My Life

Alright, Let’s Do This

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All the way back in October (I think, it was around the for sure I guess, it had to be before November at least) I declared my intentions to attempt Nano last month.

And so I went in with the best of intentions and had all these plans and all that jazz and then like clockwork, and seriously there was a part of me that always expected this to happen, I lost all motivation.

All of it.

Any creative buzz I felt buzzing underneath my skin and settling into my bones in the months prior to that just faded away without a trace.

I got just under 6,000 words.

And they all happened within the first week.

I think.

I kind of lost track of it all to be honest.

All I know is that after about two weeks I did not look at the document once.

It was open, I cast a glance to the tab pretty much every day. I looked at the website a couple of times after that (I think). I just sort of fell all the way off the wagon.

In the past when I’ve done that I have felt super guilty because I felt like it’s just a month of my life and it’s just 50,000 words. If I got into a habit with it then really doing that many words a day isn’t really that hard. I do that usually anyway what with writing posts up for here and everything. But I just don’t do that when it comes to Nano.

I have done a couple of times, but for the most part I just go in relatively blind which is kind of pointless. And I spend a lot of time playing catch up. Which is exactly as difficult as you think it would be. Rolling word counts are a bitch. They are my enemy. We do not get along.

And we really fell out this year.

I kind of didn’t care.

I didn’t feel bad about it.

Work got stressful last month and it’s still stressful. I found myself falling into Netflix binges and YouTube vortexes, I spent a lot of time writing blog posts instead and working out and reading and all that other stuff.

And I didn’t look at the document at all after a while. And I didn’t care.

The desire has not yet returned to start writing again. I’m mainly just focusing on keeping on top of things and finishing up that reading list of mine, which I am still currently on track with and for some reason am still surprised by.

But I’m not worried about it.

I’ve realised that I’ve come to a point with things where I just accept that sometimes the desire is there and sometimes it hibernates. I’ve just got to go with it and not stress about it because that makes it all the worse and that benefits no-one, especially me.

I will look at the document at some point and I will address the fact that I currently have two different novels on the go and neither of them have fully formed plots as of yet, the middles are just kind of murky. I will get to that.

I don’t know when. But I will…

Parentheses count: 2. See you tomorrow!

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Letters to Autumn, My Life

Letters to Autumn 29

Dear Autumn,

I don’t really have anything to say to you today that I haven’t already said to you already this month.

The clocks went back, so that was another hour to do something with. Whether I actually did, I do not know. This was written last night whilst I was watching an elimination round of Masterchef Australia and  went in on some pineapple. I watched Strictly‘s Halloween show which is always my favourite show of the season.

I came back from rebounding (A fancy way of saying that I bounced on a mini trampoline for 45 minutes, you may laugh at the notion, but the workout is real. You are pretty much always in a crunch position pushing back into your heels. My core, hip flexors and the back of my legs both hate and love me for it.) and once I was showered I just sat around on my sofa wearing shorts and a jumper as one does.

I also bought a new scarf because it came to my attention that I only own one and it’s leopard print, which while it is my fave and my winter staple, it’s weird that I only have the one and it’s not black. So I remedied that. It’s soft and fluffy and it finally feels like the weather is taking the kind of turn where wrapping up will become a requirement for the whole day and not just the earlier hours of the day.

I collected half of my Glossier package, because the sorting office only gave me one box and so today I have had to go back and try and get the second half. I’m mildly annoyed about that fact, but I do have half of it. And it’s the skin care half, which is only annoying because the other half has the sunscreen that I ordered and I ran out of that yesterday morning. Luckily I have a primer that has some SPF in it, so I’ve bunged that on for today for my trek into the outside world. From what I have so far of that though, the packaging is hella cute and nice and it seems like it won’t be too terrifying a change from my beloved Lush. My Boy Brow is also in this second package, so I’ll maybe get an idea as too what the hype is around that. And around Glossier in general. I’ll probably talk about it a bit more a give a little review of sorts in December when I’ve come out of the other side of my plans for November.

