Ellfaenian Journals, Writing journey

Writer’s Block – all I needed was Dragons.

My experience with this month’s Camp Nanowrimo has been disasterous; the beginning was hopeful but it plummeted into a slump with minimal words written, leading to a full blown case of Writer’s Block. I had time and space since WW, aka my husband the writer’s widower, was away but I couldn’t settle; procrastination kicked in and my ability to focus on The Ellfaenian Journals ceased. The more I tried, the less the words and ideas came. I was contemplating giving up. Until now. My daughter came home wanting to watch the film How to train a dragon so we snuggled down with nibbles and the dogs to cuddle.  The journals may not be about dragons but they play a key part in my MC’s childhood and the film would have appealed to her. It did its magic. By immersing myself in a film she would love I was able to hear her voice again.  Scenes were unleashed and ideas ready to burst on to the screen in my mind like Toothless the night fury’s flame.

Happy writing!

 

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Writing journey

Writing, failure and new beginnings.

November started with hope and enthusiasm as I joined hundreds of thousands of writers globally to write for NaNoWriMo but it ended in failure. Even my goal to write  10,000 words faltered and then hurtled to a full stop. If NaNoWriMo had to write a school report it would say “she could do better if she applied herself” before handing me a sticker declaring “NaNoWriMo 2017 loser”.

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I could come up with a pageful of excuses and reasons but they do not change the truth.  I failed. I wasn’t committed enough to write despite life’s hurdles,  strong enough to fight through the fear of failure and just write the scenes in my head, however crap the words were but most of all I was not assertive enough to implement my plan of retreating to my room undisturbed to write. As I saw other writers word count grow and welfies appear showing their commitment to the cause, mine crumbled with shame. This sealed my fate because a mind full of “I should be doing …” leaves no room for creativity.
On the plus side words were written, new ideas were formed and old ones developed. The  shame of not achieving my daily target made me analyse my commitment to The Ellfaenian Journals, writing and acheiving my dream of being a published author. The desire is stronger than ever. When life tugged me away from my writing, it flared with rage as restrictions were placed on it.  This forced me to lay the foundations with family to allow me in the future to work undisturbed. Writer’s block and procrastination  diverted  my mind to the other side of being an author – marketing and promoting.

Writers can no longer hide, write and appear blinking from a study with a manuscript in hand to forward to a publisher before hiding again. They are expected to promote their own work especially debut authors. This requires becoming social media saffy, networking and battling with strong introvert tendencies and talk to people.
When I wasn’t writing I was learning. YouTube videos, articles and Pinterst are my new best friends. I now understand  what a SEO is, set up a domain homeserver and SSL. I was sucked into the complicated world of WordPress and I discovered WordPress themes and widgets are a perfect for procrastinators. You can play for hours.
This month I failed NaNoWriMo but I have gained vital knowledge to move forward with a new site, improved enthusiasm and stronger foundations to achieve my goal.
My new site is kakenzie.com Please follow the link as it will no longer show on WordPress reader. Potentially I lose all my followers for the desire more freedom and flexibility and I would hate to lose you so hop over. Thank you.
I have rambled enough and it is time to write. Christmas is days away and there is nothing like twinkling lights, festive atmosphere to sow new seeds of ideas.

How did your NaNoWriMo go?

Happy writing!

Hope you like the new site, let me know suggestions welcome.

Writing journey

Writing, failure and new beginnings.

I am a NaNoWriMo loser! While writers everywhere celebrate their commitment, dedication to their work and receive their rewards I am having a cup of tea vowing I will do better next year.

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This was originally posted on my old version of this blog yesterday 30th Nov 2017:

Writing, failure and new beginnings.

November started with hope and enthusiasm as I joined hundreds  of thousands of writers globally to write for NaNoWriMo but it ended in failure. Even my goal to write to 10000 words faltered and then hurtled to a full stop. If NaNoWriMo had to write a school report it would say “she could do better if she applied herself” before handing me a sticker declaring ” NaNoWriMo 2017 loser”.

