Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Further Diary Scribbles

8.00am: Finally struggled out of bed.

8.15am: Woke up 15 year old son who'd fallen asleep on sofa. Threatened to kiss him if he didn't.

8.45am: Got dressed.

Spent rest of morning waiting for a phone call asking me to collect a friend from hospital.

1.00pm: Put cottage pie in oven for lunch

1.05pm: Friend texts to ask if I can collect her.

5.30pm: Get home.

8.30pm: Start blog.

8.35pm: Finish blog.

8.36pm: Long for an interesting life, then remember Chinese proverb - May you live in uninteresting times.

On plus side, did a lot of reading and line-learning today.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Diary of a Nobody

Tuesday 29th September

7.30am: Alarm goes off. I look out of the window and see a grey sky. Hate life. Go back to sleep.

8.15am: Wake up. Sky still grey. Go back to sleep.

8.30am: Wake up again. Grey sky, but stomach rumbling. Get up, get my pills and have breakfast and a cup of tea. Discover that Cliff and the Shadows have a new album out. Feel a little more cheerful.

9.30am: Shave myself. Feel better. Sky still grey.

10.00am: Second cup of tea, slowly waking up. Sky clearing. Looks like the sun may be making an effort to shine on me for a change.

10.15am: Start writing blog, faintest hint of sunshine breaking through the clouds.

10.23am: Finish blog. Check spelling and grammar. Looking forward to seeing kids at home-ed bowling. Haven't seen them since Saturday. Still feel like world's going to end, but more cheerful than at 7.30am.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy

Reading, writing and submitting. I've been busy these last two weeks.

I haven't done as much reading as I would like, but have discovered something through T.Anne's blog on passion.

I have had a torrid time reading two books by Iain M Banks (Feersum Endjin and Against A Dark Background), which is unusual as I usually enjoy them. The missing element is passion and despite Banks being a superb writer, it's the quality of the writing which shines through instead of the story and the characters. They are original and well written, but passionless. So thanks to T.Anne for the spark of enlightenment.

I've also been working on a few book/DVD reviews, one of which will be published soon, with three more in pipeline. The advantage of reviews is that they are relatively quick to do and can get published far more easily than a story. They are also good at getting your name out there to publishers and agents and providing they are in your own genre, suitable for putting on any query. Not only that, but they improve your writing skills as you have to summarise a story, which is something I find difficult with my own work.

The play rehearsals are going well and I'm getting my head around the character I'm performing as well as learning my lines...and there are a lot of them. But, it is the character I wanted to play above all others if only because he has a happy ending (and I could do with one of them at the moment).

Tonight it's to my writing group again as I'm not involved in the scene being rehearsed, but then the group get another month long break from me.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Lines, Lines, Lines

Thankfully I wasn't the only person to forget his lines last night, but it has reminded me of one thing: each person in a play is dependent on everyone else. If we get our lines wrong, the other person misses their cue.

We did last night's Act 1 run through without our scripts. It wasn't a disaster as most of the lines were remembered, but when it went wrong, it went hideously wrong. Even the director was laughing at some moments.

It is difficult to keep a straight face, when the woman you're meant to be bawling at, forgets her lines and then laughs. Try it.

The bright spots were the boys, who got their lines correct, as well as their actions...all seven lines.

Still, I have the next three rehearsals off as I'm not needed, so I'll have plenty of time to get my part right.

On an even more positive note, I will have another short story and another book review published soon. The short story will be out in December, whilst the review should be out by the middle of October.

Now to try and get some sleep.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Don't Laugh, Your Face Will Crack

I managed to get through last night's rehearsal without smiling once.

The boys were rehearsing as well and remembered their parts and some of their lines. They've got the whining off to a tee.

I wasn't meant to be rehearsing last night, but I had to take the boys, so I intended to learn my lines. Fat chance. Torvald didn't turn up, so I had to step and read his part, and as I was there, we had another run through of my first big scene with the leading lady.

All I have to do now is learn my lines for Monday, as we're doing the whole of Act 1 without scripts.


On another note, Sonia King is a performer who I've admired for a long time. She writes Christian songs and has done she was fourteen, way back in the 19(cough cough)'s. I've known her as a friend and co-worker and fellow christian since the late 80's.

If you want to sample her work you can go to her website. You can also hear samples of all her music. I recommend 'Together My Friend' on the New World album as it is my personal favourite of all her songs.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Part 2

Monday night's rehearsal was a blast and I couldn't stop smiling all the way through it.

