My debut fantasy novel, The Archguardians of Laceria, is now available in paperback, and in all ebookstores!

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Busy, Busy, Busy!

   It's been a whole week since I last blogged! I've been super busy, in my defence, what with promoting my raffle and preparing to set up my art exhibit tomorrow, and I tell you I'm petrified. I've been working on it for the past 18 months, so it's been a really long time in coming, but now that it's so close, the necklaces are finished and I've sawn up all of the wood for the display cases, I'm suddenly realising that it's just a couple of days away. When did that happen?! So I'm extremely nervous.
   But because it's been in preparation for so long, I've not devoted much energy to it. That's not to say I've made rubbish pieces, but rather it means I've spread the work over the last year and a half so successfully that I've not felt very burned out. But it has meant that there were no new jars in my shop for about a year which is far, far too long for releasing new stock. So of course I was really pleased when I finished and was finally able to make 10 new pieces and open up a Multiple Sclerosis charity raffle, which is something I've wanted to do for a really long time.


   But speaking of devoting energy, my passion for fitness has become a little too much of an obsession. I feel immensely guilty for eating a single marshmallow even if I've been eating perfectly for days, and that guilt leads me to do about 20 minutes of Pilates 30 minutes later to burn it off. It's getting absolutely ridiculous and it's wearing me out physically and mentally. I'm not sure when or how it started, but I've realised, in part, that it's because I think about it all far too much. I worry, I fret, I obsess, and it means I can't enjoy a small treat without feeling like I have to run laps around the park.
   The best way to fix it is to simply direct my energy elsewhere. It will keep me from thinking about food unless I'm actually hungry, and it will also keep me from obsessing and doing spontaneous additional exercise. Over-exercising is not good and it can make your real workout's efforts obsolete. Doing too much can be as effective as doing nothing at all if you're not giving your body the chance to recover.

   So, like I said, I need to direct my energy elsewhere, and, fortunately, the answer to that question popped up a few days ago.
   Remember I told you I finally finished writing my book and that now I need to revise the whole thing - read it through, tweak it, correct it and completely change parts of it? It's a long process. But I had already decided that reading the thing through as a whole would have to wait. The summer holidays are almost upon us and reading the book through will take a while with the changes that need to be made, and with all the noise in the park outside my house during that period I won't be able to concentrate. So I'd already decided that I was going to put off actually reading it until September because the noise was due to start early this month with the GCSE students being released from their cages early to 'revise' (which usually means sitting in the park blaring their awful music through bad-quality speakers from mid afternoon until about 10pm, swearing loudly every five seconds), but I admit that it has yet to begin. I'm grateful, but the summer holidays start in about 2 weeks now, so even if I had started reading it through the moment I'd finished, with the massive changes that needed to be made, I wouldn't be anywhere near finished by this point and would have to stop prematurely - stopping half way through for a month means that making sure it flows and makes sense as a whole book is quite difficult.
   But I did decide that I could go ahead with the big changes, the parts that stood out in my mind as needing changing/removing either because I've decided I'm not happy with them or because the book changed a little along the way and they were made irrelevant. So I began that task about a week ago. Each of the bits I've changed so far have taken me longer than expected, so if I had gone ahead and started reading I would have to have stopped for several hours a number of times to make these big changes regardless of silence outside - two of the changes even took me 2 days! So I'm glad I did it the way I have.
   I still have a lot more to change, lots of little things but a few more big things, too, but I have to admit that, while I was dreading going back over it and making these changes because it was a more technical task than a creative one, I'm actually really enjoying it! One such change was introducing a character earlier on than I originally had, and it was amazing to go back and see him and others again! Characters change gradually based on experiences just like any normal person would, be it a drastic change following a big event, or just a build up of tension and irritability - or the opposite. So going back and seeing the characters as the readers would first see them, rather than how I now know them, is pretty awesome. In short: I'm loving it.


   I also admit that I've been playing World of Warcraft a lot more lately, since Patch 6.2 came out I've been doing the daily quests in Tanaan somewhat religiously to get the corrupted dreadwing mount, which I now have, and then I moved on to level my fishing, get Nat Pagle in my garrison and try to get the mounts from the frostdeep cavedweller. I've never fished in real life before and I want to try it, but fishing in WoW is surprisingly addictive and surprisingly relaxing. My hands are kept busy but my mind can wander, and in that time I've come up with a few ideas for my next book which is exactly what I need right now. I might be loving rereading my current book, but the story has finished and I'm going to need to make sure I have a plan ready to start on (probably in January since I won't finish with this book any sooner than October, and then Christmas sales will begin) by the time I finish so I don't get all down in the dumps with nothing to work on.


   So I've been keeping busy, to say the least! And I've been rewatching Stargate while tweaking my book - Seeg caught me smiling happily the other day for no apparent reason, but it was because I was thinking how much I was looking forward to watching it and working with a cup of tea. It's the little things - learn to love the little things and you'll lead a ridiculously happy life!
   Normal posting will resume presently.



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