Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Leaving Facebook

My computer used to be where I worked on my writing and admin, yet more frequently I find myself still wading through admin an hour in to my working session. I seem to be drawn to comments made on my Facebook account and spend far too long then browsing Facebook disappearing in to the lives of others (all of which seem to be straight out of a glamorous novel- way more sparkly than my life but unlikely to be the full story)

Today I have deactivated my Facebook account. It immediately threw images at the screen of my friends around the world asking me if this was really what I wanted and my friends would miss me. I'm feeling increasingly squeamish about Facebook and the fact that everything I pop on there including photos of my family and friends belongs to Facebook and with which they can do exactly as they wish.

Currently, I'm giving myself a week to decide if this is the right thing for me. If I feel this way in one week, I will go access Facebook, go into ACCOUNTS, then delete my account permanently by pressing DELETE which will then remove all my information.

I do feel strongly about privacy and know that sites such as these are a good way to keep in contact with friends, but I keep in touch with those I want to keep in touch with via email and I seem to be in contact with squillions of people I don't really know anymore.

Just trying to declutter my life. Today, Facebook, tomorrow, my wardrobe!

Thursday, 23 June 2011

AdSense doesn't make sense to me!

You may notice that my blog is less busy today. There's good reason for it, I promise you. Recently, I read a really interesting article on 'Little Toof' blog about AdSense et al. I had accepted AdSense without really considering what I was doing, and thought that it would pretty up my blog if nothing else, but had quickly become rather annoyed with all the Vistaprint and Gap ads I kept seeing. I didn't mind Amazon or music ads so much, but this article really got me thinking. Why do we allow huge multi-million pound corporations to advertise on our private little blogs? What do they ever do for us? Apart from a vain hope that 0.1pence or cents or a squillionth of a euro will credited to my account if someone 'pushes their button', so to speak, what is the point?
I know that the world is going slightly mad with internet advertising, viral campaigns and the like, but I really hate being encouraged to spend constantly, especially when researching or writing. I go shopping when I want to shop - all this SELLSELLSELL!!! is nonsense. It just makes my head spin.
My blog is my blog. A tiny corner of the world wide web is where I speak my mind and trade my wares. Have you ever seen a Speaker on Speakers' Corner (Hyde Park, London) stand on their soapbox, passionately engaging their audience while holding a placard that says "Shop at Vistaprint!" or "Buy Gap!" ? No. Me neither.
Freedom of speech and corporate advertising don't really rub along all that nicely. And so, I have deleted Ad Sense from my blog. I feel a ton better for doing so. Although, it's now a bit lonely in here so I need to learn how to add my work, pictures and film clips!

Friday, 17 June 2011

One small step for Mouse! Writing and walking firsts.....

Today has been another day of firsts for me:
Writing Firsts
1. I have learned how to promote my blog through commenting on other blogs and leaving my blog details at the end of my comments
- it sounds so simple and now I can see ways forward :)

2. I've been contacted to do a little research on a living history group
- hopefully this will lead to a few articles, local and national, fingers crossed x

Walking Firsts
3. I walked around Marks & Spencer using my two little sticks and left my crutches in the car!
- I was extremely nervous and had a little panic after 10 minutes, but nothing a skinny latte and a large piece of carrot cake couldn't mend

4. An optician's appointment has left me speechless!
Dizziness and blurred vision have blighted me for the last few weeks - it appears that after coming off Tramadol and having 12 weeks of awful side effects, the tramadol-free me now has weakened eye muscles causing double vision. Bizarrely, the same side effects I had when I started with Tramadol three years ago. Unbelieveable!

Doesn't life do this to you sometimes? A good and a bad all in one day? But hey - onwards and upwards!

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Promotion is Key - KatesWords is officially open!

I've spent the morning trying to promote KatesWords as my writing website (not quite ready) and my KatesWords blog (here it is - 3 followers today - thankyou girls!) and find how to reach the world - sadly, it has taken me a good few months to realise setting up my blog is great and everything, but if no one is reading it - I'm no further forward writing than I was when I hid my notebooks and diaries under my bed!
I recognise now that I need to:
1. Promote myself through every web based group I'm a part of (Writers Bureau, Facebook etc)
2. Include my blog address at the end of any related article, letter or blog reply
3. Give my blogs a title rather than a date - now I'm not sure why I did that other than diarise my thoughts as I always have found that an easy way to record
4. Make my blogs shorter and snappier possibly - hence the bullet points! Not too many though - don't want to turn back in to a teacher!
5. Focus focus focus.

After two fabulous days in York listening to the amazing Jim Bianco and Brian Wright at a house concert I've come back incredibly inspired and raring to go. House concerts exist all over the world - lovely folk invite musicians to play, interested parties to listen and bring a bottle of diet coke, wine cider etc and life is good. Can't wait for the next one!

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Wednesday 1st June

I've been paid for my voiceover script! And not in buttons! How exciting - it is so rewarding to receive payment for a piece of writing you do - I know that I write anyway, but there's always part of me that would love to earn a living from my writing. Hopefully, one day.

There are early discussions of a novelisation of 'Jack and Doreen- A Personal Journey' now, which I can barely dare to believe, but I'm just waiting to hear something a little more certain about that before I start working on it - I do like to rush in, but I must try to hold back until I have more details......

Hoping to work on some travel pieces over the next few days in Whitby - we're going off with the boys - I've thought about writing some pieces for English Heritage and Parenting  magazines so I will have my notebook with me at all times!

The boys enjoy trekking around the abbey, the back streets and a little rock pooling thrown in, so hopefully I'll be able to make enough valid notes to prep an outline or three when we get back from our weekend away.

Since my morphine has been stabilized at 62.5 mcg I seem to be able to do a little more writing each day. The morphine seems to be managing the pain without making me too dizzy or drowsy - so fingers crossed! I seem to be coping better with the housework and my writing at the moment - the children are gorgeous and are so understanding, but I will be able to take them swimming on Saturday for the first time in months. They are so patient so I'm pleased I can do this with them. That will be a first for me again - there seem to be quite a few of those these last few weeks!

It's half term this week, so writing isn't happening as often as I like - I try to write every day, but the boys come first . Tomorrow, my Dad is having the boys for a day so I can focus on some writing - I have a short story I need to tidy up before sending it in to a competition. He's such a big help - hopefully they'll be off to Clumber Park or Sherwood Forest letting off steam while I tap away on my lap top!

I think, perhaps,  my eternal optimism is finally starting to pay off!

Wednesday May 25th

Working for Mike on a voiceover script which is fabulous luck – I am so enjoying myself – I can even cope with the disaster that is my life when I’m writing and my gorgeous kids are close :):) 

Writing about this couple and the adventure they had travelling around the world in 16 weeks and 2 days (or 114 days) is so interesting – my geography skills are coming on a treat! The research element of writing is so interesting - I have photocopies of old diaries and newspaper articles, then I need to google sections of the journey, the areas at specific times Iran in the 1950s for example, and the history of the whole 'New Australians' tickets that people bought after the second world war to move to Australia. White Europeans, particularly the UK, were encouraged to repopulate Australia - quite uncomfortable stats about who they were willing to let in and who they discouraged at that time.

Done a fourth draft and need to hear what Mike and Andy think about it – have made even more amendments since I sent it so will do those first thing in the morning. The deadline is tomorrow - voice over is due to be done next week and the actor is reading the script at the weekend before commiting it to tape on Monday.

Can I just be a writer please and get paid every job? Not just be thankful for a little credit in a newspaper or my name in print in a magazine? They don’t feed my children!