#Writing Update

Firstly, sorry about the lateness of this. I was going to do it on Saturday but life had to take priority. Secondly, forgive the hashtag in the title. I am experimenting with Twitter still.

Image Source: GoodSearch Images

Word count for last week was 2,319 words. I was intending to rewrite the first chapter of my novella that I wrote a while ago but in the end though, all those words ended up coming out of my Camp story and an idea that was demanding to be written.

It is so frustrating to me that I haven’t managed to sit down and do the rewrite, especially as I might have worked out how to get past the block I’ve had with it. The first chapter has been and, still is, the part I just cannot get past and rewritten because of the nature of it being a lot of exposition, without there being too much obvious exposition. Perhaps it is my subconscious telling me I need to work on the new idea for the first chapter in relation to the rest of the story that is preventing me from writing it. In other words, planning! This is something which many of you may know is not exactly my strong suit outside of “basic idea and outline but may change.”

The idea that wouldn’t leave me alone, which contributed to the word count too, is just a mission for my magical spy character from my August 2012 Camp NaNoWriMo novel and her best friend who I think might become something more to her after all. It’s a little thing that could come to nothing but at least it is out of my system and may allow me to learn more about the characters. It is set in the same world as my novella so may actually be why my brain has offered up the idea, to reintroduce me to the world since the spy character is the original character that spawned the whole idea  That cannot be a bad thing, surely?

The Camp story is hitting a stride again after the train journey. When my FMC gets among more students, it might help. The fact that there is still more exposition should add words rapidly as well as giving me elements to play with for  later in the story. I’m wondering though when to have my FMC’s big secret come out? I know how she gets back into the good books with her classmates but that I feel is contingent on the secret reveal. How long can her secret be hidden realistically within a closed school environment? I know how rapid a secret can get out and around a classroom from experience but keeping secrets, well, that is not exactly territory I know about. Can anyone help? I would be very grateful for any advice offered.

All of this is not necessarily bad as I am at least writing but at the same time, it gets me no closer to getting my novella to the stage I feel I can be sending it out. It’s annoying and yet fun which makes this a sort-of problem but not entirely. Does that make sense? I suppose not.

So what are my intentions at least for this week? One of them is to try and finished the idea story that has plagued me, with the aim of just getting it out of my system as stated above. My other aim is to keep going with my Camp story. I think I also need to make time to sit down and go through the novella MS, mark out the story as is then look to previous drafts to see what I need to put back in perhaps before looking to see how the new opening would affect everything else that happens.

So those are my intentions for this week. I will just have to see how many actually come to fruition. I am still reading the latest Alex Verus book, Veiled, by Benedict Jacka and I have read the latest issue in Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London comic, Body Work. Both of which are big influences on the original idea for the novella and I know they influence all of my work in some form so it may help to keep me writing.

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Possible Anthology To Raise Money For Guide Dogs

Can anyone help out?

K Morris - Poet

I lost the majority of my vision at around 18-months-old as a consequence of a blood clot on the brain. In my early 20’s I received my first guide dog, Nixon (no jokes about Watergate please)! And a world of enhanced mobility was opened up to me. Since Nixon I have had 3 other dogs: Zeff, Drew and now Trigger my current four legged friend!

The Guide Dogs For The Blind Association receives no money from the government (see http://www.guidedogs.org.uk/supportus/fundraising/donate#.VBnqcBZUFb0) and relies wholly on donations from individuals/organisations.

As an author and beneficiary of the work of Guide Dogs I thought it would be worthwhile to give something back by producing a book of short stories and poems with all proceeds going to GDBA. I would, of course contribute a story. I am, however lacking in editorial/proof reading expertise and (if the project turns out to be viable) would be…

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30 Tips to get more exposure for a book

Well worth a read!

AUTHORS PROMOTION

Excerpt from my book How To Promote and Market Your Book by Madi Preda

30 Book Marketing Tips:a recruiting
I have included a variety of tips and I am sure that you will find something on the to do list that you can do to build your brand and sell your book.

1. Create a testimonial page on your website.
2. Offer advanced reading copies ARC.
3. Ask fans to post their reviews on your Facebook page.
4. Ask fans to post their reviews on Amazon.
5. Ask fans to post their reviews on Goodreads.
6. Offer bloggers advanced reading copies.
7. Set up a virtual book tour.
8. Create your street team.
9. Create seasonal videos: Mother’s day book, Summer Reads, Have Fun in the Sun, Autumn fall, Santa’s Book Recommendation, Spring-new reads, etc.
10. Register as an author on Amazon, Goodreads, AuthorsDen, Google Authorship.
11. Create a book…

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Why They Write

This caught my eye a few days ago but I am only just getting round to reblogging it now because I’ve been thinking about my own reasons for writing.

