Sunday, 19 June 2011

WIP Update: The Neglectful Author & DOOM

My friends, Mr. G said something to me Wednesday night that I was dreading hearing: "Since you started writing your novel you've become very serious. It's like you are always thinking about it."

I thought I was doing a great job of not thinking about it all the time. The one thing I don't want to do is neglect our time together, or make him feel as if I'm not really there. I no longer go on the computer in the evenings when I get in from work, and when we have a day off I try not to spend too much time writing or blogging. Obviously, I'm failing.

Now I know Mr. G would never try to stop me writing, and he has been a constant source of support and encouragement. But I don't want him to start feeling resentful either. I guess this is a problem most writers with non-writing partners face, and to a certain extent he'll just have to get used to it if I want to become a full-time writer. But doesn't that make me sound selfish?

Have you experienced this problem? How do you ensure you're not shutting yourself off from the people who really matter?

Changing the subject, the wonderful  L.G. Smith passed on the Blog Award Of DOOM to me. I have to admit I did nearly beg for this one; anything to do with DOOM appeals to me. Not quite sure what that says about my state of mind?

The award was created by the fabulous Sarah McCabe, and comes with rules:
  1. When you receive the Blog Award of DOOM your task is to post a short selection of your writing, 100-300 words, in which your favorite character suffers a horrible fate. It can be your favorite character from your own writing or from something you've read, it can be from a finished manuscript, a WIP or something you just made up on the spot. Your choice, but it has to be full of DOOM.
  2. Pass it on to one other blogger and let them know their DOOM has come.
  3. Remember that the person who passed the award on to you also received it as well. Go back to their post to read and comment on their writing sample. Make sure to thank them for sending the DOOM your way.
  4. Whenever you use the word DOOM in your post, you must capitalize the whole thing.
What to choose? For a change, here's a piece of flash fiction.

Coming For You

It is a simple matter of finding your weakness, then charting a path to your withered soul and holding fast.

When I find you I will dig my claws in and smile a joyless grin, and carve names upon your forehead for all to read. Beelzebub. Lucifer. Devil. No one will fail to see the evil hidden within you – it will shine like the death throes of a dying star and reveal the truth of the insidious darkness within your soul. It will envelope you until all that remains is the faint echo of your destruction.

I will take back what was stolen – my life for yours. You won’t be laughing then.

You made me and I’m coming for you.

I'm passing the award onto Madeleine at Scribble and Edit, as I know she will bring her own unique vision and descriptive powers to the word DOOM.

Update 19th June: I had a severe migraine on Friday and ended up in hospital. My long-term blog readers will probably remember I collapsed last November and had to be taken to A & E (ER for my American friends). The same thing happened again at work - I couldn't speak and my left side was weak for several hours. It wasn't a stroke and I've already had an MRI, so it's nothing nastier. I'm okay now, except I feel really weak down my left side still.

I was going to cancel this blog post, but as it was already pre-written I decided to leave it. If you are taking part in The Grapes of Wrath Blogfest, and I haven't visited your entries yet, I promise I will visit them as soon as I feel up to it.


  1. Firstly, I'm glad to hear it is nothing really serious, but wish you a speedy recovery.

    I know how you feel about writing and neglecting. I also try to stop when Mr B sits down for the evening. While he's busy pottering about I do my thing then. Sometimes I have to do it while he's sitting relaxing, but he knows what it means and I think he see's me trying to split things both ways so doesn't say anything. I'm hoping one day to be able to show him it was all worth it.

  2. So sorry to hear about the migraines :( I suffer from them too so I know how you feel. But I've never been hospitalized, thank goodness. though I have felt like I was just going to simply die on occasion. I hope you can find a way to push through them!

    Re neglecting you're partner, it happens to me too. :o( And I feel bad. But he's pretty supportive and he knows I'm only like that until I finish. And I make sure I take a decent amount of time off from writing in between stages, i.e. drafts and revisions and editing.

  3. Ellie, I'm really sorry to hear about the awful migrane. I hope you're feeling much better now.

    I think on the relationship front, each case is different. Every relationship has its unique qualities which need different treatment than someone else's. In the end, I think as long as a couple talk things through they'll do well.

    For a lot of us writing is a second job, even if it's not paying yet. That's demanding on the writer and on their relationship, but it's the only way to get to that point of giving up the day job.

    Your DOOM piece is amazing. It sent shivers down my spine. Fabulously written and very powerful.

    Congrats Madeleine :-)

  4. Oh no, poor Ellie! How awful and frightening. I hope *they* can sort out what is happening so that you don't have to go through this again.

    In our house it's the cats who feel neglected when we're both at our computers - they play up like bored toddlers!

    Congratulations on the DOOM award! Your piece is wonderful - stunning writing and atmosphere.

    Madeleine is a worthy recipient. I'll look forward to her piece too :-)

  5. Ellie, do take care and I hope the doctors can find the cause and sort it all out for you. Bless you for passing the award on to me, it did make me chuckle. I love your chilling last line: I will take back what was stolen – my life for yours. You won’t be laughing then.
    I try to give my attention to cats and hubby as much as possible, though sometimes it can be tricky. Hubby says I talk blog alot, OOPS!

    Off to put my thinking cap of doom on. Hugs :O)x

  6. Best of luck for the WIP - it's often hard to find the right balance in life.

    I hope you feel better soon.

  7. I take Friday and Saturday nights off from writing. I also blog three mornings a week only. That's how I handle my time for Sweetman.

  8. Ellie!! You poor woman!!! You get off the computer and stay somewhere dark and rest, rest, rest!! :-) Oh my stars!! That is one serious migraine attack!! No more seriousness from you for now!

