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What do I do when I am not writing?

Quite a lot actually, because I don’t write much at all these days; I have lots of ideas for things to write but I think illness has made me lose focus and passion for it.  I was a lot more passionate about writing than I am nowadays.  It is simply because pain distracts me and makes me lose where I am heading – coughing fits and a severely runny nose are the biggest contributors for throwing me off course, yanking me out of the zone, as it were.  As I have said before in many posts, I live with a perpetual chronic cold, with ear, nose and throat infections thrown in.  It isn’t just a sniffle, I wish it were, but I can get through five hundred individual tissues on a bad day, two hundred being the norm for me.

Since the 21st December 2019 the only things I have written are what are on the blog and approximately 5000 words of non-posted works of other things, but nothing contributing to my novels.  Hand written notes of other ideas are not included in this, I am spending more and more time in bed these days as I can barely move.  All these problems are giving me severe insomnia and hypersomnia.  What do I mean by that?  Well I don’t sleep at night, I seem to sleep better during the day, for some reason my chest and sinus is worse at night.  When I do eventually sleep during the day I sleep between 7 and 16 hours in a stretch, to wake up for 2 hours in a choking fit with a dry crusted mouth.  Not a pretty visual I know.  I can go 30 to 40 hours without sleeping, purely because I am too busy clearing mucus from my system.

So it isn’t any wonder why I lack focus and concentration really.

Basically, everything I do when I am not writing, are things I can do at home, in the bedroom.  Primarily with my desktop computer, as I have recently had it moved to the bedroom due to the fact I am often too sick to get downstairs these days and I have moved my laptop downstairs for the rare occasion I am down there for more than an hour.  Because my legs swell a lot sitting at the computer desk, I can only sit here for an hour before I have to rest with legs up for thirty minutes, to get the swelling down, so even if I am on a roll, my ankles start burning and that throws me off course and I have to go and put my feet up.

I read approximately 30 to 80 pages of a book per day and about half a magazine too.  The types of things I read the most are fantasy, sci-fi and comedy fiction with a lot of non-fiction thrown in; the non-fiction I enjoy are self-help books, nutrition books, history books, theological research, mythology, folklore and cultural studies.  My current reading list is Time Song by Julia Blackburn, The Toll by Neal Shusterman and Roy Vickery’s folk flora. 

I do puzzles such as codebreakers, arrow words and gardening magazine crosswords – before my chest got too bad I used to love doing 1000 piece jigsaw puzzles, but it is frustrating having a coughing fit and losing pieces across the room all the time!

If I am not too busy fighting mucus, I get to knit, crochet, sew or practise my recorder and keyboard. 

I watch TV only if there are documentaries I am interested in, I mostly watch Smithsonian and BBC four with some Drama channel thrown in.  I will watch anything with Lucy Worsley, anything about the history of jazz, soul and classical music, nature and wildlife documentaries, documentaries about farming and country life.  I like science too, so I will watch sky at night and space science programs as well as things in the past such as time commanders, gladiators and the occasional wrestling show.  I love comedies, I only watch the comedies on the Drama Channel, but I am picky about which ones to watch.  I like only connect and some quiz and puzzle shows like Countdown, but I don’t watch them all the time.  I have to be in the mood to watch TV and before I was sick I watched around three hours of TV a week, these days it’s about two hours a day.  We never miss Michael McIntyre’s Big Show if we can help it, nor do we tend to like missing gardeners world or shows such as the RHS show, cruft’s and BBC Proms.  I’m pretty old fashioned I suppose for someone who is thirty seven.  I dislike soap operas and drama llama stuff – yes I mentioned the drama channel, but there are three hours a day where it is strictly comedy and I tend to only watch that channel (at the comedy times) or food network when there is nothing else on.  Sometimes I put on a DVD and I will often choose vampires or family animations and comedies. 

The main things I do these days are play games online.  I don’t even socialise that much online anymore, because I lose concentration and people who know me are starting to think I have memory problems.  Because a coughing fit will make me forget what I have said or what I was on about.

The online games that grip me are… Roblox, yes Henry got me onto it and to be honest, Roblox has saved my relationship with my son!  Because I find his kind of games hard to do since becoming sick – Roblox has opened a whole new world for us and we play hide and seek and various other games together.  When Henry is at school, I still sneak onto the site and play bee swarm simulator, Ripull mini games and fairy simulator.  Bee Swarm simulator especially!