That’s something I’m gearing up for. Still plodding away with the write up of book reviews and also trying to fill out the 9/10 gaps that I still have for the month. Whilst trying to figure out this plan for this bloody new idea for next month and then also try to pull together a personal statement, because yeah that is a thing that is going to happen. Maybe. I feel like all of a sudden I have a lot of words to write. And I don’t know what to do about it. Other than write them.

For now though, toady I’m going to try and source that second package, run a few errands, do cardio barre. And then probably some more writing. Got get some shit caught up before the month starts so that I don’t go totally insane with all the words that I have to write…

Turns out I did have some things to say to you today. Gotta go make use of that extra hour.

Love,

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Letters to Autumn, My Life

Letters to Autumn 28

Dear Autumn,

Remember that fucking story that I kept talking about and kept saying how I wanted to work on it next month for NaNo?

Yeah, I do too.

And yet at some point on Thursday morning I got hit with this new idea. One that seemed to hum away and not leave me alone for the whole day. It wasn’t one of those ideas that I had, thought might have been a good idea and then let it slip into the mess that is my thoughts. No it was one of those ideas that stuck.

That decided that it might maybe have some legs to run with. And it is completely different to the original thing that I am STILL working on…

Where is has come from, I honestly could not tell you. Well, maybe I could, but I didn’t think it would get the mental momentum that it did. And I find myself trying to just push it to the back burner because I have whole other thing that I want to focus on, but it’s just there.

Niggling away at me to the point where I am now apparently going to spend my weekend planning it out. And I mean starting from the bulbs that need planting in order to see some roots grow and flowers bloom kind of planning out. There are no real characters here bar the one who started this whole mess.

I don’t know where or when it’s set. I have a vague idea of what the fucking plot is. But it’s super vague. It’s not even a backbone. It’s like one femur (is that the one in you leg… or your arm. I could Google it. I should Google it) and then one of those tiny bones in your foot or ear. It’s almost nothing. I don’t know who any of the characters there are. Or how many there are. I don’t even know how old these people are.

It’s mildly terrifying that I seem to be itching to do this.

But then I’m also kind of excited about it…I’ve gone mad.

Love,

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Letters to Autumn, My Life

Letters to Autumn 11

Dear Autumn,

Sometimes, it turns out, my sporadic nature works for the better without my even realising it.

On Monday night, while I was not scrolling endlessly through Twitter, Tumblr or Instagram I found myself clicking over onto my scheduled posts here on my blog. And well, there are a lot of November posts with titles just waiting to be written because for the most part all the groundwork is there. They are books that I need to review and some other little bookish things that only require the knowledge that is in my head.

And well, I found myself starting to write them.

I didn’t really think much of it at first, I needed something constructive to do with my time and it seemed like it would be more productive than trying to read with my tired eyes (somehow staring at my laptop screen was better for those very eyes once I had switched to night mode) and not take anything in properly.

Then I realised that if I end up with most of the month’s posts written it is one less thing to worry about having to write come the month itself (which isn’t actually as far away as I would like it to be, for a reason that will become apparent shortly). The most I would have to worry about is sharing the posts on the days that they were posted.

And the reason that it is important is because I am crazy enough to think that attempting NaNo this year is a good idea. Now I am a total pantser when it comes to this endeavour. I never really go in with a plan. In fact in the cases of a couple of years I didn’t even really go in with a solid idea. This year feels a bit different in that respect.

For one I’m being a total rebel and working on something that already has a solid almost 16,000 words to it’s name (not that it actually has a name, but you know what I mean) which means that it is something that already has legs with me. Because of that, and secondly, it means that I am just treating November as a way to bolster my word count. If I can bolster it by 50,000 words then great. If I can’t then that’s also fine, I will just be happy that I managed to get it up by at all. Because unlike before this isn’t an idea that I just came up with for the sake of the month and thought it might work and I should try and write 50,000 words on it with no real direction. This is something that has sat with me for a while and that I keep coming back to. And in my head it has a clear direction, I just need to actually get it down onto paper and really flesh out all the details.

