I know what you’re thinking! How is that possible?
But seriously this letter was really encouraging, and… wait for it… they gave me tips to improve, AND, yes there’s more, they’ve invited me to resubmit once I’ve fixed what they’ve suggested.
I’m so amazed that they not only read it in one day and got back to me, but also gave me feedback even though they were saying no.
It has really gotten my writing fire going again.
Only one tiny problem, I have no time to write at the moment. Why couldn’t this great opportunity have come 5 months ago?
Go away kid! Faye thought miserably. No lights means no one’s home… Duh! She tried to concentrate on the TV.
“I guess no one’s home,” a muffled voice echoed her thoughts.
It was Halloween and all the kids were out collecting sweets from strangers. Faye had been invited to a couple parties with friends but she had turned them all down.
It wasn’t that Faye didn’t like Halloween; she enjoyed dressing up in fun costumes. It was just that Halloween came with problems for her. For as long as she could remember, she had been hiding this secret. It only affected her on this one night. It never used to be a problem, this night had only gained popularity here in the last few years.
When she was younger, before her problem started, she had led the way on her street when Halloween started getting popular. It wasn’t long however that it was ruined for her.
She glanced at her phone and the screen flashed 20:04.
Time for a film. She wasn’t one for scary movies, but she felt that the festivities should be felt. She wandered over to her DVD collection and pulled out the first series of her favourite old show: Charmed. Smiling, Faye made her way back to her tv and stuck the first disc in. She lay down on the sofa and watched episode after episode.
Faye checked her phone every now and then. She wasn’t expecting any messages; everyone was out having fun as witches, ghosts, and monsters. She kept checking the time. 21:15, 22:28, 23:46.
Ha! It’s nearly midnight. It’s nearly over for another year! she thought happily.
Sorry for my lack of posting, balancing uni and work is just crazy. I haven’t written anything story related in weeks.
Anyway, I was browsing books and I found something that made me cry noooo! I came across a book that used a name I had used.
Now it’s not a name like John, Mary, or Jack. It’s a made up word. Or at least I’d thought that I’d made it up.
They are used to refer to different things. In the book it was someone’s name, whereas I use it for a group of people. But it’s the same name.
‘Auri’ is what I mean. I came up with it from the latin word for gold, aureus, as in the chemical symbol AU. Now I’m not saying it’s very obscure like some of my other names, but it’s still upsetting.
Now I’m going to have to come up with another name for them. And I always struggle with these kinds of names. This is also probably going to stall me slightly.
Lately my other project has been consuming my thoughts. The witch story that I have the opening couple paragraphs for. I probably shouldn’t let it distract me from my main story (especially now that I’m back to studying and don’t have time to write anything but psychology).
But I’ve been wondering what she would be studying. I have a picture of my character, age, vague appearance, and kind of what she does. But I don’t know the specifics. I want to explore the university student part of her – very relevant to my life right now – but I just don’t know what she would study.
Do I have her study psychology like me? Because I know exactly what it’s all about.
Or do I have her study something completely different that I’d need to find out more about?
There’s nothing that I can tell so far that she’d need to study to contribute to the story. The only thing is I know she won’t be studying history because that would be a sideline research job for her. Or do I make her study history because it would make her life easier?
Hopefully she’ll reveal her passion to me soon enough :)
There goes Kate rushing past. Again. She is so focused on her life that she misses everything. She is so intent on getting things done that she misses everything around her. So consumed by making her life run exactly as it should that she skips the pleasures. She doesn’t stop to admire places, or see the people around her, or take in beautiful things. Had she stopped in that place, she may have gotten her dream job. Had she seen the people around her, she may have met her soul mate. And had she stopped to take in that random piece of nature, she may have found the perfect place to live.
Life is what we make of it. But it’s also about the moments that define us. Those small instances that fate tries to intervene to guide us.
Let me clue you in on my writing session today.
I had finally sat down to write a scene that I’ve been avoiding for a few days. It’s not a bad scene in any way, it is a bit technical but that’s fine. I don’t really know why I was avoiding it, just one of those things. Instead I had spent that time working on my other project which I’d put on hold for a long time – the dystopia story I wrote here is going to fit into this existing project.
Anyway, so I started the scene and then realised that it was going to get technical so I had to go back to find the other time I’d mentioned the same technique. I write in Scrivener, so all my parts are split up and there’s this nifty outline feature which I mastered the other day. So I was looking at the outline and it has the chapter names and the synopses of each chapter. But I’d stopped at chapter 7 and hadn’t written any more synopses after that.
