Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Friday, 29 May 2009

Sunny weather

I've gone all orange for this post and no, I haven't been Tangoed! I'm trying to inject a bit of today's sun into the post. As you can see from the photographs my Clematis has been out enjoying the sun and so have I. I have to admit that it was just a tad too hot for my comfort earlier on but it's nice to have the opportunity to go out into the garden and play hide and seek with my daughter. It's the last day of the half term holidays today, so it was nice to be able to spend time with her before she goes back.
On the writing front, Still no news on any of my work that is out there at the moment. I'm just hoping that no news will bring some good news soon. I have sent my latest article in and pitched some more ideas for articles to the editor of a new Shropshire web site, and the editor seems keen for me to send more articles in, so I will. It's such fun researching as some of the subjects for the articles I'm doing aren't something I know a lot about . But it just shows you that with a bit of determination and willingness to get out there and learn about a subject you can write informative articles that editors want.
Tonight I am having a break from writing to have a bath and finish the current novel I'm reading - Kate Mosse's Sepulchre. I've only got three chapters to go and it really is an excellent book set in two different time periods following the lives of two different generations of a family but their lives intertwine in the middle. Intriguing.
I sent another letter to the Shropshire Star - this time about their horoscopes. I do think I'm going to have to cut back reading that paper because it just encourages me to send letters in! It's pure displacement behaviour though and I know I should be concentrating on my short stories and getting them out there. I'm battling with that one at the moment. I had the one published in Australia but then a couple were declined here in the UK. It's so hard trying to carry on writing and sending them out when you haven't had an acceptence for a while. It's a testing time! But I see rejection as a challenge. "So you didn't like that story did you, Mr/Mrs/Miss/Ms Editor, well what about this one then?!" I'm a bit like Sue Moorcroft in that respect - bloody minded! I think it helps in this case. If I didn't have such a tenacious attitude I would have stopped writing the stories and sending them out after the first rejection!
I also threw caution to the wind and registered for the Open University Children's Literature course starting in October 2009. You see what happens? We have a bit of sun and it goes to my head! I'd been thinking of doing it for a while and decided to go for it. I may regret it by Christmas, but if I start moaning about it in this blog I want you to point me back to today's post and remind me why I wanted to do it!
I also came up with an idea for the next Wrekin Writers' meeting. We have a novel group and a short story group, writers clinic an hour before the main meeting starts, so I've emailed my idea to the Chairman/Chairperson/Chairwoman to see what she thinks.
I think a lot of the key to success in this writing lark is acting on your convictions. Having the nerve and daring to write something despite your own and possibly other's misgivings, and actually being brave enough to send it out there. I've sent a fair few submissions out since January and have been lucky enough to have a few successes in there. On the flip side I've also had a lot of declinations. But I'm still going. It's like in any line of work you have to go with the flow and take the rough with the smooth.
I'm just so lucky to be able to do what I love - writing. And I am thankful for every minute that I am given to write. I feel alive and engaged with myself and the world when I write. Characters come to life and share their stories with me, which I then try to craft into a story that others may like to read. How cool a job is that?! But I don't need to tell you how good writing feels as you already know.
Enjoy the weather and the journey of writing. Don't give up.
Julie xx
PS Does anyone know why my post has come out in one huge lump instead of gaps between the paragraphs? The gaps where in there when I typed it?!


Suzanne said...

Hate to whine when everyone else's so happy, but today was far too hot for me. Sat wilting in the shade and am now exhausted. I don't like the cold either, mind you, so I suppose the weather will never make me happy.

You're making terrific progress, Julie. Don't let all the short story remarketing opportunities get you down. You're a great writer and you will sell again. (If I told you how long ago I last sold a short story you'd think me insane for keeping at it.)

Fee said...

Dear Julie,

I am glad you enjoyed the sunshine yesterday as did your clematis.

It is the layout of the blog that affects the spacing. I had this problem with my previous blog. I put a gap between a heading and my typing and it just wouldn't allow it. Not sure if any technological people who are far better at this stuff than me could help you with a html code or something to enable this to happen.

I wish I could be as inspired as you. The thing with me is I have to be happy with my writing before I submit it. I therefore go over the quality and fear if I am not happy with it no one else will be so hence not much is getting sent out at the moment.

One day my confidence will grow and according to Simon next WW meeting will help with that. I can't wait.

Best of luck with your quest.


Julie P said...

Yes it was rather hot wasn't it and it looks like today is going to be the same. I like the sunshine but prefer it a bit cooler. Because my daughter is so fair I'm loathe to let her outside when it's like this and tend to smother her in sun cream, put a hat on her and keep her in the shade until it's cooler.

I have this huge, hideous black floppy hat that I wear in the sun - not very trendy but it keeps the sun off me!

To a certain extent, I'm the same as Fee. I worry about the quality of my work but there comes a point when that worrying becomes negative and disabling, and your self esteem and confidence in your ability to write something publishable takes a nose dive.

I think the key is to not stress about it too much. If you get to the point where you're sick of the sight of your work, put it away for a few days and then have a look at it again with fresh eyes and a hopefully more positive attitude. But inevitably you just have to swallow hard and let your work go. It's not easy, and I still baulk at sending work out now. But I keep sending work out - that's the important bit. Don't let your fears overide your desire to send work out. You don't know until you try!

Have fun!
Julie xx

Simon Whaley said...

You may not have been tangoed but you've been 'Umbongoed'!

Jaye said...

Wow, love the new blog design! Summer is officially here now :)