Friday, May 15, 2020

Not Much Going On

I haven't been in here much, mainly because there's not much going on with my reading. I haven't read any books while in isolation - but... I have begun writing again.

I've been getting a new book together, and with the help from a fellow writer, I've been pulling my ideas together and writing it little by little.

It's not easy when I'm normally writing a lot of imaginative works over the past few years so easily. So, what I'm doing - when I'm stuck - is going back over my older work, which isn't edited yet, and reading over it. This gets met into the writing mood.

If you're a writer, what do you do to get yourself into your writing mood? Do you read over your old work, do you meditate? Do you listen to loud heavy metal (like I've heard Stephen King does)? Or do you go for a long walk with a notebook - seeing we're permitted to do that now. 

Yes, this Covid-19 is really taking our most-loved privileges away from us, isn't it? At least it's not taking away my love of my books and writing from me... or my painting. 
Truthfully, I think it may be that my social life is gone that I can't write what I want to. I know that sounds weird, but when I don't get out to where I want to, in the way I used to, it effects the way I write. 

How about you? Has this virus affect your life this way too? Until my next post, Happy Reading and Writing.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Reading or Writing Time in Isolation!

So, it's been a few months since Corona Virus has hit this planet in a big way, and we're all going a little bananas in our homes.

So far, we've probably become very accustomed to washing our hands for 20 seconds every 20 minutes... which really drives me around the twist, but I understand it.

I've wiped down all my books - no matter how long they've been in my house; they're squeaky clean. And recently, the computer has seen more company than I have with computer people coming to look at it and the inside of it more than they were talking to me... yeah, my computer had a better social life than my wheelie bin and me put together!

And still the computer didn't work by week five of me being home. I ended up taking it to a guy who I Googled about over breakfast this week - and I had never heard of, but his reviews were fantastic.

Anyway, the computer is back on track, and so am I. And this is why I've been off-line with my blogs for so long. I'm really sorry about this. Anyway, I hope you can all forgive me.

I hope you're all going okay with the lock downs around the world, and keeping up your reading and writing. I've been trying to think of what to write... let alone read; as my focus is still not complete here since my friend died. But I'm getting new ideas for stories, and writing them down. So, that's a good thing - that I'm not completely done for, right? 

Well, I hope you're doing better than I am. I haven't read any more books since 'David Boring', but I am looking at what to read next... and it might be something Stephen King wrote way back in the 70's (no, not 'The Stand' - too close to home and way too creepy to read right now). 

Hey, why don't you guys let us all know what books you've read so far this Isolation time, while you've all had the time to read. I know a lot of us aren't sleeping well either - which is a good time to get in and read too. Until my next post, happy reading - or writing!

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Isolation Reading Time

As the world goes into lockdown, it seems that Australia is way behind in doing what is right.

But a lot of us are voluntarily staying home - and I'm one of them. I have a medical condition which would make it easy for that virus to enjoy itself in my system; and it would do some real damage to me.

The libraries are empty of books because the government closed them all on Monday - and gave members up to 3 months to read them all. I have my own home library and it's all the books I'd ever want to read in my lifetime; which is a great thing, seeing I now have the time to do all the reading I want to do.

But I also want to do some writing and editing as well; as I wrote a book while I was house sitting at my brother's house. And it really needs a good look at... and seeing the virus is spreading quickly, it's advisable to stay at home.

It'd be great to know which books you've been reading since January - when the virus broke out - and which books you're up to. So far, I've read:

'David Boring' by David Clowes - Graphic novel.

I'm working my way through other books right now, and I'm also writing books as well. Until my next post, happy reading.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Social Impact On LIbraries

As the impact of the Corona Virus hits home for all of us, we have to really feel awful for the workers around the world who have been told to stay home - or have been laid off from workplaces; in particular, libraries which are closing up around the globe.

For some of these libraries, it's the first time in over a century - and for others, it's the first time ever. 

I used to frequent libraries on a regular basis, however, over the past decade I became a germaphobe and just can't stand the places - which caused me to form my own library at home of over 2,000 books. I'm pleased to say that all of my books are either brand new or second-hand (which are wiped clean with sanitiser when I arrive home before being added to the collection) and it does feel great to have a collection of what I want to read here in my house. Do you have a collection of books where you are? 
I do think that if you have your own library at home, it keeps your sanity? I most certainly do! It's something in a way of keeping in contact with the mind of other people through the written word. Music does the same thing - and that's why I have an extensive music collection as well.

Well, if you wish, please do drop a comment below and tell us all how you're doing in this global crisis. We'd love to hear about your reading commitments right now. How many books have you read so far? Are you well? Are you self-isolating? And most of all: are you okay? Until my next post, happy reading.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

New Books and Old

It's a New Year and a new decade, and there's so much going on in my life right now. However, that doesn't mean I'm not going to get in and read.

Last year, was dreadful for me - as was the year before. But I've been reading a couple of books over Christmas and it's been good for me to slow down and get into them. 

