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YOU SHALL NOT PASS!!!!

It’s funny how one thing leads to another…

Sophie E Tallis - Author/Illustrator

When it comes to writing or any creative endeavour that you are serious about i.e. not a hobbyist, but that you actually want to make a paying career from (again not fame & fortune, if you crave that you’re in the wrong game – go join a Big Brother house or Britain’s Got (f**k all) Talent), we are so often faced with failure.

So often I feel like the Balrog on the bridge in Khazad-dûm, trying to gain access to a path closed to me, a world full of closing (or slamming) doors.

Just need to add the appropriate sentence ending:

“YOU SHALL NOT PASS – this slush pile.”

“YOU SHALL NOT PASS – this competition’s shortlist (or even longlist).”

“YOU SHALL NOT PASS – this agent’s/publisher’s criteria.”

even “YOU SHALL NOT PASS – this selective writing group.” etc., etc.

Trying to make a living out of any creative field…

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Authors and Organisation…

I find organisation tricky. I have to have it or I don’t get anything done, but the moment something happens that interrupts my routine, my organisation goes out of the window and I get utterly lost with my work.

Since moving I’ve finished a couple of WIP’s (“The Hunted” and  “Snow & Kitsune”) but it has been a hard slog, mostly because I am also trying to cope with the chaos that living in Temporary Accommodation is causing.

So I sat down and forced myself, over a couple of days to write out a list of all the WIP’s, rewrites and published books/stories I have on the HDD. I use Excel to do this because it allows me to track the progress on each book.

I have a points / level system to make writing feel a bit more like playing a console game, but it also gives me a feeling of accomplishment when I total the points at the end of the month.

There’s also a spreadsheet that lets me track my daily writing amounts, what I’ve written that month (non fiction & fiction) and what new ideas I’ve started. It sounds complicated, but it’s actually fairly simple.

I came up with some pretty interesting numbers from the exercise (very interesting to me anyway) from the last few years of trying my hardest to be an Author.

As of 31st January 2017 –

  • 14 Unfinished WIPs
  • 3 In Editing
  • 6 In Rewriting
  • 5 Ideas/concepts
  • 6 First Drafts
  • 10 Published Books

I’ve written:

200,430 words on Non Series Books,
460,641 words on Arking Down books,
237,403 words on Quargard Books,
110,610 words on Various things like short stories,
8,841 words on Children’s Rhyming Stories.

Add that lot up together and you get 1,017,925 words… over ONE MILLION WORDS!!!

All of that has only been possible because I have organised myself to find the time to act on my inspirations. Not that my method would work for everyone – heck, it doesn’t always work for me!

At the moment, because I don’t have a study (I write from where I am sitting) I can’t get properly organised at all… maybe one day.

Ah well, back to the writing…

* * * * *

Publishing News

  • You may have heard from my facebook page that “The Tower and The Eye” is going offline. Well, this is because Blue Hour Publishing, the small press who took it on, have closed their doors.  I’ve decided to take a serious look at it and try and improve the books if I can, so there will be a new edition of each  them coming out gradually, hopefully from Jan 2018.

 

  • There are several books in the Beta Process at the moment. As I said earlier, “The Hunted” and “Snow & Kitsune” have been completed recently, although “The Hunted” won’t be coming out until I have re-launched “The Angel’s Crown” and published the rest of “The Secret of Arking Down” Series. This isn’t because I enjoy making you wait, merely because there are spoilers in “The Hunted” for how “The Secret of Arking Down” turns out.

 

  • “Snow & Kitsune” is the second of the “Kitsune Tales” that are the prequel to “Wind & Magic”. If you’ve read “Blossom & Kitsune” then you’ll already have had a sneak peek at “Wind & Magic” – there’s a chapter excerpt in the back of the book!  “Snow & Kitsune” should be out in E-Book in the next couple of months.