Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Writer's Voyage

While doing some housekeeping on my internet favourites (you know, all those interesting sites and articles you bookmark so you can come back to read them, but never do) and stumbled across this delightful article from author Kathy Carmichael. It really struck a chord with me.

http://www.kathycarmichael.com/articles-and-seminars/articles-and-workshops/writing-articles/writers-voyage/

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Word Count Widget

I finally found a working widget to display my word counts. You can access it here: http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/adadding-a-word-counter-widget 

The only glitch with this one is that you need to manually change the html code to update your stats. Also to change the colours, you'll need to look up colour codes (which you can find here) and rewrite the html code yourself, but at least Blogger makes that relatively easy. 

I used to use the one at Language is a Virus but it no longer allows me to change colours, and I really don't fancy a bright blue widget on my lovely red blog page. Many of the word counters out there are designed specifically for Nanowrimo and writing a novel in 30 days - which doesn't work the rest of the year. So if anyone out there is good at writing html code, there's an opening here for you to design something special ...

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Accountability

A little over a year ago a good friend of mine got some wonderful feedback and a partial request from the Feel the Heat contest. I'll admit, I was envious. She'd got her foot in the door at Richmond. I wasn't so envious a year later when she still hadn't sent in that requested partial. In fact, I threatened to kick her butt for wasting such a great opportunity.

I entered the 2009 Presents contest and also got great feedback. There was no way I was going to let this opportunity slip past in the same way. I had a plan, and you witnessed it here on this blog: I would write a complete new novel by the end of March, have my crit partners look over it in April, and send off that requested partial absolutely no later than May.

Do I need to point out that it's nearly May and I've only just started Chapter Two? I can blame the day job (which deserves a fair share of the blame but sadly not all) but I have to admit the fault is largely mine. I now understand what my friend went through last year. Paralysis. Avoidance. Drowning one's sorrows in a tub of chocolate and pretending everything's okay.

Well it's not okay. I've wasted five good months. No more! From now on I plan to be accountable. I plan to upload a word counter to this blog so the whole world (well Blogland at least) can whip my butt into gear if I start slacking again. This novel will be written. My previous novel will be edited. I will submit!

By the way, can anyone recommend a good word counter widget?

Monday, April 12, 2010

Another week, another film shoot

I've been in television advertising nearly twelve years and I've never known a year like this one. I've already had more shoot days than I get in the average year and it's barely April. On the plus side, it means good money (as and when I start to see any of it) but on the down side, my writing is taking a beating. I'm either too busy, too tired or too braindead to write.

I suspect that my day job is soaring thanks to a combination of the tail end of the recession and the uncertainty of the imminent football world cup. While many industries are gearing for peak business during the mad month of the world cup, mine is expecting a virtual shutdown - or maybe that's just wishful thinking on my part.

I'm praying for a quiet winter so I can get some serious down time (aka writing time). There are just so many stories in my head all waiting to be told, and if I don't get to write them all, my head might just explode ...

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Killing Time

I've finally sent off my revisions to my editor at The Wild Rose Press. I've submitted two short stories to the local Essentials magazine / Mills & Boon contest. So what's next?

What should be next is my requested partial to Richmond. As the deadline I'd set myself to write a whole new novel has already come and gone, with nothing to show for it, I've now decided to revise the manuscript I subbed to the RNA's New Writers' Scheme last year and send that in ... but I just can't seem to get into that either.

It's as though I have an itch beneath the skin. I can't reach it, but neither can I focus on anything, even at the day job. I'm on edge all the time and accomplishing nothing - unless messing around on Twitter can be counted as an achievement?

Anyone have any suggestions on how I can get my focus back?