Monthly Update – Where I am at: Life!
This is the month that marks a full year since my mum passed away.
It is such a funny thing, but I hate saying ‘passed away’, it is like I am censoring it almost for other people, like I don’t want to offend them by being blunt and freaking them out by saying ‘died’. And then another part of me doesn’t want to say ‘died’ either, cos its just as blunt and awful seeing that word in relation to my mum for myself.
See? Grief is weird.
And it’s really been a fairly stupid year.
Better than last year though, I guess.
I reckon next year will be better. I am gonna work hard to make sure it is.
My take on it is that it's like having a really low immune system. It is really easy for stuff to slip through on a daily basis and make you really down, so you really have to work a whole lot harder to stay positive. Usually I spend days really down about a million little things in life, like my writing (oh noes...it’s going nowhere even though I work so hard), my full time work (it takes up soooooo much time), my cat (dude, she scratched me....again!), and totally dumb stuff like I stubbed my toe or whatever.
And then after a few days of being in a deep dark hole I realise.....lightbulb! I am just actually sad because my mum is gone.
Well done, Sherlock!
The funny thing is it has taken me nearly a full year to finally understand that when I start feeling down about everything in that way, it is actually just grief coming around again, the latest wave after some time where I feel good and positive.
I think it is the weirdest thing that I don’t seem to really understand my own emotions.
It got me thinking about how hard it actually is to know yourself. To understand what you feel, and why you are feeling it.
Life is such a strange little invention, I reckon.
But don’t get me wrong, this month of November was always going to be a strange one.
Sometimes I am very stressed out by writing, but mostly I just really, completely, utterly, freaking LOVE stories. I love them in a crazy way and I want to write all the books that I desperately want to read, I want to explore all sorts of ideas and topics within those stories, and I want to learn how to write better and edit my work better and the whole idea just excites me on a full-on crazy level.
This year I have written one new story at approx. 70,000, which still requires a few more thorough edits, but I am hoping to send it to my writing group in the new year after I have cleaned it up substantially. I am very excited about it, as it is a rather unusual detective story and my first go at a proper crime mystery.
But my main mission this year was to stop writing new things, which was making me ignore my existing stories, which still hadn’t received the editing they deserved. My aim for 2017 was to get all my novels up to the highest standard I can get them.
But the first step in achieving that goal was to learn a hell of a lot more about editing. Because I think I kind of sucked at it.
I really worked hard on learning this year, and I really hope my skills have improved. I think they have, but I know there is still a lot of work to be done. I am lucky enough to have received a lot of information from some very cool and very accomplished writers, which I am very grateful for. And actually recently, I received some amazing feedback from some editors in the industry that my revision on one of my novels was successful. This makes me happy, as I know I am on the right track with my learning this year, and that I have indeed improved. :)
Though obviously, if you know anything about editing at all, you will know it is an ongoing life journey that will take forever and ever and ever.
I don’t think I will ever stop learning about editing.
But I suspect that is a good thing.
After all, what is the point of loving something if you don’t constantly work hard to get better at it?
In other news, I have two new stories coming along in my head, which I am unbelievably excited about. But I absolutely refuse to allow myself to begin writing something new until my other four novels have reached their highest level possible.
So it is back to editing I must go!
Two down now and still two more to go!
Dude, I am going to China for Christmas with my husband. And I am unbelievably excited.
I am such a travel head and have wanted to see China for a long time. It will be ridiculously cold while we are there, but we will see the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, a billion museums and the Art district and basically we will eat everything in Beijing. We will potentially eat the whole of Beijing.
I am very much looking forward to it.
Guest Blog Post.
Oh and a SUPER cool thing happened, I did a guest blog post for my favourite website on the internet, Dramabeans.
It was just me raving about a TV show I really loved this year, and was called - [Alternate Endings] I’ve come to save Rescue Me from its ending.
It was a pretty fun thing to get a chance to do :)
This is a thing other people do, they list the stuff they read..... am I going to do that? I am not sure. I have been reading YA really consistently this year which has been so totally excellent and a lot of fun. Especially after joining a YA book club where I get to hear other people analysing the books we read. So interesting!
But to be honest I don’t really keep count of what I read, I just read when I get time and enjoy myself. Also, I really don’t enjoy trying to rate books I read. And I don’t love writing reviews for books I didn’t enjoy. It feels weird to bag out someone’s hard work, maybe cos I understand these days how much work does go into these little monsters.
But I do love using Instagram to keep track of my reading. Posting lovely photos of books is a lot more fun than trying to write reviews :) Here are some I have read this year.
So...until next time :)