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

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Procrastination and an unhealthy obsession with my vacuum cleaner!

Day two of the 'No TV' experiment and I have to say that I have faired better today. This is partly because I have, from nowhere, developed an unnatural obsession with cleaning the house instead. Now I do clean the house at some point, but only under extreme duress and when I have nothing better to do. But today I was well away. I was all for ripping the elderly and, quite frankly, past it carpets and having new ones - that's how bad my cleaning urge was. It just seemed that no matter how hard I cleaned the kitchen floor I couldn't get it clean enough! This is most unlike me. I have replaced one bad writing habit with another equally creativity squashing activity. And no, I'm not pregnant before anyone asks.

I did have a few mins outside in the back garden this morning, before my cleaning frenzy started, where I did manage to jot down a couple of ideas for short stories, but that's as far as my writing plans got today. I might work on one of them tonight when my daughter goes to bed. Oh and I've seen no more lovely policemen today (yet) but I have spoken to one on the phone about the disturbance outside my house yesterday. Mystery solved and all is well.

As you can see from the photos my neighbour from across the road brought over the trampoline for my daughter, and she loves it. And I managed to put it back together - they'd taken the legs and poles off it. I was determined to show the world that I could put something together without the assistance of a man! My daughter was suitably impressed as she watched me wield my spanner and tighten the nuts!! Girl power and all that. It was quite a feat of engineering I can tell you - but not as difficult as the fun we had trying to get it into the garden. It was too tall to go through the gate due to the wooden bar across the gate frame, so the chap next door to me flexed his muscles and it went over his back fence into mine! I know the safety net thingie isn't on yet, but it will be by tonight. Begrudgingly, I do need a man who can to help me with that.

I'm still frustrated at how long it takes to finish writing a story, editing it, editing it some more, submitting it and then waiting weeks or months for a reply which, more often than not, seems to be a rejection! It takes FOREVER!! I'm sure most of you will know what I mean. But I'm still on track for finishing the latest batch of short stories and will be sending the first couple of them out the middle of next week. Wish me luck! And good luck to everyone out there who is in the same boat. Julie xx
PS The other photo is a picture of my cats especially for Teresa Ashby! Cara, the gardener, is at the front of the photo giving me the 'Cat from Shrek' innocent look, and her brother Cody behind her is giving me the Shaggy 'It Wasn't Me' look!


Olivia Ryan said...

Love the pics, Julie - both the cats and your lovely daughter! Well done with your hard work on the short stories. I know ... it does all seem to take forever, but (sorry, I seem to keep repeating myself), the more you send out, the less this seems to be a problem, because you then get a steady stream (OK, trickle. OK, drip!) of responses coming back. And even if they're mostly rejections, you know that sooner or later, definitely, one's going to be accepted! That's what keeps us going, isn't it! Good luck. x

Julie P said...

Hi, Olivia. I'm glad you like the pics - she really is quite taken with the trampoline - she'd got a very small toddler 'Tigger' one that's got a handle she holds on to when she jumps but she's out grown it now and is well chuffed to have a 'big girl bouncer'!

The cats are now fast asleep on the sofa all curled up with each other. In fact, it's hard to tell where one starts and the other one ends!

I'm still determined to carry on regardless! I know I can do it as I've done it once, so I am more positive about it than I was before I got a short story published. You're right, the only way of possibly getting published is to write the stories and send them out regularly. If you don't, then it's not going to happen.

Everyone has been, and continues to be, so supportive so I am incredibly lucky.

Julie xx

klahanie said...

Greetings Julie,
Two days without television. Speaking of television, much to my astonishment, in Britain we need a T.V. licence. Luckily I have passed the T.V. licence test and can now remove the 'L' sticker from the screen.
Sorry..where was I? Oh yes, cleaning and vacuuming (although nowhere near our dog), can be most therapeutic. A good distraction from television.
Good luck with your writing and editing.
Kind wishes, Gary.

Julie P said...

Thanks, Gary. I forgot about your dog who hates the vacuum cleaner - I promise I won't do it when he's about. I shall resist the urge.

Don't get me started on the extortion that is the TV license - do you think I could get a rebate for low useage seeing as I'm not watching it so much?

I'm looking forward to completing my challenge this week of actually sending a couple more stories out.

Take care and have fun whatever you're doing. Julie xx

Simon Whaley said...

But hang on a minute - if you didn't have a television - you wouldn't have known how to deal with the Mafia gang in that car outside your house yesterday. Oh all right, they were probably 3 drunken lads peeved off over whose round it was, but it's not as exciting, and that wouldn't have made a good story on television.

As for the vacuum cleaner - use it to hoover up the rejection slips, but that's all. Don't do any dusting - it comes in useful for jotting down those ideas, when you don't have your notepad and pen with you!

Julie P said...

Hi, Simon! My illusion of a mafia gang were shattered by the lovely policeman who rang me to say it was only two brothers fighting and all was well! But still in my mind I like the idea of the mafia better - much more exciting!

I still find myself taking a glance out of the window - I wouldn't want to miss anything!

Dusting, what's that?


Fee said...

Hi Julie

You are not the only one with a cleaning fetish at the moment. I want to repaint the house and then put in new carpets. That was the plan at the beginning of 2007 and I got most of the house painted. Moving furniture without a man was a huge achievement for me too. I did a little bit each day and left one small bit in the lounge unfinished. Unfortunately it still is unfinished so the new carpets won't be coming in yet.

As for your cats they are adorable.

I am so glad your daughter loves her large trampoline. Sometimes we do need men around to give us a hand LOL.

Best wishes to you all


Julie P said...

I had to move the trampoline yesterday to mow the back lawn - my daughter thought I was Super Man!! It's not that heavy really and I dragged it, but she still thought it was 'cool!' Still haven't got the safety netting on it because Dave couldn't figure it out either!! (so much for men giving us a hand) But I'm going to look at again now and try and get it on just to annoy Dave!

Julie xx

Teresa Ashby said...

Gorgeous cats, Julie. Cara looks a lot like a cat I had - Huggy! He was a wild cat, rescued from the docks - called Huggy because, well he liked to hug x

That trampoline looks fun!