NanoWriMo, Writing journey

Research, Motivation and of course a Cup of Tea

For those who follow or know me it is no secret my MC, Willow like me loves tea. However, unlike me, Willow has taken her love of this delicious drink to the extreme and has studied, worked with, and lives for the perfect brew.

As I research her backstory and personality I’ve found myself longing to walk amongst the rows of tea bushes in Shenzhen, Guangdong. Wishing I could visit Tong Xin Tea House, who I discovered on Instagram.

View this post on Instagram

On April 28, Jake and I set out from 8 a.m. in Shenzhen and arrived at Wuyi Mountain safely at 9 p.m. The 13-hour long journey was very hard but very happy. On the morning of 29, we went to the hotel to find J who arrived at Wuyi Mountain in advance. We started our journey in Wuyi Mountain. We tasted Bian Rou in the morning, drove into my tea garden and tea factory for about an hour, and arrived at the tea factory with Ja. Ke and J visited our tea garden and tea factory. In the afternoon, we went to the mountain to make tea. Everything was ready. After tasting Rou Gui and Da Hong Pao in 2013, the sky suddenly began to rain heavily. Finally, three of us were soaked into soup chickens. The heavy rain did not affect our mood. We walked happily in the rain and enjoyed the magical power of nature. We drove to Tongmuguan on April 30 at 10:00 a.m. It took us two hours to get to Tongmuguan from downtown. The road was rugged. We arrived at Tongmuguan at 12:00 p.m. smoothly and safely. We enjoyed the delicious food in the mountains at noon. After lunch, we went to Tongmuguan's brother's tea garden and the tea factory to visit the process of black tea picking and making. The scenery along the way was beautiful. We picked tea in the tea mountain at 1200 meters above sea level. Ye is very hard, every leaf is hard-won, return to Wuyishan city in the afternoon, every day is very full, J, will return to Shenzhen tomorrow, my trip with Jake is continuing. 🙏 .#looseleaftea#teaddict#gongfucha#chinatea#teaset#gongfutea#tetitas#breakfast #organic #cascara #cake #cat #dress#morning#morningtea#green#cupoftea #flowers #茶道 #sencha#shenzhen #lovetea #yixing #tealove #茶 #oolongtea #tea #chinesetea #koreanceramics

A post shared by Tea of Life 🍵 (@tong_xin_she) on

There are many inspirational places I would like to visit and enjoy the full sensory experience rather than using photos or videos as prompts. Some are not as far-flung as India or Nashville, Tennessee where the unique High Garden Tea House and Potion Parlour are; I would love to visit Twinings at The Strand which has been there for 300 years or have afternoon tea at Betty’s Tea Room in Harrogate.

twinings-1176476_1920

The discovery of an UK Tea Academy, where you can train to be a tea Sommelier, made my nerves tingle with excitement. What an experience that would be and would give me a deeper insight into Willow’s world.

drop-3046350_1920

The possibilities where her story could go are endless and I want to explore them all but then with a click of a mouse, reality bites. The ability to research to that depth requires funds only a fledgling penniless duvet dwelling paperback writer can dream of and as it stands, is it crucial to this WIP to experience them first hand? Probably not but it has given me the motivation to keep writing, and to keep dreaming of success because one day if I decide to write about a character on safari in Africa, I may just be able to experience it first-hand.

Time for a cup of tea made in the pot and write.

Happy writing!

Love

Kate Kenzie's Blog

P.S. All these places are now firmly etched on my bucket list and if they get ticked off, you will be the first to know.

Writing journey

April is here and so is Camp NaNoWriMo

2-WriterWebBadge.png

April has begun and so has Camp NaNoWriMo. After my success in November (I am still in shock I won) I know it will help me finish this first draft if I am determined enough and learn from my mistakes to avoid any more health issues. Going over my manuscript I am over two-thirds of the way to writing those elusive words The End. One character’s perspective needs to be threaded in and connective scenes need to be written. I am itching to edit which has allowed procrastination set in. A NaNoWriMo boost with the support, accountability and encouragement from The Fiction Cafe Writers and RNA will hopefully help me get back on track. I need to stop my mind slipping to things I can’t control, social media and the news and enjoy the escape to Whitby and the imaginary shop The Enchanted Emporium.

Current word count: 65,180

Aim by the end of April:  to finish the first draft

Realistically I want to write 10000 words or 30 hours of writing and research.

Happy Writing!

Love

Kate Kenzie's Blog

 

Writing journey

Time for Yorkshire Nature Walks

I was planning a post about the importance of HEA (happy ever after) books but after seeing a drunken or drugged Dragon twist a scene from Willow’s story into a different genre this morning, I changed my mind. Who knows what gobbledegook it would come up with?

The nice weather has meant I can go for a whizz on my scooter with the dogs, soak up sun and appreciate the beauty of the Yorkshire countryside. The calm allows the mind to focus on ideas and nature provides the inspiration for both of my WIP. Photos of flowers are taken for the mood board for Willow’s witches garden and trees for Amber’s Elfaen.

If you would like to have sneak previews of these when they happen follow me on Instagram here

I love trees and nature but many places aren’t accessible on wheels so if you see anything inspirational or quirky I would love to be tagged into any posts you see.

Happy writing and enjoy the sunshine

Love

Writing journey

Hello March, Where Did February Go?

