After the frantic word count goal of November, for those of us who participated in National Novel Writing Month, December is a strangely quiet month. No longer are we racing home after work to write those elusive 1667 words for the day’s total, and hoping to exceed them. We miss the rush, the excitement, even the panic. Initially, we feel relief, then goalless and at odds with ourselves. Now, we are floating in an undisciplined mode, unable to feel comfortable – that impetuous has gone.
We all know a goal is a good thing to have. It aids our making a deadline for publisher demands, editing and revising or any self imposed goal, whether for our writing or something else. So, what is the answer? Well, we have options:
1. Continue with our NaNo project and complete the novel.
2. Leave the project to ‘rest’ or percolate until the ending, plot arc, story line etc. solidifies in your mind (if it hasn’t already.)
3. Edit and revise what you have written. We all know it will need this at some point.
4. Begin another project, or return to another unfinished one.
5. Take a break from writing. Delve into the season’s festivities.
No matter which course you take, do what is best for you. Struggling to complete a writing project, when the holidays are approaching and you have other commitments, is not the way to go. Your project will be there waiting for you.
There are numerous movie adaptions of novels, and many we know well, due to their multiple adaptations. This is a list of the most frequently adapted stories. I also noted the first publication date, which shows how particular stories hold our imaginations, over and over. These span from the 15th century to the 19th century.
Hamlet Originally published 1599-1601 Adapted over 31 times
Pride and Prejudice Originally published 28th January 1813 Adapted 28 times
Frankenstein Originally published 1st January 1818 Adapted over 37 times
A Christmas Carol Originally published 19th December 1843 Adapted over 44 times
The Three Musketeers Originally published July 1844 Adapted over 10 times
Les Miserables Originally published 1862 Adapted over 50 times
Alice in Wonderland Originally published November 1865 Adapted over 20 times
Sherlock Holmes Originally published October 14th 1892 Adapted over 44 times
Dracula Originally published May 26th 1897 Adapted over 62 times
And Then There Were Non Originally published 6th November 1939 Adapted over 10 times
It is the magic of a gripping, relatable and empathic narrative that makes these stories so captivating. No matter how many times we read them, or even watch them, there is a deep seated attachment to the characters, their plight and how they develop within the story.
We all have our favorites from these titles. They have become traditional, a part of society’s fabric and will continue to do so in one way or another, I am sure. As an author, I can only hope one of my stories will be as well loved and cherished as these author’s work.
Which one is your favorite?
For me it is Alice as I love the delightful world inhabited with surreal beings.
At this time of year there is a multitude of events which could fill our calendars. The chance to meet readers in person and to sell books for Christmas gifts is a pleasure. Explaining how our stories developed, what we know about the characters and their journey and how we hope the story transports our readers is a special opportunity.
Even if sales are slow, you have reached readers you would not otherwise have met and that is worth your time. On the flip side you may have the opposite ‘problem’ and run out of books to sell. This is where a business card with your links on it are a bonus. Hand them out and let people know your books are available at other places, such as bookstores, libraries and online. You might not get that immediate sale, but there is potential for sales another time.
With so many events on the same weekends, it is difficult to know which one(s) to attend. It is a lottery of sorts. Even if an event doesn’t have super traffic, it is still an opportunity to connect with other authors and artisans. The bonus being you pick up some individually crafted items, rather than from a box store or retail.
I was so happy to find a ladder planter for my deck and a beautiful Xmas decoration at the last event I attended.
No matter the creative process or medium, we all write. A musician writes lyrics, sings songs and creates musical accompaniments. Welcome Chloey Rose, who delves into many creative forms.
1. When did you start writing song lyrics?
I started writing songs in my early teenage years and found music enabled me to express myself in a way I couldn’t without it. I feel as humans we are all unique and we should embrace that! I enjoy watching how a song transforms from basic chords on the piano or guitar to something magical. When songwriting, I always maintain mystery behind the lyrics too, their deeper meaning remaining secret within my heart.
2. Where does your inspiration come from for your songs?
With every song I always find myself intending to share a message with the world, my songs attempt to work through significant moments in my life and those of others I have met, they are often reflective learning from experience and reiterate the power in self-belief. I am mainly inspired by the stories I hear, things I’ve experienced and collaborating with other artists/producers. I also draw inspiration from artists such as the very talented Kate Bush, Billie Eilish and Taylor Swift. I was introduced to Kate Bush’s music by my Dad from a young age and when I first heard her I knew she had this magical voice which was unusual and captivating. It’s amazing to see how much recognition she is currently receiving and how her music has been highlighted through the TV Strangers Things Series. And Yes, I’m obsessed with the show too HA! Kate inspires me to strive to create my own sound and style without trying to be like anyone else.
