My new Book is complete

Now before I and at least one person who reads this gets carried away, let’s just say those two words are always written ironically the first time around. I know more than most that a writer’s work never really ends.

Yesterday I overcame odds which seemed to pile up around me back in April. Back then my story seemed to have no way out, it felt boring and lacklustre. Amongst the few cool concepts there was just no way I could continue this and get a book out of it. It even made me a tad angry.

Now that’s all in the process of creativity, I have learned. Especially this time around. Ever since I dropped my previous robot crime futuristic project I have tried to write in a way where I am not attached emotionally to the narrative.

Yes, anything I write means a lot to me, but the stuff I am now writing leaves me willing to chuck it all towards the publishing fire and spend it on building a readership. This doesn’t mean the product will lack in quality, there is just less emotion on the line if it fails.

My arrival as an independent author is important and imminent. Tomorrow will see the final performance of my first written and directed play by Iver Heath Drama club. A beta arrival if you say where my work and voice can hopefully be seen, all portrayed by some wonderful performers.

first drafts...

Back track to last year and Open Evening was born, a soon to be published debut novel by me which I am ever so proud to bring out. After finishing that and organisation of the publication I had a great energy to see if I could do another. Not a sequel but another stand-alone book in the genre of mystery and thriller (there will be more about it very soon). By the turn of this year my efforts were well under way for this next story and everything became apparent.

With the balance of shift working and trying to write amongst a social life that tended to decline slightly, my back was firmly against the wall. Consideration must be taken into account as I had very few plot or themes to work with. This book was the child of spontaneity. I planned badly and tried to rely on the Open Evening formula, that being a story which I have seen a thousand times which poured onto the page. This next project not so much, in fact this has been my longest draft to date, just shy of 7 months.

Only my experience and dedication alone got me out of this project in one piece and still my record for starting a project and completing it remains, just about. Next I shall be taking a week or so off writing. Then my attention turns to the final edit of Open Evening, just in time for it to go towards Satin Publishing and then to my readers.

As I said a writer’s work is never done.

Oh and one other thing, my next book is called Darke Blood!

My #YearOfWriting Continues…..

 

 

Reflections of a writer director

I write this current blog entry after what has been a pretty damn disheartening week for me. Before I spend words moaning at life being hard and all I would like to say that this piece isn’t directed at anyone personally other than myself.
Although it would be easy to use social media as a vessel for sending subliminal messages I am very much an adult and won’t do such things. More over I would rather use this blog page as a way of just venting my current feelings and mood towards things.
First off let me just talk about my writing situation, this is a blog so nobody can interrupt, basically shut up and listen.

Since November I switched departments at work in order to chase better opportunities and more money.  Doing so meant that I no longer work Monday to Friday with weekends off. My work pattern is rather sporadic at best and gives no real stable routine. Something which my writing thrives under, or used to anyway. Gone are the days where I could come home and begin writing at six all the way through to half ten at night. Those times where I really learnt my craft and I look back on them as one great lesson in penning words.
Now my time is way more valuable, not only for me to write but to spend time with my nearest and dearest and of course to actually sleep. Saying that my writing in the past five months has reached a rather diabolically slow pace. If I am completely honest the current book I am trying to draft is a complete and utter shambles. Some of you are probably saying really is it that bad? My angle is that I don’t want to sell a shitty book, which is what it currently is.

Maybe I have just taken it a bridge too far especially after the last book I drafted literally flowed like water and in a matter of months it was done. Foolishly I thought maybe I could repeat that again by just going with a few loose plot points and deciding the take it from there. Perhaps an arrogant approach from me.

There seems to be a complete lack of inspiration for me right now which is holding my creativity down below the surface of rather stormy waters. Maybe in the books I have previously written I was just lucky to have the story already there, but with this project is just a brick wall. It’s frustrating as hell because I want this so damn much and there is some awesome points that this story could shine with.

Only if I can unlock the links between these few great moments is becoming an ever such a hard task.
More than once have I almost walked away from this project, but a very deep need to succeed and get it done is holding me onto it. Somewhere my inspiration lies, but where I still haven’t found out.  I don’t watch much tv these days which is one of my many vessels of inspiration for ideas, lets face it, UK Netflix sucks a big dong.

It’s been over a week since I even looked at the book I am trying to write and as that time increases it fills me with zero remorse for walking away. We’ll see.
To add to my already frustration and lack of writing inspiration for the new book, this week I was forced to make a decision which has caused my conscience to remain a little unsettled. Being a first time writer director of a play so far has been one of the most rewarding things I have ever done in life but saying that, this week I had to make a rather difficult decision. Maybe it has even cut a friendship from my life, I do hope that isn’t the case.

Things were pushed a little too far in my mind and action had to be taken, deep down I feel a little remorse but the in the long run if I want something to be successful sometimes a small sacrifice is worth the reward. I will do anything to ensure my writing isn’t put at jeopardy and the fantastic cast I have, my team which I cannot let down. Making this decision truly is best for business, but where do friends come in business. Only time will take its course for me to know that.

Until then I will try to throw myself back into writing a book which my heart really isn’t in. Maybe that’s a subliminal method approach seeing as it’s about vampires.

