Tag Archives: writer

Considering non-fiction

A common piece of advice in the writing world is “write what you know” and although I do like to write a lot of things for research and so forth I have never really completely considered writing non-fiction before, but now I feel I would like to, for magazines eventually.  I have contemplated writing for a couple of specific hobby magazines because I have extensive knowledge on their main subjects.  I am going to list what I feel I know a lot about here and I may or may not share posts in the future of these subjects just to give you a taste of what I know.

Gardening

More specifically no dig, organic, permaculture, poly-culture style gardening.  This also includes wildlife gardening and creating mini-ecosystems, building a pond and dry stone walling.

I am also very knowledgeable in wild food foraging, where plants originated from and native British species, this also includes an interest in garden ornithology, and I wouldn’t say I am a bird watcher, but I pay too much attention to the wildlife and bird life within my own personal property that I have gotten to know their numbers as well as their habits.

I would also say that regarding garden pests and flora disease I am also a very knowledgeable biological warrior, using only nature against nature, nothing man-made, to benefit my plant-life, this means I will sometimes grow things I don’t specifically want, simply to provide my garden what I call “Sacrificial” plants.

Along with this I have had an avid interest in flora folklore/superstitions and ancient medical uses and my flora Latin is quite good, almost Carol Klein like.  I keep up to date with the gardening world as much as possible and before my health and benefit cuts happened I was a subscriber to four of Britain’s most renowned gardening magazines amongst other magazines I was interested in – bit of a magazine addict I was/am.

I have a huge amount of experience gardening a lot throughout my life (not professionally) but in the past three years specifically it has been only in dribs and drabs and the garden is looking a mess to put it lightly, namely because of health complications.

American professional wrestling between the years 1990 and 2003

I was an addict of watching wrestling when I was 10yrs old right up until I met an ex-boyfriend who didn’t approve of how much I loved wrestling.  I watched every kind of wrestling that was available to me, I bought every VHS and DVD I could afford at the time and I was even planning to go to America to learn how to wrestle – upon reflection it is a good thing I didn’t considering my career would have been over aged 30 because of these health problems!  I read a lot of wrestling magazines and body building magazines because I was so into it, then aged 21 I kind of grew up and loss contact with wrestling almost completely until last year.  I now sparsely watch TNA and AEW.

I am not sure I could write very much about what I knew from that long ago because it would be considered too ancient for anyone to care, I suppose?

Dogs, dog breed histories and dog training and grooming

I have been considered by people who know me as being the female British version of Cesar Milan as I seem to be a dog whisperer and have helped several people understand their dog’s behaviour!

I know it sounds absolutely awful but a few weeks ago on TV there was a show on it called train your baby like a dog and I have to say it is absolutely true – I see no difference whatsoever in training a dog than I do a baby and vice versa, it is very similar!  Every social creature has an innate desire to become dominant within its social circle and this usually is the worst during infancy, every social creature eventually learns through infancy and good guidance from its elders that it has to follow rules or there will be ramifications, it is not different to humans at all.  Humanity has to get over this silly idea that humans are different to animals.

You get a neglected child and they tend to grow up off the rails and they attack authority at all costs in many cases, you get a well nurtured child and they are more likely to fall in line and be a good citizen.  I know from personal experience not every child who is neglected grows up to become an anarchist, because not every child in the world has the desire to control others.  Children like I was simply wanted the world to be a lovely peaceful place and this in turn, made me quite a submissive and quiet individual.  My brother on the other hand was the type to go off the rails and fight authority all his life.  My other brother was nurtured pretty well because he was a love child and was wanted, unlike me and the other brother, consequently he is a neutral person who has a good relationship with his mother and is socially stable with very little emotional problems.

It is the same with dogs in my opinion.  You nurture that dog like it is your personal baby and depending on how much discipline you demand of it, it will either take advantage of you and become a nasty biting little dog, or it will grow up a stable individual who loves his mama and will obey at all costs.  By discipline I don’t mean shout and yell or kick and hit, that is disgusting behaviour which will eventually become a habitual behaviour in whatever creature you are nurturing as it will become a normality for them.

With a dog, like a baby and a toddler you command and teach with as few words as possible that you repeat regularly so not to confuse them, so it sinks in and you give them infinite patience no matter how you feel.

Superstitions and folklore around the world including cryptozoology

I have had a massive interest in all things supernatural and all things strange and unknown since I was around seven years of age.  I have studied extensively as many books on the subject as possible, particularly witchcraft and vampires, but there has been other creatures and situations I have been interested in hugely.  I have also been interested in peasant folklore and their beliefs, such as talking to the bees, bowing and saluting magpies and being aware of what colour and type of flower you bring to a person or a house.  I am interested in the Victorian art of the language of flowers, something I should have mentioned above in the gardening section.  I have been gifted beautiful bunches of flowers and often hide a laugh behind my polite thank you smile, when I notice I have been gifted red and white lilies as in some superstitions around the world red and white denotes death as well as lilies being the flower of death.  I don’t hold with the superstitions myself, but I love learning about them.  For example, I have bought lilacs and hawthorns into my home as part of my cut flower display for the dining table, many superstitious people would say that my health is my own fault then, because those plants bought into the house will make the head of the house sick and even kill them within a couple of months.

