Writing Stuff: A Quarter 1 Update

typing text writing writingIt occurs to me that we are now over a quarter of the way through 2012, so it’s probably about the time that I should update you on all the writing things I’ve been doing.

Of course I have been supernaturally busy. In fact it’s a wonder I could find the time to write this post. I seem to spend most of my time on expensive yachts with other millionaire writers sipping pink champagne and counting my money. Every night is spent hobnobbing with stars and celebrities, constantly seen with the cultural elite, models and royalty…

…or not, that was all complete bollocks. I’ve been busy though and as you can probably imagine there’s a few good things, some bad things and an ugly thing. If only there was some cliché I could use for these good, bad and ugly things. Oh well, never mind, here we go.


The Good

Well I started the writing course, and I am in the middle of assignment 2, which is about researching magazines, articles and then writing one yourself, sorting out the letter and so on. I’ve got my idea, and with any luck this should all be completed by the weekend.  Then I can send it off to my tutor for it to be critiqued. I chose a magazine with a low pay per article. I figured, the less they pay the less competition I would have and the more chance it would be published.

I am starting to get fairly regular emails from a games company asking me to write news items on my blog for a variety of reasons. These so far have been about gaming releases, or milestones such as having 2 million customers. Very little work is involved, as most of the time the test is already written out in a press-release style, which is why I don’t feel too bad about producing them for free. At these early stages of my blog I will take any recognition I can get quite frankly. At the very least it’s nice to know that my blog is recognised, and in a lesser way my writing as well.

Speaking of my blog, it’s now over a year old. The new domain is well and truly worn in and everything seems nice and comfortable. I average at between 150-250 visits per day, which I don’t think is bad for a year’s work (Well, ok two years If you count the previous incarnation of the blog.) It’s hard not focussing on the number of visits. I just have to tell myself that the blog will never be big by itself, it’s the article writing or novel-writing that will bring people to my blog at least I hope it will.

Anyway, it’s nice to be able to say all of those things, but I’m afraid it’s not all good.

The Bad

My Novel. Yes, that snarling, rabid beast, dry-humping my leg. I don’t know what to do. I’m trying to edit it, but it just seems so messed up. Most of it doesn’t make sense, and what does is poorly written. I don’t think it’s a write-off (See what I did there…) but at this stage I don’t know if it’s best to struggle through and keep editing what’s there or to just cut my losses now before I waste any more time and just look at writing Mark II.

That’s the bite. As it stands now, I’m just wasting time not touching it, so I need to choose one way or the other. To be honest it’s looking like it will need a full rewrite, with a few things salvaged from Mark I.

The Downright Ugly

Work avoidance and procrastination. Oh boy, have they been my buzzwords this quarter. Looking back I could have done so much more than I did. If I could speak to myself the conversation would look like this.

‘So are you proud of what you’ve achieved, this quarter?

‘I think could have done more, but I just didn’t have the time?’

<jumps over table, and angrily slams my head into the table, sobbing hysterically>

I did have the time, I had plenty of time. I just didn’t use it wisely. I’m not going to lie to you; a fair share of that spare time went on various video games. Though that’s not the bit I’m worried about. That’s blatant, that’s obvious. That’s the type of time-wasting that storms up to you in bright yellow tutu and army boots, and slaps you. That’s the easy type to spot.

The type that’s a little more of a concern is the much more subtle, ‘I am just waiting for…’ or the ‘I’m researching/analysing’ type. Avoiding work by pretending to yourself that you’re waiting for someone else or that you’re not ready yet and need more information, they’re the dangerous ones. They sneak under the wire. What may have seemed like a perfectly valid excuse at the start turns out to be some really and obviously stupid bit of work-avoidance. Of course this type of work-avoidance is apparently completely visible and obvious to your partner, and when you realise you’ve been doing yourself you may just have to deal with a few ‘I told you so’s’ from them.

So, what am I going to do make me stop doing this? Well, I fell back on a plan that all nerds like me love and regular people fear. I made a spreadsheet.’ Mwa ha ha ha Feel the power of my column formatting.’

I won’t bore you with the details of it, but it allows me to track what I am writing about and how much. It also logs articles or short stories I send off for submission.

More writing still to come…

So, there you have it, all-in-all not a bad first quarter. There’s some good stuff happening in there. I just need to watch for those bad time-wasting habits. Hopefully, I’ll have even more for you by quarter two.

I’m always up for advice if anyone has any they wish to impart on me. If you do, head down to that lil ol’ comments sections and do your stuff.


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