Perhaps I expected to much of myself, but once again the holiday is almost over and I haven’t achieved what I had hoped. I haven’t been writing every day, but I am attempting to right that in the next few weeks.

My inner editor is a little under the weather, and Microsoft word is refusing to acknowledge it has a spell  check, dictionary and thesaurus.

I’m also waiting on my student Adobe to arrive, until then- no art, no flash and its difficult for me!

Oh dear.


…That is all.

Planting Seeds

Today everyone’s feeling a little under the weather, and I’m taking a step back and looking at everything I’ve been doing and preparing for over the last few weeks.

I sent in a proposal for Nottingham’s new annual event, the ‘Nottingham festival of Words’ which I’m waiting to hear back from. I’ve also been continuing with my book… well, I say book- it’s now turned itself into a script. I decided that it would be better this way, as the use of subtitles will make the dialogue much simpler. (The main character is mute- which is interesting to write at least!) I developed a way of doing her dialogue to include the quirks of deaf sign language, but it’s not easy to read. So, I thought, why not write it as a film? 8,000 words turned into nothing more than planning in an instant. Ho, hum. I’ve written 3 pages of the script and I do think it works better this way. I’ll probably decide that it was better as a novel when I’m another 8,000 words in!

What else have I been up to? Writing crochet patterns. I created a series of sock puppets a while ago, and the pattern is almost ready to be typed up and typeset. I need to do a photoshoot, and will rope in some ‘enthusiastic’ friends for this. My etsy shop will soon go live, and I hope it’ll generate a little pocket change from my hobbies to help me out while I’m at university.

I’m (struggling) to read a very interesting book on the theory of creative writing. It’s called ‘Writing as Creative design’ and it demystifies the whole process of imagination. It’s very comforting to think of writing and inspiration, not as something for the privileged few, but something which can be worked at, which depends on appropriate ideas meshing their way together. It makes sense, or at least, the writer is much clearer at explaining these ideas than I am.

I may have some more design tasks on the horizon- which I am very excited about- and am working with Pippa Henessy to create a submission for BRICK’s new graphic memoir collection.

Buscuits and Mouthy Poets

I think I read somewhere that Angela Carter would bake instead of facing an upcoming deadline, and although there are no publishers breathing down my neck (the lack of which needs to be rectified), nonetheless, my housemate Matt obliged and gave me his dad’s marvelous recipe for cinnamon biscuits.

They did not last long.

Status: Delicious

Yesterday I went to the ‘Mouthy Poets’ meeting. They are a talented, vibrant bunch of poets brimming with confidence. I don’t think I’d laughed so much, so hard at a writer’s meeting for a while. They had me in stitches. Lead by the wonderful Deborah Stevenson, I think they can really make a difference to the poetry scene in Nottingham, if not the world. Yes, they’re THAT good.

And what blog would be complete if not mentioning the recent Avengers film. Fear not, I won’t spoil anything, but there were some fantastic cinematic techniques used, especially in the fight scenes to make sure that each member of the group was shown off. If you haven’t seen it, do. Or wait for the DVD….if you can sit it out for so long.

I haven’t had the chance to do much original writing recently, what with anthology deadlines (which are drawing to a close), and I hope to do some more later today, but I have been sketching and polishing off with watercolour. Observe:

Look closely, what’s the surreal bit?

Hope you like it and continue to read,




When I think of something to say…

…I say it. This week I’ve actually been doing things I can talk about, rather than merely stating ‘Yup, I’ve been doing work and I’m going to bore you all with the details.’

Last week was an awful lot of work, which ended on Tuesday with my 9.30- 4.30 day school at university. It’s an odd feeling going into a lecture, knowing that you’ve prepared AND it’s going to be the easiest thing you’ve done all week. The Anthology is only a month away from completion, and I’m beginning to realize that I’m going to miss it… but not the hard work (which I’m sure I’ll find in one of the many things I end up taking part in.)

The proofs arrived on Wednesday, printed and proofread by Belmont Press after I’d sent the proofs and had a little chat over email about one or two of the pieces on Monday. Their turn-around is amazing. Any way, here’s Christian and myself opening them up:

Aaaaand the cover I designed:

For once there’s quite a lot of pictures in this post. So anyway, my job this week is checking the proofs and making corrections to the cover and 204 pages, sorting out invites and organizing the launch. Believe it or not, that’s the tip of the iceberg.

I’m also waiting for some coursework grades to be returned to me for the scriptwriting module I took. I wrote 20 pages of a graphic novel, 1,800 words of a reflective piece (as required) and also submitted the roughs drawn of the comic. After a conversation with Pippa Hennessy, I sent the script to BRICK (John Stuart Clark, an artist who gave a talk to my class. He sent me a marvelous critique of my work and I am very grateful for his advice.

What’s that? Comics? Yes, another great thing about today is that it’s free comic book day at Chimera- a geeky shop just down the road from me- so I popped down and not only did I find some awesome mini-comics to learn from, but also ‘Books of Magic’, a graphic novel written by Neil Gaiman. But I’m proofing (and am taking a break to write this blog) so I haven’t read it yet. There may be more comic-related geekery appearing on this blog. Just a heads up.

Oh, one more thing. I am taking some escapes from work. Jonathan (housemate) wanted to visit the nature reserve ‘nearby’, so we walked there the other day, and inevitably climbed some trees.

So despite being a student, writer and internet- surfer (which apparently isn’t a sport) I’m going outside and getting suitably sun-burnt. oops.

See, lots of pictures…which ironically makes a blog more interesting to read, despite the fact that you don’t ‘read’ pictures.

See you soon,


The Story So Far

Another busy day, and an important one, so I thought I’d post up here what’s been going on.

