Monthly Archives: July 2014

Book Haul

Just a quick post today to show off my new book haul!

 

I was wandering around town in the sweltering heat, when I stumbled upon a shop selling books with some really great offers. I actually go there a lot and have bought some pretty great books from there, and quite cheaply, too.

Anyway, after perusing a little while. I spotted Under The Never Sky by Veronica Rossi, and was instantly enamoured with the cover art. It’s truly beautiful. Another reason this book struck me is because I avidly watch Lindsay Mead’s book reviews on Youtube, and she mentioned this quite some time ago in one of her book hauls.

I like Lindsay’ channel because she chooses genres that I wouldn’t usually go for, and she always has a great range of tastes. She also reviews self-published works, too, so I think that gives the audience a great all-rounder view of what’s out there. Go give her a follow! 🙂 I’ve also subscribed to a few other book-bloggy channels through her, as well. They’re based in the USA, so it’s cool to see what’s popular over there.

So once I decided to go ahead and pick up that book, I discovered that not only did they have the sequel, but they had the whole TRILOGY! I got ALL THREE BOOKS for £5!

I know! Am I jammy, or what?

So naturally I stuffed them all in my arms, admiring all the gorgeous matching covers, and bought them.

neversky

 

I started reading the first book last night in bed. It was pretty late and I’d been working hard all day doing my transcribing, so the fact that I managed to get through the first three chapters with droopy eyes is a miracle. I suppose it shows that the story was intriguing enough to keep me awake. 😉

So far, the writing is pretty choppy, but I like that. It’s action-packed.

The dystopian setting with all the different sectors and the artificial fruit, etc, reminds me a whole lot of Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood, which is an astonishingly great novel, by the way, and probably my favourite dystopia ever. I’ve only just met Pereguine, too, but the character looks a lot like a tribe member in Oryx and Crake. They’re called “Crakers”, and they’re basically a test-tube grown species who are allowed to live in their own little Eden. They were created by a young genius called Crake and socialised by Oryx, who are lovers in the novel. It’s an amazing story told from the point of view of a guy called Snowman who, in the fallout after an apocalypse, basically recounts how jealousy destroyed the universe.

I know. Amazing. There are spliced creatures called “Pigoons” and “Rakunks” running wild, too, so you NEED to read that. If you love the Fallout games, like I do, then you’ll love reading Oryx and Crake.

So yeah, there’s many clues so far that hint to me that perhaps Veronica Rossi was quite heavily inspired by Margaret Atwood. I’ve no idea if she actually was.

That’s my book haul and my current reading. I’ve also managed to plug a Youtuber and one of my favourite novels to boot. Not bad for one blog post!

I’m hoping to soon give you an update about my current WIP, which I picked up after a long break. It currently sits at about 50k, and it’s coming along nicely. I prefer novels to be in the 70k/80k range, but I usually let them run and see where it takes me. As a rule, my novels have never gone much over 90k.

The working title is “Prom Spirit”, but I’m warming to the title being “Beyond” once it’s done. I think that’s a beautiful title, and fitting, too.

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I am hoping to build up a network of writers/bloggers to give me emotional/practical support during the writng process. I’ve been going this alone (barring my lovely, very helpful fiance!) for a long time, and seeing as I’ve decided to re-brand myself with a pen name, I think it’s only fitting I start reaching out a bit more.

So, if you’re a writer/blogger, please subscribe to me and I will subscribe right back.
Than we can be pals. 🙂

The writer’s day job

Everybody has to have one, right?

 

Well, having worked in various crummy places, doing some ugly manual work in the form of anything from cleaning, to maid work, to shop work, I’m finally doing something that actually uses my skills.

I am a freelance transcriber.

‘Hark! What is a transcribermidooodle?!’ I hear you cry!

Well, a transcriber is someone who listens to an audio file of a meeting – could be an interview, a grievance hearing, a disciplinary meeting, could be anything. Mostly, it’s for big businesses and corporate banks, mostly in the HR sectors. It’s the transcriber’s job to write up the minutes of that meeting in a clear, readable script in the style of the client’s choosing, for a fee. The kind of minutes I provide at the moment are verbatim, meaning word for word.

