Wednesday, 9 December 2009

If you're struggling for inspiration, take a step away from your writing

I have just entered another competition, this time on the Writelink website. My story is called "Secret Santa", and I wrote it after sitting with my laptop on my knee, and challenging myself to write, edit and send a story off in under an hour. I think it was 45 minutes in the end. Please feel free to have a look at it, and there are some other great stories on the site too. If you're struggling to get that festive feeling, they may just help.

I constantly have thoughts in my head of the competitions I want to enter. They're all bookmarked in a folder, and I keep looking at them every now and again and wondering which one to tackle first.

It's only when I am doing something mundane that the real ideas come to me. I was ironing last night, and the best part of a story jumped into my head. I immediately stopped ironing and opened up my laptop. Previous ideas have come to me during showers, and when driving up the road (away from the house, naturally).

If you are struggling for plot ideas, perhaps it is time to think about doing something completely different; go for a walk or do something totally unrelated to writing. You never know what may happen.

Monday, 23 November 2009

What's in a Name?

When I was trying to think of a name for my blog, I had absolutely no ideas for the first half an hour. Only when I was doing the washing up did the name jump into my head. Most of my ideas jump into my head at random moments, but that is another post altogether.

I like the way the name I chose can be taken in different ways. Giving people a choice, as well as the ability to come to their own conclusion, means that you have some respect for your reader in my humble opinon.

I wondered whether the use of the word "writer" was strictly true, but by the very submission of this post, I am indeed writing. Have I been published? Yes I have, but not for a long time. Or, do you consider being included in a competition on the internet as being published? In a way, I suppose it is. I have been writing ever since that childhood poem was published. I have just not been doing so seriously, as life has taken me down different paths.

I have three young children and a husband, and all the background jobs to do that go with that package. Writing is something that, for me, has always been a dream. Many times I opened up a Word file, started a novel, and then left it for a few weeks or even months. Later, I reopened the file, decided to "give up" and deleted everything. I wish I had not done that now, but we all make decisions and live with the results.

In October this year, I read a Tweet on Twitter from an author who I have a lot of respect for. She said she had signed up for NaNoWriMo. I had a look at their website and was not sure what to do. But on 31st October, when I was doing something totally unrelated, an idea for a story formed in my head. The next day, I signed up and started writing like I have never done before.

At the beginning of 2009, I had not heard of Twitter, or NaNoWriMo, and the thought of a blog did not exist in my head. But now, I am listed on Twitter by some kind people under "Writing" and "Writers". There is no way to describe how that makes me feel. I have a competition entry out on the web, and people have been asking me where they can read more of my work. Originally, I wasn't even going to share the link to it in case people didn't like it! I am now on target to finish a Novel during November and it is in a genre that I never dreamed of writing in previously.

Maybe I AM a writer, after all.

Discovering Blogland

So, at last I have started a blog after thinking about it for a few months. A few people have said I should, and who am I to argue? I'm totally unaware of what I am meant to be doing so this is going to be a bit of an experiment for a while.

I will keep this short as I just wanted to say a quick hello in case anyone stumbles across this page. It may take me a while to get fully up to speed.