February

February #writing #goals time to plan in some R&R

This months book related goal is to pick up the manuscript once again, it’s been untouched for a while, other things have taken focus. It is now time to read it start to finish, make notes and decide what still needs to be added.

I’ve been under the weather, sore throat, swollen eye and general tiredness maybe its time to start thinking about a writing break once I know what I want to happen with the book. I have over the last few years had several of these usually a long weekend. A cottage somewhere, an open fire, a glass or several of red wine, some walking in the country, a  pub meal, a home-cooked meal.  Sitting writing feeling creative.

 

Not really writing

Manuscript printed, just now need to decide when to start editing!

I’ve not written for some time, ok I have done this blog and a previous post but that’s not writing really is it?  I haven’t touched the book that I wrote since the start of November, I know what I need to so, or more what I decided to do. I would print it off and painstakingly go through it page by page and review it.

I printed it today ( it was one of today’s tasks as is to post a blog), its 286 A4 pages long, that’s some editing ahead of me.  I have also committed to several other work-related things this month, as I work for myself. The next two weeks could see me quite busy, but I need to find something to do during dry January I suppose.  I also need to start the mammoth task of improving the book, do I start now and fit it in? or do I leave it two weeks?

I have been setting weekly goals / daily goals in a journal with the last week 100% success rate.  I am about to plan my next week’s goals so now if the time to decide I suppose.

New Year Productivity

2018 Productivity and writing

Its been a while since my last post, especially after posting day after day for a while.  It’s over a month, I had taken a break from the book, the first initial draft had been done and then I did Nanowrimo, the book was put on hold and Christmas and New Year happened.

I asked a friend to have a read through of the draft, which I had already started to think to myself there were points that could be improved. I haven’t had all the feedback yet but the general gist was there were a few things that could be tweaked. Feedback is a gift.

The next step I need to print off in its entirety and read through, taking a book to get published being one of 2018 goals.

I took a different twist with regards my 2018 goals,  I decided to pay money for a notebook/ planner.  I saw one planner that looks really good but discovered it was only quarterly and expensive and only available in America, the minimum delivery charge made a 90-day journal far more expensive than a year journal for one I did get.

The journal I ended up with is called inspire now which I can say I am pleasantly pleased with.  Even if it is making me do daily tasks towards my goals.

As for my goals, that’s for another post as I have a couple more tasks to achieve today before I can get my reward of a can of diet coke, thanks to dry January.

NanoWriMo -Done

Done, 50,167 words and within the 30 days. It wasn’t however smooth writing as the graphs show. I started well and tailed off in the middle, as can be seen, forcing a few longer than planned writing sessions towards the end.

I didn’t plan anything prior to starting, other than I had a premise, the day magic came to the world.  I used a lot more characters than I have in previous books, which was a challenge to not lose them in all the words.  There were bits I didn’t like and when I go back to it some bits will be re-written I imagine, but that is the advantage of writing a quick draft. There are some bits that worked really well.  I planned this to be a trilogy from the beginning and I surprised myself in all the subplots that manifested themselves.  It’s in a good place to pick up and take forward, however now its time to pick back up the book I’ve written already and see where it leads me. Exciting times.

Hell hath no fury like the 13th day

In two days time, I should have written 25k words. Halfway point of the month for NaNoWriMo. I, however, have been burning the proverbial candle at both ends this weekend, which seems to be having its toll.

I am tracking my progress with Excel, I have dipped below the line for the last two days. I am also recording how many words above the daily target I am or in case of today how many behind I am.

writing target

Tommorrow its time to get back on track.

Progress, hispanic, mexican and names from the 1800’s

The laptop charger has now given up completely. I am currently word count wise a day ahead which is ok as I won’t it seems be writing on the train in the morming. This being written on my phone.

A 2nd replacement charger has been ordered. This is since July, what is it with the Microsoft Surface?

The book is coming along,I’m quite happy with my character names after googling top 100 boys and girls names with other elements such as Mexican, Hispanic, American, top names from 1800 it’s quite interesting, the are quite a few characters already and several twists and turns and the story is just on the first day. It’s nice having no time boundaries that I gave myself with the last story.

That I have shelved for a short period while I do nanowrimo, after recently reading a tip while editing . Once finished leave for a period before printing off and reading through cover to cover. You can make edit notes but don’t correct on the digital version. Ask your self questions. Does it flow ? Does it make sense? Are there bits that would help the story along.

Writing challenges broken equipment

I’m two days in on Nanowritemo and was I thought achieving good progress, words were flowing and I am ahead in the word counts. Then disaster.

My Microsoft surface has decided to stop charging. I’m hoping it’s just the charger but that was only replaced in July after the first one gave up. I’ve managed to balance it somehow at an angle on the floor. It’s charging but I can’t write anymore. I’m hoping it will have a charge for the morning.