World History primarily European and Chinese history

This is another subject that I am interested in, particularly my own personal genetic history and the history of aristocrats, royalty and gypsies, also ancient warfare and combat.  The history I am interested in is vast, I also love reading about architecture too and fashion from the ages.  I have a lot of useless information in my head if I wasn’t a writer, but as I am a writer these so-called useless bits of information that seem to serve no purpose are actually polished gems which will help me create real feeling worlds in my novels.

Food is another interest of mine

I am knowledgeable in vegan and vegetarian dishes (but not a vegetarian or vegan myself), the paleo lifestyle and the diet known as The Wahl’s Protocol, Mediterranean diet, Indian and Chinese diet, as well as desserts and pies and so forth.  I love cooking and baking, sugar crafting and making homemade sweets, cakes etc. you name it, I love it.  Despite my allergies, which adds another skill to my list, all these things above I can do gluten and lactose free!  I don’t just research recipes and share them either, I am so interested in the world around me and how to keep healthy (because let’s face it I need to try and stop being ill) that I can tell you the sorts of vitamins and minerals you will find in each piece of food you eat as well as tell you the best way to grow it and it’s best companion plants in the garden to grow it next to and the type of soil it needs for the highest of nutritional benefit!

I make compotes, jams and chutneys, soups, pies, pastries, cakes, bread, I am just very versatile in the kitchen, but I must warn you… I am one of these strange people in life who can’t do anything simple like omelettes or frying sausages, without burning them or myself, the more complicated the recipe, the better I am!

Chickens too

Yes you heard it; I am knowledgeable about keeping chickens and how to keep them healthy, including any plants you must avoid around them and using their chicken manure as well as making excellent homemade chicken stock and soup.

Gemstone healing

I used to be into this big time, but lately I am so ill with so many things going on that unless I lay down for three hours a day I really don’t benefit much from these anymore, simply because I can’t lay down for more than 3 minutes on a bad day without choking.

But the stuff I know seems to work for others.

Religion and religious history from around the world

Despite being renowned as a person with humanist leanings and having no precise religion, I am actually quite obsessed about learning about religion in all its forms and researching intensively.  I don’t have a religion because I don’t like to commit to something which could actually be what I call a “deceivers religion”, I am paranoid about getting it wrong.  In a lot of my research material I have discovered amazing things that have surprised me so much I have been absolutely stupefied at how little so-called pious people know about their own faith and its origins.

I try not to preach to people when religion is bought up (only inform so they can make their own decisions about things) but I am shocked about how little they know of their own faith, it is hard, but I have made a point that as far as religion and politics are concerned, I can air my beliefs online on social media but I will not engage on any debate about it, because once you commit to something like that, it will become a never ending argument as neither side tends to relent.  For some religious people, when I simply state “each to their own and lets agree to disagree” they simply won’t leave it at that.  I have extensive knowledge of Judaism, Catholicism and Christianity in all its forms as well as Hinduism and Buddhism; I haven’t much knowledge just yet on Islam or Sikhism unfortunately.  But I also know a lot about ancient religions such as Norse, Greek, Roman, Egyptian and especially Sumerian beliefs.

It is interesting to read the origin of Christianity too; a lot of the original beliefs are not upheld in Christian communities of today, a Christian from the time of Christ’s death around the time it first started, would have a problem digesting a lot of what goes on in Christian communities of today.

For me personally God is gender-less, they do not have a name simply as being known as a creator or more specifically the creator, I cannot give them an image nor assume that they are in human form just because I am, I will not presume what he deems is good and evil, but I do believe he will give me the innate instinct of knowing what he thinks about certain things I am pondering before I do them.  If I think I would feel bad or remorseful after doing something, I generally consider that as a sign I must not do it and I have had this belief for nearly 18yrs.  It is naughty to presume anything about God or the creator, no one must think they can speak for him or make laws based on what they believe he wants – because I do also believe there is a deceiver who works against the truth and that is the evil in the world.  If anything hurts or kills or hates or does anything remotely negative, it has been influenced by the evil in the world or the deceiver as I call them.  I will also state that I do believe billions of people can be wrong, because billions of people can be duped, look at the concept of fake new for one thing – fake news is not new.  I must admit I have been planning a book on this, but I am scared I will become the new Salman Rushdie with death threats and so forth.  Paul believes he has never met a more pious person in his life, pious but without religion, pious but without an explanation to the world and he would never dare call me religious in a mainstream sense, because that would be very wrong, there is no religion in the world which is remotely pure enough that it cannot be tainted in some way and I believe I am by far from perfect, no one can be perfect in a world where evil resides so freely.

Some people in the past have considered me to be a Satanist, simply because I quoted something that Satan was reputed to have said once.  I am trying to remember the source where I read it from, but he was quoted in saying “I do not hate God, but I hate the God of man”, which in my opinion tells me a lot, it tells me that the God of man is what man has made for himself either by humanities own design or by the design of a great deceiver, which also shows me that Satan is not someone who is at war with God if I were to believe the Judo-Christian concept – it means there is a different devil at work, someone who has cleverly kept his name unknown and has spread bad media against those of the truth, whilst endeavouring over the centuries to conceal, hide and destroy the truth, to confuse humanity with false knowledge.

