The Devil Told Me His Name… – Prompted Piece

This is a short piece prompted by this- http://www.pinterest.com/pin/407646203744511844/

It’s part of my 500 words a day target, though it comes in around 250. (It’s, once again, a mostly unedited piece, so forgive any mistakes! Been just trying to write lately without worrying about anything else).

Hope you enjoy it 😀

‘The Devil Told Me His Name…’

Thirty-six days it had taken to catch this guy. Thirty-six days of seemingly unending terror and blood. Now they had him in the interview room, he looked less monster-of-nightmare and more gangly-rebellious-teenager.

But his youthful appearance couldn’t make them all forget what he’d done. The memories of those murders would live on in history for far longer than anyone would like.

Sergeant Kilyer stepped into the pool of false light hanging from the ceiling, bright white hitting his eyes and making him squint, but he didn’t dare close his eyes. A draft of cold seemed to waft from the hunched figure handcuffed to the chair behind the table and Kilyer barely suppressed a shudder.

There was only one question that blurted from Kilyer’s lips before he could stop himself, his face contorted into horrified confusion. “Why?”

There was a heavy moment of silence, as though sound and air had been snatched from the room by the shadows that clawed at them from the corners.

“The Devil told me his name,” the boy whispered, his head bent and his arms crooked behind the back of the chair where the handcuffs held him in place.

The sergeant frowned at him, his lips thinning into a tight line.

The boy raised his head, his long, dark hair falling in straggles over his eyes and a smile cracking on his face like that of a mask. “The Devil told me his name,” he repeated, “and it was the same as my own.”

How is everyone doing on their writing? 🙂

Blind Desire

This is a random piece I wrote based on this prompt- http://www.pinterest.com/pin/385268943097186761/.

It was only going to be a scene description and it turned into something more 😀 My writing exercises tend to have a habit of doing that! Anyway, this is an unedited piece of writing done for fun! Hope you enjoy.

Blind Desire.

A dirt trodden aisle ran between the centre of the stalls, the owners peddling their wares of bright woollen sweaters. Other smaller goods cascaded down on ropes from the cloth roofs covering the stalls, swaying in the breeze that the grey clouds above brought with them.

But there was only one thing Cassie was searching for in the mess of tables and crowds, her gaze flicking from side to side in the hope of catching a glimpse of what she’d come to collect. It was close.

She could feel it.

Her heart hammered in her chest as she took a step forwards and she froze. Whipping around to her left, she elbowed a browser out of the way, the woman sneering but eventually shuffled away muttering curses under her breath.

How long had she been searching for it, Cassie couldn’t remember. And now it was right before her it felt like a dream, her body shivered and she clenched her hands into fists to stop the shaking. A light drizzle of rain laced across her skin and dampened her hair, but she didn’t feel it; staring at the object before her had already made her numb.

“You interested?” the stall owner asked, obviously sensing a potential sale, and he shifted his bulk closer, his moustache twitching above his thin lips.

Cassie didn’t glance up. “Very.”

“Well, I’m sure we can work out a reasonable price…” He spread his hands out before him.

Now she flicked her eyes up to meet his, a long smile breaking her stern expression. “No, you don’t understand,” she said, the smile making the man fidget, “I’m not interested in purchasing it.”

The man stuttered to respond, but his lips snapped shut before he got the chance. Cassie waved her hand in an arc before his face and his eyes, once a dull hazel, turned white. Whilst the stall owner rubbed blindly at his eyes, Cassie slid the item off the corner of the wooden table, it dropping silently into her jacket pocket. She patted at the weight of it now concealed in her coat and turned to walk away, the man’s panic now bursting forth in a wail of fear.

As the crowd rushed towards the table, Cassie weaved between them and out into the open, disappearing into the fingers of fog that began to grip at the market.

Bit random I know, but still, every bit of writing is practice, right? 😀

How’s everyone doing on their writing? How are those in NaNo progressing?

Have a great weekend everyone! 🙂

October 2014 Round-Up and November 2014 Plan

October was certainly an interesting month. I spent most of it trying to figure out my new schedule of less social media and more writing.

I did OK to start with, but then I found my hours creeping up again on social media. I am certainly going to have to be stricter with myself.