My writing heads to the stage

And so the dust begins to settle after a rip roaring successful run of pantomine shows for my dear Iver Heath drama club. The time has come to ask what happens next?

Well to answer that question would suggest that a new era for me and the club is on the horizon. I say new era because since I have had involvement with this growing community drama club the depth and wealth of talented and helpful people has grown immensely.

Some very loyal followers will know that a few years ago in between drafting books I took a little time out to pen a single act comedy play.

imageHotel dOOM was born! Inspired by the variety of talented personas I share the stage with my characters came to life on the page. Driven by quick to and fro gags with witty humour the play soon took shape. From what appears by name to be something along the lines of horror actually unfolded into a barrage of silliness. There’s mystery, intrigue, innuendo and screams a plenty. Something even the most humour detached will find something to at least smirk about (I hope).

But that’s the ultimate challenge with writing a play. Not only will I be watching the characters I have written face the third dimension, I will also be watching the audience and how they react. Maybe seeing how the audience do react when seeing my writing in action will answer the ultimate question for me.

Can I write?

A very personal question to me that can only be answered by the cast I put on stage to say those lines and be those characters. It is a very self centred question to be seeking an answer for but that isn’t the only thing I am looking for. In the nearly seventy year history of Iver Heath drama club it is believed no one has ever written their own material. Again a self centred feat or with the help of my friends a brilliant achievement for all of us.

Either way to see what I have created from just a simple idea to full on ensemble play in the living flesh is something I am incredibly excited about. To make someone laugh is to live and for me living is telling meaningful stories. That is all I have ever wanted to do. Just hearing the lines read out of the past few weeks has been exciting and the group I have in mind to play these parts are perfect.

Even with my show being directed by me there is also a youth offering for some very talented and awesome kids who some day will find their way into the highest billing for pantomine and summer shows.

Casting for hotel dOOM is this Wednesday and so my #YearOfWriting begins its next chapter. On the horizon of course is my first book Open Evening which arrives at the end of September.

My final note will be to thank my wonderful followers of this blog. Over the weekend my hall of information crossed over 60 followers. Thank you to all.

 

Battling the After Show Blues

Where do we go from here? For many of my dear friends this is the question they will be facing right now. Some will handle it better than others whilst some will find ways to distract themselves from after show blues.

From bright lights and audience gratification to a level of isolation. Now that is a culture shock to everyone who had involvement with Iver Heath Drama Club’s shows over these past two weekends (and for any other amateur dramatic). Whilst many including me are saying this may have been our best offering ever, that’s lovely but for us after that curtain has fallen for the final time so has the personas that made up such a good show. We say those lines for the last time and we do that dance once more.

Life for the amateur dramatic is of extreme highs on occasion followed by a somewhat even more extreme low. We can wallow and ponder about it for as long as we like but that isn’t the long term solution. Moving on is!

Many of my wonderful followers will know that over the past few months I have been planting many seeds that will hopefully grow over the course of this year, my #YearOfWriting.

The first book Open Evening arrives in just over half a year but before that my writing aptitude gets its greatest and hardest challenge yet. The next adult play for Iver Heath Drama Club has been written by me and will also be directed by yours truly. It’s a rather daunting task considering Hotel Doom, my play is a one act comedy and hopefully people will laugh. After all this time, my writing will be given another dimension by the wonderful performers of the drama club. It may be worth mentioning that according to the club’s 60 plus year history nobody has ever written and directed a play from scratch.

A lot is to happen from now and curtain up of Hotel doom. Much like more is to happen before my first book hits the shelves, but that’s the beauty and thrill of life to me. Not knowing what will happen is something we should all embrace as the unexpected is what we must cling onto so we can make our future what we want it to be. Without sounding too motivational speaker on you all I have found the unexpected to be the place where all my greatest success come from.

So where do we go from here? Into the unknown with every hope something wonderful could emerge at any moment. That is how I get myself out of that black hole of after show blues. We did it and it was awesome. Our memories of the stuff much of the audience don’t see will be what we share as memories. We did this as a team and through the fire we went and out to the other side.

I would like to take this opportunity now to thank everyone who has supported me with my writing and my book announcement last month.

And last but by no means least I would like to thank my drama club family IHDC for this wonderful journey we have been on together. It means the world to me even though sometimes I do moan. The depth and variety of wonderful personalities we have is something that should be celebrated and credited. The best thing we do it what we do together.

A special mention to my good friend Matt Streuli who works ever so hard in publicising the drama club and hopefully someday soon an OBE will be coming his way. In his words and after reading this ‘Get back to work!’ He also has a page on facebook that you should like. 

That’s it for this week. Hopefully my lacking of blog posts will stop from now and the cobwebs have been fully shaken off.

 

New Year Same Momentum

Like everyone else I am going to say that 2016 is here! It does seem like quite a while since my last entry as I decided not to review 2015 simply because I didn’t fancy recycling old posts and linking them. It’s boring to me if you are recycling old crap and shoving it towards loyal readers. Saying that 2016 and 2015 are just both numbers to me. For many it’s a clean slate to start things again, for the Chinese it probably doesn’t mean a lot and for me well I actually count my years via my birthday.

