Tuesday, 28 February 2012

An Unfortunate Piece of News...

I know yesterday that I pormised to reveal the author of my first interview etc etc, but it just goes to show, that no one can predict what technology will do....

As soon as I posted my last blog post last night, I went onto another blog and decided to follow it - the second I clicked the 'follow' button, about 9 anti-virus messages popped up and then the internet closed down...and so did the Word doc I'd been working on (don't worry, I'd saved shortly before this happened!). So I turned it off and on again, and when I did, ALL the icons from my desktop had gone and all my files and about a million error messages came up, along with a so-called 'system scan' telling me I had numerous hardware faults....

Yup, that's right. My laptop has fallen sick with a virus.

I wasn't annoyed because I could no longer upload the blog post I'd been hoping to do last night, or the fact that it closed down my documents, I was just terrified because if it had wormed it's way onto my flash pen (which was connected to the laptop at the time)...I'd have been screwed. All my major project work that I've been working on since the summer (and it's due in 3 weeks) was on there, along with all the important files I need for the rest of my c/w. Basically, I would've had a mental breakdown!

Luckily, that wasn't the case. Although the Other Half couldn't fix it (it died completely on him), we did manage to find a computer company near us that was happy for us to take it in, despite the fact it was 7pm. The nice man also checked my flash pen and to my relief, there was no sign of a virus on there.

I'm currently waiting on a call (he said he'd ring today) telling me aboutt he fate of my laptop. The Other Half seemed confident it could be fixed, although he did tell me repeatedly that it was time to upgrade to a new laptop (The OS failed last summer too...although I won't admit it to him, I think he might be right...ggrr...).

So, essentially, I have no laptop of my own, although I am currently using the Other Half's laptop instead. I think I will still try to post up about my interview this afternoon, but I probably won't be able to upload the interview itself until Thursday or Friday...a bit of bummer, but better than nothing!

Oh, and I also won't be following any more blogs for a while - I've kind of lost faith in the 'follow' button!

That's all for now! Have a good day, everyone!

Monday, 27 February 2012

It's coming...

Yes, that's right, I've finally managed to persuade one of the lovely authors over on the Authonomy site to let me interview them for my first ever blog interview :)!!

I'm so excited! I'll be revealing all in about an hour's time, and the interview itself will be coming on Wednesday, so it's an exciting week for both me and everyone at Authonomy!

Plus, I've (briefly) been chatting to a few of the other authors on the site, and they seem happy to let me interview them too! So I've got a few more interviews in the pipeline for you :)! In regards, to book reviews, I literally haven't had the time to read through all the books on the Authonomy site that I would have liked to, but one day I'll get round to it....for now, however, I'm going to stick with interviewing these amazing authors :).

Stay tuned for more info...

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Ah, sunny Sundays...

I feel like what with the weather getting warmer, I should be outside doing something active...instead I've spent all day inside in my hole, reading and watching TV.... occasionally taking breaks to see what's happening on Twitter/the blogosphere/shutting the curtains so the light doesn't interfere with the TV screen....

I've also added a few more notes to the story idea I wrote about yesterday...it seems as though I can go ages without thinking about it, but then I'll randomly start wondering how the story is going to unfold, and what this character will look like and what that other character will say in this particular scene etc etc...I actually have to force myself to STOP thinking about it, because I don't want to get too distracted from my other stories/coursework! I'm really looking forward to seeing how it turns out though...it might, just might be the beginning of a brand new series...but we'll have to wait and see...

What about you? Have you ever thought of a story idea and had to actually stop thinking about it, because you've got too much to think about already??

Also, I have an exciting announcement to make this evening...tune in later when I'll be revealing the author for my first ever Authonomy interview :)! Eek, so excited to be saying this :)!! I shall reveal all later....


Saturday, 25 February 2012

Here we go again...

So, I should be doing coursework. And I will start it....just not right now....ahem...

Instead of doing work, I got a bit distracted by, yup, that's right ANOTHER new story idea.

