Saturday, 26 November 2011

Feeling Like a Fake...

I love my social networking sites. I love all the new writers and readers I've been introduced to through twitter and facebook, and all the new authors I've met and great reads I've discovered. Blogging has been a great way to meet other writers and I think all of the advice and tips I pick up on various sites or through other authors have helped my writing and promotional skills no end.

However, there are times when reading about how other authors work really makes me doubt myself. I read about authors who start with twenty-page outlines before they even write the first line. There are others who divide their stories into sub-plots and themes, and edit accordingly. There are more who understand every single grammar faux pas there is to know!

For me, I simply write the story as I go. Sometimes I don't even write the story in the right order; I just write the scenes that are shouting loudest to me at that time and re-jig it all around later! I started this month's NaNoWriMo with a single page of roughly scribbled notes and I haven't even stuck to that!

I know every writer writes in a different way, but there are definitely times when I wonder if I really have any clue if I know what I'm doing. I read all about how organised other authors seem to be, plotting every step of the way, when I've really no idea what my characters are going to do from one chapter to another, and I do get intimidated. The problem is, I honestly wouldn't know where to start when it came to plotting a novel. How are you supposed to write down what's going to happen, when it hasn't actually happened yet!

So what about you? Are you a writer? Can you not live without everything going exactly the way you planned it, or do even the super-organised find that their characters lead them astray sometimes? Is there anything out in the social networking world that leaves you doubting your own ability?

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

A New Release - 'The Company of the Dead'!

Hi lovely people! Today is release day for my latest collection of short stories, 'The Company of the Dead'! It's currently only available through Amazon, but will shortly be on Smashwords and then the other eBook stores in a couple of weeks.

This collection is most definitely of the horror variety. Here's the blurb...

A teenage girl living with a horrific birthmark down one side of her face discovers the cure may be worse than the affliction in ‘Stained’. 
A team of men digging the channel tunnel hit a coffin-like box buried deep under the ocean. Will opening it unleash the end of mankind? ‘The Tunnel’.
A drug addict wakes to find herself trapped in a room of her worst nightmare, in ‘The Tortured Room’.
A young girl suffering abuse at the hands of her father find solace in a porcelain doll, but the doll is out for revenge, in ‘Adeline’.
A woman suffering the loss of her husband in a car accident discovers her reality isn’t all it seems in ‘The Sickness of Grief’.
A hitchhiker gets the lift from hell in ‘Thumbing it.’

Six short stories of horror; ghosts, vampires and demonic dolls. This collection total 25K in length or approximately 65 pages. Several of these stories have been previously published in the anthologies, ‘Masters of Horror: Damned if you Don’t’; ‘Their Dark Masters: Extreme Vampire Horror’; ‘Demonic Dolls: Satan’s Toybox’. 

It's now available to buy from Amazon for only $2.99, so just click on the link here for your copy!

Monday, 14 November 2011

NaNoWriMo - Almost at the Halfway Mark!

Hi fellow NaNoWriMo peeps. How is November treating you? Are you racing on ahead with an amazing word count that makes your counterparts turn green with envy, or are you, like me, playing catch up?

So far, this month's been a difficult one for me. I've had the whole family down with a sickness bug, I've had our second car written off which means I've had to cut back on childcare for my youngest, and I've had no internet for a few days (although that last one probably helped my word count!). But hey, we've all got lives going on outside of the madness that is NaNo and the glorious idea of holing ourselves up inside our offices, bashing away at our computers with no interruptions from the outside world simply doesn't happen.

This morning I'm at 21K and I'm aiming to hit 23K (or just short of) by the end of the day. For those who don't know, my NaNo project is the third book in my 'Serenity Series', 'Captured'. Because I plan to have this book out in the first quarter of next year, it's been important for me to make sure the book is in good shape the first time round. I haven't turned off my 'inner editor' as much as I did last year, but I think this is a good thing. I want to have 50K at the end of the month that I'm not going to need to edit 25K out of! For me, writing 25K of fluff simply isn't good time management!

'Captured' will be the last in the 'Serenity Series' but I am planning a YA spin-off series, using one of the characters from the 'Serenity' books. The first book has the working title 'Enchanted' and will be all things witchy! I've not written YA before so I'm hoping to hook up with some fellow YA writers as crit partners. I'll need to find my YA voice and release my inner angsty teen (believe me, she was never far beneath the surface, and I was the epitome of the angsty teen when I was younger). It's going to take some hard work on my part but I'm looking forward to trying something new. Who knows where a new direction will take me and  stretching my skills will only help make me a better writer.