I’m now in the middle of chapter 12, so I went back to chapter 7 and filled in the synopses of each section. DISTRACTION NO. 1.
Of course, to get the synopses I had to read through everything again to make sure I put the right events in. And as soon as a reread happens, editing does also. DISTRACTION NO. 2.
Then when I’d made some tweaks and finished all my synopses, I decided to go back and go through the notes a proofreader had made and keep those changes. DISTRACTION NO. 3.
And now here I am writing this. DISTRACTION NO. 4.
Now that I’ve done all that tomorrow morning I should be able to sit down and do this scene without any problems. We’ll see how true that is!
The final instalment in this short story collection.
They were both wary as the other approached. She drew a sword she had picked up along the way. He had no weapon but was still able to defend himself. They were both at the ready to strike any second.
Slowly, as they got nearer, the fog cleared and they faced each other. It took them a few moments to assess the situation, after which they had they seemed to come to a truce and relax a bit. She dropped her sword arm and held it loosely by her side. He released the magic he was holding at the ready.
They introduced themselves and in a few words summed up their reason for being there:
“I’m urgently needed in the village over the mountain.”
“I’m exploring,” she admitted. Her reason sounded so feeble compared to his desperate need to get to his destination.
She tentatively asked, “Shall we pool our resources and make it through the mountain together?”
He looked at her questioningly. He could not figure out if she needed help or thought he needed the help. He supposed it would help if he had a companion. It would ease the burden of travelling alone and split the duties needed in the mountain.
Gruffly he agreed.
Having met someone else, he suddenly felt very self-conscious. She was clearly a normal person. She also didn’t seem to have a care in the world.
He was neither.
He had been banished to this world from another. He had the burden of trying to earn his way back there.
In the meantime, he had decided to use his magic to benefit the people around him. He had wanted to fill his time and help people. He had always been set on helping others, but he had lost the right to do that.
He worked his way from place to place growing his reputation as a miraculous healer. He had never stayed long enough to make any friends. He didn’t want the added burden of making those connections and having to explain what he was.
But now, company was forced upon him and he didn’t know what to do.
He just had to get over the mountain without letting anything slip and they would be able to part ways. Just hang in there, he kept telling himself.
I wrote this a while ago. I had written the first bit meaning it to be a once off, but with some encouragement it turned into more. I considered expanding it into something more but I haven’t done anything more with it. This is the first part.
Journey’s near end
Standing at the base of the mountain was very daunting. The man standing there was weary from a long journey already. He looked up at the mountain and sighed.
There was a path leading the way up the mountain. But it was filled with trees and rocks. It was a very difficult path to navigate.
The man adjusted his heavy bag that burdened him. He took a deep breath to steel himself, then set off.
The journey so far had been long and fraught with difficulties. But he knew that if he could just make it over this last mountain he would reach his destination.
The destination was the only thing keeping him going. Contrary to popular belief, this journey was not the best part. The destination would be the best part. The journey was merely a means to an end. A means that had to be endured with difficulty. But that would make the relief of the destination all the better.
The man on the path was on a long journey. He had come a long way and still had a long way to go. He had been alone the whole time.
The loneliness was terrible.
When he got to the mountain he knew it would be even more difficult than it had been up until now. And as he was alone he had nothing to distract him from the arid landscape.
But he accepted his fate. He had after all chosen this. Well not exactly chosen – as he would have done other things if he could have, but he knew what he was getting into.
He had gone up about a quarter of the way when his luck changed. He had stopped for the night and was now unpacking. He sat for a little while longer enjoying the breeze blowing.
It was then that he heard the footsteps in the distance. A figure was approaching him.
I received another rejection today. I’ve lost count of how many that is now.
This time the rejection was particularly disheartening because of the way they phrased it. I know it’s a standard reply – or at least I’m hoping it is – but it just sounded worse. They wrote that they don’t think they’d be able to find a publisher for my book. It’s just so negative!
One step closer to self-publishing I guess.
I just don’t know how to go about it. It sounds complicated! I’d like to have a hard copy as well as an ebook. I think ebooks are great and make my life easier in terms of travelling around and shelf space, but I still like having a physical book.
Marketing my book is probably the most scary thing about self-publishing.
Aaah this is so complicated!