Thursday, 27 October 2016

Getting Back to Where I Was...

Finally I've had some free time to get back to my Nottinghamshire short novel- lots of appointments at this time of year. :(

As I was retyping the first chapter of draft 2 from my print copy I found myself making a list of comments and notes as I went along, so these points could be dealt with in future drafts.

It was one of those 'if I don't write it down now I'll forget it' things.

So I got out a pack of file cards from my stationery stash (every writer has one of those don't they?), put the chapter number at the top of the first card, and then added the comments with the page or paragraph it related to.

(I know that when I've dealt with those in the third draft I'll likely have more notes to add, but I'm taking it one draft at a time...)

Once I'd finished retyping the chapter I saved it in three digital forms (after losing everything but the print copy I'm being triple careful this time); printed it out and put it into a plastic cover and popped the file card in with it.

I use those thin plastic sleeves that have holes already punched (for various types of file storage) and use green treasury tags to keep the chapters together. I can easily add the next sleeve behind it; then it goes into it's own file box- nothing more annoying than looking for that piece of paper with information you need and not knowing where it is, so everything goes in the box now.

Really I'd like to add a filing cabinet, but my office area doesn't have room for one at the moment- but that doesn't mean it will stay that way...

Though honestly, it's easier to create an office from a bare room, than it is to change one that has furniture you can't move elsewhere.

Do you have an office essential that makes your writing life easier?

One day I will get a filing cabinet...

Sunday, 16 October 2016

The Further Adventures of Carol...

Life has been a little chaotic in the last month, so getting away from the stresses has been a much needed break.

A couple of weeks ago it was meeting friends, Maria and Patsy.

Then this Friday is was the Leicester chapter meeting of the RNA (Romantic Novelists Association). There were a few recognisable faces from online, but also a number of people who I'd never met, or may have only seen or heard of their books, plus one very familiar face, Maria Smith.

I didn't take my camera, but there may be a photo on Maria's blog later this week.

It was one of those mornings when if something can go wrong, it will go wrong.

Having stopped to deal with an urgent phone call, it was a quick walk to the nearest tram stop. Unfortunately I was only half way along the footpath when the tram I'd intended to get pulled up at the station and then left.


9 minutes to the next tram. I'd probably miss the London train that would get me to Leicester with time to spare. The next train would be another half hour...

I'm one of those people who always allows extra time to get lost- if visiting somewhere I've never been before. I'd rather arrive twenty minutes early than twenty minutes late.

Fortunately the tram didn't break down- it does happen, and as it stops above the railway station, I was buying my train ticket within two minutes of arriving. And then down to the platform with the train waiting and five minutes to spare - phew!

That train was busy as it was one coach short- the one with the unreserved seats, but I found an empty seat that was only reserved from my destination, so thankfully I didn't have to stand.

As I had clear directions from the station I was only a little early, so all that worry for nothing. I'll be much better organised next time.

Back to work...
If you happen to see any pictures of me from Friday with a glass in my hand, my back was to the very warm radiator, and it wasn't that cold outside!

There are a number of RNA chapters across the country, each with their own style of meetings, so if you write romance and are interested, have a look here.

You can also read the RNA blog. The current interviewee Claire Harvey, also attended the Writing Historical Fiction workshop that I went to earlier in the year. Hearing her read then, I'm not surprised she was announced as the 2016 winner of the Joan Hessayon Award for New Writers.

Now, I need to get back to the work in progress, and hopefully a calmer few weeks...

image courtesy of  aechan &

Monday, 3 October 2016

When Writers Meet...

It's always fun to get-together with other writers and talk about the highs, and sometimes lows, of writing. It's even better when there's coffee and cake involved somewhere.

Over the weekend I finally got to meet (in person) a couple of my writing buddies (and fellow bloggers) Patsy Collins and Maria Smith. The three of us are also involved with #writingchat on Twitter on Wednesday evenings.

Carol, Maria and Patsy
A big thank you must be said to Patsy's very patient husband Gary, who took photos of the three of us together, with our cameras, before departing for the peace of the campervan.

The weather was not good; cool and threatening to rain, so we went for a walk first to burn up the calories, before we retreated to the warmth of the cafe for coffee and cake- and more talking.

Fortunately we were inside when the heavy rainfall started, and were only momentarily distracted by the thump from nearby thunder, and an impressive flash of lightning.

The hours passed quickly, and I'm sure anyone looking at us chatting away would never have known it was the first time we'd actually met. We've known each other online for some time, so we weren't really total strangers.

It's made me determined to get out and attend more events in the next twelve months, and hopefully meet a few more of the many writers I know from blogging and Facebook/Twitter...

Look out for Patsy's Tuesday blog post for some #writingchat news.

Horse on a diet

Across the gravel pit the clouds approach