Archive | April 2009

Nearing month end…

Only a couple of days left until the end of the month.  This poses a couple of questions.

1.  Where the hell is 2009 going?  We’re now 1/3 of the way through it.  Wow.  When I was younger people used to tell me that time started going faster the older you get.  That is so true.  I dread to think how quickly it will go when I’m 50!  Or 70?

2.  How did I get on with my goals for April?  Pretty well. 

Today’s post makes 14 this month – my target.  If I can squeeze in a few more I can go way over my target. 

Last week I reached my total for words written.  I’m really impressed with that.  I thought 6,000 would be a hard target to reach, seeing as I’ve not done any proper serious writing for years.  I found it quite easy though.  It helped that I tried the writing for 5 minutes every hour while at work.  Although I only managed to do this about once, it kept writing in the forefront of my mind.  Therefore when I had some spare time, I started writing. 

I finished reading This Charming Man by Marian Keyes and wrote my review of it (https://newtowritinggirl.wordpress.com/what-im-reading/this-charming-man-by-marian-keyes/)

I read the next three modules of the writing course.  I’ve not made notes which is something I’d like to do, but not top of my priorities.

Assignment two.  Ah.  Um.  No.  I’ve started to review a magazine.  Yeah, not getting on too well with this.  Need to give myself a kick to get me going on this.  I have been thinking about it quite a lot.  I have done some research into the kind of magazines I think I could write for.  Step up on this next month (and the last couple of days of this month).  I do carry  the magazine I’m currently reviewing round with me.  Does that count as a step in the right direction?

Writing down dreams/day dreams. I’m not too sure how I’ve done with this.  I’ve written a few down on scraps of paper lying around as I’ve thought of them.  Or sent myself emails with the details or even saved them as drafts on here.  I’ve not as yet put them in order so I have no idea how many I’ve written down.  I’m getting semi good at it.  I probably write them down every 3 or 4 days.  Better than nothing!

All in all I’m quite happy with my progress, especially as I only really had half the month to action them.  I presume that means I have to double my plan for next month?  Or more than double it to push myself?  My priority must be my next assignment.

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I hate titles

Honestly I do.  I love writing this blog (it is after all writing).  But every time I start I have this dread, ‘oh no, I have to think of a title’.  It’s much easier when there’s a main point to the blog, you can base it on that.  Today’s has no point, it’s just the thoughts coming out of my head.  I’ve called enough blogs ‘Random thoughts’ etc that I’d probably bore myself to death if I called another one that (and I’m way too young to die!)

If I write the blog, thinking that I’ll make a title up after, I always forget to add one.  No title is worse than having to think of one.  Maybe I could start calling them ‘No title’.  I could have ‘No title 1’, ‘No title 2’…  Could get a little boring though.  And repetitive.  Like I’ve told you before I never repeat myself. 

Moving on.  I read an article in the Independent today about a new machine a bookshop in London is getting.  It will print and bound any one of HALF A MILLION books for you in 5 (yes FIVE) minutes.  They’re hoping to increase that to a million in the next few months.  I’m really impressed with this idea – and surprised no one has invented this before.  Just imagine if every single book ever was on there.  You’d never have to traipse round bookshop after bookshop looking for the book you want/need/desire.  Although I do love book shops.  Walking round looking at all the books I’d like to read.  Adding them to an ever expanding list that I will never get through even if I started now and didn’t stop until I died.

I went hunting on the internet today for ideas of something to write (yes, I could have worked on Holiday, but felt like I needed something else to write at that time).  I decided I’d click on the 1st link and do the 10th idea they had on their 1st page.  1st page had 9 ideas.  The 9th one had 4 sections so I decided to do the 2nd on the 9th, which you could kind of call the 10th idea.  Anyway, it was to start a story with..

Blueberry yoghurt slid unapologetically off the spoon and down the front of…’

 

It took me a while, but I’ve come up with a short story.  Well, I have 100 words written, but a 500 word plan of a short story (it’s a very detailed plan).  I’m going to try to finish it over the weekend.  I might even put it on here when it’s done (see if that will give me a push to actually do some writing on a weekend – something I’m not managing at the moment!).

