October 10, 2017

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I’ve loaded up on new music recently and one I’ve really been enjoying is Newton Faulkner’s latest album, Hit The Ground Running. His albums can be a bit hit and miss, but this one is a real winner. The first couple of tracks are upbeat and fun, and then it dips into some almost funk and blues songs that really work for me. This is one of the upbeat ones, entitled: Smoked Ice Cream.

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Current chain of writing days: 2

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For the past two weeks the Lady Holly have been making our way across Malaysian Borneo. It is a hot and humid place thanks to it’s proximity to the equator, full of jungle, quick and heavy tropical rain, noodles, and unfortunately quite a lot of palm plantations.

Borneo, for any who don’t know, is a large island surrounded on four sides by Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and the lower half of Vietnam — and is made up of three countries; Malaysia Borneo, Indonesian Borneo, and the very small nation of Brunei.

My first introduction to Borneo came when during a flight to Europe last year we stopped over in Brunei and I had no idea where we were. Some quick research dispelled my ignorance, I learnt some basic facts about Borneo (those listed above), and then forgot all about it as we were already on one adventure and weren’t needing to plan our next one just yet.

That was until months later, when attending a friends book launch, the Lady Holly picked up a lonely planet on Borneo. She flicked through, showing me one amazing photo after another, and by the time she had made it to the back cover we were in agreeance that, yeah, we were going to go there.

Holly did a bunch of research and put together an itinerary of one amazing activity after another. I did nothing, maybe I cooked, either way, she rocks and planned us a killer trip. We booked it all in and then had to trudge through a half year wait until we could finally get on that plane and dive into the photos that had won us over all those months ago.

Now, I could go through out whole trip and tell you each incredible thing we did one after another, but I have the feeling that that would be more fun for me than for you, so, in short: We visited humid rainforests dripping with wildlife, peeled leeches from our ankles while trying not to freak out, floated down kinabatangan river spotting monkeys and birds, drank beer while watching the jungle soak itself with rain, scuba dived and snorkeled through island reefs brimming with fish and sea turtles, and ate, and bused, and sweated, and watched movies, and waited in airports, and read books, and discovered something new every day. It was magic.

Because that’s what travelling does, it exposes you to the new, and when that happens you can’t help but learn things.

So, I thought I’d finish by jotting down the… 

Things I Learned in Borneo:

  1. I’m fairly terrible at keeping up my writing while on holiday. I started out strong, but then got quite sick, then had activity filled days, and in the end I decided to just lean into it. I don’t think it’s the worse thing. While I like having a big number for my consecutive days of writing, some time off can be beneficial, and has left me extra keen to jump back in.
  2. Something will always go wrong. This is my mantra for any time I travel. If you’re expecting to travel and have everything go perfectly then you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. There’s too many factors involved, too many ways something can and will go wrong. By acknowledging this fact it means that when it does you can simply say, ‘I knew this would happen,’ and get on with it, rather than get disappointed. Works for life in general too, but that’s another blog. For this trip, I got sick. I actually had gastro the day before we left, then contracted a flu two days in. It was a bad one, I can’t remember the last time I felt so rotten. I could barely get out of bed, was sweating and delusional, and I couldn’t even hold onto a thought during the worst of it. When it was clear I wasn’t getting better, I took some antibiotics and quickly started improving. It’s the first time to my knowledge that I’ve taken antibiotics and wow, they’re awesome. I got out of bed and back on track. Not to say it wasn’t upsetting but in the long run it was a small setback to a great trip.
  3. Fortune may favour the bold but it also favours the prepared. E.g. the antibiotics I took we had on hand because we’d seen a travel doctor before going. While things will go wrong, being prepared minimises the effect. 
  4. Noodles are literally good for any meal. Yes, even breakfast.
  5. Plan a holiday around seeing wildlife and you’re pretty much guaranteed to have a good time. That’s a more personal one. Nature and wildlife may not be for everyone, but for me it meant I always had something beautiful and interesting to look at and photograph, as well as providing us with that recharge that only nature can provide and that I miss by living in a city. It’s also cost effective.
  6. No matter how hard I try I am destined to always break a pair of sunglasses while on holiday. Always. Sometimes multiple times.
  7. I should read more. While I didn’t write as much as I thought I would I did read a bunch. How much? Five and a half novels in two weeks, my friends. It was bliss. By allowing myself permission to disconnect from my phone, as well as having plenty of down time, it meant I could commit to reading as much as I usually want to, and was so much more beneficial than scrolling through apps on my phone like I usually would. One of the books was Stephen King’s On Writing, in which he says aspiring writers need to do two things; write a lot and read a lot. He’s not wrong, and I’m hoping to bring back this renewed passion into my usual routine.
  8. My beard is quite good at protecting my face from sunburn; my thinning hairline, not so much. You can read that one any way you like, but I choose to see it as; things always even out.
  9. You should go visit Borneo. Honestly, there was so much to see and do, the people were friendly and relaxed, never pushy, and getting around wasn’t a problem. It’s a wonderful part of the world and one we’re hoping to get back to one day.
  10. Holly’s the best. You should get yourself a Holly.

