Archive | April, 2012

It can’t be May Day already? – Time to lose the ‘dilly-dallying’!

30 Apr

May has always been my favourite month of the year. It’s an optimistic month – the anticipation that we might actually have a warm, pleasant summer; we can start considering outdoor events such as festivals, picnic’s and BBQ’s with last year’s washed-out disasters firmly put down in memory as ‘bad luck’  and we begin to consider all hues of cheery colours as possible wardrobe wearables. In general, there is just a less drab look about the place as we start opening windows and hanging laundry out on the mossy green washing line outside, enchanted by the smell of fabric conditioner in the open air.

Usually, May is the month where my ‘dilly-dallying’ and ‘faffing about’ usually stops. I can no longer get by on the usual suspect excuse of ‘it’s still early in the year yet’ as my reasoning for having achieved little by the time May rolls around. The darkness of the winter months has long slide past the horizon, the gentle nudges of spring have at best retreated and it is face the music time – what is this year going to be all about and am I making any progress? What of my plans and goals?

Last night, I lay awake until 3am pondering the above. I analysed each month of the year so far and what I had achieved, if anything? Over-all, considering this is my ‘Year of Profound Change’, I feel I am doing quiet well, notwithstanding the fact that the last 4 weeks have morphed into a slight state of limbo on the creative front.

Goals and Achievements Tally (I used to call these KPI’s in a past life):

1. Define Life Vocation

–          After much soul-searching and ‘back-against-the wall-stuff’ I now know I want to pursue a life of writing and creativity

2. Bring Life-Long Aspiration to Fruition

–          I have completed the first draft of my first fiction novel and I am currently (albeit very slowly) occupied with the first re-editing stage.

3. Identify steps to translate my newly defined Life Vocation into reality

–          Write every day – I set a goal to write one piece of flash fiction and one short story, in order to build a creativity     bank (also for competitions).

–          Blog – I have entered and embraced the Bloggisphere – two blogs, with another in the pipeline.

–          Read – lots and lots!

–          Learn – Understand the literary and publishing world.

–          Study what I am interested in – I have researched possible Psychological courses for the autumn this year.

–          Be inspired – The idea for a fantasy novel came to me in the middle of the night and I am dipping in and out of that, as inspiration strikes.

4. Launch ‘Me Version 2.0’ 

–          Break free from the Rut – I have moved city mostly in the hope that a change of scenery will give me new perspective.

–          Address bad habits (negative thinking, destructive life-style choices, aimlessness and the ‘woe-me’ mentality).

5. Make Money

–          Really struggling with this one!

Not bad I feel, considering I couldn’t see the wood from the trees last autumn, so thick was the fog in my clouded brain. I have come along way in the first four months of 2012. However, the move to a different city unsettled my routine and focus slightly more than I had anticipated. The creative focus took a dip as my energy went in to settling in and familiarizing myself with my new surroundings, living arrangements, organising logistics (such as internet access, parking permits, unpacking & arranging) and then there is was – the month of May!

So it’s now time to stop the ‘dilly-dallying’ & ‘faffing about’ and get back to business – the business of achieving my goals. And so as of today, I need to:

1. Find and secure my daily routine.

2. Sharpen the focus on my writing – first re-edited draft to be completed by June 1st (see new count-down timer!

3. To catch up on last month, 2 short stories and 2 pieces of flash fiction, plus a Chapter for my fantasy novel by June 1st

4. Devise a structured plan to make money.

Wish me luck people – no more ‘faffing about’!


Stranger than Fiction

23 Apr


Writing fiction based on true events? I spent most of late last night and today researching this issue and to my absolute relief I found this very interesting post entitled “Could I be Liable for Libel in Fiction?”on the blog Rights of Writers.

I was fraught with worry in relation to aspects of novel writing that I didn’t really understand, considering this is my first venture into writing – that of libel, defamation or other scary legal words I had stumbled across in relation to writing about real persons or events.  Despite my fiction novel being based on true events and real people, it contains no falsities, malice or ill-will towards any of the main characters (well, apart from myself perhaps!). For the most part, it is  a thoughtful psychological analysis of how certain events, people and instances can effect the human psyche from childhood through into adulthood and up until self-discovery.

In truth, the human mind is the antagonist of the novel and it is the only ‘character’ that receives heavy handed treatment by me. And so, I am going to stop worrying, continue on and focus on getting my re-editing done over the next few months instead of worrying about things that are not relevant right now, and may not ever be.

Truth can sometimes be stranger and that is why it is so important for creative writers to embrace it, don’t you think?


Old Love Letters Revisited

15 Apr

The dark, angst ridden stuff I wrote, back then, oh god, should I be embarrassed…..tonight is my last night in my current house, and so, all the old odds and ends and hidden boxes of souvenirs were finally pulled out from under the bed.  And there it was, ‘the memories box’ – all dusty and ragged looking but still able to cast a silent spell of nostalgia over me. I hunched up to the wall and lifted the lid. Ryder Cup passes, Electric Picnic passes (the less sunny Irish attempt at Coachella) and other random cinema tickets, birthday cards and letters to loved ones when I lived in France. And then, there they were – letters and late night poetry to ‘The Boy’.

Granted, my love letters were largely unrequited, despite being acknowledged, but they never brought the turnaround I was hoping for. They were mostly fraught with angst and severe melancholy and on re-reading them tonight , I actually wonder if they could be termed as ‘love letters’ at all. Foolish, awful, creative, god who knows….

So, I wanted to share the last 3 verses of a 14 verse poem I wrote for ‘The Boy’ — I have never shown these to anyone, eeekkk….they was written in the depths of despair after I found him with his new love.

Late at night, I talk to you, to let my soul find sleep

You don’t hear, you can’t listen, you sleep in blissful peace

Words true, feelings strong, I’ve lost the man I love

But things have changed and time moves on, but still the heart wants things

To protect you from the storm of life, to dry your tears of pain

To hold your dreams and fly with them, to make you smile for you

To shelter you when times get tough, to feed your hungry thoughts

To cover you with a blanket of love and hide you from those who hurt

You were the only voice I wanted, when darkness crept its way in

The light had dimmed, the sail had lapsed, the sun no longer shone

Dark thoughts lay on my heart, I clung to the only light

In a sky washed with the darkest blue, you were the only star that shone.



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