It is very deep stuff, but it is worth thinking about.

I believe wholeheartedly that there is a balance in the universe and at present the balance is tipping hither and tither good and evil, there is definitely a power struggle and I have no idea why humanity is key in it all nor whether or not humans are the only creatures on earth who have a religion, because I am not Dr Doolittle.  But we can’t presume that animals don’t have a religion no more than we can presume what the truth is.

You can find the truth in a lot of lies, because a liar can never remember their own lies and will often slip up.  If you read many conflicting religious ideas over the centuries you do begin to see a pattern of both inconsistencies and consistencies.

I know I am religious in my own way because five years ago a person in the street yelled next to me at some Jehovah Witnesses in Birmingham this “God is dead”! and for me, that was a knife through the heart and stomach and it made me feel quite ill, it affected me badly enough that Paul had to stop me ranting at them about how wrong and evil they were to state it.

I know some of my poetry seem to attack God directly, but you have never asked which God I am writing about.  Usually when I write about God so venomously I write about the God of man or the deceptive God and I will tell you something extraordinary and you may not be inclined to believe it.  But when I was 25yrs old I spoke a lot about my beliefs on four religious and spiritual forums and I was researching for the truth, I discovered many things, many so-called secret societies and secrecy in general, I was shocked to find in my private message box, a message from the Vatican telling me that what I say may or may not indeed be true, but I must stop talking about it, lest I have problems from them.  Thinking nothing of it, for a short while in my life I noticed I was stalked, primarily by priests and nuns which is unnerving and a strange coincidence.  When I decided to stop vocalising about it all, they stopped following me.

Now is this a coincidence?  I was never really sure.  But it is food for thought.  Coincidentally, seven people I knew from the forums that refused to be quiet on the same subjects, died in accidents in less than two years after my silence and a further two people were arrested for apparently nothing and was never released, weird enough their families and friends are unable to visit them which has caused big stirs with the authorities.

It is a strange world out there, stranger than you think and more secretive and deceptive than you think.

Arts and crafts

I have a  broad scope of knowledge regarding arts and crafts, from doing 1000 piece puzzles, to knitting, sewing, embroidery, decoupage, greeting card making, scrap-booking, felt making, making Christmas and Halloween decorations, you name it, I have probably done it for a time. 

Learning languages and having an interest in the origins of words and names

For some of my friends I can come across as a bit of a Susie Dent from Countdown to them, I will explain the name and origins of their chosen names for their babies and I will bring up words they’ve never heard of before because they have recently been removed from the English dictionary and I am vainly trying to popularise those words so that they can get back into the dictionary once again.  I had a huge debate three weeks ago with a bunch of online friends about the new username I have on a game site we use, the word was Eventide, a lot of people misunderstood this as being Eve as in Adam and Eve and some others thought what does ide mean?  Because they thought I meant event ide as some thought perhaps I loved fishing!  Well no, eventide is old English for evening and they can’t understand why I just didn’t name myself Evening instead.  How boring.  A lot of people are forgetting the use for the words dawn and dusk and even twilight, you say the word twilight now and they instantly think shitty teen vampire movie.  Twilight by the way is my most favourite time of the day, it is so beautiful sometimes and I have often thought about naming a daughter Twyla because of it, though the meaning of the name Twyla is old English for two or double, usually given to a twin daughter a lot like the name Thomas for boys, which also means twin.  I know quite a bit of Latin, I am currently a level 3 Italian students, fluent in French, tourist ability in Japanese and Spanish and I have learned excellent methods of learning languages at an incredible speed.  If I practise a language an hour a day I am usually fluent within the year at most, regarding languages I am a fast learner, astute, adroit, you name it!  It can be difficult to speak in all the words I know because I still have that working class way inbuilt into me, but I can shift the manner of which I speak very well to whomever I am talking to at the time.  I don’t mean my voice, I don’t mean my personal mannerisms or accent, I am simply talking about going from tabloid to broadsheet whenever the situation needs it!  I often sit there, with my semi-working-class accent talking to people of upper middle or high class talking to me, they think working class, OK, I use some big words here to make myself sound smarter and I sit there and grin because I can use big words too, it is a lovely feeling to have, smarm.

That’s about it really.   That and general literature, but that is mostly useful for quizzes or recommendations rather than being a piece of worthwhile knowledge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The kelp dragons and the fairy coronation

In the land of the kelp dragons all mossy and green

The creatures are preparing a coronation for a new fairy queen

Her dress is green felt embroidered with ferns and her crown is gold apricots that won’t spoil or turn

She rides to the scene with an elegant mare, that’s decorated with blueberries, apples and pears

The dragons sit around protecting the queen

Nothing can harm them, they are too supreme

The fairies all gather around in the fen

As the dragons give their blessings to the queen and them

Before the dawn comes all have fun at the ball

The royal procession is fun time for all

Before the sunrises, the queen kisses goodbye, to all the kelp dragons and tries not to cry

Because she won’t ever see them again, as they only come to fairies if its coronation time again

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Filed under Poems J - L, Short Story Series

Social media following corps

This post is about what I call “The social media following corps” and how I feel about social media in general – it is not a rant, it is just an opinion and one that many people find both interesting and strange regarding my view of it all.

