Spring is coming!!

I can tell because I really want to clean my windows. It’s my internal signal that the season ย is changing. That and wanting to throw stuff away.

I can’t put into words just how much I am looking forward to Spring. It’s a time of growth and change and that is perfect for me. You see, I feel like I’ve been experiencing limbo lately, and it’s been very hard to make any progress. I’m waiting, waiting, waiting. Treading water.

Or at least I have been. This weekend has marked some change for me, and I’m hoping that will help spur me on.

Yesterday I had my final meeting with SpecFicNZ as the secretary. Once I get the minutes written up, I’ll be done with my duties and revert back to a regular member (aside from helping the new Secretary find her feet).

I’ve been part of the committee since the very beginning, and I still remember when Ripley posted a thread on the Kiwiwriters forums asking if anyone would be interested. I immediately sent her a message and that was it for me. I’ve been dedicated to the organization ever since and have been so thrilled with how it’s grown and developed. I’m really proud of what we’ve done in these last few years and I know that the new committee has lots of fresh blood that will make it another great year.

Earlier this year I also stepped down from 5 years on the staff at Kiwiwriters, so in a lot of ways this year has been about change. I bowed out of training for Lifeline even though I have been wanting to do that for years now. I finished up at my copy editing job. I’ve been slowly stepping away from my other commitments to make room for… well, I thought it was for writing, and for study, but maybe somewhere in the back of my subconscious I was actually freeing myself up for home schooling. Or at least finding a way to help Ivy.

In any event. We are still waiting on that exemption certificate, and we’ll just have to keep waiting until it comes. I can’t let everything else stagnate while that happens though. Now that I have finished up a couple of other commitments it’s time to get back into Burn.

I read the novella a week ago and have made copious notes about the changes that need to be made. In general I’m left feeling pretty good about the whole thing though. It’s a decent novella and I am going to do my best to make it shine ๐Ÿ™‚ Revision begins TODAY. And that’s probably me for the next month.

What are you up to at the moment?


NZ Spec Fic Blogging Week 2011 – coming soon!

It’s almost that time of the year again! I love this blogging week, and I’m looking forward to bringing you a variety of posts for this years event. To learn more about it, why not head over to the SpecFicNZ website? This is the third year, and I’m sure it will be even bigger than last year.

Kiwiwriters.org is running a challenge alongside, in case you needed some extra incentive for posting during the week.

It’s a great opportunity to show some love for our beautiful country, and the talented and creative individuals who live here. I can say that participating for the last two years has really given me a greater appreciation for New Zealand Speculative Fiction, and spurred me into writing more fiction based here – attmpting to claim my local voice, if you will.

I hope you’ll tune in between the 19th and 25th of September. ๐Ÿ™‚


The End is Nigh!!

It’s that time of the year again – August is fast approaching and with it Kiwi Writer’s The End is Nigh Challenge.

If you haven’t heard of it before, head over and check it out – a whole month dedicated to finishing things off. I think it’s my favourite challenge of the year because, honestly, who doesn’t have things that need to be completed?? And if you need more incentive to sign up, or get things completed, I suggest heading over to Merrilee’s blog and check out her post on finishing what you start.

I’ve got heaps to choose from, but think I have narrowed it down a little: first I want to finish the chapter I’m working on for the new novel (hoping to get that done before August though), then I’d love to get the first draft of my assassin story finished, as well as getting The Comfort of Wood complete to submission standard. I’ll consider getting any of these done a ‘win’, but it would be nice to tick them all off the list ๐Ÿ™‚


Goals wrap up for 2009

This year I’ve done two general ‘goals’ posts, one at the start of the year and one halfway through.

The first general list looked a lot like this, though I’ve added in red purple (I don’t even like red really!) how I went:

Get published in some way shape or form! – didn’t manage this

Move house (a given), and buy it (still have to talk to the bank). – moved and purchased, renovations begun!

Finish edits on Lifelines and start submitting it. – I actually did this!

Edit Following Faith and look for a potential home for it. – planned to start, never did.

Write two new novels. – I completed the first draft of The Consign Mate, and started writing Chasing Ascension.

Rewrite/edit/polish one of my existing novels. – other than Lifelines, my previous novels remained untouched, though I did read Book 1 & 2 of the Resurgence Trilogy and began planning the third novel.

Get back into playing the Sax. – epic fail!

Read a lot more and keep up to date onย Goodreads. – I read a lot more. I did not keep up to date on Goodreads.

Get fitter, be more active. I want to be a good role model for my girls and I donโ€™t feel like Iโ€™m doing that at the moment. – I am more active now, though not as much as I had wanted to be by now.

Successfully pull off theย Kiwiwriters venture being announced tomorrow. – this went off really well, worth the time and effort.

The second one was a lot more vague as I had been posting monthly goals and not doing so well on them. I’d loaded the first half of my year up in a big way and was learning from my mistakes.

I did pretty well with this: Lifelines is being submitted to places still, I didn’t quite get 6 short stories ready for submission but I wrote 6 drafts and am working on rewrites of some of them. The gardens are still not complete but I did manage to get a good crop of a couple vegetables out of it so far.

