Interviewed by Madison

My first blog post in ages and it’s a total cheat. A few weeks ago my writer friend from the twitter machine, Madison, asked if she could interview me for her own blog. This genius approach to keeping up with her blog while busy was inspired and it inspired me with the cheaty idea to link to it. Hahaha!

So please, feast your eyes on Me, interviewed by Madison! Also, you should check out the rest of her blog because she’s pretty darn cool and writing a story about a merman.

A quick update from me, since it has been so very long. I am currently fighting through another Camp NaNoWriMo session. This time I am working on the new Project 2 on the Other Projects tab, hoping to get part 1 of 4 completed, with plans to do part 2 in June. I’ll be out of action from April 30th to May 15th as I’m away on holiday but then I’ll spend the rest of May hardcore editing on Through the Black because I’ve got a bunch of betas lined up and they’re getting impatient. Eeep! I doubt I’ll have it finished before the next camp but I’ll be getting relatively close.

Hope you enjoy the interview and keep writing!


Post NaNoWriMo Plans

I return victorious! That crazy time most people call November has come to a close and with it a few thousand people are feeling their crazy slowly wash away. They are also going for that much coveted “good night’s sleep” that we’ve all heard so much about. I’d just like to take this opportunity to shout a huge CONGRATULATIONS at everyone who hit that wonderful 50k mark and also at anyone who wrote anything last month because really, every word takes you that little bit closer to a finished story or just being a better writer. Practice and commitment are what it takes to improve and stories don’t getting written unless someone’s actually writing them so, if you stuck down some words, congrats! You did good. Through the course of NaNoWriMo, I managed to write the majority of my serial killer horror story “The Deconstructor” and am now just three and a half chapters from completion. Huzzah! Now that NaNo is out of the way, it is time to plan for the future. Or, at least the next few months.

My current plan of action is as follows:

1.) Continue to write a bit every day until this WIP is completed to the first draft level (thank you, Write Chain Challenge).

2.) Do a quick read though and make a list of things I know I want to change and save that for later.

3.) Go through Twyned Earth Book 3 and add in those missing scenes that have been annoying me for a month and a half now.

4.) And this is the scary one… Start proper, brutal, crazy edits on Twyned Earth Book 1 in preparation for sending to the dreaded beta buddies. See what I mean? Scary. Letting actual human people read my work.

Guys. I’m scared. I still kind of hyperventilate at the thought but you know what? There gets to a certain point where you reading your story is going to do nothing to improve it. Fresh eyes are a vital ingredient when it comes to this stage in writing a novel. I haven’t even decided if I’m going to go for publishing yet but truth be told, even if I have this thing sitting on my hard drive for the rest of my life with only me to read it, I want it to be a good read when I do. So, congrats again to anyone else who NaNo-ed and enjoy whatever plans you’ve set out next for yourself.

Admitting Defeat

As I may have said in my last blog post, I had BIG plans for October. Doing a full rough edit on Book 3, working through proper plotting on my NaNo novel, making a fairly complex Halloween costume from scratch and becoming a Pokemon master (again). I had every intention of doing all of those things. However, real life has decided to be a bit of a git about it.

Currently at work there are extremely stressful levels of things to be done this month and that was before my two co-workers had to have long periods of time off. So, I’m on my own, running around like a headless chicken and just generally going doolally. And when I think of everything I need to do at home, I freak out even more.

The trick, as I realised this morning, is figuring out what I do actually NEED to do as opposed to just really, really wanting to. That list is pretty short. I’ve always tried to maintain that writing is not a chore for me – it is my hobby. So, in the interests of keeping that alive, I’m admitting to myself that I cannot do everything that I want to and that I should actually try and relax a little at some point between the end of work and bed time.

As such, I will be doing my Write Chain Challenge two pages a day of editing on Book 3 and then that’s it. It is time to plot, craft or chillax. Hopefully this means I will be less stressed out during the day and that I’m actually producing a better quality at everything I do.

So, I’d just like to take this moment to remind you that it’s okay to adjust your goals as your situation changes. Do what it takes to be happy and functional, even if that occasionally means doing nothing.

A Zombie and a Serial Killer walk into a bar…

… and the bar tender gives them the old stink eye, saying “Sorry fellas, one of you’s got to get gone. This here be a one theme pub, y’hear?”

This year is running away from me faster than I can keep up with it and very soon it’s going to be November all over again. Now, I am hoping to have the third and final book of my Twyned Earth series finished by then so I need to think about what to write for NaNoWriMo. I’ve got a couple of ideas I’m really keen to write and I just can’t pick between them. So, on the advice of my Twitter writing buds, I’m putting it to a poll.

If you’ve read my Other Projects page, these two will look suspiciously familiar. The question (that is, the question I’m asking you – yes, you!) is which one should I vomit onto my laptop in November?