I have many social media accounts purely to try and network if I can, usually my time whether sick or not, dictates that I don’t really have time to squeeze in too much conversation with people who may not ever actually be involved in my offline life.  Many people, who follow me on the social networks I am on, are lucky to get a reply from me about once a month, but certainly over two thirds of my followers don’t even get that much attention from me.  It is confusing for me to understand how many people in the world of social media have full-time jobs, families, write as a side-line and still have time to spend twiddling away on mobile phones talking to thirty individuals a day and manage to remember and even get upset if someone has not replied to them for a set time frame and will go to the extent of deleting the said individual.  Where do people find the time to do all this and remember thousands of individual on their social media following page?  I can’t be like that – no more than I can do what my aunt and cousins constantly request of me, which is to take photographs and videos all the time on my mobile phone to prove to them that this certain day was as great as I said it was, that I did indeed go to the Severn Valley or Dudley Zoo, they want photographic proof all the time and I am just too busy living the moment to remember to pull out my phone every five minutes and I am made to feel alien because of it.  Is it really so weird to enjoy the moment without pushing buttons and capturing it all for the world to see?  Must I really take a photograph of that gluten and lactose free cheeseburger I found in Rugby that time?

I feel the world of social media can sometimes become too silly and compulsive.  By trying to capture the moment it often ruins the moment and makes the moment less personal – it’s that way for me anyway!

I like checking twitter and seeing who has made effort to try and communicate with me and I do try to reply to those I feel have something worth replying to.  Most of the time however I just say thanks for the heads up or thank you, or whatever it is usually just short and sweet and usually I hardly get anything back other than the same old same old.  I will always praise where I feel praise is truly due, I will not make a polite comment just to boost someone’s ego that is not me, I am very honest about my opinions of other people’s work.  I am not just nice for the sake of it, if I comment nicely to you, then you in my opinion are worthy of that comment and you should feel proud of yourself for doing great work.  My criticisms are there to help you along, improve you and I don’t usually bite that hard when I do so, I am tactful.  I am not like the guy who once told me that they believe that something I wrote was a one night bender after booze, that is just rotten and cruel and not very specific and constructive, it is just criticism for criticisms sake.

I have never understood the culture of follow Fridays.  I like and appreciate that people share my name with their followers, but I often wonder why?  I don’t do that myself and some people have unfollowed me for it as I rarely mention other people in my tweets unless I am specifically talking about them or to them.  I only follow people I find interesting and that goes for all social media and blogs, if I am following you, I genuinely like your work and I am interested in you as a person.  I am also quite an introvert with new people so it can take me awhile to try and make a conversation if I am the first one to start any kind of conversation.  I am a cautious person when conversing with new people because I have been raised in a very aggressive, uptight and insecure environment, where a relative of mine had their throat cut once just for looking at a person and allegedly smirking at them.  So you can understand my caution.

I am not anti-social, I just find it difficult to meet thousands of people’s expectations all of the time, every single day, when they are not actually involved in my personal offline life.  I always try to visit other bloggers who follow me here, but sometimes it is not always easy to get around some of their blogs and I am a bit of a luddite, if technology is difficult I don’t give it much time before I think “ugh, I can’t get my head around this, I have to go” because complicated technology makes me quick to anger.  Some people over complicate their blogs and that is where I think a lot of bloggers go wrong.  They hide things behind this tab and that tab and every time you go to their page their oldest introduction page is the first thing you see – whereas really it should be your latest post.  Because some people have so many tabs that their latest post could be hidden behind any twenty of those tabs, not the one you think it might be.  It is a crying shame as there is a lot of talent out there with people who just don’t know how to present their work appropriately.

Another thing which sort of upsets me regarding social media is the idea that because I am a writer, I must have had a book published somewhere, anywhere and that I must promote it to these other writers who are following me and if I never do that (and I never have) they question my authenticity as an author.  “Oh, but your profile says you are a writer and you follow me and you have retweeted my promotions I need to do the same for you”, yes but the problem is I am unpublished formally and I unlikely to have anything published within the next two to three years, realistically.  So they start to tell me how Amazon is a great medium for becoming published or other self-publishing places, I keep telling them I am not yet ready for this because there are some personal issues I need to clear up first but they never understand.

You see, I have been told that there are some medical conditions the doctor suspects I have, but our area has a two year waiting list to investigate anything let alone get to have a first appointment with a consultant – nobody is ready to hear that because they want my work and they want it now and these are just other writers, they are not even agents, publishers or anything like that.  It is both confusing and frustrating.

There are agents and publishers who know of me and like what little they know of me so far and they do try to send me prep talks from time to time, but really they know my situation too.  For the past several weeks I have been confined to my bed and house, my illness, whatever it is, is taking such a big toll on my body I can barely move these days.  So, I am fearful of many things because of this – as I spoke about yesterday, I am fearful of death.  I do fear that something has a tight grip on my body that maybe nobody will see the novels I have finished or half finished, the only thing the world will ever see is whatever I can manage to stick here on my blog. 

I am that sick that I am not even planning a future anymore.

