Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Me and reading

Reading has been one of my favourite hobbies since I was a child at primary school. I remember being part of a reading group at school. We sat round a table in a separate room, reading our books, usually Janet and John. I can picture it now. I think it must have been in the library because I can visualise books on movable shelves at the side of the room. We would read out loud, and much to my parents' shock this carried on into home. lol. I had to read in another room when I did read. Thankfully, it didn't last and I soon read books silently to myself. I read Mr Men, Noddy, to Secret Seven and Famous Five, to horsey adventure books. Later on I went to the library and remember reading Catherine Cookson and Lena Kennedy.

I still read a lot, but both adult and children's fiction because I now write mainly for children. I also read women's magazines because I want to write stories for them, too. Oh, and yes, I do read silently still. The only time I would read aloud is when I read my stories for consistency, and then I have to be on my own.

So, do you remember reading at school? What did you read?

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Me, Asperger's and parks

I remember when I was little and used to go to the park with my family. I only went on certain play apparatus. I hated going on the roundabout because I feared that I would get off at the wrong time and fall and hurt myself. I never could judge when to get off. It also made me dizzy. I hated going on slides, too, cos of the heights, and again falling and hurting myself. The one thing I didn't mind was the swings, but I didn't want to go too high because of the height and the fear of falling. We used to have a swing in the garden. First it was a normal swing but later on it became a tyre, which was fun. It all went old and rusty, and we got rid of it years ago. There was one thing I do remember I liked in parks, which you don't see nowadays, do you remember the drinking taps? You either pressed or pushed on a button or lever and the water would spurt out, and you would have to put your mouth under it to catch the water. I liked that. Probably against hygiene rules now, though.

So, when you were little and visited parks, were there apparatus that you avoided? Why? Be interested to know.

These memories will appear in a memoir I plan to write later on sometime.

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Writing goals - the latest

So, how are my writing goals going.

If I remember last time, I said that I wasn't going to write pocket novels anymore, and that is still the case. I am sticking to writing magical realism for adults, and my children's books as well as short stories for women's magazines (womags).

I have finished the third book in the new children's series of books called 'The Rainbow School'. The first one, Billy, is still with my illustrator to do the cover and internal chapter headings. I hope to publish it this month so I can order copies in time for its book launch on 1 October.

Later this week I shall start planning and writing the final story in my adult magical realism series 'Geraldine's Gems'. I've already visualised some scenes so have an idea what happens in it and how it will end. I hope to get that all done and published by end of November, esp for Xmas.

Short stories - they are still a work in progress. My latest efforts need more thought and effort put into them, esp how the characters move from scene to scene or stage directions as they have been called. I have put them aside for now and have been working on another story intended for Woman's Weekly. It is the story I wrote the start and end to at the last workshop with WW I went to about writing stories with a twist so this is a warm twist in the tale.

Once I have finished that one, I am going to rewrite a story that WW rejected last year, turning it into a twist story, then will be a story for Take a Break's Fiction Feast. After that we shall see. I won't be having 5 published this year, which was my goal, realistically I will now aim for just one. I have one story still with TaBFF, so we shall see.

So, they are my goals for now. Hope yours are going as well as mine.

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Me, Asperger's and Library Events

Last Saturday I took part in the local community library's grand sale. I was hoping to sell a book or two of mine. I set up a table in the library, next to an older woman who was selling her hand-made jewellery. I got chatting to her about selling. Then came along a younger woman who started talking to me about her writing and asked me to have a read of what she had written. I agreed. Seeing her with the main librarian I know, I realised she had been the lady that had already been mentioned to me. In a break, I read what she had written, and said she had good ideas (she writes fantasy for teens) and needed to write more for me to have a good read of it. I have since decided I do like what she has written, it will be fun to help her write it and want to be her coach. It being a warm day, I later decided to join the jewellery lady outside, which is by a park. We got chatting again outside, and I also chatted to the lady opposite me who was selling home-made natural salts.

So, how did this affect my Asperger's? Well, I think it helped me. I got talking to others whom I hadn't met before, because we were all selling things and trying to get customers. It helped me get out of the house and meet people. Inside the library wasn't too bad, although when children came in it did get a bit noisy but outside where it's more open and bigger was better.

