Never before have I been such a joiner! I’m in a writers group, a law of attraction group and this month I have been having a bit of fun preparing for Nanowrimo in November by taking part in a hashtag ‘challenge’ on Instagram.  Each day we post an image or quote to get us in the mood for the onslaught that is NanowrimoIMG_5213.jpg

It’s the second time I have participated in Nanowrimo. I did #campnanowrimo in April this year, smashing out 40K words in a Gatsby-inspired, dystopian future novel with a couple of gruesome murders and a lot of Artificial Intelligence. Not my usual Paris-themed subject matter.

This November I’m going to write… something… I’m not 100% sure yet. I am hoping Days 16 to 30 (see image above) will give me a clearer idea of which story I am going to run with. Perhaps I’ll continue with the Novellas and short stories in the Paris in a Day format that I’ve been working on? I’ve got a couple of ideas; one involving a typewriter in an old hotel, and one involving a lab full of monkeys with a flesh-eating virus and a doctor who may or may not want to get back at her ex-husband for leaving her…

One thing I have learned over the past 12 months is that I am certainly NOT a planner. I am an unapologetic PANTSTER! (i.e. writing by the seat of my pants being the preferred modus operandi!)

When I was painting, you couldn’t have paid me to enter an art competition and I rarely posted images of the work I created. I certainly didn’t join painting groups after a brush with the horrible old biddies at the local art society. (They are all, in fact, dead now, so I guess you could say I had the last laugh…) Too far?

I did a couple of group shows but because I was making my living from painting twee, abstract shit, I hated the idea of being judged for the work I actually wanted to paint.

I feel it’s just some sort of game if it’s just abstract. ~ Jeffrey Smart

I agree wholeheartedly, Jeff! ( The featured image is Smart’s brilliant The Traveller, the favourite painting of my 16-year-old self.)

img_5022As a painter, I struggled with self-defeating behaviour and low self-esteem, but I don’t seem to have the problem when it comes to my writing. Maybe my writing is better than my artwork? Maybe I’ve just gotten over the fear of being shit after years of doing commissions for interior designers who didn’t want a great piece of art, just some colour on the walls to match the drapes. I am certainly not knocking that approach to art; it paid my bills for years, it’s just not how I want to ‘art’ now.

If you want to check out the Instawrimo pics go to my Instagram @writerpainter

instawrimo images on insta.PNG

Fucking up is indeed a beautiful thing because it means you’ve got some skin in the game.