Tag Archives: goals

those decisions I made

You know when you’re writing a blog post and you keep deleting it and starting again because there’s so much to say and maybe you want to say it all but maybe you actually want to say none of it and would rather just talk about something else instead? That.

So lets talk about something else, shall we?

fields of gold

Remember how I set myself some goals a month ago? Maybe it’s time to report back on those. See how I’ve done. That will keep me nice and distracted…

So, I made a decision to only blog once a week:

And bar one extra blog post (which just burst out of me) I’ve stuck to this and it’s made a huge difference. I have far more time for other things and it’s also taken the (self-imposed) pressure off me to blog in a certain way or follow any sort of plan – I’ve just been blogging from the heart and seeing how it goes. This, in itself, has felt different to me – there have been times when I’ve been scared to hit ‘publish’ because the posts have felt too raw or real and it’s made me feel vulnerable. But I’ve gone ahead and done it and the support I’ve had in the comments section has been wonderful. At a time when I’ve been feeling all over the place, blogging from the heart has soothed me. That’s been a lovely unexpected consequence of my decision.

I also decided to stop joining in with linkies other than my own.

Again, I’ve stuck to this (apart from one little link up with #Prose4t) and it’s made such a difference to my evenings! I’m no longer caught up in hours of blog commenting. The downside has been I’ve missed reading the variety of posts and I feel less connected to the wider blogging community… but my own little #WhatImWriting community is thriving as much as ever. You can’t have it all and I’ve become very aware that I can’t scatter my attention too widely without losing something.

Of course both these decisions about blogging were bound to affect my blog stats… but, having just looked at them right now for the first time in weeks, funnily enough they’re just back to where they were in February before my blog post about education and #THISislearning campaign sent my hits rocketing. Huh. I thought they would have plummeted way more than that. Ok, I’m quite chuffed!

Then there was my reading target – one book a fortnight.

I’ve almost stuck to that – I’ve read (loved) and reviewed Baby X by Rebecca Ann Smith and am now reading Quiet – the power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking‘ by Susan Cain. As a self-confessed introvert, I’m loving it (it’s not exactly a hard sell!) and finding it really enlightening.

I also said I didn’t intend to do any creative writing in June.

This was because I was struggling to find time for writing as well as drawing and was somehow ending up doing less of both because my focus was so split. True to my intentions (with one exception) I wrote nothing creative throughout the month. My brain was full of story ideas though, so that creative drive didn’t go away! It also felt great to relieve myself of the self-imposed pressure and most of all it made a huge difference to my main aim…

… to draw every day.

I DID IT! I set myself a #GuessTheFilm challenge where I worked my way through the alphabet drawing a different picture to represent/suggest a different film every day. I posted them all on Twitter and Instagram and some on Facebook too and had a lot of fun with people guessing them. I also plain old loved the experience of drawing, built up a few skills and some confidence and I’m now working on an assignment for my illustration course. Drawing has really helped me emotionally and psychologically over the last few weeks too. Writing has helped too in a kind of cathartic, letting it out way, but there’s something about visual art that has taken me away from what’s going on in my head (and what’s going on in the world). Good stuff.

#Guessthe film f - I

Anything else? Oh yes – social media! I said I’d stick to just half an hour a day in the evening.

*Falls off chair laughing at utter failure to stick to this goal at all.*

We’ll leave it at that shall we?

Oh, and there was the very important goal of making the time with my youngest count.

I’d love to report some kind of soft-focussed, skipping through fields, glowing version of the last month here, but I’ll be honest. The boy is an utter delight most of the time and one of the reasons he’s an utter delight is that he is amazing at entertaining himself. He wanders off and creates stories with his cars, he wraps himself in blankets and says he’s going shopping (because the traditional way to go shopping is in a blanket sausage), he ‘reads’ books to himself, he does jigsaws… and, yes, ok, he watches ‘the wheels on the bus’ on You Tube far too many times. Could I have spent more time baking and crafting and taking part in wholesome, pinable activities with him? Yes. But we’ve spent some lovely, quality time together nonetheless. He’s really lovely to chat to (even at the tender age of three) and we even did skip through a field!

Finally, I decided I wouldn’t go to BritMums Live

I had been looking forward to it but when it got nearer the time it just didn’t feel right. Instead, I spent time that weekend with friends close to home. It was what I needed. No regrets.

Over all – not a bad month. Well, kinda. Considering. You know what I mean.