3. Do you start with a melody or the words?
When writing, I usually experiment with certain chords on the piano and what feels right. Then I start humming the melody and the lyrics develop. The beginnings of writing a song are always the most exciting for me because it’s the unknown and I usually just flow with the process and see where it takes me. I try to write songs naturally rather than mechanically, without forcing the structure of a song. Sometimes I choose lyrics that best express what I am feeling or experiencing at that time or words that will best deliver the story and imagery that I am portraying through song. Personally, I feel writing can show vulnerability in the writer as feelings and emotions are shared and depending on whether the content is biographical or fictional. In Hopes and Dreams I was able to reveal my passion for music and personal determination to strive to achieve my ambitions through song. I always maintain a little mystery around each song’s true meaning, which I believe enables people to create their own understandings and interpretations to the songs and what it means to them.
4. Does your English heritage influence what you write?
It has definitely influenced my music, I feel a lot of my songs are inspired from the experiences I had in my hometown and the people I had met along the way. I am a Lincolnshire girl and I live on the outskirts of a historic fishing town Grimsby surrounded by the Lincolnshire Wolds and farmland. My songs such as Butterfly and Sky is Falling have a nature theme within them and many of my photographs include the background of fields and nature. Golden Sun my latest song release, supports a music video set in the beautiful English countryside.
5. Which singers/bands did you listen to as a child?
One of the main artists I’ve been influenced by since growing up is the very quirky Kate Bush, her lyrics and music always tell a theatrical story filled with emotion. I feel her performances are always captivating which always makes her stand out against others, her talent and stage presence gave me inspiration to shape my own style and sound without trying to be like anyone else. I liked and still hold in high esteem many artists, but for me it is ‘great songs’ that show great passion and emotion that I connect with even as a young girl. For instance, the outstanding film Titanic influenced my passion for music and I have funny video footage on my sixth birthday belting out Celine Dion’s My Heart Will Go On. Other early footage of young Chloey Rose includes renditions of Sting’s Fields of Gold and Elton John’s Can You Feel the Love Tonight.
6. How would you describe your musical style?
I would describe my music as pop, adult contemporary with a theatrical twist and music that you could hear on the soundtrack of a film or television series. Several of my songs have a folk and country feel to them.
7. What message do you want to convey with your music?
I really hope to share messages which help others relate to whether happy or sad and music that is inspirational such as Butterfly. I would like people to feel the emotion within my songs and uplifted by my music. As a performing arts and drama teacher I understand the importance of supporting young people in reaching their full potential and setting and re-setting personal goals and striving to achieve them and I feel my music is reflective of these intentions and holds truth and honesty within. Most importantly I want my songs to be relatable and people to be able to feel the emotions within my song, such as the theme of love and relationships in Hearts on the Line. I consider different themes when songwriting but intend to reflect ‘life’ and its rewards, struggles, fears, hopes and dreams in my music.
9. Will you continue exploring acting and modeling opportunities?
Absolutely! I feel very lucky to have the opportunity to do acting and modelling as well as my music. I was fortunate to be Miss Lincolnshire 2018-19 and my modelling has provided great opportunities to perform charity work. I thoroughly enjoyed attending the House of Ikon at London Fashion Week in September and am grateful for all those who support me. Acting has also been a huge part of my life and I love to perform with theatre and film experience and always feel at home on the stage. I love the excitement and challenge of working on different projects and always try to be as open-minded as possible to whichever opportunity comes along as you never know who you may meet, and these experiences continue to inspire new creative ideas.
10. Do you have a message for your fans?
I just wanted to say how grateful I am for their continued support over the years and how much it means the world to me to hear their feedback on all my songs. Thank you for appreciating my Music and I love you all! x
11. Where can people find you and your music?
The best places to fine me are on:
YouTube @Chloey Rose
CHLOEY ROSE is a stunning, talented, and unique Musical Artist, Actress and Model. CHLOEY ROSE’s new single “Golden Sun” is out NOW on Spotify, Sound Cloud and all streaming networks. Her music video for “Golden Sun” was released September 16 on YouTube and all music video platforms.
As an actor CHLOEY played the lead role in the BBC First World War Musical production of GREENFIELDS and BEYOND. CHLOEY ROSE also was Awarded “Best Supporting Actress” in Action Film Challenge for her performance in the film GRIMSBY RV, directed by Rob Smith. As a model CHLOEY ROSE was crowned “Miss Lincolnshire” and in addition was a Finalist in “Miss Great Britain”. She placed 4th in the “50 Sexiest Men & Women in Lincolnshire”. ROSE also placed third in “Miss Northern U.K.” and was a finalist in the “Miss British Isles” beauty pageants
Even though I am in the throws of the November writing challenge – National Novel Writing Month and as I write have surpassed the 37,000 mark, I do still read. This is for the Goodreads reading Challenge! Seems like there challenges all the way around at the moment, revolving around the written word.
This is my new total for book reading for 2022. I know some people have vastly larger numbers, and some less. It is not the number we are chasing, but the joy of reading stories. As you know I have an eclectic taste and read a variety of genres. You will see that of the five books in the illustration only one is a big name – my hero, of course, Stephen King. I will read his latest book before anything else once it is available. The other book are all from authors who live in Alberta. These are my contemporaries and I am always keen to read their work, but also support them by purchasing their books.
I will be adding to this list with my current read. An author whom I connected with through Facebook. I have interviewed her on this blog a couple of times too.
What have you read this month? What book are you most excited to read next?