Sunday, 24 April 2016

The arriving of Marjorie

Marjorie has arrived. Unexpectedly too. Not thought about, not searched for, she just happened.

I have been doing a bit sort out and tidy up of the house after the last patch of renovation work to it, and had got as far as the paperwork, files, and general office and writing type of paraphanelia associated with running a home and being a writer. I need order, and although there was no dreadful chaos apart from on my desk, I do need to get the old box files changed to new ones, properly labelled and with the contents gone through to see what can be thrown out.

And it was as I was looking at the pile of box files on the shelf that my eyes landed on 'The Toddle' file, which are the notes that I made when I walked a long distance pathway in Kent, England, a lot of years ago. And as  I looked at the file on the shelf, with no intent to do anything with the notes other than to possible bin them, the name 'Marjorie' arrived. Ah, so the book, should I write it, will not be in the first person, but will be told through the person of Marjorie. Interesting! Another one of those inspirations from the Universe. I have no problem with book titles because they normally arrive before I write the book, and then I write the book to the title. I did this with 'Psychic Virgin', the first book I wrote, again from inspiration from the Universe. I would have never chosen that title, not having the courage to use is as a title, but I did it, I wrote the book.

Anyway, Marjorie has arrived. It will be interesting as where she will take me.

Bye for now,


Friday, 15 April 2016

Been a long time away.....

I have not been writing much since the last time I posted up a blog here, and just to say that I am still waiting for a clear direction to come in from the Universe, one that seems to be taking age to arrive I must say. Not to worry, there has lots been happening in my life, and my partners, which leads me to think that things are falling in to place, and that new writing will come along when it is meant to.

Meanwhile, I continue on with my Snippets blog, and that keeps me in touch with the writing process. If I do not keep the blog updated at least once a week, then I find the ability to write seems to drizzle away in my head, so that when I do come to write it takes a lot of stops and starts before I can connect with a reasonable flow of words again.

While I wait for the new writing to happen, I have started posting up my first book, 'Psychic Virgin', onto my 'Diary of a Psychic Lady' blog. I am not sure why I need to do this, other than it was the first book I wrote and taught me so very much about how to write, not only in getting the words out of my head, but also the actual process of getting a book self published. Perhaps that is why I have instinctively felt that after several years of not writing, that this should be the one to start off the momentum again. But I am not severely editing it, just copying it straight from the original. It is easing me into the saddle again, which is a blessing, although I have always been nervous about the title of the book, but the title was given to me very clearly from the Universe early one morning, so the title has to be as it is. I do feel nervous, though, because I have now put links to the Diary of a Psychic Lady on the front page of my Snippets blog. I am not sure how my fellow blogging friends on Snippets are going to react to reading about the psychic side of myself. Oh well, time will tell.

I got no further with finding out about ebooks, but feel that ebooks are definitely the way to go. Because there are no publishing costs involved, the books can be sold at a low price, which I think is fair to the reader.

I took all the books I have written so far out of the self publishing arena a couple of years ago. It seemed the right thing to do. I don't know why, it just felt that I had to go silent for a while. But I never gave up hoping that the books would get read, it didn't feel the right time, that's all.

Anyway, my friend, whoever you are........ just needed to connect with this blog again, so I suppose that I am actually starting to write properly again!


Saturday, 11 December 2010

The Unblocking Of Self

Desperately I have tried to get back into the saddle with my writing, after having been diverted away by the demands of smallholding life. Or rather, I allowed myself to become diverted. I was in full flow with a 20, 000 word book, with the words tumbling out at a steady pace, late last Winter. And then Spring arrived, seducing me with its desire to start things growing in the garden. So I left behind my writing pathway and off out into the garden I went, growing pots of seeds, digging, and planting, and watering, and so on.

Then the animals started arriving, pulling me even further away from my writing pathway. And I allowed it to happen, that is what is most frustrating, although I kept up with blogging, but even slowing down with that.

And so my writing creativity grew rusty. Unused, my vocabulary shrank.

But I didn't forget the writing. Just kept putting it off. Meanwhile, I tried to keep on with the editing of Psychic Toolbox. It was useless. So I put that to one side as well.

Winter has arrived once more, and with it the long days inside. The garden still calls, but I can switch off its demands because of the cold. We are getting used to farm life as well, so I have more time-gaps.

And I have realised that without the writing I am not who I am meant to be. So I have made a super duper effort to climb back into the saddle, and I am making a promise to myself to keep on sitting in that saddle and not let myself dismount at all.

And I have realised that I cannot write from my head alone. What I mean is, that to have any sort of word flow I have to be balanced and calm in myself, which is a really difficult state of mind for me to achieve.

So this morning I decided to make time for a meditation. This I have to do if I am going to keep riding along my writing pathway. And for the first time in an age, I woke up this morning with a 'writing sentence' in my head. It is to do with the synopsis of Psychic Toolbox, which I am having difficulty in writing. But at least the edits are done at last. Hopefully I can now pick up the word flow for that shorter book, which is to be a free download.

So, tapping away.......and hoping you are moving along your creative pathway at a cracking pace as well!

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Ho Hum Part Two

I have completely fallen out of the saddle with writing since I last posted. Other things seem to be pulling me away. But perhaps it is avoidance. Writing is not something which I can plan. The words either arrive in my head or I don't. But first I have to make the effort to want to write, and sometimes making that effort, is well, just too much effort. 

However, I have become quite down in myself as a result. As if part of myself is missing. And so I seek out this part of myself which is hidden. The writing self. That self which is the best of me. 
Meanwhile, needing to keep a record of our work here makes me write the blogs, keeps me engaged with the art of writing. I think this is a good way to keep in touch with the writing self when other words do not seem to want to come. Even making comments on other people's blogs helps keep in touch with the word flow. 