 Writing Bubble

where I’m at – #WhatImWriting

It’s Monday, the boys are back at school and it’s time for a proper ‘What I’m Writing’ post! I haven’t written about writing-y stuff for a while so there are a few things to catch up on.

trees

My ideal writer’s retreat – a forest glade in the sunshine. I haven’t retreated here to write yet (this was taken yesterday and I had two small boys with me) but I’m determined to at some point!

CampNaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) happens in November and is an online community of writers all aiming to write a novel in a month. A NOVEL IN A MONTH! Obviously I’m not crazy/talented/dedicated enough to attempt such a thing but I have signed up to the camp version which is this month. This is much more laid-back as you get to pick your own word count and your project can be anything word-related. I did it two years ago and wrote 15,000 words – it really helped with my motivation.

This time round I’ve set myself a target of 5,000 words because I want to focus on my picture books which aren’t really about word count at all. I’ve also decided to include blog posts in the target. Within this, there is also a hidden reading challenge as three of the blog posts I want to write are book reviews and I need to read the books first! So far, I’ve written 2194 words (although that doesn’t include this post!) but that’s all blogging and NO picture books! I WILL write some soon, I WILL!

London Book Fair

I’m going! I’m not quite sure what to expect but there are lots of interesting seminars to attend and people to network with, all in the area of writing and publishing and all under one roof, so it sounds fab to me! It’s this week and I’m combining it with a business conference and a meet up with some blogging friends, and also bookending it with nights at my parents house (I’m leaving my youngest with them) so it’s going to be a busy week. I fully expect to reach Friday exhausted with my head in a spin but I know it will be worth it.

Agent Submissions

I wrote a while back about having submitted some of my picture book manuscripts to agents. Thankfully at The Festival of Writing back in September we were all told how tricky it is to find an agent and how incredibly common rejection is, so the responses I’ve had (or rather, the three no responses, one rejection and a ‘we didn’t get your MS can you resend?’ followed by silence) haven’t really got to me. I just need to try again. The issue is finding the time to do so, as agent research and meeting the submission requirements is not a swift process. I know I’m procrastinating though and I just need to prioritise it. Basically, in my juggly life, unless I prioritise things, they don’t get done!

Blogging

Oh man, blogging is time-consuming, it really is. Not just the writing of posts (although I don’t seem to have a gift for speed, it has to be said) but the promotional activity (which I keep deciding I need to focus more on, then failing) and the social side (which is lovely but takes time and energy). When you’re a blogger who wants to write other things – novels, short stories or whatever – you do find yourself wondering if you’ve got the balance right. I do, anyway. Blogging is taking a lot of my focus at the moment. The blog post I wrote about education got so much attention (by my standards) that I’ve not felt able to concentrate on other types of writing because there’s been so much going in in my head. And there are more blog posts brewing too. I’m hoping CampNano helps me put some energy elsewhere.

I’d better leave it at that, I as I have planning, organising and packing to do for the week ahead!

Writing Bubble

plans for 2016

I’ve been thinking for a while that I need to figure out a plan for this year. I’m not sure it’s goals or resolutions I’m after, so much as a direction to take and some decisions about what I might need to do along the way.

organiser

I know I need to organise my time more effectively and I know I need more focus. Not only do I have this blog, my work and things I want to do with my writing, I also have a big, new, exciting (and terrifying) project that I want to take on. And then there’s parenting, the most important aspect of my life. My boys are 8, 6, and nearly 3 so still need a lot of my energy and attention. And I always want time for my husband, my family and my friends all of whom light up all the various paths of my life like the sparkly jewels they are.

How to manage all this has been whirling round in my head for a while. Some ideas are starting to emerge and I’m kind of hoping that if I write this post, it will help. Here’s what I’ve got so far:

Areas In Which I Will Make Change Occur in 2016 – With Perhaps A Few Set Ideas But Mostly Just Possibilities (Catchy, eh? Bet you all wish you had some of these!)

