And because one is never enough…

March 31st, 2021

I like doing two projects – mainly because sometimes it is hard to focus and swapping back and forth I find can help.

So the second project is called The Helix Seeds though I am still a little unsure of the title as it may not be accurate enough. It is a novel or rather at the moment a concept that I am layering into the Punk’s Universe during on of the space expansions but I am not even sure which one 🙂

Very briefly for those who haven’t been following along/for the 3 people that actually still read this blog! The Punk Universe is a large multimedia and genre project that spans humanities deep part to its distant future. It contains ancient civilisations, upload, strange technologies, fabulous creatures, dark secrets and amazing truths. I have been working on it for literally decades and really should actually share more of it than I do.

The Helix Seeds is about a specific colonisation technic and what happens to the individuals and civilisations that result from plus of course how it all came to be. I am still trying to decide on structure and characters etc… I will in all honesty probably just start writing and see where it takes me. As of now there is no story line as such just a nebulous idea that plagues me at night when I am trying to get to sleep.

I have a feeling this is going to want to be a series but then they always do don’t they?

CampNaNo 2021

March 26th, 2021

Project: The Made Menagerie

Steampunk gothic horror graphic novel set in the Punk’s Universe about creatures that have been created in various ways – think the various “punk” and “core” genres mixed together.

Format – will be short stories and with a combination of illustration and comic book techniques as well as longer written pieces. Scripting of images will be key for the challenge harking back to the old screnzy script writing challenges of yore, with the longer prose pieces drafted as par the normal sort of NaNoWriMo novel writing challenge goes.

Challenge – script 100 pages, draft 50, 000 words, sketch and practice the images.

Status – prepping i.e. planning, researching, collecting materials, looking at layouts and styles.

Personalising The Writing

September 21st, 2020

I had a bit of a contradiction moment – get note pads with tear out sheets so there is no pressure for the writing to be coherent or chronological etc… then I thought but I want it to be obvious who’s note book is who’s – so me and the youngest have decorated the pads.

Sarah's notebook Jean's notebook Alaric's notebook Nanny's notebook as decorated by Mary Mary's notebook

I suppose we had all better start out NaNoWriMo prep!

Getting Things Rolling

September 15th, 2020

I have tried and failed to really get writing this year – mainly due to various health problems, not least of which was the covid. I have written about this on other blogs and barriers it has popped up but I feel my prose writing has probably taken the biggest hit especially the Punk’s Universe.

There are many reasons for this starting with the fact that I was just too sick to write for most of this year – I had a half hearted attempt at some CampNaNo but didn’t really get anywhere. I’ve had to adapt to my eyesight being damaged and potentially getting worse as well as lapses of fever, headaches over and above the migraines I normally have and of course a series of seizures and so on.

I am also adapting to having one (possibly 2) more autoimmune diseases which have been switched on by this damn virus and things like hospital trips with heart pain so bad I couldn’t speak.

Once the physical is taken into account there is the mental toll all of this has had on me and my family who had to watch me being carted off in an ambulance with no idea if they would ever see me again. I haven’t seen my friends or gone to writing events – in fact the last time I saw anyone socially as it were was a funeral. I have also now slightly lost track of how many friends have died and keep trying to message them and I missed a zoom funeral because I couldn’t get the computer to play ball.

Then there are carer responsibilities – once I was well enough my elderly mum came back which was just as well as my family who were looking after her have been flooded out of their home and it’s all a bit rubbish if I am honest.

Even with mask wearing my kids keep bringing colds home from school and then developing fevers and having to be re tested for the virus and isolate in the mean time so even though they are back at school they kind of aren’t and so most of this year when I have had any spare brain cells has been spent on homeschooling the kids. My partner fortunately was made redundant for part of the time – I say fortunately because the oldest was having to teach the youngest and that wasn’t fair but I wasn’t all that conscious and bills had to be paid etc… but then the job went which was stressful and stuff but worked out ok in the end. They now have a new job 🙂

And once all of that is taken into account there is the issue of what type of stories I tend to write – apocalyptic fiction, dystopian hells, disaster movie-ask horrors… all of this is a little too close to our everyday lives so though this year should have been the big launch of The Punk’s Universe I had already put the breaks on it as soon as it looked like the pandemic was going global etc… but to be honest I haven’t been able to face writing it either.

SO what to write – I keep feeling drawn back to it but also feeling incredibly edgy about the whole thing. I also feel that I have had yet another near death experience so really should get a wiggle on with this project that has now taken most of my life :/

For CampNaNo I looked at and attempted to write different things and to work on a not ultra depressing bit of the story line – I just did not have the energy if I am honest. I am seeing all this stuff about awesome things being produced historically in quarantine and now by people I actually know – people are writing and drawing and crafting and I am… well happy if I feel well enough to watch some netficks and made some food for everyone and somedays I can not manage either of those things.

I have also seen people saying it is our duty as writers to record what is going on but I just can’t and see that as pressure we just don’t need. It is ok that I haven’t been creating – this is a crisis situation and the only must of a crisis situation is survival.

Having said that I want to start being me again and it is September and traditionally that is my NaNo Prep Month – so I have begun prepping – not in my normal way and not really sure where I am going with it all or why – but I am going and that is the important part and I will as always be dragging the entire family with me – elderly mother and 9 yr old inclusive.