    Loved your flash fiction!!! Very creepy and suitably haunting!! Yay!!!!

    Brigid O'Connor's hubby started his own blog about how it is being a non-writer partner living with a writer! Maybe Mr G should start one too? Yay!! take care

  9. Holy cow! You're rushed to the hospital and you bury that at the end? I'm glad you're okay. I wish there was something they could do for you. It sounds very scary.

    Ref: neglect
    I'm afraid the spouse, friends or pets are bound to feel neglected now that they're not your whole reason for existing. The goal is to reach a friendly balance. For me, the husband and dogs come first, then the homestead. Writing falls somewhere down the line.

    It's good he noticed though. :) He's paying attention.

  10. Oh Ellie I am so pleased it was nothing serious so please take care. Having had my own health issues of late I can envisage how you must have felt.
    Congrats on the DOOM award if congrats is the word,
    Take care.

  11. Feel better soon, Ellie! And good luck with that balance thing. It's a tough one.

  12. Very sorry to hear about the migraine. I've had a few of those myself and nearly lost my vision for the day. All I saw were white spots. Horrible feeling. Hope you feel better soon.

    Enjoyed your excerpt of DOOM. Chilling. :)

  13. so sorry about your migraine - I've had them in the past and I know how they can fell you.

    I, too, liked your excerpt :)

  14. Oh Ellie - I hope you feel better soon. I enjoyed your DOOM post. I struggle with time too. I struggle with writing family balance. I've started to force myself to take an evening or two off to spend with the family doing whatever we want. I get a nice break too. I know my constant work is tiresome to them at times, especially since they are just getting used to it (even after over a year of serious writing focus). I guess I take each day as it comes.

  15. You poor soul! I hope you're feeling very much better now. Have you any idea what triggers them?

  16. Migraines are horrible. Hope they find the problem. Loved the excerpt and I'm sure each of us has a different protagonist in mind while reading that last line!

    So far as the writing time, what would the situation be if the positions were reversed? Not trying to start a war, here, but think hard about it. The Muse generally can't be controlled and writing is tough. I like the idea of telling him to start his own blog -- maybe you can give him a niche to get him started? Thanks for stopping by.

  17. *hugs* That's not good! I've got a friends who's struggled with something like this for several years. Some docs even accused her of making it up and insisting they send her home. I hope they find out what's going on.

  18. Hi Ellie,

    Oooh, nasty! I thoroughly recommend Ginseng & Lime tea... It's a great pick-me-up. Hope you're up and kicking the MCs soon.

    Re neglect of hubby. Mine treats himself to DVDs, and being as he missed out on loads of the "Sharpe" series, he has the whole package so months of episodes to get through. And, a stack of others, including boxed set of "Rome". Hee hee, sorted!!!


  19. first, I sincerely wish you well and a speedy recovery!
    second, congrats on your DOOM award and your piece is tastefully foreboding =)
    and c, referencing the first section, i was starting to get addicted to the aw games and hd to drop it cold turkey...never thot it could happen to me!

  20. get well, quick, ellie!

    migraines can be NASTY! :(

    writing, or any other art, even a sport, can be as divisive to a relationship as parenting, where one parent spends most of their waking hours with the child/children... balance is imperative....

  21. I know some folks who suffer migraines, and they assure me it's not something you can ever adequately describe to someone who's never experienced one. You have my sympathies, Ellie, hope you are feeling better now.

  22. The combination of topics in this post suggests to me that maybe you do need to take a couple of days break. It'll help your relationship AND your health. Take care.

  23. oh, Sweetie! My heart goes out to you. Take care.
    Migraines are no laughing matter.

  24. Oh no, Ellie. I hope you regain your old strength back quickly.

    Your flash fiction was awesome. Loved it to pieces. Congrats on the cool award.

  25. So far I have avoided the DOOM!!
    My wife will let me know when I'm spending too much time writing - ir blogging. It's easy to get caught up and forget everything around me.

  26. Ellie, I'm so glad to hear that you are alright. Very scary.
    As for finding that balance at home, it is definitely not easy. Because I started to late, I'm having to really hustle in order to see what might happen. Thankfully, my wife ended up going back to school in the middle of our marriage in order to become a teacher, so she is giving me space to write.
    Good luck to you, my friend.


  27. Get better soon. I hate real bad headaches. Take care.

  28. Take care, Ellie! Hope you're feeling better...

    By the way, loved that flash fiction! :)

  29. Really hope you're feeling better soon, Ellie. I get migraines too and they're vile - but yours sound much worse.

    As to your original post - yes, I recognize that. I try, I really do try, to really be with friends and family when I'm with them and not only there in body while my mind is thinking about some story. Don't always succeed, though!

  30. Oh, Ellie! How terrible for you. Even knowing it isn't something more serious probably doesn't take away the fear you experience when this strikes you. I'm so happy you're doing better and wish you a full and speedy recovery.

    My husband is not a writer, but he is patient with me in the extreme. Only occasionally does he complain, and even then he isn't grumpy about it...more like gentle reminders that I need to take a break once in a while. I'm blessed to have his support, and I have made an effort of late to create more of a balance. His biggest peeve is when I tell him, "I'll be right there." He said he's come to know that means he'll see me in about two hours. LOL I'm working on it.

  31. I'm so sorry about your migraine! I hope you are feeling better.

    Nice excerpt and congrats on the award.

  32. Oh no! I hope you're feeling better now.
    I wonder what it is about writers and migraines? So many of us seem to have them on a regular basis. (I ended up in the ER once as well, where they almost killed me with a med I was allergic to!) We already know our brains are wired differently; maybe that's why. ;)


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