I’m doing the magazine analysis for assignment 2 (slowly).  I’m currently counting how many words each article is.  I know there’s cheating ways to do it, like count how many in one line then multiply that by how many lines there are in the article, but for some reason I want to do it accurately.  So I’m counting every single word.  It’s really quite annoying.  This is just magazine one.  I really need to do a few copies of each magazine.  I think for the assignment I only need to do one, but to analyse properly if I’m going to try to sell writing to it, I need to do a few.  At least there’s plenty of adverts in the 150+ magazine.  Imagine if it was front to back articles – ahhhhhhhh!

They say this article I am producing for this assignment may be the 1st piece of work that I try to get published.  I am so scared of that idea.  I don’t feel  like I’m ready to get something published.  I’ve only been doing this for a few months, surely I need longer?  Eek.

Anyway, will move that thought from my head and start thinking about the weekend.  Yay!!!!

Have a good one 🙂

Worrying day today?

I managed to do some writing yesterday, even though I wasn’t feeling at all inspired.  I sat down and decided I’d just write.  Just whatever came into my head.  I started reading a ‘How to write a novel’ book once, and one of the suggestions was whenever you get the chance, just write.  So I just wrote. It turned into a 600 word scene that will be in Holiday.  Wow.  Was not expecting that.

That’s now the 3rd time I’ve been writing something that I thought would just be a random idea and it’s turned out to be a scene for the book.

I’m quite happy about this.  I’m getting lots of ideas.   But I’m not really sure the way I’m going about it is right.  Although in writing is there a right and wrong or should you just do whatever works for you?  I was thinking as I’ve never got further than 6,000 words with anything, the problem might be that I didn’t have a plan.  I didn’t know where the idea was going, what was going to happen etc. 

Holiday has a plan.  I know where it’s going so what I’m doing now is filling in the spaces.  If the story’s A to Z, I’m making up B, C, D… as I go along.  I guess I just need to do it.  If it works it works, if it doesn’t I’ll try something else.

My other little worry is that although I’ve written these scenes, they haven’t had an ending.  I’ve got to the end of my allotted time writing, or my available time writing and then left them.  It’s worrying me that I can’t finish them.  Should I be concentrating on finishing one scene?  Or am I right to capture any idea as it comes along at this stage and develop them later?  I guess again, I need to try this and if it works, great, if not I’ll try something else.

I’m not sure where my original idea notes for Holiday are.  But I really need them.  I’m sure I had given the main characters names and a few basic details so I want to go on them, not change them (although his name did come to me yesterday, I’m not sure if it was what I decided on before).  It was a couple of years ago, so who knows where it might be.  I feel I should start paying more attention to them now I’m writing more about them.  I want to know their likes and dislikes, their hopes and fears etc.  I feel like I’m beginning to sound like a writer.  Ooh, exciting. 

Totally separate note, I’ve changed my dashboard colours to blue.  I love it!  Except the second line from the top which seems to be some weird blue/grey colour.  Oh dear, a colour is making me happy!  That’s probably enough for today then!

Where’s the inspiration gone?

I’ve just done a word count for the last week and a half (since I made my plan for the rest of April to write 6,000 words), and am happy to say I’ve reached it.  Yes with another 9 days to write I have already reached my total.  I’m really proud of myself. 

 

I’m now a little worried that I’m going to not bother writing any more this month.  You know the feeling, I’ve done all I have to, I’ll give it a miss today.  That one day turns into two, which turns into a week etc.  Today I’m feeling like I can’t be bothered to write anything, I hope that’s just because I’m tired, not because I’ve lost inspiration.

 

Honestly today I feel like I can’t come up with any ideas.  Luckily for me, I’ve got a couple of plans written, so I just need to write the words to make it a story.

 

I went for a walk at lunchtime yesterday in the sun.  I had an idea that I may in the near future go sit in a park and do some writing there.  My favorite place is in the sun (on a beach would be better!) so I’m sure that will give me some inspiration!  Maybe I’ll do that Friday.  It seems like a nice way to end the week (fingers crossed for warm weather please).

 

I bought a notebook today.  I’ve sectioned it up so there’s a section each for writing ideas (ideas, plans, stories), dreams & daydreams, word count and To Do list.  I’m going to carry it round with me all the time, and just write in it.  I’m quite excited. 

 

Right, off to write (maybe about Mr Wright, ha ha!)

Quick, quick

I’ve been meaning to write a blog all day (it’s not like I’m busy and can’t find the time!) and yet I leave it until the last 15 minutes of my day (work day that is) to start it.  But I’ve written a plan for it.  Is that excessive?  Writing a plan for a blog?  I’ve heard of writing a plan for a book, for a story or even for a day/month.  But for a blog?  To be honest there’s not really anything interesting on it.  Must get on with it though.