#NaNoWriMoloser #writing

I could come up with a pageful of excuses and reasons but they do not change the truth.  I failed. I wasn’t committed enough to write despite life’s hurdles,  strong enough to fight through the fear of failure and just write the scenes in my head, however crap the words were but most of all, I was not assertive enough to implement my plan of retreating to my room undisturbed to write. As I saw other writers word count grow and welfies appear showing their commitment to the cause, mine crumbled with shame. This sealed my fate because a mind full of “I should be doing …” leaves no room for creativity.

On the plus side words were written, new ideas were formed and old ones developed. The  shame of not achieving my daily target made me analyse my commitment to The Ellfaenian Journals, writing and acheiving my dream of being a published author. The desire is stronger than ever. When life tugged me away from my writing, it flared with rage as restrictions were placed on it.  This forced me to lay the foundations with family to allow me in the future to work undisturbed. Writer’s block and procrastination  diverted  my mind to the other side of being an author – marketing and promoting.

Writers can no longer hide, write and appear blinking from a study with a manuscript in hand to forward to a publisher before hiding again. They are expected to promote their own work especially debut authors. This requires becoming social media saffy, networking and battling with strong introvert tendencies and talk to people.

When I wasn’t writing I was learning. YouTube videos, articles and Pinterest are my new best friends. I now understand what a SEO is, set up a domain homeserver and SSL. I was sucked into the complicated world of WordPress and I discovered WordPress themes and widgets are a perfect for procrastinators. You can play for hours.

This month I failed NaNoWriMo but I have gained vital knowledge to move forward with a new site, improved enthusiasm and stronger foundations to achieve my goal.

My new site is kakenzie.com Please follow the link as it will no longer show on WordPress reader. Potentially I lose all my followers for the desire more freedom and flexibility and I would hate to lose you so hop over. Thank you.

I have rambled enough and it is time to write. Christmas is days away and there is nothing like twinkling lights, festive atmosphere to sow new seeds of ideas.

How did your NaNoWriMo go?

Happy writing.

Hope you like the new site, let me know suggestions welcome.

 

Writing journey

Controlling an unorganized mind in time for NaNoWriMo 

I am disorganised in everything I do. No matter how many blogs I read, planners I download or notebooks I have, my WIP remains in disarray. Currently, I use Scrivener with my outline set out on the corkboard and several scenes written but I also have several unfinished notebooks, Evernote, Google Docs and endless scraps of paper with ideas, scenes and random sentences dotted around the house. As my family said if I found all the words I have written over the years I would have more than the target of 90000 words for my WIP instead of my measly 30000. Many 1000s have been lost including some from NaNoWriMo last year so it is time to get organized and rein in my grasshopper brain. I could be a lost cause. I am sure I am, after all, I can not make a cup of tea without the use of timers to remind me what I am doing; waiting for the teabag to do its thing always gives my imagination time to slip into the world of Ellfaen.

It is time for Project Organisation if I have any chance of completing my New Years resolution.

So far:

  • I have deleted 100GB from my old creaky laptop in the hope it will last another November. I didn’t even know it was capable of holding that much.
  • Dug out my plot board and gathered  all the post-it notes which have fallen off.
  • Collected all my notebooks and paper together.
  • Had an afternoon snooze while my laptop decided to update. It has only been 2 hours and on 25%

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  • Bought more notebooks with the intention of having a dedicated on for Ellfaenian Journals with separate places for Amber, Mathilde and Violet.*
  • Downloaded a NaNOWriMo booklet and monthly planner from Megg
  • Explored NaNoWriMo resources by Eva.
  • Bought more bags of Yorkshire tea to keep me going.

      Are you taking part this year and how are your preparations going?

      Happy Writing!

      * I am unsure why I need more notebooks apart from the desire to own something pretty and the notion my mind clings to that a writer has to write with a pen and paper. It refuses to accept typing is readily available and is always legible unlike my writing most of the time. Deciphering my handwriting to type up later is time consuming and in NanoWriMo time means more words.

