author, writing, Writing

Unveiling Shadows: A Captivating Journey into the Pages of a New Novel

My next blog post is actually going to be the first chapter of my new project! It’s taken a lot of time and planning to be able to start writing but it’s exciting to start fleshing out the characters in their world.

I started this project after a competition I entered a while ago. It was a short story competition with an interesting premise and I just ran with it! My brain wanted a new project to click on to and this was a perfect opportunity.

I’m still slowly editing my first novel, and I’m confident I’ll be able to submit it to publishers soon. But I needed a bigger project to also focus on amongst the short stories and editing. Writing a novel is what I love doing most and I’m loving getting back into world-building and character development on a larger scale!

I wrote the first chapter and now I’ve started proper world-building – a separate Word document filled with characters, important plot points, and a basic storyline. I’m not 100% sure where I’m headed with the story yet so I really needed to sit down and flesh it all out.

I’ve got an entire document set up outlining the characters, the world, and the basic storyline. I have no idea what the end is or who the antagonist is but that’s something that I will be fleshing out over the coming weeks! I love having a new project to focus on and it’s really exciting to delve into it.

I’ve been getting distracted easily at the moment and have several WIP novels that are gathering dust in my computer folders… I’m hopeful this one will get further than those! I am still passionate about a few projects but many get put aside when I lose interest or realise the story is going absolutely nowhere. Usually, they end up as short stories instead!

I’m eager to delve into a full novel again though and I’m hopeful this is my new project! Hopefully, you enjoy the first chapter next week!

author, holidays, University, writing

Life Update: How It’s All Going Behind The Scenes. Easter and More!

I swear every time I write a post I have the same thing to say, but it has been a crazy few weeks! Life with a toddler is absolutely no joke, I barely have the time to sit down and think any more. It’s exhausting but also fun and entertaining. However, I am finding myself far more drained than usual. I’m currently growing new life, for lack of a better description, and that has seriously drained the energy out of me. Didn’t think it was possible to be this tired but damn, I am exhausted!

I’ve had to drop a few classes in my Uni degree. I just can’t find the energy or brain power to focus completely on all the classes I had. I’m down to just one subject now and I’m working on completing this class and slowly plodding my way towards my degree!

Of course, I’m also spending the evening’s writing. I can’t stop my passion and my brain is more wired to write than study at the moment so I decided to just lean into it and allow the creative juices to flow the way they want. It sucks having to drop Uni classes, but I know it’s for the best. There’s no point trying to force myself to complete the topics and submitting sub-par work. I’d much rather submit work that I’m proud of and achieve better results over a longer period of time.

I think it’s important to try to be present with whatever it is you’re doing. And if you can’t be present, take a break. 

Emily Giffin

Easter is also fast approaching, which is wild! How are we already in April and already closing in on Easter? The year is already going by so fast! It’ll be Christmas again before we know it, I swear! Easter, like most holidays, is quite busy for my little family. We have a few things going on but I’m looking forward to spending time with family and friends and rejuvenating in the holiday season.

I’m focusing more on my writing at the moment and making it a priority whenever I can. It’s hard when I’m constantly exhausted and drained but I do try to spend a little time each day writing and prioritising my goals. I never want to stop writing and I’m still aiming towards finishing editing my novel and finishing my new story.

Since I’ve dropped down to one subject for Uni I do have some more time to focus on writing. I’m going to spend extra time absorbing myself in my writing, when I can of course! I still need the brain power to be able to write and that’s a little hard to come by at the moment. It’s just a temporary bump in the road, but it’s definitely a bit frustrating. I’m determined to keep plodding along though and keep pressing forward each day!

Never give up on something that you can’t go a day without thinking about.

Winston Churchill
author, nanowrimo, writing

NaNoWriMo Is Over Again!

It’s over for another year! Honestly, I did not do too well this year. I spoke about my obstacles in the last blog and nothing got overly better over the past week.

For the first time in like… 10 years I did not complete NaNoWriMo. Feels crazy that I didn’t but it’s not the end of the world.

I’m planning on recovering over December and getting my health back on track for January. Sickness has been ravaging the house and I need to feel better, and have my family better, in order to effectively write again.

December is always busy. The holiday season is a mad-rush time and so much is happening. I’m planning on doing some small writing here and there but after the month from hell that was November… I’m excited to rest a bit and recover more.

When January kicks off I will be smashing out the writing! I wrote the first few chapters of my NaNo novel and I’m eager to share the first chapter here with you all next week! Just gotta edit it a little first.

author, nanowrimo, writing

NaNoWriMo: When Nothing Goes To Plan

Honestly, this month has been pure torture for my family. We went through a serious bout of RSV, felt okay for a few days and now we’ve been knocked out with gastro.

My husband is diabetic, so we’ve had to be incredibly careful with him with gastro and we’ve been to the hospital and bed-ridden and it’s been insane.

Somewhat thankfully I caught it first so I’m like… 60% recovered while he’s struggling in the pits of it. But our toddler doesn’t stop and it’s been pure chaos (thankfully no sick toddler yet!)

I am so behind on NaNo that I don’t even want to think about it at the moment. I’m a bit of a perfectionist, and that coupled with my ADHD has had me feeling like a failure this past few weeks.

Obviously, I am definitely not! I know it logically and I know it’s okay to not complete a NaNo one year but it is a major bummer. I was really excited to spend the month bunkering down with my writing but it’s ended up being a dreadful November for me and the fam.

I took a step back last week to calm my mind and anxieties and remember that sometimes other things come up and that’s perfectly okay. Writing is always there for me and when we’re all better I can return to writing at my own pace.

