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Saturday 31 October 2009


November is National Novel Writing Month. For the first time I am going to attempt this crazy competition. In the past I've always put it off as it seems like a crazy amount of work - 50000 words in 30 days. Of course it's still a ridiculous amount of work, and I don't really believe that I'll complete it. But if nothing else, I'm hoping a sizable chunk of my novel will get written. I WILL write something every day.

The novel I'm going to write is one that has been sitting in my mind for years. I even wrote the first few pages a few years ago but never got any further. I want the motivation, I need to write this. And if I don't do it now, what's to say I'll do it later - now is better than never. I still have a lot of other work to do, but I am going to give it my best shot. And who knows - I might actually finish (but don't hold your breath).

Monday 19 October 2009

Writing as Therapy

This year at uni we are studying Creative Non-Fiction and a lot of this is autobiography and memoir based - writing about yourself. Now we are told that our course is in no way meant for therapy but it is my belief that this type of writing lends itself very heavily to therapeutic writing just because there is so much about memory and self-analyse within it.

I personally believe that writing can solve a lot of personal problems - when my life isn't go the way I want it to, or I feel confused, I let myself write it out. By this I mean I sit with a pen and paper and just let myself write whatever comes into my mind. When I am doing this for self-analysis I focus more on myself and always write in the first person. I have found that quite often I work out what I'm actually worried about (and then I can address it) using this method. And though it is a valid type of writing, I feel that it is too personal to show the world - it is for my eyes alone.

The writing we do for this module is the next step up from this very personal self-analysis - working it into something publishable. But my point in this post is basically to say that writing can be very useful on a personal level and can help you realise who you are - it doesn't always have to be about getting published (though if this is what you want, then go for it).

Saturday 17 October 2009

Running and Reaching

I was watching Casanova today (the BBC production written by Russell T. Davies, starring David Tennant) and it brought up a point that I have often thought about. It basically stated that it was better to have loved and lost than never loved at all; better to strive for a need and never reach it than have everything you need with nothing to live for.

As someone who has loved, fully and completely, with nothing in return, I know that I felt more alive then than I have in the rest of my life. In fairness I never lost (or in my mind I didn't) as we stayed amazing friends, and still are, never becoming more than that. So I would definitely agree with the first statement - loving is better than not loving, even when the second option is the safer one.

The second statement poses a problem for me as I've never needed anything. I barely even want anything - instead I create needs and wants that are fake and unreal. Though I always know that they are fake so it doesn't really work. I've often felt that I have no reason to keep going, day by day, as I don't NEED or WANT anything - I have nothing to run after. So I guess I would agree with the second statement as I know how hollow this kind of living is - all I need is something to want/need and so I will keep searching for it and hope that this searching is enough to propell me forward.

Friday 16 October 2009

You Must Write

I am not a professional writer and though it would undoubtably be amazing to be published, I am sure that if that day never comes I'll be content that that's the way it is. The reason - WRITING IS BLOODY HARD WORK. I am in actual fact lazy. OK, I'm not necessarily proud of it but I prefer to sit at home playing pointless games on facebook to having to deal with real life and actually do some work. The thing about writing is that not only is it hard work, but the only motivation you have comes from yourself. At the moment I am doing a lot of writing but only because I have a close group of friends (all of whom are writers themselves) to make me sit down and do the work. Not to mention that if I didn't, I would fail my degree - something I'm not planning on doing. But to make writing really work, you have to do it every day. This is advice I've read over and over but it is only by doing it everyday that you realise just how important this practice is. Perhaps over time (I'm hoping) it will become part of my routine to write and so I will continue honing my craft and enjoying the process. Because the other important aspect of writing is that you have to love it - if you didn't you would have to be getting paid an awful lot to keep going (and we all know how rare that is).

I know I will always write because I am compelled to. But without motivation and determination that is as far as it will ever get for me. To be honest, I don't mind THAT much; but it would be nice to know that all this effort is leading somewhere. I don't want to find myself giving up - because that leads to the guilt and the shame and the pointlessness of it all which I find it best to avoid. So my advice: only write if you HAVE to write because you would die if you didn't. And if you're going to write - do it every day and give it the best damn shot you can. Then again, you can ignore me completely and just continue on as you are - I'm just sharing what I have learnt and what I believe to anyone out there who wishes to listen.