I did sell books - the main librarian returned from a break at her house, and bought a copy of each of my paperback for the library.

I will probably take part in their Xmas fayre in December, if they still have one.

Me, Asperger's and Library Events

Last Saturday I took part in the local community library's grand sale. I was hoping to sell a book or two of mine. I set up a table in the library, next to an older woman who was selling her hand-made jewellery. I got chatting to her about selling. Then came along a younger woman who started talking to me about her writing and asked me to have a read of what she had written. I agreed. Seeing her with the main librarian I know, I realised she had been the lady that had already been mentioned to me. In a break, I read what she had written, and said she had good ideas (she writes fantasy for teens) and needed to write more for me to have a good read of it. I have since decided I do like what she has written, it will be fun to help her write it and want to be her coach. It being a warm day, I later decided to join the jewellery lady outside, which is by a park. We got chatting again outside, and I also chatted to the lady opposite me who was selling home-made natural salts.

So, how did this affect my Asperger's? Well, I think it helped me. I got talking to others whom I hadn't met before, because we were all selling things and trying to get customers. It helped me get out of the house and meet people. Inside the library wasn't too bad, although when children came in it did get a bit noisy but outside where it's more open and bigger was better.

I did sell books - the main librarian returned from a break at her house, and bought a copy of each of my paperback for the library.

I will probably take part in their Xmas fayre in December, if they still have one.

Me, Asperger's and Library Events

Last Saturday I took part in the local community library's grand sale. I was hoping to sell a book or two of mine. I set up a table in the library, next to an older woman who was selling her hand-made jewellery. I got chatting to her about selling. Then came along a younger woman who started talking to me about her writing and asked me to have a read of what she had written. I agreed. Seeing her with the main librarian I know, I realised she had been the lady that had already been mentioned to me. In a break, I read what she had written, and said she had good ideas (she writes fantasy for teens) and needed to write more for me to have a good read of it. I have since decided I do like what she has written, it will be fun to help her write it and want to be her coach. It being a warm day, I later decided to join the jewellery lady outside, which is by a park. We got chatting again outside, and I also chatted to the lady opposite me who was selling home-made natural salts.

So, how did this affect my Asperger's? Well, I think it helped me. I got talking to others whom I hadn't met before, because we were all selling things and trying to get customers. It helped me get out of the house and meet people. Inside the library wasn't too bad, although when children came in it did get a bit noisy but outside where it's more open and bigger was better.

I did sell books - the main librarian returned from a break at her house, and bought a copy of each of my paperback for the library.

I will probably take part in their Xmas fayre in December, if they still have one.

Monday, 18 July 2016

Wrtiing a story with a twist at Woman's Weekly

On Friday 8 July I went to London Bridge to a Woman's Weekly workshop on how to write a story with a twist ending. I went because I had no idea how to write one or where to get ideas for one.

The two presenters were Fiction Editor, Gaynor Davies, and author, Della Galton.

Della said that twist endings mustn't be predictable or contrived eg character winning the lottery, or having an aunt giving them an inheritance.

She gave us a list of dos and don'ts for these stories. One do is that the story has to build up to the twist.

We had an exercise in the morning, to write an outline for a story. I thought of a story I had in mind to write for another magazine. So I wrote a twist outline for that. I also got an idea for another twist story which I wrote down and will probably write another time. Once time was up, we were asked to read them out loud. My heart went fast at this and for one moment I thought I was going to faint, but I was OK in the end and read out my outline, which was said was good.

Della then read a story in the WW Summer Special (which I later bought and read), which gave me the idea for the twist ending of my story.

You can write an outline for a story which has lots of possible endings. The character and conflict of the story has to be at the start.

We were given a list of types of 'Twists'.

We were given another exercise to write the ending of our story then read it out. I offered to read mine first, to get it out of the way. Was told it was good. During the day, Gaynor told me I am learning. Praise indeed.

I really enjoyed this workshop. It gave me another idea for a twist story for a story that I have already written. I did ask if I could resubmit a story with another ending, and Gaynor said yes, as long as it's not too regonisable. So that is what I plan to do.

I am working on a story for WW now, not a twist one, a normal one, but I plan to rewrite this and send it to another magazine as a twist, which I have worked out.