This past week has been non-stop, constant typesetting for the anthology, and this morning I submitted the proofs to Belmont press. I am awaiting proofs, then we will do a check- then! Time for the ‘real thing’ to be printed. After seeing my efforts in Quark paying off, I then went for a meeting with Shane Maxwell-Atkin, events manager at Waterstones. I always feel a little nervous when I prepare for meetings like this, ‘important’ meetings. But he’s lovely, and is making the planning of the launch a breeze. So my thanks, already given in person, is now here too.

Then to Jubilee campus to hand in my scriptwriting coursework, 20 pages of script, plus roughs, and 1800ish words of a reflective piece. That took most of my holiday. The rest was taken up by the other coursework I had to do, and general lethargy.


Naturally, now that the anthology is drawing to a close I am already looking for more projects. I need a good one for my 3rd year project. Perhaps beginning a on online magazine, publishing and selling the issues myself with all my new typesetting skills 😉

I’m enjoying being back at Nottingham, but I haven’t had a day without work since, thanks to the anthology (and wanting to do well, redoing and redoing corrections on the quark documents.) I have a lecture tomorrow, so that’ll be 9:30 until 4:30 and then, THEN i get to relax a little. Looking forward to it.

As I type I’m watching ‘A Game of Thrones’ with Josh, Jonathan and Sherry. I liked the books, I love the TV adaptations.


That’s all for now,



Two months later…

… and I’m back on the blog. I’ve returned to Nottingham for the third term of my second year- meaning I’m more that half way through my degree. Then I’ll be ‘qualified’. Then I’ll be let loose on the world! ‘Watch out world,’ that is my warning.

I’m still working on the Anthology and my coursework, but luckily those are almost over for the academic year. I’ve learnt a lot this year. Even though taking on the Anthology was probably a mistake, it has taught me many things.

That I can stay on deadline, even when ill.
Excel spreadsheets and schedules (although sometimes tedious) do work.
I can speak to ‘important’ people and get things done.
I can discipline myself and be at my desk, each morning, and work.

I’m going to try to keep this blog for personal things, and separate it from, which is for another purpose entirely. I wanted two blogs in order to split up my home life with work, which so far hasn’t happened in my head yet. I’d rather not bore you with these things, but they do need to be out there somewhere. My lectures do keep on about my ‘online presence’ as it’s no longer enough to only write to be a writer. We have to be visible to people. We have to go out and do readings. And among all that, we have to write, edit and be good at it.

And here I said I wasn’t going to talk about work? That’s the last one, I swear!

Someone must have an alarm on, because I’ve been waking up at 6am every morning for the past week. Admits self rather confused. Admits that I have not gotten up, but enjoyed a lie-in listening to the rain.

I enjoy structuring my life at university, but there is always so much to do! I’m trying to keep on top of everything, yet unsurprisingly, something always topples over. After several days of work on typesetting, I did not wake up for my doctors appointment. Not to fear, I do have enough headache medication, but I disappoint myself when I am trying to be organized.
…am also annoyed that wordpress seems to be a ‘z’ speller, correcting ‘organised’ to ‘organized’, and I’m not sure which is the correct, english spelling. (I have a sneaking suspicion that I’ve fallen into the american trap on this one.)

I hope you are enjoying the rain, where ever you are, and finding something interesting in my blogs- which I intend to ‘organise’ soon and work out what goes in which blog.

I’ve applied for a few internships for the summer- as jobs seem rather scarce at the moment, and have discovered that being able to typeset in Quark has made me a mite more useful 🙂

All shall be well in two months time *fingers crossed*


Perhaps I can calm down now. I’ve handed in my coursework for writing fiction and non-fiction, which were two huge proposals. I’m very glad they’re out of the way. I wrote the first three chapters of a fiction book about a mute child and the non-fiction proposal was for a textbook on pinhole photography- which, if I get a good grade, I will send off to the good people at Collins & Brown and await a rejection letter 🙂 It’s all good fun. If you’d like to have a read, the chapters are here:

Chapter one-

Chapter two-

Chapter three-

I’ve been in a bit of a creative rut lately, and am going for a walk around town later, which usually helps. I’ve been practicing guitar a lot more lately, and after 5 days consecutive practice, I can see some improvement- which proves it pays off.

What else is happening lately? Hmm…my housemate, Matt’s birthday came on pancake day, and I made pancakes for everyone in the house, including a soy version for myself (which weren’t too bad actually- good news for the lactose-intolerants out there.)

I’ve also been reading Anne Rice’s new book- which I can’t say I’d recommend. She’s moved from vampires, to christian literature and now onto werewolves. I did not think that it was a particularly inspired work. Nicely written, with huge appeal to the senses, but it does not explore anything new in the fantasy genre. Personally, I would have stopped typing before she ends the book, because all the werewolves sit around a table talking about religion and philosophy. All off the characters seem very aware of right and wrong, are extremely moral and are very well read in christian texts- even if they don’t believe. There are some wonderful descriptions of the house where the story is centered. The male protagonist is supposedly beautiful- a fact which Rice labors throughout the book…eugh. A good read if you really don’t want to think at all, but other than that, I’d say don’t bother, which is a shame, because I loved the vampire chronicles. It’s a piece of genre fiction which will sell well because it’s Anne Rice. Well done, you’ve become a brand, and sell on your name rather than quality of prose. Congratulations.

*ahem* Sorry about that. What else have I been doing? Of course! The anthology. Submissions are now in and chosen, the book is going to run to just over 200 pages, and now we’re moving onto editing.

I’ve also been making a few crochet gifts- pokemon to be exact. A squirtle and a gloom; for Grace and Matt respectively, I’ll get pictures and post them up soon.

I think that’s all for now,

I really need to get back into the habit of posting!