Things should improve in about two or three years’ time, I don’t know why I have this idea that it will, because there is something at the back of my mind which keeps telling me that in 2023 everything will improve.  I don’t understand what it is, maybe it is the subconscious realisation that in three years’ time I will be forty and I have always heard people say and I have always believed it to be true as I have witnessed several women in my past, that life begins at forty.  So, maybe it is that, maybe it is something in the universe telling me it is just a health blip which will correct itself in three years’ time or maybe I am just being dumb.  But there is definitely something biting at me that my life will vastly improve by 2023.

 

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Happy New Year & update

Happy New Year everybody!

This is just an update on what has been going on with me;

Today has been the first day since the 21st December 2019 that I have been able to actually leave my bed for more than an hour, flu hit me hard and fast and without warning and then it turned as it always does into a chest and double ear bacterial infection. (I pre-scheduled some posts for the holidays in anticipation for this) I have been on antibiotics but there are still bubbles in my chest so, I may have to go back to the doctor again on Friday about that.  Thankfully my chest has not been as bad as it usually is this time of year and that could be down to the fact that I am taking care of myself better – I literally did confine myself to my bed all this time and have been drinking something akin to 3 litres of fluids a day to keep myself hydrated.  My vertigo and asthma has been bad though.

I should be much better by the end of next week if all goes well – which makes this illness thankfully short in duration.

There has been a suggestion that my post nasal drip and chest problems could be COPD, a friend is convinced I have to have this looked into.  I wouldn’t be surprised if it turned out to be that because my mother and other relatives have this condition, though I have never known them to be so severe for so long.

I am also convinced that the lumps I get in various parts of my body are not what my GP calls “folliculitis” at all, because these lumps come up within hours or a day or two before I get hit badly with infections, colds and flus, I told this to them but they seem to be smarmy enough to know more than I do about my bodies reactions!  Whenever I get badly sick, doctors are always surprised at how swollen I am everywhere, but still, the warning lumps as I call them are only folliculitis, not a sign of anything else at all.

Goodreads.com annual reading challenge I set myself for 2019 was 75 books and I managed to read 119 (and a half). 

Goodreads challenge this year for 2020 will be 104 books.  Which, health willing, I should be able to totally smash by August.

This illness is making me go off of food lately.  I am really begin to dislike food, I don’t enjoy it anymore and I don’t think it is just the illness as this has been coming on slowly for the last couple of months – but since this flu started I have virtually not wanted a thing at all.  I think I have lost a lot of weight in the past two weeks, my pyjamas are very big on me and there seems to be gaps in places I haven’t had in a while. 

I don’t normally watch a lot of TV but this illness has dictated that I have watched an average of 10 hours of TV per day since the 21st – watching a lot of stuff that has been giving me a lot of inspiration but unfortunately too tired to write most of them down.  Mostly I have watched Minions and Shrek, fantasy movies and wildlife documentaries.  I like the new BBC Dracula series that’s on this New Year, but then again it is vampires, why am I not surprised?

Over the past few months I have been lulling over two ideas based on the novel Dracula, which is unusual for me, as my vampires are usually unique characters designed purely by me, but these two particular ideas I have are entirely based on the original novel by Bram Stoker.

One idea of which is based on the viewpoint of Dr Van Helsing and it is based on the future rather than the past.  It is based on a post-apocalyptic world.

The other idea I have is based on the viewpoint of the three brides of Dracula, there is a big twist though with one of the brides, based on European history and so forth, so it is more than I let on.

A couple of days before the flu struck me down, I did more genealogical research on my family and found out I am a descendant of someone in history I have always particularly hated – typical isn’t it?  I found out I am descended as a 23rd great granddaughter to Ralph DeNeville through his daughter Philippa.  Since discovering this, I have been getting ideas based on these times as well, with a fantasy twist of course.  I have been thinking about writing alternative historical fantasy fiction.  I am very keen on history so I think I could make it come across very realistic, the thing is, I will not leave fantasy out of the equation, so there will be a lot of strangeness to the stories and quite possibly comedy.

There is a lot of history in my vampire novels, particularly around the Roman, Tudor, Renaissance and Victorian times, so I already have some skill writing about that. 

I don’t want to lose the concept of comic fantasy though, I have recently heard that comedy fantasy is very sought after and hardly anyone is taking the bait for it – so hopefully if I took myself more seriously as a writer, I should have an open market for what I have to offer.  I am not cocky enough to presume that it will be a doddle for me to get published at all, I really don’t believe I am all that great – despite what people have said to me, but the market is appears to be less crowded?

Well I can only hope in the least.  I nearly forgot to write those six stories I wanted to do for the magazine as well, I will get on that in the next couple of days – I have settled on a mermaid story for that as my first entry.

Happy New Year Everyone!

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Wandering in my mind (Wimm) 1

I am watching the mass of people that have gathered here today expecting something new and unique to show them.  They are watching me with patient curiosity as to where I will take them today, the man who is slightly balding in his mid-forties is grinning with anticipation and scratching gently his wrist around his watch and the beautiful auburn young lady in her early twenties beams at me and clasps her hands in front of her.  I shan’t disappoint them, or the many others besides.