This post is brought to you from my phone.

NaNoWriMo – The day the magic came

I have 98% finished my novel, it needs a few last edits. However, I wanted to do NaNoWriMo, which involves 1,666 words for the next 30 days. I have had an idea for a while and it is more the genre that I read, Fantasy.  It’s a rough draft then edited after the 30 days. So I am not going to apologise if there are some edits needed. I have been off today so able to spend some time in Ziferblat in Manchester writing. If you aren’t aware of Ziferblat its a pay as you go place to be creative, check out the link. I have so far managed 3439 words, so in theory, I am a day ahead, but I imagine I will need that at some point.

Anyway here is the opening chapter.

Chapter one – The day the magic came

Today, was the day when magic came to the world, not the Paul Daniels or David Blaine type magic but real bona fide magic. I suppose I am classed as a magician, but I am getting ahead of myself, I should start at the beginning.

It was the 1st of November 2017, which is ironic as the previous day being Halloween would have been more appropriate. I suppose somewhere in the world it might have been Halloween when it started. No one realised at first, or I didn’t. My name is Jake Arrow, I was nineteen when it started. I was studying History at University in York.  The day had started like many others I had made my way to my first lecture of the day. I had not noticed the graffiti with the words el flaminto scamore that had appeared since the previous day in several places around the city. I was half asleep as it had been a late night the previous evening, we’d completed a large assignment, and that was something to celebrate. As I walked I briefly checked my phone, there were no new messages from Nicky.  I had been seeing Nicky for over a year, but my going to University had put a strain on the relationship, and my life at university if I am honest. I had arranged to call her last night, but the flowing drinks put a stop to that. I had texted her several times at the end of the evening with my beer head on, not the best of ideas. I checked what was trending and scoffed, nearly at the top was #RonaldoMagic  and at the top #Realmagic. I wasn’t his biggest fan so didn’t look what was being said. I was tired, I had stayed up later than I should and didn’t sleep well.  That should have helped me get into my lecture of time being awake, it had the opposite effect, however.  I was late. As I approached the building my lecture was in, I noticed a crowd of students gathered around something or someone. I was unable to tell as there must have been I’d estimate fifty people. They were chatting away, and I heard a few murmors and gasps. I looked at my phone for the time. I was curious about the now growing swarm of people but not curious enough to be any later.

I tried to sneak in unseen, but that I realised wasn’t possible. The class was half full today. That I found weird. I slipped down beside a friend I was out with last night, Matthew.

He grinned at me and mouthed quietly “Real Magic eh.”

Not another one I thought, how good was it that everyone seemed to be talking about it, first Twitter and now Matthew and he didn’t even like football.

“Not seen it,” I answered.

The history tutor looked over in my direction.

Matthew looked aghast at me. “Really?” He exclaimed.

I shook my head. “You need to see it, really I mean. This will change the world.”

Bit melodramatic I thought. The tutor had stopped talking and was looking in our direction

“Late night was it lads? Or are you going on about the obviously ridiculous magic story?”

I tried my utmost to not make eye contact. It wasn’t my first time I had been late for this lecture, there own fault, why put a lecture on a Friday morning this early.

“It’s true Sir.,” someone from the front of the class said. I looked up it was Jeanne.

“Really?” the tutor said cynically.

“There are video’s out there” she responded.

“And that must mean its true.?” he answered her.

Was I the only one that didn’t know what the hell was going on a wondered. Matthew passed his phone to me. “Watch this, ” he said. It was a video on YouTube, his headphone was still plugged in. I discretely put one in the ear away from my tutor. He was having a conversation with Jeanette at the front of the class.

I pressed play. That was the moment my life changed.

 

Writing, blogging, and Reading, oh and coffee

After the previous glorious sunrises of the last two days, today is dull. The sun has not shown its face, the wind is howling by the windows. I haven’t like the previous days gone out. I have done something new today.

I made fresh coffee in the metal pots I discovered in the cupboard of the holiday cottage, stocked up, switched on the electric blanket and opened the laptop. I have been trawling through wordpress.com/tags/writing.  I have discovered such a wondrous community, with varying degrees of ability but all people taking the time to write. I have read tips and gained valuable knowledge which will make my blog better. I have read moving stories of peoples real lives, short inspiring stories, people with amazing gifts for words. I have followed people, wanting to find out more as they post. Will this be a burden on my time I wonder? I have been up hours and just spent time immersing myself in the writing world, this is the time I don’t often have. Even less so with NaNoWriMo around the corner, but I feel finding it and not carrying on would be a loss.

I constrained myself to a post a day, I didn’t need to. If you have something to say, say it, shout it, write it.   I have also dropped the [XX] number from the posts, it seems no one does that.