Welcome to my writers blog.

Writing to entertain and encourage other writers. To keep you informed of events, workshops, retreats and conferences available for writers.

The Love of Dance

Friday, 29 May 2015

This week has seen more change. I have finished work with one employer and will be starting a new job on Monday with another. I'm looking forward to all the new challenges that come my way and hopefully, if the brain is willing, developing new skills. Exciting times.

On the writing front I received a rejection for one of my manuscripts and as there are no critique points given. This is more often than not the case, agents don’t have time to comment on work they aren't in love with, however, this obviously doesn't help the writer. There are editorial houses like Cornerstones or the wonderful ‘Writers Workshop’ who give guidance, a community of writers and are organisers of the amazing Festival of Writing in York.  I will be submitting again soon once I have researched another few agents. It’s all about finding the right fit for the manuscript. I know there is an agent out there somewhere who will love it as much as I do or will be willing to work with me if there are flaws that I'm not seeing. Either way, I will keep going.

Windmill Writers is slowly growing, some very keen writers, those new to writing and those who have much work to do, but have the determination to go for publication. We are all learning. Even those of us who have been working at our craft for years are still acquiring new skills. It is great to have a proactive team of writers around you when you are unsure if a scene is working.

For this week’s writing prompt I have been out and about. I took the photograph below on Sunday evening and thought it might just conjure up some interesting thoughts as a prompt. 

There are no rules for this task. Write what you feel. You might like to try a stream of writing, just start with one thought and keep going until any following thoughts falter and ebb away to nothing. Or try a different genre or writing style.

So go on, get writing. 

Friday, 22 May 2015

Writing Dilemma

There is so much going on at the moment. I've made some big decisions on the work front, but still have some decisions to make regarding my writing direction. I've been working on my adult thrillers and also my children’s manuscripts. I am stuck between continuing writing both or to drop one for the other. My problem is that I've had great feedback from agents/book doctors/editors on all of them. I am struggling to decide. I've been told to write the thing that appeals most and therein lies the problem, my head is full of each of them I love writing both genres – it is a quandary! Anyone who knows my writing, feel free to help me by posting either Children’s or Thrillers or both.

I've just ordered my new writing business cards for my children’s writing from Vista Print I didn't have an image so I had a look on www.freevector.com and found a beautiful image showing a book with many objects coming out of it, called: Everyone has their fantasy by Lovelymaa Avian’s Creations. If you are looking for an image it is a great place to go. I have put a credited the illustrator on my business card and have spread the word here and on twitter. I already have cards for my thrillers which I sorted out last year. This is all in the hope that one day, I will find that allusive agent and publishing deal. Can you tell I like to be prepared? 
Okay enough about me I have selected the following image for you to use as your writing prompt.

You need to include the following words:
Regret – laughter – tranquillity – storm – broken
How you craft this piece of writing is up to you, but think about who your audience might be. Dare I suggest that you find a magazine to focus you writing and then submit your work?

So go on, get writing. 

Sunday, 17 May 2015

The Roller-coaster Ride of Writing.

The love of crafting characters and throwing them into your plot is the passion that great books are made of, but getting to that stage is a convoluted road to travel. The level plains are to be used lightly, giving way more often than not for the undulating roller-coaster that is the conflict and resolution within the writing. Getting the balance right is the challenge.

‘Slow it down!’ I have often heard that when writing some of my scenes and yes, once I’d gone back and worked on those sections the story did benefit from reducing the pace giving the reader a moment to breathe. Pace is great, but be cautious don’t over use it. However, don’t slow the work down too much or the reader will get bored – it is a balancing act, get it right and your writing will engage your reader throughout.

My current WIP is coming along nicely and the opening which had much attention required to change it completely, is almost done. I think the end is right and once I’ve finished jigsawing the old and new together, I believe it will flow as it should and be ready to share by the end of the year, if not sooner.

