Really, no excuse.

I know.  It’s got to the point where I’m not really continuing to blog, but starting a new one; don’t you think so?

At the moment I feel like I want to keep my work close to my chest and I’m not sure why. Maybe that’s why when I think about blogging I say meh…

So this is a super short post to apologise and to say I’m not sure when I’ll be back…perhaps when my new projects have solidified in my head.

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In it for the money…

I’ve been caught up in the Big Wednesday madness that has taken over the country in the past few weeks.

Last week it was up to $26 (ish) million and I could barely think what I’d spend it on, and this week it’s already up to $35M.

I know the odds of winning are astronomical (1 in 16M) but I think just the fantasy that I might win has been worth a ticket price. Which is hard for me to say because I have called it “stupid tax” for years. My sister told me to think of it as a donation to the arts instead. I think I’ll take that further and say it’s an investment in my career because somewhere down the line I’ll be applying for funding for something. Yup, that’s right I’m not wasting my money; not at all…

Lottery madness inevitably leads to conversations about what you’d do if you win. Would you give up work? Who would you tell?

I had this conversation a few weeks ago with a friend (Hey M!) when the jackpot was some piddling number, say $15M or so. It went something like this:

W – I don’t know if I’d keep writing.

M- Of course you would.

W – I don’t know if I’d be as driven; I want to succeed as a writer  so I get money…

M – What money?!

And then we laughed and drank more beer.

But there was a little bit of truth in it. Part of me does hope that one day this writing lark will pay off. And not in an artistically satisfied way. I mean a pay-off-my-student-loan-and-buy-a-house kind of way. So I guess I live in a monetary fantasy world whether or not I buy Lotto…

My Lotto madness has paid off – in the artistically satisfied sense of course. Last week I wrote a screenplay based on my novel. I wanted to set up that one character dreams of owning her own place and taking care of her nearest and dearest. She had a Lotto conversation with the other character (Mae) and said if she won lotto Mae could retire… which meant I could set up how important work is for Mae and the idea that she might need an apprentice.

I wonder if I have to thank the Lotteries Commission for that?

I suppose I should apologise for my slackness in writing posts. I’m hoping that it’s becoming a charming aspect of my personality but I suspect it is not.

I have been busy with screenplays, rewriting a short story for the Katherine Mansfield award and will be launching into a rewrite of Kiwiana Charlatan that I hope to get done in the next couple of weeks.

Then back into the novel for (fingers crossed) my last hurrah.

Funny. Deep down I think of myself as a deeply lazy person (I dream of sleep ins and naps. If I ever become a full time writer I’m doing it Spike Milligan style in jammies and a big bed) but my workload would refute that.

Must dash – deadlines loom.

I’ll be back…sometime.

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My Eyes are Dim…

My horoscope said to expect miracles today, but unfortunately it seems winning Big Wednesday wasn’t the miracle I was waiting for.

But today has been quite miraculous, miraculous indeed!

Today I had a reading of Kiwiana Charlatan. It was organised by Playmarket so I had a director and actors. It was great to hear it read again (I’ve had a quick and dirty reading at my writers group) and to hear feedback from people who haven’t been there since I said “I have this idea…”

Not that feedback from people who have been there from the start isn’t valuable; it’s just that, after a while you can’t see the plot holes for the trees anymore.

This was something I tripped over on the last stretch of my novel rewrite last week (was it only last week? It seems so long ago…)

I had it all sorted, a few more things to tie up before I could send it to Phil so he could have a copy before he left the country. And then some new notes from a new reader came and I, well, sort of over reacted. I think it was just exhaustion and the thought of the finish line being out of reach again. Anyway once I had calmed down and started to breathe normally again, I realised that I had already addressed some of the comments and one of them was really important.

I had started the novel in a dream/fantasy sequence which we (that’s me and Phil) had known that because we know January. But new readers don’t. Kind of a problem at the beginning of the book huh?

In the end it just took a little rejigging (hey, Chapter 1 and 2 could be swapped…) and I got my draft in on time.

I think I started this story in order to say that fresh eyes are good.

OK. My Brain appears to have officially knocked off for the day. An early night for a tired writer methinks…

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Dress ups

This morning I wrote the description of my main character January that I have somehow missed in all my other drafts.

