Monthly Archives: October 2014

#SUNDAYPIX 2nd November 2014

B04wMjeIYAA0LHyAyup. How are you diddling? Your theme for Sunday 2nd November, inspired the sexual magnetism of Twitter’s own @FurnessGirl, is:

 

Fridge Magnets

 

DSCF4116Either show us your favourite, or maybe it’s a series. Hell, show us your whole fridge door crawling with the things. Post your pics to Twitter on Sunday, including the hashtag #SUNDAYPIXmagnets in your tweet. As ever, photographs must be yours (or your family’s or your secret lover’s) – nowt just nicked off the internet. Yes, you can post an old pic you’ve previously taken, or even one from your family history. Follow the hashtag (click on it in any tweet or add a column to your app) on Sunday to see what others have made of the theme. You are encouraged to comment on other Sundaypickers’ tweets.

Advertisements

Plot resolution a la Alex Brightsmith

I’ve had a lot of trouble over the last few days with the plot of The Raven’s Wing. I suppose it’s a symptom of my penchant for elaborate plotting structures (see ‘Fog’), but this stumbling block was a right thorny bastard. I shall explain, avoiding spoilers.

There’s this Thing, see? And the plot of The Raven’s Wing required this Thing to do a thing, only the Thing is miles away from the thing that it needs to do at the time the thing needs doing. Thinking hard with my mighty author brain failed for days to offer up a solution.

Oh certainly, I could devise a clunky deus ex machina to transport the Thing to the thing, but then I’d have to construct a second tower of implausibility to return the Thing to its rightful place and BANG the elegance is gone.

I briefly considered cutting the Thing in two, and having Thing One do the thing, while Thing Two continued on its merry way along the original plotline, but then the mere existence of Thing One would completely undermine the structure of the whole book.

“Stop fretting about it, bumface,” said Alex (I clumsily paraphrase her delicate sentence structure here). “Hie thee to thy noisome nest and forget it. The solution often rises unbidden into the dreamlike mind.”

I was doubtful. Normally my dreamlike mind features only such subjects as clouds, floods and bottoms. However, not for the first time, the head of the nail felt the forceful blow of Alex’s perspicacity. As she had foretold, the very next morning, while I was still half asleep and thinking about naked ladies, a cartoon light bulb pinged into existence above my head. Blimey. What if the thing didn’t happen at all? I could just leave the Thing where it was to carry on performing its Thingly duties.

Alex BrightsmithOh, but then if the thing that I had thought should happen did not happen, well, then what? Then… WHOA. Sweet sexy Jesus on a chocolate bike, that’s good. Having the thing not happen actually gives birth to a far bigger and much more emotionally engaging second half. It could shake you by the throat.

So thanks, Alex – you’ve help lift The Raven’s Wing out of Quite Good and into Bloody Nora That’s a Bit Brilliant. Now I just have to make the writing as good as the plot.

#SUNDAYPIX 26th October 2014

A man browsing for books in Cincinnati's cavernous old main library. The library was demolished in 1955Ayup. Hope you’re all both tickety and boo, and that all your important crevices are nice and clean. Your theme for Sunday 26th October is

Books

Hardbacks, paperbacks, eReaders – take a photo of many books or just one, plainly of perhaps from an unusual angle. Post your pics to Twitter on Sunday, including the hashtag #SUNDAYPIXbooks in your tweet. Any photograph that includes one of MY books will win a voucher for a free hour of sweet sweet Wombat love. As ever, photographs must be yours (or your family’s or your secret lover’s) – nowt just nicked off the internet. Yes, you can post an old pic you’ve previously taken, or even one from your family history. Follow the hashtag (click on it in any tweet or add a column to your app) on Sunday to see what others have made of the theme. You are encouraged to comment on other Sundaypickers’ tweets.

Mr. Paul Groom versus A Crab

b-78Jf3A_400x400Here’s a diddy blog post intended simply to show Mr. Paul Groom how the poll widget I use works. Of course, I’m on wordpress.com, being a cheapskate, so I’m not sure whether it’s available on wordpress.org. Anyway, please vote using the poll on the right as to which of the creatures in the photo would win in a fight – @MrPaulGroom or the crab.

Writing without writing

I spent three or four hours today on The Raven’s Wing without writing a word. First there was the actual plotting – ensuring the flow of the whole piece actually works in terms of time and location. I found a couple of holes there that needed plugging. Then there’s consistency -making sure all the characters behave truly to their nature. Motivation – checking that every character, even the minor ones, have a reason for doing the things they do. Timeflow – ensuring that characters travelling different paths all pass through the same amount of time as each other before meeting up again. I even tracked a few meaningful objects through the story outline to make sure they travel through time and space correctly, and that it all holds together. Hurray for Scrivener, which makes all of this easy.

Sometimes writing doesn’t involve writing, if you see what I mean.

Image1

#Twanta14 Twantadors

nicolax-twantabiscuit-excellentHo de ho, campers. It’s getting near time I started assigning Twantees to people. If you’re in the list below and haven’t already, please DM your address to @twanta2014 (or tell him if it’s the same as last year, if you prefer).

