new lease of writing life by starting my blog and the mantra I like for now is 'making the most of the day'. I find this really hard to do in February when my creative energy levels plummet. This then means I have to battle with myself daily over being lazy and undisciplined whilst another voice says 'Yes but I really need some sunshine now, my energy reserves have hit rock bottom.' I used to think that writing in the dark, winter months was great but that was before I left Australia to live in the UK. After eight winters here I'm reviewing my position on that one. I've just received an email from my gorgeous Aussie friend and in it she 'secreted a bucket load of sunshine, and a little sand from Clovelly beach (Sydney)'. It seems to have helped because despite the greyness beyond the window I am cheered on the inside. I am also buoyed by the fact that I have joined a writing community and thrilled to have had three visitors to my blog! The memory of dark February is slowly being eroded and I can almost smell Spring in the air.

Monday, March 05, 2007

First Posting!!

I've been thinking about having a blog for a while but I've been too scared. It's a frightening thing to put your thoughts out there and I suppose I am using it as a form of therapy to try and stay sane and motivated as I attempt to write my first novel. I've been writing in various forms for a long time and never thought the novel route was for me, then a couple of years ago an idea popped into my head and I eventually realised it had the potential to be a novel. As I write this my word count is 48,000 and hasn't grown much in the past few weeks. I've hit that brick wall that writers talk about and a mixture of fear, anxiety and inertia has gripped me. I really need to get past it so I've decided to blog to see if it helps. It's gotta be cheaper than paying a therapist that's for sure!!!

I am a regular reader of about four other writer's blogs but they are all published novelists and make their writing existence sound a lot more exciting and glamorous than mine - maybe they lie? - and like me they are still in their pyjamas at 4pm - hitting the word count button every five minutes and wishing that the phone would ring and some over hyped salesperson would be on the other end trying to sell them a stairlift. Or the other possibility has struck me that every other writer I either know or read about really does lead an exciting and glamorous life whilst I languish alone, waiting for the muse, even though I know deep down that I shouldn't be waiting, that I should just be writing!!!!!

At the moment I'm waiting for the postman - the highlight of my day. I think he has me tagged as a potential stalker type and has taken to paying random strangers to rush up to the front door and shove the mail through whilst he hides behind a tree.

Maybe my thoughts will strike a note of familiarity with some other struggling writers out there. If not I shall blog on in silence and accept the fact that my writing life is an unexciting anomaly.