Category Archives: Writing

Followers, favourites & frantic defilement – weary writers on Twitter

I’ve been trying to build up my Twitter followers this week, in the hope that if I ever finish this book and get it out there, I’ll have a conveniently amassed audience to whom I can promote it.

That’s the idea, anyway.

I also just enjoy using Twitter. Interacting with fellow writers, sub-editors, journalists and professional piss-takers is a lot of fun. It’s all witty quips in brash brevity – a skill in itself.

Even on a purely psychological level, the favourites/retweets aspect is like gaining experience points in a weird social RPG. Each arbitrary milestone you reach for the number of followers you accrue feels like leveling up.

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Having a domestic with the first draft – editing is a bitch

Editing that first draft is an act of mutilation – it’s messy, emotional and unforgiving.

But that’s because I write like a maniac – without forethought or planning. I just do a mind-puke over the page like I’ve been on some boozy ideas binge.

Now I have to sift through this literary vomit and pick out the chunks that might still contain some nutritional value. It’s horrid.

Continue reading Having a domestic with the first draft – editing is a bitch

A world-building Rift

I experienced an Oculus Rift the other day. It was sensational – in a sense.

I’d never worn a virtual reality headset. I lowered myself into a bolted-together driving seat, complete with plastic steering wheel with gear paddles, a wobbly shift stick and a full complement of pedals at my feet. The room I was in was a small, dimly lit box-room office, and my friends stood behind me as I lowered the headset over my eyes.

Suddenly, I was sat in a Ferrari in the pit lane at Silverstone. Hands that were slightly too small to be mine gripped a pixelated steering wheel in front of me with a functioning dashboard behind it. I looked to my right and saw my rear view mirror, my friends ominously absent in its reflection, despite the sound of their merriment at my apparent open-mouthed glee.

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Focus – the nemesis of the Chaos Draft

It took me the best part of a decade to write the first draft of my book. That’s a long, freaking time.

In 10 years, a lot has changed, not least me. I’m a very different person to the borderline-alcoholic, early-20s buffoon that started scribbling down a scene on the tube. Now I’m a moderately sensible 30-something borderline-alcoholic, with a new-found love of reading.

As I’ve changed, my characters have changed, my plot has been twisted and my world has been turned upside down. There’s a beginning, a middle and an end – but their relation to each other is warped, as though light refracts through each Act.

Continue reading Focus – the nemesis of the Chaos Draft