There is an icy chill in the air, a large bonfire crackles in the moonlight behind me and I turn to it to add another log to the fire, a scent of lavender fills the air as a beautiful blond lady in blue silks and a medieval gown throws a large bundle of lavender into the fire.  We sit down, this lady and I, upon felled wood and I play upon a pear wood recorder as she begins to recite a poem sang in beautiful Latin about the coming of snow, it is a haunting piece which fills the gathered audience with solemn peace and nostalgia, though they don’t audibly understand the words she is singing, they can understand it by the lilt and chill of her voice along with the biting of the air around them.  The young lady with auburn hair is almost overcome by the power of the ladies voice and others take in deep sighs and close their eyes as they soak in the night air.

Men dressed in blue velvet and silver medieval court clothes pass around toasted vanilla flavoured marshmallows to the audience, a taste of warm sweet snow, a great paradox to the subject of the song.  The marshmallows fill the audience with hope of warmer climes to come, a glimpse that it shan’t be forever cold, that tonight is just an interim and those come and go quickly.

 

 

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Filed under Wandering In My Mind

New stuff to come

I had the notion that I didn’t want to put too much non-fiction in my blog and I really didn’t intend for as much poetry that I have either; it was supposed to be focusing on little snippets of practise writing and short stories of a fantasy theme only, well since the blog has started that hasn’t been the case has it?  So, I decided last night that it doesn’t matter what I post on my blog anymore, people love it for what it is and therefore there will be more posts coming in the future; particularly of new and different from current themes.  I have many interests in life other than writing and some of those things include writing, but they are usually personal snippets or parts of my personal diaries, thoughts, hopes and dream journals and that sort of thing.

So the blog may become a more active place that will include themes of positivity, spirituality, dreams, research papers and so forth.  A lot of the research papers will include mythologies from around the world and superstitions, as well as historical research.

Other than writing, my other hobbies include watercolour painting, wildlife photography, and organic/no-dig gardening (on good days), puzzles, word games, hypothetical discussions with people, reading, knitting, cosmic ordering and studying cultures, superstitions, mythologies and personal genealogy.  I also love learning languages and how they developed, the history of certain words and allergen free lifestyles.

So the future of this blog could be random, who knows?  But I have decided to write whatever I fancy and share it, because I want to be a more active writer that actually proves I really am an active writer!

I keep a lot of stuff I write to myself.  Little snippets about a person enjoying an apple, or peacefully sewing fat quarters to make a quilt, or sitting in a meadow watching clouds fly by; to things I have watched on television and have an opinion about, books I have read and how I felt about them and simple little daydreams of things I would love to do, but realistically may never do.  I have often thought about writing a book purely based on my daydreaming adventures and I did call this idea “The wandering in my mind” book.  But I have thought, the wandering in my mind could become blog posts called “The Wandering in my mind adventures part 1” and so on.  This idea is not a new one, I have had it since I was a teenager and it is not wholly new on this blog either.  I just didn’t take it as seriously for online media as much as I do now.

So yes, I think I will start that today.  The wandering in my mind adventures part one will be posted later on this evening.

I must warn you, it is always random and there are thousands of situations and people I imagine most of the time.  Living such an isolated life, sometimes the only way I can feel alive is by deep and long daydreaming sessions.

A sample of what you can expect would be…

Me mingling with vampires at a palace court, usually the same characters as I have built a sort of relationship with them in my mind.

Me wandering through various landscapes and coming across various wonderful plants and animals or situations;

Floating through space and seeing amazing things there.

Arguing with people about certain subjects and giving my side of the argument in full – these are fictional arguments that usually have a real life basis to them, such as climate change, current affairs, certain things going on worldwide, but there will always be a fantasy or horror twist to these daydreams.  For example, a few months ago, I personally demanded that the universe repairs Notre Dame immediately and proclaim a miracle, because it was a place I always wanted to see and the story of the Hunchback of Notre Dame always made me cry; particularly now he is homeless in my mind and all those poor little gargoyles.

I also travel in time arguing with Henry the VIII about various things and personally beating ten bells out of the Emperor Nero for what he did to Poppaea.

In other daydreams I am a whole new character in other writer’s books, where I am the personal pet owner of a Bandersnatch and a tyrannical next door neighbour to the Queen of Hearts, whilst eating jam sandwiches with the Duchess in the veranda of my garden, shouting insults over the rose bushes that divide our lands.

As I said the other day, it is scary in my mind.

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Worrying about probably nonsense!

Other than the time back in 2003 I have never approached a publisher or an author’s agent, nor have I ever entered any kind of creative competition, whether it be for art or writing; I have never joined a writers circle either.  I have never had any real formal education on writing and not much schooling throughout my childhood.  Everything about me and my creativity is 100% self-taught and badly taught too in my opinion!

I have no idea where all these punctuation marks really should be, I have no idea about my grammar or where a paragraph should start and end, really it is all either dumb luck or a right mess, I don’t know which it is.

I don’t have much confidence in the idea of becoming a successful writer, I have said before and it is very true, I am scared that I will let people down a lot because of my health issues.  In my personal life, I let people down almost all the time.  I am afraid that I will have people wanting to publish my work but will have second thoughts about it because the writer will be a no show for at least 50% of the promotions, book signings and interviews.  In my personal life my health is so bad that a simple two hour shopping spree can set me physically back by three days.  I have more than one auto-immunity problem working against me.