How about you? What books have you been getting your nose into lately? Or have you been hanging out with family and friends more? If you've been doing the latter, hey that's cool too. 

Well, until we all return back to the normal stations in our lives, I thought to tune into here and let you know what I'm currently reading:

'The Institute' by Stephen King
'The Secrets of the Monarch' by Allison Dubois. 

The second one is explaining a lot about my grief I've been working through during the past two years. And so, it's been good for me to read it. Well until my next post, happy reading.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Christmas Reading

Okay... it's a little before that crazy, weird time of year where we just simply won't have time to ourselves. We'll be out and about visiting family (or will we?) and we're blowing out the credit cards just to keep our kids and family happy.

But when the days come to an end, we all settle down into bed and pull out the reading glasses to read before the lights go out, and I'd love to know what you all get your noses into at this time of year.

Do you read a little bit of horror from Stephen King and Peter Straub. Or do you get into some Polly Evans? Or are you into Janet Evanovich and her witty, sassy look at crime-solving?

Right now, I'm reading two books - yeah, I love a challenge. I'm reading 'The Institute' by Stephen King. I bought this one at Target 'Country' for $16.00 at Ocean Shores, Northern New South Wales while I was on holidays there. At first, I was going to wrap it up and put it under my tree as a pressie for myself... but then, I began to read it, and just couldn't put it down!
The second one I'm reading is 'Secrets of the Monarch' by Allison Dubois. Now, I have three of her books, and found she's easy to read. But I'm reading them backwards. This is the book I should be reading last... oh well. It's a good read, and she makes sense too. She's not a heavy-handed writer either which is good for me at this time of year.

Anyway, I hope you're reading some great works right now, even while you're catching up with family at the same time! Until my next post, Merry Christmas, and happy reading!

Sunday, December 1, 2019

50,000 Words Blasted!

Yes! 

I finished NaNoWriMo! Woohoo!

Did you finish your book in the allotted amount of time, or did you come up short? Or... did you blast through the 50,000 words and keep going to 60,000 or 70,000? Well, if you did, way to go!

I only just made it with 8 words to spare, and that included an epilogue... to show there's going to be a second book.

Now, to enjoy Christmas and clean the house. And yesterday, I did just that! I concentrated on cleaning out my art area, and threw out a huge amount of things I didn't need.

And today, I'm hoping to get back into the office and put the children's books away and some other things away too... thus giving me space to put up the Christmas Tree and decorations. 
I'm looking forward to working on getting in and sorting through more books and other things in the office as well today; if I get the time to, as I have other housework to get done. I do have other ideas for the office before the year is out. 

Well, that's all for today. I hope your NaNoWriMo was as successful as mine has been. Until my next post, happy reading!

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Past 30,000 Words In 10 Days

NaNoWriMo is great this time around. 

So far, as you can see, I've blown past the 30,000 word mark; and I'm up until midnight pumping out those words without even realising it!

It's been fun, inspirational, and pretty much the best NaNoWriMo I've done thus far. I'm not really sure what's made it fun this time, but it's been something exciting for me.

I've gotten more story ideas by working through my sci-fi fantasy collection than anything else; and getting enough sleep is something I've been doing as well. One of my biggest secrets is making sure I eat properly - absolutely zero junk food this year. And if I want some (like pizza or nachos), I make it from scratch myself. There's no going out and ordering it - no matter how much easier it is for me. There's way too much salt in the takeaway variety for me.

I'm also a pantser writer. Yep, I have some idea where my writing is going, I write up rough sketch of what I want to do, and then I throw the character into the thick of it and let them take the reigns. They take the roads they want, they make the deals, they blow up what they want to blow up and everything else is cannon fodder. 

Which is the most fun way of writing... right?

Right...

Well, a storm is grumbling and thundering its way to Logan City. I have a home office to get cleaned up and cleaned out before midday tomorrow. And I better get my chapters written before that storm hits too. So, I best be going. I thought to check in and let you know I'm still here. I'm still pumping out the words into my NaNo book and I'm flying past the 30,000 word mark and heading up the highway to the hellish 40,000 word mark (yep, I'm driven this horrible highway before - it's right when The Block shows its fugly face).  Until my next post, happy reading and writing. 

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Reached 20,000 Words

Okay, there was a good way of doing this easily... and it's because I started writing a draft about a month ago on something I really started research on in September. And the story was about something I had written a flash fiction on a couple of years ago.

So, I didn't really cheat, it was something in the wings that I wanted to write, but I wanted to write a draft to see if it would take off first... and well, it kinda did. 

Towards the end of October, I held off and did the Halloween thing and organised my folks' house (as they were coming home from a long holiday overseas) and then, I jumped right back into it on 2nd November - only to have some major teething problems with the NaNoWriMo site. But I wasn't the only one. So, it was a matter of spending most the that Saturday reorganising and counting words.

Yeah, a royal pain in my butt - and not to mention everyone else's for that matter. 

