After the writing has finished…it’s Beta time

The End had been written, the story had been completed, in my head, there was a party going on. And then what?

Relieve, it’s finished?

Fear, that it’s finished?

Lost, knowing it is finished?

Or all of the above?

After reading through the draft, setting scenes that made complete sense while writing, but when read back made no sense at all, the time came to hand over my book baby to others.

Others = amazing Beta Readers who kindly take the raw, unedited draft and read through the grammar mistakes to give the story new eyes. A readers eyes.

It is hard to put into words how grateful and honoured I am for these first read-throughs, how nervous they make me, and how much trust and confidence handed over to these wonderful, amazing friends.

Thank you Beta Readers, thank you for your time, chance, honest review, direction, comments, messages, and your book world love.

Asking…part 2

Have you ever seen the posts on social media for funding a film? Fundit, Kickstarter, GoFundMe are just a few that are available. I would share the posts and when I could, I would donate to help make the projects work. For a filmmaker, this funding is widely and often used.

So when an author sets up a fund page, why then is there a stigma that follows?

A friend set up a fund page to help release her first book. I scoffed at the idea. Why should she ask for money to support her dreams while, like many other writers, I was funding my own?

I had skimped and saved to be able to purchase covers, edit the books, format them and then print them. Not yet have my books paid me back for my hard work but that I put down to not being out there, so to speak.

Until now.

My last post I spoke about asking for help. I didn’t realise then that I would be the one asking for help in a funding kinda way. I honestly didn’t think that would be the road I would travel.

It is no secret that I started an honours degree in the creative arts. It is also no secret that my first year, as a full-time student, was tough. Life caught me by the ankles and started to pull me into the depth of the sea, slowly drowning.

So yes I have asked for the unthinkable help. Help to push the next book towards the finishing line.

I would do it for others, if I had the means, and I have done it for others in the past. I will, eventually, pass it forward again.

Creativity comes in all forms; film, photography, writing, theatre, music and should be encouraged. Even if that encouragement is a share or hashtag on social media or actually helping out.

Yes I do have a gofundme page, no I won’t be sharing the link, if you would like it then please message me.

Funding is me asking for help, funding is me giving something back to you, funding is and should be a one-off thing. 

It will not be done again and you know why?

Because of 2 reasons: 1) asking is hard, 2) negativity.

I wish everyone who has a crowdfund running at the moment, the best of luck.

It is not easy to ask. 

Asking…

Easter break has been a busy one. With less than a month before I finish college, for the year (unbelievable), I have been back and forth, on the long journey, to complete or at least near complete projects. Between that and recharging the ole body, my mind has been thinking. Which is dangerous.

Now I know and admit I’m not a bestseller, my books aren’t in the top 100 on Amazon and I don’t make money from my writing. That is life. So what have I been thinking about, what did the whole day start and end with? Changing my covers, changing my name and trying to give my words a boost that they deserve.

Let me start with changing my name.

I had this thought that maybe if I signed off my book Hidden with my real name, the book would be more accessible. Crazy but let me explain. Support, where I live, seems to only happen if the name on the book relates to a local person. Hidden is in a local shop, which is fantastic, but they have left it on the shelf and not on the table with the other local writers. So my great plan would be to replace Amelia with my name. It was then suggested to me that maybe the cover should be changed too. A complete overall. By the afternoon my head was full of plans, what kind of cover should I have, what would I do with my Facebook account and Twitter, how was I going to afford this amount of change?

See…never give me time to think!

This is where friends stepped in. One by one they gave me a verbal slap that I am very thankful for and made me see the reality.

Hidden has a beautiful cover, it was chosen because it represented Samuel, the turmoil he was experiencing and the past he couldn’t shake off. The pain in his eyes spoke the words I had written. I love that cover the moment I saw it and will always love it. There will be no change.

Next my name, well I am Amelia. The public side of me mixed with a small amount of private life. When I talk about college, well that’s very much the other side of me but I talk about it because it is my passion. My creativity expands everyday and I use my skills, as a writer, to grow there. I edit film that I have shot, storyboarded, and directed. I work with audio voice -overs, syncing with film and editing on ProTools application. I tell stories with pictures through photography, or at least I am trying too. I create websites, I am a creative person and although I am not writing novels at college, I am storytelling.  If I take Amelia away, then I will have no voice to talk to you with. So Amelia is staying.

I am privileged, extremely grateful and cannot thank the people who stepped in yesterday to make me see sense. A dear friend recommended the book The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer and it has been inspiring.  On my Facebook page yesterday I stated that I will start asking more, something I didn’t really do. And I will. I will ask when I am in a place of doubt, for time to chat. I will ask when I am unsure of the next step to take. I will ask for a friendly coffee and to clear the dust from my brain. Oh and I will ask, when the time comes, for help when I am ready to release book 2 of Hidden.

Thank you for reading

 

*any grammar/spelling mistakes are my own

Not Forgotten…

It has been a while…no it has been forever since I last posted here and I shake my head in my lack of commitment. When I started this new website, I hoped there would be more than 3 posts by the middle of March, but I had totally forgot to take into account college.