Don't get me wrong, I love thinking of plot lines/wondering if it can be made into a novel/scribbling it down to remember for later, it's just incredibly frustrating that I can't actually start any of these new ideas yet, because I've got so many others that I'm currently working on!

One day I'll be able to sit down and write for a living, and when that time comes, I can take my time thinking about each story idea and deciding which ones are worth pursuing. It'll take me a while, but I'll be happy knowing that I'll actually have the time to write each one properly.

And if you're thinking, hang on, why not just sit down and bang them all out now? Here's why - because I refuse to sit down and write a book a day, unlike some self-published 'authors' I could mention - because the end result will be a poor, shoddy piece of work that won't make sense and will need an unbelievable amount of editing to make it worthy of publishing (if it's even worth publishing). I want to take my time with my ideas, think them through properly and make sure that there's actually a story there. So many times I've written down a story idea to use for later, but deep down I know that it's not worth it. Sad, but it's all part of being an author - using your own judgement to decide which ideas are or are not good enough to spend time and effort writing.

So how about you? Do you ever think of an idea, but either scrap it later on or do you manage to work it into your novel somehow?

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Another day, another post...

So I don't really have a topic for this post...again, it's just a general whine/ramble...you know you love it really...

I should be doing work - I found out yesterday that my lecture I should have this afternoon got cancelled, which immediately made me think 'hooray! I'll have more time to do work tomorrow!'...which was a good thing cos I wasted two hours yesterday talking to the man who came to install our new exercise machine and although I didn't get any work done, he did give me some amazing story ideas...

Anyway, I did do a lot of uni work yesterday, but I've got a LOT still to do, but I'm in that mood where I really cba! All I've done so far this morning is lurk on authonomy, write a review and found some more books to back...as well as obsessively checking twitter every 5 minutes and tweeting random crap.

I know I say this every time I post, but I honestly cannot wait until I can make writing my full-time job - then I needn't feel guilty whenever I write a chapter of my novel instead of doing coursework, and I can blog about something interesting instead of whining about stated coursework! Still, that day will come soon enough...it'll actually be pretty scary when I finally finish education forever and I'm thrown out into the big bad world of work!

Have a good day, folks!


Tuesday, 21 February 2012

You've been tagged!...ahem...

So, it's been a while since I've been in the blogosphere properly (in the blogosphere? On the blogosphere? Who knows), but I'm delighted to find that I have a whole six followers to this blog :)! Hooray for social networking!

Anywho, Julia Salyer was kind enough to tag me in one of her posts, so, here are my answers to her questions :)!:

  • What is the nicest thing someone has ever done for you?....the Other Half is continually nice to me, but he once booked a surprise trip to London, just for the hell of it :).
  • Who is your favorite author? Oh dear, this is a tough one! I'm gonna have to say J.R.R. Tolkien!
  • If you could travel anywhere in the world, all expenses paid, where would it be? Australia, New Zealand, then hope across the pond and travel right across America.
  • What's one addiction you have? Tea!
  • What is your favorite time of day? Sunset/Night time :)
  • Favorite food? Cake!
  • What inspires your writing the most? Music :) - and my weird dreams lol
  • What is one pet peeve you have? Cyclists - STOP RUNNING RED LIGHTS!
  • If you could have a super power what would it be? Does Wolverine's claws/healing ability count as a superpower??
  •  Do you have a pet? At my parent's house I do - Bess, our annoying little wired haired fox terrier :). Oh, plus 80 cows, 20 calves and 7 cats :)
  •  If you had to change your name, and pick it, what would you change it to? I quite like my name...despite the fact that I constantly get people asking me if Robert Pattinson is my brother....but I like the name Rae! (...and no, he isn't, in case you're wondering ;) ).