Which is what I am using November to do. And I guess to allow myself the best chance of success my brain was like, ‘hey you should really write some of November’s posts up so you don’t have to then’. And so, while I’ve got some time to truly dedicate to that (as well as reading and just enjoying being by the ocean again) I am going to do just that.

Love,

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My Life

Out of the Habit

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When I returned to this blog at the beginning of the month I changed the way I viewed it and took a lot of pressure of myself for the sake of my sanity and to avoid just churning out an old post for the sake of getting something out on a day to day basis.

Turning that switch off in my head has proved to be incredibly beneficial to the way that I view this blog. I stopped looking at it as some kind of chore and that in turn helped to create a more creative view for myself on it. I started to feel more inspired and more inclined to actually write content and it’s great. There is still a little bit of blogger’s guilt when I do miss a day, or in the case of this last week just go days without posting. But I would rather that then getting home for the day and then writing something that I kind of hate the entire that I am typing it and just letting it post. And I have to keep reminding myself of that on the days where my usual posting time passes and nothing comes with it.

Anyway, thinking about this has all come about because come Sunday I am going back to posting every single day. Every day. For the whole 31 days. Something that I haven’t done since Letters to Spring earlier in the year. Which at this point in the year seems like a distant, distant memory. And it felt kind of hard then even though I was in a better habit with this blog then.

I don’t even really know what to expect from next month at this point. On the one hand I’m not all that worried because the beauty of the month is that it is almost like a diary with the way that I approach it. They don’t have to be all that substantial in terms of content, in that in my head I just feel like I can take a little thing that happened on any given day and then just talk through my thought process in some way. In that respect I pretty much treat this project as a way to keep the cobwebs from building up too much on my writing and just get very Virginia Woolf about it all. And that is something that can take as little as half an hour each day. On the other had though I am kind of terrified of having to get back into the habit of posting every day because it’s not something that I used to doing at this point any more. Hasn’t been for months. And I don’t quite know how I am going to react to it.

I mean I have slowly built up to it in some ways with this month, but then I’ve also really not, given my almost near radio silence for the last week.

For one, I am going to have to really nail the whole being organised thing (more on how that is going later on in the week, see I occasionally have things planned…) and secondly I’m going to have to keep reminding myself that it’s okay if they get a bit more stream of consciousness than usual, that’s the beauty of the project that I decided to partake in and kind of make whatever the hell I want.

Oh, and I also need to remind myself not to repeat myself, so I gotta get better of keeping track what I wrote, which I guess links into the whole being organised thing.

And then I need to start worrying about November…which although themed in my head is also going to still (try) and be an everyday-er kind of job. So far, the month has a lot of book reviews scheduled because those have pretty disappeared recently, but I need to get more bookish ideas that are not that over the next few weeks so it’s literally just a case of writing them up, not thinking of ideas and then trying to figure out what the hell to do with them the day before the post is due.

I’m feeling good about the next couple of months though. So good in fact that I am, yet again, considering taking part in Nano in November. I might cheat juuustttt a little and work on an already existing manuscript,  but if I can get 50,000 words added to that it will be all the closer to actually being a finished thing and that kind of blows my mind. I mean there are a lot of other hurdles to jump over before it gets to that, but I’m doing the damn thing.

But before that I gotta do the damn thing of Letters to Autumn, and also make a modification to my sign off…

Parentheses count: 2. See you next time!

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My Life

Still Talking About It

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I do not know how many times I have talked about creativity in my life on this blog, but it’s been a lot and I can’t imagine that I am going to stop any time soon because it continues to be a thing that plagues me. It’s like this friend that you know you should maybe cut out of your life but also want to impress it immensely and so you clutch on to it in a bid to impress it. And so you find yourself in this weird cycle that seems almost to break out of.

