Posts Tagged ‘muse’

On a break…

Posted: July 8, 2014 in Blog post
Tags: , , , , , , ,

So I’m away at the moment. Staying with family on the beach and the weather right now is glorious.
I had no expectation of getting any writing done this week because I knew things could be busy. So when the kids were happy in the surf and I had the writing itch it was a bonus.
It’s proof enough that it can’t be switched off and inspiration should be harnessed. Without the pressure of necessity my writing flowed much more naturally. I didn’t have to write so I could write what I wanted to.
I accomplished a lot. I got many words on the page and when I read it back I was happy 🙂
The feeling of satisfaction at achieving something doesn’t go away. I like to know those words are out of me. It’s only a first draft of course but now I have something to shape. The foundation is in place.
I say foundation but I do have another section of this piece done already. So even on a break I have more words under my belt. Every word counts. I’ve taken a step forward.
Be proud. Be positive. And when you can, enjoy inspiration in the sun…oh, and wear sunscreen :p

Good luck on your adventures,

xSx

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purple spark

 

Let’s take some to write about process. Ok, first thing is first, I need to put in a small disclaimer. All writers are different. While there may be similarities in working practice that does not mean that all writers work in the same way. I’m saying that to hopefully prevent a debate on my own practice! I don’t proclaim myself an expert, all I can do is share my thoughts.
So unless you’ve never heard of me before, or this is your first visit, I’ll say again Explicit Instruction is now out and available for purchase here. Writers can work on several projects simultaneously, priorities have to be set, but just because you’re writing/editing/publishing one novel doesn’t mean our imaginations shut down. It’s not as simple as, “That’s my latest novel out, what’s next?” I’m already toward the end of my next project!
To write about my whole process would lead to a novel sized blog, we’re obviously not going to do that. So we select one part, let’s start at the beginning.
The Spark.
Loosely there are two kinds of writer, the planner and the pantser. More often than not those methods will occasionally blend or overlap. But every story starts with an idea. Sometimes it’s a line of dialogue, sometimes it’s something we see in our day-to-day lives that has us smiling to ourselves in the most inappropriate of situations. But every story starts with an idea.
It’s not as simple to say that the idea creates the novel. It doesn’t. Not even close. There are ways that writers can encourage ideas. It can get to the point where you literally have to sit at your computer, snap your fingers and say, “Be creative – now!” There are times you have to force an idea but once you have it the process usually becomes more organic. But we’ll get to that another day.
If you’re a fledgling or aspiring writer it’s important to recognise these moments. The flicker of inspiration can be brief. But when it strikes you have to mentally acknowledge it. Writer’s block is a different thing. Motivation in the midst of writing is different. However, inspiration doesn’t strike with a lightening bolt or flash neon in front of your eyes. It doesn’t stand up and declare itself. Often The Spark is something intangible. I’ve experienced The Spark while standing in the street, I’ve had it while looking at art, I’ve had it in the middle of conversation about a completely unrelated issue. I’ve had it in the middle of the night while I’m “sleeping”.
So what does it look like? How do you recognise it? If it doesn’t declare itself how do we know if we’ve experienced it? Simple. Any thought that creates an emotional response can be channeled into our work.
You need an example? Ok, you’re walking down the street, late in the evening, and you see a bunch of teenagers walking down toward you in a gang. Maybe you’re wary, your sixth sense prickles, you experience fear. There, right there, you can use that emotion to create, maybe the heroine is walking down the street, enveloped by the gang and mugged. Inspiration. Or maybe the teenagers laugh and lark around until they see an elderly person struggling with their shopping, then the gang run over and help. Again, this could be used as inspiration, maybe in that gang one member stands out, maybe a relationship of trust develops and the teenager becomes like a surrogate child, maybe they end up inheriting the elderly person’s unknown millions. Maybe one of the teenagers falls over and is mocked, so maybe your hero and heroine meet when one falls at the feet of the other.
This is of course a very simplistic and general concept. But it’s about recognising that moment and finding a way to tailor it to lead to another moment in the plot and another. Whether you sit down and write immediately, or take notes and flesh out the story, every novel begins with an idea.
It doesn’t have to be something physical. Maybe it is merely a thought in your head, maybe a “what if…” scenario. It could come from anywhere, but you have to recognise it.
This is the boring bit. You’ll have heard it a million times before. But it’s impossible to stress this enough. If you have an idea, no matter how huge, or how tiny – write it down! Get yourself a good quality notebook, something durable enough that it will last a lifetime. You’ll go back to it. I promise you. You’ll never remember it. Write The Spark down. Put as much detail as you can, and if you can, spend some time with The Spark. In writing down The Spark you’ll find yourself having another idea, one leads to the next. No matter how disparate or uncertain it seems, write down everything that comes into your mind.
So always remember, there are ideas everywhere, and all it takes is experience. Find the idea, write it down, the rest is a dawdle… ok, so maybe it’s not. But without The Spark there is no novel. You need The Spark. Locate it. Record it. And you’re on your way…