Other online games I play are ovipets it is a cute breeding game on facebook and I have been addicted to that for nearly 5yrs. 

Flightrising is another breeding game, but I go in and out of phases with that.  Primarily I have played this for a whole eight months without a break, purely because Henry wants to see what dragons I breed and he loves to name them and do what we call “Dragon Lottery”.  Dragon Lottery is where I look through the offspring possibilities scrying menu to see what will happen if I pair certain dragons up, sometimes I can’t decide, so I make a list of all the best ones that go with my chosen female that day and I number them, then Henry, Paul and I will choose a number from the list and put it through random.org and sometimes someone gets the number right, in which case that person must get a treat of some kind or get to choose to do something; I breed five pairs of dragons every five days, because that is how long it takes for the eggs to hatch and we have a limit of five breeding nests on this game. 

I used to play online scrabble but I have got accused of cheating because I know too many unusual words.  I don’t cheat on that game, I don’t see what purpose that serves other than the joy of creating misery on another person who loses and I am not a vindictive person like that.  I really do have a broad vocabulary, though I rarely use it outside of scrabble and I love doing anagrams for fun, so I see a lot of seven letter words and I am a dictionary and language addict, so I know words that are weird to normal people.  Here is a list of words I know for high scoring on scrabble, which have got me accused of cheating when used previously – plus, I have read books written by scrabble champions.

ZEBU – QAT –  QUARE – SEQUIN – AWK – EUOI – AIA – QI – KIMCHI – VEX – VAV – TAV – EAU – UVEA – AEON – OXIDE – POXY – QIN – QINTAR – FATWA – QABALA – QADI – SJOE – KHAKI – EUOUAE to name but a few.  I have to admit I was shocked when SEQUIN was considered a questionable word, the others I can understand, but I was sure almost everyone knew what sequins were?

I love words and word play so much I have considered about having a word of the week thing, but I am unreliable with keeping to things like that, as you can clearly see from past efforts or lack of.

Other than sketching with pencils or sharpies in bed and/or colouring in and story planning, I don’t do much else on a bad day.  On a good day I can add about an hour of light gardening to the list but not much else anymore.

I’m pretty boring I suppose, by my peers.  I can’t even cuddle the rabbit lately because I cough too much it terrifies the poor thing!  I suppose I sound like some big barking bear or something to the poor creature.

I have gone out to the doctors and walked past dogs when I am like this and the dogs think I am barking at them, they react accordingly, it is embarrassing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Getting to know me