This is relevant to something I swear.

I went through this phase in August when I was just super creative and words just flowed out of me and I ended up with a document that housed nearly 15,000 words of workable material. It was great. Then that all just dried up and I stopped being able to actually produce a sentence.

Okay, obviously I am being dramatic, but I did stop looking at the document for a while and then I stopped having ideas related to it and it all just kind of dimmed out and I accepted that the fickle friend I call my creativity had just sort of left me.

Then, because I’m an idiot, I had a book delivered to the wrong Waterstones and so had to schlep my ass to Piccadilly Circus to collect. And because I was making the trip up there anyway I decided that I might as well just sit in their downstairs cafe and see what happens (and try not to buy anymore books, which I failed at because I am weak and some books are just too pretty to say no to…). And well, I finally finished something that I was arguably supposed to have written a week ago and just couldn’t get down onto the page.

And that was all well and good and then just as I started to eat a blueberry muffin (which was the first one I had had in ages and I forgot how much I loved them) I finally had a new thought and opened up an old word document and then just found myself writing. A sustained idea. That actually made sense and slotted into the general arc that I have vaguely planned for this thing.

I typed out everything that I had in my head and then discovered that it sort of trickled out in a place that I can go back to when I go back to it. Which wasn’t yesterday like I had planned when I came home, but is something that feels to be on the horizon.

This also isn’t the first time that this has happened to me once I walk into the hallowed halls of that building (it’s next door to a church, this almost works). And it makes perfect sense that creativity just starts flowing when you’re surrounded by other peoples’ work that has made it’s way into the world. It’s kind of hard not to be inspired there. And basically it came at time when I really needed it because I was reaching a point when I was almost frustrated at my lack of productivity.

It just seems a little inconvenient that whenever I find myself in a massive rut that I just have to make an hour (or so) trip to a giant bookshop (where temptation is rife) and just eat cake and drink coffee. Although I do love spending time in there.

By the way, I am totally aware that this is most definitely psychological and that it would definitely work if I just got out of the house and go somewhere else, but I am a cliche and a sucker for working in cafes and the like because a part of my brain switches on and I get shit done. I’m gonna have to travel for that anyway, might as well travel to one of my favourite places in the world.

And now I have something to work with again and somewhere to go and a renewed passion for this project. Although I am still also putting off the inevitable when it comes to planning out the nitty gritty of it all still…I’ll save that for another day.

For now though, I’m gonna go to cardio barre and work on this scene a bit more once that is done.

And thank the Waterstones gods for their cafe and the injection of creativity.

I swear I might stop talking about creativity one day. I doubt it though…

Parentheses count: 4. See you tomorrow!

 

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My Life, writing

Camp Nano – The Final Update

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So last week I felt full of hope that I could actually churn out 10,000 words for the month and get it done on time. I honestly felt like on some level that I could achieve that.

At this point on the 27th of the month, I am not so sure anymore.

My word count has not officially changed since last week. That’s mainly because for some unknown reason I have yet to type up everything that I have written up in a notebook so I don’t actually know the true word count. I would guess that it’s around 5,000 words.

And look, realistically speaking I could actually probably reach my word count because the words are in my head. They won’t leave me alone, but for some reason I am lacking all motivation to actually get together and type it up. And so I haven’t. They just sort of exist in my head.

I am going to try and reach my word count. I finish work tomorrow afternoon (hello half day) for two weeks and I am thinking that I am going to just sort of blitz it all that I can. That is my intention at the very least. I am definitely going to get some shit typed up from that damn notebook if I do nothing else.

So the final update is that there has been no real update from last week. I have tried to use this month as a way to kickstart myself to get back to writing and on the one hand it has because I’ve been feeling creative a lot more recently, but also it hasn’t because there is nothing really to show for it right now.

The good thing is that I’m not letting it get me down or anything, I am just taking this as something that has happened and am going to keep on going with it.

It is what it is.

Parentheses count: 1. See you tomorrow!

 

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