Week 14/52 Writing Update: Achievement Get: Procrastination

So. I’ll be honest. I haven’t really worked much on my camp nanowrimo project this week.

I’ve rewritten about 4k words and I’ve played Far Cry 5.

I been out exploring the fields of Montana! And taking down a doomsday cult and all the rest!

It’s not much of a surprise really. I knew it was going to happen and I’m kind of just accepting that.

For the week to come, I don’t know how the writing thing is gonna go. I’ve finished Far Cry – so I don’t really have all that good of an excuse.

I do have some extra hours at work though, and, as much as I think that I’ll be able to sit and get some words down whilst I’m there, my boss loves to give me the things to do that the people I’m covering never do. Because they lazy.

But, thats a rant for another day. At least I don’t get bored. I just die of dust inhalation instead.

If anything this week, I should find time to read! (I got like eight new books from the books fair, so I definitely need to start putting a dent in my TBR shelf).

This doesn’t include the ones I put aside to read for the 25in5 readathon that I just never started, and the two new books being delivered today! Although, one’s a game guide and the other is just novella size so that’s not too bad.

As long as I can get in to the groove of reading, I’ll be fine, but then, it means the groove of writing falls away….

Although, this week, I did finish beta-reading one of the manuscripts I have, and now, all I have to do is finish filling in the survey. And, I have the second part of another that I can finally get in to as well! So that will be fun!

I also have at least one other blog post planned for this week, and it will most likely be me rambling on about Far Cry 5, giving all the spoilers and figuring out if I can make my antagonist just as great as theirs are!

Anyhuw, I hope any of my fellow campers and non-campers have had a slightly better writing time than me!

Until next time,

Just Keep Writing,

Jade x

Week 12/52 Writing Update: Or Life Update More Like

So, surprise, surprise, I haven’t done much writing this week…

And, if you read my last weeks writing update, you’d know that my laptop died a death and things got lost, and I was sad.

And, this last week, I’ve also had crazy shifts. Like, start at 4am, finish at 7pm, go home, have tea and go to bed…

(Me and my mum also saved an abandoned baby cactus! We’re hoping that he survives his transition in to a new pot at the moment! Fingers crossed)

I have been getting some reading in though!

I started reading the Divergent series! Book 1 was read in two days, and book 2 was read in two days as well, and I’ve just started reading book 3!

I’ve also beta-read some too! Perhaps not in the way I planned too – I usually like to add little comments as I go along, but neither my phone or tablet let that happen, so I’ve had to just write it out in an essay type form!

For this week to come, I don’t see much writing happening at all!

There will be some blog posts though! I’m going to Chester Zoo and a Fall Out Boy concert, so I’m bound to get some inspiration from them to write a few words for you guys. And, if not, I have some already prepared that I can throw out there if need be!

And, on Saturday, I’ll be turning twenty-four too! Let the birthday week commence!

What are you up to this week?

Until then though guys,

Just Keep Writing,

Jade x


This is my newest aesthetics board for Tales of Monsters and I just thought I’d show it off here too cause I like it so much!

I’m Just Practicing…

So, I have this thing right. It’s kind of embarrassing, but no one see’s me when I’m sat on the toilet doing it, so it doesn’t matter.

I think most writers probably do this actually; whether your sat on the toilet, in the shower, in bed or looking at yourself in the mirror (or wherever you want really); and thats interview themselves (I hope other writes do this anyway, if not, just click off and act as if this post never exsisted) on the things they’ve written, whether fictional or not, and I do this all the time.

Perhaps it could be seen as self-indulgent, a bit over-dramatic, probably weird, and I should look as if my head is so big, it wouldn’t be able to get through the door.

But, isn’t that the dream?

As a writer, you want to be asked about your writing, your characters, your messages, your way of thinking, you want to be able to do something that no one else hasn’t.

And, what’s the harm in putting a bit of practice in?

And, again, just from telling my imaginary interviewer, being able to say the words out loud (or in a quiet mumbly sort of way because I’m sat in the toilets at work), I was able to think things through and even develop my plot that little bit more! I even figured out some finale details as I talked about how I felt about it all!

So, I guess, that really, what I’m asking is, does anyone else do this too?

Until then though,

Just Keep Writing,

Jade

Week 11/52 Writing Update: Just Keep Writing

So, this week, it started off great! I got through writing a scene that was really hard to write – in the sense that it finally actually made sense – and then my laptop died, and I lost it all…

So, now, I have no laptop, no current draft, and I cried…

The worst thing was, I was essentially fine with Tales of Monsters – which won’t be going out to beta-readers this month now – because I knew I had some sort of old draft saved on a memory stick, and I do have the printed version before the current in a file in my bedroom, but damn, if I had actually lost my nanowrimo project from 2017, I would never be able to pull myself to write it ever again.

