The story so far …

MONDAY 14th OCTOBER 2013

study2

Missuswolf’s StoryLand – the dream became a reality this year with my very own study! Major eeeeeekk!!

As most of you know since January 2012, I have been working on my first 80,000 word chick-lit novel. After writing the first draft during the dark, depressing months that were January and February, I have been working on the editing ever since.

Editing1

Firstly the manuscript (currently titled Little Miss Pooshoe) required editing from start to finish to tidy up any spelling mistakes, grammar errors and sentence structures. This is because a first draft is literally the words in your head being transferred straight to paper  as quickly as possible before they have a chance to disappear out of there.

A second round of editing is then needed whereby the actual text and flow of the story is looked at in more detail. This is still work in progress. The first ten chapter’s have endured this process where I scrutinise it prior to submission to an editor. These ten chapter’s have now reached the third round, where they are pulled apart chapter by chapter, sentence by sentence, word by word.

I have been lucky enough to meet a lovely lady called Kerry Ann Richardson at work, who is on her own mission to write Crime Thriller Novel’s (she is currently well into writing her second novel – well done hun!) Kerry put me in touch with a wonderful lady called Jenny Drewery, who edited her first manuscript.

I made contact with Jenny back in March and emailed her my full manuscript so she could get an idea of the full story. I then nervously submitted hard copies of the first ten chapter’s in April and, after a busy summer of moving for me and a hectic summer workload  for Jenny, the completed scripts landed on my doormat on 28th August.

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Scribbles and sentences – the first edited ten chapter’s of my manuscript

I wanted to give my refurbished manuscript the love and attention it deserves and I felt I could only do this once I had my study set up. This was so I could shut the door on the world and be alone with it; just me, my thoughts and my manuscript.

Therefore, last Monday (7th October) it finally felt right. My study is two thirds ready and at a stage where I can work in relaxation. I could make no more excuses and I anxiously bit the bullet – and opened the edited manuscript.

I prepared myself for the worst and although the pages are full of red pen, all the amendments that Jenny has suggested have really all made sense. She has looked at it from a reader’s perspective and taken out all unnecessary wording and highlighted areas that could be misinterpreted. Needless to say I have had some genuine laugh out loud moments at sentences which really don’t make sense when you apply a bit of reader’s logic.  One example involved a character and his goatee beard and how only he could pull it off. Jenny reminded me that if this was taken in the logistical context, it’s as if he is ‘pulling his beard off his face’. I whooped with hysterics for ages at that.

So the editing experience hasn’t been bad at all. I have met an amazing woman who has really helped pushed my manuscript to the next level.

Study

Last Monday and Tuesday, I sat and transferred all the edits from paper to computer for the first three chapter’s. My intention is to do the same with the other seven chapter’s so all ten are polished to perfection before starting this whole process of editing again with the next ten chapter’s of the manuscript.

Slowly, my dream is becoming a reality. I love nothing more than sitting at my desk listening to my writing playlist (oh yeah, I made a playlist – more on that another time!) and typing away at a manuscript.

Good things certainly do come to those who wait 🙂

Have a fab day everyone.

Love Missuswolf xxx

Creative Writing Cafe: Term Three – Lesson Six – What Happened Next

WEDNESDAY 07th NOV 2012

Missuswolf Creative Writing Cafe Book and pen

I returned to class this week following the half term break and my absence at the two classes prior to that. There was no homework set for this lesson so rather than classmates having their masterpieces to read out, we were put on the spot to come up with ideas for next weeks homework.

The task set was:

* Take an existing fictional character and write about what happened to them when the story finished. We must take a character that was alive – not killed off. We can use one from a book/film/soap/drama.

The tutor gave us fifteen minutes at the desk to pool our ideas onto paper.

Well, the experience I can describe is one of instant panic, the type you are exposed to in an exam-like scenario. Where your mind blanks as everyone around you is frantically writing away, flicking through papers as you are desperately still trying to remember what your own name is. The urge is so great to take a peak at what everyone else is up to but I managed to strongly resist.

As a result, this is the utter chaos that filtered from my brain through to my hand:

* The Little Mermaid (could she have really been a man and her new husband just finds out?)

* Katniss Everdeen – The Hunger Games (creating an opposite called The Feast Games as to who could eat the most. A bit sadistic)

* Harry Potter

* Frodo from Lord of The Rings

* James Bond (make him gay)

* Mr Darcy (he becomes a serial killer)

I read my options out and there was a short pause as the tumbleweed blew by. I think my ideas were a bit nuts(to be polite) and this class seems to stretch into rather random loops of my imagination.

We discussed a few options and Katniss’s character was thrown about a lot; how I could write a post rebellion happy ending for her that she had always wanted then another threat looms over her. I’m also strangely drawn to Killer Darcy.

Once a character is chosen, the next thing we have to consider is:

* Do they repeat their behaviour or fight it?

I open the floor up to my readers

as to which character excites you the most.

 

Again, I have to write a story of 750 words for next week.