October:

– Didn’t exactly keep to schedule. Got most things done on time, but not others.
– Started my new Books on my Bookshelf series.
– Got my first reviews for The Magic Spark.
– Didn’t meet my reading target. Though I was only off by about half a book 😀 Forbidden Quest by Alaina Stanford, Reunion of the Heart by Elaine Jeremiah, and Hands of Evil by Melissa Barker-Simpson.
– Attempted to cut my social media right down and concentrate on the writing. Started well, but hasn’t been so successful towards the end of the month.
– I did some marketing using photosets, but still not enough.
– Managed to connect with bloggers regularly, and share their posts and news on Twitter and FB more consistently.
– I didn’t manage to sort out my Pinterest boards.

November:

It’s all change for November yet again to what I intended last time.

Unfortunately, there will be no Christmas novella. As much as I want to write it, I am just not in a place to do so at the moment. There is a lot of upheaval at home and things moving around, which will eventually result in a writing space of my own. But until then, I don’t really have anywhere that I can go to focus on writing.

I am one of those writers who needs quiet and peace to write 😀 And I just can’t get that at the moment, and my writing is suffering for it. I don’t want to put out a book that is less than my best, so I’ve decided to wait (though I will probably do the Christmas novella for next year because the characters and plots are just too awesome to forget!).

Instead this months goal is: To write 500 words a day.

Doesn’t matter what it is- short fiction, long fiction, fanfiction, poetry, as long as it’s something. I may not have the space to concentrate on a full book, but that doesn’t mean I have to stop writing altogether, I love it too much to do that 😀

November will be about writing practice, which is just as important as anything else! But it will also give me more time to help at home and eventually get this writing space up together, which I am VERY excited about 🙂

As for reading this month, I plan to read three books: The Masked Empire by Patrick Weekes, Asunder by David Gaider (re-read that one, as I’ve read it before!), and Not Wonder More – Mad Maggie and the Mystery of the Ancients by Rod Raglin (for review group). Those are the only ones that I will definitely be reading, and any extra will be a bonus 😀

That means no reviews except my review group one this month, and none in December either. My normal reading and reviews will resume in January 2015 (a scary thought to think that’s not so far away!).

So, there you have it. This post was a lot longer than intended, sorry!

**TL;DR – No Christmas novella due to a lot of stuff going on. Tons of writing practice instead this month! Back to book writing in the New Year.**

Other things that happened around the writing/blogging community this month:

Callum McLaughlin released his new book, False Awakening!

Topaz Winters has a beautiful new look to her site.

EclecticAlli has been hosting a brilliant set of posts for her Masquerade Ball Blog Party.

Natacha Guyot announced an exciting new project she’s working on!

Island of Glass by Ruth Nestvold is at a lowered price until Mid-November!

My Creative Flows blog had a great post on tips for those participating in NaNo and how to get through it! 😀

Oh, also, to all those actually participating in NaNoWriMo this month- Good Luck! 😀

How did your October go? Do you have many plans for November?

It’s Worth The Struggle…

I have a couple of links this week that really inspired me.

I think all writers, especially new ones, go through that down time of not progressing fast enough or not being where they want to be. It’s inevitable and can sometimes stop a person writing, but these posts really gave me a boost in confidence and motivation; to remember my dream and, even though it’s hard, it’s worth all the struggle to fight for!

They reminded me to write for the love of it, to work towards where I want to be, and not focus on the negative!

http://www.yourwriterplatform.com/build-your-writing-career/#more-4734

http://callummclaughlin.wordpress.com/2014/10/25/never-give-up/

Hope you enjoy them too!

Have a great Sunday everyone 🙂

Do you have any advice or tips? Have you ever felt a bit negative about where your headed in your writing? How did you deal with it?

Romance Weekly with a Spooky Twist #lovewritechat

RW Banner

If you’ve just joined from the brilliant Sarah Hegger, author of Sweet Bea, then welcome!

This week’s hop has taken a bit of a spooky turn with Halloween fast approaching!

We were challenged to tell a scary story in 300 words or less.

Horror is not my forte, but it was a great challenge to try out a new genre 😀 I hope you enjoy it!

Photo by Twisted Pixel on Flicker (Click photo for Photostream).

Photo by Twisted Pixel on Flicker (Click photo for Photostream).

Alone in the middle of the stark forest, Susie stared out between the bones of the trees, the bare trunks grey from the cold.
Her abandoned and very dead car sat a few paces away, the fading sunlight gleaming on its red bonnet.
“Now what?” she muttered, her phone beeping the fact it had no signal.

A heavy breath plumed to an icy fog before her and Susie shuddered.

The breath had not been hers.

So there we go, a (mildly) spooky story to get everyone in the Halloween mood! Now go see what scary treats Xio Axelrod has in store next 😀

Have you written any spooky tales? Do you enjoy Halloween stories?