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It’s good to be back.

Talk soon

Damian

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September 20, 2018

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Inside Out by Avalanche city is the blog song this week. Avalanche City is a singer songwriter from New Zealand, and creates folk pop treats of harmonious delight. Or, at least, I think he does. Enjoy.

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Current chain of writing days: 52

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I’ve been writing my weekend flash fiction stories for four weeks now, and they’re definitely scratching the itch I’d wanted them to. Not only do they ensure that I keep up with writing over the weekend, but they’re coming together better than I had hoped. In fact, I’m liking them a little too much, and have to be careful that they don’t leak into my weekday writing, which I use to chip away at whatever major project I’m currently working on.

In order to stop this from happening I have a strict rule that flash fiction writing can only take place over the weekend. As soon as Monday shows it’s round and sunny face it’s done, fingers down. No more editing, no more reworking, just throw whatever I have at that point on to the website. Because of this rule, and because I am a strict task master, one who refuses to bend to my own internal begging, I was concerned that the weekend writing might be somewhat sub par. Mostly, they haven’t been. In fact the latest one, Once Hidden, Three Times Found, is a piece of writing I’m really happy with, and up there as one of my favourites. The most exciting part about that story though was that I had no idea where it was going as I was writing it.

Usually, I plot out my story at least a little, even if it’s simply writing down whatever initially spawned the idea and adding a few stray thoughts about where it might go. But, because of my whip cracking rules, I didn’t have time for that, I didn’t even really have an initial burst of inspiration. What I did have was a writing prompt, given by another writing advice blog, where I was given a title and a first line, and then I just wrote from there, the story seemingly coming from nowhere.

It was kind of amazing. Stephen King has talked about how he often has no idea where his stories are going, but rather describes it as though he’s an archaeologist who’s simply exposing a story that’s already there. That’s what this one felt like.

I wrote the first half over two plane trips last weekend, travelling in between Melbourne and Adelaide, a short fifty minute flight, meaning my usual truncated time was even shorter still. I didn’t have time to overthink it, I just wrote one scene, briefly considered what could happen next, and then immediately wrote it; still with no plan about where the story was leading.

I then wrote the second half in the weekend just past. I knew I had hit my midpoint at the end of last weekend and still had no idea about how the second half would conclude, but all week I was excited to find out, because, weirdly, I felt like as much reader as writer, confident the story did have an ending, I would just have to wait to see what it was. Saturday rolled around but I had to finish editing an audio book version of one of my short stories (details of which to be revealed in a future blog), and so I had one day to find the story’s second half.

I began writing and sure enough, there it was, waiting for me, coming out one line at a time. By the time I was done I felt elated and wild. The ending came together, plucked from the corners of my mind and woven together in a way that felt natural and right.

Here’s the thing though, I’m not a story archaeologist. The story wasn’t waiting to be discovered. It wasn’t hanging in space, complete and perfect, simply needing a vessel to reveal itself. That’s not how it works. What actually happened was all the practice and work and study from the last few years came together in a way that meant I didn’t have to think about the story elements as I wrote them. Which, to me, is even more amazing. It means all this works.

When I started my screenwriting degree and was learning about all the various writing tools and structure guidelines and character design and dialogue rules and etc. etc. etc. it seemed like a lot to take in, a lot of pieces to crowd your head as you wrote, a lot of filters to look at your writing through. Basically, it seemed impossible. My lectures told me though, that given enough time all that knowledge would become second nature, that if used it enough it would become innate and feature in my writing without me having to think about it. I’m starting to see that they were right.

