Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Post-Bank Holiday catch-up - Painted hallways, country music and changing moods...

So, the Easter weekend is over, and I hope everyone had a good one. How did I spend the long Bank Holiday? Well, we've been decorating our hallway, and finally got that finished, so that's what we've been doing. And thanks to the weather not exactly being kind to us here in the north east, I didn't really mind being stuck indoors with the smell of paint pervading the air while I tried to keep the dog off the wet skirting boards. It was nice to get some work done on the house.

Our newly-decorated hallway.
I also picked up my new glasses over the weekend and, thanks to age creeping up on me, I now have to have two pairs - one for distance, one for reading. And this is proving a tad frustrating at the minute as I keep forgetting to change them over and end up squinting when I don't need to; I just need to get used to swapping them over when need be. It's not exactly rocket science, but I'm beginning to realise why my hubby opted for varifocals. You live and learn...

But it wasn't all paintbrushes and dust sheets these past few days. I also took a bit of time to sit down and catch up on what I think is one of the best shows on TV right now - Nashville. I've always had a bit of a soft spot for country music, and this show is hitting all the right spots for me - great stories, great characters, and some great music! Loving it! So a very pleasant afternoon was spent yesterday watching a few episodes back-to-back. 

But, despite the decorating and the urge to dig out my cowboy boots again, my writer's brain hasn't exactly been dormant these past few days. In fact, it's been quite the opposite!

Now, I don't know about any other writers out there, but just because you happen to be in the middle of writing one book, it doesn't mean to say that ideas for other books stop coming. And for me, these past few days have seen a flood of ideas rushing forward. So much so that, today, I've had to sit and write down notes, scribble down new character ideas, and make sure none of what's come to me gets forgotten. But it also makes things quite confusing, for me, anyway. Because I'm a firm believer that you can only write if you're feeling the mood, if the inspiration is there - and what if that inspiration isn't for the book you're currently in the middle of writing? Do I push it aside, do a little bit of work on something else, while the mood is there? While these new characters who are trying to rudely push themselves forward are invading my head? Well, I'd be stupid to ignore them, really, wouldn't I? 

There are no hard and fast rules to writing, despite some saying otherwise. I mean, how can there be? Every writer is different, every author has their own methods of working, and mine certainly aren't what you'd call traditional. I don't follow rules, I can't. I listen to my mood, listen to the characters that are trying to shout the loudest, and give them the attention they need. It's the only way I can do things. Trying to write one story while another one is there in the forefront of your mind is nigh on impossible. 

So, at the minute, I'm sitting surrounded by notes, working on the seeds of new ideas, and structuring a couple of surprise books that people may not be expecting. But, fear not, if you're waiting for the next installment of the Striker Trilogy, that is still very much on the front-burner. I've just pushed it aside slightly today in order to get these new ideas down, to get them into some kind of story structure, get some basic character ideas written down and defined. 

I do think that it is possible to work on more than one project at a time. I have days where my mind wants to be with one set of characters, and others when it feels like spending some time with another bunch - it all depends on my mood, what inspiration I've been bombarded with, and who I feel like writing about. That's the way I work, and some may call that unconventional, some may say it's a terrible habit and can't possibly work. I disagree.

Right now I have a whole different bunch of make-believe worlds I can escape into, and I like that feeling. And it doesn't matter which one I happen to be in at the time, for the duration of my visit that story and those characters get my undivided attention, whether it's for one day or a lot longer. 

So, before I ramble on too much, which world will I be spending time in today? Ah, well, that would be telling, wouldn't it? Suffice to say, there's no let up yet in story ideas as far as I'm concerned. They just keep on coming, and I'm getting inspiration from places you just wouldn't believe. And for that I'm eternally grateful...


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