I’m Ready!

It’s finally here, my final year of university.

And preparing myself for it, among other things, has shamelessly kept me away from my keyboard and updating Geeky Scribbles. For this I apologise, and promise to update you all much more often in the forseeable future.

Since the last post, I got myself a job. I’ve been working at Lush Bath Spa now for the past two months as a Christmas temp sales assistant, and I blooming adore it! My colleagues are lovely people, and the products are beautiful. My world has been filled with perfume and glitter, and I don’t know what I’ll do without it in my life.

So, with working, and moving out of my beloved studio flat to a disabled-access room in the halls of residence at the top of campus, I’ve been keeping myself rather busy.

Not to mention that last weekend, the freshers moved onto campus in their hundreds.

I’ve been living on campus pretty much alone (apart from the apathetic international postgraduates I shared my halls with) for the past four months, so having the place buzzing with activity feels alien to me. No longer can I go for late evening walks around the lake without passing some people clutching cans of beer like they are a lifeline, or curl up in front of Netflix without the background sound of flat parties rumbling through the blocks.

It’s nice to be able to talk to people again, and not feel as isolated as I have been, but at the same time, I appreciate peace and quiet.

So, today is the first day of Fresher’s Week, with the first years attending many introductory classes and hanging out in the bustling SU bar. I’m sat here typing on my laptop in a bid to get out of the flat and do something productive, but getting distracted by occasional snippits of conversation that I’m overhearing from the students around me.

And I’m ready to rock!

Time to Let My Hair Down! (well, Nearly…) And A Big Announcement…

It’s nearly that time of year when students put down their books, move out of their university digs and head off for the summer. 

Although for me, lectures are a thing of the past right now, I’ve still got three proper assignments and two reading quizzes to complete before I can put my feet up for a well earned break. 

Tomorrow is the Summer Ball, and I’ve bought a brand new dress, 1950’s swing style, with a separate petticoat, to wear. I’m going with B, so it is very much something to look forward to. I shall enjoy being able to let down my hair and dance my feet off, celebrating a year that saw so much happen to me, and made me a far stronger character as a result. 

A big announcement I have to make is this, however.

I’m starting training to become a burlesque performer. 

That’s right, one of those people who stripteases on stage with feathers, rhinestones and glitter to music. 

It’s thanks to my good friend Cici, who has agreed to teach me all she knows, after I saw her perform at Bath Spa Pride. I already knew her from The Idle Playthings, but had no idea of her sideline in pole and burlesque, until I saw her strut her stuff on stage. After much gushing, and not all that much begging, she has taken me under her wing. As we are both in he throes of studying, we won’t be starting properly until September for sorting out routines, but until then I’m immersing myself in YouTube tutorials, books, films and Pintrest boards to get myself in the zone for performing.

I shall start up my own blog about my journey into the world of burlesque under my stage name soon enough, and get Facebook and Twitter for it, but I’d need photos of myself in costume and makeup, so that won’t be for a considerable while yet. But the blog can kick off soon, probably once I’ve completed all my outstanding coursework for the year. Extra motivation, much? 

In the meantime, I’m getting my fitness up. Yes, the girl best know at school for hiding in the girl’s toilets in the Humanities block at school with a book and iPod to skip PE, is taking up fitness in a big way. I’ve downloaded an app called Zombies, Run! 5k and have been working out with it for the past week. I’ll review it soon, alongside its usual version, Zombies, Run! Even Matt has been getting into the spirit, and runs with me whenever I’m round his or he is round mine. If you’re wondering how Zombies, Run! works, it’s basically an interactive app that gets you to interact with a story as you run, set in the zombie apocalypse. You collect supplies and run away from zombies.

So, this weekend is going to be great! Summer Ball tomorrow, day in bed Saturday, and a trial burlesque and pole class on Sunday! So excited!! 

How To Write a Novel in 30 Days…. #3 – #12

Let’s just say I’ve not really had the best of times over the past several days when it has come to this project.

Lots of factors come into this, including being away from university longer than I was initially planning on (I’ve literally only just gotten back to Bath this afternoon), getting distracted with family activities and Sims 4. Add in an excellent dose of Writer’s Block and forgetting to take my medication, and you have the recipe of novel-writing disaster!