Parenting

I need to focus on my kids more and not be so distracted by writing stories in my head, planning and thinking about other stuff and especially by social media. I’m finding that the age the boys are now, while easier in some ways (they sleep well, eat normal food and can entertain themselves a fair bit) is more complex and challenging in others. I need to be present and be the best parent I can be. Thoughts in this area include:

  • Banning smart phones between certain hours (mine and my husband’s – the kids don’t have any) in order to avoid the temptation to be ‘just checking’ the flippin’ things constantly (oh, the seductive flashing light that tells you there’s a notification of some kind!)
  • Introducing a ‘family story time’ just before bed. We read to them all when they were small and our youngest still has bedtime stories every night. The six year old often joins in with these (either to read to his little brother or to be read to) but our eldest usually just reads to himself now. All of them love being read to though and stories are so calming at bedtime and such a bonding experience. We need to re-introduce more of these ideals.
  • Planning weekend activities in advance so we don’t spend half the day wondering what do, changing our minds, and waiting ’till we’re all cross before we leave the house.

Blogging

I love my blog but I’m concerned about how much time blogging takes away from my other writing. This has been more of an issue since my toddler dropped his nap as my writing time is now pretty much limited to the evenings. Linkies are very time consuming (especially if you want to be a committed commenter – I spent three whole evenings on commenting last week!) and the social media that comes hand in hand with the blog can be overwhelming. Possibilities for change (and a few extra plans) here are:

  • Only write two (or maximum of three) posts a week – my linkie post (which I’ve now decided to put a bit more content into by sharing some posts from the previous week), the post I link up to the linky and possibly one other post some weeks.
  • Only link up to one other linky a week besides my own (this wouldn’t have to be the same one other linky every week as I have a fair few I like to join in with).
  • Make a structured plan for social media – see below
  • Go to BritMums Live for the first time! I’ve got a free ‘editor delegate’ ticket because I write the Poetry and Prose round up and I plan on putting it to good use. I could learn loads.
  • Arrange another #WhatImWriting meet up!

Writing

This is really being squeezed at the moment hence the need to organise my blogging time a bit. I do have some actual goals for this year in this area:

  • Carry on the push to find an agent for my picture books – this will mean re-submitting numerous times and getting good at handling rejection. Re-writes may quite possibly be part of the process too.
  • Write some more picture books – three more this year at least. As it happens, I’ve just written a whole new one! We don’t have broadband at the moment so my internet time is basically just down to when I can nick my husband’s phone to use as a wifi hotspot. I’m faffing around on social media MUCH less and have more time to write!
  • Keep writing my limericks whenever I can and continue to move towards my self-publishing goal.
  • Consider going to the Festival of Writing in York for a day (I loved it last year!)

Social media

The love and bane of my life. I check FB like it’s a nervous tick. Having no broadband might be frustrating but I’m certain it’s good for me. Plans here include:

  • Remove the FB app from my phone (I’m going to do this as soon as we get our broadband back)
  • Institute a smart phone ban after picking the kids up from school and until they are in bed (that’s a lot of hours! Can I cope? Yes, of course I can – I’ve only had one for five years after all!). This should help with my parenting goals because yes, I do check my phone when I’m with the kids even though I know I shouldn’t.
  • Schedule tweets and FB posts for blog purposes – I’m hopeless at this.
  • Makes lists for twitter. I waste loads of time being completely disorganised in this area.
  • Have a set time of day (an hour in the evening?) when I do all my social media stuff and to stay within that set time.
  • Post more often on my FB blog page. I’m rubbish at this too and my insights page suggests FB hardly shows my posts to anyone. But having just looked at my blog stats report for 2015, it appears that many of those ‘sights’ lead to referrals. So perhaps I should concentrate a bit more on a decent FB strategy? I’ve never put any money into it. Advice in this area is very welcome!

Work

I don’t talk about it on my blog but I’m writing this here anyway because I know I need to make some changes in this area. I’m spending a lot of time at the moment trying to work out what to do for the best.

Reading

I love reading and I’m a better writer because of it. I’m thinking of joining Goodreads this year as a way of keeping track of what I’ve read and maybe writing a few more reviews. I read 25 books last year (I posted yesterday about some of my favourites) which is much fewer than in either of the two previous years (I read 60 in 2013!) so I’d like to at least hit 30 books this year.

Big new exciting thing

This will take time, energy and commitment hence the need to re-think my approach to blogging and writing. I’ll let you know more soon!

***

That was a fairly long list! I think it’s helped a bit to see it written (well, typed) down. I’ll have to start cracking on with some of these now won’t I?!

How do you manage your time? Any tips most welcome!

