Expert Raindancer for Hire

IMG_0430I posted not long ago about the dangers posed to writers by sunshine. Somebody was listening.

We had booked a week in Ajman (a lesser-known Emirate) certain that we would have uninterrupted heat and sunshine. We were half right.

All around the pool, experienced visitors explained to us how they had never seen cloud like this at this time of year. As the raindrops fell onto our towels, friends posted on social media that they had lived in the Emirates for three years and had never seen rain.

The silver lining must surely be no distraction. What else could I do, but boot up the wireless keyboard and the writing app on the iPad? It turns out that there were quite a few things that I could do other than write.

Drink beer was one.

Attempt to amuse a grumpy sun-worshipper spouse was another.

Catching a vicious variant of the common cold was an unexpected insult to be added to meteorological injury.

Not a word was added to the count in the soggy Emirate. Not a word was added in the week following as I bravely fought off the cold. (I know, pathetic.)

In 2013, we brought rain to the Mayan Riviera. This year it was the turn of Emirates. Next year – we are going to rent our services to a country stricken by drought. I think that there is money in it.

In the meantime – I might have to make this writing lark work; so off to the grindstone for me.

Oh No! The Sun’s out.

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Don’t get me wrong, I am usually partial to a bit of Spring and sunny weather. Right now, I am thinking that I need to be outside enjoying it rather than sitting at my desk writing about it.

I bought and read a book yesterday. (This is a habit I encourage you, dear reader to develop. Keep an eye out for anything by Stuart Lennon).

I found this particular book while wandering around in the slightly mad worlds of Twitter and Blogs. The book can be found on amazon (Click on the word book earlier in this sentence!)

It is by a guy called Ben Adams. I enjoyed it. It is an easy read, and good fun. Ben is a little cagey about which bits are his experience and which are his imagination – but that is at it should be. We are British males. We don’t want too much of this metrosexual nonsense. We are uptight and proud of it, what?

Currently, I am stalking Ben. He published ‘Six Months to Get a Life‘, his first book, in January and his blog records his experiences. Damn it.

I will definitely use different pictures here if nothing else. He posted about #MondayBlog.

You can read it here but essentially it is a hashtag which one can add to tweets. Fellow authors then pick up on this and retweet and favourite it.

I only have a rudimentary understanding as to what the last sentence means, but I am hopeful that it is a good thing.

This page is on a new theme. Again.

Mrs L pointed out to me that having a ‘sign up’ box right at the bottom of the page was not necessarily very clever. So now it sits proudly top left.

So…no excuse not to sign up now.

Oh yes!

The book. Sean is getting along OK. With my long and varied experience of Central European hangovers, I found writing about Sean’s remarkably easy.

Until of course, the Sun came out.

‘When words don’t come easy….’

 

‘When words don’t come easy, I make do with silence and find something in nothing’  Strider Marcus Jones – Poet.

Well there’s a thought. Very nicely put Strider.

Also, what a fantastically poetic name! You had me at Strider.

Right now, words are coming easy in my little corner of Hampshire.

My target is a paltry 500 words per working day, which should allow plenty of time for editing and rewriting before reaching my target self-publication date at the end of April 2016.

By working days, I do not mean days spent in furious concentration in front of a screen; I mean weekdays.

I know from experience that an easy target motivates me to get ahead, to ‘bank’ some overachievement against the inevitable days where the golf course, the pub, or indeed both, are just too seductive to resist.

Therefore, the target is to be at 3500 by bedtime. At the time of writing, I am at 8,017.

Today, one thousand words were in the bank before ten. I rose at six, walked the dog and was at the screen before eight thirty. For the book’s hero, it was Friday night. I have always been fond of Friday night, so words came easy.

Now for all of you…

Oh all right, for both of you:

I am happy to reveal that the hero has been christened.

Sean. Sean for a brother that I never knew.

Now, I am going to have a little look at Strider’s Facebook page and maybe even mosey on to his Amazon page and buy a wee book.

The photograph by the way comes courtesy of Death to Stock. Well worth a quick look too, if you blog.

 

The Secret to Becoming a Better Writer

See! All of this perusing the internet is not a complete waste of time. I stumbled upon a site all about blogging in particular and writing in general. Brian Clark – has very kindly made the image above available.

So the secret is out. He has even made a pdf available should you wish to produce your own poster. Really.

A Writer writes.

My project is going well. I have taken to heart the advice above. My focus is on getting words on paper (or at least into the computer). I am resisting the temptation to do too much editing at this stage.

The logic being that there is always plenty of time to edit – but you cannot edit what is not there. It is difficult to argue with that.

My target is to rattle off 500 words per working day as a minimum.

So far, I have managed 5,000 words in the first five days, but I am realistic enough to realise that things are likely to get harder after the first flush of enthusiasm.

Several hours today were spent on this site. I had chosen a theme where the focus was on everything except the posts – and it is the posts that this should be all about. So, I installed a new theme.

I was feeling quite smug, until my wife asked me why I was bombarding Facebook with nonsensical posts.

My apologies to everyone on Facebook and Twitter that I hit with my avalanche. This post is on purpose – but those this afternoon were not. Whoops.

What am I looking for? I am looking for YOU. Yes, you there. I am new to this. Both to writing and to blogging.

Sign up to the newsletter at the bottom of this page and it will drop into your mailbox each month.

Comment on the posts – got some advice? Let me hear it. I have a lot to learn.

Permission Granted

In the true spirit of active prevarication, I have spent some time reading lots and lots of resources about how to write a book. Believe me, there are a lot of them out there. One that I found interesting and helpful was Stephen King – On Writing. (I will make a point to learn how to post links here for Amazon.) Mr King writes from a position of authority – in that he sold millions of books. I shall write some more tomorrow. I hope that my day grappling with all things IT has cracked the blog / website thing and I can focus on content.

A New Blogging Home for the budding author

Here we are – my first post on a shiny new website. I have transferred from a Go Daddy ‘Website Builder’ to a WordPress site. I am now trying to learn how to use it. If anyone is reading this – then I have successfully learned how to publish a blog post. Hurrah!
Now, off to work out what should be soon a Meta tag.