Saturday, 31 December 2011

New Year's Resolutions, ROW80, and Kindles

So it’s New Year’s Eve and the year will turn over to 2012 in a little under 4 hours. For the last month or so I’ve been busy with my temporary work contract and have very sadly neglected this blog. With the new year though I figured that I’d sort out this grave error and let you know what has been going on in my life.
To be frank I’ve spent most of this month in a creative rut. I’ve had a few sparks of inspiration now and then but I’ve completely lacked any actual drive to write or create anything. This has all changed in the last few days with the advent of Christmas and the end of my contract pulling into sight. I’m bubbling with ideas and thoughts, all of them brewing in my mind and slowly forming into one plot. Once my temporary contract is up I’m planning to get as many of these down as I can.

Now though I turn onto my New Year’s Resolutions. I have several resolutions, some that are easily measurable, others are a bit more vague and simply end results or basic ideas.
  • ·         Learn French
  • ·         Quit smoking
  • ·         Return to my size 10/12 shape
  • ·         Finish NaNo novel and edit.
  • ·         Plot and possible start three more novels
  • ·         Learn to drive
  • ·         Restart Witchan with a 10 page buffer.
  • ·         Decide on an alternative career path
  • ·         Make three queries regarding my novel a month.
  • ·         Read 200 new books
Simple really. Some of these things are linked together obviously while others are a bit more individual and stand alone. When I think back to this time last year I remember how little idea I had of where my life was going. I didn’t have a clue about what I wanted to do with my life or anything. I still don’t. I figure that if you pretend to know what you want eventually you’ll begin to believe you know what you want. So that’s what I’m going to do. I know some things that I want so I’m going from there and hope that eventually I’ll figure out the rest. 

I have signed up for another writing thing, something called A Round Of Words in 80 Days. It’s a new writing challenge I stumbled across that is designed for people with hectic lives and lets you set your own goals to reach in 80 days. I’ve got to set my own goals for the first round which begins on Monday. I’ve not got many thoughts, having only just signed up but my first thoughts for goals are
  • ·         Write 500 words a day for the NaNo novel.
  • ·         Create one art piece a week.
  • ·         Preliminary planning for one new novel.
These goals are more short term than my New Year’s Resolution and more measurable. Hopefully they’ll continue to give me the creative push I need for a shorter amount of time throughout the year.

Finally. I have gotten a Kindle. I read so much that my dad has decided it’d be cheaper and take less room to have my books digitally than it would to have them in print. I’ve already got many books on it, in a variety of genres, and I am adding more, pretty much every time I finish a new one. I stumbled across an amazing series, written by a woman called Mira Grant. It’s known as the Newsflesh Trilogy. I have found it incredibly interesting and I’m eagerly waiting for the third in the series which is due out in May. There are constantly twists and turns that constantly surprise me. It’s a series based in both the political intrigue genre and the zombie genre. I know, I know, I love me some zombies. Newsflesh is different from most of the zombie novels I read. Grant doesn’t focus as much on the actual outbreak and how it takes over the world, she leaves that to the short stories that are due out soon. Mostly she focuses on after and the zombies aren’t as important, they’re simply a tool of the political plots and an obstacle for the protagonists to overcome. I can’t really talk about the trilogy much more, not without ruining the plot for anyone who’s not read it and not until I’ve finished reading it. Once I’ve managed to get hold of and finish the last book I may well put up a review. Here’s hoping.

Well, my darling readers, I look forward to telling you all about my creative endeavours come the New Year and hopefully I’ll be able to keep to my resolutions. What are your resolutions? Do you think I’ll be able to keep mine?

Of course, Happy New Year!!

Monday, 5 December 2011

The End of NaNoWriMo and Amsterdam.

So NaNoWriMo is now over. It was a fantastic month and I learned so much about how I write and what I want from my life. It’s helped me to realise that I do really want to become a professional writer. I still haven’t finished my novel but there’s more than I’ve ever written before. For that I am glad and hope to finish the novel before the New Year. I’m definitely going to try at least...
                I’m all ready to sign up next year and I am also seriously considering signing up for ScriptFrenzy. In fact my NaNoWriMo username means that I’m able to take part already and I’m already thinking hard about what to work on for it. It’s a month of script-writing. I could work on the Witchan web-comic script or even a short story script for a short web-comic. Either way it’s do-able. The great thing is that the weekly meetings also return during those months so I’ll get the spurring on that I need. There’s also NaNoMangO in June or November which gives the opportunity to draw the pages for April’s scripts. While there’s always the chance that my life could take another direction at any point between these dates, I’m putting them in my diary come January 1st and really hope to take part in them. I’ll probably explain about these in the New Year.

                I had a very lovely weekend since Friday afternoon. I took a trip to Amsterdam, partially as an early Christmas present from my mum and also partially as a reward for finishing NaNoWriMo. It truly is a beautiful city and I have several plans in the future to visit it again. I’m even considering getting a TEFL certificate and heading there to teach English for a while. A TEFL qualification would more than likely give me the opportunity to travel to all those places that I want to go to, whether it’s Romania or the USA or Paris. A TEFL qualification will give me the option of going to all those places and earn a wage while I see the sights. But back to Amsterdam...
                There is much more to the city than just the ‘coffee shops’ and the red light district. It’s a beautiful city full of amazing buildings and a rich history. I just felt so inspired walking around, I barely did any shopping, even when we did actually accidentally find the red light district. For some odd reason myself and my mum kept stumbling on the more local Dutch bars when we went somewhere for a drink but they were absolutely lovely. The canals... wow! That’s really all I can say about them. Even the quiet ones where there was very little traffic were still gorgeous. Many house were built right up against the banks of the canals and they were so high with beautiful windows and facades. It’s on my list of places to go back to, eventually.
                The crossing however was not that nice. On the way there I’d been drinking a fair bit and the cross winds across the North Sea were sending the ferry bouncing around horribly. That did not end well the next morning when my hangover hit. Thankfully we docked shortly after and were off to Amsterdam within an hour. Walking around the city helped me feel much much better as well as the delicious Argentinean food that we were able to find. I realised that getting up and eating slightly really does help a hangover rather than sitting around feeling sorry for youself.

                Well that’s it for tonight, I’ll probably be returning to regular topics next week, in the meantime, have fun and keep writing even though NaNo’s over.