  • So there you have it! A small insight into me and my loves/hates :)! I'm gonna give this a whirl now, and try and tag people to answer my questions :)!...but I'll probably do it wrong lol....here's my chosen bloggers:

    1. Jessica Salyer
    2. Murees Dupe (apologies for the no accent - I don't know how to get it!!)
    3. Emma Lauren
    4. Misha Gericke
    And your questions....

    • Tea or coffee?
    • What is your favourite childhood book?
    • Cats or dogs?
    • What is your favourite film?
    • Roses or lilies?
    • If you were stuck on a desert island, what three things would you take with you, and why?
    • Chocolate or crisps?
    • What kind of topping do you like on your pancakes?
    • Flora or fauna?
    • What is your favourite film adaption of a book?

    Happy blogging :)! I'm looking forward to seeing all your answers :)!

    Wednesday, 15 February 2012

    A Little Good Morning Post...

    Just thought I'd write this before I get cracking with my business of the day...coursework.

    Everything seems to be kicking up a gear atm - but strangely, I'm not panicking as much as I was. Maybe it's because on Monday, I sat down and literally spent the whole day focusing on uni work, so I feel like I've made a little progress at least. It's not just that though - I very stupidly thought it would be a good idea to start my Authonomy account and this blog right in the middle of all my most important deadlines, as well as returning to writing my novel (what can I say? Joining Authonomy and reading author's tweets on Twitter really inspired to get back into it!). However, I think I'm very VERY slowly finding a balance between life, work and play. It's just a question of keeping that balance and letting myself get utterly stressed out by everything!

    In other news, I got a message asking if I'd like to do my very first book swap today on Authonomy :)! Going to be completely honest....not entirely sure what that means, but I assume it's where I put the other person's book on my shelf and read/review it....should probably look into that.

    A small note about my reviewing/interviewing idea: it's definitely still happening, but as I keep saying, I probably won't be able to get the ball rolling on that for a few weeks at least. In the meantime, I'm checking out books and authors on Authonomy (no...I'm not stalking them...ahem...) and my watchlist keeps growing bigger, so when I do finally begin, at least I know I've got a good selection to choose from :)!

    Have a good day everyone!


    Tuesday, 14 February 2012

    Rise and Shine...

    I'm still trying to get used to my new wake-up time of 7am (thank you, Other Half), and so far, although it still takes me a while to get going in the mornings, I am finding that I'm getting more done with my day. Take yesterday for example: I got up, had breakfast, showered, did housework and then sat down at my laptop and only moved when I had to go into town mid-morning. Came back, sat back down at the laptop, and that was basically my day.

    I can't wait until the day when I can say, 'look, LOOK- I WROTE 70,000 WORDS YESTERDAY, HOORAY FOR ME!', or 'just finished another draft of XXX! Off to send it to my editor now!', or even 'publication date for XXX confirmed! Tune in tomorrow, when I'll be revealing the amazing cover artwork!'

    Instead, I have to content myself with slogging through all my coursework, and snatching bits of time here and there to write feverishly. That's what happened yesterday - I spent three quarters of my day working on various pieces of coursework, and then at night, I finally got the chance to work on my novel (although I did get that little voice in my head which started saying in a seductive voice, 'look, Rachel, another story idea....why don't you do this instead...?' and I had to say "DAMN YOU! I'M WORKING ON THIS NOVEL RIGHT NOW! GET BACK IN YOUR BOX AND LEAVE ME ALONE!!")

    Ahem...point of the story is - someday soon, I'll be able to write about more interesting things than uni work....until then, you'll have to be content with my moaning/rambling for a little while longer :).

    Have a good day, folks!


    Sunday, 12 February 2012

    I had a dream...

    I actually meant to write this yesterday...but then I forgot...

    Anyway, the point of this was that I quite often get the ideas for my stories/novels from dreams (and yes, I did do this before a certain YA author did....) and on Saturday morning I woke up from a dream which, while I was dreaming it, I was convinced would make an amazing story.

    Now, thinking back, I can't remember a lot of it because it sucked. It was so weird and, well, dreamlike, that there was just no way it would've translated onto the printed page. Have you ever done that? While you were dreaming a dream, you thought it would make an amazing story, but once you woke up you realise that it was just a dream?

