Monday, 25 October 2010

Lifeboard ... To Lifeboard ...

Take a look at this :

If you want to get a life ... Lifeboard ~ It's basically setting your life out in pictures. A visual road map of your life which allegedly helps you plan your life's wants and needs.

You take the thoughts out of your head and lay them down in front of you ~

Basically, cut out images from magazines etc. that attract you ~ for whatever reason ~ colour, texture, implication, setting; a place you want to visit, people, words...

Under headings: career, family and friends, prosperity, love, marriage, success, paste the images into the boxes [preferably on a large pre-drawn segmented and labelled circle].

For further details, watch the video:

It's argued that people who plan and focus are more successful than people who don't.

There's got to be something in it ~ I can see the point of seeing something in front of you rather than keep talking about the same topics over and over is the key ... The images are clearer to understand and identify ... and maybe subconsciously, they bring out the real wants and needs from deep down inside the individual ???

Have a go. It doesn't cost anything and may inspire or motivate you ...
Let me know how you get on ...


Saturday, 23 October 2010

The Journey ...

Re: The Novel ~ Touchstone ...

Well, clearly I've not got the right map. I've re-instated chapter 2. Without it, chapters 3 and 4 don't make sense. But I've cleared out all the twigs, stones, nettles and litter so hopefully, it will be a more interesting read. I've tried to make the stone stonier and show not tell ... words from uni days I'll never forget.

Not brave enough to print chapter 2 yet ... letting it have a few days to settle down.

Here's to chapter 3 ...


Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Great Plans ...

'If you don't have a clear picture of your destination and a precise map to get there, you won't even begin the trip.'

Steven K. Scott, Simple Steps to Impossible Dreams

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Surprise for me ... Found my poems on Natterjack

Hey, just found 2 of my poems on Natterjack ...

Check them out [you know you want to] ...


Monday, 11 October 2010

Holiday Read ...

To aid my recovery, I’m flying off to the sun and looking for a light hearted read …

I’ve chosen author of The Devil Wears Prada, Lauren Weisberger’s latest release, Last Night at Chateau Marmont.

Looks like it's going to be fun … the ins and outs / ups and downs of life as a celebrity. A New York couple’s life is turned upside down when husband Julian [musician] becomes famous.

Any other ideas [nothing too serious just yet please], let me know … comment, facebook me, tweet me, email me.

Thanks, Gillian

'A writer is a person for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people' ~ Thomas Mann

Monday, 4 October 2010

Delete Delete Delete ...

The Novel ~ working title: Touchstone

I have now spent the last two weeks and especially the whole weekend thinking about, assessing and criticising chapters 2 and 3, Verity’s back-story. I was concerned with the sudden change in pace and tone. I re-read the chapters, mulling over family members, setting, timings, dialogue. Did Verity’s character fit into the back-ground I had created for her? Her family members appeared to be ‘real.’ Verity stood out as different from the rest of her family – enabling her to realistically carve out her career and partner Edward. So what was wrong with chapter 2 and 3?

I thought some more, avoiding reading Chapter 2 again. Then the light-bulb moment. If I didn’t want to read Chapter 2, why would anyone else? Chapter 2 was definitely boring. Too much back-story all in one place. I’ve now CUT the whole chapter for the sake of page turning quality. It hurt some but I feel free again.

Obviously, the chapter’s saved and will be fed through the narrative when necessary. I now feel I can tackle Chapter 3, 4 and maybe even 5, where Edward gets down to dirty business again and leads into Chapter 6 where his sister returns with a long kept secret.

All fired up now. Getting back to the novel. See you later,


Sunday, 3 October 2010

The Novel: Touchstone

For Prologue and Chapter 1 of my novel in progress, see My Pages ... The Novel ~ Touchstone ...

Brief Outline:~

In the depths of a freezing January evening, Verity Spencer stumbles onto a city bridge. In one hand, an empty vodka bottle, in the other, a photograph of her children. Can Verity face the truth? Could her next choice change her life completely?

Verity just wants more. Searching for a perfect life in a contemporary world, Verity Gilligan married avaricious entrepreneur, Edward Spencer, owner of Xtreme Leisure.

Edward assumes absolute power, controlling everyone and everything until he is mysteriously exposed for bribary and corruption.

Suffering alcohol induced depression, Verity blames herself for choosing Edward and the lifestyle; she was paying the price with something more than money could buy. Can she find the key to set herself free?

More to follow ...

Also, Looking for suitable title ... any ideas ?


Add a photo

Good news, after asking around and googling, I've just found the button for incorporating a photo into a blog...

So here's my test blog and photo ... Son not in distress, playing bass guitar ...


On Writing ... and 'That' Novel ...

On Writing …

How much practise writing should one do? How do you measure improvement other than winning writing or poetry competitions? How many short stories must you write before you feel experienced enough to take on a novel? I see poets and writers getting out there and performing their stuff. I could do that. Market myself? Maybe.

