Tag Archives: writing

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Writer girl 

You can take girl away from the magazine but you can’t make her stop writing. 
I’ve got a massive creative surge going on right now and I’m trying to decide what to do with it. My business website is being redesigned, and apparently a WordPress update has sent the whole site into meltdown so it could be in maintenance for some time. 

For research, I started reading my Professional Beauty magazines and I really got the urge to write magazine features again. I used to love writing features… Finding stories, getting inside information, interviewing interesting people and getting things from different angles. I know it was just spa and salon magazines,  not anything heavyweight,  but I adored it. The whole process of putting a magazine together was just absorbing and I learned so much. 

Being freelance I do get to work on magazine features sometimes but most of my work is web copy and blogs. They have rules that features didn’t. SEO rules. Word count. Click bait. It’s a different ballgame. 

I still write for trade magazines, mainly health and social care but I yearn to write something meaty and dare I say glamorous?  I want to create a magazine of my own one day, online if I have to, but indulge my writer girl habit in interviews and actually finding out interesting things that people might not know. 

I’m also getting urges to get more artsy and creative with pictures, photos and design. 

I suppose the best thing about being freelance is that I get to do whatever I want with my business. Watch this space… 

Broken into Tiny Pieces

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Baby steps.

That’s how you’re supposed to do it, right?

You know when you get to that point in your life where you reach complete overwhelm? That might or might not be right about now. But I’m OK – this is a cheerful post, despite the title. I’m on this, I’m breaking it down, I’m dealing.

So you know when you have one of those days where you wake up with so many things on your mind that you know you need to address, but you really don’t know where the freaking hell to start?

I had one of those dreams last night that makes you sit up and think about what life could have been like if I’d taken a few different turns in the road, and although it wasn’t a particularly pleasant dream, I woke up with a sense of “I can do this.”

I think when you know there’s so much in your life that you’re not entirely happy about, some of it which you feel completely powerless over and other parts which you think you could probably make a start on but are going to take A LONG TIME, the temptation is to think “Ah, sod that” and just have another biscuit. Or is that just me?

So I’m taking stock of what I’m already doing to upgrade my life and what really does need sweeping out from under the carpet.

I CAN take control of the niggly little health issues that bother me. I have the power to make a start on that and so I have. I’m self-employed and I’m proud of the fact I’ve never had a day off sick in almost eight years but I do need to look after myself.

SELF CARE BABY!

(I’m not good at self-care. Everyone who knows me, knows that.)

I’m making the most of technology and have linked my Fitbit with Map My Walk and My Fitness Pal so that I can cheer myself on in tech. I am SO proud of myself for actually getting off the sofa at 8pm yesterday and going for a walk. That time of day is usually reserved for getting acquainted with the sofa…

I’m going to be really, really brave and look at my money situation as well. This year has been a complete and utter bitch financially, and I’m sorting that at so many different levels. I’m working on my money blocks using techniques from Denise Duffield Thomas’ amazing books, I’m tapping away at all the emotional baggage I have around money and not feeling I deserve it; and in practical terms I’m investing time into Pick Yourself Up at the moment, I’m applying for regular jobs to take the OMIGOD out of looking at my bank account and I’m also going to write a book to go with Pick Yourself Up about how I’m doing all this.

I haven’t decided whether to make it a self-help book or embellish the story a little and make it read like a novel – it’s not started yet!

I’ll blog it as I go along anyway.

I have to look at my overdrafts and accounts today and start small on setting up a savings account and a ‘pay shit off’ account. Starting small is going to be the way to go. My income is dropping by another third next month and I’m slightly worried to say the least!

I want to upgrade my life TOTALLY. There’s so much I need to sort out and so I’m looking at the little things, breaking it into baby steps, using my new EFT Tapping training to help me work on emotional baggage and looking after myself at the same time.