The reason: I'm back on stage. I've been away from it for too long and I was just so happy to be back doing what I love. I also have two of my kids involved, one on stage and one wanting to see what goes on with a production.

It did make it a bit awkward when I was yelling at my co-star (all part of the script) and being generally horrible, nasty, evil, vicious, mean, cruel and rotten, but we got through it.

Tomorrow I have an evening off, but will have to take the two boys down for their rehearsal.

On another note, I have another story being published. Sadly it's in the very last issue of a magazine called Pantechnicon. They're having to close down due to hackers constantly knocking their site off the web. This last issue will be issued in December as a double header with another magazine called Theaker's Quarterly Fiction.

That makes two stories and a review inside 18 months. Wooohoooo, I've hit the big time...well, bigger time than I've had before.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Another Rehearsal

No, this isn't a complaint. I'M LOVING BEING ON STAGE AGAIN.

So much so, that I was smiling all the way through last night's rehearsal. A bit awkward really as the scene required me to be angry and manipulative.

The rest of my thoughts will come tomorrow in the sequel. Mainly because I am tired, but also because I haven't got my glasses on.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Taking Shape

We've been at rehearsals for a week now and I feel a little left out. Why? My character doesn't have much to do in the first half hour.

In one way that's good as I can see the build up to the main parts for me and get a feel for what I should be doing and how. I've already worked out that my first small appearance is of a man who is just checking on his situation with the new boss.

In the second part, I'm frustrated and anxious and a little worried, but also angry and bitter and seeking to protect myself at all costs. Not totally sure about the third and fourth ones, but I have an outline.

I'm also proud of my son's performance...but I would be. He and his friend did well, considering that they have been thrown in at the deep end. They only have a couple of small cameo's but they've taken to it well.

Roll on next week and more rehearsals.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Now the Kids Join In

Another rehearsal tonight. Only this time my 9 year old son and his friend will be taking part as well.

We needed two youngish boys and I just happen to have one. He's happy to be spending quality time with his dad and see what he gets up to. He's also looking forward to being on stage, having lots of people stare at him and admire idea where he get's that attribute from.

I have managed to learn a few more lines, but it's a long two header between myself and the leading lady with some longish parts for me alongside some quick back-and-forth dialogue.

Oh how I've missed this.

I've also submitted another book review to Hub magazine and am working on a third.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Post Rehearsal Analysis

Well that wasn't too bad.

I remembered my three lines...mostly...didn't trip over the chairs we were using for props and walls and almost got my actions correct. Not bad for a twenty second appearance.

I also think one of the cast is making a pass at me...with any luck.

Monday, September 07, 2009

A Doll's House - 1st Rehearsal

It's my first rehearsal for the play tonight.

No doubt I shall deliver my lines with the all the experience and aplomb of an experienced rabbit caught in the headlights of an oncoming train.


Friday, September 04, 2009

Much Better

I told you it would go away.

The sun is out, the sky is blueish with lots of clouds, but my is it windy. It's windier than the windiest day in windy city on the day of the curried beans festival.

My it's bracing.

Lots of music, lots of reading and the kids tomorrow.

Have a great weekend.

Thursday, September 03, 2009


Having a low day today. Still, it won't last forever. If only the sun was out, it would be easier.

Rest, sleep and a peaceful day.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

More Ooops....But Not Mine

Hertfordshire is having another one of those 'Every PC is going wrong' times. Three calls this morning. I barely have time to lounge around.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Diary extracts

28th August. Still clearing up the after effects of the spam, as well as dealing with my son's problems with his mother. Still, at least he will staying at a friend's overnight and has been able to stay with me for a week. Invited a friend out for dinner as she's having a rough time at home and with the hospital.

EDIT: friend couldn't make it as she is too tired. We'll go out tomorrow instead.

29th August. Went into town myself as the two eldest are in Royston with friends and the youngest doesn't want to go into town. GLORIOUS. Doing what I want for a change. Collected youngest from his mum's at 10am then spent the day with him and his friend. Took, mum, aunt and the boys out for lunch. Youngest falls asleep on my bed for an hour, before I drop him off, go up to Royston, take my friend out, collect eldest boys and return them to their mum's. Friend much better, but still ****** off with hospital.

30th August. WHAT'S THAT NOISE! Oh, that's silence.

31st August. Bank Holiday in UK, more rest and recovery. Writer's group this evening, my last for a few weeks as I start play rehearsals next week.

1st September. Back to work. Writing, sending emails, making phone calls, fixing PCs...bliss.