Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Tuesday Choice Words

Thinking a Career by Steven Pressfield talks about the existence of your 'career-in-potential'.

From Blog to Book: An Interview with Author Rachael Herron discusses whether a blog is right for you and how it can enhance your writing.

Everything is Fiction posted by Keith Ridgway on the New Yorker site talks about how the writing process doesn't get any easier with practice (and publication).

A Right Fit: Navigating the World of Literary Agents written by Michael Bourne, a staff writer for The Millions site describes his journey to find an agent.

Making the most of ideas: Part IV - Blindsides, gaps and spinoffs from the Magical Writing site continues the 'making the most of ideas' series.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

The Next Big Thing: Week 10

This post has been created as part of the author event 'The Next Big Thing'. The lovely Zoe Brooks was the one who tagged me so thank you, Zoe. The Next Big Thing is an ongoing process, hence the 'Week 10' in the title.  Within the rules of this blogging event is the requirement to answer ten questions about your current work in progress. So, here goes.

What is the working title of your book?

Haven Falling.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

This is a difficult one to answer because the original idea, born decades ago, was completely different from the one I have now. What is the same are the basic characters. It started out as a Tolkien-esque fantasy about the need to join two halves that were once whole and has finished up being a futuristic fantasy about magic, robots and joining two parts of a society that have been wrongfully torn apart.

What genre does your book fall under?


Which actors would you choose to play your charcters in a movie rendition?

This has changed from time to time, especially as the characters have developed in ways that I didn't expect but:

Steven Haven - James McAvoy
Winters - Sean Bean
Nigel Locke - Nicholas Hoult
Daniel Moran - Ian McKellen
Eleanor Palmer - Judi Dench
Hartley Keg - Brian Blessed

I'm undecided about Isabelle, Mariana and the darkling.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Steve Haven inherits his uncle's corporation, is attacked, rescued and dragged into an unknown world of magic all in the space of 24 hours- as Mondays go, it's interesting.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I'd like to go down the route of traditional publishing, hence with representation by an agency.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Still working on it but due to be finished within the next couple of weeks. It's been a long haul from the original concept but in this format, it's taken me about three years.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I don't really like comparing my work to anyone else's because, to paraphrase Audrey Hepburn, I'd rather be a first rate version of myself than a second rate version of someone else.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

If I look back to the original idea, I have absolutely no idea where it all came from. In its current form though, I'd say my favourite film 'Blade Runner' had some influence on the world in the book, or rather the look of it. Inspiration can be fleeting, mysteriously leaving you with a gem.

What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?

This is the first of a trilogy - three individual stories but with an over-riding story arc that will hopefully surprise the reader and make them look back on what they've read with fresh eyes. I plan to create a world that encapsulates all the novels I write (not only the trilogy) - a world where magic exists, shadows live and help can come in the strangest of forms.


So there you have it. Now it's time to tag five writers to pass this on to. Here goes.

Kelly Hashway
Rebecca Woodhead
Iain Broome
Sue Ann Bowling
Stacy Green

Please do have a look at their sites.

Rules of The Next Big Thing

  • Use this format for your post.
  • Answer the ten questions about your current work in progress.
  • Tag five other writers/bloggers and add their links so we can hop over and meet them.

Ten Interview Questions for The Next Big Thing
  • What is the working title of your book?
  • Where did the idea come from for the book?
  • What genre does your  book fall under?
  • Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
  • What is the one-sentence synopsis of your  book?
  • Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
  • How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
  • What other  books would you compare this story to within your genre?
  • Who or what inspired you to write this book?
  • What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?

Include the link of who tagged you and this explanation for the people you tag.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Tuesday Choice Words

Why Are We Wired for Story? from Writer Unboxed asks what a reader really looks for in a story.

Make me turn the page, I dare you! by John G Hartness from Magical Words discusses compelling beginnings.

Should writers rethink butt in chair mentality? from Suzannah at Write It Sideways discusses how our writerly lifestyle can affect our health.

Work on another part of your story from Writerly Life talks about how to get over a writing stumbling block.

Making the most of ideas, part III from Magical Words discusses the fear of being scooped.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Tuesday Choice Words

Finding the Unfamiliar Phrase from Magical Words discusses word play.

The 22 rules of storytelling, according to Pixar on the 109 site is a fun, informative article.

Making the Most of Ideas, part 1 and part 2 on the Magical Words site discusses what to do when inspiration strikes.

What's Love Got to Do with It? by David Boyne on the Author Magazine site is a wonderful interview with the late Ray Bradbury.

Monday, 13 August 2012

The Sound of Inspiration

Have I told you that I like to write to the sound of, well, silence? I also like to be alone which is why most of my writing is done while my children are at school. This means that the summer holidays can play hell with my writing routine and my sleep allowance because during those six weeks, I snatch evening hours to write. Without those times of silence in the morning and early afternoon, my brain finds it difficult to centre itself to the place I need to be to write.

However before the sumptuous silence sets in, I like to get my creative juices flowing by playing one or two favourite songs. Here is my inspirational playlist this summer.

Earthquake by Labrinth

Tron Legacy by Daft Punk

True Colours by Cyndi Lauper

Here comes the rain by Eurthymics

David Guetta Without You ft. Usher

David Guetta and Kelly Rowland - When Love Takes Over

Inspired by Suz Williams

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Tuesday Choice Words

Throw a Wrench in the Works from Writerly Life talks about adding conflict and complications to your story.

How to write with insight comes from a site and a writer that I've only just discovered - Sarah Selecky. It discusses how curiosity can produce some of the best writing but can also be uncomfortable for writers.

Calling All Inspiration Hunters by Danielle LaPorte talks about hunting out inspiration rather than just waiting for it to come to us.

Getting Things Done and the Mindful Productivity Ninja from Think Productive is all about coping with lizard brain. Confused? Read this article to find out more.

Steve Pressfield is fast becoming another writing hero of mine. His latest blog post Inside the All Is Lost Moment is another great read.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Parenting your writing

My parents on the left with me as a baby.
When my mother died (my father had passed away a few years before that), I felt cast adrift. I was married with a family of my own but I had always looked to my parents as an example to guide me. It felt as if they had been on the rung above me on the ladder and now they had stepped off, leaving me to be at the top. If I'm honest, it took me a couple of years to become accepting of, if not comfortable with, my rung on the family ladder but I got there. I realised that to be happy with my rung, I had to own it and become my own parent.

In writing, we can sometimes lose our connection with what we create. Perhaps we're embarrassed to share it with others. Maybe we think we're not talented enough to call ourselves a 'writer'. We despair at the lack of time in our lives to write or how everything else seems to be more important (common excuses here are our children, the housework and getting enough sleep). We leave our creations in the corner where we write, never showing them the light of day. Is it then any wonder that others do not take our writing aspirations seriously?

Step up to your rung. Own it. Shout and wave your arms on it. To succeed in this journey of writing, we must be the parent to our creations and our intent. Nobody else will get the words down on the paper. Nobody else will put our words out there. Certainly nobody else will take us seriously if we do not have respect for our own writing. Be the parent. Love your darlings and do what ultimately all parents have to do. Set them free.