I have had a short break from writing lately. There are many reasons, not least of all I have felt a little disconnected from my stories due to a family loss and not wanting to write something inappropriate to the situation. I was considering this National Novel Writing Month but felt too rebellious towards the idea of “having” to write. Even when I make myself write to a time limit or word amount I find my head and imagination naturally rebels and switches off so for me it can be counterproductive.
That said I have still been mulling over many ideas and while I have not, up until last night, written anything in my main project I have toyed with some little ideas.
One thing I have done is done an “inspiration” piece. By this I mean I took a photograph of something while out and about and let my imagination run free. WHat came up was a short story based on a picture of a set of steps…yes a set of steps.
It has encouraged me to start compiling a series of these ideas and stories in some sort of madness collection in the future. It’s nothing serious, just an outlet to allow me to release some of the clutter that can often build up in my overactive imagination.
The story doesn’t even have a title, it’s a story set in World War II about a boy who has to become a man in one night has to become a man. Its overtones are coming of age and loss but told in a simple story that I really liked writing. It’s another project I would like to transcribe into a screenplay simply to offer as a short film but there is me running before I can walk again.
In the last few weeks I have had a short story published in a horror anthology DOWN WITH THE FALLEN which was a story born from a whim and seems to have been well received by the publishers compiling the anthology. This has not only allowed me to become “supported” in the sense I have been “published” but also gives me a little appearance over the pond in America and that can only be a good thing.
Last night I picked up where I had left BLACKOUT and reconnected with the story well. I was worried it would fall by the wayside as WHISPERING SHADOWS (the Jack James sequel) has done. That has been gathering virtual dust for almost sixteen months. The funny thing is, lately, I have been thinking about the story and realising there is still legs in it BUT for the moment I need to concentrate on Blackout and not bog myself down.
At the start of November, I launched BLUE LIGHT CHRISTMAS 2 this years charity endeavour raising funds for Care Of Police Survivors. I loved writing this story as my novel endeavours have been quite emotional in their storytelling. It was nice to have some simple fun with an audience a little less in need of tragedy or twists. Once again I suffer at the hands of my own (lack of) skills in marketing. I have managed to get a little more exposure this year and I am hoping that this will be a skill I slowly get my head around…only time will tell I suppose.
I have suffered the “why do I bother” feelings lately because I’m not making the big bucks or sitting at the top of the bestseller lists but I’ve realised this….I am going to keep doing it because for me it is more about releasing my imagination than making money (that would be nice). If I don’t tell my stories then they will never be told. If I can sit and have a conversation with a single person who has read my story and wants to know more then I’ve done my job.
Next year there are set to be two additions to my library hopefully. The first being INTO THE DARK which is a New Adult addition to the world of my Magdon monster. It is set to be a family-centric adventure bringing with it a sense of mystery and adventure. I have loved writing this story as I wanted to create something to appease the adults who invested their time (and money) into the ORIGINS OF THE MAGDON series. That shows me listening to my audience as a lot of older readers were “wanting more” from the legend and history so I have given people just that. Something bigger but not at the cost of the sense of intrigue and adventure I wanted to capture from the stories in the first place.
And that brings me back to influence and inspiration. INTO THE DARK is personal this time because I have set parts of it in places that mean something to me. Wollaton Hall features as does a trip to Mount Snowdon, places that have been part of my life for a long time so the story is born from things I have seen, places I have been and things I have done.
Today I have spent a lot of time researching parts of the Ukraine for BLACKOUT. Tomorrow who knows where my imagination will take me.
In fact….tonight I shall mostly be writing a screenplay for the short story I have no name for……must now think of a name!