Tag Archives: learning

Sunday Word Count 4

Sunday word count four – I’m not on The Wall of Shame huzzah!

This week’s word total is…

12382

And possibly more as I have written approximately six pages of stuff by hand and haven’t typed them up on the computer yet!

It is good but I have written nothing at all for three of the days this week and my only excuse for that is I was exhausted and had gastric flu.  Yes, sorry for the TMI (too much information).

The days break up as this;

11th August – nothing and that’s because our internet is still tetchy, in fact it has been tetchy again today too. 

12th August – 1584 words, which is usually considered a low average for me.

13th August – 7483 words, that is amazing and I wish most days were like this!  Especially as it is still the school summer holiday!

14th August – 637 words, quite low and not at all good in my opinion!

15th August – nothing, because I was busy with other things, mostly reading and calming Henry down and having what seems to be gastric flu.

16th August – nothing again because of the gastric flu!

17th August – 2678 words, which is my good average amount for daily writing.  It is something I would do usually when Henry is at school; it is still the summer holidays so it is amazing I did my average word count for the day whilst he was home!

The writing I have done this week has been mostly notes towards my leprechaun fantasy, including a title change and rewriting certain weak characters to make them have more of a part in the plot of the story, because there was a lot of weak characters, some of which I will be deleting entirely once this fourth or fifth draft is complete. 

I have not included the words towards new story ideas I have had this week, there has been three new novel ideas I have had, but I can’t start work on them until all this other work is finished.  I am not bragging or anything but I really do have a huge backlog of ideas piled up in a corner of this room and it is getting ridiculous because I know that more than half will never ever be started, let alone finished as there is just too many!  I think I must be the only writer in the history of the world who has her own slush pile for what ideas might work and what are weak!

I am also weighing up something in my mind a lot recently.  I love reading and writing fantasy, horror, sci-fi and dystopian stories – I especially love and am addicted to my vampire stories, my saga I am doing.  But I am reading a lot about how a writer shouldn’t really have too many genres under their belt and this is disheartening to me because I love them all.  I can’t release my vampires or my fantasy in particular and there are at least four dystopian stories I really want to write; it seems to me that there are only really two horrors I have planned, so I can release the horror I guess?  Though I have been told by so many people that horror is more of my strength than other types of fiction I write.

I thought I could just write anything and be appreciated just as much, but the more I research the more I am finding that this isn’t the case, I could be found unprofessional and disloyal to my original fan base.  Even to have just the three genres could be too many.  I don’t really know what genre vampires can be put into, because I have found them in so many different sections at the bookstore and in the libraries that they have confused me – they are put into the dark romance, dark fantasy, horror, gothic and erotica sections – so which is it?  Dystopian novels can be put into science fiction, horror or thriller sections too.  Fantasy also has about three sections, dark fantasy, adult fantasy, family fantasy. 

I am struggling to decide which ones to say goodbye to.  My fantasies tend to be comedy family fantasies and some of them are dark, very dark and borderline horror again sometimes with small interjections of dark comedy. 

My Dystopian stories have links with science fiction ideas, new fictional type sciences and leans towards some religious or mythological ideologies or prophecies. 

My vampires are more complexed as the sagas cross into so many genres, science-fiction, horror, romance and fantasy as even my vampires mingle with fairies and so forth.

It is apparently great to be different, but not so different that you can’t define your genre.

If I can’t define my genre right now, how can any of my future agents and publishers?

It is both a depressing and eye opening reality of being a writer.

It makes me feel so caged.

I really love and adore my vampire novels so much and they are a huge part of who I am, but I am not ready to kiss goodbye my leprechauns, mermaids, giants and dragons either.  Nor am I willing to kiss goodbye my ripped up worlds full of warlords and surviving citizens and their struggle for salvation and freedom.

So who is going to take me seriously when I post out my stories to agents in a year or two?

Do you think I worry too much?  Please post what you think in comments below.

Thank you for reading.

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Art, Life, Goals and Disability

It is not just writing that has gripped me as a creative person; over the years I have tried to practise art, but never seriously and I also have an interest in wildlife photography – again, I have never taken this seriously. 

I am a self-taught artist who practises a few days every few months, so I do not practise daily and I have been doing this for the first time in my adult life since around 2012.  I have decided to change this.

I have decided after watching a video on YouTube by Love Life Drawing https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzhVOU47aSo  to practise art daily for just one hour per day because it is said that if you practise doing something for 1000 hours you will become quite good at it, so an hour a day will make it approximately 3yrs before I become a much better artist and to me that is enough to prompt me into action.  Three years is really such a little time.

I have never stopped learning something daily, so therefore I have the ability to continue learning new skills, some people when they get to a certain age give up learning altogether as they feel it is not necessary for them to be learning new things or because they feel that they are too old to change radically which I personally think is (excuse the language) bullshit; I am going to be thirty seven on my next birthday and I am already making radical changes in my life.

The changes are to learn how to become a better writer, learning grammar and punctuation, something ironically I have never bothered to learn before, shocking I know!  Learning math, because I was mostly home-educated and math was a weak point for my main teacher (mum) so therefore after the age of eight I hardly learned math at all.  Practising art, which is something my adult self never took seriously as well as wildlife photography – Paul is a former photographer so he is thrilled I want to take this up!  Also I have a life-long goal that I have never taken seriously and that is to learn five languages before I die, I know enough French and Japanese to survive as a tourist in those countries if I ever go on holiday abroad, but I also started to learn Italian last November.  So my five chosen languages to learn in life fluently are French, Italian, Japanese, Spanish and German.  I am on the cusp of level 2 Italian right now. 

So those are my goals, also my goal is to try and find some way in defeating my auto-immune problem or at least trying to work my way around it so I can actually get a life, a life I want as I am tired of merely existing to keep doctors in their jobs. 