I know in my heart of hearts it is unrealistic for me to have what many people would call a “real job”, writing is a real job if you get published isn’t it?  Despite publishers and agents alike stating they are working towards having more underrepresented writers, how ready are they for those who are bed bound for 10 – 16 weeks of the year?  How patient would they be in dealing with such a writer who is also deaf, too deaf to use a phone and relies heavily on face to face lip-reading, text messages or a representative to take telephone calls?

This is what holds me back in approaching publishers.  My own realism. 

I really don’t want to be told “you have a lot of talent but you are not working hard enough to promote yourself or take yourself seriously, it is a shame you are so sick, you could have gone far”.  This has happened before to me, not in the writing industry, but other forms of work, which is why I rely on benefits.

Is this something I should even put in my covering letter to an agent?  I mean, come on, if it really is like any other job, then who the blazes would ever look at my work twice if they knew that I am that sick most of the time?

Am I being too defeatist as well as a pragmatist, maybe there is light at the end of the tunnel – who knows?  Maybe there is an agent out there who can push someone like me into the limelight and support me in spite of the health problems?

I am writing this for two reasons today.  One is the fact that there has been quite a few people contacting me in the past five years in my email and on private messages on twitter and other social media, who support my work with all their heart and has asked me to send them some of the work and I have not done this.  Many have become active cheerleaders in trying to get me to write regularly and to state how my poetry amongst other things has helped them and other people through hard times in their lives.  The thing is I am too polite to verbally let people down and I don’t like dragging up my health as an excuse all the time, even though that is the primary thing.    So I let it all slide.  I don’t want to do this, I really don’t.  I really want my books out there, I really want people to enjoy my worlds, because I have put my heart and soul into my worlds for a very long time, in some of the series I have written, two decades of blood, sweat and tears have gone into them!  I need to see my characters come to life through actors and actresses on the television as this is the main motivation for me writing.  I have always written the things I have because I have always wanted to see them on TV.  They are things I want to watch.  I am a huge supporter for acting and have always wanted to get into theatre and television myself, as a writer/screenwriter and eventually producer and I know with my health problems that may never happen.  When I was younger I loved going to the drama classes during lunch break and playing with my friends various roles.  I love playing and I believe acting is the only way an adult can still play pretend with their peers and not be considered insane or childish.  The course I was doing back then was after I had a breakdown, my mother was really worried about me so signed me up for a general vocational skills course to boost what she thought was my confidence.  It wasn’t a confidence issue I had, it was severe depression due to something that had happened to me which was nasty and as usual swept under the carpet by her and never spoken about to the family.

When I went to those drama classes, my creativity ran riot.  I became a writer for short plays that we would do at the college together, I also wrote rap songs for my beat boxing friends and joined what was known as a rock choir with my gothic friends, I was a Goth back then too.

I find it really easy to write songs and poetry, it comes very quickly to me and this amazed my friends in the creative scene.  I would literally sit on the table with my legs up, write on my knees a song of any subject they chose and give it to them to sing within ten minutes max, never revised either.  I do this with all poetry even now.  It comes and in a few minutes it is posted or printed and ignored.

If I had someone tell me that I am now a full time poet, I would freak out about the ink and paper I would use daily, because I literally could throw out 5 to 10 poems an hour.

Similar things happening too since I took up my recorder practise; I can play by ear and I have composed several tunes since first starting out.  I can compose a new tune in around 90 minutes and lyrics to go with that within 10 minutes.  I am learning well in how to read and write the recorder music now.  It’s winter now and my chest is playing up, so it’s likely the recorder is going to be put away until April now, which is a shame.

The second reason I posted this, is that I am considering entering a writing competition for the first time in my life.  The Writing Magazine (which I am subscribed to) has a competition which has sparked six story ideas in my head – however, I can only afford one entry.  The competitions requires an opening line which is this “They weren’t like me”, closing date February 15th 2020.  It is a subscriber’s only competition. 

I am running short of money and I hope there is enough ink in the printer, as it is unlikely I can afford more ink before Christmas.  I know me, the story I will choose will be done and dusted within a weekend, then it will rest a week, then I will redo it and it will be sent a month in advance.

Thousands of people will be entering this contest so I know that my chances are slim, but though I am a pragmatist I am also an optimist and I have as good a chance as anyone.  But what I want to know is… is this the sort of thing I put into a writer’s CV when approaching an agent?  If I win, I mean?

Anyway, just some food for thought!

Merry Christmas everybody if I don’t post again beforehand!

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Filed under About my work

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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Sunday Word Count 6

Sunday word count time!

Unfortunately I hit “The Wall of Shame” again with this amount of words done towards a novel this week.

7896 words

Well at least it is better than last weeks!

Here is how it is broken down.

25th August – 1564 words – not bad considering the week before I hardly wrote a thing per day.

26th August – 867 words – quite low about two pages.

27th August – 2919 words – excellent, I should have more days like this!

28th August – 832 words – hmm, low again.

29th August – 879 words – I am not happy with the way the novel is going if I have to be honest – which I do!

30th August – 835 words – low again, getting bored with this particular novel, so I probably may be like this for some time until this draft is complete then start again for the 6th attempt!

