Just over two weeks or so ago, I blatantly claimed that I was allowing myself some grace and not participating in National Novel Writing Month this year, as I already had too much on my plate.
Not only am I trying to revamp my blog, in the mist of launching a second, focusing on my new YouTube channel for writers and finishing off my novel whilst going through the beta reader feedback for it; but there’s a baby’s first birthday and Christmas to prepare for, clients eager for their work and a never ending though gratefully sought after reading list to tackle….so why on earth would I add in the extra stress of writing a novel in a month?
I think we can all agree it’s not a good idea to overload oneself and with NaNoWriMo being notorious for writer’s burnout, it’s probably best to just cheer other writers on from the side lines, right?
2020 seems to have been an un-darned, stinky sock made patchwork quilt of a year – stale, yet oddly nostalgic, making people long for a normality that already seems like distant childhood…
And for the publishing community this is as true as for anywhere else.
With more hours at home we have seen a rise in indie authors this year, for better or worse, and for the kindle and self-publishing market especially, this has meant a flood of new authors vying for our attention.
But what does this mean for traditional publishing or more importantly, what does this mean for you? As an upcoming prospective author, how are you going to stand out and make sure your light shines brighter then everyone else’s? After all, there used to be times and strategies that you could put into place…and yet 2020 seems to be just a free for all.
I love October. It’s one of my favorite times of year; when the trees are all starting to turn to rich, fiery reds and oranges, the weather can be brisk, yet chill enough to appreciate a hot cup of tea after a long walk, and above all, it holds the best of holidays at its end – Halloween.
But as a writer, I have another reason to love October, however other literary heads and I know it by another name…Preptober.
In recent years, the month preceding NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) has become affectionately tagged as the preparation or planning month prior to that where hopefully aspiring authors attempt to produce a 50,000 word manuscript in just 30 days.
I’ve been toying with the idea of starting my own writing channel on YouTube for some time now and with the current situation bringing back-burning projects to the forefront, I have decided that there is no better time than the present.
I previously attempted to start my channel whilst I was pregnant, but with hideous morning sickness I didn’t even want to talk to people in the physical world, my on-screen presence blurred into a distant dream. I was too icky to be on camera.
But now I am only semi icky and so this past week I got the camera back out again and am pleased to announce my first (though actually, it would be my second…) video on YouTube, going live on Wednesday.Read More »
As writers, it is very easy to get into a routine when tackling larger projects such as re-accruing assignments and novels. In fact, it is one of the smartest things we can do – to train our subconscious minds to work on command and thus prevent the detractions that are inevitable when working from home.
And yet, whilst home offices and writing routines are a Godsend for our productivity, they can also become somewhat stale over a long period of time. It’s inevitable really. Eventually, all of us need to re-schedule a meeting with our muse and shake things up a bit so as to get out of a slump or take away the eventual boredom of living every day like the last.
I recently wrote a post about my experiences with a teacher in High School who seemed hell-bent on giving me bad advice regarding my dream of being a writer. I must say I have been blown away by the private messages I have since received from my readers, many of which have also been from teachers, saying how much you all believe in my decision to power through the criticism and go for gold. Can I just say a huge thank you to everyone who has written to me, as your encouragement means more to me then I can ever put into words!
But this was not why I wrote the post. As heartfelt and wondrous as your comments are (and believe me, I am truly grateful!) my aim with The teacher that told me ‘no’! was to inspire others by my story. There seems to be a common stigma in our world that writers have to be linguistic and grammatical geniuses and always know exactly where every comma goes. And it simply isn’t true. As much as I have found negative responses to my dyslexia, I have also found that people are more likely to ask me how to spell something because I am a writer.Read More »
I’d like to think I am not the sort of person to hold a grudge but even I must confess to not always being a saint about this. In fact, there is a grudge I have been holding on to – for over 16 years now…
But in many ways, this grudge is a good thing. It has fuelled me through hard times and given me enough determination to overcome obstacles and fight the battle for my dreams.
Back when I was just 12 years old I used to take support classes for my dyslexia. Now here’s the confession no writer ever wants to make – my thirteenth birthday was coming up and I still could not read or write!Read More »
A few years ago I was introduced to the concept of speed writing, whereby you set a timer for five minutes and just write. This is a great idea for when you are low on time, stuck or procrastinating on a project as it gets you moving. It is also proven to keep you going, as studies have shown that just doing five minutes of a task will get us in the ‘flow’ of doing and we will be more likely to continue until the task is done.
Back when I heard about this five-minute method I also heard about an application that forced a writer to write, by threatening to delete their current progress should they stop typing for more than five seconds. Scary I know.
Unfortunately, I forgot what the website was called and never did find it. Alas, though I liked the concept as a motivation tool I was never able to give it ago.
When I first told people I wanted to be a writer I received one of two reactions. The first was The Scoffer – ‘why on earth would you want to do that?’ The second, the Misconstrued Enabler – ‘of course, you want to be a writer, it’s easy and you get to wear pajamas all day!’
Of course, as writers, we know that both of these responses are ridiculous, wrong and based on uneducated naivety. Having said that, before we leap to our own defenses we must also acknowledge that some of what they say is true.Read More »
The biggest lie I tell myself as an aspiring writer is this – I don’t have time to write.
As with all things in life, the jobs we enjoy and want to do are always pushed to the back of the to-do list for one reason or another. Either some other menial task such as the washing up or folding the laundry takes president. Or, another classic, being too tired after a day at work and just needing to steal a few moments to chill out and relax.