Monday 12 October 2009

Life's Too Short to Read Proust

I am going to start by saying that I have never read Proust and so in fairness, the title of this post isn't my opinion. But it is the opinion of one of my tutors. Generally I just want to focus on the life's too short part.

When reading especially, I have this habit of wanting to read anything and everything even if it doesn't grab me at the beginning - once I've started it, I want to finish it. Usually it's just to get it out of the way but also it's almost as if I feel that I will let myself down if I don't finish it. When my tutor stated in class 'Life's too short to read Proust' part of me wanted to go and find the 14 volumes of his autobiography and get stuck in. But the other part of me, the part that wants to change and grow and learn decided that she had a point. I will never be able to read everything before I die so I probably shouldn't be wasting time with things I find boring (unless of course they are necessary, as in reading them for uni).

We don't have a lot of time on this earth - even if we don't notice how precious time is as we're living through it, we won't last forever. And it is my personal belief that once you die there is no afterlife, just the memories of you that others hold. So the only important thing in life can be what you do and how you act. If you knew you only had 24hrs to live, you probably wouldn't spend that time reading something that you don't care about; I know I wouldn't. But the fact of the matter is that you could die tomorrow (though I hope you, or I, don't) and what would you have used your time alive for? Have you wasted it or have you used it to get the experiences you need and/or want? I'm not suggesting for a moment that you should be wastful of your money, leave your job or have no regard for your future - just because you might die tomorrow doesn't mean that you will and you will have to continue your life and live through the repercussions of your decisions today. But that's really another post.

So to sum up - is reading this blog improving your life in anyway or are you wasting time reading about opinions you don't care about and that later, you will wish you had been doing something better with your time?

Thursday 8 October 2009

Review: Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs

Firstly let me just tell you I went to see this film in 2-D so if you're looking for reviews of the effects - look elsewhere as I don't like 3-D films. OK, now onto the film, you probably don't need to know that it was a deserted cinema, just me and my bf with the entire screen to ourselves, but there you go - I have put it in now.

I totally enjoyed this film. It is funny with enough serious undertones for you to notice but to completely ignore if you so choose. Flint Lockwood is a young inventor set on saving his small town which is quickly losing money and colour. When his newest invention actually works he starts adventures with his best friend Steve (an awesome monkey fitted with a thought transmittor allowing him to communicate) and the weather girl on the scene, Sam Sparks. The invention: a device that turns water into food! The story follows how his success effects Flint and the rest of the town, unti it starts to go horribly wrong. Although Steve steals the spotlight from the main characters quite often, all the characters are entirely loveable - except perhaps the Mayor - and totally memboral.

I would recommend this film for anyone who wants to get away from real life for a little while (afterall, isn't that the reason we go to the cinema?). Aimed at kids, this animated movie will enthrall, sicken, and homour the entire family. Be prepared to be showered - in every food you can imagine.

Sunday 4 October 2009


Today I got up at 9.45am and am already feeling the benefits. I have more energy and motivation to get things done. Already this morning I have had a shower, created and printed off my C.V (time to get started looking for a Christmas job) and now I'm writing this blog.

Normally I don't get up until I have to, and days when I don't have to, you'd be lucky to see me before 1 or 2 pm! But I'm beginning to think that's part of my problem. By the time I drag myself out of bed, half the day has already gone so I feel guilty about missing so many daytime hours. So to make myself feel better I watch crap and eat - proven not to be the best solution. So now I'm trying to make a difference. I am going to bed before midnight and am going to try and get up before 10am every day, including those when I don't have class.

If you're like me and usually stay in bed for as long as possible only to find yourself unmotivated and still tired, try going to bed earlier and getting up earlier. I can almost guarantee it will be really difficult to begin with (it has taken me at least a week to get to the stage where I am happy to do it) but believe me, the results will be worth it.