Flash drives float, Fun at the beach, and other inspiration from Dragonspire!

Welcome to my monthly inspirational Thursday post!

This week, why you shouldn’t carry everything upstairs at once, our beautiful beach, writing in the sunshine, crazy fangirling, and story idea management tips!

TL;DR: I spent a lot of time at the beach, took lots of pictures, devised a rating system for books and TV, and nearly broke my flash drive.

beach writing.jpg
Image: Writing at the beach. Clear blue skies and golden sands ❤ There’ll be lots of beach pictures this post. I got carried away!

I can’t believe last month I was taking pictures of snow! This month we had a mini heat wave, so I spent days out, at the beach, sunbathing writing on paper because it was too nice to be inside. The only problem is I gotta type it up after, and half the time I can’t read my own writing!

But first? Did I meet my goals?

Exercise and Eating:

I discovered dairy free chocolate. My fiancée’s mum got me a bar for Easter, and since then I’ve eaten two large bars. I’ve been exercising regularly, which is great as it inspires new ideas, but my weight’s been stagnant for two months. I need to watch what I eat better.

Writing & Blogging:

Camp Nanowrimo was a great experience. I had a moment where I got ahead of my daily goals, but I fell behind because I took advantage of the great weather whilst it lasted. I’ve not caught up yet, but I have a few days left and hope to reach 25k by the end of the month.

I also spent a lot of time changing the theme for my blog. Yup, procrastinating again when I should be writing!

Moving on, let’s look at the good things, and inspirational things, from this month.

Fun fact of the month:

Flash drives float, and I nearly cried when I found it out.

I can be a little lazy. Rather than making two trips upstairs to my office, I’ll stack up my things (notebooks, USB, pens) and carry them in one hand and a glass of water in the other.

The other week my pile of stuff slipped, and when I tried to catch it I moved the hand which held the glass towards it. The result? A very wet flash drive, floating in my glass of water, and a panicked writer who works from said drive all the time and hasn’t backed it up in weeks.

I tossed it on the radiator to dry out, and thankfully flash drives are pretty resilient!

I know what you’re thinking: Use Dropbox/Google drive/Cloud storage. Store documents online. I can’t. I don’t trust it’s secure, and I’m as possessive as a dragon over my things. I’ll just learn to be more careful with my stuff in future and keep it backed up!

smaug
Image: Smaug hording gold. My treasure ideas.

Inspiration from other writers:

My cabin mates for Camp Nanowrimo are awesome and their progress is phenomenal. I’ve been checking in when I can, except last week when I got distracted by the beach, and seeing the progress of others towards their goals is very motivating.

I only wish there were an easier way to communicate than the single scrolling forums: It’s hard to keep track of when there’s lots of activity! I’d love to start a writers forum or discord at some point. I know, there’s Facebook groups, but I’m not a fan of Facebook and I feel like it doesn’t offer much in the way of open discussion. Discord though? It’s great, and free!

Inspirational blog posts:

This month I discovered Canva. One of our #turtlewriters on Twitter shared a great guide on how to use it, and the timing was perfect as the #FlashFicHive challenge on the 19th April was to create an aesthetic based on a short story.

Normally I’d head straight to Photoshop, but it eats up RAM on my computer (which crashes when I view GIFs sometimes) so I thought I’d give it a break and try Canva. The fonts are more limited than I’m used to, but the templates and ability to upload pictures is really cool. I think you’ll be seeing a lot more aesthetics from me in future!

Reflection
Image: Aesthetic created on Canva. Images from Pixabay. Short story here: On Reflection.

How to manage story ideas:

I have a box on my desk with tons of scraps of paper in it listing ideas I want to write one day. I write a short story a week. A lot of these clamour for my attention. They want to be something more. It’s very distracting when I’m trying to focus on one work in progress.

One of our Author Toolbox participants suggested we should write a rough query before starting to write a story to see if it has the potential for more. I love this idea, and I’m going over my ideas to see which have potential. I hope to narrow down my list, so I don’t get so overwhelmed by ideas that I can’t focus on my current project!

Inspiration from TV: Devising a rating system

I re-watched the parts of Daredevil season 2 where The Punisher appears this month, and I’m re-watching The Punisher too. I’m addicted to this show and I’ve fallen down the fandom rabbit hole, again. I’m shipping Kastle (Frank Castle and Karen Page) so hard I might burst from enthusiasm, and I can’t wait for season 2. I might even write fanfiction for this show.

My enthusiasm got me thinking about how I’d rate various books, TV shows and films,* and I was inspired to create a rating system.

* I also ended up on Tumblr looking at fanart and messing around with my profile.

5 stars
5 stars

5 stars: Reserved for the most Epic.

Adored it. I’ll read/watch it over and over. I won’t shut up about it. I’ll drool over fanart. I’ll read (and maybe write) fanfiction. I adore the writer for creating these outstanding characters. I’ll be stuck in fandom for weeks. (Merlin, The Punisher)

4 stars
4 stars

4 stars: Excellent.

Excellent, but I’m not dragged into the fandom rabbit hole. There’ll be a few niggles with characters, plot, or something.

3 stars
3 stars

3 stars: Average.

Good, but not particularly memorable. Wasn’t disappointing or bad, just didn’t stand out.

2 stars
2 stars

2 stars: Not great.

Okay, but didn’t engage with the characters, the ending was poor, the story was badly paced, or there were major flaws in plot which had me groaning and banging my head on the desk.

1 star
1 star

1 star: Awful.

Terrible. I can’t think of anything good to say about it. The characters are wooden. The description is lifeless. The plot is full of holes, etc.

I’m tempted to include DNF’s in my one star category, but only if I were really looking forward to something and didn’t like it at all (Altered Carbon). Most things end up with a 3 star rating, and a 4 star rating from me means you got my attention. 5 stars means I’ll idolise you.*
*And send you fanart, and hope you notice me!

Favourite picture taken:

crystal clear beach water.jpg
Image: Waves crashing against the shore on a sunny day.

The sea. I crouched down in the waves to take this picture. The water was freezing, but it was worth it. Look at how it sparkles in the sunshine! I spent a lot of time staring at the edge of the water pretending to be Moana writing at the beach, since the weather was fantastic.

I wrote 1200 words on paper in a few hours, although I did splash around in the water, chat to my mum, and eat lunch too. (I’m making excuses. I slacked off last week. Looking at these views though, can you blame me?)

waves crashing against the rocks.jpg

Finally, the Sunday Scribbles prompts for May are:

ss may prompt list
May prompts: 6th: Dance. 13th: Murky. 20th: Follow. 27th: Comic.

Stories or lines written using the prompts can be shared under #sunscribbles on Twitter on the dates listed above, or in the comments of my May Sunday Scribbles posts.

scales divider copy

Thanks for reading!

How do you rate books or TV shows? Are you participating in Camp Nanowrimo? Are you on target to meet your goals? Any articles you’ve found inspiring? Share them below!

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5 comments

  1. I love the idea of using Canva for an aesthetic! Never would have thought of it. And I would have cried, too, finding out flash drives float. That is valuable information which I hope never to use.

    Liked by 1 person

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