Why Returning To A Failed Creative Project Has Been One Of The Best Things I have Ever Done! #MondayBlogs

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Failure. It can give you sweaty nightmares, awful sinking feelings, clammy hands and a feeling of doom. This year I have learnt that failure also gives you a golden chance to try again and do things differently.

Take it from me – the buzz you get from seeing  success out of something you previously thought had failed is a game changer!

Returning to a failed creative project has been one of the best things I have ever done.

Here is my story and my reasons:

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10 Similarities Between Searching For A New Story & Dating #SundayBlogShare #AmWriting

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I am currently searching for a new story to work on. Story hunting is not easy. Just because you are a writer doesn’t mean you have a queue of ideas, all waiting patiently for you to do something with them. No, you have to spend ages feeling glum about not having anything to write about and then force yourself to go out and find new story ideas.

Things don’t run smoothly either when you do stumble upon a new story and get excited about it. You can quickly lose that ‘loving feeling’ for a story and it doesn’t take much for this to happen. 

After a few creative dalliances with a couple of new story ideas,  I can see some interesting similarities with dating.

Let me explain:

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How To Connect With Your Inner Biker Chick #MondayBlogs #bikergirl #Motivation

 

Connecting With Your Inner Biker Chick-2

I have been wanting to connect with my inner biker chick for sometime. If I am honest I don’t have the time to connect with my inner biker chick what with being a mother, a wife, a pet owner, working full-time, being a writer, a blogger and now a podcaster. There are not enough hours in the day. Anyway you will all be glad to know that I have now resolved this situation.

Your inner biker chick is your wild, leather clad, rebellious side which sometimes needs to come out to shake things up a bit.

We all have an inner bike chick inside of us and sometimes we get a powerful urge to connect with her, even though there might not be a motorbike in sight.

Through my writing I have connected with my inner biker chick. My fictional character Roxy Collins, in the latest episode of the ‘Diary of Roxy Collins Podcast’ on iTunes and here on SoundCloud has a date with Gordon; a biker and the lead singer of a rock band. Her best mate Shaz advises that she should use this dating opportunity to connect with her inner biker chick. I would like to point out that I had a lot of fun with this episode. Useful Kim has to be one of my favourite new characters for 2016. I can’t wait for listener feedback on Useful Kim!

After writing it I felt like my inner bike chick and I were much closer. Within an hour of finishing the podcast I was hot footing it down my local department store’s makeup counter asking to be taught how to do smokey eyeshadow, I browsed leather jackets in the Women’s Clothing department and I declared to my family that I wasn’t planning to do any ironing or sock matching for the rest of the weekend as I was a free spirit. (Rebellious huh!).

So, I thought I would do a blog post on how you can connect with your inner biker chick:

Biker Chick Mindset:

  • Take action!  Biker chicks don’t sit around waiting for something to happen – they do it themselves. So start writing that book, launch that blog or record that podcast TODAY!
  • Shun the expectations! Strong badass biker chicks don’t worry about what others think of them. So lose the concern over what people expect you to do or be in life. Focus that concern on being you and defining who you are!
  • Think confidently and act confidently. Imagine you are leather clad and sat on a monstrous bike – you can’t look uncertain and troubled in this scenario. Get that badass biker chick look in your eye, take some deep breaths, wear a stern smile and look like you ready for anything!
  • Exercise your free spirit. Practice freeing yourself from daily drudgery – in my book this means housework!

 

Biker Chick Wardrobe:

  • You want to be rocking the classy / edgy biker style.
  • Aim for the iconic black leather biker jacket, white t-shirt and skin-tight leather trousers. Roxy struggled with this look but fair play she gave it a go!
  • Finish off with some black shades and killer heels (in my head killer heels sound fab but in reality I will be crippled within half an hour).
  • Here are some celebs channelling their inner biker chick:

Biker Chick Makeup:

  • It is all about the smokey eyes for biker chicks. So check out this fab tutorial. 
  • For nails I love these black studded nail creations.

 

Have a great day!

Just going to get my leathers on and then have a nice soothing cup of tea whilst doing a gentle crossword.

Image: Adobe.

11 Unexpected Sounds Encountered Whilst Recording Podcast #SundayBlogShare #Podcasting

Unexpected Sounds Encountered Whilst Recording Podcast

Last week I launched my own podcast! 

The Diary of Roxy Collins, a fictional romantic comedy podcast, bit like Helen Fielding’s Bridget Jones, is now on iTunes and Soundcloud

If anyone fancies helping me increase my downloads / listener statistics – please click on the links in this post.

Creating this podcast has been a blast (apart from the mild irritation encountered with some technical issues and the post-launch ‘OMG what have I done?” emotional breakdown).

The rewriting of Roxy Collins and the actual recordings have been enjoyable and very useful. For me, the writer, bringing a character to life through audio has been invaluable. I have learnt so much about characterisation in terms of mannerisms, dialogue and flow of speech. It is only when you become that character and stand in front of a microphone do you actually start to understand them as a person. So regardless of how the podcast performs I have already learnt tons.