Anyway... my story is really up and running a course I never thought it would. I totally Australian too - with every Aussie slang word there is; along with a few I've made up. But this story has really been a lot of fun to do; making it dead easy to get it up to the 20,000 word mark. 

Now, the counting up on the side there. Each chapter is the in the smaller thousands... the bigger numbers are the above chapters counted together (including the one next to it). If I've mis-calculated, let me know; I'm not good at numbers. I'm only good at writing a book. 

Well, until my next post, I hope you're enjoying the month of NaNoWriMo. I certainly am. Happy Writing and Reading. 

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Welcome To National Novel Writing Month!

Aah yes! November. This is the month where all would-be writers - published and not - jump onto their tablets, computers and phones and write as much as they can to get to 50,000 words (or more if they wish) to write a book in a month!

Well, last year it was so much fun to get in and just do the deed of getting down and dirty with the words, and I loved it! I completed my book; but it was under the 50,000 words - even when it was fleshed out. But never mind, I enjoyed the ride none-the-less.

This year, the NaNoWriMo site has been updated and has been the most difficult to navigate ever. So many people have put in bug complaints about where to update their word count, that their word count isn't been updated properly, the 'plus sign and clock' aren't on their home page - and they have to sign out and sign back in again to activate them. Or worse still: they have to delete their project and started a new one! 

Well, this year, I put in a new project a month early, and thought I was being uber-organised. It turned out that no, I wasn't being all that organised at all, and the site screwed up my project royally. So, I had to delete my project, sign out completely, sign back in and put up a new project (which was the exact same one, but well, you know computer systems - it just had make me repeat myself). 

I wasn't the only person who had to do this, and was also more than miffed about how I couldn't just jump into my writing and put on my game face for this challenge. It's just not right when you're doing a massive challenge like this, you get all organised and find there's a huge glitch in the matrix of the system, forcing a lot of people around you - you included - to have to stop doing what you're doing and redo something. 

I love to write; and this is the first book I'm writing since last year... which I really struggled with. I just hope after this year, they don't 'update' the NaNoWriMo site again. There's so many people still in the dark. Well, until my next post, happy writing.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Halloween Reads

This time of year is by far my favourite! I get to carve pumpkins, dress up and scare kids, and hand out lolly bags. Yep, it's the fun part of the year.

It's also fun to get in and read some good horror too; and as a lot of you know, I'm a big Sai King fan. I love 'Christine' and 'Salem's Lot' as well as 'The Stand' and 'The Talisman' and 'Black House'. There's also Sai King's 'Dark Tower Series' - which I'm still up to book 4 of; if I can find it around the house! I did have it around here somewhere. Yes, it's in a safe place. And you know what happens with safe places, they turn into a wormhole; a bit like where the Tardis vanishes into every now and then.

But it's the way Sai King writes his works which pulls me in. I always feel as though we're sitting by a camp fire - or having a cup of coffee in a local cafe - and he's telling us a tall tale while we're all leaning inwards waiting with bated breath at what what will happen next!

Then, bang!

He says (writes) something which makes sure when you go to bed that night, you turn to switch off the bedside lamp, and well, you hesitate and wish you didn't have to. King's words whisper in the back of your mind and you wish you hadn't read that book - or that part of the book - this afternoon. But then, he's your favourite writer. 

Well, he's mine. And he's why I enjoy his work so much. His work has influenced how I work my own work, my own writing, as well. And you know, it's not easy to pull in an audience, to scare them, to make them feel something with just the words you write. This takes effort, emotion and letting people into your deepest thoughts and feelings - and that's harder than you'll ever think possible. 

And so my favourite Halloween reads have to do with how a book is written. I do enjoy the books I mentioned above, truly, and I've reread them a few times as well as watched the movies. However, the books are always better. And even though I have an extensive Stephen King collection, I haven't read all of them, it's just the status of owning them all which makes me want more of his written work. 

So, how about you? Who is your favourite horror author and how do they keep you coming back for more? Do you write because of them or do you just enjoy reading their work because it takes you places and scares you really good? Until my next post, happy reading and Happy Halloween.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

NaNoWrMo

Yes! It's coming up to that time of the year again. And I'm taking part in this novel-writing month again.

Are you taking part? I hope you do. It's a great way to get into the habit of writing a book, and taking part in something which will help you work on your words with writing a book.

I remember my first attempt with National Novel Writing Month - it was less than a success. But as time went on, I became better at it. I was more prepared and I wrote faster.

It's something I've found I'm looking forward to each year. And I don't write all day with it. I write a couple of hours a day and that's it; there's not huge demand on me as it's something I've usually planned around - and I try to write a bit every day too.

I've been preparing for my book this year in such a way that I've begun working on it beforehand to see if it'll work out - and so it's up the draft stage at the moment; which is good. I'm able to get into it better than any other year. The best thing is that I've even got a cover ready for it too. 

So, are you taking part in NaNoWriMo? I hope so, it's a great way to get yourself working on a book of any type. Until my next post, happy reading and writing.