Melanie and Al would just be two characters that got lost in the inter webs and never seen again.

But, alas, the genius that I am – only sometimes (probably less than sometimes) decided that I would save it on my memory stick on the 19/11/2017. The day I actually finished writing it.

Although, for all I know, the file might be corrupted because my mums laptop won’t open it…

I’m hoping though, if anything, the place I’m gonna phone tomorrow will be able to save it – and the obvious hundreds of photos I might never see again…

So, yeah, great week, even had a nandos, even read John Greens Paper Towns, it even snowed again (yay), but yeah, it didn’t end too well.

So, this week will either include me rewriting said draft on this tablet I write on now or, continuing my current draft on my laptop which hopefully gets fixed some time this week; or I have to buy a new laptop and hope that if they can’t fix it, they can atleast save my hardrive.

I think, if anything, a new laptop is on the cards, but when that will happen, I don’t know.

If anything though, it has just assured me even more that this writing thing is definitely what I want do – because the doubts lately have been a bit too much – but now I’m sure.

Thankfully, I have some blog posts all ready to go! Their just bookish unboxings, but, their both fun and I might throw in this book review I’ve been meaning to finish and publish – which will go great with my little beta-reader series because it’s one I beta-read!

What kind of blog posts are you planning this week? I’d love to hear about them!

But, until then guys,

Just Keep Writing,

Jade x

P.S. Neither my phone or tablet tells me of my spelling mistakes so please forgive me if there are any!

Week 10/52 Writing Update & Adding More Layers

So, this past week, it’s consisted of me writing up an extra chapter, adding some more bones to a character, finishing off a few more chapters for my beta document and writing up a bit of my beta survey!

I also had the chance to dive in to my main characters moms! The challenge #MYMCSMOM was something that both me and my friend, Andrew Henley, popped together at the beginning of the week! It was a great way for me to learn more about Lauryns mum, Willow, from my current WIP Tales of Monsters, and Mels mum, Jackie from my NaNoWriMo project ‘Diary of a Child Zombie Killer’, as well as allowing a platform for others to do the same!

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Check out the #MYMCSMOM tag on instagram if you want to check out all the entries!

The challenge also allowed me to add a bit more depth to my story line – particularly with Tales of Monsters – and made some things a lot easier to understand.

It still sort of scares me though; the layers that this fantasy series might end up with! It might not live up to the whole complicated world that is Game of Thrones, but you know what, it might actually come close when it’s all finished and polished.

Diaries won’t be nearly as layered – its much more straight forward, Mel’s mum, Jackie, still surprised me a little! Mels mum, being a zombie for more time than we actually see her alive means that she doesn’t have that big of an impact on Mels story-driven-life (in a certain way), and I think the fact that Mels mum was always working anyway, and that her dad was Mels main care-giver, that not having her mum wasn’t that much of a big deal?

Or maybe, it was easier for her to adjust to the aspect – although, she does miss being taken cared off – but what kid wouldn’t? (Hell, what adult doesn’t every now and then?)

Concerning my beta-reader survey too, I also came across a load of helpful questions that you should ask critique partners, or readers of your manuscript, like it’s no one’s business! They’ve been absolutely everywhere on my IG feed, and I’ve even come across a few on wordpress without even looking for them!

I’ve picked out a few thatI think I’m gonna end up using for my more general questions, and then, I have a whole page in my bujo of things more specific and ‘spoilery’!

I’m really hoping to document my whole beta-reading process, for both myself and anyone who’s interested in knowing about it, and I’ll be sure to write up a blog post on the process of writing up a beta-survey once mines done (and whether it actually works the way I want it to).

Despite all this, half way through the week, it was looking very bleak! I thought it was going to be a little bit of a bust – I had only got that extra chapter written by the weekend, plus the MC’s mom challenge in action, and I’d been working too much to even comprehend doing much more than sleeping and eating!

However, I’m quite a ways in to beta-reading part one of a nordic fantasy novel for someone on insta, and I managed to get out three blog posts too!

And then, after a very busy Saturday morning, and mostly a lay-about evening feeling a little sick, I managed to do some writing! Followed by Sunday, and after work and a beef dinner, and one of those food coma naps, I woke up and did some more writing!

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So, in all, the weekend sort of made up for all the crazy and got me that bit closer to sending out my manuscript to beta-readers!