Momentum is something I want to briefly talk about as I have been gaining a lot of it since my year started back in august. I hope to carry that momentum into this year. Open Evening my latest project ( young adult in genre) has been written, edited, edited again by myself and now it is in the stage of organising a professional edit. I have envisioned the release to be around September time, hopefully.

Whilst that is in motion of back and forth emails I have taken steps towards drafting another project. I won’t reveal any more details other than that as I am still unsure at this stage if it will go any further than the 800 words currently drafted.

Over the festive break I had the pleasure of going to the cinema and yes you guessed right it involved jedi Knights and Storm troopers.

ar wars

Star Wars: the force awakens was a fantastic few hours spent and well worth the over priced popcorn and beverages. As an audience we are introduced to a group of new characters who will later become the heroes much like the original trilogy. We are then re introduced to some favourite characters who then interact with the new. Simply put, this film is a re introduction of star wars for the generations who haven’t had the chance to see it on the big screen and just as important, a carrying on of the original story. One top thing I have heard about this film is mainly from people who are strangers to the Star Wars universe and they themselves say its good, so I recommend it. The force is definitely awake and has out shone the prequels to say the least. I would even argue that this is the best Star Wars offering yet.

 

Moving on, the beginning of a new calendar year means one thing for me and group of talented performers. That’s right, Iver Heath Drama Club are back on stage this month for their annual pantomine show Dick Whittington.

Ticket sales are doing well but could be better, so if you are in the UK and can get to greater London then I suggest you come and see me in a show! Tickets are available online here. You will catch me working alongside fellow blogger Matt Streuli who is the resident dame and chairman of IHDC. A lot of voluntary hard work goes into these performances and it shows when the curtain finally comes up.

Year of writing

My final note will be about the campaign I began late last year called #YearOfWriting . Basically using this hashtag will group all of my stuff together on social media platforms so go ahead and use it when sharing my stuff, that’s if you do share my stuff. Anyway thanks for reading, drop me a comment sometime, share my stuff and thanks to old and new followers. Here’s to a productive new year filled with success and good things.

 

dick

100 Days until the UK General Election : A somewhat humorous Guide

Yes folks it’s that time again for some of us to express our democratic right and have some part in choosing the next person we can all blame for not having any money and other stuff.

It seems this year the election is wide open, as opposed to normally being a two horse race between team red and team blue. Last time saw the emergence of team yellow and Nick Clegg shortly followed by his demise, quicker than a student can drop a fire extinguisher from a building.

Come with me as I take a brief look at the top political parties looking to gain some ground in the 2015 UK general election.

all parties

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Conservative (current champions, only because Nick Clegg’s Liberal party shared his votes with them so they could form a coalition government)

Headed by our prime minister David Cameron, he will be looking for an outright victory this time round, but honestly I really cant say what’s gonna happen (like I know). It will be interesting what he has to say when the live television debates happen. Hopefully he will be more prepared than the prank caller was.

titand

Liberal Democrats

Clegg’s team will be looking to scrape back some level of respect after his u turn on student fees. Doubt that will happen.

(I am trying to do the right thing here and insult every party, that way everyone is cared about)

Labour

Ed Miliband is the man for Labour, I just don’t know If labour is for him. Like the two above parties they are all considered as the top 3 (well they are statistically) but the parties below will be challenging them. This time it could even be serious. So Labour may loose more than they have gained in recent times.

SNP – Scottish National Party

Only contending for seats in Scotland they have gained much ground in recent times. Especially after the referendum last year. If they win out right in Scotland they will hop over team Clegg and become the 3rd biggest party in the UK. Good luck to them, especially after the no vote for independence so perhaps this shift could help change things. (Ok notice I didn’t add an insult here, so I will just say this, I have never tried Haggis)

BNP – British National Party

Seriously? No.

UKIP- UK independence party

Armed with a leader who spends much time in a pub and a face only fit for punching Nigel Farage will be looking to steal votes from the power 3. Will he steal enough to get into downing street? Doubtful, are we worried? Yes. UKIP could be the deciding factor as to who will win.

farge

Look’s like somebody did punch him!

 

The Green Party

There are three chapters of the greens, one for Ireland, one for Scotland, then England and Wales. Another popular choice for those looking at the polling card and saying ‘None of these please’. They currently run the coastal district of Brighton. Could we see them take more places?

Plaid Cymru

Welsh party who co ordinate with SNP. Last time around they came 4th on their home soil.

 

So that’s the guide, who are you voting for? Or like me you are waiting for the politicians to make arses of themselves on the televised debates. Of course this is or UK residents only but if you could vote who would it be for? Check out a podcast I am in all this year for exclusive election coverage! And remember I have a competition running, scroll down! A grand total of 0 entries so far! Rock and Roll!!!

house

 A final note from the Hall of information 

This weekend and next I am performing in Iver Heath Drama Club’s annual pantomine; Robin Hood and the babes in the woods! Yes ladies I am Robin Hood and will be wearing those tights, come and see me and many more talented people who put together this awesome show. For tickets click here, for more info click here.

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