Basically, writing is like any other skill, you need to practice it. You need to do it over and over until you’re sick of doing it, and then find some way to keep doing it anyway. It’ll always take work, but the more you work the better you get, and that’s what I’m most excited about; getting better.

Talk soon

Damian

September 8, 2017

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For all the mixed opinions about John Mayer, and his tabloid worthy antics, I think the guy’s capable of some great music. Stop This Train, is the best example of that. It details in heart wrenching relatability the feeling that life is moving too fast, and the untenable desire to slow it down. It’s also today’s blog song.

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Current chain of writing days: 40

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A couple of weekends ago the Lady Holly and I had what we call a ‘Hdoliday.’ Apart from combining the first letter of our names with the word holiday, it’s also a weekend we put aside to purposely be antisocial. Well, we still want to be social, but just with each other.

With Holly’s work as a highschool teacher frequently leaking out into her weekends and after hours, and with me using outer work hours for writing, podcasting, and various other networking activities, not to mention actually hanging out with all the great people in our lives, it can sometimes feel like we don’t have a lot of time to just have a lazy day at home. A day where we’re free to do anything, or nothing. Our hdolidays are the answer to that.

We’ve had three so far; two involving a lot of lounging around like greek rulers, and, the most recent one, where we not only left the house, but did so multiple times. The cause for this was that I had been given a very generous red balloon voucher from a group of my friends for my thirtieth birthday in November last year. Not being much of an adrenaline junkie (the complete opposite) I quickly ruled out a lot of red balloon’s more standard options. Luckily, there are plenty of other offers on the site, including weekends away. Originally, that is what we had planned on doing, but none of the trips really fit what we were looking for, and so we decided to change tactics. We would instead treat ourselves to a number of activities within our own city, Melbourne, and have a weekend away by not going anywhere.

We brought three vouchers; two food based, and one an activity. The food ones were a buffet breakfast at the Hotel Windsor (Saturday Morning), and teppanyaki at a restaurant on Southbank (Sunday lunch). Both were great in different ways but it was the activity that stood out from the weekend. An hour in a flotation tank.

I’ll be honest, most of my interest in this activity came from a Simpsons episode, where Homer and Lisa each give it a go, to varying results. I had also heard that you could sometimes have hallucinations while in the tank, and read a story about someone who got a pretty serious ear infection after going to a dodgy clinic in LA, and that was my sum knowledge about what to expect. Going in, I was mostly excited by my ignorance. I didn’t know what was going to happen but I was keen to find out. I figured it would be weird, maybe boring, and at the very least no different from a really long bath.

For those who don’t know, a floatation tank is basically a large capsule filled with incredibly salty water in order to ensure you float. Its main goal, and the thing that makes it so trippy, is sensory deprivation; trying to cut you off from your senses as much as possible. The walls are thick to cut out sound, the lights get turned off, and the floatation means that mostly all you can feel is a slight awareness of water. However, the temperature of the water, is kept the same as the room, which is aimed to be the same as the average body temperature, so even then it can be hard to know where the water, your body, and the surrounding air start and finish. By cutting yourself off from all your senses you’re basically left to do, as Holly called it, forced meditation. This is why some people hallucinate. They’re left with so little input that their minds go into vivid daydreaming, that they’re so focused on that it seems real.

I didn’t hallucinate, and I didn’t get an ear infection. What I did do was relax.

I was left alone in the room, showered, and then quickly stepped into the tank, closing the lid behind me. At first I was giddy. The high salt content means that you have no option but to float, and the extreme buoyancy, not to mention the fact that I was closed up in a big white pod half filled with water, was weird and amusing. Lights were on and music was playing, both of which would slowly fade away after ten minutes.

I closed my eyes and lay back.

First there were the stray thoughts, the normal ones your brain thinks on when you first lie down, mostly comprised of analysing what I was experiencing, or more correctly, wasn’t. I swayed my body and felt it move with barely any resistance. I thought about how I could be in space right then, with nothing but infinity stretching out around me in every direction. Then the music drifted away and I dared to open my eyes. There was no difference. With the lights now off I was in the pitchest of blacks, the kind where I couldn’t even see my hand in front of my face. I giggled, the idea of me lost in space seeming even more real.

My mind turned from immediate events, to past ones and future concerns, and then to somewhere beyond them. I wouldn’t say I ever stopped thinking completely, there was no clearing of the mind, but the thoughts were small and quiet, disappearing as soon as they arrived, and leaving no trace or memory of what they were even about.

