Prompt #1 – Earliest Memories


The first prompt for the Author Writing Challenge is:

Describe your earliest memory of writing? How did your writing habit/process/career develop?

Writing is something I’ve always done, I suppose. Recently I was looking through some boxes of old papers and found some stories I wrote when I was about 7 or 8 and in Grade 2 at school.

When I was in high school, my interest in writing flourished. I had wonderful English teachers who encouraged me to develop. I even won some writing awards, both for a short story and for a play. I still have a copy of my play, but not my story.

I went to uni to study journalism, but never finished – life got in the way, as it does…

Around 2008, I started blogging, and have been blogging ever since. It wasn’t until last year, I got back to writing fiction, and realised how much I loved it. I am now working hard to develop my writing, rediscovering my dream of becoming a published author.

Where to research?

Places to Research

As part of my planning for the Author Blog Challenge, I accidentally came up with a plan for a new information site… one of the features there is Friday Five. I thought I’d still do that here.

So, here is my first Friday Five post. I’m doing quite a bit of research for my Jimmy James stories. Sometimes it can be hard to know where to go. I’ve found a few fantastic resources recently, so I thought I’d share them with you. [Read more…]

Read what your kids are reading…

Read what your kids read

I saw a post in a writers group I’m part of saying that one way to connect with our kids is to read what they are reading.

As one of the books I’m writing is aimed at kids my kids ages, I thought this was a great idea, not only to connect more with my kids, but as a learning exercise.

Currently, they are reading, among other things, the Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Deltora Quest, Horrible Histories, and Specky Magee series of books.

I suggested the idea of reading their books to them and they just laughed! Mr N, aged 10, decided that those books aren’t the sort of books I would enjoy. He then admitted he had no idea the sorts of books I read, but it didn’t seem to make any difference.

They were also concerned that I would read the same books they were reading. Their fears were put to rest when I assured them we have enough books for me to read different ones to them.

Now, I need to decide where to start…

Oh, and they still think it’s hilarious that I’m even thinking of reading some of their books!

Happy Mother’s Day

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother’s Day to all the Mums out there. I hope you’re having a wonderful day.

So far, my kids woke me at 7am with a cup of tea and presents. Once I had opened them, they left me to go back to sleep – and the tea went cold!! It doesn’t seem to matter what the occasion is, if there are presents involved, the boys are excited.

Mr N won a $100 voucher to a day spa that he gave me as a gift as well as some goodies from the Mother’s Day stall at school. Mr Z gave me an “Awesome Mum” certificate from the Mother’s Day stall, and I bought myself a couple of DVDs.

Soon we will be heading out to church for a Mother’s Day breakfast followed by lunch.

I’m hoping that I will get some writing/editing time this afternoon when we get home – that would make it a wonderful day.

I hope you’re day is wonderful and, if you are a Mum, you are being spoiled, and if you aren’t, you are having fun spoiling  your Mum.

Planning and an idea…

I had an idea while planning...

You may have noticed my blog has been down – it’s now back up (yay!).

While I was waiting, I started doing some blogging here, and some planning for the Author Blog Challenge. I have now moved those posts to this blog.

The blog planning and brainstorming has now turned into an idea for an information website – contributed to by guest bloggers, rather than writing it all myself!

The name I gave the WordPress blog is “Author One Day” and the planning was along the lines of giving pre-published authors tips on how to move forward. You can read some of the ideas for posts here.

Some of the ideas include:

  • Weekly writing prompt/link up
  • Tuesday Tools where published and unpublished authors can share tools they use in their writing
  • Friday Five where published and unpublished authors and other publishing professionals (editors, etc) share five tips on something
  • Other articles with tips and inspiration to help unpublished authors get closer to their publishing goals

I also have ideas on how we can get sponsors to offer some great prizes and giveaways, as well as promoting writing courses, retreats, etc, as the site grows.

As I’m not yet published, I can’t write all the content, so I need help. If there isn’t the interest, I’ll shelve it.