2010 is just around the corner, and as it comes I know I have about 6 months of being able to get stuff done, followed by trying to adjust to the new life in our home and adapting to being a family of 5 rather than 4. It’s going to be interesting, but I know it’s going to be a lot of fun. Good things await, I just need to let myself be open to them.

I’m going to try and come up with some goals for 2010 and post them in the next day or so.


Taking a break – yesterdays post, so kinda old news

I’m worn out. I’ve burnt all my reserves and I have nothing left. I’m getting by day to day and am thankful that Hubby is off work until next week to help out with the girls.

Christmas is tiring, streams of visitors are exhausting and I just have nothing spare to give – at this point it’s even a struggle to remain patient and loving in the middle of the night with a sick child.

So I’ve not written in… a week I think? I have no intention of writing anything for the rest of the year (thankfully it’s only a few days). I’ve got nothing to draw on right now so it’s an impossibility for me. I need to build some energy back up, I need to rest enough so that I can feel things properly again and then maybe some words will come to me.

I’m hoping that a new idea will grab me soon, seeing as Tama has conned me into signing up for the New Year Novella. I need a quick hit, a rush of writing adrenaline, a shot of literary crack to get me started, which means tackling something fresh and something to do with coffee (it’s becoming a tradition that my New Year Novella’s all intersect at the same coffee shop, it’s a fun thing to do!).

At this point in yesterdays post I was about to say I was going to go and have a sleep or read my book but my Mum called and we had a massive chat and I began to feel a whole lot better about a number of things. Mum’s are awesome for many reasons, one of the really big ones is for being able to see solutions to problems that you can’t seem to find your way out of. Manageable solutions that you know you can achieve even if it’s not going to be easy to change the necessary habits. So thanks Mum! You rock and I love you to bits, I don’t know where I would be without you.



Firstly a quick note for any Kiwiwriters.org members who might be reading my blog: you might have noticed the website has been down for awhile now, we’ve been trying to get to the bottom of the matter and have recently been updated from tech support at our hosting that the backup data is corrupt. I’m not very techie, so I don’t know the details, but basically the last saved version of the site is from September. We’ll be restoring that shortly and will run the New Year Novella challenge while we sort out a better alternative.

This is the first time we’ve had such an issue, and hopefully the last time! Unfortunately that means ifย you became a member since September your details will have been lost and you’ll need to sign up for another account. I’ll make sure I update when I know something new (and when the site is back up), and we’ll be sending out a bulk email to all members in the near future to let everyone know what the plan of action is – don’t worry though, we’ll be back in business in the very near future ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s a real shame to have lost a few months worth of discussion and members, but unfortunately there is nothing we can do about it.

In other news: we have a (mostly) child safe deck! Woo! And we’ve been using it heaps since it got ‘finished’ over the weekend. Loving it, perfect timing for summer, can’t wait to start having bbq’s on it.

Lauren is now a walker. Over the last week she’s started moving around by herself after getting sick of her mother and father who wouldn’t agree to hold her hand and be dragged all over the house. She’s walking on her own about 75% of the time as of today and doing a damn fine job of it! Go my little girl! It won’t be long before she’ll be running around and chasing Ivy around the place.

I didn’t get any writing done over the weekend, which in all honesty is no surprise at all. Most of Saturday was taken up with deck building/child wrangling and then a birthday party in the afternoon. Sunday was devoured by absolute exhaustion after both girls decided 4am was a great time to start the day. We had a Christmas morning tea with my girl friends which lasted til almost 1pm, then I got to nap for an hour (mmmm nap) then dinner at Mum’s. Busy busy! Thankfully I got a little more sleep last night and am feeling less fragile and on the brink today.

And now I should go get some writing done, while the child sleeps…. lol fingers crossed she’s back to 2hr naps cause I so need them!

Hope everyone is well, not long til Christmas now though I can barely believe it’s only a few days away.


Tidying up

I cleaned my desk yesterday, and put all the books back on the shelves. I got rid of all the clutter and junk that had accumulated and it feels really nice to sit here now. I have some space to think, space to breath, which is exactly what I was hoping for with November not far away now!

The rest of the house is looking pretty good too by the way, I’ve been blitzing all the little tasks that I’ve been ignoring and I can really see that the place is coming together. It’s amazing what a few good cleaning sessions can do to change the way you feel.

Anyway… in the depths of the junk on my desk, I found notes for a story that I have yet to rewrite! I sat down for a few minutes and looked through them while thoughts began to spark and it made me really want to get stuck into the rewrite – I put it through Critters this time last year and got a lot of really great feedback. I may have a chance this month because I actually managed to get back on track with the critique I am working on (three chapters yesterday!).

Following Faith has been put aside for now, though I’ve got lots of plans for when I get the time to rework it. As it stands I imagine I’ll be writing the first draft of Riana for the rest of this year, hopefully finishing up late December, I might do another novella in January (a Kiwiwriters challenge that I like to do every year), at which point I can rework Following Faith… seriously, I have enough work lined up for years to come and thats not counting in any new novels!

Anyways, better get on with the day, there are always things to do.