I’m going to continue to write a bit for NaNo if we all turn a corner soon. I have a few chapters done but I’m obviously nowhere near the 50,000 word mark and there’s next to no chance I’ll hit it!

And that’s okay! Being the perfectionist I am, it took a bit to be okay with that but there’s nothing wrong with not meeting this deadline. There’s always December or January to make my own deadline and there’s always NaNo next year! We’ll see where I’m at next week when NaNo ends!

author, nanowrimo, writing

NaNoWriMo Weeks 1 & 2: My Reality

NaNoWriMo definitely did not start as expected! It officially kicked off last week right as I came down with a serious sinus infection. My son has been sick as well so it was not a productive time!

I had planned out my time so well but all my planning fell to the wayside with the illnesses ravaging my house. Our health comes first so I haven’t done nearly as much as planned.

We are all on the mend now, thank goodness, and I’m starting to write a bit more each day. I have some serious writing to do to catch up now though! Usually you can break up the word limit into 30 days but now I have basically half that time to fit in almost the same amount of words.

It’s going to be very crazy but I am determined! I may not hit the 50,000 words but I’m gonna do my best to try to get there!

Hopefully there’s no more sickness and I can power on with the writing!

author, holidays, University, writing

Prepping For A Big Month

September is going to be huge! There’s a lot to do during this month and it will be borderline chaos! My sister is getting married, assessments are due and my little boy turns 1!

Things are definitely chaotic. I’m still entering some short story competitions here and there (I was gifted a free membership for Vocal+ which I’m taking advantage of and entering comps there) as well as writing and editing my books. It adds extra things on top of everything else though!

I’m going to take the month of September off writing. Maybe not completely, but I am going to take a breather and not write as often as I normally do. I don’t particularly have the time at the moment to write. I mean, technically I am still writing for University assessments but it doesn’t quite count.

I’ll keep an eye on some short story competitions in case I want to throw in an entry, but I’m not going to put any pressure on myself or try to write because I have to. I do love writing, don’t get me wrong, but it has become my job and I think it’s time for a bit of a ‘annual leave.’

I’ll still do my blogs but since September is so incredibly busy I won’t be super active. I’m going to prioritise family in this busy month since so much is happening! I’ll be back into writing in October, ready to prep for NaNoWriMo!

author, University, writing

Rainstorms, Family, and University

It’s been a rainy few months here! It’s been very wet so far and winter is looking rainier than usual! Personally, I love rainstorms and find so much inspiration when it’s raining! On the downside, I have a 9-month-old who would very much like to get outside every so often.

And we’re also back into the grind! University is back in session and it’s a little overwhelming this time around.

I’m in a new degree – it still feels strange to have dropped my psych degree. I definitely feel confident and happy with my decision, but it still feels weird.

Add onto that the fact I’m doing a Masters and not a Bachelor and things get crazy. It’s already a lot harder – more readings, more homework, and harder assessments. But I am really enjoying it.

I’m now trying to figure out how to juggle everything. University on top of working and being home with a child is really tough. Where I would usually write I have to do University and I have to find time in there for working and also still writing. Definitely going to be a busy few months!

My writing may slow down over the next little while – University and my family are more important right now. However, I’m going to try to keep writing a little bit here and there so that I don’t do nothing! That said, I will be writing short stories in my degree so I guess I won’t be stopping my writing at all!

I’m looking forward to November as well. Uni will be over for the year and I’ll be able to get back into writing by going through NaNoWriMo once again! I don’t overly slow down much but that’s okay, I enjoy what I’m doing and they’ll be time for breaks later!

author, writing

Submitting A Book For Publication

This feels absolutely surreal! I didn’t know if I was going to make my goal, but I did! It’s not exactly submitted for publication but it’s definitely a big step! I entered my novel into a novel competition, a huge one run by Allen & Unwin.

I don’t know how it will go, but I feel so much pride and joy over the fact that I finally edited my book to completion and was able to feel confident enough about it to send it in! It’s definitely intimidating, but so very worth it!

I won’t know about the results of the competition for quite a long time. I’m going to start cracking on a new book while waiting! Even if I don’t win the competition, I’m happy that I finished my novel and I can always send it in to publishing companies if I don’t win!

Finally finishing my novel is just so crazy. I was beginning to think it wouldn’t happen! But I was able to crack through everything and I got it done! I really needed a push to get it done, and once I got that push I smashed through the rest of the editing and here we are!

Fingers crossed I hear back and double fingers grossed that I win!!

author, mental health, writing

Life Update

Life has been hectic so far this year! Time goes past so fast when you are busy and throw a child into the mix! I’m not working at the moment, but I’ve found so many ways to fill my time. Not to mention its hard to do anything when you have a loud, energetic, moving 8 month old!

I’ve made a huge decision regarding my University studies in recent months. I decided to drop my psychology course and focus on my true passion of writing. I do love psychology and it is so interesting, but a future as a psychologist is not my priority anymore and I do really want to do what I’m passionate about!

On that note, I have enrolled in a Masters of Creative Writing. It’s going to be hard, but I really wanted to focus on my passions and by pursuing the Masters I can always work at a University as a teacher. I think it opens up several opportunities in the future, when my son is older, and I’m eager to follow these opportunities.

I definitely did enjoy psychology, but not as much as I love writing. A friend of mine recently said, essentially, ‘just do it’ and it references a lot of things in my life. I tend to stay back in fear of failure or being noticed (which, as an introvert, is not ideal). But I need to just move forward and do what I feel to do!

Writing is my passion. I have been blessed with a talent for writing so I’m going to pursue this passion fully. I’m looking forward to see where this degree leads me! I also get to study at home, since it’s fully online, and I am definitely happy to stay home with my little boy and study while he naps!