Constructive Procrastination

Procrastination is a part of a creative person’s life; something they get comfortable with and sometimes it seems that procrastination is an essential part of who we are and where we get out ideas from. For me, I am constantly procrastinating; this blog is a fine example because I often do not post a thing for weeks on end!
However, as procrastinating I can be, I am always doing what I consider to be “constructive procrastination” because whatever I am doing when it is not writing regularly for my blog, I am in fact, building myself up for other creative activities – usually writing things that aren’t meant for my blog, reading books, researching, filling my mind up with wacky art and images etc.
What have I done since the last post on my blog?
I’ve started and completed two jigsaw puzzles, one of them was a 1000 piece Ravensburger “Santa Express” Limited Edition 2013, the other was Christmas Quarter 500 piece puzzle, I have since started another one of those Christmas Quarter puzzles, despite it being mid-February. Now this seems like procrastination at its finest, but for me this closes my mind to everyday worries and opens my mind for new ideas – a type of meditation.
I have sketched several pieces of clothing that my characters like wearing in a fantasy story that is in planning stage.
I have also read two adult sized novels “The Light Fantastic” by Terry Pratchett and “Occupy Me” by Tricia Sullivan, I am a slow reader – an adult novel of approximately 300 pages will take me about five to eight days to complete because my brain insists on showing me everything that’s going on in fine details like a movie.
I have also read snippets of other books too, as I am a multi-reader, I can have about twelve books on the go at any one time and not get confused!
I have researched the history of the Cathars, Japanese folklore and Hammer movies.
I have done one or two pictures from an adult colouring in book, another form of meditation for me.
I have sorted out my much overdue papers into organised piles and backed my computer up.
I have watched online videos and looked at online images in regards to natural history, local nature, religious history, philosophy, Cosmic Ordering and been a member of some online Goth, geek and fantasy groups at Facebook.
I have researched to the best of my ability as to how I can get into comic book writing and how to sell my art.
My son has come down sick twice since the last post, so I had to take care of him.
I have watched the rugby and I have written the synopses of several stories I am about to write as novels.
Actual writing I have accomplished as part of a/or several novels – approximately 800 words – not a lot. But that’s fine when you consider I am actually writing an average of 800 to 3000 words per day, even if it is just a diary entry or my 750 words from 750words.com – I am actually writing a whole lot more than I used to!
I am writing in depths about the dreams I have at night. I have been writing down my ideas behind ethical behaviour and the changes that needs to happen to society for a better world. I have written how I feel about my family and circumstances. I have been making business plans and life plans. I have sat down for several hours in the last few weeks with my husband lulling over ideas about our life and even brainstorming my stories with him! I have also helped my son start writing his own stories and he is nearly 6yrs old!
A lot of what I am writing is not actually story based or for the blog. I have written several posts since the last time I have posted on this website, but the situation has been that I found it unsuitable for my readers here because I am either ranting about things or I am giving too many of my ideas away.
I have written notes on historical facts that I feel will help me with my stories. I am a self-student of the social sciences, since leaving the OU course for social sciences because I couldn’t cope with the demands in math and stats as well as having a teething baby on hand.
I have finally decided how one of the novels I am writing is going to end, so now I know this and have written the bullet points; it should be finished by April 20th, and yes, I am going to approach someone with it. The story is a horror with some Japanese folklore element to it, because I have studied the Japanese culture and language a lot in the last eight years as I love their comics and their sense of humour and horror; if and when I get published, I hope this opens a doorway to Japanese media, because I would love to travel to Japan and use the language skills I’ve developed. I should get on quite well in Japan speaking Japanese, as I have learned enough to get me by as someone who speaks the language a little better than the average tourist, though learning their script is near impossible for me at this stage!
I have also discovered through an ESA examination that I might have a neurological disorder I should discuss with my doctor, because I have been blacking out, phasing out, getting shaking hands and been getting a lot of problems with my upper body mobility. I have noticed that this is slowing my writing down a lot, because I am making huge errors such as forgetting how to use punctuation – writing different words than I originally wanted to and generally not making much sense at times, so if you come across this, please note it and let me know, thanks!
I write descriptions in depth or comedy scenes, but none of this is embodied into a story yet.
I don’t know if I am a proper writer and I don’t know if proper writers do exactly what I’ve been doing, but I am curious to find out. Is there more to being a writer than just sitting down writing poems and stories? Do we essentially write mostly about anything but those two main ideas society have about us?
I have never joined a writers group so I wouldn’t know. I would like to join my local writers group but the bus time tables make this difficult for me as the classes are twice a month at 7:30pm and the last bus to my village is at 8pm and I can’t walk that far home these days – I can’t drive either and have been advised not to with my medical conditions, such a shame really as I would have enjoyed it.
So that’s me since the New Year in a nutshell.