I agree with those that say that the reason changes day-to-day. For me, I write because my mind keeps coming up with stories, even before I realised what I was doing when I was younger. I suppose when I was younger, it was just my imagination coming up with games to play but as I got older, it continued and I started writing down the stories (a lot of fan fiction) because one of my school teachers pointed out that I had a gift for it.

It is also partly because I had just found my genre, the type of books and stories I liked to read and write, around the same time. JK Rowling’s Harry Potter series inspired millions of children around the world and I am one of those. Even now, I go back to the premise of the Harry Potter series and Enid Blyton’s school stories, especially the Malory Towers series occasionally.

I love fantasy stories, I enjoy school stories and over the years, I have also come to enjoy romance, crime, drama and some comedy and sci-fi stories. As I have read them, I have incorporated that in my writing. My writing can become dark in places but it can also be light.

What is it about them? It’s the escapism. It’s the discovering a world different to our own, sometimes right on our doorsteps. It’s the common premise of school that most people will be able to relate to. It’s the rooting for the characters to be together, the solving of a puzzle, the everyday dilemmas that we experience in our lives and the fabulous funny moments that we think of later which makes you smile and laugh out loud.

Even in the stories set in a place different from our own, there is the baseline of common themes and occurrences in our lives. That’s what attracts me to those sorts of stories and probably attracts many, many others to them too.

Reading and writing are inextricably interlinked I feel. You can’t do one without the other.

I also write because it is a type of therapy and escapism. When the life is getting stressful and tough, it is a nice way to escape for a while and to get out all those feelings through characters on to the physical (or virtual!) page. If I didn’t have an outlet for those sorts of feelings, and others, I don’t know where I would be.

I would love to get paid to write and maybe that will happen in the future but for now, it’s therapy, escapism and an outlet for all the stories clamouring in my head.

Is my answer clichéd? Perhaps but that’s how I feel today. Who knows? Tomorrow, I might have a completely different answer.

Legends of Windemere

Kenshin Himura (How I feel) Kenshin Himura

Sorry!  I totally forgot that I was going to list people’s answers and reasons to Monday’s question.  Please check out the blogs and published works of everyone:

“I’m on board with most of that but I write poetry and know there is no money in that.” The Mirror Obscura

“I love writing because I’m totally addicted to it since the day when I started reading “anything” so seriously” Insight

“For me as a total readerholic and mental escape artist all my life, the writing came late, but now that particular joy of creating worlds, people, dragons, scenarios – whatever – can’t be matched by anything else that I’ve ever done.” Jo Robinson

“I think the reason evolves over time. I began writing as a way to express myself in a healing way. But then I began writing poetry. Poetry is a great self-expression for me and I…

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Exercise the wr…

mylittlebookblog

Exercise the writing muscle every day, even if it is only a letter, notes, a title list, a character sketch, a journal entry. Writers are like dancers, like athletes. Without that exercise, the muscles seize up.
– Jane Yolen

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Literary Prize for unpublished novels or short story collections

Any use to anyone?

BRIDGET WHELAN writer

unpublished novelThe SI Leeds Literary Prize for unpublished fiction by black and Asian women writers in the UK is now accepting entries for the 2014 Prize. The prize runs biennially and the first award was made in October 2012. The three prize winners receive £2,000, £750 and £250 for first, second and third place. The deadline is March 31st.
The prize has been created and run by Soroptimist International of Leeds, in partnership with the Ilkley Literature Festival and independent publishers Peepal Tree Press and has been supported by Arts Council England,

The Award is open to published and unpublished women writers, over the age of 18, of Black or Asian descent who are resident in the UK. Ethnicity will be self-defined by entrants. As a guideline, Black or Asian descent in the context of the Award signifies any black background, including:-

  • Black African

  • Black Caribbean

  • any other Black background

any Asian background, including

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Costa Tips for Short Story Writing

Need some help writing short stories?

Victoria Hislop, one of this years judges for the Book Awards, has offered her top ten tips for writing short stories. They’re available for download on a handy PDF file here: https://www.costa.co.uk/media/117364/Top-10-Tips-for-Writers.pdf

Voting for the Costa Short Story Award 2013 is still open, closing on 17th January 2014, and you can read and vote for your favourite of the six short listed stories here. You can even download the stories to read or even listen to and from the same page, you can also check out last years stories too.

The winners of the Short Story and Book of the Year Awards will be announced later this month. Details for the 2014 competition have not yet been announced but you will find a general timeline for the competition on the website.