Progress Report:

Status of sixth manuscript: Writing first draft and soon to go on hold.
Total word count so far: 38,306.
(Plus 1,416 on my Christmas novella that I couldn’t stop myself from starting 😀 )

Books read: 3/4.

End of October Indie Review: Writing.

It’s time!

I find myself at a point in my book that is both thrilling and slightly nerve-wracking.

As I’ve said, I’ve had this series in my mind for a while, and there is one scene particularly that has always been certain and always the same.

I have come to the point in my book to write that scene; a scene that has been in my head for a couple of years.

It’s a pretty intense scene, emotionally and physically.

Yes, this is just the first draft, and yes, I can sort it out later if it’s not perfect. But for some reason I have this feeling that I have to get it right first time, because it’s the pivotal scene in this first book of the series.

I mean, thinking on it for two years I should be able to knock it out in no time, but when I came to write all I did was just stared at the screen!

But it’s time to just do it, and today is the day!

I am going to write it, it’s going to be awesome, and this scene can finally leave my head and hit the page!

Have you guys ever had a scene you’re hesitant about writing? Have you ever come to write a scene you’ve been thinking of for some time? How do you approach writing such intense scenes?

Have a great weekend everyone!

Switch Up!

I just want to say a BIG thank you to all the lovely encouraging and supportive comments on my last post (I may not have replied to all, but I read them all and was so touched!). It was so nice to hear from other writers who feel the same. This community really is so incredibly supportive! 🙂

Today is the first day of just giving myself over to writing, I am doing this blog post on my lunch break! 😀 It has been nice though, it was lovely to start writing this morning and have no pressure to finish at a certain time so as I could begin social media, I actually think the quality of my writing improved for it!

Anyway, I had a nice plan of action in place for the book I’m working on at the moment.

It was my usual plan- Write the first draft, edit the next month, and then release. So release day would have been the end of November.

But, this book is different then normal as it’s the first book in a series; a series I have been thinking about writing for a good 2 years now.

As I began writing my first draft I knew I was going to need more time with it. More time with these characters I’ve been cultivating for years and more time to delve into the start of this series I’ve loved planning for so long!

So, I’ve had a change of plan. My plan now is to work on the first draft (still finish by the end of this month!) and then give myself two months for editing.

In November I am going to work on a short Christmas novella to release in December, then January and February I am giving over completely to re-writing and doing drafts of the current first book in my series.

I hope that makes sense 😀

I do have to say, this is part of the reason I love self-publishing. I have no set time or specific book I need to work on. If I want or need to change up the order I release books or write books, I can! That is really a huge plus for writing and publishing books on my own!

Have you guys ever changed your writing plans? Have you started one book and then begun another at the same time?

Progress Report:

Status of first manuscript: Writing first draft.
Word count: 2232 (Total word count: 28,368).

Books read: 2/4.

End of October Indie Review: Reading.

Being a Writer= 10% writing and 90% everything else!

When I started this blog my main goal was to be honest, I wanted to record this journey and be truthful about how it was going and how I felt about it. This is one of those posts 😀

So, over the past few days I’ve been in a bit of a weird head space!

I love writing and I’m very lucky to be able to dedicate all of my time to it as my full time career.

But when I thought about it, I’m not dedicating my full time to it. I write for around 1.5-2 hours a day, five days a week and though that’s a lot more than most people get the chance to do, it’s still not enough for me.

Most of my workday is spent doing social media.

Now, I’ve gone on about my inability to make proper use of social media before 😀 I’m also not good at using it for marketing, etc.

I’d say I’ve not done bad in book sales, more than some indie authors, but I also have to say that not seeing a rise in sales throughout the year but just a steady stream, kind of put me in a bit of a funk.

Why was I spending so much time on creating my author platform etc, if it isn’t going to help with sales?

Now, my writing isn’t all about they money 😀 But I do want to make a living off of it and though I understand I am a new author, it can be incredibly disheartening to see indie authors put out one book and they get to number 1 without seeming to do much at all, and my books float in the sea with the rest.

It just got me thinking about if I am using my time wisely. If my hours on social media aren’t gaining me sales or getting my name out any further, should I be spending so long on it?

As you probably have heard me say many times before, I really don’t like marketing! Those who do it well are successful, but I don’t do it well, I barely do it at all. The thought of shoving my work in people’s faces constantly really drains me and social media is a part of that. Trying to get my name out there and my work recognised is emotionally exhausting because I’m just not that type of person.

Now that I have established myself with a blog and things, is it time to allow myself to take a step back and wait for my books to speak for me?