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Filed under About my work

Daily Pages 1 2015

Daily pages are just that, to be written daily.
If I for whatever reason have forgotten to do so, some day, please email me at misstcousins@hotmail.com and tell me to pull my finger out and write them, if you are a fellow author or artist, because I need some motivation and support in my creativity at times; being lonely and without creative friends makes me lethargic and lazy.
Usually it is required to write three pages per day in your daily pages alone until you have built a habit of writing again; I start these and do it well for about seven weeks but then I lose interest and then I do not write for three or four months at a time; this is not because I have no interest in writing or because I am forcing myself to write because I am interested in the money prospect once published – but because I get lazy, I get ill, I get side-tracked by new games online or 1000 piece puzzles and painting.
I am 32yrs old, I have only one friend offline and I see her less than once a month because I live an isolated life, because of my sickness. I am trying to see her more often, especially as she is only four doors away from my house and her name is Alona, she is Latvian and we became friends because my son and her daughter goes to school together and are in the same class and are best friends.
Alona seems to me to be the perfect friend, one that is there for you during your ups and downs and though I personally don’t see her often, she helps a lot. My husband and my son see her daily and occasionally she looks after Henry for me if I have appointments that are at the times where we should pick him up from school – he enjoys going there and playing with his best friend Alice.
I just wish I could do more for Alona, as I am sorry to say it all seems too one-sided this friendship and I feel like I am taking advantage of her good nature.
Alona’s husband is a builder and has often offered to do our house up for us for free, I couldn’t possibly allow it, he works too much as it is.
I am reading a lot more lately too, I am getting through two to three books a week now, particularly books based on art and how to paint and cosmic ordering.
I must say however, that the more I read, the less I want to write fiction because I feel that I am stealing from someone all the time or many people, I don’t think there are original ideas anymore and I don’t want to come across as a cheating fraud; I have been on numerous writers groups online and they’ve all said that I shouldn’t worry about it and just simply write and get things published as a lot of people have confidence in me that I have natural talent not only in writing but also art. I still feel fraudulent though.
Today is a Saturday when I am writing these daily pages and they won’t be published until tomorrow, daily pages will be published on my blog the day after I have written them because I am trying to get ahead in my writing of this blog.
I am a little confused by myself, I created this blog to be based mostly around fantasy short stories and it has become a personal life and poetry blog instead, fully unintentionally, I am actually disappointed in myself for allowing it to be side-tracked, but it will be side-tracked a lot from now onwards because I do plan to talk about a great number of things, from food, to culture, as well as fiction and poetry.
Horror will be present on this blog too, so if you’re going to be too squeamish it might not be for you.
I am also very spiritual and will talk about various things in regards to spirituality and the occult.
Something random, today I went the hospital for an appointment with my consultant, yes a Saturday morning, no lie ins today; and on the bus I saw a lovely site, sitting on the fence in the beautiful English countryside just outside the East side of Coventry city, between Pailton and there, was a buzzard watching some sheep and it turned its head and looked directly at me, it was amazing.
I was also confused by some hedgehogs which seemed to be up and about at midday, two in fact, in half a mile distance to one and other, I thought they were strictly nocturnal.
I am unhappy with the fur I found outside my house today too, lots of it, looks like some animal had had it ripped right out of them in the night, I was a little unsettled, because I got myself involved a few years ago online with some witch friends and I got myself an American boyfriend who turned nasty and jealous with my offline friendships in the UK and he turned my friends against me and when they hate someone they do curse them and stalk them and tend not to forget them. It makes me wonder, you know?
Though Paul my husband reckons he heard a very aggressive cat fight last night around 3am, I take his word for it because I am nearly totally deaf these days without both my hearing aids in and when I am asleep the only way I can wake up from day to day is to be patted on the rump, I can’t even hear an alarm clock!
It is weird you know to think that it is cheaper to travel 120 miles away to visit a friend to a free entry fete in Sheffield than it is to go to a local adventure playground park, I bought this up because soon it is half-term and I am thinking about doing something with my son Henry; I was hoping to take him to The Conkers Discovery Center near Ashby-De-La-Zouch and it would cost us for the whole day around £90 – 110, whereas a trip to Sheffield to visit my friend at a free classic car show will be £18 return ticket via coach, it’s a mad world.
I then looked into taking him to the nearest zoo, all costs included; train fayre, food, tickets etc. will set us back £250.
We have a leaking roof which will cost us £3000 to replace as we’ve bought this house outright now, we have a new boiler system being put in next week and we are in dire need for a skip that will cost £150 for what we need.
My health is getting really crap now, excuse my French and so, I thought enough is enough and it’s time for a change – so I decided to re-enter my interest in cosmic ordering and ho’oponoopono to get my life back to where I want it to go and not where other people are forcing it to go.
