Thursday, July 29, 2010

Here comes Summer

I remember being younger, much younger and finishing up the school year with a 5-6 week summer break. Summer holidays back then were great, the weather seemed better than it is now and, as kids, there was just so much fun to be had. The hols would normally entail:

  1. Wake Up
  2. Remember it's the school summer hols
  3. Smile whilst chasing the flush (if you're a boy you'll know what that means)
  4. Run downstairs
  5. Grab toast
  6. Run to a mate's house (with toast still in hand)
  7. Wake him up
  8. Eat more toast and watch one of: Charlie Brown, Why Don't You?, Scooby-doo, Littlest Hobo, The Raccoons (I could go on and on)
  9. Figure out what to do as you only had six weeks although you're convinced last year you had more.
  10. Play football, cricket, body surf, fish, video games (the commodore 128 back in those days of which only the c64 had games - why is that??)
  11. Pop home, make sandwiches (usually tomato ketchup, yes just tomato ketchup)
  12. Watch Neighbours (Kylie has never looked worse)- eat sandwiches
  13. Then continue any of the previous activities until you're called in for dinner far too early which gets wolfed down so you can go out again until the sun goes down.
  14. The next day - repeat as above.

This would only ever get interrupted by a serious irritation which was Sunday lunch with the family or the start of a test match which would involve playing cricket in the lounge whilst watching England lose to Courtney Walsh and Co.

Does life get any better than this??

Reluctantly, this now brings me to my studies, and now 20 odd years later we've also finished for the summer holidays. I say finished but that's not really the case, there's still lots of things to do - research, investigating plot irregularities (hmm), figuring out what works and what doesn't, tightening up the chapter outlines we did last week and a whole lot of reading on top of that.

Still, there's no deadlines for the next 5 weeks and that takes the regiment out of it for now which I'm grateful for, especially when I have a week in Ireland, a weekend in Alderney, the g/f's birthday, the sale of my flat and the move to a house all to look forward to in the coming weeks. Let's just hope the weather stays nice and I can add some beach, fishing, spearfishing and kayaking time to that list.

It's rubbish being an adult with adult responsibilities, but maybe just maybe, this Saturday morning I'll go wake someone with toast in hand, polystyrene surf board under arm, a 99p plastic football and some uselessly small cricket stumps and a dented cricket bat.

If only I could find that Commodore 128...

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Genre and Outline

This week is all about genre, how to set the scene from the start so that the reader has an idea of what’s coming at them.

Genre is a bit of a strange one for me, I always thought I would write horror fiction and indeed my first novel is treading these waters, but more recently I’ve become interested in thrillers, crime, fairytales, romance and comedy. So expect literature from me in the future in a variety of genres, with no doubt some overlapping.

I promised you that I would post up the outline for my first novel this week, well it appears below, and as it’s genre week then I guess it needs a label. As much as I hate labels, if I had to with my first novel, then I would say it’s dark romance.


Silence (working title)

Sophie’s wrist slashing would always be with him. Today his girlfriend would be buried, but Nick, through panic-stricken grief, would not attend. He offers no resistance to being relocated to a new home and a new life, far away from that scene, that memory.

There he meets his new neighbour Carrie. She, and a reclusive Nick form a reluctant friendship as they confide in each other.

As he battles with his unfamiliar surroundings, the locked doors, the haunting voices and footsteps, the isolation and the paranoia of falling in love all over again, Nick fears for his sanity.

His one saviour is Carrie.

But she has a story to tell.

Sophie’s story.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

New Writer Hits The Jackpot

Well ok, if like me, you’re not the world’s greatest fisherman in any way, shape or form, you’d also call catching a first bass spearfishing the highlight of recent weeks, months, years maybe. No longer can I be the butt of the (so when did you catch a bass ribbings), it’s finally done, and the success is sweet - the flesh too as 10 minutes later it was on the beach bbq and soon after, devoured. All that was missing was a glass of Chablis and some Jersey Royals.

Anyway so onto the writing. This week has been slow on that front but productive. Instead of writing we’ve been researching. My brainstorming session brought up all sorts of weird, wonderful but mainly morbid things I need to investigate and partake in this week. I should explain for those of you not in the know, which will be about half of the readership of this blog, yes all three of you, that I’m studying an MA in Professional Writing at University College Falmouth, although I’m not there, I’m here, it’s distance learning. Those of us on the course who have opted for the novel route are now beavering away on research for our novels and have all submitted outlines so check out next week’s blog for mine.

It’s been a busy few weeks, working on research, outlines, creating websites, twitter and blog accounts. Enjoy having a nosy around my new website, please become a member and feel free to send me a congratulatory email about that bass.