I spent a lot of the first week away spending time with my foster mum and the kids, who are all very happy and boisterous as normal. I also hung out a bit with my cousin’s friends in a brilliant Cards Against Humanity session and a few jager-bombs thrown in. I also went out with my grandparents for an afternoon, to the pub for lunch and a drive to the seafront for a quick ice cream cone. When we got back, I helped Nan sort out her iPad (she’ll be a silver surfer yet!) and petted their cat.

This week was more chilled, with me spending a lot of time milling around the house and napping, as well as playing on Sims 4. There were plenty of opportunities to write, but as I felt so behind, I barely had the motivation to write very much, so only added about 600 odd words to the last word count total. It’s not good enough, and there is two weeks to go before the end of the project, so I need to get a wiggle on!

But now I’m back in Bath, the distractions should be minimal, as most people are still away, making campus nice and quiet, so I can slip off to Commons or the library for a change of scene so I can sit and write as much as I can. I’m not sure that I’ll hit my target final word count, but I can sure as heck try to write as many words as humanly possible. I’ll probably get started tonight after my shower…

How to Write a Novel in 30 Days #2

Day #2…

Not at all as successful as yesterday. It’s mostly my fault, so I shall hang my head in shame, knowing that I have to write double what I need to do tomorrow in order to get myself back on track.

Last night was the night the brand new Sims 4 expansion came out on midnight release. I’d preordered the game, and was sat staring at my laptop in anticipation, ready to spend the night gaming in the virtual world where I am the creator of the universe.

However…

I played until nearly 4am.

It’s a very addictive thing, Sims 4. Especially when you can now go with them to their workplace and wreck havoc on their working lives as well as their social and personal lives…

After noticing that I’d spent all night waiting and gaming, I reluctantly shut everything down, and trotted up to bed. Four hours later, my aunt was giving me the wakeup call that I’ve asked her to give me each day I’m in Portsmouth to ensure I get some writing done, I could barely open my eyes, or grunt much of a response. She popped my cup of tea on the side, and went off to her driving test (she passed, by the way, so congratulations to you Auntie!) and then work.

And I didn’t actually get out of bed until 1pm. The time I’d agreed to pop over to my grandparent’s house for an afternoon trip to their favourite local pub…

It was safe to say that I was occupied all afternoon with catching up, eating icecream and teaching Nan how to download things onto her iPad, and how to use Facetime (she’ll be a silver surfer yet!).

After getting home and having some dinner, me and my aunt and uncle watched the Leader’s Debate on ITV, and ended up debating heavily on what we thought of the issues (mixed results about immigration, the NHS and young people in education, work and training). We ate cake, did a bit of Ancestry.com, then everyone went to bed.

Well, nearly everyone…

And that was when I realised, at 1am, that I haven’t written a single word. Not one. Great work Heidi, great work! I’m going to have to write an extra 1917 words on top of the usual 2000 target tomorrow, and I have only myself and my gaming/terrible sleeping habits to blame. Ah well, there is always the morning…

And the evening.

Auntie wants to go out for the day tomorrow, to watch a film and go for lunch. So it’s going to be a frantic day to juggle everything, but I’m sure I’ll manage!

I think…

IMG_2373

Starting Word-Count = 2083

Target Word-Count of the Day = 2000

Word-Count Total = 2083

Total Words Written Today = 0

Minimum Word-Count Target for Tomorrow = 3917

How To Write a Novel in 30 Days #1

Day #1 is here!

I’m in Portsmouth staying with my aunt and uncle for a week or so, so I’m using the change of scenery to help me focus in the initial stages of the project.

So, my aunt woke me up at half seven, and I rolled out of bed at eight, and started writing at nine. I had a mug of very sweet coffee, a couple of biscuits, some notes and my laptop, and got down to business.

IMG_2358

By ten, I had about half and a bit of the day’s target total, 1035.

IMG_2364

My initial aim was to have it all down by eleven, but it was about half past eleven when I hit gold…

With 83 extra words to the chapter! Huzzah!