I was told for cosmic ordering to be truly beneficial to you and your life, you must not set yourself limits or be humble in what you want, you’ve got to be completely honest with yourself about what you want from life or else it will feel you are trying to cheat the system and you won’t get exactly what you want – or if you do, there will be things you will still be unhappy about – so I have made a list of the things I really truly want, to the maximum and greediest of my dreams for a perfect life.
My wants and needs are thus;
I want a garden bigger than 1.5 acres not sure how big I am willing to go, but the garden must be able to contain a large area for guinea pigs and guinea breeding and rearing (breeding to keep and show, not sell or give away). The area should contain several pens to separate males and females for selective breeding and each pen should contain 20 individuals with lots of space for toys, and a little tunnel that leads outside in the garden for fresh air. My husband Paul used to breed guinea pigs in the past, so he has the necessary experience to do this.
The garden must also be big enough for me to have an agility training area for my dogs, Paul and I have agreed we must have at least 4; one pair will breed a litter where we will keep at least 1 pup and keep that line in our family for generations if possible. Again I will show my breeding pair of dogs, the other two dogs I won’t because we plan on having a giant breed and a lapdog, the breeding pair will be some kind of spaniel or collie. I have the necessary experience to train dogs, in fact I very nearly got a job as a police dog trainer, but because the job involved me bringing home two pups to live with me during their training my mum wouldn’t let me take the job (I lived with her at the time).
The garden must also be big enough for 50 fruit trees, particularly apples and hazelnuts, as we want to hire dormice to help them breed and work with the national wildlife trust.
We also want a vegetable and fruit patch at least 50ft square.
We want a large patio area with potted herbs that’s approximately 30 by 30ft and a large BBQ area; this patio area might be extended to an outdoor swimming pool that will have a pull enclosure that’s attached to the house so we aren’t limited to using it only in the summer.
We also want a little meadow flower patch to attract bees, we want to hire a beehive, and we also want a pond big enough to take 6 Aylesbury ducks.
We also need an area to put chickens, up to 30 of them.
And a little flower garden, a football field for the kids, another field with several adventure playground apparatus for the kids and finally a little moss garden retreat for me.
Ideally this house will contain a brook or a stream flowing through the garden somewhere.
As for the house we need a lounge for visitors, a family lounge, and a large shared office for me and Paul, a huge kitchen with a dining area and room for a sofa and an island and a walk in larder, as I am Ina Garten in this family.
We also want a separate formal dining room as we will host dinners.
We also need a large art and music studio as I do compose music as well as paint and write.
A play room for the kids downstairs would be an added bonus, a downstairs toilet, an outside toilet, a three car garage, an annexe for a housekeeper, and a minimum of 5 bedrooms because I want more kids and I have relatives that travel down from Manchester a lot who needs a place to stay at Christmas time.
My life will involve painting, writing, composing, and voluntary work, prop making for theatres and going to auction houses.
Ideally I would want for nothing, never to be in the situation again of deciding between going to the hospital via bus or having £8 less in the food budget that week, which is a lot, considering the current food budget, is £50 a week.
I do not want to drive, but Paul wants a large garage for two cars, one that’s large for day trips with the kids and friends, and another little run around for us to do shopping in when the kids are at school, he also wants a RV as we’ll take regular trips to Great Yarmouth and Dorset and the peak district for photography and rock pool reasons.
We’d also like to drive across Europe from time to time.
I would love to go to the fantasycon every year; I would love to go shopping in New York at Christmas time. I would love my health to get better so I can start living now I am away from forced isolation.
I want to be able to be a Goth again (though not a strict one as I get rainbow moments, hippy moments, sexy jazzy moments, steampunk moments and middle eastern harem belly dancer moments) and to afford their plus sizes as I am not a lightweight, I can barely afford normal types of clothes, let alone alternative fashions.
I want to say to my son, yes I can buy you those Disney Cars pyjamas that are £25, there you go – I want to be able to buy things off the rack in shops and not have a buy now and pay later account in some catalogue.
I want to surrender to my urges that one day I wake up and I say to myself, I want to go by bus to town, just to go to the library and sit about for a couple of hours and then come back home without second thoughts that this will cost me £7 out of our weekly food budget.
I don’t want to sit around for 3 months waiting for me to save enough to get more brushes or paints to finish a painting I’ve started, which is a regular occurrence.
I want to make friends that are so at home with me they think they’re family – I don’t want friends that are there just for fun or just to rant about life, I want positive, creative, spiritual and family oriented people who want friends because they want emotional support, they love people, they crave being with others and sharing food and homes with them.
That’s the dream life for me.
This is what I am working towards with my cosmic ordering ideas.
Wish me luck xx

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Filed under My inspirations, My life