    I'll give you a very brief outline of what I can remember - in this dream there was a girl (obviously) and a guy (ditto) - the guy was sent to get the girl (I think he was going to kill her actually) because she had some kind of power but instead of hurting her, he saved her and they fell in love, got married and lived in a caravan. But the guy, named Pete, disappeared one day and it turned out that whoever wanted him to kill the girl caught him and killed him. The girl was heartbroken and swore revenge. (She might also have been pregnant. But that's way too twilight-esque for my liking. So I'm leaving it out.) This is about the point I woke up/can't remember anymore/it morphed into a different dream.

    Weird and wonderful, I know. But something did stick with me. Whenever I think about that girl and how much she loved Pete and how heartbroken she was when he died, it actually makes me feel sad still. Also, while I was dreaming, I remember thinking separately about how this would make a great YA trilogy - and I think may that's what's making me excited. I'm currently working on a book of short stories for my major project and my own YA stand-alone novel. I would absolutely love to write a YA series! And I think that, and the sense of a very strong female character, is what I need to take away from this dream. It's just a shame that I can't properly pursue my dream of writing until I finish my degree, but when I finish get the time to sit down and just write for the hell of it, I think I may keep the idea of a YA series in mind.

    Obviously the dream as a whole is pretty useless, but maybe if I re-think A LOT of it, and remember what Pete and the as-yet unnamed female character had, it might just make a passable novel/series....

    I'll keep you updated....if I remember...

    What about you? What stories have you written that have come from dreams? Have they worked well, or not?


    Hooray for Authonomy!..

    Okay, I'm just going to warn you that I'll probably be raving about the Authonomy site for a while, as I've just joined it and it's all still new and exciting to me...

    To all new/aspiring authors out there - if you're unsure of your work, or if you want some feedback on it, or if you just want to get out there and make new author friends, I cannot recommend Authonomy enough. It's a website by Harper Collins, where you can upload your novel, read and review other people's novels and talk to other authors on the forum. Also, if your novel is good enough (I don't know exactly how this process works, so bear with me) it can end up being reviewed by the good people at HC, and maybe even land you a book deal! (But I'd seriously research that....don't just take my word for it!)

    I know how scary it can be putting your 'baby' out there for all to see - but as an author, you've got to get used to people reading your work and, in most cases, giving you advice on how to improve it. It is hard. Believe me, I know. When I first uploaded one of my short stories to the site, I was terrified - what is everyone hated it? What if people told me it was utter rubbish and I should give up my dream of becoming an author?

    Even though I was so scared everyone would hate it, I did it anyway. Because I knew that my story was far from perfect, and I needed some constructive criticism to tell me which direction to go in. As an author, you have to be able to take a step back and say 'okay, what do I need to improve?' and it can be hard seeing your own mistakes when you're so involved with your novel....which is why Authonomy is such a fantastic site for authors.

    The first time I got an email telling me that someone had left a comment on my book, I immediately panicked. I was certain that they would hate it, and that they had said something incredibly mean about my work, which would make me cry. Luckily, that wasn't the case. The person who reviewed it had been so lovely - she said how much she had enjoyed it, and gave me a few tips on how to improve. The next person said the same - and although she had more to say on how I could improve it, I didn't mind. Because I knew that without that criticism, I wouldn't be able to improve as an author. And once she pointed out small mistakes (and in one case, a fairly big one), I knew exactly what to do to change my story.

    I am so grateful for everyone who has commented on my work so far, and I'm currently in the process of editing my story, complete with all the revisions people have suggested so far. I'm really looking forward to putting it back on the site and seeing what people have to say again. Although this is the internet, and you will get people who will slate your work just because they can hide behind a computer screen while they do it, for the most part authors on the Authonomy site genuinely want to help each other out. And I cannot thank them enough for all the help they've given me so far - both with suggestions for my book, and backing my idea to blog about Authonomy books on here.

