Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Concentrate one one story, or flit between several?

I decided to do Camp NaNoWriMo this month and set off with my sci-fi YA story quite happily. Two days later I found I wanted to write something different - a short story from a prompt 'better than divorce'. A few days after that, work got in the way and I found myself writing a feature about a trip to Cardiff. Then I got a great idea for another mystery/romance story that I had to start getting down on paper.

The upshot is that at the end of this month I seem to have half a dozen partly formed stories and nothing finished. It's quite frustrating.

Question is, should I just plug on with one until I finish it and then move onto the next, or keep flitting on the expectation that at some point I will finish at least one of the stories? If I had specific inspiration for one story I would work on it now, but I don't, and I've learned not to rely on inspiration to keep me writing!

Monday, 11 June 2012

Review: The Map of Time by Felix J. Palma

It takes a skilful author to mix together Jack the Ripper, HG Wells and Joseph Merrick the Elephant Man, but this clever time travel story manages to do all that and add in elements of romance and mystery along the way.
The tale follows Andrew’s quest to find a way to travel back in time to save his lover, who was killed by Jack the Ripper. The story segues effortlessly through African villages, the hidden world of Victorian toilet paper salesmen, and a strange pink world between time, while still, somehow, remaining believable. 

Sometimes poignant, occasionally gruesome, and always entertaining, with a nostalgic feel to the narrative, this would be a great book to take away on holiday.
  • RRP £12.99
  • Published by HarperCollins
  • Available from various places including Amazon

Monday, 4 June 2012

Too tired to write, but don't worry...

I haven't posted in two weeks. This is terrible, I'm sorry.

Actually I've been swamped by work. I'm a journalist and in the last couple of weeks we've had the Olympic torch come through, and then all the Diamond Jubilee events, and I've been getting home feeling like the last thing I want to do is to sit in front of a computer again and write.

I've signed up for Camp NaNoWriMo this month, so I've got a goal to aim for, but I'm having one of those insecure writer moments, where I don't like the things I'm writing, I can't seem to find time to write, and when I do I can't seem to get the pictures in my head out on to the page properly.

Then I got an email from Flash Fiction Chronicles with its weekly pep talk from Aubrey Hirsch. In a nutshell, it suggested to prioritize your writing; learn what kind of writer you are; set goals; eliminate your excuses; accept failures and celebrate your successes.

The most helpful bit of advice was the bit about accepting failures - not letting one bad day throw off the whole thing, not worrying about “making up for lost time,” and not letting guilt cause you to lose more time.

The full pep talk is here. While you read it, I'm off to start my 1,667 words for the day. If I get into the story, I might even write more and get back on track. But it I don't, I'm not going to let it make me feel guilty or stressed.