Insecure Writer’s Support Group -June

I am writing this blog post on the toilet. Not as disgusting as it may sound, the lid is down and I’m fully clothed. It is however, currently the only place in the house with space, light and a sense of privacy. It also helps that I’m dying my hair and therefore have an excuse to hog the only room in the house with a lockable door for the best part of an hour.

Such dire straits!

The boy and I are decorating the bedroom. Have been for two months which is the price I have to pay for falling in love with a man who is both a perfectionist and a serial weekend lie inner.  The knock on effect of this is that the bedroom is in the living room so the table cannot be used, and as he is still sleeping in the bed in the living room I can’t hang out there.  We do have a study true, but we do not talk about the study.

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Oh woe is me. A lack a day!

The good news is that we do have a pub that serves breakfast literally on the other side of the road.  This coming weekend I am going to try and continue my year of doing scary things by taking a fully charged lap top over there at nine in the morning to write. Tune in then to see if I make it.

In the mean time I am still tapping creatively away at my keyboard so this month could have been so much worse.

How’s everyone else doing? I’ll be round to check on as many of you as I can before I need to rinse.

If you want to share your insecurities check in with Alex J. Cavanaugh at the Insecure Writer’s Support

 

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Insecure Writer’s Support Group – May

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In an attempt to progress into world of grown up writer I’ve been writing a business plan. It’s surprisingly cathartic to set out some goals with the (current) intention of sticking to them. Of course. It has also made me realise exactly how much work is involved.

 

Well, I knew that already. Putting it down in black and white however makes it more real. More huge.

 

I’m also having a lot of trouble getting past the end of this year. At the beginning of 2015 I am (keeping my fingers crossed) going to have a manuscript. What I want to do with that manuscript is another thing. I’m scared, so very, very scared. What I’m actually scared of I’m not entirely certain. It could be rejection, failure, or just the sheer amount of additional stuff that will be involved whether I pursue traditional of self publishing. Best just stick a chapter a week up on Wattpad because at least then my manuscript may actually get read. And I know I can do that.

 

I’ve not even considered the finance section. What? Someone will pay me to write? Ha! No way?

 

At the moment I don’t actually believe I can do it. I’m not even sure if I want to anymore. Don’t get me wrong I will always write and I will finish my current WIP because if I don’t something inside me will curl up and die. Beyond that…

 

…Think I’m going to have a hot chocolate and Baileys now. Thank you to Alex J. Cavanaugh  and the Insecure Writer’s Support Group for a chance to vent.

 

Did anyone else do a business plan before they were published? How ambitious were the goals you set for yourself and did you succeed?

 

On a positive note, today is the release date of the second book in the Tala Prophecy, Chasing Shadows.  Congratulations to Tia Bach.  I have my copy and will be posting a review on Friday.   In the mean time check out the cover below, or the links for more information.

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Website: www.tiabach.com

Blog: http://depressioncookies.blogspot.com

Buy from Amazon. com and Amazon.co.uk

 

 

 

 

Insecure Writer’s Support Group – April

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It’s time for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group founded by writer and ninja Alex. J. Cavanaugh

Life is too short. And there is so much to do, so why would you fill it with things you didn’t enjoy and didn’t have to do?

I’m always reading stuff about how witches and vampires are so over and no one is reading that type of book anymore. So I’ve been trying to write other things and trying is the word because I have never got very far.

Life really is too short though and recently I read a post by Dyane Forde the author of Purple Morrow, her first book, which made me realise that there is absolutely no point putting time and effort in to a story that I don’t believe in. Especially when there is no guarantee that anyone will read it anyway.

So, life is too short and if I’m not enjoying my hobby there’s no point doing it anymore, is there?

A few weeks ago I dusted off the first draft of the witches and vampire book. I was ruthless. Scenes were cut down like leaves, unnecessary characters were left for dead and by the end I had a structured outline at my fingertips. Then I started to write. In first person, which I know is an acquired taste but I’m doing it for me now. And I love being back in Morgaine’s head and I love seeing her world, and I am so excited about where I am going to take her (yes, there will be sequels because my big dreams haven’t quite been quashed.)

And with Camp NANO now in progress there’s no reason not to get the rewrites/revisions done while I’m in the zone.

I also know feel that I have a story that I can use to help me build my brand, something else which has me lying awake in a cold sweat and night.

Of course the test is will I stay the distance? I’m excited now but can I stick to my plan? Let’s give it a go. Life’s too short and if you don’t try now you’ll never know, right? What does everyone else do? Are you fans of market research or do you write what you love?