Recording the podcasts in my kitchen, daughter’s bedroom, the living room and in our rented holiday cottage bathroom has been interesting. Obviously I don’t have the luxury of a fancy recording studio so I have had to work with what I have around me.

During the recording sessions I have encountered some unexpected sounds, and at times annoying, which I never planned for. 

They resulted in my doing an eye roll, letting out a sigh, slamming the stop button, hitting rewind and re-recording. After the 13th time of re-recording one tiny clip the enjoyment does start to wear off.

I thought I would share these unexpected sounds with you:

  1. Church bells. You don’t know how many times I yelled ‘STOP RINGING!’ from my kitchen one Sunday morning. No one took any notice lol!
  2. Low flying aircraft. There is nothing like a fighter jet screaming overhead just as you are trying to record a heart warming kissing scene.
  3. Ticking clock. I had to take it down and remove the battery. V annoying with its loud tick tock!
  4. Cats keen to show off their acting skills. Our oldest cat ‘Harry Potter’ thinks he’s destined for the stage as every time I have started to record he starts meowing like crazy and purring extra loud.
  5. My noisy gut. Never record whilst hungry – I have learnt this the hard way.
  6. Washing machine. Me and my washing machine have fallen out on many an occasion during a recording. It’s ‘quiet spin’ is not what I would call quiet.
  7. Neighbours enjoying themselves. Every time I start to record some of my neighbours start to shriek with laughter or erupt into a loud cackle. At one point I felt like delivering some leaflets which said ‘can everyone stop enjoying themselves whilst I record this podcast?’
  8. Toilet sounds from upstairs. There was one occasion where a loved one had come back from the pub and they had clearly drank a lot of liquid. I was forced to sit and wait for the noise to stop. Sorry readers for raising this but it just went on and on..
  9. Kids squabbling. It did make me laugh as I was covering arguing children on the podcast and in real life there were kids squabbling in the background.
  10. Burp. I will not be recording again after drinking something fizzy…that’s all I am going to say readers!
  11. Wind. I will be cutting down on the fibre during recording months. Again that is all I am going to say readers! 

I hope you have enjoyed reading about the unexpected sounds I encountered whilst recording my podcast.

Please share some of your own if you have had similar experiences.

Have a fabulous day!

The Diary of Roxy Collins Podcast-2

 

Useful Podcasts For Writers #writers #writerslife

 

Useful Podcasts For Writers

Podcasts are a wonderful free resource for writers. Over the past few months I have overhauled my writing life and my newfound love of podcasts has played a key role in this transformation.

Below are the podcasts that have helped me reach a happier creative place:

  1. MWF Motivation. Rob Dial, motivational author, speaker and coach presents this podcast and he has had a huge impact on my creative life. In the past I have struggled with writing motivation and wasted a lot of time whining about how tired I feel, how I have not achieved any of my goals and how I have been working on the wrong stuff. Rob has changed me!  I liken this podcast to a ‘stern talking to!” – you know when someone takes you aside, tells you to get a grip of yourself , to stop moaning and just get on with it?  This is basically what Rob does to me every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I need someone to do this to me or I will just end up lying on the sofa, stuffing Oreo biscuits into my mouth and whining! Its not a pretty sight!  
  2. How To Be Amazing With Michael Ian Black.  This is a fab podcast. Michael Ian Black interviews some of the most fascinating celebrities and asks them how they became amazing. The Elizabeth Gilbert interview is brilliant. It is a good podcast for writers because all these celebrities have overcome challenges, worked through their self doubt and put in the graft to become amazing. They never gave up on their dream. Good life lessons for writers.
  3. Beautiful Writers by Danielle LaPorte & Linda Sivertsen.  I love this podcast. Danielle and Linda interview some inspirational writers and there are some great writing best practices discussed. I love how they say a creative prayer before they start the interviews and the podcast sounds like we are all having coffee. This was the podcast which introduced me to Steven Pressfield and his book ‘The War of Art’ – a game changing book! So will always be grateful.
  4. The Creative Penn. I am so grateful to Sacha Black for recommending this podcast to me. It is such a valuable resource for writers. Joanna Penn is a warm and bubbly host who has so much writing experience to share. She also interviews some interesting writers. Well worth a listen to!
  5. The Lively Show by Jess Lively. This podcast is like a little burst of sunshine. It is not aimed specifically at writers but is designed to uplift and inspire. The episode about ‘when the flowing gets tough’ is good and useful for us writers when we are blocked creatively or are frustrated with our work.
  6. Writing Excuses by Brandon Sanderson, Mary Robinette Kowal, Dan Wells, and Howard Tayler.  I could listen to this all day!  It is funny, insightful and full of useful writing stuff. The episode on ‘Stakes’ is really good and makes you think about what keeps your character in the game. The best thing about this podcast is that they give literary examples to support their ideas and techniques.
  7. BleedingInk with J.S Leonard.  This podcast is aimed at the indie author and is packed full of useful info, tips and interviews. Some good marketing tips on this podcast.

I hope you will find the time to check out one of two of these podcasts.

Let me know if you are listening to any great podcasts?

Have a great day!

Photo: Unsplash.