What I’m trying to say is, I miss writing.

I could write all day if I could 😀 And that’s exactly what I’m going to do for a while.

I have made the decision that for the rest of the month, I am going to take a bit of a back seat on the social media thing. I’ll have a few blog posts, but not too many I don’t expect. I will still read others blogs, because I always enjoy your guys posts and find some great tips and information! But I probably won’t comment as much as I normally do.

I think not commenting as much on others blogs is part of my hesitance to cut back on blogging and social media. I have made a great many blogging friends and am so incredibly grateful for their support, I like to show mine by commenting and sharing their posts.

The social media side of things is important, I know, it’s the only way to get my name out there, but I really need to just write for a while, to give my everything to the craft I love so much.

So, if I’m not commenting as much as usual, please don’t think I’m not reading, because I will be! I hope you guys understand 🙂

Have a brilliant weekend everyone, I hope it’s a good one!

The First Draft- It’s a love/hate thing.

One of my major flaws as a writer (and as a person) is my need to get everything perfect first time around.

You see how this could be a problem when it comes to writing? 😀 Considering the amount of drafts we have to do before we get something we’re pleased enough with to publish?

Writing a first draft can, at times, hurt me.

Staring at this horrible screen of text that isn’t perfect, that isn’t lovely, that sometimes doesn’t even make sense; it doesn’t do me any good!

But I have gotten better over this year since writing has become career. The first draft has to be written, no matter how I do it, it is the foundation of my book. If I don’t write, then I’m not doing my job! 😀

The way I like to look at a first draft is that it is the skeleton. It is the bones of my manuscript.

The second draft is the muscles.

The third is the skin.

And from then on extra drafts and changes are the clothing, jewelry, and make up that allow my manuscript to sparkle.

Still, it’s hard. Nowadays I write my first draft without looking back at it. I just write it and keep on going. I use simple, not very active words, such as ‘pushed’, ‘pulled’ ‘looked’, etc, I even have sections where I’ve written, ‘She’s angry- describe’. I just write whatever to get that first draft down, with notes to remind me when I go back to edit.

I can then go back and change those words, make it active. make it flow. I can change the details, add description where I have left it out, etc.

But it is a struggle! When I think my writing is terrible, it puts a damper on my mood (which my poor family and friends have to deal with, sorry to them!), and I go into a fit of, ‘I suck as a writer!’ 😀

But by the end, when all the layers are added, I come out of that mood having produced something I can be really proud of. A story that has been worth all the moods and hard work 🙂

What I’m trying to say is- Just write it. Don’t worry about language, or word use, or adverbs, or anything like that in a first draft. Just do whatever it takes to get that main bulk down.

It’s after the first draft that the real work begins 😉

Progress Report:

Status of sixth manuscript: Writing first draft.
Word count: 2793 (Total word count: 23,503).

Books read: 2/4.

Mid-October Book Review: We won’t talk about the lack of that…

Posts to Check Out!

Here some of the posts that caught my eye this week!

http://arranbhansal.com/2014/10/06/arran-is-going-to-the-houses-of-parliament/ – Arran has been asked to the Houses of Parliament! So major congrats to him 🙂

http://juliestock.wordpress.com/2014/10/06/a-few-proofreading-tips-to-improve-your-manuscript/ – Some great tips on proof-reading your manuscript!

http://chrismcmullen.wordpress.com/2014/10/07/a-storytelling-secret/ – A cool and important lesson from Chris!

http://mystiparker.com/2014/10/06/support-an-author-support-a-business/ – I could write a whole essay in response this brilliant post. Indie authors and their businesses need support!

http://dkcreaderscorner.wordpress.com/2014/10/06/being-an-indie-author/ – Another amazing post about being an indie author and the awesomeness of the writing community.

http://lmarie7b.wordpress.com/2014/10/08/like-a-movie/ – A great post about fight scenes and cause and effect.

http://thecollegenovelista.com/2014/10/07/how-to-increase-your-writing-speed/ – Increasing your writing speed and sites to help you do that.

http://redclayandroses1.wordpress.com/2014/10/07/is-this-mass-suicide/ – A very good topic about sales and free eBooks, something all indie readers need to think of.

http://islandeditions.wordpress.com/2014/10/08/on-second-drafts/ – Brilliant advice on second drafts, this quote, ‘Write Fast, Edit Slow(ly)’ especially caught my attention!

http://chaptertk.com/2014/10/09/why-even-bother-to-read/ – A good question posed in this post!

Hope you have a great Sunday everyone! 🙂