Yeah I know, I am not the first person to go back to education, nor will I be the last. The thing is I am studying creative media, and therefore, all day my brain is in creating mode, film, TV, storyboards, websites, the full shebang. By the time my car pulls up in the driveway and I have consumed food, nothing in my brain works. BUT today I received an email I have been waiting for a while and thought I would tell anyone, who reads this, first.

I have been invited to attend an Author Event in Dublin!!!!

Before we all jump around the room together, pulling our tops over our head in glee, the year of event is 2019. That is 2.0.1.9. Plenty of time for Hidden book 2 to be released and maybe, just maybe, another book.

Anyway, that is my exciting news in the book world…

Until next time….

 

The Fear of Writing

Think of the last time you sat down and had to write a letter (oops showing my age!), or an email. Whether to the bank, school or whoever, did you find the words to express what you wanted to say? Or did you stare at the page or screen and give up a few times. It’s not always easy, is it?

Now think of this. You have an idea for a fictional story. This idea had been playing in your minds-eye for days, weeks and sometimes years. This idea has a life. The characters talk to you during the day, wake you up when you are sleeping, beg you to make their lives exciting. You are eager to go back to their world often to develop the concept and yet, when the few moments you get to be able to imprint this idea occurs, no words form.

Welcome to creative writing.

There are several reasons why the words are hard to translate onto a word document, and the curser flashing where I last left the characters doing their thing, doesn’t help. I’m going to share with you my top four reasons why I have an occasional fear of writing.

  • Rejection ~ even from myself
  • Self-doubts ~ am I good enough to think I can do this?
  • Finding the right words to express
  • Doing it wrong ~ crazy I know! Is there a right way?

And yet when I can overcome those initial fears, I write, pushing through the mental barriers and just form words that make a story, a creative story. A story that brings life into the characters tormenting me during the day and I let them vomit onto the screen. Okay vomit is a messy word but that’s what it is like. Vomit the words, clean up later.

So if you are reading this and have a story digging at you, write it down, take that leap, vomit the words on the page/screen, clean the words up later. More importantly, do your thing and hopefully overcome the fear of writing because after all, they are only words!

 

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What is in a name…?

Now I would love to start this post by saying my mother named me Amelia but she didn’t. I don’t even know if the name suits the person I am!

You see, my born name is a very plain name. Nothing alluring, it doesn’t roll off your tongue when it is called, it’s just me. So when I started publishing stories on my old blog, I wanted to keep who I really was under wraps.

Why, you may ask? Well, I kept my writing private from my normal everyday life and my job. I didn’t want any negative responses to my stories, if I got any, for my family to read (I am still terrible at receiving negative remarks!) Basically I was scared. In my head I had a plan that if it went wrong, if I was going to be chased away from the writing game with flaming torches, I would wipe out Amelia. The name was my protection.

In the nearly 3 years that I have adopted Amelia, I have been very lucky and very thankful with the responses, and have only wanted to wipe her out twice. YES TWICE. The first time was when my naivety, at the beginning of social media, became abused and the second when my kindness was stretched to the limit (and this is still boarderlining). I’d rather I didn’t have to go through both of those times but social media can be a blackhole and I just happen to fall into the pit. Thankfully I learnt and grew from the experience, I’m cautious and my words are thought through, mostly! Maybe that is the reason for the new Avi, the lack of nylon posts and the new blog…maybe!

Now I view Amelia as my protection. Sometimes Amelia and me overlap, they are bound too, I am Amelia after all. Away from social media and writing though, I am just me. People who know I write will call me by my name, those who don’t, call me Amelia. I answer to both. My personality is both. I type as both, but I do not stop living my life to be Amelia.

Calling or using my real name on an Amelia social site, well that is just wrong. Calling me Amelia when I am at Uni, that’s wrong too, especially during class!!

So what is this blog trying to say…it is okay to have a pen name. Many writers, actors, musicians do. I’m not deceiving anyone by being Amelia, because it is me. I’m not pretending to be someone else, I don’t use fake pictures, I don’t post things that are fake, I am me.

I wear a veil of a different name, an invisible clock so to speak. But I Am Still Me.

So

What is in a name…?

 

 

 

 

Busy, Busy, Me…

So sorry it has been forever since I was here but several things have been keeping me busy.

First I want to say a BIG thank you for reading my short stories, supporting me on Social Media and purchasing my books. As you may already know, I released Hidden in September on ebook and
paperback. The reviews have been fantastic and I have already started to write the sequel!
I have also started a Honours Degree, full-time and this has consumed most of my time. Any spare I have, I am working on my next book or researching, hence the quiet moments.

Unfortunately I won’t be writing any more short stories for the blogspot website but the amazing news is that this wordpress website will now be my new home.

Other news is that I attended my first author signing. The event was held in Dublin at the beginning of October. I had a great time and met fabulous people.

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