I’ve spent my spare time over the last 24 hours reading through my magazine to analyse it.  I am shocked.  In a 170 page magazine there are only 17 full page or longer articles.  1 per 10 pages (I always knew maths was my strong point!).  Wow.  That’s 9 pages of adverts and mini stories (pages made up of small articles – maybe there’s a technical word for this).  Really that’s not many. 

I had just been shocked at the small amount.  Writing this has made me think that with only that few articles in each month’s magazine (presuming every month is the same) there must be some very very strong competition to get published.  I think this is something I need to NOT think about too much.  I don’t want to start getting bogged down with ‘How the hell will I ever get published?’ thoughts.  Above all I’m doing this course because I really enjoy writing – anything I get from it is simply a bonus!!

I planned to go out at lunchtime to buy a notebook.  I need something I carry round 24/7 to put ideas in.  The seem to be coming through at an alarming rate.  It’s great.  I’d also put dreams in it.  And other (non writing stuff).  I just need to get one.  Tomorrow.

These thoughts that are coming through at an alarming rate – I’ve actually done something with them.  This morning I had two random ideas that I thought would maybe make good short stories or something, but when I started writing them down, realised they would fit really well into Holiday.  Holiday, I have decided, is what I’m going to call the book I’m writing – a working title that is.  Will maybe confuse when I tag ‘Holiday’ that I mean holiday, but that’s something I’ll have to live with. 

Writing’s gone really well today – I’ve tried that write for 5 minutes every hour.  For 5 hours I actually remembered to do it, and managed over 800 words.  If I carry on at this rate Holiday will be written in no time at all.   Not to sound negative but IF is the important word there.

Monday moans

Yes, after everything I said yesterday about not worrying about the next written assignment (magazine article), I am worrying.  I think this worrying is down to the fact that the first two magazines I picked up to start analysing (therefore eventually write something for) don’t accept articles from outside sources.  It’s kind of disheartened me a little bit.

But, there are many many more magazines out there.  I’ve just got a list of women’s interest ones off the Internet – of  a list of nearly 40, there must be some that I could write an article for.  I just need to find it.  I will probably have to go out and buy about 3,000 magazines though.  Oh well.  It will be worth it.

I’ve just remembered when I first woke up this morning I could recall all of my dream I’d just had.  I didn’t write it down so have forgotten it.  That’s so annoying.  I’m going to buy a little journal book thing today to keep by my bed which will hopefully make me write them down.  Hopefully.

I’m not sounding very happy today.  The sun is shining and it’s quite warm, so I should be.  I think it’s the Monday blues.

STOP.  Monday morning blues now over (would hope so my 5pm!).  I’ve found a magazine that accepts articles from other people.  I’ve also stopped stressing about the assignment.  All is now good with the world (doesn’t take much does it – that is a good thing though).

I read about a website tool/game/thing last week – Frankenstory (I haven’t learnt how to insert a link yet so it’s www.frankenstory.com).  The website works like the children’s game consequences.  First you go to the website and start a story in 40 words.  The story is then sent to a friend of  yours, but they can only see the last 10 words.  The same happens again twice.  Then you both are sent all four sections of the story.  I have now done this twice with a friend, with what I think are quite good results.  We are planning on doing a story a day.  That will help with my word count this month.

Speaking of word counts, all I’ve written today is this and my Frankenstory (80 words), so really must get on with some more.  Adios.

Assignment one – passed!

‘Passed’ is really the wrong word.  My writing course isn’t the not the kind of course you pass or fail.  But my tutor’s comments were on the whole very positive.  Such a relief – it means I have hope of doing something with writing.  If you are so bad they think you would never be able sell anything they let you know, and you can’t carry on with the course.  Big relief.  I have potential.

I’ve also finished the modules I have to read before I start the next assignment.  I’ve now read it, and I am scared.  I need to review a magazine I would like to sell articles to – ok.  Not easy, but do able.  Then I need to write a 150 word brief of an article I would write for that magazine.  Ahhh.  But not the worst thing.  I then need to write the article.  Ahhhhh.  Really ahhhhhhh.  Hopefully will be a lot less scary once I’ve done the review of the magazine.  I’m going to focus on doing that, not even think of the next two sections.

I’ve now done a blog on a Sunday.  The sun’s shining.  It’s a good day 🙂