Truth Be Told

Beat down a path to me, 

and I shall roll down and concede,

Because in truth,

I’ve been waiting all my life

for a boy like you.

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A Twist in the Plot

Recently, it has come to my attention that plot twists are not my strong point. This got me thinking about whether a twist is absolutely necessary for a good story. Don’t get me wrong, a twist in the plot can make a good story better but I don’t think it’s strictly necessary. The thriller genre is an exception to this rule, a thriller with no twists would be quite dull, but I am no thriller writer! I almost feel that short stories are too short for a substantial twist as there is not a big enough word count to build up to them. There is of course the surprise ending but that’s a whole different story! Maybe, as I work on my novel I will find that twists naturally emerge when I have more words to play with. Talking of which, I feel as though it’s about time to make a start on my novel. I could always do more planning but planning is a dangerous thing, it would be easy to plan for a year and get no writing at all done. I’ve never been a fan of the plan and have been relieved to read recently that many writers like to start writing with barely any plan at all. I feel that the best plan is one that comes from the writing itself. The characters tend to tell the story themselves if you let them. It is for this reason that I am going to do brief character sketches and then make a start! Very excited about that journey!

Olivia x

A Low Moment

The arrival of my monthly magazine has brought with it the confirmation that I have not been successful with my competition entry. This has left me swamped with bad feelings about EVERYTHING. I know these rejections are just a fact of the writing life but that doesn’t stop me dwelling in the bog of dissatisfaction. Tonight, I feel as though everything I have ever written is of poor and boring quality. Where is my character development? Where is my gripping plot? Nowhere, that’s where. I am unable to judge whether this feeling of failure comes simply from my disappointment or whether there is truth to my worries. I intend to spend the evening reading the winning entries and sulking. On a brighter note, here is a piece I have begun about the end of the world (obviously an overwritten subject but one I felt I should play about with anyway).

When the planets align, the world will end. That is what was predicted and now we know it will happen. I have been sat in the darkness for at least a day now, just waiting for this to be over. My hands are shaking from the hunger and the cold but I dare not move from the mattress that has become my home. I gain comfort in knowing that the whole world is underground with me, even though I can’t see them. I cannot believe this day has come. I remember when we used to talk about this in school, joking about what we would be doing right at our last moments. We never knew then that the gospels were true. If that were the case, we wouldn’t have been laughing. The warning came only yesterday evening. Slipped among the news of petrol shortages and celebrities was the statement that the world was soon to end. I laughed with shock when I heard, staring into the face of the newsreader as she continued as though nothing out of the ordinary had happened. The world has always been full of half-truths and cover-ups but this is one story they couldn’t gloss over.

Olivia x

Sunshine predicament

The appearance of the sunshine has reminded me of a common problem I have every year. I find it impossible to write outside. So many writers speak of the inspiration that comes to them when they write outside but I’m the complete opposite. There are two main reasons I can think of for this. Firstly, outside is full of the worst distractions, what with all those bees,  butterflies and noises, my mind finds it impossible to get into that creative space. Secondly, it beats me how anyone can write when the sun’s beating off of the computer screen and making it impossible to see anything! I wish I were one of those that worked best in the sunshine. I find that my avoidance of writing outside means that I get very little done when the sun is out. Who wants to sit in a dingy room at a computer screen when they could be led in the garden with a good book? I suppose it’s just another of my many excuses for not writing, but it’s a pretty valid one. I am also ashamed to say that I have a habit of needing the television on when I’m writing. It’s not a case of watching it because I’ll put on a program and find I haven’t seen any of it, it’s just a comfort thing. Silence doesn’t seem to inspire my writing strangely enough. This may be another factor as to why, outside with no television, I struggle. For whatever reason, my best writing is definately done during winter. Nevermind, off I go to enjoy the sunshine!!!

Olivia x

The thing with technology

Christmas last year brought with it a beautiful typewriter. I have always wanted a typewriter and was so pleased with this gift. I am ashamed to say however that three months later, I have written very little on this beauty. My want for a typewriter stemmed from the fact that I found it very difficult to write on a computer. I didn’t feel any inspiration from a computer screen. When I write, I like to be involved in the process. As much as I hate to admit it however, a computer is just so much easier. I hoped that a typewriter would be quicker than writing by hand, yet not as impersonal as writing on a computer. The problem I found with my typewriter is that it’s quite painful to use! (I have weak fingers) I also found it really irritating how I couldn’t just press backspace and remove my mistakes. I am therefore ashamed to say that the computer wins this battle and my typewriter has settled to look good on my table. What a sad state of affairs.

Olivia x