Good luck on your adventures,

xSx

We all have it in us...

We all have it in us…

There aren’t enough hours in the day. Shoehorning in the time to do all of the things that we need to do is hard enough, let alone trying to fit in the things we want to do.
We’re back! Might not mean much to most of you; my son and I have been away this week but we’re home now. My work schedule over the weekend is jam packed, simultaneously I’ll be trying to get my inspiration onto paper. Every once in a while inspiration hits, sometimes I enjoy it in the moment then mentally move on. Other times one idea leads to another and before you know it I’ve got half a novel in my head – and half a novel is all it takes.
So while parenting, running my business, and editing Rivals ON AIR (it has a name now), I am getting my inspiration onto paper. The funny thing is the idea struck me a while ago and I’ve been musing on it. But during the long drive home I pondered it. I don’t need a lot of brainpower for staying on the road it seems, lol.
I get so much enjoyment out of writing that the extra work isn’t a chore for me. I often feel for Val my Vaio because she gets less rest than I do. From the moment I wake up until the moment I go to bed my computer is on. It’s never off. I at least get pleasure from my writing, the computer can’t say the same thing; though being inanimate probably helps.
Anyway, let’s talk about Rivals ON AIR. I’m so pleased I’ve decided on the title. Oddly, naming things can be the most difficult part of the process. The title has to be catchy, and if possible weave into the story in more than one way. This one does it for me. I can’t wait for you all to get to know Hunter and Annie, I hope you all grow to love them as I do.
A story can be expanded and trimmed. Ideas incorporated whilst others are thrown out. The process is dynamic, it has to be organic (as Annie would say) and getting the details straight in the course of the story is of course paramount. So many times I’ve got an idea into my head and I rush off to get it out of me but find myself stumbling over the first hurdle… who are these people?
I’m not sure how many of you are writers and so I wouldn’t want to be teaching you how to suck eggs (lovely expression, eh?) so suffice to say that not getting the details hammered out early can lead to delays further down the line.
As far as marketing goes I’m at a bit of an impasse because I just don’t have the time to do it properly. Then again, even if I did have the time I probably wouldn’t have the money. One avenue that I’ve used with both Mistake Me Not and XY Factor I’ve decided isn’t worth the money – two avenues actually but I called the first a dud a while ago.
Truthfully, I do what I can but as all indie writers know the curse of the review – or rather lack thereof – can make or break us. Readers don’t review very often and so without the word of others to encourage would-be readers of our work we’re a bit stuck. I can tell you how great my novel is until I’m blue in the face but I wrote it so I’m ever so slightly biased.
So I trundle on. I’ll get the boring stuff out the way and get Rivals ON AIR released when I can though there’s no real rush. I’m excited about it but I’m the only one – and I’ve read it! Hehe.
Have fun y’all, don’t work too hard, and remember to always make time for fun!

Have fun on your adventures,

xSx