For this coming week, I’m planning my usual Wednesday blog post, with maybe an extra on Friday if it all works out! But, I’m also planning a week-long series of blog posts – most probably for April when I’m not obsessing over Tales of Monsters anymore, but only time will tell for that one!

What are your plans for this week?

To finish this weekly update off, I’m gonna leave you guys here with my favourite quote from my writing this last week:

‘But to allow smaller men than you to take the applause, will only result in smaller men taking the lead’

Until next time guys,

Just Keep Writing,

Jade x

#MyCharactersAreReal Tag Part 5: The Reader of a Child Zombie Killers Diary

So, to finish off this tag, I’ve decided to group the whole of the questions in to one blog post and tell you all about the reader of Mel’s diary – Albert!

To check out Melanies four-part character development series, click here to start at part one!

Abert (or Al) is my second protagonist from my NaNoWriMo 2017 Project ‘The Diary of A Child Zombie Killer’ – and if you need a small recap on what it was all about, check it out below!

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Set in a zombie apocalyptic Britain, a forty-year old guy called Al finds the diary of the twelve-year-old Melanie. Inside, it documents the beginning of the apocalypse and the world she experiences. He doesn’t want it to ever finish; but he can see the un-penned, blank pages at the end. Did she decide she didn’t need it? Did she lose it? Or did she die…

My Main Character:

A forty-year old called Albert (or Al).

Their Backstory:

Al lived with his wife and daughter, and short of being a very important buisness man in his earlier years, he’s now a proud house husband who cooks the dinners, does the washing and make sure his daughter get’s to school on time! His wife is part of a team of scientists, who may or may not have started the zombie apocalypse in the first place.

What Does Your Main Character Value?

Above all else, he values family and friends. Which he doesn’t have many off at any point in his life, but, still, he wouldn’t be without them.

What is Your Characters Most Valuable Trait?

Al is very reasonable when he needs to be. He can quite easy diffuse stupid confrontations and dilemmas, and is definitely someone you can go to if you want some hard-truths.

If Your Character was one of the Deadly Seven Sins, Which one Would They be?

This is a hard one, but he would have probably been Gluttony before the apocalypse started. He really does love his food, and even now, he’s more likely to eat a chocolate bar he finds than give it to his daughter.

What Makes Your Character Relatable?

Al’s absolutely terrified of what the world will do to him if he lets it. He feels like he often has no idea what he’s doing, and the lack of control easily makes him go mad!

What Does Your Character Consider Immoral?

Murder. Although he has killed live people before, he thinks it’s completely immoral and shouldn’t ever be done.

And What Moral Might Your Character Excuse or Sidestep?

Betrayal. But, only because, the world they live in, people are going to focus on themselves and the people they love before anyone else, and how can you hold that against them.

Who Does Your Character Love More Than Anything or Anybody?

Al loves his daughter – Josie.

Who Gets Under Your Characters Skin?

Josie! She’s growing up and being a typical teenager who whines and moans when she doesn’t get what she wants..

Who or What Could Break Your Character (even if it doesn’t happen in your book)

Being alone would end up killing him. He’d hate to lose his daughter, or to be bitten by a zombie, but being alone would break him in to pieces you could not fix.

Who or What is a Bad Influence on Your Character?

His apocalypse-born best friend, Rhys, is the baddest influence of all! He encourages Al to let loose a little bit, and, gives him a chance to be the immature bachelor he never got to be!

Is Your Character the One to Instigate the Fight, Break it up or Stand Back?

With his reasonability, Al is most likely going to be the one who breaks up a fight.

When Someone First Meets Your Character, What do They Think of Them?

From looking at him, he looks old and cold. And, very stand-offish, but he’s quite soft and kind, and deep down, a good guy.

What Does Your Character Look for in an Ally or Friend?

Like Mel, he looks for trust! It’s now one of the most important things that you can hold on to.

What Would be on Your Main Characters Bucket List?

Al has always wanted to live in a house where one of the rooms is lined with book cases, preferably filled with memoirs!

He also wanted to be a milk man when he was little!

What are Your Characters Emotional Strengths and Weaknesses?

Strengths

He’s been through a lot, and he’s very street-wise!

Weakness’

Al finds very easy to get anxious and depressed, and in turn, turn in to a very moany and sulky person.

What are you Characters Physical Strengths and Weaknesses?

Strengths

Al is quite strong, thanks to all the fat he once had from his over-eating that turned to muscle because of all the running and carrying he does!

