Sunday, 12 March 2017

FanCon Project

This week was really productive to me. I was able to create a beautiful beginning to my shield for a Cosplay that I am doing with my sister-in-law. She and I are working on the character Johanna from Diablo 3.

Here she is in all of her glory: 

My sister in law is the seamstress and is sewing the base layer and is capable of so much awesomeness that I am in awe of her material handling prowess. You can see our YouTube project intro video Here.

My sister in law's YouTube handle is Ursa Minor Sewing, she did a badass Princess Peach Cosplay two years ago that won an award as best newbie at FanCon. For good reason: She's badass! You can see her YouTube Channel Here. Her Facebook page Here. Follow her on Twitter Here.

Honestly the Shield ate up a tonne of my time this week. It was focus number one because I'm finally taking my daughter to Disneyland and we will be gone for about a week in March. That week means that we cannot get that week into Cosplay prep and have to do our damnest to get'er done ahead of time. It's exciting to see the project coming together.

But what is this cosplay for?! you ask?!

FANCON 2017!!!!

For more details about FanCon 2017, please visit their webpage HERE!

It's the first truly northern Convention for fan types of all sorts! Two years ago they held their first event and it was such a smashing success they've had reason to do it yearly ever since. If you live in Northern BC and you haven't attended then you're missing out. Yukoners can also find some really great fun too since it's a lot closer to you than many other cons out there.

In any case, I am looking to complete the costume prior and the work that went into it this week is astronomical. Pictures of the shield are coming and if you follow Ursa Minor Sewing's channel then you will likely get the updates. In addition, I have my own YouTube page where I sing along with songs and will have a few comedy bits coming up. Please be friendly and follow!


Writer Ramsay Creds:

Link to YouTube Video of Collaboration between myself and Ursa Minor Sewing: 

Ursa Minor Sewing's Creds:


Sunday, 5 March 2017

Rejection is Getting Easier

Every day writers have to deal with rejection. It's a normal part of writing and submitting work. While getting a rejection letter at least once a week should get me down or might get the typical person down, it hasn't recently.

Lately I appreciate them a lot because I know that it only means "Onwards to people who will understand my work."

This time it's from Tradewind Books. A hand-written scrawl on my original letter saying they read my manuscript but decided to pass on it. Signature included.

I appreciate the time that this person took to tell me "thanks but no thanks," because I know he could have just thrown my mss into the garbage. Instead, I got my letter and mss back in my SASE and got to read their handwriting myself. I got to feel that first gut punch of recognizing my own SASE when I checked the mail, I got to feel the relief of knowing that at least I was hearing back and I got to know that at least I could cross them off of the list for that particular project.

I felt a lot: relief, fear, let down, happy, hopeful and then energized to continue to submit.

All-in-all, I'm getting better every day and that thrills me!

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Writing Routines

I am at a crossroads where I am ready to make a regular writing routine because I'm getting back into my health and my interests in a really significant way. The problem is that some of my interests are getting in the way of creating a really solid foundation of writing times.

I've started working out again and I wanted some sort of motivational goal to reach towards and I found it: The Skeena River Relay. I will be doing leg 4, the shortest and flattest stage of the relay and thank the stars for it! So what is my problem?

My problem is that my exercise seems like it takes all of my energy and mental effort to get through and to organize and force myself to go... so much so that I rarely have the actual time to write. That being said, I crawl into bed and have to crawl out to grab my journal at least five times before I can finally settle into sleep because I have these beautiful writing ideas or story additions and so my mind is ready at night when I'm ready for bed.

I can't stay up late because I'm naturally an early bird and staying up late screws me up for nearly a week. I know this sounds like a lot of complaining but I'm not complaining, merely pointing out the problems with my situation. Do you have these problems of balancing creative energy and physical energy?

 There are so many reasons to make sure I keep the physical exercise and I understand that it's the most important to making sure I'll still be around when my daughter graduates or marries or has children or rocks a crazy awesome career. No matter what she chooses I want to be sure I'm around to see it.

