Monday, 7 May 2018


One week has passed since I revived this blog, and what a week! I have learnt so much about myself, especially the fact that I don't know the first thing about writing!

The past week has seen me exploring and learning about exposition, narrative summary and scene summary. Things I have heard of before, but weren't quite sure what they meant. There is so much left for me to learn. It is going to be tough, but very worth it.

So the first week has seen me with my head in books, rewriting parts of my manuscript, and looking longingly at the ironing pile. I am determined to do this. I WILL do this.

So, I will update the blog once a week. It has become a welcome distraction! Things will be changing, on the blog mostly. But not for a while, as I focus on getting the book done. It is also a Bank Holiday here in the UK, and I hope to be spending some time with my nearest and dearest. I write this before the weekend, and I know I have a busy few days ahead of me. So I doubt I will be making much progress on the novel. But Tuesday, back to normal and I won't have an excuse.

So wherever you are in the world, I hope life is good to you. Keep fighting for whatever dreams you may have. You will be surprised at how satisfying following them is, even when it gets tough.

Monday, 30 April 2018

Welcome Back

As promised, here is my update.

Now, I could ramble, and if I do, forgive me. The main reason I have revived this blog is because Wayne Kelly of the Joined Up Writing Podcast asked for a website or blog to direct his listeners to. Why would he want to send listeners to my website or blog? Because he is announcing my plans!

To be held accountable, he is going to let his listeners know that on October 19 2018, I will have a finished manuscript of my novel, ready to send out into the world. My first goal is May 19th, when it will go out to my Beta Readers.

This blog will continue to run for now. However, I am toying with the idea of a pseudonym, as I want to write Horror as well as Crime. And as such, I will want to keep two separate identities for each genre. But any change, or move, will be announced here.

When I get in the groove of getting this novel going, and managing my time and productivity, I will also revive Becoming Luddite, as that is my passion project.

But for now, come back here every week for news and updates.  Or don't.

Coincidentally, if you want to apply to be a Beta Reader, there is a sign up form in the side bar.

The Joined Up Writing Podcast is a great listen. It is weekly, and isn't too long that you can't find the time, and not too short that you get nothing from having listened to it. And Wayne is always open to suggestions, and loves hearing from listeners, otherwise he feels as if he is shouting into the void! 

The Joined Up Writing Podcast blog can be found here, and just search the title in your podcast app.

Friday, 27 April 2018

Exciting Times Ahead

There are exciting times ahead. If you have been wondering what I have been doing, know that I have been working extremely hard! But not hard enough. Check back on Monday for exciting news.

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

I'm going away for a bit


Well, it has come to my attention that blogging here is a lot more work than I wanted it to be.

But do not fear, I have started a new blog elsewhere. This is because it is a totally different topic and I didn't want to confuse the two.

So if you want to hear my ramblings you can head on over to where I will talk about my adventures in the offline world.

There could be ramblings about writing and such, and I am sure it will progress and grow organically in time. But I have something to say on unplugging - or becoming luddite - and so, although I am sure there will be days that I struggle, I am sure that it will be less of a battle.

So I hope to see you there, but if not, I do understand. Have a lovely day, and I may be back here soon!

Saturday, 3 February 2018

Capturing Ideas

Sorry for being quiet. I haven't done a great deal of writing. And as a result, I feel very deflated. The novel is not moving forward at all. I keep swinging between a complete rewrite and just an edit. If I keep rewriting though, it will never get done. So I am going to go for the edit. I hope by this time next week I will have successfully completed one pass through it.

A new goal for me is to write one short story a week and submit one short story a week. This too is daunting. But I am frustrated by the lack of writing I have out in the world in the hope of being published.

That brings me neatly on to the DIY MFA Book Club prompt: Try a new technique from the DIY MFA book.

Now, the technique I am going to try out is not unique to the DIY MFA. I will be keeping an Idea Bank. 

My primary focus will be filling a notebook with anything and everything that will be useful. I will set myself a target of one thing a day for the next seven days. Another thing for the Idea Bank is physical items, like postcards, or a pebble from a beach. Anything that can trigger an idea. 

But as I am new to this, I will focus on the capturing in word form. This is not to say that I won't do the physical aspects, just that they aren't important to me right this moment. I want to get back in the groove of seeing and capturing potential ideas before I take it to the next level. So in seven days time, I will tell you if I have managed to capture seven things - or more! 

My ROW80 goals will need to be adapted accordingly, and I will update very soon.

How has your week been?

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Crime Goggles

The prompt from the DIY MFA book club this week is very difficult. The question that is asked is: What is your favourite story type?

I have been thinking about this for a while. Not in response to the prompt, but to writing and reading in general. I took the quiz a few weeks back and it said I like the underdog, but I am not sure that is correct. I like seeing the world put to rights.

Some of my favourite books and shows are Criminal Minds, Castle, and anything by Val McDermid.

However, I have come to learn lately, that when it comes to reading and watching anything in the crime genre, I prefer the actual crime to the story of the people who are solving it. It isn't that I have no interest, but that the crime should be the forefront, and the character development should be a side story.

I am reading Insidious Intent at the moment, and whilst it is a good book, I think it falls short of what I enjoy reading. There is a lot more focus on the private lives of Carol and Paula in particular, and some on Stacey. There is not enough detection in the murders.

Whilst I love the characters in the Hill and Jordan series, I was more interested in how they worked together to solve the crime, than how they coped with their personal life.

It seems to be the way, even with Castle, that as the series progressed, more focus went on to private issues within the Caskett relationship.

The only one which seems to stick to the crimes first and foremost is Criminal Minds.

So in response to the question, I think my favourite stories are crime fighting ones. I like the how and why of crime, and I like trying to figure out who it is that committed the crime.

But I am broadening my crime goggles, and intend to consume lots more crime fiction, and seeing if there is something I have missed.

What are your favourite stories?

Friday, 26 January 2018

Supporting Characters - What do they do?

Today, my butt is in the chair reluctantly. But nevertheless, I am here!

Because of ROW80 (and illness) I am behind on my book club posts. Today I am looking into supporting characters. The book club prompt is to say what my favourite supporting character is, and why.

In the prompt, I am given these archetypes - Villain, Love Interest, BFF, Mentor, and Fool  - and I am not sure which one my favourite supporting character falls in to.

When I think of my favourite books - The Dr Tony Hill and Carol Jordan crime novels - and my favourite TV show - Castle - I think it is safe to say that my favourite supporting character takes on the role as mentor.

Or is it BFF? I like my supporting characters to fully understand and love the main character. The supporting character needs to bring enrichment and new ideas to the table, without taking over and being the one doing everything. The supporting character is the 'great woman behind the great man'. In essence, I want my supporting character!

They are the ones that hold it all together. When the main character can't take any more, the supporting character tells them to get their act together. When the main character is frightened, the support says 'I'm here'. The main character wouldn't be as good at what s/he does if it wasn't for the supporting character.

Like any good relationship, they complete each other.

And I need to remember this during the rewrite of my novel. My supporting character needs to support, and be seen to be supportive.

What is your favourite? 

Find out more about DIY MFA here.