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Stifled writing and a look into my brain! (WARNING – it is not for the faint-hearted)

People who write can often get bogged down with the concept of finding that great idea which will earn them money and quite often when they do this, they lose themselves and in some cases, even lose the love for writing itself.

I am at fault of doing this as much as anyone, particularly in the past five years, this is because financially I am suffering to the extent that birthdays and Christmases have been disappointing and not as traditional as I am accustomed to.  In fact recently I found an old Christmas shopping list, which included food, presents, games and décor and basic normal food to last for two weeks over the festive period so we can focus on more family time and that list was five pages long with two sections on each page; this year it was only 3 pages long with only one section as when I write in an excited state, my letters get bigger than my usual handwriting – which is a bizarre idiosyncrasy that I have.  My lists are quite methodical, I will list food from Tesco, Food from ASDA and food from other places separately within the list; I will list where to buy certain presents too and for whom, which shops, so we kind of plan a shopping map in our minds whenever we go to town.  Along with this list will be a separate length of what kinds of decorations or traditional Christmas stuff we need, such as crackers from B&M and purple bauble at Wilko, you get the idea?  We usually do a massive buffet on an old pasting table in our living room and fill it to the brim with food and drinks as well as the coffee table, because Christmas Eve is the only time in the year where we can guarantee an influx of visitors and we like to feed them – this year it is a no go and I am embarrassed that this may come across as too inhospitable compared to what they are used to, as everyone usually got a bag of food to take with them either for snacks at home that night or jars of homemade stuff, which we just can’t afford to do this year.

I hate pleading poverty, but lately it is getting me to a state of breaking down.  I went for advice on my ESA benefits two weeks ago to a lady who is very kind and runs a charity, I was so embarrassed detailing my struggles to her as she was helping me fill out the forms that I was shaking and my teeth were chattering so badly with the humiliation of it all.  She thought I was freezing cold, but I told her, it’s just that I am so embarrassed by it all and she said that it was OK, but it really isn’t though is it?

Usually I am very good at being calm and self-composed, despite anxiety issues, but lately I just can’t keep it together, I am struggling to hide behind a façade like my normal self would.  Most people can’t tell that I have anxiety issues because I masked it so well, but lately I break out in tears over the smallest of things and what is worse is that I am getting short tempered with it, with people I feel are cold or unfeeling and I have this awful feeling that I will say something out of character at my next medical which will make me lose the benefit.  I am very scared about it.

If I could get a job I would, but no one is going to employ someone with the health issues I have.  I did struggle a few years to get a job, before it got too bad seven years ago.  All of this makes me try to push myself to create something just to get out of this mess, but it isn’t working, it is stunting my creative growth badly because I am not writing what I really want anymore.  I am writing the lesser ideas I have which are the most popular amongst my nearest and dearest and unfortunately what I love to write about, they hate immensely.

What I like writing about are dystopian stories similar to Mad Max, I am Legend and Tank Girl.  I enjoy writing about vampires and their sired offspring as I call them and histories as a massive saga dating back to the Ancient Sumerians and contemporary times too, how they live and how they lost loved ones.  I enjoy writing inane pun infested comedy fantasies where you meet mermaids and trolls with a very Monty Python meets Discworld air to them and I enjoy writing horror that touches taboo subjects.

According to those who are in the know, the only type of book up there I have mentioned that they can barely stomach is the comedy fantasy, not my main love of in depth vampire soap operas and dystopian tribal warfare.

Yes I love my fantasy comedies, but whenever I discuss my writing with those who are privy to them, they always get more excited about any updates on that genre than anything else and I feel if I don’t write this genre more than the others, I am failing to please this specific audience.  I am one of these people who find it really hard to talk to people about my work, those I do are precious to my motivation, if I don’t talk about my work, I can’t do the work.  But unfortunately my discussion circle seems far too niche and not entirely me.

I used to mix and mingle my genres a lot and had a wider circle I trusted to talk about them to, usually as dinner party discussions but since moving to Warwickshire, I don’t have that anymore.  London is a very different place, with very different people with mind-sets very different to Rugby’s.

I have mentioned vampires and horror to people up here I thought I could trust with my writing, but they recoil or give sideways glances to those next to them and simply state “Oh, right, not my cup of tea really”; Then I share my fantasy comedy ideas and they feel that fantasy is strictly for children, surely I should write something nicer for them?  Not drunken elves and mermaids who rip eyes out and swear profusely with such corny puns as well!