Here's the upsides to a writing routine:
  • dedicated time to write
  • dedicated time to the creative mind
  • guaranteed work daily, instead of loosely scheduling
  • opportunity to work on projects
Here's the downsides:
  • conflicts with other schedules
  • mentally exhausting for other pursuits
  • I workout - physically exhausting
  • yet another thing to schedule
 Are there alternatives to the hard-line structure of writing like many authors including Stephen King mention in their guides on how to write? Sure, but are they as effective? Not really.

You see, just saying "I'm going to write for an hour every day whenever I can find the time," means that I won't write most days. I tend to find important things to do besides write and thus scheduling it is going to be super important. Scheduling it around my gym time and running will matter as well.

I'll keep you all posted about it shortly.

In the meantime, I'm checking out these articles and taking their recommendations with piles of salt as I work my way around my own barriers and creative muse.

Friday, 17 February 2017

But then the beauty is good

I went for a walk last weekend with family and noticed that the light and the beauty around us were I had to take pictures.  The beauty of this bark was too much for me to handle so I took a picture. It's now the wallpaper on my phone. Do you ever get inspired by natural patterns?

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Northern British Columbia Book

I'm working on a new project for northwestern British Columbia and it's going to be a book about marketing in the rural area on social media, what the tricks are for streamlining success and what's important for small businesses to know about PR, liabilities and risks as well as some of the pitfalls that most businesses go through.

I did a bit of research and it seems that folks are pretty gung-ho to read a book or take a course but their level of involvement was pretty low. I have had 23 people give feedback about my request for information but none specified which they would prefer: a course, an eBook, an online thingy. Nothing. Just a bunch of likes.

Sometimes living int he northwest is frustrating! It's going in the book... don't worry. 

Saturday, 14 January 2017

SAS#1: Because You Loved Me

The  following video is me if you can imagine. Please take a look and follow. I'm just having fun singing along with songs...

Saturday, 17 December 2016

Working on Working

Have you ever been so distracted by something that was supposed to make your life easier that it just made your life harder?

I've been doing that for a few years now. I entered sales in order to make my life about writing more about my creative writing so that I could leave work at home and the problem became that I was trying to get into work that involved writing so I could write even more. Problem was, by writing for others I ended up too exhausted to write for myself.

So, I developed a company and a plan to get good at writing for others, my business plan actually won me a $5,000 grant last year. Again, still too tired to do any creative writing my health suffered. I wasn't outputting anything creative! What the deuce was the matter with me?!

Oh well, maybe my drive to succeed was getting in the way of a hobby that would never amount to anything anyways... and then I saw it. It took two years to see it, but I did. That line there was the problem... my hobby isn't my hobby, it's a passion. A passion that has seen me finish four books now (just completed another children's book last week) and has seen me win awards!

What else could I possibly need in a "hobby" and why do I hate the word hobby so much that I put it into quotation marks?

Time for truth?

I was scared of my writing.

Like, super scared.

Reason? It's something I'm passionate about and I love. If my company wasn't doing great I didn't take it personally, if it failed all-together, it didn't matter because I wasn't emotionally invested in it. But what if I failed at writing? What if my stuff is only good in my own mind and not in others'?

What if I was never published, hit by a bus and then buried under a tombstone that read "was never published, what a failure?!" That would seriously suck... and then I realized.

I've already been published. Multiple times in publications I like reading. Newspapers and local newsletters. These are all publications that actually affect my friends and family or communities and I'd already accomplished these things. So, the next thing to do was start filling the nail...

WTF is filling the nail?

Stephen King On Writing says a writer's job is to write and get as many rejections as possible. You put a nail on the wall pointy side out and you send out queries. When you get rejections back you skewer them on the nail until the damned thing is full... then you get a new nail. You start over and fill this one.

Once I focused on this task, the road seemed clear ahead.

Simplify: get rid of this notion that owning a successful business is what would make me feel good about myself and start writing again. Stop focusing on the tasks that are meant to buy you freedom and use the freedom you already have to write.

Start getting some scripts circulating again to agents and publishers.

Get writing again...

Nailed it.... (I know you're groaning...)