Wonderbox Publishing

The last week has been pretty productive, though I don’t want to share too much about the projects I hopefully have in the bag just yet–I don’t want to jinx anything.

However, one thing I will talk about is Wonderbox publishing.

I mentioned a while ago that my story was submitted and accepted in November. Things got a little delayed, and while I’ve been paid, the actual publication hasn’t come out yet. Well, it’s about to. But I need your support.

They’ve created a Kickstarter Campaign to raise some money to pay the contributing authors (that’s me!) more money as well as to create a hardback version of the anthology. Their goal isn’t particularly much (considering I saw another Kickstarter for an author who was asking for $10k for her second book), only £1,600. However, anything you can do to share, to donate, whatever, would be amazing.

Thanks guys!

Normal Deviation: 
The Completed Weird Fiction Anthology

Normal Deviation

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Three Day Three Quote Challenge – Day 1

I think the last time I was nominated for one of these was probably when I first started the blog. I was jobless, waiting for school to start, and so all I had to do was obsessively sift through blogs. It was fun, though not as productive as I had hoped it might be.

However, I do remember these things as being quite fun! So here it goes:

Firstly, I want to thank Robin Leeann for the nomination. Her blog I actually came across as the result of one of the many writing-related Facebook groups I belong to. She is also one of the blogs that I try to make sure I read regularly (Common, we all have our favorites!).

I heartell there are some rules, so I’ll post these puppies:

The Rules:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you
  2. Post a quote for three consecutive Days (one quote each day)
  3. Nominate three bloggers each day

So, I’ve done the first part, now I’ll get on with the quote, shall I?

Quote

“What is an adult? A child blown up by age.”

Simone de Beauvoir

I won’t lie. I didn’t have that one ready at hand, so I don’t have anything to say about it. I just quite like Simone de Beauvoir, and thus thought that I would quote her. I’ll do better tomorrow.

The Nominations

Now for the fun part! I nominate:

  1. Life with Mrs. T.
  2. The Non-Alcoholic Student
  3. The EcoFeminist

Happy Quoting!


Don’t forget to visit my website and subscribe to my newsletter at www.AuthorNJThompson.com where you’ll find book reviews, updates, and flash fiction. You can also contact me there about my editorial services for your manuscript.

Update: Snow and Writing

My last post was a bit of a winge. I will give you that. So I thought I would update and iterate that it wasn’t as bad as it felt at the timeand update in general.

Snow

The snow is finally easing off. Most of yesterday was above freezing, and I could even see some green patches of grass around the caravan where it was just finally pissing off, as requested. We still don’t have any water, since our pipes are still frozen. But I’m off to work in an hour and I suspect that the frozen pipe issue will have remedied by the time I get home. As I am writing this I can hear the water trying so hard to come back on! There are drips!! This is very exciting as we’ve been without for four (this is our fifth) days!

I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited to do dishes in my life.

Honestly, while I was frustrated, it wasn’t as bad as I made it seem. We had electric the whole time, which was fine. Our gas worked the majority of the time, which meant we could cook. We were able to go to one of the farm houses and use their water for a shower and to fill up water bottles to bring here so we could drink (coffee), wash the minimum amount of dishes, keep the dogs hydrated and cook.

None of the dogs died from being too cold. Our chicken didn’t die (Did I mention we have a chicken and hatching eggs???) and the birds outside this morning are sounding pretty pleased with themselves.

Also, the week from school (yeah, week from school because between strikes and snow days, I haven’t been to one lecture or tutorial in a week)

Writing

My Project

As I wrote about a few days ago – and have had some pretty positive response to – I am trying to get a publishing project off the ground at the university. I’ll tell you, it’s slow going. While I know the project has been dispersed via a few news letters, I’ve so far only had one student response, who seems quite keen. I won’t lie, I don’t know what to do now. I’ve asked for some background information, and he sounds like a good option, but I don’t know if I should just say ‘great, you’re in!’ without actually meeting him first. However, because I’m impatient, I’m thinking I’m going to just tell him ‘welcome aboard’ and go from there.

But I don’t actually know where to go from there. I mean, it seems logical to meet up with him any way, and we can start discussing the details of everything – how to set up the web page, what our first theme will be and so on. But I’m thinking that I should give it a little bit more time to try and acquire a fuller team before I start moving ahead. After all, I think it’s only been a week or so that the word went out.

The problem I’m facing regarding this is that I’m hoping to get the website and call for submissions out by the end of May with a deadline of August and a selection by September. This would allow the first issue to be out by November. Which sounds like a good plan, except we have to consider that I’m planning on working with just students. In two weeks, March 16th, we all go on break until April 15th (or thereabouts), so a lot of students will be going home. After that, it’s only two weeks until exams, which will be going all month long. My first exam, I think, is on May 4th (maybe 9th?), and the last one is on the 26h. After that I’m done with uni for the summer.

