Initial Instigations

Another Alliterative Title

I had to stick with the next letter in my title alphabet - 'I' this time.

Writing Weekend Whispers

Rather than New Year Resolutions, I prefer to consider myself goal-orientated and work best when I know what long-term project I am working on. For 2014, I am aiming to finish my first draft of Changing Manor Barn. To put this in perspective, folks, I first wrote plans for this novel in 2000. Yes, just over thirteen years ago. Interruptions for Life Events and Ill-Health have not been inconsiderable.

With this in mind, I spent the weekend writing in two half-day sessions. There are not twelve hours in my half days. To write, I sit in my wheelchair at my keyboard situated on the large table I call my desk. I am surrounded with my plans and charts etc. It is not possible to have a walk every half hour but I do stretch my legs and flex my ankles. My wrists are well supported and I do not type like grease lightning so, hopefully, no RSI will ensue.

Silence is not Mandatory

Just as well. The wind rattled anything that could move on a modern property or in its garden, and threw rain and hail at the window panes. Still I pressed on with my story world, lost, oblivious of outside other than being pleased I wasn't part of it.

Then I heard faint footsteps coming along the corridor to my office. A hand reached over my shoulder and placed various drinks and food on my desk for my intermittent consumption. However, this was not a friendly ghost.

After an afternoon of this, I asked the owner of the footsteps if he could stop tip-toeing about and make more noise. His reply: 'I've put my back out and was trying not to disturb you because I knew you wanted to write.'

Better to be Selfish or Selfless?

Authors often refer to writing as a selfish hobby. Now you know why it sometimes feels that way. Despite my mobility and health issues, I do like to look after my friendly ghost when he is poorly. I just need him to tell me when he is not as able as normal.

But his own selflessness was not in vain. I clocked up just over 2700 brand new words and a quick edit of the book so far.

And I was shattered afterwards. There were achy pains where there should not be any feeling. So, is being overtired a cure for MS? It doesn't work like that at all. Having a lack of sensation is not overcome by pain in the same place, sadly.

But we are here to talk about writing,

Better to be Prepared than Repaired

I have identified the reason I have to run through the whole book every time I sit down to it - the gaps between one writing session and the next are too long. So, the answer is to write little and often, more when I am able to. I am amending my charts and plans so that they reflect the true events in the lives of my characters as they lead me astray.

Housekeeping note: Always copy your PC files and rename. eg CMB - plans-revised became CMB - plans-from-manuscript. This way you leave a trail of files that tell the history of your writing. Simlarly with your drafts. I update the date in the title and also the word count which is another part of the tiles. Right now were on 2014.01.26MB1st-16780wds. The 1st refers to first draft even though my self-critic has been unleashed too often.

I hope I've found a way to keep up with the beat of the Barn!

Holiday Happiness, and Hope for 2014

All at Chez Davis have had a happy time

We've consumed mountainous quantities of food, a more modest gallonage of drinks, alcofrolic and boring alike. Games have been played willingly and accompanied by gales of laughter and fun. All in all, we haven't had a quiet Christmas, thank goodness.

As the year 2013 fades

I'm left with mixed feelings towards its gifts to me. Yes, I still Live[d] Each Day One at a Time. It's the only way to stay sane! Yes, I renewed my writing pledge to myself. Yes, I managed to make cards for many family & friends. Enough has already been said/written about that topic so let's put it behind me.
see more images like this, here: all my readers - please stay with me all year.

Love Shirl xx