Category: Writing

A New Year, A New Focus

Somehow we are at another new year, and I’ve been a published author for more than five years.

This year though I have decided something. It is an extension on a decision I made last year when I realised my job was causing me more stress than ever before. I’ve given so much to my work and know first hand, just how much they don’t care. More than than I will not go into, suffice to say it is why I went back to study.

This year I’m taking significant time off work, thank heavens for long service leave, to focus on the things in my life that make me happy. For me those things are study and writing.

I have the first book of my new series almost ready to send to my editor and I’ve started looking at cover art.

For study I am overloading the semester I am off work because I have a goal to finish my study this year. By Christmas I should have completed my Masters Degree.

As for work, well we will see where that all goes. Now though, even as I am still at work counting down my shifts till my leave starts, I am hitting word targets in my WIP, getting words down in a short or two, and working on a non-fiction project.

And just to be really ridiculous, I’ve booked myself in for an audition (because I’m going to have so much free time).

Oh, and my vow with my loved ones this year, (the year I turn the big 5 0) is to have a year filled with memory creating moments. Cue show tickets, good food and fun times.

One More Step

It’s April. It’s Easter and I’ve been in a slump.

Slumps happen, this one was just a bit of a bitter pill to swallow after the writing had been coming so thick and fast. I had been very productive writing for Vocal, and working on new book projects, it was going so well. Then it wasn’t.

I finished book three of my new series and wasn’t sure what to do next, it seemed my old world, that of Leira and the Oparna, was again begging for attention. Then I don’t know what happened. Everything stopped. The flow dried up.

I took a different position at work for a while, which was good, a sort of promotion but more it gave me the chance to learn things again and I do like to learn and master new skills. Problem was my dissatisfaction with my normal working life was becoming more obvious. I’d go to work and come home completely drained, I wanted nothing more than to curl up on the couch, even on my days off all I did was binge shows.

I made sure I still worked out when I could, after a month of doing nothing more than a walk every now and then. And I would still try and write a few sentences everyday. Until that dried up. I couldn’t even really pick up a book to read for any length of time, vey unusual for me.

Life though is choices, and I couldn’t keep going like this, even if the plans for me that I have for the future don’t happen, doesn’t mean I have to let the couch win. I have back up plans for my back up plans and finally my characters started talking again with clarity. Geez that last one felt good.

Thinking about it though, I wonder if my characters were looking after me for a bit, they know how tired I am so they forced me to rest.

I know this gives them way more life than they really have, but hey, when these guys talk to me the way they do who the heck cares. Their stories want to be told, and I want to tell them. I love writing and always feel a little out of sorts when that part of my life is not flowing properly. I can deal with the rest when the creative is in play.

I love a challenge and I love a deadline, what I’m not so good with is cutting myself some slack and allowing myself to rest. I think though I’m ready for my next deadline, I’ve got leave coming up shortly, let’s see how much of my next book I can get done.

Also there is that first draft copy of book three that needs to be typed up.

Oh and if anyone is interested I’ve just finished another short featuring Evayn, I just don’t know what I’m going to do with it yet.

It’s Been A Rough Few Weeks

After my last lot of leave where I was so productive, I had to go back to work. It seems that has put a stop to the creative flow. Or a least slowed it down. The problem with that is creating is my happy place.

Today though has been a good day. I wrote a piece that has been on my mind for one of my things, then I did a piece for a competition and now I’me writing this. Somewhere as well I’ll make some time to get some editing of book two done.

The biggest issue I’ve had, apart from work in the last little while had been my computer, it apparently has a glitch where is saves things in the system disk that is shouldn’t and that means I don’t have enough memory to do things like upgrade my OS, which was desperately in need of being done. I also wanted to get Final Draft to help with a couple of the new projects I was working on, which necessitated the OS update.

After more messing around than I would have liked, we found a solution, it’s not perfect but it did what was needed so now I’m adjusting to so many updates and new programs it’s almost like I have a new computer.

Added to all this there have been a few family issues to stir into the mix and I just feel frustrated that I can’t write more. Just when it feels like I’m at the end of my rope I have a day like today where I got up, decided ‘screw it’, I’m not going to let the grey clouds close in today, or at least not until I’ve managed to be a bit productive.

On the upside, I’m dabbling new projects, working on others and am happy when I get anything done on any of them. Shame I’ve still got work to go to this week. The good thing is I worked my 6 weeks leave so that I had 3 (4 with some swaps) weeks, then go back for 5 and have 3 (4 with some swaps) more – this is the advantage to working shift work I suppose. So while I may feel in a creative slump right at the moment, I know I’m slogging through and that the end is in sight and the flow will return soon.