So basically – things have been rubbish, The Punk is on hold, I am prepping to do nano but with no pressure what so ever whilst still trying to maintain my love for this as my writing time of year. Crossing fingers that things will improve but assuming a lockdown and more hermit hiding which should at least help with the writing.

Also new glasses are awesome though my vision is still not what it was so still adapting to eyesight and computer use – so not sure how much computer writing will happen verses long hand and dictation.

Wish me luck 🙂

And hope, health, healing and happiness to everybody else <3

CampNaNo 2020 week 1 update

July 9th, 2020

The story I am working on is several ideas I’ve been having for years all kind of merged together, it is primarily being written for my youngest with their input so I suppose it is actually a combined effort.

I have so far managed the prologue and first chapter with most of the second chapters outline in place.

Of course it has done that thing of getting completely out of control on me and there are already pages of notes and concept lists. There is enough scope for a series or three trailing the main characters life and adventures. Think teen to young adult even if it is being written for and partially by the 9 yr old – I think the stories will grow up with the protagonist.

Camp NaNo 2020 – eep and ARG!!!!

July 2nd, 2020

I started June thinking I would plan my Camp NaNo – I was after all feeling a lot better and had even been out gardening but then on May the 16th I started to get little heart twinges and then my reactive arthritis came back – I have not suffered with it in yrs. On the pain killer I went and then a rash appeared and got worse and worse until there was emergency phone calls and pharmacies at 1 in the morning and then actual June arrived – as did the ambulance – those chest pains had got a lot worse all of a sudden.

Turns out that when you suffer a virus or infection like coronavirus it can muck your immune system up – get it over excited – well mine is over excited and attacking my thyroid of all things. I also have general inflammation. I had a whole suite of symptoms which I wont bore you with – all that really matters is that I now have to take medicine for about 18 months and be weary of infections getting out of hand as sometimes your immune system can completely close down on these medicines.

The medical problems I’ve had the last few yrs have not helped things and I don’t really know what’s happening with my vision and hearing – both of which have been affected. None the less I have started my Camp NaNo – it feels good to be writing again and it is all down to helping my youngest with learning at home – but more on that later – for I am having to pace myself with the writing and screen time and the creative writing is getting priority over blogging.

Stay At Home NaNo

April 9th, 2020

Back blogged from my diary

NaNoWriMo are kind of doing an extended writing challenge for the duration of lockdown. I am unable to really take part in this but am having the most amazing dreams – starting with the fever dreams and then swooshing into the nasty pain killer variety. There are a tangle of other worldleness and I just feel that there has to be something I can do with all of this raw material.

And at the same time I am feeling somewhat pressurised – there are plenty of means telling me how productive we all need to be during this time – Shakespeare wrote Hamlet for goodness sake. And though I know this is aimed at getting people out of any funks they happen to be in… for me it is frustrating – I am normally boiling over with ideas and writing zest and yet here I am still just trying to breath.

Remember the only have too of quarentine is… Survive.

A NaNo New Start

April 2nd, 2020

(from my diary – back blogged)

Last year was my tenth yr of NaNoWriMo and I thought that I would be launching the Punk’s Universe properly – I was working hard on the website and so on but then Covid hit and well… to be honest it is just all a little too close to home and I don’t think any of us want to read about how a pandemic seals the doom of our civilisation right now. And though I do have stuff based at different parts of the time line the vote had been to start the series in the Present Day so that is what I had worked towards.

So I have not taken anything down but nor am I actively sharing and I stopped trying to get the website ready when things got big in China and it was obviously starting to spread. I had sadly already scheduled a load of tweets and ironically due to catching possible covid I then was not well enough to remember them or attempt to stop them going out.

In fact though it is April – I doubt I will be doing much in the way of writing – my vision has been bad since the fever in March and I am still struggling to breath but I shall be researching and planning – I have been listening to audio books as reading is a struggle but I am having to re listen again and again as my concentration is all over the place.

But I do none the less feel that having dedicated a decade of NaNo writing challenges to The Punk’s Universe that maybe it was time for a change anyway – this doesn’t mean I wont be working on it – I am always working on it – just that it is time to focus… well else where – not really sure what I shall do… but something.

The Giant at the Door – Camp NaNo

July 1st, 2019

April I started writing a series based in the time period of the end of our solar system – of little communities that had found ways to survive the red giant this month I am going to be exploring how they got there – how the Empire of Summer planned and what went wrong.

Kind of a prequel and it will help with world building for the story I was trying to write in April.

July Camp Nano – 2019

June 25th, 2019

Many things have happened over the last few months including my dad dying in March – I made a vague attempt at Camp Nano in April resulting in about 30, 000 words being written – mainly due to the fact I wasn’t sleeping.

I haven’t written anything that wasn’t basically some sort of press release or to do with projects or on a song writing course – I’ve written no stories or poems and not for lack of ideas – I just didn’t have the heart to start on any of it – mainly because there is no dad to go out writing with over too long coffee breaks or to read work too etc…

But writing is important to me and something that I am starting to need to do again and so that brings me to here – to Camp NaNo – I am currently tired and over worked and that is not really going to slack off – therefore anything I get written will be a bonus.