The Windmill Writers are a proactive group. The material they are creating, sharing and critiquing varies from writer to writer. Everyone is at a different sage with their work and voices are developing nicely. A group like this isn’t for everyone, but if you are passionate about improving your art, honing your skills and sharing you knowledge with others, then a writing group might be for you. No one likes having their work scrutinised, but by sharing in this way, major and minor areas that need re working are spotted. Of course it is up to the author to make the changes or not. One area that keeps coming up is the dreaded ‘Show not Tell’. We all do it and sometimes don’t notice it until we read out aloud. Or the over use of certain words. And of course there are the missing ‘Bells & Smells’ as I like to call them. A writing group worth its name won’t sit and say, oh my, that is delightful, they will get to the nitty-gritty and as an author that is what you should be looking for – constructive criticism which will help you hone your work.

For the writing prompt this week, please look at the image below and create a piece of writing which best shows your own writing skills for the art of description. 

Think about what smells, and sounds you might experience. What does the weather feel like, is the sun hot, warm or is there a cold wind lapping around your ears? Think about the setting. Is this a romantic setting of two lovers, or a lonely moment for a singleton? Who is looking out on the scene in front of them? Perhaps you could try your hand at poetry. Whatever you decide to do enjoy your writing time as that will show in your end piece.

So go on, get writing. 

Friday, 8 May 2015

Writing festivals, conferences and days.

Writing conferences or festivals are great places to give you creative juices a boost or inject a bit of creativity to help you find or improve your writing skills and hone your craft. The networking is amazing and you get the opportunities to spend time with agents, editors and book doctors along with workshops, lectures and so much more.

Below you will find in date order three conference/ festival/ day opportunities. Take a look and book your place. 

Winchester Writers' Festival.
If you are looking to get inspiration or inject a stream of creativity into your writing or you feel you have begun to flag, then why not take a look at the Winchester Writers' Conference which is running from the 19th - 21st June 2015. A weekend with Friday evening and Sunday morning workshops where you sit and write with like minded people. Check out the link here: Winchester Writers' Festival

The Festival of Writing, 2015. York.

The Festival of Writing - York, is now open for bookings for the 4th - 6th September 2015. This is the biggest of the conferences and one of the busiest. I suggest booking early so as not to miss the opportunity to bag a place. Emerse yourself in the world of writing. Learn your craft, hone your skills and network along with attending workshops, experience the One-to-One's with agents, editors, book doctors and publishers. Network through breakfast, lunch and dinner along with the evening social events and bar where many contacts are made. There is so much to do here and if you're lucky, you will get time to write. Take a look at the link here:  Festival of Writing YORK

Get Writing Day is a one day writing experience on the 26th September 2015 which offers many of the options above but with fewer agents/editors or book doctors than the bigger conferences. However, this is a great event to get your work critiqued, network and develop your writing skills, have face time meetings and much more. It attracts many delegates and the VWC have many published authors within their fold to help and guide budding authors. Take a look at their link: Get Writing Day - Watford 

So go on, take a look and book, what are you waiting for. 

Saturday, 2 May 2015

How did we get to May so quickly? I know I’ve been very busy, but my goodness I have been lax.

There are many reasons for this, which I can’t go into here well at least not yet, but I have been writing and editing with two WIPs. I'm loving getting my head down and manipulating characters and reworking previously completed manuscript. It was two weeks ago when I went to the Windmill Writers, in Chipperfield, Hertfordshire, that I read out a scene I loved, but really didn't take the story any further. I had to cut it out and exchange it for a couple of sentences. This works much better and gives scope for a more character driven script. The more I rip out the better the story arc appears.

I am currently working of submissions for a publishing house for which I'm hoping to get some further guidance before submitting. If not, I’ll submit what I have and hope that all is correct. I can’t let this opportunity pass me by. Tomorrow will be yet another busy morning of finishing touches to the submissions and then… off they go. Always hoping for a positive result.

The writing tasks for this week are listed below. Select one, two or three or perhaps you can do all three.
  • Use all the words listed here in one piece of writing. Blade – Pasture – Vixen – Haze – Gum and Drawer.
  • Use the following sentence as the opening to a piece of writing. The shadows shivered with fear and there was little anyone could do.
  • Use the image as inspiration to write a piece of creative writing.

I hope the above inspire you imagination to write and remember these prompts are here to get you thinking out of your comfort zone – try something new.

So go on, get writing.