I am also determined to offer myself up to medical science whilst still alive, to find a way in repairing lost hearing, because I am nearly completely deaf and I am scared of losing the tiny bit of hearing I currently have.  Recently I have lost enough hearing that I no longer hear certain beats and rhythms in music that I knew existed before and it really makes me depressed as I lived my life in music before the left ear started to fade away too.  I learned the piano by ear (no pun intended) I can’t read music; I started to learn the guitar just months before my left ear started to play up.  Music composure is another goal I always had and I have done some composing in the past; but when I learned I could be completely deaf by the time I am fifty and I was told I should learn British sign language, I decided to give up music and I don’t care about how Beethoven did just fine with his hearing loss, to me, I love hearing, I love language, I love music and it is hard for me to know I will hear less and less over the years.

I should really add a sixth language goal, to learn British Sign Language but I am afraid that the universe will take this as a resolution that I will go deaf and would make it happen faster.  Stupid I know, I suppose I should give up Italian to learn BSL but I am denying things will get that bad… idiotically no doubt.

So I have decided to post up some art whenever I make it, I will try daily, but you know me, Procrastinator Extraordinaire.  Well here is what I have done today and I want to tell you quite honestly, this is my second attempt at drawing a hand, my hand.  Paul says that hands are notoriously difficult for artists to draw and he insists I have a natural talent for hands, I don’t know what to think about that, but O-K that’s amazing!  I think my hand looks hideous on paper drawn by me, but the hand in itself is deformed slightly, my left hand has a tendon problems that leads up through the forearm and it is twisting more than just my baby finger these days and its becoming painful, something the doctor needs to be alerted on soon as Paul is terrified that if I fall over or support myself the wrong way the baby finger is just going to snap, seriously it is getting that bad!

Sorry for being so graphically cringe worthy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Watercolor mermaid 1st attempt

1st attempt at watercolor mermaid scene

1st attempt at watercolor mermaid scene

 

For the last 6 months I have attempted to teach myself art, sketching and painting particularly with watercolors.
The image that you see is my first ever attempt at creating a watercolor mermaid under the sea scene and my first ever attempt at under-painting a picture.
This image is unfinished and I am afraid to say it will stay that way because I mixed the shades of colors that are used on the paper and my fiance Paul knocked over the palette when getting it for me and it was all lost and I am very reluctant to attempt to try making more of the same shades of color as I don’t want to completely ruin this picture.
There are some blemishes to the image, for example the mark of yellow on her left inside elbow amongst other things, but I cannot repair these without severely impacting on the color scheme, as I cannot guarantee I can mix the same shades again.
I am a self-taught artist that have only really been practicing twice a month any kind of art-work for about a year now, as I mentioned before my attempt at watercolors started about six months ago.
In my personal opinion, starting to teach yourself artwork, particularly sketching/drawing shouldn’t really start at how-to-draw books, because that never worked for me, instead, trusting my own eye works better and reading books based on painting; that is of course if you eventually want to move onto painting your images.
I have been getting a lot of comments from my immediate family and friends that they believe I have a natural talent for art considering that I spend less than five hours a month practicing; personally I don’t see it, I see too many imperfections in my work and I cheat. For example, I have hidden one of the mermaid’s hands in this picture because I couldn’t make it look as good as her right hand and the paper was thinning with all the erasing I had to do.
I have a gallery at deviantart.com if you wish to see more pictures that I’ve done as well as my budding artist four year old son, Henry, some of his best work are up there, which reminds me that I must add his version of a toucan up later on.
http://ffgallery.deviantart.com/

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recent issues

Having second thoughts about taking up NaNoWriMo, I struggle with 250 words a day these days, let alone trying to squeeze in 50,000 in a month – reason?  Migraines, frequent for months now, also I’ve been told that I am showing mild signs of pneumonia which is a worry.  I’ve been ill for weeks now and I am getting progressively worse, been practically bed-bound though for two days, thankfully I have a new laptop so I can do things when I can semi-think.

My main concern is I am unsure how the job center will react to the fact I haven’t gone to the voluntary placement interview yet, particularly as it was supposed to be for the next day and they saw me happy and healthy, but I woke up really bad and it’s not left me for almost 3 weeks now.  I am worried; I wanted to do the voluntary work too as it focuses on a charity I never heard of before but on a subject close to my heart (mental illness and mental learning difficulties and brain injuries) – hope this won’t turn against me?

I am so used to London benefit offices that I worry about every visit.  Unfortunately my husband is unemployed since the National Wildlife Trust could no longer afford him and made him redundant, this is unfortunate because I’ve always had health problems which have made problems with me keeping a job down (auto-immune problems, operations, and rheumatoid arthritis, vertigo and anemia problems as well as panic attacks), needless to say as soon as he became unemployed we had no choice but to go on benefits and they wouldn’t allow him to go on it and support the family I have to go for the interviews too.  Unfortunately even voluntary placements get funny if you have too much time off (even if you’re known to be sick), so I don’t have much of a life as far as social commitments go.

On the positive note my husband is doing home-based voluntary work for seismologists, if at the end of a 9 month period they feel he knows what he is doing he could get employed by them – hopefully the job center will be considerate about this, meanwhile he is trying hard to find work in other places but being aged 57 he is struggling to find anyone who’ll take him seriously, despite his educational and employment history being, Naval engineer, art tutor, customer services, photographer, and having an ecological degree with engineering.

I think my health problems are one of the main contributors to why I am afraid of being published, I cannot commit to anything because of it and really will publishers sympathize with a sick/disabled writer, even if they seem extremely good at what they’re doing?  I doubt it, but I hope I am proven wrong in time.

 

 

 

 

 

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