March is drawing to an end, and it’s been a month of being brave and trying new things. I’m very excited to recap it all!
Previously in Writing
I finished revision #6 of the GIANT ROBOTS project in February, took some time to relax and work on new projects. But a few things about that manuscript weren’t sitting right with me, so I picked it up again and did my quickest edit ever, getting the book into a state I was properly happy with it. I’m not usually a fast rewriter, so I feel like I definitely leveled up my polishing skills this time around.
Since then I’ve been using my new-and-improved editing abilities, plus a lot of the lessons I’ve learned over the last few years of writing, to redraft my oldest project, DIVIDE. That’s been going really well, and I’ve been enjoying tearing it down and rebuilding it.
My monthly goal was to hit 20k words. Done and dusted!
Previously In Gaming
To celebrate the end-of-edits, I took some time to relax and play video games. Life Is Strange was a favourite — an emotional, episodic and LGBT-inclusive game about a high school student who sees best best friend get shot and time travels to save her. It plays a lot like an indie movie, with gorgeous scenery and amazing music. Highly recommended.
I also finished Murdered: Soul Suspect, a game about a murdered cop who decides to keep working as a ghost to solve the mystery surrounding his death. It was a lot of fun, but horribly glitchy, to the point where I can’t recommend it. Really disappointing because, aside from the glitches, it was a lovely game. But the gameplay was flawed and irritating throughout, and it only got worse towards the end.
There’s a lesson there, I’m sure, about how shoddy basics can bring down an otherwise amazing story.
After that I had a go of Hustle Cat, a daft, funny game about a character (you pick gender/pronouns/ethnicity) who starts working in a cat cafe where the workers are all cursed to turn into cats. It’s super cute and lots of fun. I Kickstartered this project and it was great to see such an inclusive, funny game get released and live it to my hopes.
If you’re not playing Hustle Cat, you’re missing out. LOOK AT THESE ADORABLE CATS WHO ARE ALSO PEOPLE. pic.twitter.com/tu1dr0DvGd
— Emma Maree (@EMaree) March 18, 2016
This introverted dude brought me some calming, ‘sorry you’re maybe turning into a cat’ tea. You have my attention. pic.twitter.com/GsU8vTnWwI
— Emma Maree (@EMaree) March 18, 2016
— Emma Maree (@EMaree) March 26, 2016
Previously In Reading
After February’s wizard month, March has found me with my nose stuck in more beta reading, and China Mieville’s PERDIDO STREET STATION. It’s an absolutely fantastic book, with some really meaty, inspiring world-building.
I’ve also been reading THE FIRE SERMON by Francesa Haig in audiobook so I can clock in extra reading time. while tidying and cooking. It’s a very well produced audiobook, and a gripping story.
Previously In Art and Music
Another more-quiet-than-intended art month, with a lot of trying out new methods and tools. I did get to create some Celtic doggies I’ve been itching to make for a while, using the traditional Celtic style.
I also did something that was quite a big deal for me. I went for my first ever singing lesson. This has been a dream of mine since I was very young, but I had to push past a lot of shyness and self-doubt to finally chase it. And then I managed to get hopelessly lost in a pig farm en route, but I got there.
I was nervous, evasive, no eye contact, avoiding the song I brought. But after some encouragement, I put on “Satisfied” from Hamilton… which if you just met me isn’t something you’d expect me to sing. AND I NAILED IT.
My teacher was very, very proud and impressed with me, and I was over the moon. I’m still riding that high weeks later!
Next Time In Goals
April, and Camp NaNoWriMo, is going to be focused on getting DIVIDE into shape. I’m well on target to getting it done within a month, and looking forward to every minute of it.
I’m also going to keep up my weekly singing lessons, create more art, and spend some time enjoying the spring sunshine.
My April goal is to hit 30,000 words.
A Word of Advice
Be brave. This has been so important to me this month. Not only did I finally go to singing lessons, but I went indoor rock-climbing, which… ow. Double ow. It was painful, but worthwhile to do something I’d never done before.
And when I saw Miss Cole on Twitter doing the #PitMad contest on Twitter, I pushed aside an initial spike of self-doubt that told me my pitch would disappear unnoticed. I put my brave face on, and I added my story to the tide of amazing pitches from writers across the world.
Reactions were wonderful, and gave me a lot of renewed confidence and faith in my story.
So, be brave. Do the things that scare you.
I promise you, it’ll be worth it.