I just had a massive wake up call this weekend and it’s made me think a LOT about where my future lies, what I’m aiming for, my goals, my values and stopping coasting along when I could be doing so much more.

So, yeah. Tiny pieces…

Book cover

Have you got a story to tell?

 

Book cover

I know I really enjoyed writing my story in Gorgeously Full Fat, and ever since I finally got around to writing it, I’ve had people asking me how I did it, whether it’s hard to do, whether self-publishing is worth it…

So, I’ve told my story. And I’ve explained in easy-to-follow chapters the nitty gritty of writing your book. Should you even do it? Is your idea good enough? What do you do when you hit writer’s block (and you will.)

Should you use an editor? How easy is self-publishing REALLY?

I’ve also addressed one of the recurring conundrums of writing in a coffee shop. Although I still haven’t got a definitive answer so if you can help, feel free to give me your feedback!

If you fancy writing a book and want a no-nonsense guide to doing it, written in an informal, honest style (with the occasional rude word) then you could do worse than download, “Get Off The Sofa And Write The Book

Get it here

And to celebrate, I’m offering the first book I published, Gorgeously Full Fat, free all day tomorrow…

Ever wish you hadn’t started something?

For a few minutes this afternoon, I did. typewriter_woman

I’m writing a book called Viva Voluptuous. It’s about the adventures of a feisty, curvy heroine and her two besties, who decide they’ve had enough of all the negative press that fat people get and set about trying to change things. At the heart of the story, our heroine has to find her own lost Mojo too, as she’s just been dumped by a boyfriend who left her feeling less than sassy and she’s trying to make herself feel better as well as big up the confidence of gorgeous, curvaceous women everywhere.

It was dead easy at first. Fired up with the big idea and with my cheerleader Lisa behind me, I submitted my first three chapters to a publisher and did a little dance when I heard they’d accepted it and I was going to be a published novelist! Then there was the tricky bit…I only had three chapters. Now I had to make them into a book. *scared*

So I wrote and I wrote. I gave my heroine adventures, lovers and a past. I created her two besties, sent her all over the place and got her into loads of trouble. The “Shitty first draft” didn’t really take me that long to finish, and I was soon editing, chopping, changing and moving bits around. I sent it to be edited by a proper, clever, knows-what-she’s-doing editor lady who sent it back with lots of encouraging comments and set me back to work on editing it again.

This time it was trickier, but mostly it was adding in extra words. Turns out I’m a way better blogger than I am a story teller, and so it’s been a real eye-opener getting to grips with the way I write and changing it up so that I’m telling a tale, spinning a story and dreaming up adventures. Who knew making up conversations was so hard?

So anyway, it came back again last week, and my heart sank. You know when you’ve worked really hard on your homework at school and it comes back with red teacher’s comments all over it? That. Trouble is, I know my lovely editor lady is right! She wants the book to be a fantastic success and thinks I’ve got a brilliant idea, but the book, well it just needs some love. It needs crafting into a work of fiction, something that will get women everywhere to shout a big ‘Hell yeah’ as they turn the pages.

What do I want the book to be? I want it to be fun, a bloody good read and the kind of story that makes anyone who reads it feel good. I’ve never written a novel before so it’s gonna take time, love and practice…and determination!

Plan A is to get my head into some of my favourite girly books and really study them to see how they craft their stories. This weekend I’m mostly going to be hiding myself away with my netbook, sitting in a coffee shop in Bury St Edmunds somewhere and people watching, making notes, reading, rewriting and totally immersing myself in my characters and their lives so that I can bring them to you and make you love them all like I already do! If you’re in the vicinity, and want to treat me to a coffee and a cakey thing, be my guest.

So I’m not expecting Viva Voluptuous to be unleashed until later in the year, but to keep me going I thought I’d share a bit of the process with you. I’ll check in every week and let you know how I’m doing…and when it’s finally finished and I’m finally happy that I’ve done my book baby justice, you’ll be the first to know!