Now it’s over to you. I would like some feedback on this idea to see if anyone would be interested in a) reading it and b) contributing to it. Please leave a comment to let me know what you think.

Claiming my space?

Claiming my space?

Today, I read an excellent post about claiming my space as a writer. I read the post, nodding all the time.

I dream of the day I can quit my day jobs and just write. I also justify the time I’m not writing – I have to work, look after the kids, I’m tired, the housework needs to be done… and many more.

After reading the post, I have been mulling over what it would look like to claim my space. I suppose the first step for me is signing up to study creative writing and really learn my craft. It is terrifying as it means I need to start taking my writing and my dream of being a published author seriously.

When I was 18, I tried to get a picture book published, and it didn’t happen. I know now why that was and the manuscript needs A LOT of work. The however many years it’s been since then has meant that I have grown up a lot and experienced life to draw on.

I’m also going to make it a priority to write every day. Even if it’s a snatched half hour during my lunch break, or ten minutes while waiting for the kids to come out of school. It will be a priority to get writing.

So, now I’m claiming my space too 🙂

Planning time…

Doing some planning

One advantage of my old blog being offline and blogging here is that it gives me a chance to do some planning to make this blog a bit more interesting and useful.

So, here are some things I’ve been thinking about:

  • Tools, probably on a Tuesday (Tuesday Tools?) – sharing some of the books and resources I use in my writing.
  • Guest posts from some of my writer buddies. Some are published and some aren’t. I’m thinking of asking them to share some of their tips for great writing, favourite books, or something else.
  • Writing snippets, just because you all really like them… and it’s a great way to show off! I also want to get back into Write on Wednesday and other writing exercises.
  • What I’m reading, books, websites, whatever. Some of what I read is light and fluffy, others more deep and meaningful, however I read what I can…

What do you think? You are reading it. Is there anything else you might be interested in?


My journey to be an author

My other writer site is down, and I’ve been getting impatient… I’ll move posts back when it’s back up.

If you read my other blog, you know that I have a dream to be a published author. It’s been there since I was in high school. Back then, being an author was not an acceptable career goal, so it was shelved until I “rediscovered” creative writing last year.

Recently, I applied to study Creative Writing at Tabor College in Adelaide. Well, today I received confirmation that I’ve been accepted!! It’s quite scary – in some ways it means it’s time to take my writing seriously instead of simply dabbling… it seems “real”.

Some other things have happened recently too. In March, I participated in the Chapter Book Challenge and wrote the first of my Jimmy James stories. My kids have been reading what I’ve written so far and the verdict is in – it needs to be longer. So I have more research to do about Magic Lanterns and their operators and what life was like. I love research.

I have also recently signed up to an Author Blog Challenge for next month. Another reason I want my site back up! Especially as I want to start scheduling some regular posts. With this challenge in mind, I would like to know what you would like to read about.

I’m looking forward to sharing my journey with you 🙂

100 Books…

Top 100 books...

My parents have just been on holiday to a house with a lot of books. They came up with the idea of compiling a list of 100 books they would like to give to their grandchildren on their 21st birthday.

They don’t know if they will get them or not. The latest thinking is getting a Kindle and digital books.

The fun part, though, is compiling the list of 100 books. So far, we’ve got to 37 books…

We need some help! We have done searches on the top 100 books of all time, and they are all a bit different  from each other, and some of the books on these list we don’t think are that great.

If you were to give your top 100 books to someone for their 21st birthday, what books would be on your list? Please tell me up to 5 books and why they would be on your list.

I look forward to hearing your suggestions.

A very special visitor over Easter

This blog post is a little bit overdue… I misplaced my flash card reader (again!!).

Over the Easter weekend, we had a very special visitor. Punxutawney Phyllis came all the way from the US, via New Zealand and Eastern Melbourne to spend the long weekend with us as part of her World Tour.

Phyllis receives a warm welcome from Jazz

[Read more…]

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