Monday, 25 July 2011

pushing.... always pushing!


I've realised how much we try to cram in each day. Always there is something else to do, see, ignore. Sometimes we are so busy, we need to shout-loudly- HEY Stop. Stop the roller coaster, and let me off. Please, just for a wee while let me just 'be'. Smell the daisies, enjoy the silence, experience the small things, do something just for ourself. Stop pushing!

This is a reaction to my deal with myself today. If I do some ironing I will then write. this is my incentive, and also my get off the roller coaster point. Writing, relaxes me-not. Writing pleases me even when it infuriates me. my characters are part of me, when I finish a M/S I'm lost until the next characters start nagging at me to tell their stories. I daren't count how many notebooks, sticky notes, scraps of paper I keep where I have jotted down lines, plots and machinations I want to remember.

We have had a day or two (Well remember this IS Scotland) of sunshine, so my other indulgence came to the fore- reading. With no guilt trip for ignoring other things. I have decided life is to enjoy. there are things we MUST do (like the ironing), but to be true to ourselves, we HAVE to enjoy the gift of life given to us.

True Raven Ramblings today, I know, but I'm happy with today's meandering mind. I've done some ironing, will do some more later, and now am going to indulge my latest characters, and move them on a bit. Because we are forecast sun this afternoon, and there's a good book waiting to be read. and a deck chair with my name on it!

Enjoy YOUR time, be it 2 minutes or 2 hours!

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

stuck in the middle with you??

Not quite, but with apologies to Steelers Wheel, it's a good hook. Really it should just say stuck. I've started my latest M/S. I love the ideas, have got the timeline plotted, the plot sorted, and it should be all systems go.

But it isn't, and I don't really know why.

I like my heros, think the heroine should be (maybe that's part of the problem.... 'should' not 'is'?) a feisty lady, and their story is to me, spot on. But I'm really struggling to get it as I want it.

Maybe that's also the problem. As I want it, not as they know it? I don't know about you, but my characters can, at times, tell me very forcibly, what they want, isn't what I want! And they win.

So perhaps, I'll just go with the flow for a while, and let them tell me their story, rather than me telling them!

Watch this space.

Saturday, 16 July 2011

the next bit

Still riding high here.
 I finally finished To Please A Lady (Well it was going yo be called The Man In Grey, but it didn't really fit.) Thanks Doris for coming up with the name. Doris and I had a great brainstorming session, and both of us ended up with an outline for a story. So to stop digressing, I've sent TPAL to MLEJ (Keep up, To Please a Lady and My Lovely Editor Jackie) to give me her verdict. Fingers x'd, because to tell the truth, I like it EVEN more than 'Wallflowers', and that's saying something, because oh boy do I ever like 'Wallflowers'.
To make a week that started good, went bad, when dearmac got a supersensitive touchpad and had to go to the appleshophospital to be fixed, got better when the great guys at applestoreglasgow fixed it for me there and then, (thanks guys), get EVEN better; I got the cover art email for 'Wallflowers'. Filled it in with quivering fingers (thank goodness for new touchpad, I don't think the old one was supersensitive, just kn****red due to overuse :) ) and sent it back.
Now, I really do think this amazing, brilliant, fabulous, next stage of my life is all systems go!

So here I am, sitting in my room at the Hotel Missoni, Edinburgh, (ahem, not really name-droppimg), looking out on a very wet Royal Mile. Even at this time of the morning there's people-and umbrellas-out, with a wine-induced headache. We went to The Castle Terrace Restaurant, chef Tom Kitchen's latest (I think) place. OH MY. AMAZING. Fabulous food, and wait for it, lovely warm Gluten Free bread, and they adapted every course I chose to G-F for me. The G and T's and wine were equally as good, hence the headache! Ah well, will be walking a lot today, so the fresh (wet) air will help it it go! (B T W, why after I ate like crazy last night, is my tummy rumbling?)

Now:- back to my time line...... As told to me by MLEJ.

