The next couple of months will be very busy for me with NaNoWriMo and then Christmas following along not far behind.
To NaNo first…I have already posted up the synopsis for the book. In a break with my usual style I’ve decided to try and write a book for teens. It will be about a girl called Sage who may (or may not!) be the Last of the Ancients, the race that is the fount of all magic on earth. I’m really looking forward to writing it. Although I have a general outline in my head, writing is always an adventure for me as the story wanders around on its own as it’s being written. I was asked by a friend of a friend if her daughter could feature in one of my books, so there will also be a character called Saffron. It makes me happy to do nice things like that for people.
I’m also looking forward to spending some quality time with my writing buddies. It’s one of the things that never fails to amaze me, even though I’ve been publishing for almost 6 months now, when my friends come to me and say that I’ve inspired them to go ahead with their own novels. At least 5 of my friends have either published or made a serious effort to complete their own works and it’s pretty humbling to have been the last push that tumbled them over the edge into their dreams. I hope, as a new author, that we’ll all be able to take this journey together. As a result, we’ve all been in closer contact lately which has been great, discussing writing techniques and cover art and marketing. People that I haven’t spoken to for years…it’s warming at a time of year when the snow is falling and family and friends are so important.
I’ve also been comunicating a lot more with my local novel writing club in Inverness. I’ve only managed to get to 2 meetings so haven’t met everyone yet, but we email frequently. I’ve managed to persuade several of them to sign up for NaNoWriMo with me and that’s going to be a LOT of fun. If any of you reading this are in the Inverness area, please get in touch and you can come to one of our writealongs. We’ll be meeting at Eden Court on some evenings in the week and Leakies in Church Street have kindly offered the use of their cafe at 3pm on Saturdays. I’ll be attending as many as I can. We’ve also organised for four of us to go on a writing retreat for a last, late push in the last weekend of November to Moniack Mhor. I’m ridiculously excited by this. I’ve never been on a writing retreat before so I’m hoping it’ll be a lot of fun!
Once all the Nano madness is over, I’ll be turning my thoughts towards Christmas. It won’t surprise you to know that I make most of my presents and I’ve spent the last few months looking for nice ideas:
My stepdad is a soap fanatic. I swear he goes through a bar every couple of weeks. As a result, Christmas is something of a soap fest for him – he gets at least twenty bars to last him the year from specialist soap shops all over the UK. He and my mum have this cute little basket in their bathroom that’s chock full of weird and wonderful soaps. With the easy availability of a wide range of melt and pour soap bases, I decided this year that I would try my hand at making some, perhaps create him his own unique fragrance. I have also purchased a large jar of coconut oil for making sugar scrubs so I think a few people will be getting homemade cosmetics hampers, perhaps even with hand-knitted face cloths.
For the kids, I saw this recipe on Facebook and think it sounds like a lovely idea as an additional little present:
I’ve got most of the children in my life little books or items of clothing already, but this adds the perfect finishing touch, a little splash of love, time and effort.
For the adults, I thought these were pretty cute:
Simple to make but very effective and adding that little handmade touch to a gift. I was thinking I could stamp them with individual names and ‘Christmas 2012’, doubling up as a parcel tag and keepsake decoration from this christmas.
Finally, I’ll be attempting to knit/crochet dishcloths. My sister in law recently asked if I would make her some. She comes from a traditional Welsh family and grew up with her nana making dishcloths for them all. Sadly her nana died recently and no-one else in her family has the inclination or time to make them. I said I would try. It’s not the strongest of my crafting skills, but nothing ventured, nothing gained.
Of course there will be the odd few pieces of jewellery made here and there too, depending on time and circumstances. All in all, a busy couple of months!!