Writing Bubble

achieving dreams – #WhatImWriting

Aspirations are funny things. I’ve mused before about whether their real power lies not so much in the thrill of achieving them but in the joy of having something to aim for: an exciting goal glittering on the horizon, something to focus on and to dream about. Like a guiding star shining above the more mundane aspects of daily existence.

star cluster

Aspirations can certainly be seductive, whatever form they take (career, home, family, travel – the list is endless) and thinking about them can be a stronger motivator than any other. Without them, I suspect life would lack the flavour and momentum that their sense of possibility brings to it. You might not achieve all your aspirations, you might not achieve many of them at all, but as long as you have them, there’s something out there for you isn’t there? Something to reach for?

What about if you do achieve your dreams though? What next? Do you set yourself further goals, ones that are harder to achieve and further away? Or can you simply bathe happily in the joy of aspirations reached for the rest of your life?

Perhaps it depends what they are. I always wanted a loving husband and three kids; a fairly normal sort of aspiration perhaps, but there it was. I’m fortunate enough to have that, and it’s wonderful. It’s also exhausting. It’s fun and fulfilling but it’s challenging. And as much as I know I’m lucky, my daily life is full of an awful lot of washing and cleaning, not nearly as much sleep as I’d like, and more shouting than I consider ideal. So, while I achieved my dream, living it is not a life of perfect bliss and I often aspire to doing a better job in a hundred little ways. But then I wouldn’t expect it to be otherwise. Three kids were never going to be easy, real marriages aren’t like fairytales and running a household was bound to be hard work in some form or other.

Is it different with other aspirations? How about specific, ‘once in a lifetime’ types like seeing Niagara Falls, flying in a hot air balloon or swimming with dolphins? The experience would surely be as exciting as the dream in those cases wouldn’t it? Yes, absolutely – I’ve experienced one of those (the first) and it was fantastic, a real thrill – but they’re also short-lived. The memories are wonderful but they are just memories (and mine, being over twenty years old, have faded considerably!). That said, building up an archive of achieved aspirations like that certainly adds to the joy of existence and I guess, with enough time and money you could even spend your whole life surfing the wave of these types of dreams…

Are there any more long-lasting aspirations that are as wonderful to experience as they look from afar though? Specific career goals perhaps? It’s possible, but in my experience, every goal realised in this area too, brings its own challenges. But then, no aspiration has ever burned quite so brightly as my desire to be a published author. When I imagine how it would feel to see my name on the cover of a printed book… to open it and run my fingers through its pages… to sit and read it to my kids… ahhh. I’m smiling just thinking about it.

Would achieving that not bring me joy unbridled? Of course it would!

… For five minutes, or perhaps five hours but beyond that, well, publication would bring a whole other range of pressures and expectations. I’d have to market my books for a start, and I’d also have to write more. And maybe it wouldn’t be to my own schedule anymore. There would be deadlines and pressure from editors and publishers. And that’s if things were going well.

But you know what? None of this is bad news. Living the reality of an achieved dream, rather than musing on the fantasy, doesn’t make that dream any less worthwhile. Sure, my home life isn’t perfect but it still makes me very happy; my family is the most important thing in the world to me. And my memories of Niagra Falls may have faded but some sense of them will always linger… and that sense makes me want to fulfil those other ‘once in a lifetime’ dreams too. And then, even as aware as I am of the hard work involved in publishing a book, imagining turning the pages of that book still makes my stomach fizz with excitement.

And that’s the joy of aspirations really isn’t it? Unlimited by practicalities, they exist in perfect form. They are the wonder of motherhood without the exhaustion of sleepless nights, the excitement of choosing a dream home without the burden of paying for it and the fulfilment of publishing a book without the pressure of sustaining a writing career. They are the pop and whizz of ‘what if?’ and ‘let’s try that!’.

So, for me at least, I think the excitement of aspirations is in the journey just as much as the goal. And I love that about them. After all, individual aspirations can only be achieved once (if at all), but thinking, planning and dreaming about achieving them makes their sparkle limitless.

Every day I imagine how it it would feel to get that publishing deal. Maybe it will never happen, but my life is one hell of a lot richer for having dreamed, hoped and strived for it.

What do aspirations mean to you?

***

Thanks to Reneé from Mummy Tries for the inspiration for this post! Reneé is running the Brit Mums Carnival this week and the theme is ‘achieving dreams’. Why not pop over to see what other people have come up with?

Muddled Manuscript

here’s hoping – #WhatImWriting

Tuesday! Time for #WhatImWriting!

snowy view

Snowy view. Just cos.