Then I scratched my forehead and three salty drops of water fell into my eyes. I tried really hard not to rub at them, knowing it would make it worse, then tried to ignore them, then when that didn’t work finally sat up and turned on the light. Inside each pod is a button to turn on a low light, and a squirt bottle of clean water for just this occasion. I washed my eyes out, turned the lights off, and lay back down.

It seemed only a handful of minutes later that I became aware of the music slowly starting again. Somehow an hour had passed. I sat up within the tank and listened to the music, still not thinking much of anything. My body was relaxed, and comfortable, and my mind was too. Eventually, I opened the tank and stepped out. I showered again to get all the salt off and made my way back out into a world that for a short while had seemed not to exist.

As you can probably tell, I enjoyed the experience for the most part. It felt like I had had a big long sleep, and as meditation goes is easily the most I’ve ever been able to achieve. There was also something about being so alone, even for a short while. That for that short time all I really had to worry about was myself, and even then that mostly comprised of keeping salt out of my eyes.

Holly had a similar experience, and a similar dilation of time, although that was mostly due to the fact that she fell asleep.

I love that woman.

Talk soon

Damian

August 28, 2017

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Today’s music is from Englishman Newton Faulkner, mostly because I relistened to his album Write it On Your Skin then other day and remembered how good it was. This is the title track.

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Current chain of writing days: 29

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I mentioned in the last post the in order to start getting that project completion high more often (and share more of my writing) I would write a new piece of flash fiction every weekend. I then immediately failed in this task.

Admittedly, that first weekend, I did a tonne of writing, it just wasn’t towards any flash fiction. Instead it was towards the horror novella I’ve been working on, the one that will be combined with three others (written by podcasting pals) and then printed in an anthology known as The Seasons of Fear. The good news is that it’s finished! Other good news is that early reader, The Lady Holly, has said she’s enjoying it. Admittedly, she may be biased due to the whole loving me thing but still, it makes me happy.

This one took quite a bit out of me – a lot of forcing words out, a lot of doubting, a lot of rewriting – but it feels like another satisfying step towards me becoming a better writer, which is more than enough reason to make it a positive experience, let alone the potential to share it with readers. I will be sure to pass on further details once they’ve been confirmed.

But, back to the flash fiction. So, first weekend, fail. Second weekend (the one just passed), success! I wrote a 900 word sci fi story, that came out quite well if not easily, and most importantly definitely gave me that satisfaction that comes from have a completed piece of work; even a very short one. The plan is to share it on here tomorrow, after rejigging the website a bit to figure out the format I’ll share them in, and then share a new one every Monday indefinitely.

I’m already looking forward to writing the next one, now I just need to figure out what it’s going to be about.

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Something cool also happened on twitter this week.

I posted a tweet, a joke, that turned into a mythical piece of folk lore:
twit

Then something amazing happened.

Something that optimizes the coolness that can come from making connections on the internet.

Something that made me giddier than the giddiest schoolgirl.

The tweet got itself some fan art…

Crab King
I love it! Full thanks and credit to Lena for its creation.

I’m now thinking to write a radioplay about the world of the Crab King, long may he slumber.

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Finally, I saw this short video this week that I thought was quite nice, not to mention good advice. Check it out.

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That’s it for the blog this week, flash fiction coming tomorrow.

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Remember, it is better to burn with embarrassment than to drown in doubt.

Talk soon

Damian

August 17, 2017

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So, apparently The Head and the Heart released a new album almost a year ago without me noticing. Disgusting. The album in question is called Signs of Life and from the first track, All we Ever Knew, onwards, it’s a whole lot of fun.

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Current chain of writing days: 18

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I spoke via computer, satellites, fiber optic cables, and probably a whole bunch of other tech I don’t understand, to Brother Jonathan last night. Well, night for me, as I sat in my house in Melbourne surrounded by winter winds, morning for him, from his apartment in London surrounded by summer sun.

Whenever we chat, apart from spending a solid amount of time discussing how handsome the other is (we’re twins) and catching up on each others life, our conversation inevitably turns to writing.

Reading, and now writing, has always been one of the (many) bonds between us (concurrent handsomeness being another) and so it’s always beneficial to hear how he is going with his writing while also discussing where I’m at with mine. During this he mentioned that he hadn’t read anything new from me for a while, which is true.

