Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Bring Me Sunshine New Trailer!

The very kind Kathy Golden over at Book Trailer Services is just starting out and made this super trailer for Bring Me Sunshine.

I think it's fair to say that I am DELIGHTED!

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Life is Good

I’ve been commissioned to write/compile a book for a care-leavers project which is coming to an end. I'm collecting stories, experiences, thoughts, ideas, top tips for independent living and lots of other things, and adding a few of my own. By day I’m out and about – interviewing people, talking to people, hearing their stories, finding out what’s made the difference in their lives, and how this particular project has impacted on them – and I’m doing a lot of listening; to young people, old people, support workers, mentors, outdoor ed. instructors, project leaders, cleaners, managers … everyone who’s had anything to do with the project and who would like to have their say about it now.

By night, I’m sat at my desk writing up my interview or story or bunch of top tips or the latest little piece of wonderfulness which has crossed my path …

And then I go to bed, happy.

Even though when you read the news or watch TV you could be forgiven for thinking that we’re all just on this great big downward spiral to doom … I just want to say it’s not quite like that. There is some great stuff going on in the world.

Real people. Doing real things. Changing real lives.

And frankly, that’s uplifting. 

Monday, 8 December 2014

Procrastination? Bah... no problem.

Writing is hard. It’s not just a matter of typing a few thousand words. The process involves digging deep into your inner psyche to come up with a story, attaching emotion to that story (which means you have to feel that emotion at some level), making sense of it (for your readers), making it interesting and enjoyable, and turning it into something which doesn’t resemble the creative emotional regurgitation it really is.

It's no wonder we procrastinate sometimes. Here are my tips to help you get past the Big P. 

1. Remove the time pressure. What’s the hurry anyway? You don’t have to write a whole novel in one day. Allow yourself to take it easy because even 100 words a day will get you there in the end.

2. Set yourself an alarm and write until it goes off. Start with fifteen minutes, because you can do anything for fifteen minutes, and all those fifteen minutes sessions will soon add up

3. Do it in the morning before you do anything else. (Okay - coffee allowed.) Your brain waves are at their most creative when you first wake so this is the ideal time to tackle a creative project. 

4. Eat that frog. Seriously - if the worst thing you had to do all day was eat a frog, you’d know that once you ate it, everything else would be a cinch. So do it. Eat that frog and there’s nothing else to worry out.
Toby's day improved dramatically after the frog incident.
5. Ask for help. Stuck with a plot point, continuity issue or character flaw? Tell someone else and ask their opinion. They might not have the answer, but just getting it out of your system could well leave enough room for you to come up with a solution yourself.  

6. Take the phone off the hook. Block facebook, twitter and pinterest. Shut your workspace door.

7. Alternatively, write with a friend. You can keep each other on track, reassure each other, and give each other moral support.

8. Form a habit. Do something the same time every day so that it starts to become a habit. When you don’t do it, you’ll miss it.

9. Make a list of everything you need to do, and include writing on that list. Tick off everything you achieve, as you achieve it, and commit to finishing the list every day.

10. Allow yourself to reflect on the great feeling you get when you actually achieve what you set out to.