The company I work for are pretty awesome. They’re international and have freelancers from all over the world producing transcripts for their client base, ranging all the way from the UK to New Zealand. ‘Freelancing’ means that I am self-employed, and the work comes based on demand. Whilst it isn’t by any means a reliable income, it’s the perfect job for a writer. It means that I have time to pursue my writerly interests and complete novels to my heart’s content, without feeling like I’m sacrificing anything.

Freelancers are risk takers, essentially; people who aren’t afraid of uncertainty if it gives them the freedom to express themselves creatively. For me, that’s the most important factor; as they say, never live to work, only work to live. Nobody on their death bed ever said, ‘Gosh, I just wish I’d spent more time in that office.’

Besides, transcribing isn’t easy – it’s an actual, genuine skill unique to writers. How many people’s hands could stand writing up to 20,000 words on a busy day? Not many. But for me, typing is akin to novel-writing, minus the creativity – it’s technical writing, but somehow it still has that therapeutic effect on me that some people get from painting, or needlework.

I enjoy, and have always enjoyed, the process of filling a blank page with words.

So, in a nutshell, that’s how I make my dough. For now, anyway…*eagerly awaits big-publisher-person to smash the door in and shower me with money*

I’m currently working on…

…A new YA!

 

Howdy folks,

 

I just thought I’d do a little blog about the current YA novel I’m working on. This one got put aside for a while after one rejection too many sent me into a total slump. You know that feeling, when you just ask yourself if all the fretting and frantic writing is worth it? Well, it is. You just have to make it worthwhile for you and not for anybody else. Not an agent, not a publisher, but you.

This whole writing gig began from a deep passion of mine to write stories, right? So what’s changed?

 

So the working title for this ghostly romance is Prom Spirit. It’s about a 16 year old girl called Jamie, who dies on prom night after a fight with her best friend and boyfriend, only to discover herself alone in limbo, where the world is grey and isolated, and her only companion is…a boy who died on his prom night in the 80s.

Jamie must re-visit the past, present and future alongside 80s boy Zachary, to discover how her death affected the lives of those who loved her – especially her little sister Leah, who must now grow up without her – and to find out how she’ll ever move on to the afterlife  – if there even is one.

But what about mysterious Zachary? Zachary has enjoyed solitude far too long. In limbo, he can forget his past and focus on his love of dancing without the critical eyes of an entire high school to judge him. Shady about his death, Zachary wants to live in the now and forget about the world – both of the living, and of the dead.

Now, he wants Jamie to do the same. But is it easy to just forget everything when your life has been cut short? And what secret is Zachary hiding about his death?

These prom spirits (SEE WHAT I DID THERE!) don’t know why they’ve been lumped together in limbo, but Jamie intends to find out. Ghosts always have unfinished business, right? So it’s their job, together, to discover what that unfinished business is.

Sounds easy…until love gets in the way.

 

This story incluuuuudes (but is not limited to!):

 

A small town turned creepy limbo other-world:

 

smalltown

 

A dog called Peanut with a sixth sense:

dog

 

A gaze at the stars from a quiet, unlit city rooftop all alone:

city

A  beautiful black prom dress with a green sash:

dress

A couple of small-town friends who are torn apart:

ghostworld

A magical flying moped:

moped

An adorable ghost-boy with all the personality of Duckie from Pretty in Pink (if not that sense of humour – ain’t nobody got his sense of humour!)

and a very fetching 80s prom outfit not too dissimilar to young Duckworth’s:

duckie

But with Steff’s hair.

Because we’ve all secretly got a crush on Steff even though he is horrible. No? Just me then:

steph

 

So there we have it. Just a little teaser about what I’m currently working on, and I hope you think it’s as cool as I do. Though be fair, nobody ever really thinks ANYTHING is as cool as I do, because…well, who says I’m cool?!

Now someone needs to sign me ASAP.

 

Toodles!

 

 

T