      Writing journey

      The Curse of the Abandoned Writer’s Muse

      ElsieLast time I introduced the world to Elsie, my  Dr Marten stomping fairy muse. She has been busy sharing ideas and gossip at silly o’clock in this morning. One of thoughts was what happens when a writer’s muse gets ignored. Do the ideas get flitted away to someone else more reciprocal to them, do they vanish in a puff of smoke or does the fairy responsible for them become despondent and depressed? Maybe the muse gives up and looks for attention elsewhere leading them into the criminal  shady underground world of the fairies where alcohol and drug addiction is rife. When their assigned artist/writer finally takes note their muse is battered, bruised and shared ideas are half remembered, distorted, scary and on the verge of madness or not there at all. The writer fumes he or she has writer’s block leading them to become despondent and depressed so a vicious circle commences.

      November is coming and with it NanoWriMo. Old writers, new ones beginning their journey and those who have lost their way all open their minds and become enthused with the idea of getting words down on paper or screen. At the same time, muses everywhere get themselves ready.  Old ones iron out their wrinkled wings, despondent ones dust themselves off and patch themselves up as much as possible to give it one final chance while new ones nervously set off to find their creative mind to work with.

      J M Barrie said you have to believe in fairies or they will die. Maybe he is right and knew something about these muse fairies. If you have an idea jot it down. If it keeps coming back, develop it into something. Keep your muse happy, believe in them, your ideas and let them flourish.

      Happy Writing!

      Illustration by Debra McFarlane. For inspiration for your own fairy muse visit

      https://www.instagram.com/debimcfarlane/

      http://www.debramcfarlane.co.uk/

      https://www.patreon.com/DebraMcFarlane

       

      Writing journey

      Mission accomplished! 

      August is here and Camp NanoWriMo is over but unlike other challenges I have set myself, this  time I can shout “I did it”. I limped past my target of 10,000 words and I have a sticker to prove it.

      I feel rather silly,  feeling so proud of an image of a winner sticker; smiling like a 5 year old awarded a gold star for work well done but achieving  something purely for me is rare. It feels uplifting and I am inspired to do more. This is handy as I have only skimmed the surface of scenes my WIP needs to become a fully fledged draft. A target definately helps to focus and write on days when it is easy to say “I will do more tomorrow” while a little squeaky  voice reminds me that “tomorrow never comes.” Hopefully, the writing habit is here to stay. After all,  10,000 words a month equals 120,000 words a year which is a novel and more. On days, I couldn’t the feeling of frustration grew as my words and thoughts longed to be released. Even gobbledygook needs to be written now, it seems,  just in case one sentence proves useful in the future. Is this a temporary phase or is an addiction creeping in? Watch this space to find out.

      So hello August and happy writing!

      Kate

      Writing journey

      NanoWriMo and more

      More than half way through Camp NanoWriMo and unbelievably I am ahead of my target of 10, 000 words. To some it is a teeny target but in recent months getting any words written has been a challenge but now, I am writing daily, even if a few words. It helps so much because my imagination has been released; bringing new ideas, stronger characters and different scenarios even when I am away from the PC. I wake up excited of the scenes I have seen and become frustrated if the opportunity is not there to scribble things down in the detail I would like. Maybe I am a writer after all.

      Last week, my husband finally turned our tiny spare room into a study for me. It still has the bed for when visitors stay but it also has an old oak bureau my husband has fixed. Having my own space with things to hand which do not need packing away at dinner or bed time is bliss especially when you are surrounded by books. I am feeling grateful and lucky.

      One of my characters in my WIP resides in Whitby so as a family we tootled over the moors, enjoying the fantastic scenery to visit this atmospheric seaside town with its cobbled streets, unique shops, wonderful book shop* and scrummy fish and chips. The perfect house and shop for my character wasn’t found but my imagination has developed one just for her. If I could bring one place out of my head into reality, it would have to be Willow’s shop nestled in an unknown street of Whitby. I would spend a fortune so maybe it is wise to leave it there.

      As my story develops and other characters visit there I will have to go there again for research. After all, it would a shame not too.

       

      *when this book is finished, it would be my dream to do a book signing in The Whitby Bookshop. It may be small but it has a wonderful character with its spiral staircase, helpful staff and lots of bookworm goodies as well as the stars of shop – the books!

       

      Happy writing