An Ode to My AeroPress

This isn’t an ode to my AeroPress. I wanted to write one. But I don’t know how to write an ode. So I won’t.

What I’ll say is this: I wish I’d bought an AeroPress (I didn’t actually buy one, it was a gift from my mother in law) earlier.

I had a French press before and the coffee I made in it was pretty good. So good, in fact, that I am not all that keen on buying coffee in coffee shops anymore (if I do, I tend to buy mochas because that’s different from what I make at home; I use a Bonne Maman jam jar to froth my milk – pour the amount of (warmed is better but not essential) milk you want in, close lid firmly and shake until frothy – for a latte that beats Costa, Starbuck etc.).

The thing I missed about cafés, though, was the smell. Even as a child I loved the smell of freshly ground and brewed coffee.

Thanks to the AeroPress, my morning coffee doesn’t only taste even better than the French press version. No, my place smells like a coffee shop afterwards.

I’m still thinking about my ode. I may get round to writing it in November when I’m stuck with my NaNo novel …

Rebel Tales (1): The WIP

Here’s the thing. I am a NaNo Rebel this year. I am going to write a novel, and I’m going to write at least 50k, but I am not starting from scratch. This is part one of my Rebel Tales.

I have been working on my WIP since August. There were a couple of reasons for this: I wanted to submit to the mslexia novel competition (deadline was in September) and I’m finally taking the novel module for my creative writing degree. I wanted to get started well before I have to submit the first excerpt for workshopping.

Good thing I did start early because it turns out this story is a bit slippery. The idea kept changing on me, and it took me a while to find the best way to tell it. As a result, I have an impressive collection of now redundant scenes for the beginning. I think I have three versions of the beginning in total . I finally found the right way into the story last week.

Still, it’s one step forward two steps back. I have two weeks to come to grips with the story.

Wish me luck.

End of Radio Silence

Oh dear. Almost four years since I’ve posted here.

I have to admit that I’ve been playing around with other blogs. I started Prompts to Spark Your Writing in June 2012 as an experiment and it’s been ticking along ever since. I’m not sure I have many readers, but that isn’t why I’ve kept going. I find posting a batch of writing prompts is quite useful when I find it difficult to get going.

Almost any writing prompt can be used to set off the imagination. If I’m working on something specific, I use a prompt and write about it in the voice of the character I’m writing. If there’s no WiP, I start off by writing down the first impressions that come to mind – more often than not, I end up with a story. I’ve written a lot of flash fiction which wouldn’t exist without a random prompt.

And that’s how I’m preparing for NaNoWriMo 2013, as well. I have my characters and a few ideas for the plot. I’m using writing prompts and write about them from the perspective of one of the characters. This often leads to revelations about either the character or the plot and sometimes both.

I don’t put pressure on myself. I want to keep these exercises light and fun. I don’t need a new revelation every time I write one of those little stories. Writing in the world of my story alone is enough to make me more prepared for the November madness.

Okay, I promise that it won’t be another four years until my next post.

NaBloPoMo 2009

I didn’t enter this blog on the NaBloPoMo November blogroll, but I’ve kind of been in the running unofficially. It’s easy to write something every day in November, because if all else fails I’ll still blog about my wordcount and how easy it was to write those words.

I’m considering the challenge for December, though. On the one hand, it would be good to get a blogging routine up and running again. On the other, though, I know that December will be a tricky month for daily blogging. I’ll be travelling home for Christmas, and there everybody and the world will want to see me because I live abroad, and they – the dogs in particular – will not be impressed if I disappear in the middle of brunch, lunch or dinner because I need to write a new blog post. So I’m not sure what to do. Maybe I’ll be an unofficial participant again – at least for the first 21 days of the month.

First Draft Reward

I’ve finished NaNoWriMo, wrote another first draft that needs editing (badly). Before I get on with finishing this year’s and last year’s story (well, other way around, actually), I want to read a book.

While I write, I’m not allowed to read unless it’s genre research. The book I’ve really wanted to read for two months now is Nova Ren Suma‘s Dani Noir. I’ll got to Daunt Books tomorrow and order it.

Breaking a habit

I remember why I started this blog. This was supposed to be a place where I chronicled my progress as a writer and where I shared things I learnt along the way with other writers.

But I keep forgetting this, and recently – over the last two years or so – I’ve only remembered when NaNoWriMo came around. It’s time I break this habit. It’s time I take this blog seriously again.