Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Black Cat Appreciation Day 2016!

So, I couldn't miss today, Black Cat Appreciation Day, to celebrate Black Cats, because I have an absolute darling of a kittie called Binx, who is my own little black panther; this is a picture of her (above) as she was rolling around on our decking in the sun.

When I adopted her and her mum, Silver (not a black cat, but still wonderful), from the brilliant rescue centre, Happy Endings Rescue, they said they have difficulty re-homing black cats, because people are superstitious about them, but I've always loved the melanistic little beasties :).

Binx was only 7 months when she moved in with us, and she was a pretty little bundle of nerves, but after a year with us, she is just such a loving little lady. She's always happy to see you, and if you call, she comes trotting up, tail straight up in the air. And she adores a good scratch on the top of her head.

I love my sweet little black cat, and I think everyone else should love her too :D.

If anyone is interested, this picture of Binx is available on Society6 as a print, plus all sorts of nifty accessories like phone and laptop cases, T-shirts, throw pillows, and much more, 

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Insecure Writer's Support Group - My First Post & My First Piece, where is it now?

I have recently joined The Insecure Writer's Support Group (IWSG), whose stated purpose is to share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Where we can post our thoughts on our own blogs. Talk about our doubts and the fears we have conquered. Discuss our struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling.

Plus, a question is posed, and this month's is: What was your very first piece of writing as an aspiring writer? Where is it now? Collecting dust or has it been published?

Well, the first piece of writing I had an aim to publish was way back when I was 11 years old. Having grown up watching British and American Sci-fi and Fantasy TV and film, Dr Who, Star Trek, Star Wars and some others which have been consigned to the dark vaults of history, I wrote a sci-fi extravaganza of bold young agents in an intergalactic (possibly interdimensional, I don't think I was all that clear on that point) force who fight the worst of the worst baddies with their laser pistols and psychic powers.

Well, as you can imagine, I am very, very glad the internet did not exist when I was 11 and that rather purple set of prose is now consigned to my very own 'history' drawer never to see the light of day again. :)

However, I did really, really want to publish it when I was 11, but, rather than send the manuscript to anyone, I sent letters of inquiry to publishers (I found their addresses on their books) to ask how to go about getting published. Some of them were wonderful people and took the time to write back. I can never say how grateful I am to those folks who took those few minutes to put together some words of encouragement that kept me, a child, interested in publishing. I didn't publish anything else until ten years later, when the internet gave me access to fanfiction mailing lists, but I have never forgotten those letters.

What came of your first pieces, my fellow insecure writers, did they lead to anything, or were they just good practice?


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What's been bothering me for a while is that I'm not writing enough and I'm not achieving my goals. I haven't published a novel since The Burning Web, and I think I'm getting anxious, because I am getting close to finishing another, which is the sequel to Night Blood, but I've been close to finishing it for over a year!

I have been writing; blog posts mainly, which includes this year's A to Z Challenge, where I planned out an entire detective novel, The Case of the Cursed House. I have 2 novels over 50% complete, Ghost Blood, and an extended version of my novella, Bonds of Fire, plus I have a rewrite of the start of Sacrifice of An Angel to do. I think I'm getting anxious because I have so many irons in the fire, and now I just need to pick one and knuckle down and do it. Maybe that's what I need to do, admit to myself that I've been prevaricating way too long and get on with things. I'm going to write a list here and now:

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  • Finish Ghost Blood Draft #1
  • Rewrite the start of Sacrifice of An Angel
  • Finish Bonds of Fire Extended Version
  • Take The Case of the Cursed House plan and turn into Draft #1 

Now let's see if I can keep to it - I'll post an update next month.