Weakness’

Al finds it really hard to climb. If it wasn’t for Rhys having the strength to pull him up over walls and on to the top of bins, he would probably be dead by now. It’s not that he’s not strong enough to do it, he’s just scared of heights and the fear of it effects him a lot more than he’d like to admit!

What Does Your Character do When They’re Upset?

Al will read when he’s upset – which means he’s able to read Mel’s diary quite quickly as a lot of horrible things start to happen between the time he finds it, and the time he finishes.

Special Skills and/or Weapon of Choice?

Al loves his shovels and spades! He has an old rusty one that he keeps near his bed, just in case, but is always on the look out for a nice, non-rusted one that perhaps someone left in a shed and forgot about.

Still not found one yet, but he’s still hoping!

What is Your Character’s Greatest Fear?

The same thing that would break him – being alone!

Significant Objects or Symbols for Your Character?

Melanie’s Diary! Obviously!

And, a swiss army ruck sack that he found early on in the apocalypse and carries around with him everywhere!

Nervous Habits or Ticks?

When he’s nervous, Al scratches at his ear. Not many people notice it, but Rhys does! And, uses it to make sure that his friend stays calm, and helps him get through it without letting him know that he knows.

Do They Immediately Say Whats on Their Mind or Put Their Thoughts Through a Filter?

Al can be very rash, and sometimes, he just doesn’t think before he says things. It can get him in trouble, but, it can also get him out of a lot of trouble too!

What Does it Take to Tick Them Off?

Stragglers and bums! Al really detests people who sit on their arses and don’t do anything, and in the apocalyptic world, bums are even more noticeable, but, half the time, their the ones that get killed first, much to the guilty pressure of Al!

However, stragglers also annoy the hell out of him. In this world, you can’t be slow, but, he does make exceptions. If he didn’t, he wouldn’t have his best friend Rhys, and, he wouldn’t have his wise old man Patrick!

In Most Situations if Your Character Passive, Aggressive or Defensive?

Al has always been very defensive, but, not always in a judgmental, defend his honor kind of way. He’s defensive in the way that he would only fight back if the need arose – which includes risk to his life, and risk to the lives of his group.

On a Scale of One to Ten, How Patient is Your Character?

Al ranges about six out of ten on the patient scale! Not too great at all, but still, he can hold it back a bit more than some people!

In What Ways Could Your Character Grow as a Person?

Take a few more risks, and be a bit more immature before the world takes his life away.

What Does Your Character Learn by The End of The Story?

He learns to face his fears for the ones he loves.

And maybe he also dies, just like Melanie. Or maybe they meet up and become a super-group.. Or maybe he turns in to a zombie. Maybe I have no idea what happens to him…

This is just a little aesthetic board that I created for Al! I think it sums him up perfectly!


And, I’m hoping to start posting a bit more! It won’t be every day, but perhaps every two days, you’ll have something new to read on my blog if you wish too!

So, until next time guys,

Just Keep Writing,

Jade x

FOB, Beta-Reading and Camp NaNo Prep (February Wrap-up & March Goals)

So, we’re on that cusp guys. The cusp between the Winter (which by the looks of it doesn’t want to leave) and the Spring (I have already heard the baby birds in a roost above my window), and, it’s also, already the beginning of the third month of the year!

Like, how did that even happen? This year is going far too quickly for my liking! But, I guess it should just make you all that more determined to get your goals done early, right?

Speakinf of goals! Before I looked at my goal list from the start of February, I felt like half of the goals I set myself didn’t get done! But, to my surprise, I only had six, and to be honest, I haven’t done all that terrible!

  1. Continue trucking on with the re-write of Tales of Monsters – Check!
  2. Keep reading – Well, a little
  3. Keep up with the double blog posts (and bujo) – Well done me!
  4. Buy Far Cry 5 and play it – Haha
  5. Participate in three insta challenges this month – One and a half!
  6. Start DIY Double Decker Hamster Home – Nope…

The writings been going okay. It went really slow at the beginning, but then I found some sort of spurt and went back in to old-time rereading editing, rather than rewriting it! I’m not in the right mindset, and most of it makes sense. It still needs a few things added here and there, but, it’s good.

So, yeah, I’m slowly getting through to the last chapters now – there’s a couple that need to change (almost completely, after I’ve already re-written them) but, if they are changed, it gives book two a better chance at going the way it’s going, but, we’ll just see how all that pans out in the end.

And, that reading thing?

Well, other than reading Until You Are Mine by D.M.Davis, and some short stories from Grimm Brothers Book of Fairytales, I haven’t read much else ither than blog and instagram posts!