Apparently my personality must reflect my work and because I don’t lark around like some tomfool jokester all the time and I seem a pretty calm deadpan person in real life, I can’t be taken seriously in comedy surely?  Won’t I come across as some kind of fake?

Now that hurts, but it has been said to me before and I find it amusing that comedy must be serious… really?  I wonder how we all laugh at serious comedy!  Should we laugh at flippant tragedy then?  I don’t know what kind of world I have tripped into a hole of, but it is certainly quite different here to where I am from, I can tell you!

I think if I was to walk up to my favourite British comedian of today and say “Darling, you are not taking your comedy seriously” he would choke laughing and crying at how stupid that sounds.

*passes a dictionary to said people and points to the word “comedy” for reference*

So, though I am currently in quandary over my work, my main quander is this – “how can I develop a trusting relationship with people online so that they can become my beta readers and I can learn to trust the online community with my plans and outlines”? 

I’m not sure I can.  I am very protective of what I share with people because I have often had entire ideas stolen and published behind my back and that someone became very successful with my ideas and have not produced work since I eliminated them from my social circle a decade ago.

I have thought that maybe signing up to a free creative writing course with the OU would help me discuss work and improve my skills with an online tutor?  But not sure if that is really what I want – improved skills are always good, but not sure if I want straight laced professional opinions which are bias regardless of genre and content.

Meanwhile, I have been thinking about just writing whatever, whenever and go back to my scatty ways that were long lost a decade ago.  Paul tried to organise me too much I think?  Tried to get me to focus too much that I lost my way; I don’t really have a way.  I am higgledy-piggledy and mentally a mess when creating.  Paul often said if a hypnotist was to delve into my mind for just five minutes he would run out of the room screaming “get me out here, she is completely insane, she is such a mess, she is so confusing, help me, help me…. And oh, pass the paracetamol that gave me a headache!”

Why the drama?  Because I will have seven documents up at the same time, one is a horror about a cat, two are vampire novels concentrating on two entirely different characters, one is a comedy fantasy with tiny people, and one is a dystopian story based on a religious concept of the apocalypse and angels, the other document is writing notes to eventually put into any work in the future, along with research papers and notes, scribbled papers and notes off the computer, and Wikipedia up on the internet with another internet page looking for the history of Thracian warfare.  If that is not enough, I am also meddling with playlists on Amazon music flipping through them depending on which scene and novel I am working on in those few seconds, whilst daydreaming about food and what it might be like if I was the size of a peanut in my garden.

You get the idea?  That’s my brain in just five minutes.

I am like the dog who is in the garden playing fetch with you then all of a sudden I have ran away chasing squirrels, then coming back to you wondering where the ball is and oh look sausages!

With a mind like mine, it has been said by people before – is there any reason to wonder if I will ever find it possible to get anything finished?

I pass them some books I have indeed already finished and I do so quite proudly.  Then I announce, they are not for sale, they are not edited and they are not good enough.  The person looks through them, finds they do indeed need editing but are absolutely wonderful, why not publish them? 

Because they are mine!  Then I grab the books and hug them close to me with a snarl!

I am like this even with the art I paint too.

Thing is, there are ideas I do want to sell.  But I am scared that those private stories reveal too much about my inner workings.

I feel psychologically exposed, basically.  It brings about the kind of feeling in which I can only sit back and think, it would be better to be physically nakedly exposed than that, then Paul tells me to stop being weird and dramatic!

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Update November 2019 AKA I am still alive!

I didn’t continue Inktober from day 5 and I haven’t done anything towards NaNoWriMo this year either, my health has got quite bad in the past few weeks, for some reason or another I have developed something new where I am sleeping an average of 10 to 15 hours a day and when I am awake, I wished I was asleep and this is something strange for me, because I not a person who loves their bed (unless I am making love in it)!  I don’t find sleeping a productive venture, other than maintaining health (which I don’t have any more anyway).  I am living in constant pain too; painkillers aren’t cutting it anymore for me, not even the occasional co-codamol, I am having almost permanent nose bleeds and other strange bodily phenomena, such as the feeling that I have a glass splinter in my foot and my arms are going numb and losing strength at random unpredictable times.

My IBD markers have also risen and my rheumatic arthritis has decided to wake up again, it often goes away and comes back again, remission I think it’s called?