Last day of June

Well, it’s been a big month, but we got there in the end! I just have to finish writing the June wrap up for KW, and I’m pretty much done!

I’m looking forward to it being July in the morning, though I have already started on the whole ‘taking it easy’ thing. I’m feeling a lot better already and am really excited to have more time to do my own writing stuff and make some progess.

Initial feedback about my latest short story ‘Birth Rights’ has been positive, much more so than I imagined! So I’m really happy about that. I do have some changes to make but it feels like I’m getting better at the whole short story thing and I’m looking forward to trying my hand at some more.

Oh and tomorrow is the first round of the Chapter One Rewrite Club! I am looking forward to reading through the first chapter of Lord of the Rings and then getting stuck into a rewrite to my own style and tastes. When it’s done, I’ll be posting up my efforts, along with Tama, and Merrilee, who are both playing too. Feel free to join in if you want, the official challenge is up on Kiwiwriters, but you certainly don’t have to be a member to join in ๐Ÿ™‚


I can taste freedom!

I know it’s probably a strange thing to say, but I can see the end of June approaching rapidly and all I can think is YAY!!!!

As much as I love being a part of Kiwiwriters, being staff, being helpful and getting stuff done, I have totally overdone myself on the site in the last month or so lol. It’s not been nearly as busy as last year in some respects, but I certainly took on more than my share of work (totally on my own steam, no one pressured me, but as most of you probably know I’m prone to saying ‘yes’ too often).

So July is going to see me trying to take a step back, have a little KW holiday and not do much, that said, I did suggest we run a survey to find out the wants/needs of our members and how we’re doing on those fronts… damn me and thinking about stuff!

Anyways. I feel good. The winner’s certificate is done, the Collection is all but done – I just have to wait til all the author bios come back so that I can update the file and then we’re good to go. How lovely to be so close to getting everything done! Actually, now might be the perfect time to look back on this months tasks, and see how I’m doing.

Write the May news for Kiwiwriters – done
Post/email weekly pep talks – done
Audit comments on the klog (kiwiwriters blog) – done
Design winnerโ€™s certificate – done
Design cover for the Collection, format the ebook and print versions of the Collection – done
Write a couple of klog posts – done
Put up all the guest klogs – done
Moderate forums – done
Post zing thing challenge – done and I posted The End is Nigh as well
Get 1k a day written on TCM – yes, until I finished the challenge. I’ll be back into it tonight, and have started a short story as well. I’ll still end up with around 30K for the month
Oh motivate people – eh, not sure how well I did this! lol

So, amazingly, I’ve managed to do everything I was meant to, and a little bit extra as well. I’m really looking forward to July, and trying hard not to stack up a bunch of new things to do. I’m going to do Tama’s first chapter challenge, and finish writing TCM and this new untitled short story. Once those things are done I can get into Lifelines and take it easy for a bit. The garden is in need of some love and it’s the perfect time to be getting it ready for planting.


Half way

Well, today marks the halfway point in the month, and I’m nicely over the halfway mark in this months goal as well – sitting at 14K (because I haven’t done my writing yet), and happy with how the story is coming out!

Every now and then I feel a little bit annoyed that I’m not making better progress, and then I remind myself that life is pretty busy and I’m doing well to be writing ~1,ooo words a day. That’s 30K for the month, which is a good count, and my novel will be sitting around 70,000 words if I carry on this way. I probably won’t be quite finished the first draft, but it shouldn’t be too far off.

Hopefully I can finish it during July, because really, I am itching to be at the editing/rewriting of Lifelines. I can only hope that I still feel like that when I get around to it. I’m mulling over the short story ideas that I’ve been having as well because I want to try and get a few of those written, and polish up some of the ones I have sitting around already.

Oh, I have for the most part got the Collection formatting sorted! Woo. I just need to tweak a couple of things, and then I’ll send it to Kerryn for checking over. After that, I need to get the front and back covers sorted, put it through Lulu, and then get the e-book version sorted. It’s exciting to think that it’s almost done, and in not too long we’ll be done with June – I am really looking forward to it being over.

I feel pretty stretched right now (am sure it’s showing up in my writing, but Chibi hasn’t been reading it so she hasn’t been telling me that I’m tired and writing lazy), and am really looking forward to taking a break from stuff once June is over. KW won’t need me so much then and I can finally do a massive clean out over at the SpecFicNZ group forums and put some energy back into keeping that project moving forward.

At least I feel like it’s not just me though, I think there is something about this time of the year (winter for us) that means we spiral down and conserve some energy, I certainly feel like I want to just hang closer to home and focus on home stuff/my stuff rather than bouncing my energy around the rest of the world right now.

Ah well, better end this. Am sitting on the end of the bed while Lauren sleeps cause I don’t want her to wake up and crawl off it, she’s been falling over an awful lot lately as she tests her balance and lets go of the couch/bookshelf/table/whatever else she’s managed to pull herself up on. I’m doing my best to catch her when she does, but if I’ve left the room to get a drink or whatever, she can easily pull herself up AND fall over in the time it takes me… hopefully it won’t be too long before she’s got a better sense of balance!

Happy writing ๐Ÿ™‚