Tag Archive | Meg Gardiner

July Review

So, as I made goals for July, I guess I should review them. If I have to. Which I do because there’s no point making them if I’m going to stick them in a cupboard and ignore them. So. I think I’ll tackle one at a time.

Write 250 words a day, 5 times a week. Well. I did some writing. No where near 5 days a week. I also totally forgot to keep track of when and what I wrote but I know it wasn’t that often.

5 blogs per week. I did 5 blogs a week for 2 weeks, and 4 the other 2 weeks. A pretty good effort I think.

Finish American Gods by Neil Gaiman and read two other novels. Oh I totally rocked this goal. AG finished. Four other books read. Yes FOUR! The Happy Home for Broken Hearts by Rowan Coleman, Love in the Air by James Collins, The Baby Group by Rowan Coleman and The Memory Collector by Meg Gardiner. Woop, that’s great. Maybe this month I should think more about WRITING than READING. Still, both the Rowan Coleman ones and the Meg Gardiner were BRILLIANT. In fact I stayed up way too late the last two nights to finish The Happy Home…!

Spend two hours per week on my writing course. Well, last week I probably spent more than two hours on it. But hadn’t touched it the rest of the month. Damn again.

So what have I learnt from this? I should maybe read a little less this month and write more. And definitely work more on my writing course.

I’ll set some goals for this month in the next couple of days, but it’s going to be hard when I know I’ll need to be job hunting. 250 words a day is not much though. I could do it in the morning or before bed if I can’t find time anywhere else (which I doubt I won’t be able to do!).

In other news, I had the most productive evening ever last night. After work I went to the recording of a TV show (‘Pointless’, pretty funny) so got in late. I planned to do the Bathroom, a Blog and Book (I was loving Bs). I managed to do the bathroom, post a blog, finish a book AND do some ironing. I need to take last night’s motivation for getting things done in the evening and carry it on to every other night of my life. Ooh, except tonight, I’m going out for dinner then to watch Inception. Can’t wait!

Flying Pigs

Oh. My. God. Rowan Coleman’s Short Story Competition CLOSES on FRIDAY. And where am I with my story? Well, I can’t tell you that cause my memory stick isn’t working on my computer here at work. And typically that’s where it’s stored!  That’s so annoying.

So, yeah. I really need to get a move on with this story. 4 days. Eek. Agh. Ahhhhhh!

Should be writing, not blogging…

Really should be…

But I can only access the story from home, so may as well carry on with this blog (don’t say I never try though!).

I’ve read so much this weekend. I had to work Saturday and Sunday on job numero 2, which was horrible, but it mean that I spent more than an hour on the tube a day – reading time! Plus the weather was so nice when I got home on Saturday, I went and sat in the park with my book. That means I’ve nearly finished The Memory Collector by Meg Gardiner.

*

Ok, I’ve just had a break and finished it. I’m pretty sure a thriller like that isn’t supposed to make you cry – especially not when you’re sat in the work canteen. I always see it as a good thing though – it means I’ve connected with the characters and I care. I did. Her next book in the series, Liar’s Lullaby, is available to buy now too. Can’t wait to read it!

Damn, I’ve just realised I need to do a review for The Memory Collector for my Thriller & Suspense reading challenge. Not until I’ve done my short story for Rowan Coleman.

I’m pretty sure that’s all I can waste my time writing about. I’ve been doing an early shift today, which means I will actually have an evening to myself tonight. I’ve been planning on going to the gym, but my back’s hurting so I’m not sure if it’s a good idea. Maybe I’ll go home, have dinner and write. Maybe pigs will fly… (and you were wondering where the title came from.)

Writing, Reading and Editing (or not?)

Ok, so I’ve done my writing for today. I’m trying for 250 a day, so 445 is good right? Does it matter that I’m going to delete 223 of them? I think I still wrote them so they should count – right? It’s not like this is NaNo where I need a certain number by the end of the month – it’s just to encourage ME to write. Right?

I’ve started this week’s Fiction Friday piece already. One of my FF buddies Walt always does his at the beginning of the week so when I was chatting to him yesterday I though I’d give it a crack starting then – rather than what I usually do which is read it for the 1st time and write it on Friday (god knows what I’ll do on Friday).

I’m not too sure where I’m going with it. I started it yesterday with a bit of an idea, but halfway through the idea changed. When I read it back today (all 150 odd words of it) it didn’t make that much sense as the idea changed in the piece, but I carried on with it anyway. Then I decided I couldn’t carry on anymore, so cut more than half of it, and started over. I think this idea’s working better.

I’ve never done that before. For Fiction Friday’s stories I always write and write until I feel I’ve done enough, or I have a finished story. I’ve never gone back and changed it. I feel sad for the words I’ve cut out. Sad that the idea’s gone.