My friend once said to me that I was scared of success. I’ve thought about her comment many times and often found her to be right. Although I’m an outgoing person, I was too shy to be in the public eye. But with recent opportunities, I’ve built up my confidence and ready to take on more public spaces. But now I find, where my novel is concerned, I lack confidence. I’ll admit it, I’m scared of failure. Is this why people write a few chapters into the novel and give up? Is it because they run out of ideas? Or is it because the prospect of finding an agent is like winning the lottery? Okay, people say if you’ve something great to say, to put in print, you’ll always find an agent / publisher, but surely it’s like finding a needle in a haystack? Maybe networking and industry contacts might be the only way. This clearly isn’t going to happen overnight. There would be workshops, readings, festivals to attend, which all sound interesting and positive. But I continue to wonder why so many authors seem to move to London?

Well, I’ve finally decided to stop entering poetry and short story competitions for some considerable time … and get on with ‘that’ novel. I keep telling myself I just need to dive in and get on with it ... carry on with it until it's finished.

I know I’ve said this before … but I’m determined not to get distracted this time. I promise my recent distraction was definitely genuine, involving a long, relatively unexpected hospital stay and an even longer recuperation period. I’m pleased to say that the anaesthetic has worn off at last and my brain is beginning to kick in again.

I’ve been going over chapter 2, which is the back-story to main character, Verity, Edward’s wife. I am concerned that the tone is quite different to Edward in chapter 1; obviously because she is a woman, but I feel she is too ineffective, and her backstory too twee, so will do some work on this before I let you have a peek at it.

Or maybe, I should just publish it and you decide ... I'll just check it over first ...


Friday, 1 October 2010

Wordpool ~ Blackpool's Festival of Words ... Saturday 2nd October ...

Opening Saturday 2nd October ~ Blackpool's Fourth Annual Festival of Words
[That's tomorrow !] ~ Opening to be attended by the Mayor of Blackpool plus free entertainment at St John's Square, Blackpool.

Look Out for 'Words, Words and Other Stuff', Festival Paper for more information

Saturday 2nd October
10.30am - 3 pm Wordfair - The Old Post Office, Abbingdon Street, Blackpool.
Artists, Craft makers and Writers selling all sorts of wonderful things inspired by words. Free entry.

12.30pm 'Grand Words' Final at The Grand Theatre Studio

Sunday 3rd October
11.30am - 3pm
Stanley Park near the Model Village ~ 'It came from ...'
An out fo this world family event with friends from HandHeld Theatre Company, The Dopplegangers and lots of arts and crafts.

Tuesday 5th October
10.30am - 12 noon
Dr. Anke Bernau [Lecturer in Medieval Literature and Culture at University of Manchester] discusses Wolfhall. Occult History & The Monstrous Past at FY Creatives, 154-158 Church Street. Free Admission.

1.30pm - 3pm
Simon Entwistle - Storytelling Walk - Ghosts and Hauntings of Blackpool. Free.
Meet at Grundy Art Gallery, Queen Street.

Bispham Library - Crime Author Stephen Clayton - discusses the genre and his latest work - The Art of Being Dead. Free.

3.30pm - 5pm
Afternoon Tea with John Siddique
FY Creatives 154-158 Church Street - Reading new work, Blackpool poems and some old favourites.
Poetry Quilt - Raffle.

4pm - 5pm
Alexandra Heminsley, Author.'Ex and the City' Under 16's event. TBC

6.30pm - 8pm
Alexandra Heminsley and Sara Manning - Blackpool Sixth Form College.
Two successful authors discuss writing, blogging and life ! Free.

Wednesday 6th October
12.30pm - 1.45pm or 2.30pm - 3.45pm
Last Tram to Starr Gate - Meet on North Pier and finish at South Pier.
Jacqueline Pilton and Louise McNultya. Street Theatre event based on the play 'Last Tram to Starr Gate' - at various locations along the prom. Take a tram, hire a bike or walk between the scenes. Free.

7.30pm for 8pm - 'Me, Mum and Dustry Springfield' - Grand Theatre Studio.
Stephanie Ridings - Matcham's Bar pre-show drinks - show 8pm followed by Directors Chair Q&A.

Thursday 7th October
1pm - 8pm - Cafe Culture - National Poetry Day Event - The No. 5 Cafe, Cedar Square.
On-line link up with cafes around the world.
Drop in workshops and performances with They Eat Culture, Poets Marvin Cheeseman, Rachel McGladdery and Annie Clarkson.

Friday 8th October
At the Fringe - 11am - Book Crossing Launch - CupCake - 152 Church Street

At FY CREATIVES 154-156 Church Street:
1pm-3pm - Live Poets
4pm-6pm - Behind the Front - Readings by Local Writers.
6pm-7.30pm - Stage Write - New Play Reading Group - Launch £2.50 on the night.

6pm - 8pm
Dead Good Poets at No 5 Cafe, Cedar Square [Dead Famous Literary Event]

Most of the events are free ... Check them out ... Maybe I'll see you there ...Enjoy !!