Sunday, 20 December 2015

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Blog Posts will return in the new year

Sunday, 13 December 2015

Writing Over Christmas

So Christmas is coming up and if your diary is anything like mine, you are going to struggle to fine time to write. Hence writing this post at 10.30pm! Not only will your diary become full, there will be all those lovely distractions on the TV. This is the time where you will need to examine your goals and expectations as well as your priorities.

First think about the word targets that you are setting that you are setting. It maybe be worth lowering these targets, so they are more manageable. Not only that, but you will find you get a buzz once you have hit that target and it will keep you writing rather than discouraging you that you didn’t meet the target and stopping you from writing.

Second, make sure that friends and family know that writing is important. They are less likely to interrupt you if they know how important it is to you.

Third, make time for your friends and family. It’s Christmas they will want to spend time with you. So as much as you may want to, you can’t really lock yourself away for the whole holiday.

Fourth, think about whether you really do need to watch that TV show or film right at that moment. It might be better to put it on the planner and save it for after you have written your words.

Finally, don’t feel bad if you miss a day writing when you’re busy as long as you don’t let a day off or two drag into weeks and months, then its fine to have a break.

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Fantasy Faction Convention - Volunteers Needed

Cross posted from our facebook page -

Original Post by Marc Aplin of Fantasy Faction

Hey everyone,

Following three successful 'Grim Gathering' events, Fantasy-Faction will be holding their first convention in 2017 (2016 was very tempting, but we... know how much work it will be and want to get it right!).

We are currently looking for people who can help us put this convention together and make it one of the best the UK has every seen. We will be inviting some of the biggest names in genre fiction and hoping to attract fans from every walk of life - our aim is to be big enough to be worth authors attending, but small enough that each fan gets time to chat with their favourite authors and hang out with fans without feeling too claustrophobic. So kind of like the Grim Gathering, but on a bigger scale!

There will be a ton of jobs and they won't all be fun! To name just a few of them:
  • Researching and finding a venue.
  • Deciding upon the perfect date.
  • Arranging authors to attend.
  • Fulfilling requirements of authors/publishers.
  • Coming up with promotion ideas.
  • Ensuring we are covered legally (insurance, etc).
  • Issuing memberships.
  • Coming up with panel ideas.
  • Inventing entertaining and worthwhile workshops.
  • Organising, arranging and deciding upon required equipment.
  • Liaising with dealers to ensure plenty of stuff for guests to buy.
  • Coordinating Volunteers.
  • Designing our first awards ceremony.
  • Managing incomings and outgoings.
  • Designing / writing copy for an event website.

If you genuinely think that you have time in 2016 to help with this then please do let me know - it would be a pleasure to have you join us. It'll all be voluntary, but I do think that when it eventually comes together it will be well worth the time you invest. Thank you so much for reading.

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Characters – What do you when surprise you half way through a story?

For the third time this week, a character in my young adult series has surprised me and changed how they need to be written. Which has left me to ask the question are we really the ones that are writing our characters or do they become real identities and just tell us what to put down on the page. Personally, I think it is the later. I think characters should live their own lives and not just do things because the plot needs them to, however it is very useful if they do marry up.

Now if this change in your character is something that character has built to and just affects the plot from now on, well that’s reality easy. I mean, you will have to write the rest of the book slightly different (or very differently – depending on the size of the surprise that your character has come up with), but that’s all unwritten words. Sometimes, actually more often than not, the changes that come up effect what you have written in the previous chapters. If you are in chapter two, that is not so bad, but for my latest character change, I’m around 70% into book four and yes it does affect the previous chapters.

So what do you do it that situation? So do you say forget, I’m too far into the story to change things now? As tempting as it may seem that is not a real possibility. Until the book is out there, you can always changes bits especially if it backs a story better. Luckily in my case, I have been holding onto the previous books so I can drop in clues to the later books in the earlier ones as well as release them reasonably close together. So now I’m left with two choices (a) to go back and rewrite scenes or (b) to continue as if I have as if I had made the changes and go back and make them once I have finished the book. For me the option is b, I really do think that finishing a book is what is important and you can always changes things in edits.

I guess that is the point to this post. Anything can be changed in edits, so if a character comes up with up with surprises then you should go with them especially if those characters improve your character and make your story better. And the other point of the post that a character still surprising you is a good thing as they are becoming real people and not just puppets to move into place because the plot wants that.

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

One Million Words Target – 144688 Words So Far

So as a Writers, we decided to set ourselves the target of getting to a million words within a year (or as fast as we can get there.) We started recording our individual word count on the 1st November to coincide with the start of Nanowrimo.

So without any further ado, our total word count as a group for November was 144688 words.

That was made up of word counts from Chris of 21917, David of 3554, Jo of 2378, Kathryn of 39070, Matthew of 72529 and Steve P of 5240.

Obviously as this is month one of the challenge, there are no other totals to add to that word count. Therefore the cumulative total stands at 144688 words and we have just the 855312 more to write.