The mind of a creative can be an amazing thing. Mine generally functions better when I am busy but every so often when I have the time I’ll take a step back from creativity. It is during these breaks that I grow the most. Experience and time served focusing on a craft has its obvious rewards but rest as a basic human necessity is vital to anyone looking to grow.
This year started busily with difficulty from external and internal issues for me. But like always, I found a way to overcome my obstacles and come out of a time that tested me to the limit. Reflection is fostered by time and to heal requires both. Coming back stronger than ever is my goal for this year when it comes to those external happenings. I’m going to do everything in my power to set right anything that wasn’t from last year. January and February are normally tricky for a lot of people and that includes me – I’ve got goals on my mind but I don’t want to burn out early.
Surviving is great but thriving is better and that is something I am aspiring to do this year. As always I’ll keep going, keep working and keep figuring myself out.
Book Reviews mean everything to authors, they help us grow and provide some all-important feedback that may even possibly shape our future works.
While being published may be a hobby for me, I still take it seriously and have aspirations of one day making it more. I appreciate every review I receive from my wonderful readers who have paved this author path for me.
Here is some recent praise for 3 of my works!
You can find out more about all of my books here.
Pursuing dreams matters to me. Pursuing things that make me happy also matters. Writing and telling stories has been something I’ve dreamt of doing longer than pretty much anything else so when I do write, it makes me happy. Above everything, doing things in life that make you happy matters the most.
As I am just about to finish drafting my latest writing project, I cannot help but feel pride for enduring and finding everything I can to nearly complete the journey. To me, every project is different but everything required to finish it always feels the same – there are struggles in some capacity every time and it is up to the story teller to overcome them. My inspirations come from many different corners of life and I do my best to express them in the words I lay out. Of course the editing process takes us away from the original intentions sometimes but that process is nearly always necessary to create a polished finished product.
This project in particular is a stage play that will be performed within a year – a very special outlet I am lucky to have. Guess I better get to finishing it…
And so the curtains fall on what has been an arduous but rewarding journey. It has taken an incredible amount of effort by so many to create a show that reflects hard work by those who shared my vision.
The Iver Heath Drama Club has spent over 70 years presenting shows to the local community and is a place where all are welcome – from audience to stage or technical and even the massive efforts of those behind the scenes. Having been a part of this fantastic drama club for over twelve years I’ve always felt valued and accepted by them. My writing journey has always been embraced by IHDC and their encouragement is a major factor in why I’m still writing. Their unique approach to accepting and including everyone is so important and something the club must always fight for. Community based theatre is a staple of providing entertainment and escape for everyone in the local community and IHDC does that very well.
For their latest pantomime effort I proudly took on the prestigious role of director, my first foray into managing a full-length show and a view that I’ll never forget. To see those words I’ve written performed by so many talented people will stay with me for a long time. Having already been the resident panto writer for some years this occasion the whole thing rested upon my shoulders representing a new type of pressure and of course pride for the journey. But like I said, I was not alone and I don’t really consider myself a director but IHDC made me feel like one and they took my vision and converted it into the bright colourful lights of theatre.
Audiences, performers and crew all went home happy which was my number one objective in all of this.
Successful shows are fostered by work and dedication along with the collaboration of so many talented folks who I am proud to call my friends. We did an incredible job together and so for now let us all retire to the green room.
Like always, the writing continues as I have already penned the first half of my next pantomime and IHDC will be going forth into their next production. With a number of scripts now written we will also be looking towards officially opening our very own script store. We have already had one customer in the form of another wonderful drama group who presented my adaptation of Rapunzel to great success!
You can find more information about IHDC via their Facebook Page.
A beautifully written continuation of a fantastic story about life and opportunity…
H.C. Helfand has delivered another fantastic and beautifully written story that see’s the continuation of Abigail Fischer’s journey and this second volume of the Arcadia Chronicles takes the reader on another wonderful ride and experience.
From the start, Abby and David have a lot on their plate, from unexpected plans to career aspirations while also maintaining their own farm not to mention the emergence of a long lost relative; straight away that familiar feeling from the first story began to creep in and remind me how likeable the two main characters are in this book – their love, their history and everything about them gives readers an urge to cheer for them. The title which I’ve now leaned from this book has a deep meaning that carries the theme which intertwines with family, drama, law, purpose and career aspirations while being wrapped up in that unique togetherness expressed between our two main characters. There is also a very important subject of mental health that highlights the importance of everyone having a right to freedom, no matter their health situation.
There is of course, some wonderful description in this book, and there are many quotes that struck me as poignant, meaningful and beautifully put. This story is about the drama of life and not necessarily where you are from, but where you are trying to go.
