Confidence

Karibu Reader!

Have you ever experienced doubt? You get that question coming up through all the other noise bugging you and asking if you really are what you say you are, if you’re really doing what you think you’re meant to be doing.

When the little doubt I still possess creeps up on me, I have to do some serious ninja moves  to get back to writing and enjoying the process. I heard someone say something that inspired me to try and attack it from a different angle, PRACTICE.

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It is very easy to forget to be confident about the things you do sporadically.

Mapenzi!

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It’s your thing. Do what you wanna do.

Karibu Reader and Happy Father’s Day!

Toronto is finally warm and I find myself inexorably pulled outside basking in the sun.

As an author trying to offer entertainment to readers, I’m often baffled by the notion of trying to get fans. If I were to approach a random person (she’s a black woman like me) and ask her to purchase my book, what would I say to her? What exactly is she looking for in a story? A heroine who battles aliens? A dark handsome hero in whose arms she can rest safely? A challenging socio-economic situation that has been solved in the future using a solution currently unthought of? What does she want and how can I satisfy her?

That is a trap. Don’t ever succumb to the pressure of trying to sell your story to anyone. The beauty of art is that the audience falls in a spectrum (regardless of what genre you write) from those who love it and cannot live without it, to those who end up abhorring you, the writer, for coming up with such a story.

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I’m a big supporter of supporting black artists, whose work is often marginalized. Watch this and support.

Sorting through confusion

Karibu reader!

The weekend is upon us, what are your plans? I went to an all-girls secondary school where I studied music under a teacher we all loved. In trying to teach us what syncopation was she had us clapping to and memorizing this little ditty,

Syn-co-pa-tion
Teaches you to
Con-centrate.

This week has been a little crazy and ideas have been popping in and out of my head like the Higgs boson! I have literally had to keep a list of the ideas floating around with me so they could leave me alone so I can finish the short story I began last week. Problem is, they keep popping up at the most inopportune times making it difficult to concentrate on the one thing I should be working on. Ms. Hobday’s little rhyme did nothing to get me where I needed to be.

In my struggle I realized something that helped me find my story-telling center again. Sometimes our hearts and minds are tuned into that place where inspiration flows from, and we have to sit in it and allow it to infuse us. When it starts to swirl and get confusing, write your ideas down, write flash fiction, draw your idea, just let your creative ability reach for the thing that will get you out of the rut and back into the sunlight.

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Mapenzi, from me to you.

Rebels UNTIE!

Karibu reader!

I hate rules. Don’t you? I dislike being told what to do and sometimes have to check myself before I rebel simply because someone told me what to do. I never thought of myself as a rebel and still don’t regard myself as one, but try telling me what to do see what happens.

So when I came across all the different “RULES OF WRITING” being peddled on the internet,

Some ‘experts’ have decided that you cannot use the word SAID. As in, “Oh, look,” she said.

Others think that using doing words, adverbs that end in -ly is basically dooming yourself to writers’ purgatory. For example, “Oh, look,” she said, longingly.

And yet some others say, don’t tell me what they said, show me what they said. They mean “Oh, look,” she whimpered, gazing longingly at the dazzling bracelet in the window.

Enough.

All these rules are arbitrary and suggested by people who pretend to hold the keys to publishing and the money jars. Bad writers get paid gobs of money all the time and they break every single rule that was ever put in place by ‘experts’.

My advice? Just write what you want to read and those who love reading the same things will line up to read your books.

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Peace!

Finishing First

Karibu Reader!

How was your weekend? Cold? Sunny? I can barely remember mine!

As an author I get this question all the time, “Are your books out?”. Usually you have to temper your expectations when someone asks that question. They are not suggesting that they are about to buy your book, oh no! It is merely polite conversation they are trying to have to find out what you’re all about, or waiting till someone more interesting comes along.

My stories are still hanging about on my computer being edited, revised or held in waiting. That is no easy task. Everyone who writes would like to have their work available for public consumption so critics and fans alike would have something to say about their work. However, I have had to learn the art of patience for my own good and for the good of my audience. Nothing is quite as irritating as reading a story you know was not yet quite ready for publication.

Patience is a virtue that is hard to learn.

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Dreaming

Karibu!

I hope your week has gone swimmingly and that your anticipation for weekend proggie* is almost at its zenith.

An article I read this morning has absorbed me completely. I’m a fan of science fiction and I mostly write science fiction and fantasy. I write about the things I love. I’m constantly scouring the internet for cool and interesting things and contemplating their use for systems for the future. Take for instance all the research going into the different uses of graphene or what 4D printing can do for the development of a smarter World or how people feel about replacing their bodies of flesh with mechanical smart machines.

All this stuff I love bleeds into my writing because I love them. My mind finds ways to grapple with these subjects while I’m asleep and if I allow myself to have a moment to think and mull over the dream, my stories take flight and soar!

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