Happy Book Birthday To Me

I set myself a couple of goals this year, one was to get back on stage (a couple of weeks ago the show I was in finished it’s run) and I wanted to get a book published. I have now hit that goal as well. Yesterday/today, depending on time and where you are in the world, my new book Origins and Legacies went live on both Amazon Kindle and Kobo platforms. Reaching my goals feels so good.

This book is actually a collection of short stories set in the world I created for my first series. See for me sometimes I get to the end of a book and wonder what happens to the characters later on down the track. The beauty with writing the book yourself is you have the opportunity to answer that question, if the characters like you enough to keep talking to you that is.

I already had one story, The She Wolf and the Dragon, I wrote because I needed to know what happened between book two and book three of my series, and I kind of thought I might be able to use it someday, if I ever got big enough to be able to do bonus stuff or even a Patreon account of some sort.

Then Evayn came back and told me I wasn’t done with her yet. Sure mostly this was when I was working on the second series set in that world, but quite a way in the future and with a whole bunch of different people. Yep Evayn stuck herself into that story, which then led me to changing the story, making it bigger and more diverse. This is a story I am still working on. With her back in my head several stories came into the world and I really like the way they turned out.

Also I think most writers have characters they particularly like, for me they were Quinn, my werewolf spy guy. His origin story surprised me a little, particularly when it became intwined with my she-wolf, but then, I’m not the sort of writer who plans, I think I’ve said that before.

The bottom line is, I’m super happy with the way this collection turned out. Feel free to use this collection as a tester for my series and buy the lot, I will be forever grateful.

Adding More to my Plate

So my 14 year old came up with an awesome idea the other day, and believe me I’m not the sort to say it’s an awesome idea because my kid said it. In this case though I really believe it has a lot of potential. Thing is the last thing I need is to add a new project to my plate, let alone one in a different field, but here I am looking at show bibles, researching locations and how to write a pilot for a tv show.

While I’m doing this I’ve just finished the season of the show I was acting in, (yes I achieved my goal of getting back on stage this year) and am hip deep in editing book one, then maybe book two of my new series, as well as hassling my beta reader for feedback so I can get my book of short stories out this month when I’m on leave.

Thing is I’m not on leave yet and well I still have bills to pay, so if anyone knows of any rich benefactors who’d like to support a writer who is working two jobs as well as being a parent and an actor please let me know.

I figure it’s a good thing I thrive on challenge, I love creating, that simple fact has never been more clear than this year when I have struggled so much at work. Focusing on creative projects what ever they be, has kept me grounded, has made it so I am able to get up in the morning and keep moving forward.

And it really is a good idea, in the future you will look back on this post and remember the importance of it.

I will keep writing, there are just so many stories I have left to tell.

Hitting Goals Out of the Park

So my work isn’t even close to my happy place at the moment and hasn’t been for a while. I simply want to write. It’s what makes me happy.

I have almost finished my four weeks leave from work and I have hit my writing goals out of the park. To be honest I wasn’t sure I was going to get there. I wasn’t sure they were realistic and maybe I thought I should focus on something outside myself (though if I’m living in a created world don’t that count as outside myself?)

Thing is I figured getting my short stories done and to the point I could send them to a beta reader was a pretty realistic goal, considering the initial drafts had been done and they just needed a couple of rounds of editing, one just me and my pen and the other reading aloud to hubby, (which I guess makes him another beta reader).


Then just for fun he threw a spanner in the works when he said he wanted to know more about something, so I ended up writing a real short (not even 4000 words) which will end up in the collection as well.

I also have really been in the zone for the new series. Once I’d put all my previous draft into the computer and caught back up with all those characters, who by the way are soooooo different to those in the short stories, I just had to keep writing. The words flowed and every day I surpassed my goal of 2000 words, which I arbitrarily selected as it it fractionally more than the NaNo word count goal.

bat and baseball

Yesterday I hit a point where I thought I was close to the end and hoped I’d hit it today, but was worried I wouldn’t hit the right ballpark for the word count, I have a set number in my head for what I want my books to be.

Today it seemed to come slow at first, then it just poured, and I was a few pages shy at the end from where I hoped my first draft would be, but the thing is this is just my first draft.

The way I write means I don’t plan, I did try that once, just didn’t work for me. I write where my characters tell me they need to go. The first run through is with pen on paper that is how I create best. The advantage is my drafts can be hastily scrawled, as long as I can read my weird combination of writing and shorthand, and it doesn’t have to be close to correct spelling and absolute sense, some sections really are just the gist.