I think maybe that’s why I’m struggling to start editing Italian Infatuation (yeah, you might remember that name – I’ve not written ANYTHING about it for ages and ages!). Ok, I started editing, but got to what, maybe page five? And pages one to four all need to be scrapped. I think I don’t want to delete so much. It’s sad they got written but will just get thrown away. Although the first few hundred will probably creep up somewhere in the future.

I started reading The Memory Collector by Meg Gardiner last night. When I was on the 3rd page I realised I’d read that bit before. My heart sank – had I read the book before? I racked my brain and couldn’t think of anything else about it except this scene. Then I remembered I must have read the first chapter on Meg’s website. Or Amazon. Or somewhere. I nearly wept with relief. I’ve done that before – bought a book then realised I’d already read it.

I’ve also done the opposite and not read a book cause I think I have – but am not sure. I’ve probably done that loads actually, but I’m specifically thinking of Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married by Marian Keyes. I think I’ve read it, but may be getting mistaken with watching the TV program it was made into. But I don’t remember any of it. I bought it from the library when they had a sale months ago, but haven’t picked it up, cause you know, I may have read it.

It’s only 10 days until the closing date for Rowan Coleman’s Short Story Competition. I have my ideas and bits and pieces written so far, but I can’t seem to make myself actually write anything properly. I think it’s cause although I love the idea of my story, I don’t know if there’s enough meat to it. I need dialogue, but I’m not sure how I’m going to get it in there. I guess I’ll never know if I don’t try!

I’ll go have a break, then start it when I get back.

A Quick Little Ramble

This is why I like goals. Without a July goal to post 5 blogs a week, I’d turn my computer off now and go to bed. But I have this goal, so instead I’ll sit and do a quick blog (aren’t they the ones that usually go on forever?!)

I finished American Gods by Neil Gaiman today. I enjoyed it, but I have no idea why. It’s not my kind of thing, and for half of it I was questioning what the hell was going on. Still, glad I read it. I was really amused by a bit I read today *spoiler alert* – it was a bit where the MC discovers there’s a god living in a town, and keeping it safe and stuff, but the price is the death of a child of the town each year. Amused me cause I wrote a story for Fiction Friday months ago where the devil came and took the town’s children as part of a condition of a deal made years ago. Get me,one of my ideas is similar to NEIL GAIMAN’s. He he!

I got The Memory Collector by Meg Gardiner for my birthday yesterday (my birthday’s my excuse for not blogging yesterday). I’ll be starting that tonight or tomorrow. I can’t wait, I’ve wanted to read it for AGES!

I missed a week of Fiction Friday a few weeks ago as I was away, but last week I started a story for it regardless. I read it today, I love the premise of it, but don’t know where to take it, it’s obviously only a short story, and the couple obvioulsy get together, but I don’t know if that’s enough. I like my short stories to have twists. I seem to be quite good at twists.

Ok that really is it. Bed for me now!

Thriller and suspense reading challenge 2010

Don’t you love it when things fall into place.  A few days ago I was talking about how I’ve not read enough books this year, and I’m going to make myself read lots lots more next year.  Then yesterday I was roaming about the World Wide Web, when I stumbled upon this reading challenge on ‘Book Chick City’ for next year.  What an excellent idea.  Read all about it and join in the fun here.  I’ve never done anything like this, but was inspired so much by Novel Push initiative and NaNoWriMo that I figure it’s a good way for me to go.

The challenge is to read 12 Thriller/Suspense novels from January to December.  I’m already thinking what I’m going to read. Meg Gardiner and John Grisham spring to mind immediately.  I’m a little annoyed I’m reading Digital Fortress now as that would be perfect for it, but hopefully Dan Brown’s new one will work for it.  I’ve read one Linwood Barclay book so this will be a good chance to read some more.  I also think I’ll use it as a way to discover new authors.  BCC is encouraging people to post reviews of the novels they read, so should be able to get some good people there.  Yay. 

In other news, I’ve nearly finished typing up the  bit of Italian Infatuation that was hand written.  By the time I go to sleep tonight it should be all done, I’ll just need to read it before I can print it for the mums in my life for their presents. 

I’ve just bought a magazine to do a review of for my writing course.  I’d like to get a big chunk of that done this weekend.  I’ve done it already, but it was for April/May’s issue, so slightly out of date.  As I know the set up, should be easy.  It’s just time-consuming as I need to count article length etc.

