Apr 01

Camp NaNoWriMo 2019

Hello everyone,

No. This isn’t an April fool’s joke. I am taking part in Camp NaNoWriMo 2019.

Last November I took part in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and wrote 50000 words in thirty days. Camp NaNoWriMo works along the same lines. The main differences are that it takes place in April, you are placed in cabins with other writers and the rules for completion aren’t as strict.

Because of this last point I’m only writing 40,000 words this month which combined with the previous 50000 should put me at 90017 words (or there abouts). The reason I’m only doing 40,000 words this month is because, for the last week of April, I’m going on a Writing Retreat.

Similar to last year I will be spending a week on the south coast of England working on a writing project. This project isn’t the manuscript from NaNoWriMo (which I’m hoping to see finished by 2021/2022) but a screenplay for the BBC’s Writer’s room. Although I mostly write novels and short stories I also love screenplays and I’ve wanted to start work on this script for just over two years. I think that a week away is the perfect time to rattle out a first draft.

I’ll be posting updates on my Facebook Writer’s page (which you can reach by clicking anywhere in this sentence) of my process in Camp NaNoWriMo throughout April. If you’re also taking part, let me know and we can cheer each other on.

Best of luck to the other competitors.

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Mar 10

Five first drafts of famous characters

Last month I wrote two website posts on “Firsts”. They were first drafts of famous novels and first drafts of famous films which you can read by clicking on their titles. Whilst researching these articles I found so much interesting information that I had enough content for a third post. This will be the last of the “first” posts for a while and my next update should be more varied.

But for now here are five first drafts of famous characters. Enjoy!

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Feb 24

First drafts of famous films

Last time we looked at first draft of famous novels including Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. If you haven’t read that article, you can do do so by clicking here. Today we’re looking at the first draft of famous films!

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Feb 10

First drafts of famous novels

Before I published my first novel in September the pinned tweet on my Twitter account was

First drafts are allowed to suck.

I think that the point of a first draft is to exist so the author can improve upon it. Often than not the first draft is almost unrecognisable from the finished article. The first draft of Empty Nights, for example, featured a scene of my two protagonists train surfing out of London Bridge. When that idea is compared to the finished novel is seems completely ludicrous yet it was in the manuscript for several months before I removed it. Thankfully for me, other writer’s also had strange ideas in their first drafts. Continue reading

Jan 20

Five Fans who have directly influenced works

There has been, and forever will be, a unique and complex relationship between writers and their fans. A writer promises to create worlds and characters for the audience to cherish and promises to maintain the quality of their work, if not improve upon it. In return, fans promise to read the writer’s work and support them. However sometimes the world the author has established is changed by the fans either for better or for worse. Here are five fans who have directly influenced pieces of work.

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Jan 06

Spitfire Review: Doctor Who Series 11

Several years ago, I would write a review of the latest Doctor Who episode on my Facebook account shortly after the episode was broadcast. I remember feeling the need to voice my opinion on each episode, I’m not sure why. If I missed a status I would write two the following week. Whilst that habit died out when I started this website in 2015 I think that the most recent series, and the soft reboot of Doctor Who as a whole, is definitely worth talking about.

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Jan 01

2019 goals

Welcome to 2019!

2018 was a big year for me. As I said in my last post it was the best year of my life. So how am I going to top it this year? True, I’m not publishing a novel this year. I still don’t think I have the energy built up for another event like that but I do have several writing goals this year.

1. Empty Nights related events.

I remember that a friend of mine once said that you never stop promoting your novel and this is certainly true. I’m hoping to attend several literacy events across London to promote my work. It’s not something I’ve done before and it is most definitely outside my comfort zone. I’m also looking into publishing Empty Nights in an E-Book format this year. The details are to be confirmed but this will be broadcast on my social media platforms.

2. Holidays

Long time readers may remember that my goal in 2017 was to have two holidays, one to France and one to Spain. Sadly both holidays were cancelled but this year they have been re-booked!  This will be the first time I’m leaving the UK in six/seven years. I’m also having another Writing Retreat around Easter time to the south coast.

3 Complete a creative project

I spent all of last year writing and editing Empty Nights. As much as I enjoyed the process I want to take a break from novel writing and look at different mediums such as screenplays or stageplays. I’m aiming to look at these mediums during my writing retreat.

4. Submit short stories

Now that Empty Nights is published I’m able to return to several half finished short stories and begin several stories  that I’ve wanted to write for ages. Hopefully these will result in some competition wins.

5. NaNoWriMo 2019

Last year I entered NaNoWriMo 2018 and wrote 50,000 words of my next novel, Ghost Train.  This year I plan to do the same. I’m also thinking of entering Camp NaNoWriMo (which is set in June) where I can rack up another 50,000 if needed.

 

Those are my writing related goals of 2019. I’ll make another post in December 2019 to see which goals I achieved. What are your goals for this year? Let me know in the comments down below or on social media and I’ll see you next time. Take care.

 

Dec 09

Reflections on 2018

I had a conversation with my friends the other day about what the best and worst year of our lives were. My worst year was 2011. I was in sixth form, I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life, I had little plans for the future and the present consisted of me stuck in classes, many of which I had little or no interest in. Maybe a question on Mussolini’s rise to power might appear in a pub quiz one day… One benefit of this experience was that I used my memories of school misery in Empty Nights. My best year was 2012 which was also a great year for the UK overall. London hosted the 2012 Olympics. The Queen had her Diamond Jubilee and I left sixth form and started university.  2012 was the best of my life… until now.

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Dec 04

Brixton Book Jam 2018

Hello everyone,

Last night I read the opening chapter of Empty Nights at the Brixton BookJam.

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It was a fantastic evening. The organisers were brilliant, the crowd was fantastic and a great night was had by all. The Brixton BookJam is held on the first Monday of March, June, October and December. I recommend that you all come along to these nights as you’ll be supporting local writers. All of the speakers that spoke last night are listed below along with their websites. Be sure to check them out:

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Dec 02

Spitfire Review: Shakespeare’s Star Wars

The first Star Wars film that I watched was Episode Two: Attack of the Clones. It’s generally accepted that this is one of the weakest films in the franchise but I loved it! I was blown away in the cinema by the car chase on the city planet, I cheered when the Jesus looking Jedi performed a flying kick on some guy with a flamethrower and jet pack and I was literally opened mouthed when the little green crazy frog man started flipping and spinning against the evil posh person at the end of the film. Forgive me, I was only nine! By the time Revenge of the Sith was released in 2005 I considered myself a Jedi Master on my knowledge of the Star Wars universe.

My knowledge of Shakespeare, in comparison, is lacking. I have great respect for the Bard and I have enjoyed many of his plays (see my Shakespeare reviews here, here and here) but I couldn’t tell you the name of Juliet’s nurse where as I could tell what every button does on Darth Vader’s chest. I had just finished watching a gender reversed performance of Hamlet at Shakespeare’s Globe when I spotted this in the gift shop.

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William Shakespeare’s Star Wars by Ian Doischer Verily, A New Hope

I bought the book on a whim and didn’t consider reviewing it on my website. It was just a silly novelty, something you might receive as a Christmas present. The following morning, as I read the book on my commute to work I was pleasently suprised at how masterfully well written it was. I was so impressed that I ordered Book Five: The Empire Striketh Back and Book Six: The Jedi Doth Return and afterwards Book One: The Panthom of Mence, Book Two: The Clone Army Attacketh and Book Three: Tragedy of the Sith’s Revenge. Book Seven: The Force Doth Awaken and Book Eight: Jedi the Last have also been ordered.

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