Thursday, 30 December 2010

Random ramblings

Think I might be finally coming down with that flu bug that's flying around though having said that I actually feel better than I did half an hour ago so maybe not - who knows. Maybe I'm just looking to peg the blame for my inactivity on something.
I have a couple of assignments that need to be completed but I just can't seem to put the metaphoric pen to paper. Luckily for me the deadline isn't 'til next week so hopefully I'll have got my head in gear by then. On top of that I really and I mean REALLY want to get back on with BTL and NMBK.
I have a bit of a dilemma with the first one because I have polished it to death but I am wondering if it would be better and more commercial (seamless reference to my last post) if I changed it - pretty much completely. I had some interest from an agent earlier in the year but they wanted the whole thing changing so that I came at it from a different angle so at the moment I am toying with giving myself 3 months to try and change it and see what the outcome is. Do you know what? I wasn't actually toying with that until I wrote it without really thinking about it but now I think that it is something that I will do. The only issue now is finding the time to do it.
So the old year is almost done which I always find very sad but the new one is yet to come and that always gives me a lovely feeling of expectation. Anything is possible just before a new year. having said that "anything" invariably involves some bad stuff too so lets hold off the celebrations just yet.
I thought that I would share the best and the worst of 2010 with you and the owrst came very easily - I lost my mother-in-law very suddenly. She just didn't wake up one morning and that was horrible. At the moment I can't think of anything worse that happened in 2010. The best however is proving a bit more difficult. Oh come on woman - something really good must ahave happened this year. Why is it then that I really can't recall it at the moment? I think that is probably a reflection of the society that we ;ive in. No can't think of the best thing that happened to me in 2010 but if any of you can remember me telling you about something good can you please let me know.
Okay so I am rambling now so I will shut up.
Anyway - here's to a happy New Year everyone.

Monday, 27 December 2010

A little thought

I'm starting this post with a bit of trepidation because I really don't want anyone to get the wrong idea about why I am writing it. The aim of it is to pass a comment, a reflection if you will and is definitly not an attempt to get you kind folks out there to say nice things about BTL. I am not trying to provoke flattery from anyone.
Okay so now we've establishe dthat maybe I should get on with it.
Himself (best husband in the whole world) bought me a book for Christmas that a film I have been known to enjoy on occasions was based on. I will not be naming names here but suffice to say that the film falls into the "romcom" category and the book therefore is "chick-lit." His research had told him that the book was much better than the film and contained "a lot more." Okay then, methinks, I'll give this a go, a little light entertainment over the festive period.
Okay so lets cut to the chase and get to the heart of the matter. As a piece of writing, well how can I say this, its not that good. Mrs Wilkinson my old English teacher would be shivering in a corner if one of us had handed it in. No hang on that's not fair because obviously the writing is grammatically correct etc etc but to me it just doesn't seem to flow. Its all a bit stilted - he said she said but how on earth is anyone feeling sort of thing.
But here is an author who has written and published more than one book and sold the film rights to one of them so she must be doing somthing right. And she is - she is commercial.
Which brings me back to my thoughts on BTL and my writing in general - maybe its just not commercial enough.
Just a thought - and here's another one.
Can we stop eating yet?

Thursday, 23 December 2010


I have half a cup of tea left and am feeling reflective. It must be that time of year again.
Its been a funny old year and not all the ha ha variety.
Writing wise, the ability to write fiction seems to have deserted me but that's okay as I've been trying my hand at more journalistic/feature type stuff which is what I wanted to do for a living when I left school so to a certain extent I'm living the dream.
I only had one short story published this year but all that I have out there are two stories with Jill Finlay and one to an American market that I think may have gone bust. They were all sent in September and while I haven't given up hope on them, they are at the back of my mind and will be a bonus if anything comes of them.
Non fiction wise I had my first ever travel feature commissioned by a magazine this year which was quickly followed by another. Yay (I thought) I'm on a roll - only to be informed by the editor that they are changing style and have enough material in stock to see them through to that change. She said that she would be in touch when they had more work for me but so far I haven't heard anything. I also had several pieces in the local paper mainly around work and what was happening there - sort of promotional stuff - which gave me great satisfaction. Latterly I have been writing for an American outlet and that seems to be going okay but doesn't leave a lot of time for the book that has gone back into the drawer.
However I have to say that I am more than happy with the way that the writing year hss turned out. It didn't take the direction that I hoped it would at the beginning of the year but life has a way of doing that. Maybe I'll look back on what I wrote when I was feeling reflective last year and see just what I did hope the year would turn out like.
I don't know what I want from 2011 other than we get through it in one piece. Writing will be what it is and I'll enjoy the ride most of the time (hopefully). I'm going to keep doing what I'm doing and hopefully make more time to work on the book because I have too much time and effort invested in that to just give up because I haven't found anyone who believes in it as much as I do - yet.
Anyway, the tea is now gone and I have presents to wrap and stuff do do in the kitchen so I will wish you all a very Merry Christmas. I'm hoping to have all my men with me on Saturday and that will make me happy - I hope that something makes you happy too.
One final thing which I wasn't sure I was going to add but once I've typed it its said and it will have to stay said.
Lou, I miss you, we all miss you and you are the one red bauble amongst the silver ones on my Christmas tree.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

A bit naughty

I'm not going to apologise for not being around for ages because it sounds insincere when I say it all the time. I am though.
i have been busy writing non fiction with a bit of success which is good for the morale and the pocket. However, do you know what? I have done something very naughty. No - calm down its nothing like that - I've decided to give myself the day off - or at least the morning. Usually on my day off during the past few weeks I have written an article or researched one but today I just can't seem to concentrate so I have decided that I'm taking some time off. I'm not sure if I'll manage a full day because like I said previously this non fiction lark is a bit of an addiction at the moment but I'm definitly having the morning.
I am going to make a cake, some curried parsnip soup (for lunch after I've walked the dog) and try to find a trashy Christmas movie to watch which I may well sleep through.
Sounds like a plan to me.
Oh and while I'm doing it I will be keeping my fingers crossed that these dinner plate sized snow flakes that are falling from the sky don't decide to stick because I was hoping to travel south on Sunday to deliver Christmas presents.
Oh and by the way - I had a rejected story returned through th epost the other day - ya boo hiss!

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Apologies from a bad blogger

I feel like I have been a very bad blogger recently and I feel the need to explain myself.
I have developed a bit of addiction. Luckily for me its just to writing. In the hours before bed time when I used to answer emails and blog I now write, in the morning with breakfast when I used to do the same I write. Its good because I enjoy it but it does mean that I have forgotten to do the other things that I enjoy sometimes.
I am concentrating on non fiction these days as some of you may know and I love the discipline of it. I really enjoy the research. I'm not saying that I don't enjoy fiction anymore just that I am concentrating on other stuff at the moment.
Anyway, enough of that.
We're now enduring our 7th day of heavy snow and frankly I am heratily sick of it. I didn't get to work on Monday and had a struggle to get there on Tuesday and Wednesday. Today is a day off but I have just heard that the person covering for me hasn't got in and so the place is closed. I haven't had the nerve to ring my boss and tell him yet. I'm looking forward to walking the dog this afternoon though because it is very pretty and he loves it. It is very funny. Having said that if it could all have disappeared by the morning that would be fab.