Monday, 25 February 2008

The Week Off

There is very much to be said in this whole 'having time off from work' thing.

Today, I managed to have a whole 5 hours writing done, making a significant dent in reading through Act One, wandered into town and had a look around, bought Stardust on DVD (which also ticks the box 'remember what it was to love') and booked an appointment at the dentist.

I know what you're thinking. 'Wow, Grey, stop before you give yourself a heartattack!' Well, I enjoyed it, so get stuffed!

The read through's going well, Now have 12 chapters behind me that I'm pretty damned pleased with and I think is actually in a state to be sent off to an agent.

I won't, of course, want to have the whole thing finished before I send it but it has given me a sense of accomplishment, which makes a nice change. There's still a long way to go yet but I am, at least, going.

Two of my friends have sent me info on short story competitions, which was very kind of them, always nice to be thought of. It's just a pity I don't have any stories within the word limits at the moment.

Interzone rejected a story. They're either very efficient or didn't read the story at all. They didn't even bother to write the full title of the story at the top of the formal, standard slip. Most vexing. I'll have to look into finding a new home for Of the Father, I for one think its quite good.

On the other hand I'm still waiting on hearing back from Weird Tales. In two days they'll have had it for a month and in my experience they are good with rejecting stuff after long enough to make you think they read it but promptly enough so you don't chase them. If they don't reply soon I might start getting excited and start hoping that they're liking it and giving it some hard thought towards publication. Murky Depths liked it, maybe Weird Tales like it better (please, please, please).

Anyhoo, back to enjoying my week off. I wonder if all this writing and no actual work is what it feels like to be a real writer. I'm guessing not but it's fun to pretend.

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, 16 February 2008

A Lonely Business

The redraft of part one is printing as I type, so that means I'm a third of the way through the book. I decided that now is a good time to go back and edit so for the next few weeks I'm going to be reading through the print out and trying to make the whole piece as good as good can be before moving on to Part 2.

Things have been moving so slowly recently to be bordering on depressing. My head's full of doubts is this any good, is it too long, am I wasting my time? All that jazz. I tried reading some online writer's advice pages to see if I could find anything that would cheer me up, convince me that all these hours I could be out having fun at the pub / generally bumming around isn't actually a complete loss. If anything they depressed me more; talk of how some agents don't even read the manuscripts they're sent, how unlikely it is to get picked up by an agent at all, they get hundreds of manuscripts a week. It does make me want to scream. It's like being one person in a vast herd, all of us screaming 'I'm different!' to the agents up on their balcony, just another face in the crowd.

But I suppose I've just got to have faith in myself. I'll never know unless I try, eh? Plus, I've worked a slush pile before and a good 90% of the stuff was quite rubbish, sloppy and only half finished. People who have written the first draft and been so excited at finishing they've sent it off already. So, I'm convinced that sitting here taking my time over it is going to pay off.

Well, I'm not convinced really. There's still the chance this is a pants novel and no one will like it and I really aren't that great. But I think that about all my work and those nice people from Murky Depths seemed to like it.

Argh, tis a lonely business this writing malarkey.

Thanks for reading.

Sunday, 10 February 2008

Back in Black Font

I'm back.

My computer died quite unexpectedly last week. It just gave up and stopped working. I spent some time fearing for my files managed to have someone get them off the hard drive and was told the computer was beyond redemption. So now I have this rather spiffing new laptop that I hope will serve me well in the writing years to come.

Writing, as ever, is ongoing. I lost perspective last night on editing. I was only seeing the words in front of me and not what was had happened before and what was going to happen next. Luckily this seems to have happened just at the time when I'm coming to the end of redrafting the last few scenes of Act 1. So, I'm going to spend the next few days just re-reading the entire act to see how it holds up. I've read five chapters so far and it seems to be holding up quite well. Worried it might be a little dense but maybe that's just me. Remember that feeling when you see a film for the second time and it seems shorter than the first? I think that's what's going on here.

Got a few more ideas for the next novel which is exciting and still waiting to hear back from current magazines with my stuff.

Well, it's been a long weekend. Now I need to sleep.

Peace out.