I read a forum a few days ago where people were discussing how long it takes them to write articles.  It made me realise I’m probably thinking too much about the article I’m writing for my writing course assignment.  I just need to do it.  It will take minimal research so really shouldn’t take forever.  Especially not the 8-9 months it’s been hanging around at the back of my mind.  I want to get a chunk of it done this weekend too.  I don’t know where I think all the time is going to come from this weekend – I’m working tomorrow, have a drinking night out tomorrow night, then have Christmas shopping to do on Sunday.  Maybe an early night tonight…

Cold Monday’s woes!

So much for blogging this weekend.  Saturday= hideous hangover.  Sunday= work + helping boyfriend move.  Therefore no blogging or writing. 

I still haven’t made any decisions over what I’m going to work on next.  I want to do holiday, but there’s just something stopping me.  I’d quite like a small project to work on next – maybe a short story or something, but I don’t seem to have any ideas.  Is this the lull that people say can occur after NaNo, or is it just me being lazy?  From tomorrow, no today actually, I’m going to set myself a 250 word a day goal.  I know I can do that pretty easily, I managed it in October anyway, so should be able to do it.  Work’s pretty quiet at the moment so I have the time (although I’ll use the excuse I’m spending a lot of time looking for Christmas presents on the internet so using it wisely!).

I’ve not got very far with the book I’m reading.  It’s Dan Brown’s Digital Fortress.  I like it so far, it’s almost started as a love story, which is a great way to get me hooked!  I’m not sure I’m going to understand it, I don’t understand the synopsis on the back cover, so who knows how I’m meant to understand the book.  We will see.

Meg Gardiner asked her readers on her blog today, what were their favourite books they read this year.  When I first read it I though that would be a great question, that I’d read loads of books, and it would be great fun going through them all to find which were my favourite.  Oh dear.  I’ve actually only read (or recorded here anyway) 17 books this year.  That’s shocking, I swear I used to read about 3/4 a month.  I need to step up on my reading next year. 

I then read through my list of books, and found that I read quite a lot of books that I wasn’t very impressed with, and loved?  Not many.  I wanted to do as other people had done and create a top ten.  I can’t put my hand on my heart and say I have 10 favourite books of 2009.  Out of the 17 I’ve read, I really enjoyed 3 and only loved 3.  6 out of 17.  That’s terrible.  The rest were either terrible (only a couple) or just ok.  The three I loved are:

The Dirty Secrets Club by Meg Gardiner

High Society by Ben Elton

This Charming Man by Marian Keyes

And the three I really enjoyed are:

Singletini by Amanda Trimble

Brown Girls by John Wesley Ireland

Perfect: Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard

Not much to show for a year’s reading. But at least there’s six I really enjoyed.  I will read more next year!  Better stop this and go read some….

September’s results

Here we go with how well I did achieving my goals for September:

  • Write 6,000 words.  As per normal in any form: stories, scenes, blogs, comments etc etc. I wrote a total of 13,390.  And remember I was on holiday for 9 days of that.  I was on fire.
  • 14 blogs right here on WordPress I did 18.
  • 2 weekend blog posts Yes, 2 weekend posts
  • Read 2 novels.  I’ve started three, so if I can finish 2 of them that would be good. I did read 2 novels – Meg Gardiner’s The Dirty Secrets Club and Mr Toppitt by Charles Elton
  • Work on my writing course.  Like last month I’m not going to add a specific goal.  I’d like to reread the last module booklet and continue with the next assignment.  Basically if I can do SOMETHING I’ll be happy. Finishing the assignment would be amazing, but lets not hope for too much.  I did lots of research for it, have pretty much written the questionnaire and decided how I’m going to get the interviewees.
  • Continue with the Storyboard for ‘Holiday’.  I didn’t get any further with this. 
  • All in all, that’s a pretty good months work I think.  Considering I was on holiday and did NOTHING while I was away, I’m really happy with this.  I’ve done so much random little bits of writing, which really got my count up.  I also did more writing for ‘holiday’.  Yes, September was a good month.  I want all months to be like September.

    I’m pretty hopeful October will be like it.  I’ve signed up to do a Novel Push Initiative.  You have to say that you are going to write 250 words at least a day on your novel.  (For more experienced people who have done this before, it’s 350 words).  So, I’ve signed up to write at least 7,750 words on ‘Holiday’ in the next month.  No excuses.  No duck outs.  This is serious writing time.  I’m really proud of myself for signing up for this, it’s going to be hard motivating myself to write at weekends, and on ‘holiday’ every day, but I think I’m up for the challenge.  Yay.

    In other news, I’ve started a twitter account for my writing.  It’s called new2writinggirl (original huh!).  I do have a personal account on there too, but hardly use it, so I’m not really sure what I’m doing on there.  I guess now’s the time to find out 🙂

    I think I’ll do October’s goals as a separate post – I find it easier to refer back to it that way.  I’ll even try to get it out today.  No promises though, I do have 250 words to do on ‘Holiday’ too.