TO READ/WATCH

Missuswolf Creative Writing Book reading

* Gone With The Wind

* Read The Hobbit and then Lord of The Rings

* The Killing (Danish programme with subtitles currently onto 3rd series)

* The Scandal (American Politics fast moving drama)

* The Bridge (Scandinavian Subtitles)

* The House of Elliott (TV Series possibly on yesterday channel)

INTERESTING TOPICS OF CONVERSATION:

This term we are having such a laugh, the tangents we go off on and the banter thrashed around is making this a really enjoyable class, especially when someone says ‘Erotic’ when they mean Erratic…

The tutor came up with an interesting perspective; that of from the murderers point of view when we watch films/drama’s. His examples were first that of the Psycho film where the body is bundled into the car and pushed into a lake where, for a split second, it stops and doesn’t roll any further. As a viewer, you willingly want the car to keep rolling and then realise you are somehow on the side of the killer. The same happened in a Cracker episode where Robert Carlise was a shaven headed killer who took newspaper clippings of his kills. The police attended his house on suspect enquiries and walked past these clippings on the wall, all the while the viewer subconsciously willing the police not to see it. Something for me to muse over and one day write into a story…

Love Missuswolf xxx

Images from Pixabay

Creative Writing Cafe: Term Three – Lesson Four – Aficionado

FRIDAY 19th OCTOBER 2012

Well what a whirlwind of a few days I’ve had! Not only did my Facebook Page hit 100 likes, I went to see Chery Cole in concert, did the day job plus overtime inbetween and (best of all) I became an Auntie for the first time to a beautiful baby boy!

So sadly my writing and blogging have been neglected and I am now giving it some well deserved TLC.

I was actually absent from Wednesday’s lesson due to said Cheryl Cole concert (she was amazing! fab dance moves, beautiful costumes and she was so sincere, overwhelmed by the support by shedding a tear or two, unable to thank her fans enough.) Something she said stuck in my mind during an emotional speech she made; she said never give up on your dreams as this was hers (to play at Newcaslel Metro Radio Arena) and there she was, living it.

Despite my absence, I was a good girl though and I still submitted by homework, which was based on a description in the first person of another character, revealing traits about that first person.

Here’s my attempt:

Aficionado

My scissors slipped as I frantically cut around the glossy photograph in the magazine, narrowly missing my thumb on the other hand.

It was worth it though. The picture staring back was exquisite; strawberry blonde hair bouffant, coiffed and glossy, sweeping wispily over willowy shoulders; shoulders that I longed to run my finger along. Aquatic blue eyes reflected an alluring smile that radiated from perfectly formed rose bud lips; blood-red against porcelain skin, inviting and longing to be brushed with my own.

Still the picture did not do her splendour justice. I had met her in person before, once, many months ago, at a book signing in town. I still remember the heart palpitations, the excited sweat trickling down my back as I stepped forward into the light, placed my book down and held my hand out for her to shake. She was even more slender in the flesh and her 5’9 frame had folded perfectly on the chair in front, her long bare legs stretched out in front narrowly peeking out the front of the desk, teasingly revealing those Black Louboutin’s.

She had cast her eyes over me and then nervously stared at my overly groomed hand, glimpsing the clipped cuticles, before abruptly ignoring it. She had hastily scribbled her name in the front with her own perfectly manicured hand, her svelte fingers gripping tensely to the pen as she fought the shakes, before I could say ‘It’s Michael.’ I wanted my name in there. I wanted this book to be personally made out to me. However, the beaming eyes in the magazine picture I now held were not replicated during that encounter. If anything, they had seemed bored, almost irritant and I’m sure I saw a glimpse of disgust in them. There was no small talk, no ‘It’s so nice to meet you Michael, thanks for buying my book and sending me those flowers and letters, I’m sorry I haven’t had a chance to reply, what with the busy schedule’. My response would have been hands flapping In front of me, waving off the apology and suggesting she make it up by accompanying me to dinner. This was not going as planned at all.

The sound of her clearing her throat had brought me to attention as she flung the book back, before turning to the young girl behind me. I was unable to move. Was this it? After all those letters I had written, all the times I had followed her everywhere, to make sure she was safe, to get another glimpse of that beautiful face, this was how she repaid me?

I had been ushered discreetly by a security guard to move along the line. As I’d walked off, I turned to look back; nothing. The dazzling smile had reappeared for the young girl, but only briefly. She had treated me like every other person in the world.

It was then I believed if I couldn’t have her, no-one could.

As I decided what frame would suit this wonderful portrait that now lay before me, I wiped the blood clean off the sharp knife and discarded it in the bottom drawer.  I hadn’t ruined that beautiful face; I had not touched that beautiful face. Wounds that never heal are better left unseen….

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I received some good feedback regarding this. The critique was a change in the title; it was originally ‘Strike A Pose’  however the teacher couldn’t help but picture Madonna throughout. I became stuck as to what I could possibly change this to before posting on here, so I decided to type the word ‘Obsessive’ into a Word Document and bring up the thesaurus.  Aficionado  immediately caught my eye; snappy, simple, effective and relevant. 

I was also emailed next weeks homework (eeek-geek!)  Man and Machine (or gender-neutral character and machine) – how we cope with gadgets, cars, computers, robots etc. It can be done in any genre, and either as a poem, script or prose.

Hmmmm what to write …

Love Missuswolf xxx