But… what AM I actually writing at the moment? I’m not sure what’s happened to this year – I started out January with various writing plans but none of them have really materialised. Somehow or other, illness or sluggishness or just general stuff has been tripping me up. As I said last week, I don’t want to beat myself up for this, life just gets in the way of writing goals sometimes, but I am keen to actually start achieving things again.

The writing challenges I’ve done over the past couple of weeks have given me a hint of that feeling I get when I’ve written something, and I really do want to get on with these picture book manuscripts now. Thankfully, things are finally settling down a bit in the Bubble household – the big boys are back at school and my husband is better so this week I have hopes that I might start making progress again.

I’ll need to concentrate though, so I think I’m going to to stay off the blog for the rest of the week *checks this week’s #theprompt… argh, it’s a tempting one!* as blogging seems to eat all my time at the moment. If I really knuckle down to my manuscripts though, who knows how far I’ll get – I’d love to have something to report next week!

Hmm, and that’s pretty much all I have to say for myself this Tuesday. Hope you all had restful half terms and are happily throwing yourselves in the direction of some writing this week.

Writing Bubble

new year plans (or not) – #WhatImWriting

It’s time for the first #WhatImWriting of 2015! Chrissie is hosting this week so if you’re hoping to link up, please head to Muddled Manuscript for tea, cake and a good old chat.

jasper mountainSo, where to begin? Um… I have no idea. I took two weeks off blogging and writing over Christmas and it’s totally thrown me out of all my routines and I kind of feel like I’ve forgotten how to write.

It was great to have a break though and I have to admit, as far as blogging goes, it was a massive relief. I hadn’t quite realised how tied to blogging I feel – the need to post a couple of times a week, to join in linkies and read and comment on other blogs. I enjoy it, but having a proper break made me realise that I do kind of view it like work. Fun work I don’t get paid for (admittedly), but with that sort of ‘must do, can’t get out of’ ethic that I don’t associate with hobbies of any sort. Anyone else feel like this?

Then there’s the creative writing. The first week I really missed it, I ITCHED to write but, what with kids and present-wrapping and general build-up of festive activities, I literally didn’t have the time. Then we were away for a few days over Christmas and writing of any sort wasn’t on my mind at all. When we got back the itch seemed to have gone. I started blogging again a few days ago (this is my fourth post of the year which is a bit extreme for me!) but as far as creative writing goes, I haven’t written a single word.

I feel like there’s maybe some lesson for myself in all this but I’m not sure what. If it was a relief to stop blogging should I blog less? Should I make sure I don’t take too long off writing in the future since it’s brought me to a standstill? Should I transfer my energies from blogging to writing this year?

You see, I do feel like I should have a plan. I’ve read a fair few blogs over the past few days and everyone seems to be full of decisions and intentions for 2015. Meanwhile I haven’t made any decisions at all! I was hoping some goals would reveal themselves while writing this post but they haven’t really.

It’s not that I can’t think of anything I want to achieve. It’s more like there’s too much I want to do and I don’t know what to focus on this year. Do I write more picture books, work on the ones I’ve got and try and find an agent for them? Should I finish the novel that was a big focus of mine in the first half of last year (it’s at 55,000 words at the mo), finish my other novel (the one I only wrote 7000 words of before getting distracted by other things I wanted to write) or  do I start a whole new novel for kids that I’ve had an idea for bubbling away for months? And then there’s my old romance novel to consider too!

No wait, no time for that, I want to make more flash fiction submissions this year! I write so many pieces for my blog and I’d love to channel more energy into writing them for other publications instead – to try and get my work published elsewhere rather than just on my own little blog. But how would I fit that in with the fact that I’d also love to self-publish my own little book of limericks?

You see? A whole new year has arrived and I have no idea how to make the best of it! I don’t know what goals to set myself as I don’t know where my real (writing) priorities lie. But here’s a plan – this week I’ll do some kind of creative writing (whatever type leaps out at me), I’ll publish no more than one blog post between now and next Tuesday and I’ll take the time, now my older kids are back at school, to try and work out what I want to aim for this year.

And there’s one thing I’m certain of – no matter what form it takes, 2015 is going to be a year of writing.

Muddled Manuscript

What I’m Writing round-up

It’s the 5th of January and all around the country decorations are coming down and people are returning to work. Christmas is well and truly over so as I sit down to write December’s ‘What I’m Writing’ round-up it feels all wrong. December was so long ago! It was last year! And given that the last #WhatImWriting was on 16th December – before school broke up and festivities completely overtook everything – I feel like I’m trying to round-up things we all did and said in a previous life.

