Happy New Writing Year – 2018

 

I’d like to start this new year by celebrating ‘firsts’.

This is the first month of 2018, and the start of my first full year of retirement. I’ve had a few weeks practice to get accustomed to the idea. To celebrate, I’ve reduced the price of all of my ‘first‘ in series to a mere 99p (or equivalent), and it’s an ongoing promotion.

Click on graphic to go to my website

 

What are my main targets for the writing year ahead?

– I have novels underway and intend to publish them this year.

– I aim to resurrect pages of notes and compile another anthology of short stories.

Czech Mate – a thriller set in Scotland and the Czech Republic.

Codename: Nightshade – a spinoff from my successful Beyond The Law trilogy.

One Man: Two Missions, and other stories – a collection of short stories and flash fiction.

What could be better than two more novels and another anthology?

I also intend to produce:

Curious and Camping – an erotic novel.

Quiet Night Inn: and other erotic stories – a collection of 12 short stories.

The updates and details of these two titles appear on Tom Benson – Erotica.

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Apart from my titles:

–  I’ll be assisting my distant friend and fellow author Carmen Lopez to compile her second anthology. Carmen is the author of Alone: and other short stories

– More reading and reviewing will be in order.

– I will continue to work with the other members of the IASD to produce the next anthologies we’ve planned.

– This may be the year I finally tackle the idea of a paperback version of my titles. I have the first in mind, but I’ll keep the title under wraps until I’ve made progress — or I need help.

– I’ll continue to go out on my bike rides to do a lot of my thinking and planning. My choice of ride affects my thought process, but more of that in a later post.

– I’ll also be drawing and painting, which are wonderful pursuits to allow ideas to develop.

– This year I will try my latest hobby – baking. What has that got to do with writing, you might ask. It depends on the results, but at present, I’m hoping that like cycling, it will allow my mind to wander. I can’t promise to publish pictures of my early failures, but I will no doubt let you see my successes.

Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts.

May the new year be as good to you as you wish.

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Exercising the Imagination

It took imagination to come up with the idea of Wonder Woman though having said that, it didn’t take much imagination to find the right actress for the part in the original TV series.  That lady was Lynda Carter.  I did the accompanying drawing in 1984. On the subject of exercising the imagination, Lynda wore a fetching patriotic costume.  It was the sort of outfit that made me wonder if Catherine Bach’s Daisy Duke outfit was loosely, or tightly based on the original.  I digress.  I always wondered what Lynda would look like without the starts and stripes … so I stopped drawing just below the shoulders.

As I beat the keys into submission with my efforts on Chapter 2 of my novel I occasionally take a break by writing poetry.  I’ve always professed to writing to suit all tastes since starting to write verse about three and a half years ago and I wanted to do something different.  Whilst thinking outside the box I realised I’d never written fantasy.  It was as I was listening to music and editing the photos in my screen saver that inspiration struck.  ‘Crystabel and Elf’ the mini-series was born.

Like all my mini-series the first episode is written without much idea about where the character or characters will go but a plot usually builds by the second or third.  This one has been no different and I find myself now working on ‘Crystabel and Elf – Part 4’.  There will be a lot of folk out there who probably don’t realise that these diminutive creatures that live in woodland etc, etc, have emotions and desires … enough.  Hang on … shouldn’t that be fairy nuff?

I caught sight of a particular lady and imagined her as a fairy … okay bear with me on this … I wrote rapidly for a few minutes to make the idea a reality … as writers do, then I wrote the first episode.  Romance is already in the air, amongst other places and I can already sense the desire to bring in a bit of adventure and heroics.  Did I mention the elf is originally from north of the border?  No, well he is!

If perchance you find yourself following the links to read about these little people feel free to leave a comment when the option is there.  My plots are sometimes comment driven so if a good idea is suggested I’ll run with it.

Okay, back to reality.  Thank you for reading this and I hope you find something else of interest on my links.

Multi-story block

My illustration for this piece is a copy of a drawing I did in oil pastels in 1992.  The original was completed in A3 size as a gift for a big fan of this lady.

'Yes darling ... I'll be anything you want me to be ... I'm an actress.'

The lady in question is British actress Joan Collins.  The copy is a black and white version of the original.  In those days a digital camera and pc would not have been to hand, but I did at least manage a photocopy.

Contrary to my original intentions I have posted ‘Guardian Angels’ into a competition on an international web-based writing site.  Simply because there are no restrictions I have it linked here in my short stories.

‘Windows of Opportunity’ has gone to a top British writing magazine so I’ll have to await the official clearance before I can post it anywhere else.

In the last three days I’ve penned a poem a day.  ‘Noises in the Wind’ which is about a crew of mutineers.  ‘The Enemy Within’ is my take on the world of insurgents.  ‘Nymphet‘ is my latest which touches on the sensitive subject of a man falling for a beautiful but under-age girl.

I have as always got a short story underway.  ‘One Man’s Mission’ takes a walk into the world of terrorism.  Obviously a careful, calculated walk.

Chapter 2 of my novel is taking longer than I expected to make progress.  This is mainly due to working with a fictional lead character who will be experiencing some episodes from my own life.  Fortunately for both me and any reader there will be some fictional scenarios mixed in too.  If I get the job done right then nobody should be able to spot the real from the imagined.

In an effort to give me a boost back into the tale I’m considering two or three excerpts, just as I did with Chapter 1.  I feel sure the idea will work because I’ve already discovered that writing a story idea as a poem actually helps me to focus on keeping the story tight.  Time will tell.