Archive for September, 2012

September 28, 2012


The art of writing is the art of discovering what you believe.

Gustave Flaubert

I’ve been asked what motivates me to undertake the NaNoWriMo challenge and I’m having trouble putting it into words (some author I’m going to be!).

Motivation is a difficult thing to describe. I am motivated to write a novel for purely self gratifying reasons whereas the motivation to raise money for the hospice comes from the realisation that they could not continue to operate without charitable donations.

read more »

September 27, 2012

Fifty Shades of Terrible Writing

Writing Erotic fiction is easy:

The plowing of my fudge factory was so vigorous, he soon found his jingle-jangle jewellery joining his spunk-filled spam rocket deep in my vintage golf bag.

read more »

September 27, 2012

Thought Crystallisation

I do not like to write – I like to have written.

Gloria Steinem

The Hospice writing challenge will only begin on November 1st which allows me a little thinking time to outline the plot and characters (which is allowed under the National Novel Writing Month rules), so as such I haven’t yet got a title in mind, I’m hoping this will present itself organically during the writing process.

To begin with I’ve given myself a two-sentence “kickstarter” as a skeleton upon which to flesh out some plotlines:

read more »

September 24, 2012

The Avatars v Wigan Warriors

From 2002-2004 I was the frontman of The Avatars; the most incendiary punk-rock act this side of Billinge. Our gigs were 100MPH affairs with songs about Darth Vader, and the set was often littered with bad jokes about one-legged trampolining midgets smeared in custard.

Basically, we were sonic diarrhoea.

read more »

September 23, 2012

Yellow Blue Tibia

It’s strange how reading a fantastic novel can both energise and enervate. A finely crafted story can be inspiring and fill ones head with fantastic “what if” ideas yet can simultaneously kick you hard in the balls as you fear you can never attain such high standards.

Yellow Blue Tibia by Adam Roberts is such a story. Its literary merits are profound, using science fiction as the vehicle by which it examines philosophical questions regarding our place in the cosmos and our uniqueness within the universe. This isn’t space adventure; aliens and rayguns, this is more highbrow fayre.

As such, it’s quite sucked the wind out of my sails. Luckily I found this cheat sheet: by fellow NaNoWriMo-er Peter Halasz to provide me with a few ideas.

Cheers Pete!

September 23, 2012

Initial Attempts at Creativity….

I love being a writer. What I can’t stand is the paperwork.

Peter De Vries

So I’ve started to let the ideas percolate through my brain. I say ideas…..

I say brain….

I’ve hit a creative block already.

I had an idea of two warring brothers, one driven insane by the transgressions of his younger brother (I won’t put a spoiler in, let’s just say he was really, really bad) but currently the idea is pretty one dimensional: bloke pisses off brother, they have a fight, twist in the tale. I have yet to devise a mechanism that will drive the plot onwards.

So I’ve started randomly suggesting titles to myself and single-sentence plot/setting descriptions to try and get the creative juices flowing. Additionally I’ve let Seventh Sanctum’s Alien Race Name Generator come up with some ideas:

Cyborg Zombies vs. Ninja Space Pirates

Lunar Raiders of the Moon

People Who Live in Leaves and Trees

Interdimensional Hounds

Jaguar-zombies Of Elgebar Delta

Madness Astrologers Of The Black Hole

Attack of the Moon Napoleons


I bet you can’t wait….. :-/

September 21, 2012

So Many Words – So Little Time


Every writer I know has trouble writing.

Joseph Heller

Ok, so I’ve resolved to write a novel to raise some much needed cash for Wigan and Leigh Hospice. I’m doing it in conjunction with National Novel Writing Month which takes place each November, giving me 30 days to write 50,000 words.

That’s 1,667 words per day, which has to be fitted into a normal working schedule. I can’t back out now as the donations have already started to come in.

To get the word count up I’ll have to ditch my inner editor; the voice that tells you something isn’t quite right, or that the dialogue you’ve just written could be more realistic. Basically, the nagging wretch that slows you down with technicalities and stops you from ever working things through to completion.

So he’s (she’s?) gone, dumped, and the muse is set free to run with creative abandon through my brain. I’ll be writing a lot of nonsense, but it will (in theory) be an unshackled, rough diamond. Hmmm. We’ll have to wait and see.