Showing posts with label performance. Show all posts
Showing posts with label performance. Show all posts

Thursday 5 November 2015

Once you Start Writing...

writing can be like a
dripping tap...
Once you start writing it's like a dripping tap, it never stops...

I really shouldn't have said I'm going to do chapter two this week, as the inevitable other problems and demands disrupted my days- not helped by over-sleeping.

Plus I had to write a 250 word story for Wednesday night's annual Manuscript of the Year competition at the writers' club (yesterday, 4th). Plus I was one of the two readers for the event.

I've had months to write it, but nothing I considered developed. Then Tuesday night reading a post on Facebook, I had one of those lightning moments of inspiration for this year's theme, 'slippery when wet'.

So Wednesday lunchtime I settled down and began to write. The words just poured out without thinking about it. I stopped at 400 plus words.

Of course it was much too long, so I started editing. I reduced the start, cut the middle and still had 342 words.

More cutting and changing left me with 262, so a bit more jiggling and I finally lost those 12 extra words.

I knew I'd lost too much of the story, and it was only humorous at the end, but it was an entry, and every entry helps make the competition.

My character, Valerie, finally decides to leave her demanding but dense partner Derek (apologies to any Derek's out there). He really should have got that tree in the front garden sorted out when she originally asked earlier in the year- one of his many faults. But of course, he hadn't and along comes autumn, lots of fallen leaves and rain.

I think you can guess what happens...

The club chairman said she thought Valerie had been out with a broom earlier piling up the leaves. :D

I really must give Valerie a new future somewhere now I know her- she deserves it.

Ten years ago managing to write a 1,000 word story was tough; but over the years the length of my stories rose naturally: 1200, 1600, 2,000.

Now I'm writing longer stories it's harder to write short ones!

image courtesy of Mister GC.&

Saturday 29 June 2013

I Survived the Last Day!

Just popping in to say I'm back from the last day of the Lowdham Book Festival.

It was an early start from home, and cool.  But by midday was warm and sunny, which is always encouraging.

Nottingham and the surrounding areas had quite a few events going on, including Armed Forces Day; but I'm glad to say lots of people did come to the Festival even if they left it later...

Many of the free talks were full and people had to be turned away as capacity had been reached.

A good sign this year was people actually buying new books (and not necessarily those by well-known writers) and not just second-hand ones.

When there was a temporary lull in footfall I was able to leave the writers' club stall to look at books. I bought a new (signed by the author) book for my OH (who drives me to events, goes home and then comes to collect me later).

And I found a 1978 book on fans (the decorative type for wafting in your face) for £3, for myself, so I was happy.

The Fringe at the Ship event went well (more later with pictures) and my lighter contemporary stories were appreciated - at least those listening laughed at the right points and clapped at the end of each one without prompting... :-)

It's been a long day and I'm going to catch-up on Facebook, and sift through the growing list of e-mails that invariably fill my inbox on a Friday night/Saturday morning...

When the pictures arrive from the NWC photographer, I will share a few of them...

Hope Sunday's weather is just as good, so I can recover...

Tuesday 16 April 2013

Back To Writing...

It's always hard get back into routine after a break, and that certainly goes for writing too.

I was at a difficult point in my manuscript just before the Easter holidays and having had a break for a few weeks, I've had the necessary time to sort out what was bothering me- my heroine had been getting very introspective in the last chapter and I wasn't sure if I was letting her get away from the plot.

But with time away, I've realised I'm just at that point where she is changing from who she was at the start of the story, to whom she will become by the end.

And the next part of the story is going to be hard work as both my protagonists are in that changing process. Sarah is the one with the problems now, while Hugh's initial source of conflict has been resolved. But of course, he isn't go to have the rest of the story to relax in- he will still have issues to resolve... :-)

Now I'm feeling comfortable with my writing process, I'm going to try adding in some other writing.

Last year, I did say I was going to enter more of the competitions run by the writers' club I go to- and as Chairman, I really should be leading by example...

So, I have deadlines for handing entries in by the first few days of July- these are annual competitions.

One is a new non-fiction competition for members; we need to write a piece on what kind of future for the printed book- I already have a few ideas for that one.

I also want to try the story suitable for radio. There was a useful short column in Writing Magazine recently which will be very helpful. And I'll be checking out the BBC's Writers Room pages.

I do have a deadline for a short story competition in early June, so I better get my ideas jotted down...

And in a couple of months I'll be performing a piece of flash fiction (already written) at the second 'Fringe at The Ship' event, on the last Saturday of the Lowdham Book Festival. (The festival runs throughout June.)

So the next few months will be busy.

Tuesday 3 July 2012

Catching Up and Thanks...

Okay, I admit it, I left my weekend post up a bit longer than usual so I could bask in the glory of my first public reading of my work.

I don't get many opportunities like this, so forgive me for enjoying it just this once. :-)

Actually I think adrenaline was as much responsible for getting me through the event, as was the advice from fellow writers.

But one person I really do want to thank, for all she taught me about reading aloud, putting expression into my voice and standing in front of a crowd and performing, is/was my English teacher, Mrs Brant, from my days in Hillview Secondary School for Girls in Tonbridge- in the 1970's.

She not only ran the after school drama club, but was the writer of the annual school productions that Year 10 and 11 pupils took part in. Mrs Brant and other staff members and pupils made the costumes, did the music, stage backdrops and make-up.

It gave me so much confidence that is still with me today.

As one of the taller girls in my year, and with short hair, I always got the part of a male- one year I played Sir Thomas Boleyn (father of the future Queen Anne Boleyn), and the next year, Mr Brocklehurst in Jane Eyre- the clothes really do help to get into the mindset of a Victorian man, that and the long side whiskers...

Somewhere, lurking among the numerous photos I have, is a picture of me in my Sir Thomas costume. We did a fashion parade for the whole school (the day after the play's final public performance) and photos were taken of us in character.

If I find it, I'll see if I can scan it into my computer...

So thank you Mrs Brant- wherever you are now.