This means that though I was several pages short of my intended goal, I shouldn’t be too worried because I always flesh things out in the process of page to digital. And by the time it is all in a digital file I will know how much I need to add and more to the point the places where I need to add.

Tonight I worked out that this will be my seventh book. I have four already published, and now three in various stages heading towards that. This is a pretty good place to be in considering last year was the first year I hadn’t published since I put my first book out.

Here’s the really strange thing though, the other night, out of nowhere the start of book three came to me. My problem is I have to go back to work next week. Unless someone wants to me my patron…

Writing For Me

My last post I shared my new writing endeavour with Vocal and I want to continue on that.

I am finding this venture fun, also good for my writing ego because even though it isn’t a lot of money, I can see the reads and get paid as I go along. Paid not just for reads, but for engagement with others and posting.

Sure, I can’t deny it was the big payday that encouraged me to get involved and that didn’t happen, not surprising for a number of reasons. I have found over the years that my writing style isn’t necessarily the sort that wins competitions. This isn’t news to me, I’ve submitted to a bunch of comps over the years because there is an element of accomplishment and well of course acceptance that comes with such results, and I’ve never come anywhere.

Well except for the big one when I made the first cut for a novel comp. It was enough to give me the strength to keep going. Then of course I don’t really know how to stop. I feel all out of sorts if I don’t write.

Anyway moving on.

I’ve since published three fantasy novels check the first one out here, and feel free to buy the rest as well.

And a convention stories memoir of sorts here.

I am currently working on book two of my second series as book one sits in competition limbo. Meanwhile just to break things up I’ve found Vocal. It’s random competitions as writing prompts and the community make it a wonderful little side track for me. I am thoroughly enjoying it.

Of course I really wish I could get the thousands of reads others are getting and truth be told I have no real idea how to do that, but I’m still enjoying it. For me it has become something of a palate cleanser. I have my big projects but to clear my head on days I work or when I only have a little time, these projects are perfect, and it gave me the chance to write a legacy piece for my mother.

I tried other platforms but nothing seemed to really work. There were different reasons why, some offered just a place to put your work with limited engagement chances and certainly no financial incentive, others just aren’t the right sort of design for an author, works for other creatives just not so much for writers.

So I have found Vocal. It doesn’t mean I’m about to stop my other projects, especially being as I’m about to be on leave from work for a month, but I’m going to keep adding Vocal stuff to my writing regime. So far I’ve written short stories that are deep, thought provoking, some non-fiction topics and even stories that are hopefully entertaining. If you didn’t click the link at the top and would like to check my stuff out, do it here. If you like anything you read, heart it and I won’t say no to anyone who wants to tip me either.

Peace out and for all you writers, may the words keep flowing.

Writing For Me

So I wrote a short story to enter a competition and it got me onto a new platform. I’m enjoying it. I’ve even been paid a little. So this is my post that is going to have links to three of my short stories.

I have also added a poem and have another piece ready to go.

Please read, because any read adds to my tiny income.

What the…?

I could have sworn it wasn’t two months since I’d written here. Apparently I was wrong.

Still I have been very busy creatively, writing and writing whenever I get the chance. I finished the novel I wrote for NaNo, edited it and submitted it for a competition. I really wasn’t sure I would hit the deadline. But I did.

As far as work goes, I had been acting in a more senior position and so many people wanted me to apply for the job permanently, even my boss, thing is the flexibility of my normal job, and the less stress are so much better for me, especially as I have decided that this year my focus is on the creative.

To that end not only have I stepped back at work, but I have also started auditioning again. Like I said, focus on the creative.

So where am I writing wise, well one novel is in competition limbo, the short stories need their read aloud edit then they will be almost ready for publication, and I’ve started the second book in the new series.


I’ve decided that I will put some of my short stories and poetry out there. I would love for people to read and share the with other readers so please follow the link to my new Vocal Media account. My goal is to post at least a piece a week. It’s one way for me to hopefully widen my fan base.

NaNo Victory

I did it. I hit the 50 000 words.

So now I have a completed set of short stories that I am doing my last edit on before I give to a beta reader and read aloud to my hubby (it has proven to be a very useful form of editing and he had dyslexia so reading isn’t his thing).

I also have the first draft of the first book of my new series, which I’m thrilled to have written. It was a book I had started but gotten stuck on and had my breakthrough when I figured out what rewrite I needed to do. And it worked and I am really happy with the way it is beginning to form. Beginning because first draft is always very rough and unformed.

Then today just when I was getting ready to get stuck into editing mode and type my new book into a document, yes I write my first drafts by hand, I find it a better creative process for me, I new idea came and I got roughly 2000 words down for that.

All in all I have to say that creatively my leave time from work has been very productive.