But I think that probably September is favourite for starting writing again. When the year is winding down perhaps I will be able to rev up!


Saturday, 27 March 2010

Ho Hum

Being a proper writer one must have the courage to look at one's work in a constructive manner, and know when one has not put forth the message that one aspired to make at the start of the current tome. 

In other words, major rewrite under way as I recognise that I am way off base with Psychic Toolbox. Ho hum. It is far too dreary a read, and needs perking up a hell of a lot. Ho hum. 

Help, I need an editor

Boiling with impatience, I am plugging my way through the final edit on 'Psychic Toolbox'. Having to read the text, then change what needs to be changed is damned hard. Always I have to avoid the tendency to start re-writing it, and focus on the job in hand which is to get it reading smoothly. But just changing one word in a sentence because I have already used it a few words previously can throw out the whole sentence, and sometimes the whole paragraph, so I have to be careful of what I alter. 

Also I have found a difficulty with reading and editing in the same space, which is up at my PC, because my mind gets fogged up after a while. I want to get this edit done, so am finding it easier to read the book and mark  up the errors whilst lolloping on my settee in the house, then back to the PC for the actual changes. Takes longer, but my mind doesn't get so tired. 

Psychic Virgin: Have finally finished reformatting PV and have uploaded it to Smashwords, who have converted it so it can be read on many ebook readers, and am waiting to see if it will be accepted for their ebook listings. 

Smashwords have an interesting philosphy, which is let the reader read up to fifty percent of the book before purchase. I think this is an excellent idea. In a book shop I would browse a book before purchase, and this is doing the same thing. I already post up chunks of the books on the website, and I have made available at Lulu a couple of chapters. 

Wasn't particularly fussed about ebooks and ebook readers in the beginning, but after browsing the listings at Smashwords, I am beginning to see the value to this new technology. I don't think books will ever cease to be, but I think that ebooks will share their space as well in the future. 

Ok, so back to the editing task,.....

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Formatting frazzle

Psychic Toolbox update: It arrived a couple of weeks ago from Lulu. Doesn't look too bad. Cover OK. Matches the first book. Have a feeling that all these covers will be reworked at some point in the future, preferably by someone else! Now for the next stage of re-reading and re-editing. Won't be as bad as the first, Psychic Virgin, though. It is shorter, and less complicated. Writing about one's life in a funny way so one's reader is not bored out of their skull, well, it was a supremely difficult task. 

And I have been putting off further publishing work with PV, and let it dawdle away at Lulu and Amazon, not doing much at the moment but then I knew it would take a time to get going. My stumbling block has been getting to grips with the ebook formula. Lulu will convert the text to ebook format, but you have to pay if you want it go out on a wide range of readers. Anyway, I have got it out on Lulu's pdf reading service, which is free, and I think it can be read on Sony readers now, as well as on PC's. 
And then I found a website called 'Smashwords', which gave a very helpful description of what I needed to do to get the text of PV into the right format for conversion to the various ebook formats. Now all I have to do is undo ALL the formatting I did for the book form of PV. 
Flip me, but that was the biggest of stumbling blocks for me: how to format a book. Which means getting headers running through the book which are in the right sequence, as well as the page numbers. Then there is the Table of Contents to do. And the long task of making sure the script looks right on each page. Using page breaks in the right place. And trying to be very tidy with the general look of the book. 
All that goes out of the window with ebook formatting. I have had to delete all that previous book formatting from the script and start over again. Apparently the text has to float according to the type of reader which is being used to view the book, so there can't be any line breaks, no faddly fonts, nothing fancy, just plain text written in Word. And I can't make the individual pages look tidy by sculpting the text into an attractive shape, which is something which took ages to do when working on the book format. 
Funnily enough, it took quite a load off me, not having to give the page a 'good look'. I felt like I was handing that responsibility over to my reader, who can then play around with the look of the book themself. Apparently the font and the line spacing can be changed on a reader. 
So, I have spent a couple of days reformatting PV into the format required at Smashbooks, who then convert it to formats suitable for a wide range of readers. And it is a free service, like Lulu, and they take commission if you sell your ebook through them. I really like this site, it is easy to follow, and the instuctions clearly given. To be recommended. 

A bit of a shock with PV. On reformatting it for Smashbooks, I realised that the edition I OK'd with Lulu for distribution was not the actual edition I had worked on last. I had changed the first chapter's first page. But I had shipped out to Lulu a previous edit. Ooops! For a moment I felt a chill run up and down my spine! But on reading that original front page, then re-reading my newer edit, I realised that the original was the better one to go with. So, not to worry. But I think some re-edited typos might have gone through as well. Good job I make an apology for this in the preface pages: I say that I am a cottage industry type of book because I have done all the work on it myself, and that I apologise for any errors which might have escaped the net. 
I hope, in the future, to have someone read the books for such errors, but I can't afford the services of such a person at the moment, so I have to manage as best I can. The same as I can't afford a graphic artist for the coverwork, but hopefully in the future that will change. I don't mind doing the editing and graphic work, but it burns up time.

Have nearly finished the formatting for Smashwords, and will upload in a day or so. Meanwhile, on to re-editing PT, and am also writing a 20,000 word ebook, possibly to also go to a book if it is not too small for Lulu to publish as such.

Well, that's all for now. I would have liked to have given more info about ebook formatting versus book formatting, but time ran out on me. I hope you are continuing to be inspired with your own writing, and that you don't give up despite the many setbacks that one can suffer whilst trying to stay on the writing pathway.