    So what are you waiting for? Get over there, and start your own Authonomy journey!

    (Sorry, couldn't resist the ultimate cheesy line...)


    Saturday, 11 February 2012

    Study time...

    Afternoon, everyone!

    I just thought I'd let everyone know that I am still 100% dedicated to reading, reviewing and blogging about the amazing Authonomy books and their authors...however, uni deadlines are really starting to creep up on me, so I have to prioritise my studies at the moment! However, I'm aiming for it all to be up and running in a few weeks time, when my major project deadline has passed and I can finally breathe again!

    I've got a couple of ideas/suggestions for the first few titles that I'm going to review (and probably beg the authors to let me review them haha):

    Jinger Barley and the Murkle Moon - by Lucy Middlemass
    The Dark Citadel - by Jane Dougherty
    The Withering - by Joshua Jacobs
    The Revealing - by C.G. Harris

    So that should keep me going for a while!

    Will have something more interesting to say later, I promise...


    Thursday, 9 February 2012

    Oh, the joys of being a student...

    Literally feel sick thinking about the amount of coursework I have to do right now, so instead of actually cracking on with it, I thought I'd share my blog plans with you instead, dear readers :)!

    Firstly, I've put a post up on the Authonomy website, asking if anyone would mind if I read Authonomy books and then reviewed them on here, as well as on the site. I also thought, providing people were willing, I could then interview the authors about their books! Ta-da! Instant promotion! Obviously not the most original idea in the world, but if it gets people noticed, then that's all that counts!

    So, the plan is this - I shall select a book for the week, read it (hopefully :P) and review it here on Fridays. Providing authors on the authonomy site are as lovely jubbly as they seem (and they all really do seem lovely!), then I'm hoping to get an interview with them mid-week and it'll most likely be someone's book I've read/going to read in the future (or else none of this would make much sense really...). Then on Mondays/days when I'm not having a mental breakdown over uni work, I shall endeavour to lighten you your day with a piece of news from the publishing world/rambling on about nothing....you know you'll love it....

    Oviously all this depends on my mental/emotional state over aforementioned uni work, but that shouldn't be too much of an issue...who needs a degree anyway....



    Okay, I know that some people have been awake since about 4 or 5am, but I'm a student, and given that a typical student doesn't roll out of bed til at least 1pm, I think I've done rather well to get up at 7am for once! It's not like I've even got a morning lecture to go to....I just thought I'd get up and try and get something done with my day (until I leave for my afternoon lecture that is).

    Anywho, I thought I'd just pop in and say good morning :). I have been looking around for an interesting article/topic I can write on, and I'll probably write up a more interesting post later :).

    Have a good day, folks!


    Wednesday, 8 February 2012

    Hello there!

    So, I've finally joined the world of technology...kind of. Now, however, I have to find something interesting to say....

    Hi there! I'm Rachel, and I'm from 'sunny' England - oh the joys. I love reading, writing and drinking tea. If you're really interested in who I am, just have a look at my profile :). I'm currently writing a book of short stories, whilst trying to juggle uni coursework, and writing my debut novel (and in case you're wondering, the book of short stories is actually part of my coursework...so I'm allowed to leave all my other impending pieces of c/w to concentrate on writing...for a little while at least).

    Due to uni work/life in general, I'm hoping to update this AT LEAST twice a week, if not more. But that's the plan for now, to ease myself into the world of blogging...oh, but I'll probably be on twitter rather a lot...or at least until the novelty wears off...

    I think I should just reassure you all that this blog won't stay like this for long, in terms of background images/text etc - I'm currently working on the artwork for my book of short stories, and once it's done, I'm planning on using that instead - hooray!...providing of course, that I can figure out how to change the background....I'm hoping the website design module I'm currently taking will help me with that....

    So that's it really! Come and say hi - just leave me a comment, or tweet me, and I'll get back to you ASAP :)!

    Happy writing!