Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Where has all the writing gone?

I am not doing very well with my writing at the moment. Accepting that it is half term and hubbie is working away, so my opportunities are reduced anyway. Writing class is on a two week break too and that always gets the creative juices going. However, these things are not the problem. Instead I find myself caught in the guilt and desire war.

I want to work on my novel, but I should be working on my distance learning course. I want to work on my novel, but I should be ironing, tidying the house, decorating…. The result of these internal fights is inaction. I achieve nothing of significance. I tell myself I’ll do a little housework and then I’ll write, but then the opportunity gets hijacked by phone calls or visits. When I finally sit down in the evening (after many journeys upstairs to settle little one) I’m too tired to write. I seem to need more sleep at the moment so my wonderful early starts are not happening.

I’m driving myself mad. The reason for writing this blog is to give myself a great big kick up the backside. Where has all my Nanowrimo discipline gone? Do you have this problem? How do you deal with it please?

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Hope It Rubs Off

It is exciting to see that several of my friends have had debut novels published. I do hope it rubs off on me.

Check out here for Serenity Woods ‘Black Hawke Down’ and her website serenitywoods.blogspot.com

Also Rachel Lyndhurst’s 'Storm’s Heart’ here and her website http://rachellyndhurst.blogspot.com/

Note: Both of these books have adult themes.

Congratulations to you both. Wishing for rave reviews and many more titles from each of you.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Valentine Talk

I survived speaking to the local WI on Valentine’s Day. I commented how appropriate it was to be speaking about family trees on 14 February as after all romance and relationships are the building blocks of a family.

The talk was entitled ‘You and Your Family Tree’. The “You” bit was to encourage the ladies present (and indeed anyone reading this) to write down their family stories and memories for future generations. I also asked them to label their photographs. I read an extract from my mother’s memoirs about when she contracted diphtheria (a little daunting as she was in the audience!).

I knew that some of the attendees would have traced their family trees and agonised for a long time about how to make the talk interesting for them too. In the end I focussed on my 4times great-grandfather who was born in 1795. His life spans several changes in records. He is definitely an ancestor who wanted to be found as he left me lots of traces of his existence. This format enabled me to cover church records, birth, marriage and death certificates, tithe maps, vestry minutes, census, inquest documents, wills, monumental inscriptions, a bill of sale, photographs and many more.

It seemed to go down well. I could have easily talked for two hours instead of one, but then I have been tracing family trees for thirty years now. The added bonus was the delicious cake and cup of tea at the end and a cheque for the local Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Found the Plot

For the past few weeks I have been in a wilderness with my WIP. Several plot red-herrings and cul-de-sac writing have left me not knowing where to turn. This morning I finally cracked it!

Last night I printed out everything I have written for this book and combined it with handwritten notes that haven't been typed up yet. I asked myself some searching questions about what the book was actually about and went to sleep.

This morning I went to "The Office" aka Sainsbury's cafe, ordered myself a large latte (skinny of course) and a bottle of water, then I sat on a double table with some index cards and a huge piece of paper and finally wrestled the plot into submission. It means discarding some of the things I have already written, but I think the plot is now stronger than it was before and has a logical flow.

Cue good mood after doldrums. Even my current skin allergy, which means my face is covered in swollen red blotches, can't damped my spirits today. There is a long way to go but at least the road is now clear. Just need to keep at bay those doubt gremlins and believe I can follow through and a book will be born!