My depression had got better until last week I received a medical request which puts my ESA medical due around Christmas week again, just as I felt that Christmas might be financially impossible this year I get this as an added assurance, because I don’t think I will pass it this year due to the fact that my consultants are very laxed in actually giving me a name for some of the things that are wrong with me.  I knew my local NHS is struggling as it the NHS nationally, but yesterday on TV I finally learnt why my consultants are particularly lacking in their treatments of me – they are part of what the government consider the notorious Nuffield branch crisis.

I never heard of it before now.  I don’t really understand what it means, but there seems reason to be concerned according to the news I watched last night about being part of the Nuffield problem.

I don’t vouch any knowledge on the thing.

All I know is that someone advised me to take a certain person to my medical this year as it may help my claim, because I am a client of a specific charity and apparently this could give my claim some weight.  I just hope I don’t sink.

I haven’t been able to practise my recorder for a month either, because I have been getting a little chesty, I was expecting this, because every year between November and March I get bronchial issues – I have been given medication for asthma but the doctor declines calling me asthmatic, I don’t know what that is about, but there is no name for my breathing problems when I get them.  When they get really bad the doctors say I might need to stay in the hospital as I always seem to get bad enough that they feel I am borderline of pneumonia or pleurisy.  Hopefully that won’t happen this year; I am tired of the fact that I haven’t had a decent healthy Christmas in almost 7yrs.  It is starting to make an Ebenezer out of me. 

I haven’t written anything other than 9 poems since my last post and I don’t think I like them enough to share.  Some of them touch very delicate subjects.

I have also managed to list whilst in bed, all of the story ideas I have had had over the years and number them, 187, that is scary and I felt instantly depressed that more than half will likely never be started let alone finished.

I noticed that I shouldn’t really call myself a horror writer too, as most of my stories are comic fantasy or dystopian, I think all in all there are only 6 non-vampiric horror stories in the list, about 12 vampire stories in the list, but mostly comic fantasy.

I have an idea for a sequel of a top Broadway musical, but I know I wouldn’t rightfully be able to write it as it will be an infringement of copyright and it is a shame because I really think that this sequel would be amazing.  The musical has always been one of my favourites, Annie.  I love most musicals anyway, but that one is special to me as I remember watching it the first time when I came out of hospital for the first time aged 5.

I won’t say my plans, but if anyone needs a sequel to it, please let me know – I am not a dunce, I will know if you are of genuine sources or not.  I have often thought about writing a letter to the source of the musical or current copyright holders, but not sure when I will take the plunge – as I am embarrassed, because of my health I may not be able to deliver on a strict dead-line.

Another thing I need contact from is from anyone who knows how to get my Henry onto junior MasterChef, he really wants to be a chef when he grows up, he has decided – he also wants to do a baking marathon for Children in Need next year, but I have no idea how he can do that, I can’t afford to give him ingredients for 100k of cupcakes, ha-ha, he will be 10 at the time too.

Wasn’t it amazing what Rylan did as well this year?  Henry always thought the guy was awesome, but now he is inspired to do a 24 hour baking challenge because of it, I said he won’t be allowed he is too young!  So then he thought of a specific number of cakes – though he says they have to be gluten and lactose free so I can have a couple!  Isn’t that lovely?  He thinks of his mummy?

I don’t know if it is a sign, but I have nearly finished a novel, when I get the energy back to continue it I will have about three chapters to do before I consider it done and coupled with this, I have been getting dreams.  Those dreams are of me moving house, every night I am in a different house in a new dream, what is weird is I accidentally found a house that is identical to my dream in Derby with identical surroundings in the town, specific shops and maps, it has blown my mind away about how I found that.  Thing is, I don’t think I want to leave Rugby.    I think it’s a nice little town, the people know me well like I have always been here and it is really is in the centre of everything you need in the UK – an hour from London, 45 minutes from Birmingham, 90 minutes to Manchester, it’s just a great spot to be!

I have discovered after reading several books in bed over the weeks that one of my main problems creatively, is that I overthink things.  I play too many ideas into others and eventually lose their uniqueness, I have learned to let go.  I have learned that it is ok to repeat themes in my writing in order to make things more interesting in places, but also learned that various themes can be used only once and there shouldn’t be any regret.  I have also learned that mentally I use the excuse of not having much experience in anything in life as a way of holding me back from having a life.