Apart from these blogs, most of my writing effort has been going towards a single project, my novella for the horror anthology I’m writing with my podcasting pals. This is good, as it’s the only real thing I’m working on that has a deadline, and I’m enjoying working in longer form as it’s giving me more confidence that I can pull of a novel sooner than later.

The only downside is that I don’t get that sense of accomplishment that comes with finishing a project. There’s obviously the enjoyment of writing itself – the creativity, the challenge, the breakthroughs etc. etc. – but it’s having the thing done, a concrete, shareable, piece of work, that’s whole and complete, that brings the ultimate satisfaction. Also, sometimes writing sucks, it’s hard and requires a lot of mental effort, so finishing something gives a reward for all that suckiness, and while I assume the greater the body of work the greater the satisfaction at the end of it, I still want little wins along the way.

So, I have a plan; I like plans. Once a week I’ll write a piece of flash fiction.

I’m thinking three thousand words or less, depending on what comes out, and which can be spread over a fortnight if it’s particularly wordy. Not only will this provide me with the sense of completion I currently crave, but smashing out a story once a week or so will force me to not overthink while I write and just increase my overall portfolio. Best of all though it means I’ll have something to share and showcase immediately.

I’ve been wanting to add some pieces of writing to this website for a while (as I’m aware that for a guy who blogs about writing I have no actual examples of my work for any who are interested), but have held off as technically anything I put on here counts as ‘published’ and therefore is no longer able to be submitted to magazines and competitions. These will be just for fun and therefore immediately shareable.

I’m thinking Saturday will be flash fiction day, as I still definitely want to dedicate my non-working Fridays to whatever major piece of writing I’m working on, and despite, or possibly because of, their abundance of free time, weekends are usually where I get my least amount of writing done. Having something new with minimal pressure on it for me to work on every weekend should function to reverse this fact – hopefully. Who knows. Weekends are when drunk Damian shows up and there’s no predicting what that guy might do.

Finally, ideas for these flash fictions will come from the big backlog of ideas I currently have catalogued in a google doc appropriately titled ‘ideas’, some of which I’ve been desperate to explore, or from the plethora of writing prompts that exist out there on the world wide web (which I might write about for my next blog as this one feels like it’s getting long enough already).

I’m looking forward to it, hopefully you are too.

Talk soon

Damian

August 10, 2017

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Music today once again comes from Passenger. It’s his cover of Bill Wither’s Ain’t No Sunshine, which you should listen to for the piano and guitar solo’s alone.

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Current chain of writing days: 11

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We’re all living in a bubble. My bubble, I think, mostly consists of work, writing, worry about that writing (not good enough, not writing enough, etc), social responsibilities, trying not to eat junk food then injudiciously eating junk food, financial concerns, the Lady Holly, and all rounded off by my weekly routine (with a smidge of thought of if I should change my weekly routine). Basically, the space my brain spends most of it’s day in, cycling through these issues time and time again.

But here’s the thing, it only takes a modicum of empathy to pop that bubble. Read one article about someone else’s life, see one news feed about the struggle of a refugee, hear one story from a friend about an issue they or someone they know is facing, and suddenly I’m not in my bubble anymore. It’s a good thing for me to get a break from my bubble once in awhile. While my bubble provides the boundaries for what I exert my daily energies towards, it also narrows my field of vision. It makes my problems seem like the only problems, which, without a wider perspective, also makes them seem larger than they are. And they’re not that large, not really.

With my bubble popped I’m more aware of what’s going on around me, more appreciative of what I have, more patient with others, and more willing to experience new things. It will grow back, it needs to, it provides the necessary structure for me to continue moving forward with my life, but it’s also good for me to remember that it’s there, and that if I’m ever feeling overwhelmed, or victimised, or that I don’t have enough, that I can purposely pop that bubble and see the greater picture, and realise just how lucky I am.

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The article that popped my bubble today was this comic about a journalist who visited Doctors Without Borders camps in Yemen.

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In writing related news I watched this awesome video essay yesterday about how Christopher Nolan uses story structure so well. It focuses on Batman Begins, and shows how by with four central characters, all with opposing views around a central theme, it can provide the outline for the conflict in each act. Really interesting, and just made me appreciate how well Nolan’s movie are made.

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While I’m sharing things, I read this great blog piece from one of my favourite writers, Peter Clines, a while ago with some simple advice about how to make some really easy edits on your writing. 

