clhollandwriter: (Default)
It's been a long time since I last posted (a loooong time). That's life. I'd recently started a new job and joined the gym on last update, and they kind of took over. Between training, building up experience, more training, more building up experience, new job ate up most of my processing power. The gym, it turned out, ate the only hour in my (working) day that wasn't taken up by work or being mentally tired. It also ate up the only hour until I got home where I wasn't in company, which turned out to matter more than I thought.

Long story short, I've been mentally and physically knackered for most of the last nine months. I've written one thing, a piece of flash which I hope I'll be able to give a publication date for soon (yay!), and that's it.

The thing is, I assumed it was all the job, but when I got comfortable after the second round of training my stress levels and general crankiness didn't change - except on the days I didn't go to the gym. I'd dropped back from five days to three and it didn't help, except that on the days off I didn't get out of bed hating the world.

So last week I didn't go to the gym at all. I spent the hour reading, checking emails, and generally chilling out instead.You know what? I felt better. I didn't ache all week, my knees didn't hurt, I wasn't tired and stressed, and I didn't wake up wanting to set the world on fire. Apparently a busy gym, where I'm never sure which equipment I'll actually be able to get to, a packed and too hot changing room, queuing for grubby showers, and rushing to get to my desk, was exactly what I didn't need.

The next step is to reclaim that hour for writing, but it's hard to get going again from a dead stop. I've bought a Reckless Deck and the book Tarot for Writers in an attempt to generate prompts and ideas. At the moment the only thing standing in the way is me. Let's hope it's not another nine months before I  have something to post.
clhollandwriter: (Default)
Since we're at the beginning of the month, and there's still plenty of time for Christmas shopping, I thought I'd start with a gift idea. Courtesy of The Literary Gift Company, here's the Writer's Block Notebook - a notebook that looks like a block. For writers.

If all else fails, I guess you could prop up a table leg with it.
clhollandwriter: (Default)
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"And a very merry Unbirthday to you!"
clhollandwriter: (block)

I have a problem: I hate my novel.

Something about it's just not working for me and I can't figure out what. I've got my initial problem, my characters, a chunk of worldbuilding, but it's just doesn't feel right and I'm finding it really hard to stay motivated.

I'm trying to remember how it felt when I started Reunion. That was a NaNoWriMo project, and I ran at it full-pelt for a month. The only things I had when I started was the opening lines and a question - who would be raising long-dead mercenaries from the grave and why? By the time I stopped writing it I loved spending time with the characters. At the moment I'm just not feeling it for the new project.


clhollandwriter: (Default)
This part's just me moping. )

Even after the kick-in-the-pants that was WotF, keeping the momentum going is hard.

So, in the spirit of promoting the shiny, here's the book trailer for Writers of the Future Vol. 25.

Someone's posted a review of the book on the forum at Asimov's. (Beware spoilers if you read this thread.) I can live with my story being described as "read[ing] a bit like Tennyson's The Lady of Shalott as rewritten by Patricia McKillip, with the tiniest of nods to China Mieville." :-D

*This isn't me seeking validation for Reunion, by the way, just noting that it does have some major flaws (one of the central characters being largely unlikeable, and a distinct lack of female characters until about halfway through, for a start), and wondering if I can fix them.
clhollandwriter: (Default)
I've been hit with the depression stick again, which is really annoying. I know why I'm depressed (hormones and a string of small but really irritating things going wrong) but that doesn't seem to make me feel any better. If anything it makes me feel worse, because I know it's stupid to feel this way but I can't help it. Damn you, female reproductive system! *shakes fist*

If you don't want to hear me whinging, look away now. )
clhollandwriter: (Default)
I'm currently suffering from a bout of "writer's meh." It's not that I don't have the ideas, it's just that I can't get enthusiastic enough to do anything about them. I hope that the new challenge up at LH, the "original zombie story" challenge, will do something about that as it sounds like fun.

I've just finished reading Orson Scott Card's How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy, which was an interesting read. He certainly made me think differently about sci fi, something I haven't written since I was a teenager. Now I've moved on to The Satyricon, just because. After that I'm not sure, possibly I'll have another look at Ursula LeGuin's The Language of the Night, which I bought for my MA and never finished. It's still got all my labelled bookmarks sticking out of it. I seem to have swung away from trash fiction lately, for no apparent reason. Now I'm on non-fiction (all my shiny new and second-hand refernece books I haven't read yet) and classics. It's probably a backlash against reading the last six Sandman graphic novels in one go.

In the spirit of being educational, my boyfriend's just bought the World at War box set and is watching that in the evenings. It's something they should show again, although it's too dry to keep the attention of most people these days. It's something that needs to be shown though. Apparently 1 in 4 people in the UK think that Churchill was a myth, and at the weekend the boyfriend encountered a teenager who actually asked (on spotting him playing a WW2 wargame) what World War Two was.
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I'm currently suffering from a major bout of writer's block. Maybe it's because of the pressure of my resolution to submit something every month, but I can't seem to focus on anything. Don't get me wrong, I've got the ideas, it's just that the words won't come. *sigh*

I did the flash challenge at LH at the weekend. It was a struggle (I stared at the screen for about ten minutes before I even had an idea) but I got something done in the end. The story seems to be popular even though nobody's voting for it, so at least that's something. :-) 
clhollandwriter: (Default)
I'm suffering from a bit of an apathy attack at the moment, brought on by being overtired. The moon's very bright at night, and our pathetically thin blinds jus' cannae take the strain, Cap'n! Because of it I've been tired and grumpy all week. Luckily I've got tomorrow off and I intend to be very lazy, or else spend the whole day in the kitchen making nice things to eat.

I got a short story finished the other day (One of Three, a modern interpretation of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner), which I plan to submit. Unfortunately my beta-readers have been less than helpful. One really didn't like it but couldn't say why, one liked it but couldn't say why, and the third hasn't got back to me at all. The other story I was going to write just isn't going to happen: it's most definitley a non-starter. It's a shame, as it was something else I was going to submit, but it's better not to force a story that can't even get off the ground.

I appear to have written myself into a corner in Reunion again: if you kidnap a water mage and take him somewhere by ship there's no way you're going to leave him able to cast. So how exactly am I supposed to have him sink the ship...?

March 2019

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