I feel really good at this point. I’ve noticed how much easier it has been today after taking my ADHD medication first thing before sitting down to write. Starting a routine of writing a chapter a day will also probably help, as will writing a summery of each chapter down in my notes to remind me of where I’m at in the story so I don’t get side tracked. I can also write a quick line of how I want to work the next chapter, so I have an idea of where I’d like the story to go, but allowing the opportunity for my imagination to run wild and add other parts. It’s nice to be focused, and do things in manageable chunks. Says me on Day #1. By the end of the week I may feel differently, but who knows? At the moment I’m feeling pretty darn good about everything.

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I’m looking happy at the moment, though how long that’ll last, I haven’t a clue. Milly had better behave herself in the next few weeks, otherwise we might just fall out. Writing an ADHD character as someone with ADHD is proving to be an interesting experience. As I’m handing parts of the book in for university work, I won’t be sharing excerpts until I’ve had my marks back, just to be on the safe side of not self plagerising, yay?

The story was initially going to be a chic lit style novel, although already in the first chapter I feel the genre is going in a whole new direction, probably just a comedy, to be honest. Even though ADHD isn’t always fun to live with, you can get an awful lot of material from personal experience for both stand up and general comedic writing. I really need to hone my comedy writing skills, so I’m hoping this novel will be very good practice!

So, Day #1 is done, bring on Day #2!

Stats

Starting Word-Count = 0

Target Word-Count of the Day = 2000

Word-Count Total = 2083

Total Words Written Today = 2083

Minimum Word-Count Target for Tomorrow = 1917

How To Write a Novel in 30 Days – UPDATE!

So, just came out of my meeting with my IP tutor…

I’VE BEEN GREENLIGHTED!

YEEEAAAAHHHHH!!!!!

Though, on one condition…

He’s asked me to up the wordcount to 60,000 words…

Yes, you read that right, 60,000 words.

That’s 2000 words EVERY SINGLE DAY.

And that’s on top of the Journal, blogging and general life. No pressure then!

I’ve never upped my word-count before, considering that when I usually take on NaNoWriMo, or the Camp equivalent, I get to about the 15/20k mark before I end up throwing the towel in, and hiding in my room for the rest of the month, so that no one can spot me and ask how the novel is getting on.

But, this time, there is more at stake than just the half-written manuscript. My grade, my reputation at university is also on the line if I don’t succeed in this challenge.

My IP tutor said one main thing to me:

‘Just get those 2000 words a day written!’

And, you know what? I may be terrified, nervous, wanting to throw it all out and run in the opposite direction, but by Gods I won’t! I am more determined to prove that you can indeed write a novel in 30 days. Even if you have ADHD, a messy flat, piles of paperwork and a weird life in general.

I am a writer, and it’s about time I started actually being one.

Independent Project – How to Write a Novel in 30 Days

I may have briefly mentioned this in a previous post, but after dropping Performance Poetry, I was given the opportunity to transfer to the Independent Project module.

What this means is that I can choose to do any creative writing project I wish that doesn’t fit in with any of the usual modules taught at Bath Spa. I had a few ideas, but then I realised that both Camp NaNoWriMo and the deadline for the 4000 word Creative Portfolio for Writer’s Workshop 2 were creeping up on me…

Why not kill two birds with one stone?

So, ‘How to Write a Novel in 30 Days’ was born!¬†Alongside the usual Camp NaNo process, I will be keeping a written journal about the progress of my challenge, how I’m feeling about it and what I’m learning as a writer/novelist in the 30 days of the challenge.¬† I’ve typed up the proposal for my tutorial with my IP tutor later on this afternoon, and I am really hopeful that I’ll be given the green light for this crazy idea.

The journal is already being started, with the planning process being carefully documented. As I’m giving myself over completely to the NaNo process, I am using the two books from the NaNo team, No Plot? No Problem! and Ready, Set, Novel! and using prompts, exercises, and tips from these books as my main resources. Kinda scary, considering that I’ve just written, without someone telling me how my writing process should happen. And that’s why I’ve decided to do that with this project. I want to show that I’ve grown, adapted and developed as a writer during the project.

I also have to write a reflective essay at the end of the project to hand in alongside the actual written work that I hand in. It’ll be interesting to see how I feel at the end of the 30 day challenge, and to write in detail about how I feel the project has gone and my final opinions/thoughts.

I actually can’t wait to get started!