Well, to be more accurate I described what she is wearing. But I think clothes do provide a key to a person’s personality. For instance, it is easy to argue that someone dressed head to toe in the latest fashion even if it doesn’t suit them is easily led.

Yesterday I bought a couple of fashion magazines and I used them to put togther January’s look(along with ones that were kicking around home). It starts off very black, scratch that, exclusively black in the beginning and then by the end I was reaching for more colourful/playful clothes. I think this would be an interesting dimension to have in the book but I am deathly afraid of slipping into chick lit (if I haven’t already…)

One unexpected side effect of this morning’s writing is that I had a case of “I have nothing to wear”itis, because nothing was a good as the outfit I had described. I still have the urge to go to the material store and buy some lovely black wool to make a little dress…but I have a novel to write, not a wardrobe to sew.

Still, the clothes would be easier to describe if I could touch them…

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Blogger was a rollin’ stone…

Neglectful.

Blog abandoned for weeks…months?

I’m a bad, bad blogger I know. I’ve never really kept diaries (unfortunately. Some record of my actual teen angst would be handy for some projects. I only have a few notebooks with terrible poems or my drama diary for 6th form drama which was heavily self censored and I guess, self centered!) so why should a blog be any different?

But I have been writing again – some rewrites of the novel before we begin editing in earnest (although I guess this is editing).

The climax is in the bag (everything I write/say at the moment seems like innuendo. I apologise!) and today I’m working on the end and thinking about the beginning. I need to describe January and the season.

This morning there was a storm in Wellington. Thunder, lightning and hail. I heard the kids next door maybe an hour later say “It’s snowing!” but by the time I looked out the window it had all melted away. I probably should have gotten up earlier to begin writing, but it was “snowing” and my bed was lovely and warm. Besides I’m still suffering the effects of becoming addicted to playing Pokemon on my new DS Lite.

Ah distractions. There are so many! Work, sewing, knitting, cleaning…(that one doesn’t come up very often I must say!)

I was in the library not so long ago, loitering around the how to write/style guides section. It was very tempting to check out a “How to write a great novel” book when realised that I didn’t need to read about it. I just need to do it.

So this is a round about apology for not posting for ever – it’s just that it has fallen in the distraction category for a while.

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Limbo

I’ve just counted the days since I finished the draft of my novel and although it has only been 48 days it feels like 48 years; and then, strangely, hours.

It has been a little strange. The habit of writing every morning seems to have stuck and so when I haven’t I’ve felt a bit angsty. Which spills into every facet of life.

And it is not as though I haven’t done anything – I have been pottering with my drabble, but that really just felt like killing time.

Until a proper project came along…

So I printed out my novel to re-read (too soon?) and I’ll be looking at Kiwiana Charlatan…

…but what I really want to do is to write something fun. Something silly. Something where I don’t have to delve too deeply into my past/emotions.

Not that I’ve reached that level with my drabble. At the moment it is all frustratingly superficial.

The year is slipping away…

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Toil and Drabble

I’m feeling pretty good this morning – I’ve knocked off a couple of drabble this morning.

Granted, they are only 100 words long (short?) so it doesn’t seem that impressive but getting the right 100 words is rather difficult. Honest.

This morning as I was writing and thinking how I would structure the uber-drabble one word kept popping into my head.

Zine.

Although It would be a rather boring zine sans pictures so I think I’ll have to stew on it a bit longer.

I bought an exercise book yesterday to serve as this project’s notebook.  I  still have my normal notebook that I carry around to catch wayward houghts and musings – but for awhile now I’ve been creating almost scrapbook for each project.  The scrapbooks still have thoughts and musings (of course) but I also fill them with photos, pictures from magazines, images that invoke ideas, research.

This is the first time that I have chosen a scrapbook because it fit with the theme of my project – the exercise book makes me think of my school days (I just need to graffitti the cver a bit and write random “conversations” in the margins like – “I think Mr Jackson has hidden his stash in the heater” “I know it fully smells like it.”) If I do go down the zine route the exercise book will feature.

I wonder how much influence my notebook will exert on my piece, and if my past notebook have influenced what I have written without me realising it.

I prefer sketchbooks – unlined freedom! But have also used lined books that were gifted to me. I’ve noticed physical changes in my writing (small book, small handwriting; lined pages handwriting stretched or compressed to fill the spaces) but not changes in style. But then I haven’t looked.

The clothes make the writing?

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