It’d also be a fine opportunity to inform us of any special requirements you might have, such as:

  • Folk to avoid
  • Countries you’d rather post to
  • Whether you have allergies

If you want to take part but aren’t on the list below, there’s still time. If you have no idea what #TWANTA is, this post will spurt all the knowledge you need into your head.

Twantadors confirmed for #TWANTA14

@2you2me2you @alexbrightsmith @alliterative @ananizapta
@AvenSarah @azzathepirate @basdriver @bexagin
@bilbobaggins2k @ByWordAndStich @captain_doodle @Cara_Erin
@cobain_10 @davidtims @doodledawne @doodledawne’s Em
@dbrereton @dutch_bitch @ellieexhibition @ericafairs
@FannyIngAbout @fisher1946 @gingerfig @greythorne
@Grumpy_Mel @Hols1983 @Hugeshark @IainLJ
@jamerz3294 @jayalay @JudgeTread @julieanon
@kirstyhalton @KJCollard @landladycheryl @lardychap
@LEJamez @lilianlouvaine @LizzyWelshCake @LouiseHector
@LucieMR @luggermatt @monbling @MrPeterWood
@MrsActive @MrsAshborosCat @NicolaCubes @nyncompoop
@och23 @Owlbird @pariahsickkid @phantom_blonde
@poorlittlenell @pricklyemu @rachaelkanute @Rachamuffin
@sarahhanner @SarahTregear @SarahV1982 @secretstef
@spiffykates @starlitwolf @sundayhandbag @superblouse
@teddy_red @TheFlossieTP @theweeyin15 @Tsaksonakis
@underbundle @waysidehealer @wombat37 @xx_ItsOnlyMe_xx
       

#SUNDAYPIXbikes

DSCF3956Ayup. I almost gave you ‘Hats’ there for a moment, but no. That @starlitwolf saved my arse ( or ass, as she would call it – she talks about it all the time, obviously) by reminding me that we’d had that theme very recently. No your memory is bobbins. Anyway, the theme for Sunday 19th October is

 

Bikes

 

DSCF4012

Pushbikes, scooters, motorcycles, trikes – all are game for your trusty roving camera. Post your pics to Twitter on Sunday, including the hashtag #SUNDAYPIXbikes in your tweet. I did briefly consider awarding actual points for people’s photographs, and maybe building up a league table, but then I couldn’t be arsed, and so the usual DSCF4018Wombat approbation and RTs will be awarded for special shows of imagination and style. Photographs must be yours (or your family’s or your secret lover’s) – nowt just nicked off the internet. Yes, you can post an old pic you’ve previously taken, or even one from your family history. Follow the hashtag (click on it in any tweet or add a column to your app) on Sunday to see what others have made of the theme. You are encouraged to comment on other Sundaypickers’ tweets.

An understanding

100_2529The orang-utan may have been male, I suppose, but let’s assume not. When I pushed Mombat’s wheelchair up onto the quiet, deserted balcony it was late, and most of the zoo’s visitors had already left. We were the only people in the area, and the enclosure looked empty of life.

I almost missed her, curled into a dark corner, one eye peering out of a mound of sacking. She lowered her cloth, perhaps intrigued by our movement, and observed us curiously. I stopped and, I know not why, lifted both arms over my head, palms towards her. She stood, and swung the five metres or so over to the glass where we stood. We looked into each other’s eyes, hers sad yet curious, mine, I hoped, sympathetic and reassuring. A flicker of understanding passed between us. I laid my hand against the glass, a gesture of friendship. She placed her palm against mine, separated only by the thin layer of silicate. She pressed her lips to the barrier between us, and I kissed her.

The moment was shattered by a group of young rowdies entering the balcony. She returned to her sacking, while I pushed Mombat back out into the sunlight. Behind us we could hear the raucous laughter of the youths, who commenced to make loud monkey noises. The moment of understanding was over.

#SUNDAYPIXGlass

That’s it, really. Your theme for Sunday 12th October 2014 is:

DSCF3590Glass

Go to it.

*stupidly fast radio advert voice*

as usual post your pics to Twitter on Sunday including the hashtag #SUNDAYPIXGLASS in your tweet meaningless points will be awarded for shows of imagination and style photographs must be yours or your family’s or your mates nowt just nicked off the internet it can be an old pic you’ve previously taken follow the hashtag (click on it in any tweet or add a column to your app) on Sunday to see what others have made of the theme sarcastic comments are encouraged Ts and Cs apply.

Other hashtags are available.

#SUNDAYPIXAUTUMN, Sunday 5th October

Autumn LightHello dears. Bit of a topical theme for you this week:

Autumn

Yes, autumn. ‘Fall’ for you lot over there *points*. Initi8al thoughts – autumn leaf colours, mist, Hallowe’en, fireworks… I’m sure your imagination will provide some wonderful photographs. As usual, post your pics to Twitter on Sunday, including the hashtag #SUNDAYPIXAUTUMN in your tweet.

Meaningless points will be awarded for shows of imagination and style. The photograph you post must be yours or your family’s or your mates – nowt just nicked off the internet, you get the idea. It can be an old pic you’ve previously taken.

Follow the hashtag (click on it in any tweet, or add a column to your app) on Sunday to see what others have made of the theme. Sarcastic comments are encouraged Winking smile

%d bloggers like this: