Friday Thoughts 02 – A Writing Update

Friday Thoughts 02 – A Writing Update

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Hello again, hope you’ve had a good week.

As a writer I’ve always got a number of projects on the go at any one time. This week I thought I’d focus on the writing I’ve been doing and offering a couple of progress updates. 

Film Reviews

These are gone on here, for now at least. I’m still watching a load of films as per the spreadsheet I talked about last week. I’ll add to the Zombie Zone with every new zombie flick I see, but otherwise don’t expect to see many updates in general.

I’m not saying I’ll never go back to writing them, it all comes down to available time and value for money, as it were. Currently there are only a small number of my 700+ reviews that consistently get any hits. This is fine in itself as my habit of writing reviews was solely to learn the skill. If anybody else got a benefit from it then all the better.

It’s also pushing me towards that fabled 1 million words mark that should, in theory, make me a competent writer. We’ll see how that goes. In any case, I’ve moved beyond writing about every film I see in detail, at least for the time being.

What I may end up doing is lump a few similar films together on a page and see if that makes it easier for people to find what they want. Maybe a Steven Seagal collection, or a dodgy TV budget movie category? There’s a few possibilities there.

However, it’s worth pointing out that I have an active Instagram account where I mainly post the title screens for films I’ve seen. Check out the feed here. And if you feel so inclined, please subscribe for more.

Otherwise, watch this space.

Novels

This is where things get a little complicated. I finished the first draft of my first full length novel in 2015. It was then that I decided to jump straight into a second book. I am in the process of finishing off its first draft.

I had intended to do NaNoWriMo again this year, for the third year running, however life kind of got in the way again. November’s a difficult month to get things done. I may very well have another go at it, just at another time of year.

Each of these first drafts needs at least one further draft and polish before I let any beta readers take a look. The first novel in particular needs a lot of work. Too many narrative threads, too many characters… it’s a draft that is clearly written by somebody who has never written a full length novel before.

But… it has a lot going for it, certainly its premise and, eventually its plot and characters too.

The thing is, I don’t see this as time wasted at all. It’s all helped me develop an appreciation for the craft and how to plot out a story. Each of the three stories I’ve worked on so far have got progressively better, the characters more developed, the world building and detail more balanced.

As a way towards appreciating the complexities and difficulties of novel writing, it has been a valuable experience. I can also appreciate why until 2015 I was never able to write a full length novel. Again, a valuable experience.

Put it this way, I’m 10,000 words into my third book right now, and I haven’t fully introduced the villains yet. It’s all been about scene setting and the characters. Hark at me and my development as a writer, eh?

Short Stories

I’ve decided to branch away from the content I do in my full length novels. I have a couple of short story series in progress that I’m hoping to release every other month in 2017.

I should make clear that those two series are linked by their main characters only. There isn’t an ongoing narrative thread as such, and they stand on their own. You don’t need to have an awareness of the world or the characters to get into them, although I will be threading some of this throughout the stories as I go.

I’ll hopefully have the first one available for release towards the end of January, but I’ll not commit to any hard release dates as yet. I’ve done that before, many times over, but it didn’t pan out.

So far though, the first story for each series is almost ready for editing, and they run for about 6-8000 words apiece. Nothing too major, and just enough for people to sink their teeth into.

That wasn’t a hint about their content, by the way – no vampires.

Screenplays and Scripts

This is an ongoing labour of love, but I’m trying to create more time to finish writing my serial The Adventures of Trent Samuels. I first started working on this back in 2005. Since then I have made one full series and 2 Festive Specials recorded (with lots of help, obviously). I really should put a blog post together about that at some point. I’ll add it to the list.

More recently I’ve focused on trying to write the full 7 series before I set about recording it. As you might expect, with everything else I’ve been doing above, time has not been particularly available for this task.

But with dropping the film reviews, I’m hoping to make some progress over the coming months. Besides, I started work on Series 4, Episode 4 in December 2015. That’s long enough to be in Development Hell. Thankfully since I started typing up this post, I’ve almost finished writing that script. With a full plan in place it usually takes no more than an hour to write an episode. I will get cracking on that.

This Blog

Well as you can tell, this is my second week running where I’ve written a blog post. Huzzah. After a few months of silence, this is a good thing. I’ll be covering all sorts of stuff here. Things that have happened or occurred to me that week, writing updates like this, good music or other pop culture things. The whole works. I’m not limiting myself to just one area for this, if nothing else it frees me up to just talk nonsense for a few hundred words. Wibble wibble.

That’s as good a note as any to finish on this week. See you in a week.

Please leave a comment or contact me if you have any questions or points you’d like to raise – good or bad!

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