Some of my favourite quotes:
‘The mossy hills in the distance carpeted the barely clouded sky. A chickadee hovered over the cherry trees. Crickets in a choir rubbed their wings in song.’
‘Make the leap, Abby. You’ve done it before…’
‘Sometimes life gives opportunity at the most unexpected of times…’
‘I took my time walking toward the entrance. Rows of windows lined with shades stared at me. Some lowered; some rose. Were they winking? I shook the thought out of my mind…’
5 Stars – A book and series I’d highly recommend!
To see my writing performed live on stage is an incredible feeling. This past weekend was a pinnacle moment for my play writing endeavours and I’m still coming down from it all.
Two of my plays were performed by two different groups this past weekend and I had the pleasure to be able to see them both in action. One of which was for charity to raise money for a wonderful school and the other was the premiere of my latest work and a pantomime adaptation which I also directed.
Seeing my words come life is something that will stay with me forever and they may be my words, but the stories told on those stages belong to everyone else. From performers to crew all the way to kind audience members of all ages. To see it all unfold and hear the applause, gasps and so much more truly is special. Many many writers spent their time in obscurity with their works and never get the chance I got this past weekend. To watch how others interpret my stories and to also see them succeed on stage with different groups really does give me a sense that what I have written, does work.
Crossing $1000 in book royalties for the first time in a calendar year is a special and pinnacle moment for me. I’ve never been one to chase the money in my writing or content creating but as someone who aspires to do this some day as a primary occupation, it gives me hope. It also gives me a wonderful sense of value.
Running this deal like a functioning business might have once been a distant dream just a few years back but now, it might be a possibility eventually. This year in particular I have done my best to try and run book promotion advertising with a view of making the money back in sales. For the most part I have succeeded and although there are so many other ways to invest or measure success in this journey, getting a positive monetary outcome tells me that I might be on the right path.
Of course like all moments of success I have shared on social media, I have tried to share them with tact and inclusion because quite simply, if I can achieve these things then so can others. For all the things that social media is at the moment, sharing good moments and including others will always have an awesome outcome. People will always be drawn to moments of hope and I guess this is mine.
All I have ever done is kept working and kept going, now the rewards are starting to get bigger so I guess there is one thing I have to do and that is carry on.
Supporting fellow creatives in the online world is important to me. Social media and the wider internet in general is known as a volatile unregulated place sometimes and it isn’t always easy to navigate. That is without mentioning the feeling of invisibility no matter how hard one does try to be seen.
Giving someone a boost on social media doesn’t cost a thing and to me, a lot of the support I give doesn’t need to involve a monetary transaction. Kindness does not cost a thing along with manners and so taking that from the real world to the online one has been a no brainer for me. My motive stems from my own experiences as well as passion for consuming good stories and creativity. It takes a huge level of bravery to put anything creative out into the world and I know what that’s like to seemingly risk everything to do it.
The majority of my success has come from being known for supporting others while also never giving in and always thinking of new ways to connect with others. I once tried to be all sales all the time and found that making personal connections with others to be way more rewarding and meaningful – they also drive my sales, follows, reviews and further connections without really intending to.
Over some years I have discovered some incredible books and writers. Their work has kept me going and fostered my own creativity to keep writing and keep aiming to get better. Supporting others takes many forms and as long as you respect boundaries, it can be very rewarding to see others succeed because that drives hope for everyone.
September is always a marquee month on my author calendar. Its normally the time I realise the year is kind of slipping away whilst also being the anniversary of being published.
Open Evening turns 6 this year and the day before that milestone it will hopefully be elevated to a BookBub size audience as it will be featured by them on that exact day. It can be funny and strange how things work out because there I was looking to launch Book 8 this month quietly with a view to promote later and the advertising deal of my career literally lands in my lap.
Darke Apocalypse has the potential now to be my most successful launch ever as it will be most likely riding the coattails of Open Evening’s Featured Deal just days after. Its part fate, part right time part probably luck but I have always somehow managed to position myself for the right amount of shine.
For all the wonderful things this journey has brought me, the best is probably yet to come.
Good things takes time. Even better things take even more time and time is something that passes without realizing whilst you’re chasing those good things.
In less than a month, I’ll be an eight time published author. Something I’d only really dream of when this blog first opened its doors to providing the world information and me a writing outlet. Now, things are looking good and time has been one of my best friends. From spending it figuring out social media to carve thousands of followers, to honing my writing craft. I’m not sure that I’ve ever become a better writer, but I’m definitely more efficient with words – everything else is for the readers to judge and speaking of reviews, that is yet another great thing that comes with time and patience.
There are a lot of creatives out there, social media has brought us closer and perhaps into a golden age of stuff, stuff that is out there for anyone and everyone. It takes time to find an audience, hone a craft and chase dreams, but eventually anything is possible over time.
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