Living Ideas

I mentioned last month that by now I'd be in the throes of NaNoWriMo. I'm delighted to say that it's going really well. The prep was well worth it, and all the thinking an notetaking paid off. I diarised writing time and have been able to stick to it about 80\90% of the time. Also, instead of doing the avg word count per day (1667), I'm doing what's called 'Reverse NaNo', where you start with a much higher daily word count - in the 3000s and the following weeks, the daily counts go down. It really helped to get the high word count in the first 10 days, and as you read this, I'll be heading for 40,000 words. It's been fun so far, but I need to get finished by the 26th as I'm going away! So no faffing about for me :) Here's a peak at my draft cover.

The other November writing joy was the South Wales Christian Writers Day in Porthcawl. Bridgend. The main speaker was Mandy Bayton. She shared about the opportunities God has opened up for her in writing in the areas of writing and speaking, also her work with The Cinnamon Network. She also encouraged us on the subject of making connections in the world of writing. 
She charged us to "write anything and about anything," that we should take every opportunity. She also encouraged with the challenge - "find what inspires you -- use your voice to make a difference." Mandy shared that she writes about the things she is passionate about, the things that mean the most to her. Fuelling her writing with the subjects that fire her up, has improved her writing and opened doors which have led to more invitations to write and speak. 

She shared lots of practical tips, quoting a range of different writers. The one bit of advice that stuck with me was -- 'live with the idea.' When we have an idea, we should ponder it for while, keep it with us as we go about our day. It struck me that I had been doing this as I prepped for NaNoWriMo And it has paid off. Living with my ideas has, and I pray will, make those ideas come alive in me. I feel so blessed by that. 

After a super buffet lunch, there were opportunities for three workshops. One on Haiku, one regarding keeping financial accounts when selling books, or being paid for writing, and I led a workshop 'show, don't tell', in prose.

For the final hour of our day together, we sat as each had the chance to read some of their work. 

November has been smashing so far. Here's to the rest of NaNoWriMo and plenty more living ideas. 

Annmarie Miles is from Dublin, Ireland. 
She lives with her husband Richard who is a pastor in the Eastern Valley of Gwent, in South Wales. She writes short stories, magazine articles, devotional pieces for Christian radio, and blogs about her faith at Her first collection of short stories published in 2013, is called 'The Long & The Short of it' She is working on a second collection due for publication in 2018, and a non-fiction book about being an overweight Christian called, 'Have mercy on me O Lord, a slimmer.'


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