Ideas about Writing (that others had before me)

Write Every Day

I say: Try as I might, even with a blog that has the word 'daily' in it, I fail. If failure is the right word...

Others say: Write Every Day (search results)

Write What You Know

I say: Unless I'm writing semi-autobiographically or a non-fiction piece, this would limit my content. I love writing something that needs lots of research first. 
Then, when the skeleton of my story is ready for flesh, I can put myself into the scenes because the way I write as well as what I write has to come from what I know.

Others say: Write What You Know (search results)

Write What You Want to Read

I say: Received wisdom dictates I don't want to create fiction that alienates me as a reader. Yet, my best practice pieces have been in response to a prompt or lesson that requests a different genre or topic. When I read such pieces days, weeks, later I'm amazed! Was that really me?

Others say: Write What You Want to Read (search results)

Find Your Best Time to Write

I say: I'm neither disciplined nor well enough for such wise routine. I have to write when I feel like it.
Except when I catch myself out - such as now! I made myself think of a theme and get it written. The best reason I know for having a blog is being made to write for it.

Others say: Find Your Best Time to Write (search results)

Make Time for Artist Dates

I say: Having read The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity by Julia Cameron many years ago, and having referred to it many times since, the idea of making time to feed my creative self has born fruit. 
My Artist Dates consist of: reading, watching films, staring out of the window at the garden, being physically creative with paper and yarn...these simple home-based activities serve me well.
For dates beyond my front door, I am reliant on others. Though I may be housebound in body, yet I travel widely in my mind.

Julia says: Artist's Dates (search results)

Maximum ZZZeds

Oh, I've been waiting for you ... 

... my ultimate alliterative title in a long-standing and quasi serious but always tedious series! Here we are, at last. Guides' honour, I will never invent a tenuously linked theme or series again.

What Now?

You weren't expecting a journalistic exposé on the theme of ZZZeds, maximum or minimum, were you? Apart from the benefit of good sleep, honey bees and any Zedekiahs we may know, I have nothing more to say.

What Next?

I want to get back to basics; my blog title. This was meant to be the place where I
  • show up
  • free write
  • ponder
  • brainstorm
  • discuss
  • explain
  • invent
  • review
  • suggest
  • guide
  • invite
  • maybe, even, teach
  • certainly reach

so that a potential readership may be
  • entertained
  • provoked
  • challenged
  • offered ideas
  • given exercises
  • led to write

Further Thoughts

I've just looked back at the first post on this blog, The Inaugural Admission*, written in October 2013. I have had a medical mayhem of a journey since then so no wonder I've been going around in circles. Now, the underlying message is I want to refocus on the world of writing, writers and the written word.

Crafting with paper and yarn are my hobbies. I admire any crafter who becomes a designer, demonstrator, teacher or, indeed, writer. It's clearly not for me. Pop over to my Instagram account for updates about my texturally creative pastimes.

*Ah, you may say, the first post was alliteratively A ... it was indeed. Would you take another look at Abandoned Already? May history not repeat itself - yet again.

Being Ys Online

Ys At Last

I'm nearly through the alphabet in my non-daily dilemmas, albeit at infrequent and fragmentary intervals.  With a new-found wisdom about Y I love writing online and Y I love connecting with like-minded bloggers, posters and writers on the web, I've taken the example of those I admire and privately pledged to write a LOT more blog posts.

Y #1

Liz Hinds
from her own profile
In the early days of my online presence, (1998 onwards), I found a new friend easily - Liz Hinds who blogs at Finding Life Hard - when we virtually pitched up at an early writers' website. We've met several times and always know how to help each other when the need arises.

However, to my shame, while Liz has continued with the same blog, I've had several - children's books, book reviewing, writing, Multiple Sclerosis, cardmaking, my own thoughts...and on & on.

Something has to change.

business graphic

Y #2

Move swiftly on from 1998 and I've made a new online connection through my growing love of crochet. Heather of The Patchwork Heart shares several similarities with me:

  • we are/were both teachers
  • we are both battling ill-health
  • we are both creative souls
  • we are/have both made small online businesses - mine is now mothballed, Heather's is taking on a new lease of life as she can devote more time and energy to the necessary administrative tasks that are required to make, promote and sell handmade items online.
  • this piece sums up Heather's new life with colour and crochet.
  • we both communicate through the written word via blogs and other social media including our Instagram feeds. I'm sdcrafter and Heather is thepatchworkheart.

Y #3

  • Y have I not stayed with one online project and watched it grow exponentially at its and my own rates?
  • Y do I falter every time I'm ill (many-a-time) or whenever I think I have a better idea?
  • Y don't I simply turn up at the keyboard day-to-day and write a new Daily Dilemma or Other Words?


  • it is all very well being Ys at last, but how many times have I had an epiphany of new thought and promised practice only to drop the project at the first hurdle of health hindrance, be it Multiple Sclerosis or the next major surgery? (no more please!)
  • what is different now? Y am I more confident that I can write my blog more regularly and engage with other bloggers more often?
    - Life is changing in the Davis Den. We are moving onto a place where I'll have onsite care 24/7 through the provisions of a retired (and wonderful) husband and the resident care team.
    - We will still live an independent lifestyle behind our own front door but the security of the building and the care will allow me to enjoy my hobbies more.
    - Writing and crafting are my main hobbies, closely coupled with reading. Each has its place in my ability to live with MS, to switch gear, to take time out from the daily humdrum.
    - And to enjoy my husband's retirement with him.
The proof will be in the number of blog posts and the statistics behind the writing.

eXpecting eXcellence

I know - naff title but we've reached X on my alliterative writing journey. Here we go...

eXcellence for me?

You know eXactly what this means - literally and for your own life. What does it mean for me? In terms of my writing life, although one thing tends to lead to another, if I am settled in my writing life, my personal life benefits. However, if I am unsettled in my personal life - health, relationships, daft daily dilemmas - I have to make myself write, knowing that the benefits far outweigh the effort I make. With any hobby or calling, there will be some sacrifice, a sense of duty to the craft. Not wanting to get out of bed does not write a novel. Unless you take writing devices with you. This is not conducive to good sleep. 

It has to be a fab-u-lous brainwave to get me out of slumber and into note-taking role. 

So, back to eXcellence. Put simply, if I write as well as I can, feel a high from rereading my work, knowing it is the best AND receive some kind of third-party feedback, then I KNOW my work has eXcellence running through it, like a silver thread weaving through a woollen tapestry. 

I may (do) need to return again and again to my prose, editing and fine-tuning the grammar, syntax, style, sense, and many other details. But I am content when I know there is that rich thread running through, sparkling on the front of my work and neat at the back. No loose ends, no tangles, no unfinished pieces of thread.

Most of the time, I settle for my own perspective on my work because feedback is not always available. Look at this blog; it is sadly lacking in comments

[Note to self: reopen Google+ page & be more diligent across other social media.]
Having recently changed my blogging focus from craft to writing, many contacts may lose interest because they do not share this quest for eXcellence in the written word,

this photograph (taken by Pete Davis) is a barn
in a rural landscape, made into a greetings card by me:
it represents the crossover point of my focus
 - card to barn (the latter is the theme of my novel)

eXcellence for you?

Many of my contacts are family members, friends and online buddies from sport, writing, papercafting, yarncrafting and many other interest groups. 

What particular form of eXcellence are you reaching for?

Whether you are a writer, potter, artist, crafter, knitter, needlecrafter, photographer, gardener, cook, baker or candlestick maker

  • have you had success in your field?
  • is there something you need to study?
  • are there fellow travellers in your interest group who can critique your achievements, provide the feedback that leads to eXcellence?