As a writer I'm always looking for ways to improve myself. So I thought I'd do a blog post on some of the things I'm doing, and also give a little insight into my writing process.
Firstly, writing's hard. Don't let anyone try and tell you anything different. I've always enjoyed writing from when I started to let my imagination loose as a child. Writing random stories about aliens invading, or knights slaying dragons, were just run of the mill for me. However, for anyone reading this that's actually tried writing a book (I bet there is a few) you'll agree that it's not easy. For me I have to be in the zone, completely in tune with the task in hand, and then the words just flow. People say that you should write every day, and that you should make it a habit. That way you're brain will get used to being most active at this time of day. I'd agree to a point it works, but life gets in the way sometimes and it's not always possible, so you have to have some flexibility.
For me, I write when I can. I work a full time job, and have a family at home. Thankfully I have a very loving girlfriend that's extremely supportive of my passion for writing, and encourages me to do so. I utilise the time at night, when the kids have gone to bed, and before we settle down to have our time together. If this is only for half an hour, then so be it, either way writing some words are better than writing none at all. This keeps my thoughts flowing and also keeps me in tune with the book itself.
The actual process of how I write is currently up for debate. I've always been someone that has an idea of what the story line will be, and then just starts tapping away on my laptop. This is classed by many as the wrong way to do things. The last three novellas that I have written have been done in this way. But.... as a writer (I still love to say that) I always want to improve myself, and my work. I've been doing more research now than I ever have been before, on what sort of things to look out for, tips and tricks when writing certain scenes, I listen to audiobooks when driving, and read a lot to. All of this is soaking into my brain and helping me become better at my creative trade.
Despite being half way through a sequel to one of my novellas, I'm now debating outlining it from start to finish - something I've never done before. Not starting the book again, but giving me a better idea about flow, plot outline, and some of the character stories throughout it. This will ultimately help, and mean that I don't have to keep referring back to a certain point of the book to make sure I've got something right. I'm also looking at gathering some beta readers for when it's done, contacting ARC reviewers, and making it available for pre order. All of this adds time onto the release date of the book (which I struggle with as I want it out there when it's finished), but in the end will make it better.
Basically, as a writer I'm never happy with what I do. I re read things over and over always finding something I want to change. I over think things in normal life, so imagine how much I do it with my writing! I think if I start to incorporate the above steps then this will not only make my writing better, but also will help me be able to spot things more as I'm going, thus improving me!
Anyway, I think that's enough information for one day. I hope that you'll continue to join me on this journey that I'm taking. Writing is not all about the money for me, it's a passion, a hobby that I enjoy doing and one that keeps the creative juices flowing. One day I will see something I've written in a book shop available to buy, or in a library for someone to check out. Hey, you've gotta have dreams right?