August 15th... 'Wallflowers Don't Wilt', goes to be finally checked etc by the proof reader/copy writer-think thats her title-to pick up anything we've missed. Another thought- isn't it weird how you (and others for you) can check, and recheck a M/S, think it's fine, and when you change it into another format, you see such glaring mistakes? I loaded 'Wallflowers' onto my Kindle to re-read and had to do an 'oh sorry, look what I've found' email to mlej.

September 2nd... M/S goes to publishers

October 7th... Wallflowers Don't Wilt, by Raven McAllan is published by Breathless Press.

Has a nice ring to it doesn't it?

I need a coffee... and a paracetamol!

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

This is where I freak out............

run around shouting YES, YES, oh YEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSS.

No I'm not doing a Meg Ryan (Well not at the moment anyway) I have been given a date for Wallflowers Don't Wilt to be published

Diaries out, pens, laptops, I-phones at the ready...... October 7th. (2011) Thats only 8 weeks today.... (not that I'm counting or anything)

I really still need pinching to believe it.

Here's my 5 line blurb. What do you think?

 Wallflowers Don’t Wilt
Sappho following, pinky linking, convention defying, ton scorning, Arabella, Lady Dunsmuir and Serena, Lady Saltsey are about to fulfill their long held ambitions and live the life they desire-together!

How will Ivo, Lord Daranton prove to them, that their ambitions will be for naught, unless he be included-in EVERY way imaginable?

By showing them what they will be missing!

Monday, 11 July 2011

I got the tissues out

Really, truly, honestly. I had a good old sniffle yesterday.

All due to the great girls-ladies-nutters-encouragers-bulliers-you name it, fellow members of my crit group. Up and Coming Writers. To have a group of friends like these gals is more than you could ever hope for.

Everyone is so supportive, so genuinely pleased for me, that as I typed a thank you to them, I started to well up (Darn, am at it again). We are all striving towards the same goal, to be published. some are there, some are almost there, all will get there! But whist on their individual journeys, they are all helping me on mine. And that is amazing. Even to putting aside their own work to help me edit, think of words and just to push me over whatever hurdle I had baulked at. We ALL do this for each other, and it is a precious thing, above all else.

I bet when we all think about it there is someone-someones-who are there for us. Unconditionally. And we frequently forget this, until, when the chips are down, there they are. But to have twenty-odd is amazing. as we frequently say to each other, you rock!


Let's continue all our journeys together!

Sunday, 10 July 2011

and so:- the fun begins

I've had an email from the lovely Jackie... She's reading and getting stuck into Wallflowers Don't Wilt. This really is it, I'm going to be busy this week.

Excited, scared, worried, freaking, you name it. This is really a journey of discovery for me. All new, all exciting and yes, all a bit worrying. Like what if- I can't do what's wanted?  Don't understand? Catch Chicken Pox? Win The lottery? (memo to self-buy a ticket.)

O.K. now I've chilled. Really, I'm looking forward to whatever Jackie throws at me. It's a challenge, one I'm well up for. It's been my goal to get published before a big '0' birthday in December, and it looks as if I might do it.

So many of us (me included) say, "oh yeah, I'd love to write, if only (Usually a sigh here) I had the time." Well folks, time has to be found and used wisely. It's amazing what you can do with five minutes here and there.

I'm always plotting in my head- always have done. But now I've actually got on with it and written those thoughts down. And boy weren't they awful at first. I entered the new voices Harlequin competition last year, and my effort was terrible. Stilted, unoriginal and yup, boring. But I met my crit group through that, and with their bullying er sorry encouragement, here I am. In fact, Wallflowers Don't Wilt is really down to them and a dare. They dared me to write it and I did. Then they encouraged me to send it to BREATHLESS PRESS and I did. And there's a story there as well...

So, only 5 weeks later... here I am waiting to see what needs to be done, so you can all read it. Watch this space!

Friday, 8 July 2011

where do you stop?

NO, not like that!

Chapter wise.

Do you stop writing at the end of a chapter? Or do you like me, just have to write the start of the next, even if it is just one sentence?

It's a bit like your lucky earring, or always putting the same shoe on first. It's my 'luck'. I know then, when I get back to the M/S, I'll be able (Fingers x'd here for tempting fate) to pick up where I left off.

How about you?