author, University, writing

When University Gets In The Way

“University’s like this little world, a bubble of time separate from everything before and everything after.”

Mhairi McFarlane

I do love studying, and I have said that many times before, however it does sometimes get in the way of my creativity.

During a semester I am filled with stress and constantly studying. It stifles a lot of my creativity and makes it harder to get creative writing done. It’s more just one report after another.

It is fun going through my degree and learning as much as I am, but it is hard to accept that I am very unproductive in my creative life for several months out of the year. I do commit myself to my studies though, and sometimes that does require some sacrifices.

“Assiduity, it means sit down until you do it. Commit yourself to your work and study.”

Lucas Remmerswaal

I do try to fit writing in during a semester, and early on I can get some done. But I get burnt out very quickly. Between work and full-time studies, I can’t focus on writing or keeping up with my creative outlets. It can be really frustrating for me, as all I want to do is write and creatively express myself!

Person Writing on Notebook

It can be sad thinking about the lack of writing, but it’s not a major thing to be sad about, but it does get to me sometimes. I know I spend many months outside of classes being productive, and I just have to lean on that and accept that Uni does get in the way of writing.

It’s all for an end goal and one day I will graduate with a psychology degree and continue in my world of writing!

“I do not know anyone who has got to the top without hard work. That is the recipe. It will not always get you to the top, but it should get you pretty near.”

Margaret Thatcher
author, holidays, pandemic, writing

Writing During The Holiday Season

“Freshly cut Christmas trees smelling of stars and snow and pine resin—inhale deeply and fill your soul with wintry night.”

John J. Geddes

I love this time of year. I love spending time with family and enjoying Christmas together. It really is a magical time of year.

I’ve well and truly put up all my Christmas decorations and I’m 90% done with presents! I love being able to give to people and being able to see their faces and feel their joy when they open their presents.

It’s a time of joy, and a time of giving. It’s beautiful, but it is also incredibly busy. My work picks up around the holidays so I’m currently getting a lot of shifts. It’s nice, but it also means that I’m very on the go.

“Christmas is most truly Christmas when we celebrate it by giving the light of love to those who need it most.”

Ruth Carter Stapleton

It’s hard to find time to sit out during the chaos and get some writing done. I find it important not to beat myself up during this time – not writing is fine over the holiday season!

I don’t panic too much right now – I used to kick myself down so much when I wasn’t writing during these holiday times. I’ve thankfully learnt that it is okay, it’s a very busy time and I’m bound to spend less time writing.

I am trying to sit out and get a little writing done where I can, but I’m not forcing it on myself and I know that it’s going to be hard over this season. I figure, once we’re through the holiday season I will be able to get cracking full-time into my writing once again!

But for now, I’m going to enjoy the Christmas season and not stress about writing heaps!

“Christmas now surrounds us, Happiness is everywhere. Our hands are busy with many tasks as carols fill the air.”

Shirley Sallay
author, pandemic, writing, Writing

Reading Is My Happy Place

“Books are good company, in sad times and happy times, for books are people – people who have managed to stay alive by hiding between the covers of a book.”

E.B. White

I love a good book. I love being able to sit down and enjoy a cup of coffee with a book. It really is my happy place.

There are so many amazing books out there, and I make a habit of reading for at least an hour a day (as much as possible). I love being able to immerse myself into these characters and leave my own worries behind.

It’s fun being able to immerse yourself into a different world. I love being able to put myself into the character’s shoes and walk through their trials and triumphs with them.

Each novel is unique and writing styles vary drastically. It’s so important to keep reading different books and seeing different styles of writing and immersing yourself into different worlds.

It helps me to remain focused on my own writing style and my own character development. It’s fun being able to use different books as inspiration in my own writing and being able to utilise different techniques in writing.

Primarily, I just love being able to get away for an hour or so and indulge in a good book. I love the serenity it brings me and the joy. There is something truly special about curling up with a book and leaving your own world behind.

“The person who deserves most pity is a lonesome one on a rainy day who doesn’t know how to read.”

Benjamin Franklin
author, pandemic, writing

How My Study Influences My Writing

“By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.”

Confucius

I am one of those few people who enjoy studying. I haven’t had a bad time during my years studying and I do enjoy learning and growing through my study.

I have found throughout my years studying, I have learnt so many valuable skills. I have learnt more about human interaction and how to write appropriately.

I learnt that fancy words often aren’t better than simple words and I learnt how to appropriately structure a sentence.

Studying definitely isn’t for everybody, but I do enjoy expanding my mind and learning more things.

“Man’s mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.”

Oliver Wendell Holmes

My psychology degree is incredibly influential towards my writing. Not only do I enjoy the degree, but I am learning a lot about human behaviour and mental illnesses that I can use in my writing.

I love being able to introduce psychological elements into my writing. I’ve become more interested in psychological thrillers and I’m even considering writing one when my current novel is complete.

Studying is definitely a fun world for me and it influences my writing so much. I won’t be studying my whole life, but I’m enjoying the short time I am studying and using as much knowledge as I can in my writing.

“There is no substitute for hard work.”

Thomas Edison
author, holidays, mental health, writing

Getaways Rejuvenate Your Mind and Soul

“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.”

Ibn Battuta

I have always loved holidays and travel. I love being able to explore places and get away from my day to day routine.

Unfortunately, travel in our current COVID pandemic is an issue. With countries and even states shut down, it’s hard to get away and travel.

I am so grateful that my country has opened up in-state travel, as I was recently able to take a little holiday away from the mundane daily life.

My husband and I went on a trip to a city a few hours away from us and we spend a few days resting and relaxing. We were able to explore a little and do some fun activities, as most tourism destinations have opened up again (only for people within the country of course).

I found it really beneficial having this holiday. It helped me to calm my mind and allow my normal inspiration to flow once again.

It is so incredibly beneficial for your mental health to take breaks and take time to relax. I found it so helpful to wind down for a few days and rejuvenate my mind and soul.

“We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.”

Jawaharial Nehru

My creativity has jumped again and I’m able to write more and the ideas are flowing once again! It is incredibly helpful to spend some time away and be able to relax like we were able to.

It’s hard getting back into the daily grind, but I am finding it a lot easier to work and study and write again after my few days away.

I definitely can not wait until the next holiday!

“Adventure is worthwhile.”

Aesop
author, pandemic, writing

Infection Point Excerpt

“Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

I decided that it would be nice to post just a little except from my novel. Not much, but hopefully enough to keep you wanting more! Progress is slow, but it is happening, and I am getting so much closer to having a ready-to-go novel!

It’s nice to be able to put a little bit out there and see what it’s like to the public. I know I’m quite a way off getting it published and out there, but I enjoy being able to share little snippets as I can!

I hope you enjoy reading my little snippet!

Grace stood alone, surrounded by untamed weeds and forests of trees. The red sun threw lifeless light onto the land, highlighting the grey tinge to the grass. Rubble could be seen strewn throughout the grass and echoes of what was once a road peeped through the overgrown weeds. Grace’s red hair was jaggedly cut at shoulder-length, with her fringe just above her eyes. Her brown eyes flickered as she watched the small lizards crawl across the land, determined to have the nearby spider for lunch. She lifted her gaze upwards, recognising movement within an old city ahead of her. A determined frown settled on her face as she purposefully moved forward. Usually she avoided cities like this, but she needed supplies – she had no option other than to search this city and hope that there was some form of medicine within.

iNFECTION pOINT BY EMILIE TURNER