An Honest Update

When I first started this blog I promised to hide nothing about my journey to getting published, my ultimate goal with my writing. And I haven’t hidden anything but it certainly is time for an update and also for me to be brutally honest about it.

8 word story

My 8 Word Story

Firstly the exciting things. Last week my 8 word story was selected as part of the Queensland Writers Center #8WordStory campaign. It appeared on billboards in several different locations in Brisbane and was a time of epic excitement for me. I mean, my story was on a BILLBOARD! What’s not to get excited about it? The campaign is still going and if you would like to participate or find out more you can by clicking here.

I also became part of the Her Heart community as a features contributor. You can catch me over there on a Thursday and by clicking here. The Her Heart community is mainly for poets but it is also for people who are writing short stories and simply writing in general. That’s where I come in, because although I write some poetry, it is most definitely not my forte. While you’re there, check out some of the poems on the site and the other articles. I promise you, if you have a love for the written word it’s worth your time.

Now to the not so good. I am seriously procrastinating with editing Balance. So much so that I signed up for NaNoWriMo to avoid it. If you are unaware of what NaNoWriMo is, it’s when people attempt to write 50 000 words during the month of November. That’s 1667 words a day, everyday for a month. People usually end it a bit crazy eyed and their family and friends wondering what happened. But it’s good because it forces a commitment from you in regards to your writing and you quickly learn what works for you in terms of getting words written.

But now I’m sort of slacking on that front because I want to edit Balance. I’m writing, but its very half hearted. I’m editing and it’s all over the shop, done in fits and starts. Then there’s the little side projects I half have going. As you can probably guess from this, my mind is all over the place and that’s affecting my creativity. I’m having a tremendous amount of trouble focusing on one thing and finishing it to conclusion. Yes, I know for some people working on several projects at once works, but I have too many happening and I’m half assing them.

Whew, that wasn’t as hard to admit as I thought it would be. Now what to do about it? Firstly I’m taking time out. I have a weekend away happening (by the time you’re reading this it will have just finished), and I’m not writing, drawing or doing anything remotely creative. Instead I’m focusing on my family and having a good time. We all need it and my hope is that when we get back we’ll all be refreshed and ready to tackle the rest of the year.

Then I’m going to gracefully bow out of NaNoWriMo. Now is not the time to start a new story. As much as I find the story concept I’ve come up with fascinating, I need to concentrate and finish the one I’ve already started. I plan to finish going through it scene by scene and decided what is working, what needs fixing and what needs to be scrapped altogether.

So that’s my honest update. Yeah, it’s not all sunshine and roses (freaking wish it was), but that’s largely due to me. Time to step it up and charge forward. Have a happy and creative week everyone 🙂

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Noticeable Improvement

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Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

I had cause the other day to go back through my previous blog posts. In all honesty this is not something I really do. I kind of release my posts into the world and only think about them again when someone makes a comment. But I’m glad I did it, for it showed me something. I have grown and improved with my writing. Feelings of giddiness and mortification rolled through me as I realised that other people more than likely had picked up on this as well.

However, this is why it is so important to start writing today. Don’t wait for the perfect time because you will undoubtedly improve the more you write so therefore no time will ever be perfect.

I’ve heard from a few different writers (published and unpublished) that the first few novels you write will suck and you need to get them out to get to the good ones.  I had my doubts about this but after looking at my previous posts I can see their point. And yes, part of me cringes in regards to my old posts. But part of me is also proud that I have visible evidence of improving my craft. It’s a heady feeling, the one of improvement.

Now this isn’t to say that your writing isn’t fantastic on the first go around (there are some rare folk out there that can do this and I’m insanely envious of them) but nearly everyone will improve the more they do something. Practice does not nessecarily make perfection but it does help. So practice, practice, pactice! Poems, short stories, novels, whatever form strikes your fancy at the time, do it, it will all help. And then, after awhile, you can look back and see the improvement. Do not underestimate how good that feeling is. It will sustain you when self-doubt creeps in, as it usually does with writers.

Go forth and write people and don’t worry about how good/bad your writing is, just worry about improving it.

Have a happy and creative week everyone 🙂