Sunday, 23 January 2011

Look what I found

Combing through my novel, I realise I need to end this ‘look’ and ‘looked’ obsession. It’s getting out of hand.

I also must ditch the fixation with eyes being the window to the soul when there are so many ways of telling how a character feels or reacts.   

Body language for starters - how are their shoulders, stooped, thrown back like it's the 80's and they are wearing shoulder pads, are they moving them around because they're stiff?

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Brain Dead Entertainment

My first film review has been posted on fantastic site If you are considering watching this movie, please, please read my review as you need to be warned.

If you like big breasted women who like to take their tops off at every opportunity, appalling acting and a seriously bad script, watch Brain Dead. Go on. I dare you.

One of my favourite scenes in the movie, because it killed off yet another bad actor

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Ramblings of a Frustrated Crime Writer: About Me

Ramblings of a Frustrated Crime Writer: About Me: "I began contributing to magazines when I was 15-years-old and had my first piece in Jackie magazine - a piece on superstitions. From then ..."

Monday, 17 January 2011

Things not to say in an exercise video/DVD

How energising is exercise?

Trying to get fit and lose a bit of weight, so have taken to using exercise tapes.  Here are some of the phrases I have grown to despise.

1- 'Feel the burn' - usually when I am holding my abs in and trying not to topple over.

2- 'This is one of my favourites' - unless the instructor is talking about a scrumptious cream cake, I don't want to know this exercise that is killing me is one the chiselled she man or he man loves.

3- 'This will tighten you buns' - buns is an American word.  I hear it and I think of the iced bun I can't have.

4- 'You did well today' - How do you know I actually did anything?  I could have passed out from the exertion.

5- 'Looking good girl' - Naw.  I actually look like a beached whale that's just given birth.

Friday, 14 January 2011

Let’s get physical (I'd rather not)

Don’t know about you, but because I spend so much time sitting down writing away, my waistline has started to suffer.  So, I have begun a new fitness regime and it is killing me. 

Wouldn’t it be fantastic if there was a pill you could take that would absorb most of the calories from your food?  Well, when I say food I actually mean chocolate. 

Until that happens, I'm stuck with exercising.  I use the Ten Minute Solution DVDs, because ten minutes at a time is about all I can take before I'm dog tired.

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Do you use certain words too much?

I read about author Jane Lovering putting her writing through the site in this month’s Writing Magazine. 

Wordle creates a word cloud of your writing with the words you use the most highlighted and is a brilliant site. 

When I used it, the words it highlighted were – like, one, even, know, feel, away and smile.  Guess it’s time to comb that manuscript. 

Friday, 7 January 2011

Doctor Who cash

I’m a huge fan of Doctor Who (at least I was when David Tennant was the Doctor) and came across copies of the money they made especially for The Runaway Bride episode.

The David Tennant notes are so good I wanted to share them with you. 

Write a winning title

Stressing over what to call that novel?  Worried that your title lacks the oomph needed to make it stand out?

Using the Lulu Titlescorer may not be the answer. 

My titles – Vile City (my work in progress) and How Kirsty Gets Her Kicks (scheduled for publication by Pulp Press in March 2012) were disappointingly low.  So, I tried some of the bestselling books of all time and they didn’t fair much better.

But, hey it’s a bit of fun.  Check it out here -

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Would it really have happened to Lisa Dingle?

I’ve just finished watching Emmerdale and can’t believe how ridiculous the storyline is about Lisa Dingle being raped by creepy Derek in the factory where they were working after hours.

The reason I’m shaking my head is because a woman with Lisa Dingle’s strength of character, who is no stranger to dealing with recalcitrant males (husband Zak is probably more scared of her than he is of any man, and for good reason) would have battered his melt in*.
* smashed his face in/battered him/ handed him his teeth on a plate 

How many of us would have cheered if Derek had been sent packing with a bloody nose/a part of his anatomy missing? 

This storyline is yet another example of the way women are treated in fiction. They are either cunning whores who marry men for their money, or hapless victims of depraved crimes.

I know that women are raped and it’s a sickening crime, which should carry the death penalty in my opinion or lead to castration, but there are just as many women who fight off their would be attackers. I know this because I’ve done it myself and a straw poll of friends showed we have all had experiences of fending off unwanted advances – usually with a boot in the balls. 

I’m delighted that my first novel, which will be published this year by Pulp Press, will feature a thoroughly modern woman who is flesh and blood and more in keeping with today’s women – one who doesn’t take any nonsense from anyone.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Hopeless Hewlett Packard

I bought an laptop from the UK Hewlett Packard online shop on Boxing Day.  Received the laptop very quickly and was happy with it.  Then I tried to register the warranty.  I got the statutory one year and they gave me two years free. 

A week later after countless communications with HP my warranty is still not registered.  According to the notebook there is only seven months on the warranty when its brand new and it should be one year as standard.

Tried to register a different way only to be told my 'care pack' (their bum fluff name for warranty - more like no care pack) was registered to someone called Graham.  No idea who that is.  But hey, according to them he purchased the laptop.  Bit worrying.  Do I have a stalker?

If you're reading this Graham, I would be worried that Hewlett Packard are giving out your email address to a stranger.  You could be a girl and I could be sending you pictures of my knob. 

Tried to use their site to register, but would ya know the registration part for warranty is down.  Of course the one to get you to part with cash is still functioning.  Funny that. 

What is it with companies who take your money and then give you two fingers when you try to get the service you paid for? 

Don't worry HP, I won't abandon you.  I'll keep at you until you give me what I paid for. 

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Bringing my characters alive

Spot the zombie

Sometimes it can be difficult to keep track of charcaters when you're writing. Where are they in a certain scene? Have you accidentally brought back someone who's meant to be dead? 

As well as writing charcater guides so I know what is happening to each character at any given time, I have a novel way of keeping track. 

I got myself some Horrified B Movie Victims and I place them in appropiate poses. Every figure represents a character in my zombie novel.

Things I have learned about peer reviewing sites…

You need to know who to listen and who to ignore. Some people on these sites are just stirrers. Then there’s the pedantics who obsess about the layout of your work to the point of rudeness (many sites don’t allow you to properly format your work because it would take up too much space – Youwriteon for instance) and who don’t actually comment on what you’ve written.

You will read things you don’t want to hear, but if they help your work you need to listen. Don’t get all precious. Leave your ego at the door.

Avoid tit for tat reviews. Getting personal is a waste of your time and energy. I try to avoid reviewing the work of someone who has reviewed mine, especially when they have been particularly hard hitting in their review, because if I say anything that might be construed as negative about theirs they will assume it’s a tit for tat even when it’s not.

Be helpful and constructive when you review people’s work. Even if you think it’s not up to scratch, try and balance your comments with the good and the bad.  

Be polite and encouraging. Treat people the way you would want to be treated.

If you expect to be told how wonderful your writing is, steer clear of these sites.

DI Duncan Waddell - Detective in a Coma Book 2

What to do when your phone is stolen

I've been lucky in that I've never had my phone stolen, at least until last weekend. At first I thought I'd droppe...