Insecure Writer’s Support Group – March

 

Austen

 

Um, Yes. It is.  Putting aside her style, the contribution she made to English Literature, and the fact that she wrote what she wanted despite the requests of the Prince Regent it would be very hard.  A few ago I visited Jane Austen’s house in Chawton and saw where she actually wrote.  They wouldn’t let me take a picture, but I’m really, really glad I went because this month I was  tempted to whinge about the ongoing saga of my study which is currently being used as a dumping ground for the decorating stuff.

Jane Austen shared a bedroom with her sister and wrote at a table in the room where the family received visitors. There’s a rumor that the creaking door was never fixed as it alerted Jane Austen to the approach of visitors so she could hide her manuscript.  It’s the sort of rumor that is fun to believe, at least it was until I considered how frustrating it would be to stop writing because you are expected to be polite.  With so many distractions I’m in awe of the fact Pride and Prejudice was ever finished.  Perhaps if it wasn’t for all her pesky neighbours we would have more books. Or perhaps the books we do have wouldn’t be nearly as funny?

Given what Jane Austen accomplished without a study, privacy or a lap top I can hardly complain about having to clamber over paint pots.  Time to stop whinging and knuckle down.

How is everyone else finding March? And if you wish to share visit Alex J. Cavanaugh (one day I will remember how to spell his name without checking!) at  the Insecure Writer’s Support Group.

 

 

 

 

 

Insecure Writer’s Support Group – February

First Wed of Every Month

 

This month I wrote a book review for Read it Now or Else. Writing the review, and reading the other ones on the site made me think about my own writing style.  As part of my job I’m constantly writing reports that refer to local and government policy in order to justify the decisions I make.

These reports are cold clinical creatures that deal in facts only.  They are not a true reflection of my personality, but comparing my first review draft to that of the other contributors mine seemed a little bit formal and emotionless.  I don’t think I captured any of the enthusiasm I had for the story, or the characters but was very snooty and aloof in word choice and style – in fact I think I’m doing it now with this blog post.  I’m afraid that I write so much as part of my job that this is creeping in to my other non-fiction writing and I’m becoming an automaton.

The fiction itself appears to be safe, but then when I’m writing fiction I’m being someone else. Even in third person I like to make the character’s personality a feature of the prose.

Do my characters have more personality than me? And is that actually a bad thing?

What really made me pause though was that I’ve always believed words were a way to get to the heart of things.  I’ve never thought that they could be barriers before. Misleading and subversive, yes, but never huge cold gates that simply said ‘don’t go there’. If I keep writing this way is it possible that people would be closed out? Or does it really depend on the sort of person I want to attract?

That’s how I find myself on the latest step of the ‘oh my god who am I what am I doing what are my blogging goals?’ anxiety. If the purpose of a blog is to showcase the author’s personality then argh!

Still, on my last post where I had a bit of a melt down the comments were encouraging (an IWSG post, of course!). The best thing to do is keep writing blog posts, and keep experimenting.  That’s the only way I’m really going to find out what works, after all.

As always thank you to Alex J. Cavanaugh for giving me the chance to vent. And thank you to all the other participants.  Despite not doing as well as I’d hoped visiting other people last month I still discovered some amazing blogs.  I’m going to put the extra effort in this month too and find some more.

Insecure Writer’s Support Group – January

The last post on my blog made me realise exactly how much I do get out of IWSG. So this month I’m going to try to channel all my insecurities into something positive.

In my previous post I did reflect on the fact that I do not put as much into the IWSG as I get out of it so to change that I’m going to make IWSG last the whole month. Originally I had plans to  comment on every body’s post by next month, but since there are now 319 people on the list I think that’s too ambitious of me. If I comment on two of the blogs on the IWSG list though I will have seen 58 of you before the next update. I appreciate that’s setting the bar pretty low, but that’s in the interests of quality control and my sanity. If I can do more I will because it would be more comforting to finish on a round number.

I’m starting with Alex J. Cavanaugh who started Insecure Writer’s Support Group and then going through on every blog which has a number on the linky list that’s a multiple of 5 (to stop me getting confused.) I’ll check in next month. Hope everyone out there is having a productive start to the new year.

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Feeling Insecure?

As an addendum to my last post, this one is a tribute to the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, founded by Alex. J Cavanaugh. Now when it comes to online communities I’m a bit limp, invariably registering and then hiding in the corner doing the minimal amount or forgetting my login, password or both because real life is busy throwing other very important things at me. I didn’t even realise there was a competition to promote the group until I read it on another member’s post.  Thank you Linda King.

The beauty of Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) is that I don’t need a password.  All you have to do is add you name to the linky list here.  

