Insecure Writers Support Group badgeWelcome to July. No. I was all set to write my July IWSG post but I couldn’t access my website.  Then things got worse.  If you’re interested you can read more here.

Welcome to August.  A thousand things I thought might interest you have passed through my head like a soft summer breeze. This apology for an IWSG post comes to you courtesy of the Insecure Writers Support Group. Let’s visit and thank our co-hosts for the month:
Renee Scattergood
Sadira Stone
Jacqui Murray
Tamara Narayan
and LG Keltner!

The nominal question of the month is:

Has your writing ever taken you by surprise? For example, a positive and belated response to a submission you’d forgotten about or an ending you never saw coming?

My answer: Yes to the first. Constantly to the second. I think the best bits of my writing are when the characters take the story somewhere I wasn’t expecting. I’ve stopped several times and said ‘whoa!’ when I put down my pen.

That doesn’t always mean it’s good for the reader.

I was very pleased with my first version of Princelings book 9, finished in May.  My beta readers were confused by it.  However much I liked the things that happened they didn’t ‘get’ the idea of the serpent eating its tail, time-wise.

camp nano winner 2019
So after a good few weeks thinking, I headed off to Camp Nano for the second half of July and rewrote it in ten days.  Well, I rewrote the first half from scratch, moved various sections over for the second, and edited the wholly jolly lot including reading it aloud to the guinea pigs.  That really is the best edit you can do. Guinea pigs are optional, you can substitute cat, dog, plant, or goldfish if you like. It’s 14,000 words longer :O but they are better than the first ones.

Although, of course, it’s now back with my beta readers, and anything can happen.


As for anthologies, I was disappointed to realise that the story I had started work on in June had missed its deadline.  Another submission didn’t make the cut. So now I have to turn my mind to the IWSG Anthology, which closes on 4th September.

IWSG Anthology 2019That’s four weeks.


I can write 59k words in that, at Camp.  I must be able to get 3.5 – 5k beautiful words done in time.

Mustn’t I?

Voyages.  MG Historical, Fantasy… time-travel.  It’s made for me!

#IWSG – Welcome to July, no, August, insecure writers!
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10 thoughts on “#IWSG – Welcome to July, no, August, insecure writers!

  • 7 August, 2019 at 4:07 pm

    Reading to the guinea pigs! I also do a final read-aloud edit–perhaps I need to get a pet as an audience. It’s heartening to see how many authors answered this posting with tales of characters taking their story in a new direction. Good to know I’m not alone there. Best of luck with their beta readers. FWIW, I get the snake reference.

    • 8 August, 2019 at 1:53 pm

      I think it’s better than reading it to an empty room, especially if your neighbours can see you. But you have to accept that they may fall asleep on you, even if the plot is sparkling and riveting!

    • 8 August, 2019 at 1:54 pm

      Right! 😉

  • 7 August, 2019 at 8:04 pm

    I sometimes read to my kitties. They sleep. My characters often lead me in different directions than what I’d planned. I like it when they’re right.

  • 8 August, 2019 at 1:56 pm

    Characters are nearly always right, although when they’re wrong, they may be more fun for the reader!

  • 8 August, 2019 at 9:49 pm

    Animal editors sound great, Jemima. But my Cavachon is critical if there’s no food involved. Glad to see the IWSH Anthology suits you – good luck. (My entry is proving tough, even with a goat supporting character.)

  • 8 August, 2019 at 11:00 pm

    4 weeks??! I’ve got to get cracking. While driving for hours yesterday I came up with the new opening line (that will make start #5, I think) for my IWSG story, but I need to make the thing happen.

    I also read my whole book aloud as a late-stage edit. I don’t have (or want) pets, so I use an empty room. Might need to move a plant in to give myself an audience, though I do have my stuffed-toy skunks and guinea pig. At least they can’t fall asleep.

    And what’s with WordPress and your blog? It knows I’m logged in when I hit “like,” but not when I comment?

    • 9 August, 2019 at 9:11 pm

      You’re having problems? I’m having problems! Hence the anonymous reply to Patricia above. I think it’s a hangover from the tech stuff last month. I’ve just upgraded Jetpack which includes the likes and sharing, but I think it’s stuffed the recognition bits as well. Or else it’s that cookie setting which has gone awol again.
      I don’t know why we blog really. It’s a plot by the ‘security’ people to ensure international non-communication 😉

    • 12 August, 2019 at 10:34 pm

      I think I may have fixed this now… is it working for you?

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