I am on a big learning curve right now, my mentality is changing and it is growing me.  I am also changing on a personal level – I used to be a very meek and obedient person who was afraid to make people unhappy even at the expense of it making me unhappy, but that too has changed.  I have started to learn that if I am not happy with something I will tell that person and I will try to maintain kindness as I do, but ultimately I won’t suffer anymore, not for others, especially as it was never appreciated in the past or even recognised.  I do however insist that I maintain kindness as much as possible and maintain a positive attitude, I have an intolerance for misery still, that is innate within me and I think that is in part the reason behind why I am more of a comic/comedy writer.  I know this blog doesn’t show that, as my poetry is often very dark, but my stories, when I eventually release them for the world to see, will be quite light hearted and funny – well I hope so anyway.  My poetry may still be dark and bleak in a lot of respects, because it helps release what is soaking my insides up, bad things from the past, my deepest yearnings, my tears and fears, I have to release this emotional cancer somehow, don’t I?

I never intended to be a comedy writer, it just happened.  I always intended to be a horror writer but as funny as it sounds, writing horror is horrible and I don’t like to do it anymore.  I used to relish in making people scared and feel sick to the stomach, but only certain people and now they are gone from my life I realised how neurotic they made me and how horrid they were making me.  So now I only want to make people smile, laugh is even better, inspire would be a jewel, but I would be happy with a slight upturn of the mouth from my readers and nothing more if only to make the world a bit more brighter.

(was written on the 14th November but only just got around to copying it for this blog – I have not been well, in fact the whole house has had the flu this week on top of everything else).

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Inktober day 5

Sorry to say I am a little embarrassed by today’s inktober post, it is lazy, because originally I didn’t want to do the art; only for an hour later for me to decide I would do something better, but since Posted that on DeviantArt.com already, my better picture didn’t get to come up as an inktober entry, I am a stickler like that!

So the rubbish and lazy art got the inktober day 5 title.

The silhouette of twilight is mine.

Henry did a wonderful space pirate, but he can’t enter the contest as he is under age; there is a space pirate character contest on Deviant Art right now which ends 31st October 2019 and must include a family logo, a special hat and a weapon.  You get to win a year core subscription and a wacom tablet if you win.  I wanted to do that, but I really don’t like the idea that it sounds like they are only after digital art, I am a traditional artist.

Inktober entry day 5.

 

Henry’s space pirate for inktober day 5

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Inktober Day 4

Nearly forgot to post this…

 

My giraffe done with sharpies for Inktober Day 4

 

Henry’s autumn day with autumn leaves for Inktober Day 4

 

My dragon coloured in from yesterday.

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Inktober 2019 – Day 3

Dragon guarding treasure Inktober Day 3

It is currently not coloured because today is my 37th birthday and I am spending the rest of the evening playing board games with my family; tomorrow I will colour it in and it will be available to be seen at my DeviantArt gallery, FFGallery.

 

Henry did the following picture for me as a birthday present, he also made me a lovely box to put my recorder cleaning cloths in, sort of like a washing basket for the recorder cloths, he made out of an old tissue box and painted beautiful butterflies on it.

 

Gift for mama

 

 

 

 

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Inktober 2019 – Day 2

HAPPY INKTOBER DAY 2 EVERYBODY!  TOMORROW IS MY BIRTHDAY!

 

Girl with gum, done with sharpies, by me.

 

Henry’s snowy day for inktober 2019

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Art by me

For more art by me, please take a look at my Deviant Art gallery.

https://www.deviantart.com/ffgallery

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Inktober 2019 Day 1

Today starts a month of artistic challenges called “Inktober” where artists all over the world make art via inks as a primary material.  My son Henry and I are both lovers of this month and we usually make an effort to produce at least one finished work each day during Inktober.  We are huge fans of sharpies and Windsor Newton inks.

Henry will be concentrating mostly on cars and robots whilst I will concentrate on anything I fancy at the time, today I quite fancy getting into the Halloween mood already with a cauldron and some candies!

Therefore we shall be posting daily on both this blog and DeviantArt.com

Here is the first picture of the month!

Panic Attack from Robot Wars by Henry is the first to be shown below; he is a huge fan of that show, practically obsessed with it. 

 

Panic Attack – Robot Wars Fan Art by Henry!

 

Here is my candy cauldron, I know it is a little bit early for Halloween but it was something I wanted to do right now – Henry isn’t letting me live it down, says I should have waited until Halloween before I did it, but I do tend to do a lot of horror or dark themes when I do art anyway, if not that then fantasy and cartoon stuff.

 

Candy Cauldron by me!

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ART

Always a pleasure

Remember this

That art is freedom, it is pure bliss!

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Abstract fantasy me portrait

Here is a self portrait in abstract, ink and sharpies or at least what I think I would look like in a ruff, lol.  

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