 

It’s Easy

Then comes the hard part.  Then you have to remember, on the first Wednesday of every month to put up a blog post detailing about your insecurities writing related, or sometimes otherwise.  Now, for someone who blogs anyway you’d think this would be easy.  Not so much.  I do enjoy blogging but like with most things in my life (losing weight, trying to get more fresh air, trying to keep in touch with long distance friends) I have bursts of organisation and motivation which soon peters off when I hit a wall, burn out and spend a week lying on the sofa in the dark with a moist towel over my head.  There is so much to do! And seriously, who’d have thunk that this writing malarkey would take so much time!

The wonderful thing about IWSG is that it is only once a month. Even I can manage that.  Other groups go for two posts a week. A week! Frightening.  And once a month, despite whatever else is going on IWSG gets me writing a blog post.  I may not always get around to sharing the love on other people’s posts, and the fact that my own posts are lacking in comments reflects that, but once a month I still write and I still post. That’s important because even if no one reads these posts they are part of me discovering who I am when I write and what I want my voice to be.  And how I want my blog to look. Although not sure about today’s headings.

It works

Although I couldn’t tell you exactly why – perhaps the threat of missing two posts and being struck from the linky list (which is here, by the way.) Or it might be that even when I don’t read the other posts (and especially when I do) I get to see that other writers, all at different stages in their careers, are struggling with the same things and finding ways to overcome them.   If you were thinking about joining (by entering the linky list, in case I’ve not mentioned that enough already) and once a month isn’t enough for you then there is a recently launched facebook page, resources and a blog, and a community on Twitter (#IWSG).

Just remember that in order to test us all the January post will be on 8th and not the 1st.  See you there.

Insecure Writer’s Support Group – December

Before starting their blog did any one put much thought in to what type of blog they wanted to write, or did they just decide to give it a go and see what happened?

This blog is a tiny bit of both. I read a great many books and articles (most of them free) about author platforms and how to use a blog etc. But I was procrastinating so much that in the end I just decided to give it a try and see what happened. When I manage to update regularly things go well and although I don’t get huge amounts of traffic I do get more than I expected. Recently though I’m having an identity crisis. This I think mostly comes down to my blog’s name. I don’t think it really matches my content anymore and that I should switch to a blog that makes it clearer who I am by entering the ‘insert your name’ writer category of blog.

Doing that though feels just a tiny bit frightening. Despite all the literature saying that I should I’m still not convinced that I will shift to wordpress.org as I also told myself I couldn’t justify doing it until I had got into the habit of regular updates all the time. But then it does seem stupid to switch to switch to a blog under a different name, and then switch to a blog with the same name again.

Is there anybody out there who may be in a similar position to me? Or who has more experience. Any advice or anecdotes would be appreciated.

As always a big thank you to Alex J. Cavanaugh for creating the Insecure Writer’s Support Group for allowing me to vent – and making sure I do update at least once a month.

Insecure Writer’s Suport Group – September

How quick the months roll round, and a big thank you to Alex J. Cavanaugh for bringing us all together.

So, this month I was going to talk about how hard it can be to make friends, especially as you get older and become set in your ways and less adventurous. The focus of this was going to be the fact that there are two writer’s groups where I live (yes, two!) and I have not yet been brave enough to venture out of my house in the evenings to try them.

Then I started thinking about all the friends I’ve made since I started blogging, and the over 300 people on the IWSG linky list who take the trouble to comment on my posts every month(not all at once, of course!) Thank you to you all for reading my random musings, despite the fact I am still terrified of breaking the text up with pictures in case I cite one of them wrong.

I think the best way to make friends is to be one. Therefore this post is going to be short and sweet and I’m dedicating the rest of my Wednesday evening to commenting on as many of the other IWSG post out there as I can before my eyes start crossing.

I hope that’s not too much sugar coated sweetness for everyone 🙂

Insecure Writer’s Support Group and ROW80 check in

After two weeks the hallway is still not decorated. This may be due to both my boyfriend and I having full time jobs, or it may be because my boyfriend is a perfectionist with a paint brush. Either way there has not been much writing this week.

Sorry, Round of Word 80 goals.

 

Has everyone else had more luck this week? And if you think you can do better and want to try head over to Kait Nolan’s blog.

Consequently there are a great many things I feel insecure about this month.

Kindly, Alex J. Cavanaugh, secret Ninja of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, has given me a chance to share.

However, I’m too angry and tired to give in to them just at the moment.  In a previous post I wrote about a colleague leaving work, and how his manager praised his professional accomplishments.  When I imagined what my manager would say about me when I left it was the realisation that I wanted her to be congratulating me because I’d bagged the book deal at the end of the rainbow.

And to rehash another previous post, if that doesn’t happen that’s fine.  I want to write, I will write and I will continue to love it.

At least I will when the hallway is finished!

Bring it on.

So how is everyone else this month? I’ll be off to check up on you in a moment, but in the mean time please share below.