Because of this schedule, I don’t know how many people are going to be able to devote any time at all toward this project and getting it set up. I don’t know how many will have time to respond now. THe only thing I can think to do is get the guy who’s responded, work with him to try and get things done as much as we can between us, and hopefully people will respond to the submission call, and we can try and recruit more people over the summer for aspects like graphic design.

So while I’m impatient, I”m impatient for a seemingly legit reason.

Non-Uni Projects

I’m working on a short story at the moment for a competition. Among all the other things I’m doing, I’m trying to turn out short stories on the regular to submit to paying competitions in an effort to get some more cash flow. This week off has been pretty helpful with both essays and creative writing, but it’s also been pretty influential on my laziness,

Carpe Nocturne

While I had mentioned that there was a bit of a delay with the last Carpe Nocturne issue coming out, there is still that issue. I’ve been in contact with one of the section editors who has been in contact with the producer of the magazine, though he hasn’t heard anything new yet. While I had hoped that this issue would be out by the end of February, it’s still not out.

Wonderbox Publishing

The Anthology still isn’t out. I haven’t heard anything more about it either. The last I had heard, the digital copy was going to be released and there was going to be a Kickstarter (or some equivalent) to get a print version on the go. I thought that in order to make that happen, it would have started ages ago. However, again, I haven’t heard anything.

Ugh. Writers.

Blogs

And, just as a general self-promotion, I thought I would share my recent blog posts from other blogs. Actually, I”ve only written in one blog other than this one, so I’ll essentially just list and link the blog entries (nice and simple, yes?)

 

A General Update: What is Going On with Writing

Of course, as to be expected, university and general life has kept me pretty busy.  But I do have some writing news that I thought I would share.

New News

First of all, I am now an editor of Durham University’s online magazine, The Bubble, specifically an editor of the environment section. I am one of three, and since our writers are pretty few and far between, I am essentially one of the writers for it as well.

Wonderbox Anthology

I haven’t heard any more regarding my publication with Wonderbox, so I think they’re running a bit behind. Initially they had said they hoped the digital copy would be released by the end of February, though it’s pretty close to it and I haven’t heard anything about it, nor seen any advertisement on their social media.

Carpe Nocturne

Carpe Nocturne has also had a few setbacks, and the winter issue that was meant to come out in the middle of January should be hopefully released at the end of this month as well, though the communication has been pretty scant.

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Blogs

However, despite the addition of projects and setbacks of other publications, I have had time to get a little bit of blogging in on my other two blogs:

Hodgepodge and Food Gathering, my frugal-living blog: 10 Things I’ve Learned About Incubating Chicken Eggs
As someone who hasn’t really done the incubating thing other than when I was maybe 7 and in elementary school (I recall a whole farm unit. I think I had a teacher obsessed with cows), I don’t really know too much about incubating eggs. So I thought I’d share what I learned.

Hopscotch and Woolgathering, my travel blog: Brancepth, County Durham
We happened upon a very quaint little village, and thought I would share our experience.

Other

I have a new project that I’m working on through the university, though until it gets at least slightly off the ground, or starts rolling in one way or another, I don’t know that I’m ready to talk about it. So that’s about all you get from that!

 

Why Welsh Autumns Are the Best

I have a love/hate relationship with North Wales. I have spent my whole life visiting here, and while I’ve always loved seeing my granny and going to the beach when I was a child, moving here straight out of high school was a whole different experience. Being that it’s pretty touristy, I would go from manic summers where I was working 60-100 hour weeks (divided (mostly) between jobs), to having so little work that I needed benefit assistance to get me through the winter. It’s kind of intense.

I did that for the first four years of my adult life, and when I did finally move back to the States, I said I’d never do it again.

Well, here I am. I’ve just survived the insanity of the summer (with an injury this time–60 hours work is not my game any more, it would seem), and entering into the autumn. And I realize now why it is that I stayed for so long. The autumns here are the best.