But that’s silly. Mid-December was only a few short weeks ago and actually, what better time to do do a round-up? To look backwards now before we all launch ourselves forwards again? So here goes:

typewriter butterflies round up

December was a great month for ‘What I’m Writing’ with a whole host of  great, inspiring, thought-provoking, sympathetic, sharing and encouraging posts, so thank you so much everyone who linked up. We also had two new linkers last month – Rachael from Honest Speaks and Dana from Writing at the Table – so a big welcome to them!

Last month certainly brought positivity with Reneé sharing exciting news of her book sales (she published Become the Best You at the end of November) having achieved #47 in the Amazon self help section – yippee! She also wrote of the support she received from the online community which was great to hear.

Meanwhile, Iona described a lovely experience she’d had when her young daughter read and gave feedback on the manuscript she’s writing, Carol had made excellent progress with her writing through a ‘no procrastination day’, and Sara was wondering – for the first time ever – about developing a short fictional piece into something longer . Exciting times!

As you’d expect from writers there was also a lot of pondering on all sorts of issues. Sophie wondered how to structure her novel which takes place in two distinct time periods, Morgan was considering giving up her novel to focus on her blog (we convinced her not to!) and Rachael asked ‘what makes a writer?’ – a really interesting debate!

There were creative struggles too: Chrissie wrote about her ‘confused muse’, a recent rejection inspired me to write my ‘ten top tips for overcoming rejection’ and Reneé wrote about the crash that came after her exciting book launch.  But such downs are a part of the writing life as Emily acknowledged in a post in which she interviewed Rachael Lucas (whose two books have been a huge success) about ‘The Highs and Lows of Writing’ – they happen to us all!

Despite the downs, ‘onwards and upwards’ was a definite theme with Emily and Sophie both researching their third books and Adria sharing the wonderful idea (about NaNoWriMo) that if you’ve been inspired and written anything, then you’ve won. Dana was also moving on with her writing and described her novel as a beloved albatross that was finally starting to take flight after literally being locked in a safe for five years! And in a very useful post Iona shared what she’d learnt at a recent conference about ‘getting published’ – motivation for us all.

Nikki wrote an incredibly moving post on ‘The Moment that Changed Everything’. It’s a stand alone post in terms of theme and so touching that I’m giving it it’s own paragraph. A powerful musing on awful moments where everything in life shifts.

As we moved towards the end of the year, there was a lot of reflecting on the year gone by and in the loved-up spirit of Christmas I wrote about how much the online writing community has meant to me this year. Sara was also reflective in a post that celebrated her blog’s second birthday and a year that she described as ‘all about writing’. Chrissie shared a very impressive spreadsheet of all the writing she’d done throughout the year (in a later post she also shared a blank spreadsheet that we can all download and use ourselves – thanks Chrissie!) and some impressive targets for next year.

Looking forward to 2015, Aimee shared the sad news that she was winding up her Pass the Gin blog… but for the great reason that she wants to concentrate on her writing, Carol shared an opportunity that was ‘stepping out of the wings’ for her to seize, and Chrissie wrote a great positive piece about how she’s going to take on this year. She channelled her daughter’s determination to go to a party to encourage us all not to fear rejection: ‘If you don’t ask about the party, you won’t get to go to the party’ – so true.

As I look forward to 2015 that sounds like a wonderful analogy for my writing intentions and goals – I hope we all spend 2015 asking about the party and that by the end of the year we’ve all donned our dancing shoes and are boogying away on the dance floor!

Happy New Year!

what I’m writing – week thirteen

typewriter butterflies badgeWelcome to week thirteen of ‘What I’m Writing’. It’s December! Is everyone feeling festive?I was going to attempt to put a little sprig of holy or santa hat on our badge but then I realised that could easily take me hours and therefore wasn’t worth it… but you’re all creative types so please go ahead and imagine something suitable. Done it? Excellent, thanks, good work!

Before we go any further I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who linked up (over at Muddled Manuscript) last week. I loved reading your posts as always. Thanks also to Chrissie for being an excellent host. I can never compete with the excellent linky posts she writes – mine are just cut and paste jobs… on which note, I’ll now commence the pasting:

If you’re new here you might be wondering what #WhatImWriting is all about. You can find all the details here but the short version is Chrissie and I are both writers who love blogging about our writing processes and reading about those of others. Our linky is for all you fellow writers, poets, bloggers etc. out there to share posts about what you’re writing (and all your hopes and fears, triumphs and tears) with a group of people who understand what you’re going through. September’s and October’s round-up posts (we take turns to write them every month) give you a flavour of the sorts of things we chat about.