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Final share, this video below. It’s been around for a little while now but whenever it pops up I always watch it because I think it’s beautiful and inspiring in it’s unnecessary but undoubtedly stunning design.

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Remember, we’re all just making it up as we go along.

Talk soon

Damian

August 3, 2017

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I like Stu Larsen for a number of reasons. The first is his music, which is acoustic and folky, and ticks all kinds of boxes for me, the second is his backstory. Before becoming a professional musician Stu worked for heritage building society, spending 9 to 5 in a shirt and tie, clean shaven with a neat haircut. Then something happened, possibly his friendship with another musical hero, Passenger, and Stu left it all behind to hit the road and play his songs to whoever would listen. He became a literal vagabond (also the title of his first album), traveled the word on a dime, grew his hair and beard out, and wrote some fine music. The courage of this act is one I think about often, choosing to explore both the world and his art at the expense of his security; and I consider if I will ever choose the same path.

This song comes from his new album, Resolute, and is entitled Going Back to Bowenville; an ode to revisiting his hometown after a lengthy absence.

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Current chain of writing days: 4

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Our brains love connecting dots. Finding patterns. In fact, we’re incredibly good at it, mostly without thinking. The reason, arguably, is that it helps us survive. Being able to spot generalisations, that most of the time a leads to b leads to c, means we’re able to predict occurrences before they happen. Of course, this can have a negative effect. Where the pattern we create is false, or the dots connect to look like a rabbit when it is in fact a duck. Any kind of bigotry could be (partially) blamed on this effect, as could the mistaken belief that people think they can text and drive just because they’ve managed to do it before. Basically, lots of dickish moves could be back grounded by seeing a pattern that doesn’t exist.

However, when a pattern does prove to be correct it can be a joy inducing discovery. This is definitely true when a piece of writing comes together. For anyone who’s ever read a screenwriting book, or had structure preached to them, they’ll know how much pattern recognition resides in writing. While I am a fan of using structure with my writing it is by no means a must, it’s simply one pattern that’s been recognised, and no doubt there are more. The reason I’m a fan though is because there is something in the oldest part of my lizard brain that enjoys the pattern. Something about the structure feels right. It’s the same feeling that comes from watching a movie that’s well rounded, where every thread gets tied up. We’re recognising a pattern, and in story that can be immensely satisfying.

As a writer I believe this feeling is doubled, if not more so, when a story comes together. When you start to approach the finish line it can begin to feel like the story is writing itself, it’s amazing. Resolutions start to line up perfectly with throw away lines you wrote earlier, never planning for them to be more than a detail, but now they’re the perfect call back to you evolving ending. It’s moments like this that feel like you’re discovering a story rather than writing it, but what you’re really doing is recognising a pattern and exploiting it. The pattern in question is an ink blot. It’s an image on one side of a page being mirrored on the other. Knowing this however, doesn’t mean it’s easy to exploit, nor that you should even force yourself to try and do so consciously. My general feeling is that we’re going to write in patterns whether we want to or not. We can’t help it. Our brains love connecting dots.

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The above text was a thought that wouldn’t leave me alone last night as I tried to sleep, so I thought I would try and get it out today; one) to see if it was a valid thought, and two) so I could have a more restful sleep tonight. It came about due to the novella I’m currently writing. As mentioned in previous posts I’ve had some issues getting through the meat of this story, but just this week I seemed to have turned a corner (literally, as I’ve managed to stumble past the midpoint).

With this corner turning has come the above mentioned effect of an almost unseen force setting up pieces in the first half of the story that I can now exploit in the second half of the story; which I really think is just my brain going, ‘Hey, if we make this thing join with that thing it’ll make a pretty pattern.’ Thanks, brain. Whatever it is I’m glad for it because it makes the second half of the story a lot easier to write, and this week alone I’ve managed to average over a thousand words a day.

The novella is far from complete. Apart from the roughly twelve thousand more words I need to write it’s also very much a first draft, one that will benefit greatly from a few outside forces looking at it and pointing out all it’s faults (in a nice way). The second draft will likely be as much work as the first, but hopefully come October (when we’re planning to publish this puppy) it’ll be in good shape, with an underlying pattern that’ll make all our ancient lizard brains smile.

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Remember, you have the power to turn someone’s day around simply by doing a silly walk.

Talk soon

Damian