Option 1 – Desolate

Caitlyn has been living happily in the Cairngorms for the past five years. She has everything that she wants and that she needs. Everything she has is something that she has built or procured herself. She is the epitome of self sufficiency and logical reasoning. Life is good. She barely even notices the zombie apocalypse any more.

However, her odd sort of paradise cannot last forever. As the near extinction of the human race is proving – nothing ever does. When Jake (the first living person she has seen in half a decade) almost gets eaten on her front doorstep, her life of regulation and routine is thrown into chaos and looks like it’s about to get a hell of a lot shorter.

Option 2 – The Deconstructor

This morning Eric warned me that the killer no longer took only female victims. And strangely, I did appreciate his concern. Unfortunately, this news had greater implications for me than my own bodily safety. There was a bigger picture at hand here. The notorious killer, nicknamed ‘The Deconstructor’  by the media, had claimed their first male victim. The profile of the killing matched the others like a carbon copy, with the exception of this one detail. Yes this was worrying because, unlike the media, I knew that I had never killed a man.

The emergence of a copy cat killer leads to a serial murderer reconsidering his way of life. As he begins to ask dangerous questions about his urges and mysterious master, his whole world begins to unravel around him.

Thursday’s Children: My Fan Art

A weekly blog hop where writers come together to talk about whatever inspires them. Join us!

Hello all! I’m finally back for another go of Thursday’s Children, a weekly blog hop in which writers share the things that inspire them. After a long and stressful couple of weeks, today’s post is going to be short and sweet. The inspiration that I’m writing about today comes from a single item – my first and so far only piece of fan art (which, considering the number of people who have read my work, is pretty good). Needless to say, I was so excited by this that it became a source of massive inspiration for me.

On the NaNoWriMo forums, I found a thread where people were asking about each others ‘writing totems’, something that until last year I had not heard of before. From the Wikiwrimo entry, a writing totem is “an item (or several items) that helps inspire, get one in a writer-like state of mind, and help battle writer’s block” which can be anything that inspires you and your story.

At the time I couldn’t think of anything that fit the bill but I loved the idea of a writing totem. And then as a Christmas gift, my best friend and beta reader gave me a crochet doll of one of my characters. To say that I was absolutely delighted was an understatement. It made me so happy to think that one of my characters stuck with her enough that she knit him to life. Whenever I see it, I remember how I felt when I first saw it. Inspired.

So here is Tony – gangster, vicious, crocheted. Fear him in his adorable glory!

The Notorious Tony Cantsayhisname

The Notorious Tony Cantsayhisname – Cute Edition

Now here is the linky you’ve all been waiting for! Go forth and read some awesome posts!

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Thursday’s Children: NaNoWriMo

First of all I would like to thank all of the other Thursday’s Children bloggers who dropped me a line last week! You guys are great and I felt so welcomed! If you missed last week’s post, Thursday’s Children is a weekly blog hop where writers share the things that inspire them. If you haven’t already, you should check out the link a the bottom to find all the other blogs that participate – you won’t regret it.

This week myself and a whole bunch of other writers are preparing for the madness of CampNaNoWriMo. This is a spin off of the yearly NaNoWriMo event, also know as “Month where several thousand crazy people try and write a novel.” These events inspire me to write for a few reasons (not including the fact that it is ridiculous fun) and are probably the only reason I have actually managed to complete two novels from start to finish. Okay, the deadline might not be for the finished article but getting 50k of the way through a novel is a damn good incentive to keep on going.

So why would I call it ‘inspiring’? For one thing, it’s a major kick up the arse. You have a day to start and a deadline. You can faff all you like before and after but when the month starts it is GO time. Write, write, write! There is something so freeing about having an excuse to just spew your imagination onto the page and not worry about the editing or anything. The freedom to just push forward with a story while knowing there are a few thousand other people doing exactly the same thing is a fantastic feeling and results in me getting stuff done! Having said that, the anticipation helps as well. I’ve been so excited for this to start that I have been meticulously planning every aspect of my story so that come April first I will be able to jump right in and go for gold.

Then there is the competitiveness. When it isn’t a NaNo month, I find my writing is greatly interspersed with internet breaks, unnecessary snack breaks and just general faffing about. But when the crazy starts again I have a goal and the competitiveness in me just drives me to write and write and write. If you ask anyone, they would probably tell you I am the least competitive person they know. It would probably be true as well. I despise competing against other people. Absolutely detest it. Competing against myself? Now that is a different story!

Of course, the community is also a great inspiration. There are all of these other people all going through the same crazy experience as you and they are all helping each other out through it. Between writing buddies, writing sprints, idea bouncing and critique swapping there is a lot to keep you going. What’s better as a frantic, sleep deprived, barely sane writer than more frantic, sleep deprived, barely sane writers? Exactly!

That’s it from me today. As I’ve already said, NaNo has been eating all my time and that will continue for the next month so my blog may seem a little quiet until May. In the meantime, why don’t you check out these awesome blogs in the link? You know you want to.

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