31st August – nothing – well I was getting bored and sometimes it’s best to step away if this happens for a small while and then get back to it at a later date.  But I had other ideas I was working on, so this day and the other low days really should have been filled up doing the other novels, not just concentrating on just this one and thinking about my new musical instrument all day!

So the summary is this, quite low word count with quite low quality writing for much of the week!

My excuses are;

There are no excuses for such poor quality word counts and writing other than the fact that I was bored with the one particular story I was working towards!  So, I should have moved onto another story that I am writing which captivates me better – which I did not do!

Why?

A new musical instrument entered the house on the 28th August and I fell in love with it.  I have never seriously learned an instrument before and this is one where I intend to seriously learn it – I have done approximately fourteen hours of self-taught (via YouTube) lessons since, this averages to three hours per day; plus I am trying to learn music theory and notation, something which I have never done before, trying to learn the names of the notes I am playing and how to read music so that I can eventually write music!

I have always had this desire in my life and it was never as strong as it is now. 

I thought if I don’t learn to read and write music now, then I probably never will and so I decided that never is NEVER going to happen! 

I write a lot of poetry, but I also write a lot of songs, the songs I rarely post on my blog and my brain has always taunted me with music that should go with the songs – it is getting torturous lately, to say the least, so this is why I have to learn music professionally.

I have always been like this with music, so it is astounding why my brain has to literally send me loopy in order to get me started on taking music more seriously.  I suppose I always used my left hand disability as an excuse?  “I can’t because my left hand, what if they want me to demonstrate the music”?  Whine, whine, and whine!

I started to practise by ear only when I was very small on my grandmother’s piano around the same time I started to learn to read and write – so music has been with me for a very long time, if not longer than writing!

I am excited by learning musical notation because I have learned that each musical instrument has the same basis and therefore once I learn where the notes are for each instrument I have previously played I could in fact learn the same tunes on every instrument.  I don’t know musical jargon yet, but I am getting there!

The types of music that are in my head vary in genre from mostly classical, jazz and rock but especially classical!  I hear so often these days that “classical music has no future” and I really want to stick my middle finger up at people who say that!  I believe it does and if anything it is hearing this regularly which has spurred on my insanity to prove them bloody wrong!

In fact I am under exaggerating here, I am practically getting psychotic about showing people they are wrong about classical music becoming a dying force in the world.

I do have some music still available from my old floppy disks from 2000 that I composed by ear on Cubase with my keyboard, I don’t know if my computer or modern technology can upload it here on the blog successfully, but I think I will try!

I think I will upload my storm music.  Or try.

Unfortunately it doesn’t work here, sorry – I tried.  MP3 floppy 20yrs old, don’t know how to convert that, can anyone comment below if they know how – please?  

Also and I don’t mean to pick on the poor chap, but Henry doesn’t go back to school until the 3rd of September, so perhaps my writing will improve from then onwards?  If it doesn’t then I am a rotten mother who uses her kid as an excuse, which I think I am that anyway!  Talking of which Henry been trying to get me to become music teacher for him, despite it being the lame leading the lame at the moment, lol.  He hasn’t the patience to learn for more than 15 to 30 minutes a day like I do.  He is too addicted to Robot Wars, Ryan’s toy review and now WWE wrestling!

I wanted to say that the writing I am clocking up every week is purely towards novels I am working on, it is not research notes, synopsises, plans, blog posts, daily pages like 750words.com or anything else that I might be working on – so I don’t have lazy writer syndrome, if you are interested in seeing just how much I do write per day, let me know in the comments below and I will give you an entire summary of all my work in just one week and one week only! 

Anyway, those are my excuses for this week and I am sticking to them!

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Sunday Word Count 5

I have hit the wall of shame again.

The word count this week is…

4447

The above picture was taken by me and manipulated by me.  I took this image around 2yrs ago in the Summer when I went for a walk by the canal near Newbold Quarry, Warwickshire.  The daisy like flower was actually growing out of the crack in the wall just like that, sticking out of the wall about 8 inches on a single stalk.  It was strange because the whole area had just grass and dock leaves and there was no other little white flowers like this anywhere else!  

A huge slump, but then again, this week I have had a hard time with my immunity issues and other medical problems including a huge bout of unexplained depression, usually I can identify what causes the depression but for the past few days I cant.

I only wrote on three days, which were Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

My body also hasn’t been working properly either, making me feel extra sleepy and my arms aren’t working properly for some reason.

Sorry this is a lazy post because I am so tired still.  Sorry if it looks like I really can’t be bothered, I want to be, but I just can’t think at the moment, too drowsy.

I get bouts like this that happen on and off at irregular and without a pattern times and it can last for just a day or several days, I had a bout once that lasted for nearly 4 months, doctors aren’t too helpful in trying to find out what the blazes is wrong with me.

I accidentally posted something that I had second mind to delete too, sorry about that.  I didn’t want to post it as it was a first draft and there were certain things I missed out or didn’t explain properly.  It was written on a very bad day, I get huge brain fogs and concentration problems where things come out wrong or half formed.  

Anyway, hope next week will be different.

Have fun with your writing folks!

P.S I apologise if this is at all incoherent, I am really struggling right now.  

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