Friday, 31 January 2014

If you do not breathe through writing...

If you do not breathe through writing, if you do not cry out in writing, or sing in writing, then don’t write, because our culture has no use for it. Anaïs Nin
Hurrah January is nearly over! I normally hate January. I mean what’s to like – it’s cold, it’s dark it’s miserable. I’m usually broke from the year before and carrying a bit of Christmas weight making my muffin top look like a pound cake. However, this year January has not been so bad. It has been rather pleasant- a bit long and a bit rainy – but nevertheless at least there was no snow.

I have ordered and now received 500 bookmarks split over two designs from Stress Free Print (the designs are fab and not that I’m bragging but I designed them myself (didn’t want to but really I had no choice- H was indisposed and I was impatient as usual- both for Bittersweet) and I plan to target some reading groups with these as I said in one of my last posts. I have to say as an author looking for places to print (cheapish) bookmarks I really struggled. Then I came across Stress free Printing but I was dubious because you have to pay before you can see how your art work will look. Anyway with no other alternative I bit the bullet and I can say that I am super pleased with the product. They told me that they didn't think the quality of my image was great – I wasn’t sure so they sent me a free printed proof. It looked fine to me (clearly my standards are not as high) and after I approved this I received them (free delivery) in a couple of days. A great service. I am impressed. I went for a thicker card at 350gsm but actually I think 300gsm would have been sufficient for promo bookmarks.

I even had a press release printed in The Ocelot magazine in January about Bittersweet. I will put it up on The Bittersweet page of this blog and it should appear on my website soon. In fact my whole website needs an overhaul. I must pester H. It doesn't show well on tablets and mobiles which is a must these days so I need to rectify that. I also received an email from my publicist at Thames River Press telling me to get tweeting. So Tweeting (in particular lines from Bittersweet) I must do. If you are not following me already – please do so @marissadeluna

I am also closer to completing Under the Coconut Tree although it is a long way from print! It will be going to a new writing group I have joined (well a sub group of my exiting group – where we critique full manuscripts- yes I know I am a geek)

And joy o joy I will be starting to edit Poison inthe Water in Feb! It’s a meaty book (think 87,000 words at first draft) spanning Celeste Renshaw’s life (protagonist) from the time she goes travelling through her tumultuous relationships and out again the other side. I have sectioned it into three parts, which I think works quite well. When I started writing about it I wasn't sure that I actually liked where it was going but actually – after an epiphany in the car on my way to London one Friday evening I realised what a good book it could actually be! It has therefore transformed. Much of the book is set in a therapists office where Celeste looks back on where she started and how her life turned out. I think this book is really going to touch hearts and lives and of course it is a thriller so there will be  a lot of suspense and of course a twist you wont see coming – that’s if I get through the editing process. I am being a bit less gung ho this year and planning to finish a first edit and a deep clean edit by the end of April. That should give me enough time to do a couple more edits in time to get it to my publishers in July! Oh how I hate editing. Well hate is a strong word. It’s a love-hate thing. I love it sometimes. Its nice to get stuck into a project- make it better- make it work- enjoy adding bits here and there which will surprise the reader, leave chapter endings on cliff hangers and add many twists to the tale. But geez it’s laborious and painstakingly slow. So much so that half the time you want to chuck the manuscript out of the window!

Anyway – what else have I been up to? Well for one I have realised just how good Mslexia is! It’s a website for women who write and I will shortly be subscribing to their magazine. They just have fab tips and workshops on their site (even if you don’t subscribe). It is definitely worth a look if you get the chance.  I also note that tickets are on sale for TheOxford Literary Festival. There is a good session on Indian writers which I may go to- given The Chupplejeep Msyteries. And The Chip Lit Festival is also on (Chipping Norton) in April. There is a great line up and one particular event where they will be comparing crime fiction to fact with a real life forensic! I so want to go to this, but I think it clashes with something else I have planned. Perhaps I will have to rely on the shed load of forensic, criminology and forensic psychology books I have ordered! Anyway take a look at what they have to offer.

And finally that course on learning how to punctuate I must enrol…. 

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