Insecure Writer’s Support Group: Changing My Spots

Insecure Writer's Support GroupToday is May’s instalment of Insecure Writer’s Support Group, which sees hundreds of writers and bloggers worldwide post about their insecurities, support others with theirs, and offer up advice for overcoming them. If you want to visit the other IWSG member blogs, or sign up yourself, you can do so here.

There are those who say people don’t change, that old habits die hard, that leopards…well, you get the picture. But that doesn’t have to be the case.

I’m sure, as writers, we all know that there’s always something new to learn, or a new viewpoint to consider, that we don’t, never have, and will never know it all. It’s important to be open to change, otherwise we simply keep making the same mistakes over and over. I’m sure we’ve all got the unfinished manuscripts to prove it.

I used to insist that I was a discovery writer, that plotting simply did not work for me. And, you know what? It was true. Plotting didn’t work. But it wasn’t because the concept of it was wrong, just that my method was.

It’s taken a long time, and a lot of unfinished stories (and, actually, a lot of soul-searching too) to discover how I plot, and what systems and strategies are right for me. But that’s what it’s all about, right? Trial and error.

So this is me now, elbow deep in plotting. Lots of pens, lots of index cards, lots of colour. And, not only is it working for me, but I’m loving it too. I’m a convert!

Plotting

Got Goals? Endings and Beginnings

Big Goals BloghopHello strangers! I completely missed last month’s post, but I have a very good excuse: it was my son’s 1st birthday. Such an important milestone. So I now have two months to catch up on.

So, The Visionary (The Paper Duchess Book 3) was published as an ebook at the end of February, and after a lot of fiddling and to-ing and fro-ing, I finally published the paperback version just yesterday. It’s so nice to be able to wave that book goodbye at last, and let it fend (mostly) for itself. Alongside its existing siblings of course. And, as every motivational poster tells us, endings always herald new beginnings. You know; doors opening and closing and all that.

So what is next? Well, a beginning and an ending, in a sense. I’m just about to start writing The Mothers (The Paper Duchess Book 4), and I’m so excited about wading into a brand new project. First drafts are my favourite bit. But The Mothers will also be the concluding book of the series. That’s actually a really sad thought. It’s going to be hard to say goodbye to those characters, and that world.

But you know what? There’s those doors again, because I have got some other projects I’m really excited to get started on.

How’s your month been? If you want to visit the other blogs in this blog hop, or fancy signing up yourself, check out the linky list here: sylmion.blogspot.co.uk/p/do-you-have-goal.html

Review: Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough

Behind Her Eyes This may be a somewhat controversial view, but here goes…

★★★
For months before this book’s release I had excitedly followed the hype on Twitter, and I grabbed my copy as soon as it was out in our local Waterstones, chatting with the cashier about how great it was supposed to be. I think that was problem number one. It was too hyped up, and I started reading it with impossibly high expectations.

Of course, all the hype was about the final twist, that Twitter hashtag of #WTFthatending. And that, I think, was problem number two. Rather than immersing myself openly into the book and its characters, I spent the whole time looking for clues, trying to figure it out, to be one step ahead. I kept the whole thing, untrustingly, at arms length, and found myself not caring about the characters at all.

My third problem was that it was written by Sarah Pinborough, one of my favourite authors. I so wanted it to be another The Death House, which had me sobbing at the end, or 13 Minutes, that I read in just a few days. But it wasn’t.

I hate giving this just 3 stars, but it left me unfulfilled, unsatisfied, and, frankly, a little angry that it wasn’t everything I wanted it to be. I didn’t like the final twist, and the very ending annoyed me immensely.

But I don’t think it was all the book’s fault. I wanted too much from it. It was over hyped and failed to live up to its marketing.

Insecure Writer’s Support Group: Raising the (Nearly) Dead

Insecure Writer's Support GroupToday is March’s instalment of Insecure Writer’s Support Group, which sees hundreds of writers and bloggers worldwide post about their insecurities, support others with theirs, and offer up advice for overcoming them. If you want to visit the other IWSG member blogs, or sign up yourself, you can do so here.

I completely forgot about posting in February as I was absolutely swamped with writing, editing, and publishing, so I have a good excuse!

This month we’re being asked Have you ever pulled out a really old story and reworked it? Did it work out?

As it happens, my very first release as an indie author was exactly that.

Cutting the BloodlineCutting the Bloodline started life as a stage play way back in 2010, and was stashed in a draw for years before I reworked it and released it as a novella five years later.

I knew the story wasn’t entirely dead; the characters and the idea kept bugging me, kept whispering in my ear, and kept pushing me to release the story. How could I say no?

So Cutting the Bloodline became my debut release. It was the book that taught me how to format an ebook, how to use KDP, how to market a book, how to handle a book launch, pretty much everything about the indie publishing world. Of course, I’ve learnt so much more since, and there’s always new things to learn, but this book will always be special because it was my first. The characters too, of course, and I couldn’t say for definite that I’m finished with them either.

She’s Out, and She’s Not Playing Nice…

It’s release day!

The Visionary“You’re just as weak minded as everyone else. Just as easy to control.”

After generations of freedom from the administration’s rule, the slum women find themselves facing a census. But as officers try to list and tag them, their efforts are met with violent resistance.

Maeve needs to keep Faith safe, and hidden, but she has another demon to battle. Powerful psychic Corinn, the girl nobody wants, is playing deadly games, and no one’s safe from her influence.

Maeve’s learning to fight back, but her powers aren’t the only thing being unlocked, and she doesn’t have long to decide who to trust.

You can continue the Paper Duchess series by buying your copy at Amazon, iTunes, Nook, and Kobo, and adding it on Goodreads.

Check out the love it’s getting already:

The Visionary Reviews

Got Goals? Third Time’s the Charm

Big Goals BloghopWell, February has been something of a whirlwind, and, thankfully, really, really productive.

The Visionary, the third book in my Paper Duchess series is all ready to go for its release on February 28th. It’s been a heck of a journey to get there, a journey that, at times, I didn’t think I would ever finish. But February came with a renewed determination, and it’s been absolutely fantastic.

So the series continues, and The Visionary is available at Amazon, iTunes, Nook, and Kobo. What a relief. Normally, I would take a well-deserved break now, but I have After‘s release on March 6th. Here we go again!

How’s your February been?

How has January been for you goals? If you want to visit the other blogs in this blog hop, or fancy signing up yourself, check out the linky list here: sylmion.blogspot.co.uk/p/do-you-have-goal.html