Well that’s what it says I did. This is the third consecutive year I’ve taken part in NaNoWriMo and it was so much harder this time but the writing experience was much better.

I’d already decided (my only plan) that I wasn’t going to attempt a novel-length thing and had intended to write 30 short fiction drafts, but it didn’t turn out like that. I glided in and out of a novel-like thing with ‘interludes’ and a few short fiction drafts in between. Until I re-read it I won’t really know what I’m dealing with but I have lots of words to play with and … may even write some more before the end of the month.

How did I cope with it? Mind over matter, chocolate and fresh coffee mostly. Was it worth it? Oh yes. Will I do it again? Very likely.


Black and white

Sorting through an art folder this morning I found some charcoal drawings I did about ten years ago. This is one of them. Something I like about working in black and white is that without colour to identify or define objects, the drawing, though figurative, has the sort of ambiguity about it that I rather like in an artwork. I like this quality in fiction too.

Brooks Glenbrook Saddle Holdall for sale


Brooks Saddlebag / Holdall in Black.
As new/excellent condition £45
RRP £92.89 (Brooks website).
Suitable for touring and vintage bikes.

Buyer to collect (Lancashire).

Specification here.
Contact: dot7seven at gmail dot com

Matt Bell How They Were Found: review

Matt Bell’s How They Were Found

“Inspired, poetic, experimental collection of short fiction. Bell takes a vision of the real world and turns it inside out. Magical. Riveting.”

Reviewed for The Short Review (November 2010)

Grinderman: Heathen Child

Well. This AMAZING video took my mind off the remaining 28,000 words I plan to write for National Novel Writing Month. Enjoy.

Interludes (and a little insomnia) …

Well that’s where I was. In bed looking at the cat who was watching me read Lydia Davis. The fireworks have stopped (for now) but my mind starts wandering (never a good thing late at night) so I think I might as well get up and write. Then I’m downstairs in the kitchen and the stove’s still warm and I make some coffee … I won’t ramble on, you (probably) know how it is.

It’s also day 6 / 7 of NaNo (looks at watch). No it’s definitely day 7 and I’ve written around 9,000 words so far. I was quite impressed with the first 6,000 and then got even more excited when I realised how themes and characters overlapped with what I wrote (and did nothing with) last year. So that’ll be something to think about in the edit. But today I stalled, so I gave myself what I call an *interlude* day when I let myself write about anything. I’m not a plot driven writer, ergo I don’t plan either.

However, these *interludes* often get me going again. Letting go of what I’m *supposed* to be writing about frees me up to produce (what I describe as) creative soup; a mix of found things and stuff I see or things that have happened during the day – or sometimes – a pure stream of consciousness response to just being. So that’s where I am today, having an interlude, a break from the story to bring something creative back into it all – and (literally) getting very cold feet in the kitchen at two o’clock in the morning.