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  1. It’s Quiet
    This is something that you wouldn’t really think of to notice unless you went through the summers here. People come from all over the country, and sometimes the world, to visit North Wales during the summer. It’s a beautiful place and there’s plenty to do–from the coastal paths to sailing to surfing, to just spending too much money.
    The village I live in, at the time that I first lived here, had a permanent population of 800 people. I read one year that during Wakestock (a now extinct festival), the population rose to 20,000. That is insane! Then you have all the sailing races that the rich folk like to be there for, and all the other events that are now catering to the business of the season.
    So when it’s done, and school kicks in and everyone goes home, the villages are like ghost towns. It’s amazing.
    You can find parking. People aren’t getting in your way because–let’s face it–people in herds get dumb. People are there to relax opposed to spend money, so they’re more likely to be friendly and take the time to be polite. It’s just nice, relaxing, and quiet.
    img_3620
  2. The Weather
    img_3623I have so many locals disagree with me on this one, but I swear it’s true–the weather is better when there’s no tourists. I’m not saying the tourists drive the weather to rain, because I’ve totally been here during the summer months, as a tourist, and had beautiful weather. No, what I’m saying is that the best weather months are May and September through October. All the rest of the months are just rain, kind of bleh, for the most part. There are the odd nice days, or partially cloudy days, but not nice nice. Or if they are, they’re too hot (for my liking at least).
    But the reason why the autumn nice weather is better than the May nice weather is because it’s relaxing weather. Coupled with the calm after the storm, the sun and the mild warmth is pleasant. It seems to seep into the bones more. You want to be in it, but you want to relax in it. In May, you’re so energized of breaking through the lethargy of the winter that there’s too much to do, to much want to do any of it. But after the summer, the warmth soaks into you with a slight breeze that carries my next point…
  3. The Leaves
    img_3558I know, I know, it’s everyone’s favorite part of autumn. But it truly is worth noting. After the trees have been lapping up the delicious summer rain, they’re drying up and ready to change and shed their leaves, and they just smell divine.
    I come from a place that looks like it’s been carved out of the trees. I’m not a stranger to masses of trees and their leaves changing. And I love it. There is a heavy dose of ecstasy when I watch the swirls of leaves across the road.
    But there’s something different when the leaves are coming from the Welsh Snowdonia mountains. I spend a lot of time in the slate-mine village of Blaenau-Ffestiniog, and so I drive and walk through the woods quite a bit. And I cannot tell you how much joy those leaves bring me.
    The tips of the leaves are singing to orange and yellow, and they are just so eager to act as a veil to my destination. Combine that with the rolling quilt of the farmlands that look like they’re lumpy with kittens–it is something breathtaking.
  4. Mushroom Hunting
    As a budding mushroom hunter, I cannot get over how many varieties of fungus there is around here. Don’t get me wrong, I’m spoiled rotten for the fungus amung us in the Pacific NorthWest, but here is just as lush with specimens. When I was growing up, in August, Granny and I would always pick field mushrooms just outside her house. I could see the fairy rings they grew in from the windows, and loved to just marvel at them. Now, as an adult, I’m on the hunt for culinary purposes, and just general curiosity. I have a fascination with them, and there are a plethora all over the Snowdonia National Park.

Until you experience it, you won’t know the difference between a Welsh autumn and that of one in Scotland, The Pacific Northwest, or Germany. And in all honesty, I’ve only experienced one of the three I just mentioned. But if you have the chance to spend a month and a half in Wales, make it the last half of August through to October. It’s worth it, I promise.

Happy Equinox, dear reader.

What is your favorite seasonal experience? Is there any location that you find to be unique with its seasons? I want to know! Let me know in the comments!

Yet Another Blog

I know, I know, I’m going a little bit crazy here. But I’m discovering more and more that I have my mother’s want for being organized. Who knew I would take on some of her traits, right?

Instead of having one blog that covers my traveling, my studies and whatever else, I’m seperating it all. As you might know, I do, actually have a travel blog called Hopscotch and Woolgathering. It’s pretty entertaining, if I do say so myself.

However, as of today, I also have another blog about my partner/copilot/pilot (code-named Guy in this blog), about sustainable, low-cost living and living off the land. I’ll write about being on the farm in here, but I’ll also write about it in the other one, mostly from an environmetnal persoective. This new blog will also talk about foraging (which I wrote a little about in a past entry here) in the UK, gardening, some hunting, fishing, and hopefully will have some bits and pieces on what to do with the crap we forage/catch.

Without further adue, my new blog:

Hodgepodge and Food Gathering

Writing Horror to Music (and other playlists)

I’ve never once wanted to go as deep into my characters’ brains as to know what kind of music they would listen to. However, as I go through this last pass of my current work in progress, I am finding that I have to write a few extra chapters, and it’s forcing me to delve into what it is that they would be listening to.

While I’m still compiling playlist on YouTube to help me, I’m actually, as I edit, falling back onto something I was listening to more during the winter, and I think maybe in the fall? But it’s an hour of ambient haunting music–and I just love it. It’s subtle, it’s quiet, it blocks out the background noise of wherever I am, and it puts me in a fantastic writing mood.

The only problem is that it puts me in the mood for writing horror–which is fine, that’s not to say at all that I don’t write horror. But i’ts just a little too over the edge for what I’m writing now. As a result, my characters are slowly getting creepier.

However, I actually just wanted to share this track, because I just think it’s so great.

Haunting Music – 3 Hours 
Haunting Music ~ inspiring, motivating music for reading, writing, drawing, painting and art
Posted by White Noise  Relaxation

It should also be noted that White Noise Relaxation also posts happy music for studying, chill out lounge, morning bossa nova, ukulele, Christmas music for children, and so on. I make mention of this so that you know that this particular YouTuber is quite eclectic, and if you don’t need horror-type music, then you can still find something that might suit your needs.

 

I would love to know what music you write/study to. What genre do you write? What topics are you studying? Do you do something else with certain types of music?