We’d love you to join in and there are just a few suggestions (‘rules’ feels too strong a word) for taking part:

  • Link up any post (old or new) that is to do with writing/blogging etc. 
  • Please either use our badge on the post (copy and paste the HTML code below) or link to whichever one of our blogs is hosting that week. We will share your post on Twitter in return.
  • Read and comment on as many other posts in the linky as you can. What I’m Writing has developed a lovely, supportive community and we’d love you to join in :)
  • If you’d like to tweet your post feel free to use the hashtag #WhatImWriting. If you tweet us a link to your post @writingbubble or @rantybeast then we will RT.

Over to you – please link up below! I look forward to reading your posts (I’ll be linking up too of course)!

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something significant – #WhatImWriting

Northumbrian sunriseAnother Tuesday dawns… probably quite literally as this post is published (I’m scheduling it for 7am) unless, of course, the world has been swallowed up overnight by our evil alien overlords.

*Clears throat*

Aaaaaaanyway, it’s time for ‘What I’m Writing’! Chrissie is hosting this week so if you’re looking to link up please head over to Muddled Manuscript. There’s a fresh pot of tea on, and I’m pretty sure I heard something about biscuits…

So, to business! What have I been writing this week? Well, again I didn’t have much time (this last month has been manic) but I did manage a piece of flash fiction to link up to #ThePrompt last Friday. And that was on such a sad subject that I then asked the boys to set me a limerick challenge just to cheer things up! Apart from that I’ve spent a bit of time tinkering about with my picture books and that was it.

BUT NO, WAIT! I did do something significant! I submitted my first picture book manuscript to an agent! I know it’s not the world’s most amazing news but it’s one of those little things that feels quite big. I’ve put myself out there. Although I’ve submitted work to publications and competitions before I’ve never sent anything to an agent, so this is new territory. This is also the most passionate I’ve felt about any submission I’ve made. This little book matters to me. So yes. There you have it. Eeeek.

This week is set to be a quieter one so I’m looking forward to spending some time on my latest picture book. I’m also planning on doing a bit more blog-surfing for poetry and prose for my first Brit Mums post in early December. I’ve already got my eye on some (last week’s Prompt was full of fab pieces) and it should be fun to hunt out more.

I’m also going to spend some quality time with my family. I have a hunch my husband is rather sick of the sight of the back of my laptop and the sound of me tap tapping away! So we’re planning a trip to the cinema and out for a meal. We used to go to the cinema (just the two of us) a lot but since having kids it’s something that happens so rarely I tend to get very excited about it. Wheeeee!

Happy weeks, all!

Muddled Manuscript

what I’m writing – week eleven

typewriter butterflies badgeWelcome to week eleven of ‘What I’m Writing’! Once again, I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who linked up (over at Muddled Manuscript) last week. I loved reading your posts. Thanks also to Chrissie for hosting despite being the midst of a depressive episode – I’m impressed as always. I can never compete with the excellent linky posts she writes – mine are just cut and paste jobs… on which note, I’ll now commence the pasting:

If you’re new here you might be wondering what #WhatImWriting is all about. You can find all the details here but the short version is Chrissie and I are both writers who love blogging about our writing processes and reading about those of others. Our linky is for all you fellow writers, poets, bloggers etc. out there to share posts about what you’re writing (and all your hopes and fears, triumphs and tears) with a group of people who understand what you’re going through. September’s round-up post gives you a flavour of the sorts of things we chat about (and October’s round-up is on its way).

We’d love you to join in and there are just a few suggestions (‘rules’ feels too strong a word) for taking part:

  • Link up any post (old or new) that is to do with writing/blogging etc. 
  • Please either use our badge on the post (copy and paste the HTML code below) or link to whichever one of our blogs is hosting that week. We will share your post on Twitter in return.
  • Read and comment on as many other posts in the linky as you can. What I’m Writing has developed a lovely, supportive community and we’d love you to join in :)
  • If you’d like to tweet your post feel free to use the hashtag #WhatImWriting. If you tweet us a link to your post @writingbubble or @rantybeast then we will RT.

Over to you – please link up below! I look forward to reading your posts (I’ll be linking up too of course)!

Writing Bubble

 

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