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Forum nameNewcomers' Board
Topic subjectSlinking back in from the dark
Topic URLhttp://www.fmwriters.com/community/dc/dcboard.php?az=show_topic&forum=576&topic_id=266
266, Slinking back in from the dark
Posted by 1351, Tue Aug-21-12 02:48 PM
Hi everybody.

I'm actually a returning member, but from so long ago that my account's been lost to either my memory or that of the site's membership database.

By night, I'm a very-slightly-published writer of short horror and speculative fiction - I've had odd bits in mags including the late, lamented Cthulhu Sex but have no pro sales under my belt.

Back in the what passes for the real world, I'm a technology journalist who occasionally moonlights in other fields. I currently write and edit for ExpertReviews.co.uk and Computer Shopper magazine (UK edition - there's a hilarious tale of swashbuckling trademark theft which explains why we're nothing to do with the defunct US mag of the same name), in addition to freelancing for other titles. My work has also appeared in Wired (UK, pseudonymously), The Sunday Times (entirely without credit) and a tech book which had a real ISBN and everything but has since sunk beneath the waves of memory to wherever it is that unsuccessful publishing projects go.

I'm currently on a shortish sabbatical, ostensibly because I actually want to get some writing done that DOESN'T involve motherboards, video games or arguments with PRs about why the products their clients send us for review really ought to be the same as the ones they propose selling to the general public.

I'm good at beginnings but terrible at actually finishing stories (I have several in a half-completed state), am brilliant at procrastinating (I'm doing it now!) and am trying to complete a novella about elements of my past that still scare the hell out of me.

Non-writing related interests include cat herding, cycling, powerlifting, RPGs of all forms, queer activism, death metal and hanging around with goths for so long that - despite my protestations about not being one - they chose me to lead them (trans: I admin a small gothic social group. It's fun. We go on walks and have picnics and stuff).

I've just realised that this reads distressingly like a less bullet-point-oriented version of my CV and that I should probably shut up soon.

TL;DR version: I'm here because I need a bit of a kick up the arse in the hope of getting some stories finished and - just maybe - not spending my entire writing career reviewing computer hardware, shiny though it is.
268, Welcome back
Posted by maripat, Tue Aug-21-12 03:58 PM
I'm glad you made your way back here. That's good that you can start stories. A lot of writers tense up and can't start at all. As for finishing, perhaps you'd like to try the Weekly and Daily Goals board to help you get through the rough spots of finishing the story. Here's the link:


I find just writing down my goals helps me to work on finishing a project.

We've changed a lot of things around over the years so if you can't find something, just ask one of us.

See you around the site.

269, RE: Welcome back
Posted by 1351, Tue Aug-21-12 04:35 PM
Thank you for the warm welcome and I suspect you're right about keeping goal lists.

My line manager at work had to virtually beat the habit into me before I realised that it made it a lot easier to actually get things done, so it stands to reason that it should carry over here.

270, RE: Slinking back in from the dark
Posted by CatrinP, Tue Aug-21-12 05:08 PM
Welcome back.

I was interested in reading your pseudo CV. There are a few of us techies around - I'm a programmer by daylight, though I promise not to talk IT stuff. Well not too much anyway.

It's also nice to have another short story writer around, especially of horror.

I see you've asked to join Private Roving. It's a great way to get the push to finish stories.

Word Wars in chat are another way of getting words on the page. Or just talking about your stories - it's amazing how enthusiasm helps motivate.

Hope to see you around the traps.
272, RE: Slinking back in from the dark
Posted by 1351, Tue Aug-21-12 06:28 PM
Thanks Cat - I've been having a bit of a poke around and am finding quite a bit of mental lubricant about the place.

I tend to be a bit shy of live chat these days but I'll definitely pop my head around the door at some point in the next day or so. ;)

273, Welcome back!
Posted by magic seeker, Tue Aug-21-12 08:18 PM
Hi 1351! :wave: I'm glad you found your way back to FM!

You might want to think about trying NaNoWriMo -- it can be grueling, since you try to complete a 50k novel during the month of November, but it's one way to give a serious go at finishing a project. It's harder to procrastinate with a 1667 words per day deadline. :wink:

If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.
276, RE: Welcome back!
Posted by 1351, Wed Aug-22-12 10:30 AM
>You might want to think about trying
>NaNoWriMo -- it can be grueling, since
>you try to complete a 50k novel during the
>month of November, but it's one way to
>give a serious go at finishing a project.
>It's harder to procrastinate with a 1667
>words per day deadline. :wink:


I've contemplated NoNoWriMo before, but I'll be back at work by November and it's pretty much the worst possible month for us, as we have to put together two months' issues in about five weeks before Xmas, which means I'm already writing 3,000 words of copy and getting home at 10pm most days at that time of year.

While I'm off, I'm trying to apply the same sort of discipline to writing and editing my fiction on my own schedule, though.