 

 

March has arrived. The daffodils are blooming and there are signs of green on the hedgerows. Looking back it has been more than a month since my last proper post. I know February  is a short month but the speed it flew by was ridiculous. The last few weeks have been devoted to self-care because I discovered ignoring tingling in your fingers and arms, which began during NaNoWriMo, was not a good idea. It only leads to your arms feeling like you are attached to an electricity pylon every time you pick up a pen or type. Prevention is better than cure. Has it enforced abstinence from writing helped? Not at all, when dystonia likes to cause problems it does not relent easily. Not being able to type on demand is frustrating because I have been trapped in an endless scenario of perfectly worded sentences flowing in my head without a release except for a few unsatisfactory notes. It is true you don’t realise the joy of something until it is gone. Writing group meetings and cake have also been skipped. I have not been a happy writer.

In desperation Dragon Anywhere, the voice recognition app was tried again. My first attempt of using it was discussed here. The short story dictated was encouragingly accurate. Thanks to some wonderful people who I will be forever grateful, the full version of Dragon has flown on to my laptop. Words have been added to my MS word count;  a new way of writing has begun. The software needs training, laptop teething problems need solving and new neural pathways need to be formed but I have renewed determination to finish both my WIPs. Dystonia will not win.

Current Word Counts

The Ellfanian Journals: 48, 106

Willow’s Tale: 62,999

How has your month been?

Happy writing!

Love

Kate Kenzie's Blog

 

 

 

writing with a chronic illness
Writing journey

Writing With Chronic Illness – Madeleine Dyer’s advice

 

 

Today I am sharing a wonderful guest post written by Madeleine Dyer, author of Untamed, for the Book Lovers Blog. As a writer with a chronic illness her advice is invaluable. I wish I had read it earlier so I would not have beaten myself up so much for struggling to write after an epic November and times fatigue takes over so no words are added to my WIP. I am terrible at comparing myself to other writers, they achieve more than I despite working full time, and looking after young children but I need to remember having a chronic illness can be a full time job and if I don’t practise self care nothing will be achieved.

 

 

In this month’s Writing Magazine a reader wrote into the helpline section for advice on writing with chronic fatigue. Her friends suggested maybe she should stop writing. I hope she continues to write because it helps with mental health and is a wonderful form of escapism. I also hope she finds her tribe to help her on her writing journey as I have. The writing community on social media especially Twitter and FaceBook is strong and mainly supportive. Many writers have health conditions which impact their lives and are willing to share tips and advice. I may work on my WIP and stories alone but writing is no longer an insular hobby. There is always someone to talk to, bounce ideas off or laugh with online. I am grateful for Turtlewriters on Twitter whose quotes and encouragement always help on bad days and the Fiction Cafe Writers. If it was not for them I would not have known about the RNA and the New Writers Scheme.

Writers can be found using the following hashtags #spooniewriters #writingcommunity #FictionCafeWriters #turtlewriters #5amwritersclub (If you are awake then)

If you have a chronic illness how do pace yourself with writing or do you have any tips? Feel free to share below.

Thank you Madeline for sharing your thoughts.

Love

Kate Kenzie's Blog

 

bookloversblog

Hi guys! I’m so excited about today’s post, because I actually didn’t write it (except this introduction)! As you can see from the title at the top, this is my first ever guest post for BookLoversBlog, a super exciting step for me and one that I hope can continue because I love getting to connect with other bloggers and writers and have them share their experiences, there is such a wide world of writers out there with different experiences to mine and I want to make sure that is reflected in this feature. 

Which brings me quite nicely onto today’s topic. Madeline Dyer is a YA writer, who has several chronic illnesses, so when she suggested writing a guest post about her experiences of writing with chronic illness, I thought it was a great idea. I hope that any of my followers who are also writers with chronic illness find…

View original post 1,396 more words

All about Books, Writing journey

The Pigeonhole: A New Reading Experience

I recently signed up to The Pigeonhole, described on the website as a book club in your pocket. It offers a selection of new releases from top publishers and classics. The new Sophie Kinsella book is an option which I am looking forward to if I get chosen to read it.  The books  are released in sections and you read along with other readers. More on how it works can be found here

The Pigeonhole a new reading experience
First stave of The Flower Girls

I saw an advert for it on social media and not only did the blurb of The Flower Girls by Alice Clark-Platts look good, the promise of a free book drew me in.  I am on a strict book budget this year. The more I read about the idea of the business the more I realised it could also help with my aim of reading more classic books. The big tomes, even on Kindle, are daunting but this way the book is broken down into staves or instalments. It reminded me of the Dickensian scenes in The man who invented Christmas where readers eagerly wait for the next part of the story out side the book shop. If it was good enough then, maybe the updated version will be good now.

I started reading The Flower Girls this week and so far I am enjoying the experience. As an insomniac it is exciting to receive the next part at midnight. It adds to the suspense of the thriller because you are left dangling mid story everyday and you are eager to know more. On the flip side, this could be frustrating depending on your outlook but the whole book is available to binge read a month once all the staves have been sent out or those on the read at leisure bookshelf can be read quickly. With crime or suspense novels, I also have a bad habit of reading the last page to discover who did it or who is alive, this curbs that temptation.

Alongside the story, there are options to interact with readers – share opinions of characters or scenes and writing style. I think this will come into its own with the classic books but I am enjoying the Q and A with the author which is also available.

One bonus I was not expecting was that as a procrastinator with words to write, this way of reading increases my productivity because I can not fall into the trap of reading just one more page or chapter. I am reluctant to start new book to read concurrently so it is a win-win situation.

Have you tried it? Let me know your thoughts below.

Love