Friday, 24 May 2013

Your intuition knows what to write...

Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way.”
Ray Bradbury

Sorry for not having blogged in a while. Everything is manic at the moment. Whilst I struggle with Under The Coconut Tree (Albeit the first draft is now complete) I have been completing an Author Questionnaire requested by my publishers. At this point I would like to say what the questions are etc. But I am not sure exactly how much I can say. And really I don’t want to p*** anyone off. So I’ll give you the gist of it.

Its basically a questionnaire about you (I guess so they can write the about the author page) and information about your inspiration etc that they can use in marketing. All in all it was a good questionnaire. I would definitely fill it out for other books I have written. It really made me see what the main themes were in The Bittersweet Vine. You see I wanted to write a couple of press releases prior to release and I was struggling to come up with a good theme for an article. Since filling out the questionnaire I have three or four which I can pick from. The main ones are sibling rivalry, trust and domestic abuse and bullying. Not that Bittersweet is about Domestic abuse but when you do read it you will see what I am on about.

Another thing on my list of things to do is that I  need to sit and have a (mental) chat with my characters for Chupplejeep. I think if I do that I will get some really three dimensional characters.

I have also started writing Living the Dream – which is now called Poison in the Water. Basically I had to chop out 5000 of the 10,000 words written. I don’t know when I started writing it but what I had written was not good. I think its sometimes harder to work with a clunky bit of old writing than to just start from scratch. Anyway, the minute I finished UTCT (1st Draft- and after batting with spell check on word for mac) I started Poison in the Water. Disaster! I needed a break really. I started getting quite irritable and confused. So I am having a bit of a writing break at the moment. Which gives me the opportunity to sign up for my writing course! Well the grammar one. I know I keep putting it off but I guarantee I will have joined by the end of the month. The thing is I was hoping to do some of the exercises at work during lunch hour – but I’m so busy at work at the moment I tend to be working during lunch hour. My brain feels frazzled but I know how important it is so… I am going to bite the bullet.

I also set myself a lifetime writing goal of writing ten books. Because the other day I realised there is no urgency to write like a crazy person. I thought that if I write ten books before I die that will be enough. Of course I can write more, but ten is a real writer (in my eyes- although this is highly flawed look at Harper Lee). I am including Indian Diaries in this list. Where is Indian Diaries? Yes that kindle book of flash fiction which was supposed to be released in April… My dearest friend who is collaborating on the project with me still is going through the stories. I have told her to take her time especially as I wanted to finish UTCT so I am expecting to complete the first draft of Indian Diaries shortly. I have also found a decently priced editor for the book which is good.

Someone also mentioned to me that ‘Eats Shoots and Leaves’ is excellent for punctuation and so I have purchased it. It can be another lunch timepasstime (When I have the time) as I am edging towards the end of ‘A Brief History of Art.’ I think by book 5 my punctuation will be pretty good. Well I hope so.

I have also recently started reading Maria’s Room. A book set in Goa – but it isn’t really my cup of tea. I also bought the The Girl who Played with Fire (Steig Larson) and The Secret Keeper (Kate Morton) and Only The Innocent (Rachel Abbot). I feel bad that I bought them all from Amazon because although I love Amamzon I did say I would support our high street shops so that’s it from Amazon unless they are self-published or e-books.

I also realised that I no longer (or maybe I never did) look at publishing houses of authors when looking for a book to read (as opposed to research). This is an interesting fact which makes me think perhaps most readers don’t. I mean stop and think about the last five books you bought and the reasons behind why you did it. The publisher rarely comes into it. So really why are we so hung up on publishers? Just a thought. On that theme we had an interesting discussion about self publishing in our writing group. The main reason for using a publisher is that it is less hassle, they do most of the leg work and it is free. There was discussion on whether you would ever see your book in the glass windows at book shops and someone sent through this interesting article about book shops charging for book display in store. Stands to reason- don’t supermarkets do this based on sales?

Anyway it makes for interesting reading.

I also found an interesting article on how to make Google analytics work for you. (Although H has still not added the HTML or whatever it is to my site)

Anyway that’s enough from me. The next time I blog I am hoping to have the release date for The Bittersweet Vine (Fingers crossed they don’t change the name) and perhaps an update on Poison in the water!

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