The Curious Evolution of Jennifer K. Oliver
A stroll through the mindfields
entries 
9th-Feb-2013 04:42 pm - Y10 writing workshop, and randomness
jenniferkoliver: (Wolves | Wolfwomen)
I can't believe it's been nearly a month since I did the Year 10 writing workshop. I wanted to blog about it way sooner, but lifestuff got in the way (as it often does). The workshop was great. There were about 25 students in attendance, which made me nervous to start with, but I had a teacher and teaching assistant there for support and to help keep things focused. I think the girls enjoyed it—at least, a few of them definitely did. There were a couple who weren't so into it, but that's to be expected; they didn't have any choice but to be there. A couple of students came to speak to me at the end, which was lovely. The very first thing I did was read out one of my short stories that works with their prompt "Other Worlds" and it seemed to go down well. Here are the topics and exercises from the workshop. Could be helpful if you're planning something similar )

I've also managed to write a solid few thousand words recently, passing the 50k mark on draft #2 of my steampunk novel. Thrilled! The last ten thousand or so words have been such a slog, but now I know I'm just over halfway with this rewrite, and it feels sweet.

Random: playing Oblivion last Saturday, questing my way across Tamriel, and at one point I turned around to see that my follower (who's sticking with me because his quest is currently active, plus I like the company) was missing his cuirass. So far, he hasn't found it, because he's still running around with me half-naked. Not that I'm complaining or anything. :)

And a couple of links for fun or interest:

Confident Writing - A blog that features articles, tips and suggestions to help you write with confidence.

Sci-Fi Weekender - Taking place in North Wales, March 1st – 3rd 2013. I'm linking to this because me and a friend are going. There are some awesome guests of honour—I will blog my squee about this in a few days!

We Apologise For Nothing, by Fightstar.
jenniferkoliver: (The X-Files)
There's nothing like getting back into the swing of things after an extended dry spell. Well, I say swing. It's more like a gentle sway right now, but it is movement all the same. It's been an odd month; in some ways productive and sociable, and in other ways frustrating and not very creative. I've got so much good stuff done offline and off the computer. Loads of exercise, too. I've moved up another belt notch since the beginning of October, and I feel fab. But writing has been a slog and that doesn't feel fab. I know you know what I mean. However, two nights ago I submitted a story to a magazine and I've been editing a few older stories this past week, so I'm finally, properly back in the game. Hooray!

Ooh, talking of games, I got round to finishing the main quest in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Will cut this for spoilers, even though the game is so old and beloved that I doubt many people don't already know what happens ) I also picked up a PlayStation Move controller and motion camera, along with Just Dance 3 and Dance Star Party. All I have to say at this point is: New Kids on the Block "You Got It (The Right Stuff)" - OH YEAH. Holy crap, I didn't realise they were still going.

Here's a small, annoying thing: a few weeks ago The Times ran a competition to write a 50 word ghost story. I wrote one I was happy with, bounced it around with a beta reader for a day or two, and then realised I'd got the deadline wrong by one day and missed the submissions. Bah!

Currently reading: Circus: Fantasy Under the Big Top, edited by Ekaterina Sedia. Great so far. Particularly liking the circus stories set in space/the future.

Scream, by Usher. My current workout song.
jenniferkoliver: (SPN | Castiel)
How awkward is it when you're walking along and someone comes out of a room or doorway and starts walking the same way as you, and you're sort of walking together but not quite, and you don't know each other, so one person has to speed up and one has to slow down until there's enough distance between you to walk comfortably again, and everyone involved feels a tad stupid? The answer is, most awkward!

I've been playing a spot of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion in my spare time (a little late to the party, as always), and all I can say is: epic whoa. Cutting this for lengthy rambles about large RPGs )

Aside from that, I've been writing, submitting, receiving rejections—a couple of them very encouraging—working, playing, and snuggling my cat. Me and my Storyslingers co-mod are hoping to host a Short Story Slam in July, so we're starting to plan for that.

I hit 40k words on the steampunk novel recently, which I estimate to be about halfway through. It's good, solid progress, and that is fab. Also, things that I started to think weren't relevant and may end up being cut are now becoming relevant. Is this a part of my brain that's one step ahead of the rest? Could be, could be! Thank you, brain. I'm still mostly running on instinct, still finding it an enterprise of discovery and excitement. But there's always that tiny, niggling fear that I'll lose the plot or veer too far from my (shady) goal.

And a couple of weeks ago I discovered:

Wake You Up and Insect Flick, by Coven. A relatively new dubstep act, who I hope continue to bring out quality beats!
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