I must have read myself out in January or something! Poor Crooked Kingdoms been sat there on my bedside DVD locker, gathering dust for a whole month… It happened with Six Of Crows as well though, it was just so easy to put down and not pick up for the longest of times, but I’d still give it a 4.5*! I liked the characters, and the whole concept, I think it just lacked in the hype somewhere!

What has been good though, is other than the Grimm Brothers Book of Fairytales which I couldn’t let go for £4.95 at the charity shop, and a Tyrion Lannister quote book that I got for a pound in a clearance sale, (plus two 99p ebooks) I haven’t bought tons of books this month!

My TBR has not grown, at all! And I’m quite pleased with myself!

I kept up with my double blog posts and my bullet journal, which is the one thing I’m most surprised at! I really thought that bujoing would turn in to a one trick kinf of pony -it usually does – but nope, managed to keep it going, so, go me!

I also kept up with some instagram challenges, particularly the #HayleySoonChallenge, and I did half of the #CharactersInLove challenge! I’ve also posted a few #FaveLineFebs on my current WIP and added one of those story highlights to keep them all together – Now, that was fun!

And, let’s just say, it’s pretty obvious that no one game savvy (or at least a FarCry lover) reads these posts because I didn’t realise that it didn’t come out until the 28th March…

And that great idea of the DIY Hamster cage was also put on hold! I lost one of my hamsters early in the month and I think it really set the tone for the days to come! I wasn’t expecting it and it really threw me off!

You kind of forget how much of an impact they have on you, even when they are only a few inches long, you know?

Personally, not much happened this month, but I did receive my beta-reader package

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from Andrew Henley for his book Hayley Soon, which actually comes out today, and is available on amazon kindle for 99p! You can also get the paperback (The cover is gorgeous! Photos just don’t do the colors on it justice) on his website and on amazon!

Goodreads
Amazon UK
Andrew’s Website

March’s goals include the following:

  1. Finish and send Tales of Monsters to Beta-Readers
  2. Finish up Beta-Reading Survey
  3. Do a little prep for Camp NaNoWriMo
  4. Read some books from the TBR
  5. Go and see Fall Out Boy!
  6. Do a little prep for April’s Camp NaNoWriMo

That’s not too much of a hard way to go, now is it? Nice short little goal list for a very long month! The last week of which will be filled with adult stuff, and my 24th birthday on that last day of the month too!

The first one is already very much planned, the beta reader list has been created (still gaps if anyone else wants to take the plunge). The survey I’m hoping to send out with it might be more like a letter than a survey at the rate it’s going. I have so many worries with it, and I’m hoping, that, if anything, giving Tales to beta-readers will give me some sort of clarity, or closure??

I think I’ve just got to a point where I need help with it, I need a different pair (or pairs) of eyes on it! I’m sure I’ll have a whole blog post about the process when it comes to it! The nerves are already getting at me…

This month, I’m also going to see Fall Out Boy on their Mania tour, and I am so excited! I’ve wanted to see them for years, but shy of not having anyone to go with in the past, when my friend phoned me up and said she and two others were getting tickets, how could I say no?

This album has also really helped me with my current WIP as well, in terms of themes to come in the later books, so I’m sure hearing it in the flesh will bring up whole emotions in itself (I know I’m already gonna cry a little anyway).

And, prepping for camp nano starts as well! In April, I’m hoping to go back to The Diary of a Child Zombie Killer and get the second draft of that at least started, but considering it is only about 50k odd words, I think I might be able to do it in the month! – It’s more getting the layout sorted than actually adding or taking away anything. There’s a new concept that I have to add in, but, because the book feels that much more personal than anything I’ve written before, it won’t take me long to write and add them in!

I’m honestly hoping to get that out to beta-readers a lot quicker than Tales, especially because it’s just so much easier to read and get my head around than Tales is! No prophecies to worry about, or any foreshadowing needed here! (And if I can let Tales be read, I’ve already jumped over that hurdle; and jumping backwards is a lot worse than jumping forwards).

Al, my main guy in Diaries will also be getting his own post on Sunday, but, it’s most likely just going to be a one part wonder sort of thing! I have a load of books that I’ve written (or started) writing reviews for, so I’m hoping to get some of those written up and posted!

I also have a couple of instagram challenges that I’m gonna try and keep up with this month too! There’s no point in adding it to my goals list, the last week of March is gonna be busy as hell for me, and I can just see myself missing out a few days!

What have you guys got planned for the month ahead? I’d love to know!

Until the weekend though,

Just Keep Writing,

Jade x