Why yes I have just finished Stephen King’s Memoir of the craft, thanks for asking. Personally I think it was okay, had some nice tips on the craft itself, but at fifteen years old, it is beginning to show its age. Not a bad thing, but the publishing industry is not what it was fifteen years ago.

Considering I’ve been doing NaNoWriMo and had the goal of getting myself published for a while now, I’m not quite sure what’s changed to make me knuckle down and really concentrate on getting my current novel edited and reviewed to potentially go out to people. I’m a way off sending it to publishers, but I do want to see it get there eventually.

It might be because through the a to z challenge I have found the blog of loads of other writers out there and have renewed my determination to write.

It might be because one of those writers encouraged me to go out and buy Writing Magazine, which not only has great articles in it, but loads of writing competitions, which I think is a great way to start submitting things for review.

It might be because a friend of mine pointed me at another competition where you can win mentorship and writing classes as the prize instead of money. I am really interested in this competition, since it’s run in conjunction with the local writing centre and a website called Ideas Tap (for creative people in the UK, sorry America but I think you have tons of stuff over the pond) and you can submit anything from a short story to an extract in any genre. It’s what I’m working on at the moment – combing through all the stuff I’ve written and seeing if I can find a bit which I really think showcases what I can do. Definitely going to edit it before submitting, but I’ve got to find something of appropriate length (2,000 words) before I can do that.

Either way, I seem to have found more enthusiasm for writing, which is great and exactly what Camp NaNoWriMo was meant to do. Or at least the month of April was meant to do, and it’s worked!

As an add on to the latest Writing Magazine, there was a book: Kick start your creativity in seven days. It’s got some writing exercises in there which I will be doing over the course of the next week. Here’s the first:

Day 1 Exercise – Your Surroundings

My feet are resting on the table, having shoved aside empty packets of sweets and used plate with chinky cutlery that should have been placed in the kitchen. My own drink sits to the left of my, just out of reach of my arms, but that’s what I get for sitting in the comfy sofa.

Going beyond the table, I see my three house mates lined up on the other side of the room. One is on the xbox, and is lounging in his chair in a relaxed position with controller dangling from one hand.

The next is laid out on the sofa, still having  to keep her leg up with the plushest cushion shoved under it. She’s got her laptop out and is bubbling over with her ideas about what she’s working on, various words float over to me as the discussion turns to dinner.

The third is staring intently at his monitor, having moved his behemoth of a desktop in here to be ‘sociable’ with the rest of us. Either that or his desk got shaky enough to necessitate moving away from it. He’s clicking and furiously tapping the keyboard. I think he’s dying in his game, or rather attempting not to.

A flash of my wriggling toes draws my attention to them. It’s possibly my odd socks that draw my attention to them, or maybe it’s just because I like the feeling of cloth on my toes so much that I need to watch it as well as feel it.