Target Acquired!

I didn’t share my last article much. It was a rant really. An emotional outburst and not really worth sharing. However, it inspired be to have a chat with my girlfriend and start a GoFundMe campaign to help us get our own place.

It occurred to me that one of the reasons I had been feeling down lately was that I missed my family in Wales. In particular my nieces, Imogen and Bethany. They’re my sister’s girls. I came back to the UK to be with them and be a part of their lives again, which I’m not doing. I’m in Dalton, they’re in Kidwelly. So the new plan is to save up for a place in either Kidwelly or Carmarthen.

We already sort of had this plan, but we were aiming for a place in Dalton together, my girlfriend and I. The place we were sort of aiming for was rented to someone, which is only right because we have not saved up for it yet, but it was still a little disappointing. It was also disappointing to discover that the money that I thought we did have saved up towards our own place had vanished to pay a credit card bill.

There’s still a big chunk, £500 last time I checked, that needs to be paid off. We both agreed that we should pay this off before saving up for anything else. As I’ve already said in the GoFundMe campaign description, we’ll be saving too. I don’t expect to get something for nothing. In fact, we might end up reaching the goal all on our own. Really the GoFundMe page is a declaration of my intent to the universe. If no-one helps it won’t really matter, at least I’ve put it out there. It gives me a target I really want to hit.

Having a goal will help keep me motivated to write as I continue to explore ways to make money doing it, working on short stories for magazines and other publications, adding to and promoting Hermes925, and building on the progress I’ve already made. I like working at the Whitewater Hotel, and I’m clearly doing well and impressing people. I have no intention of being sucked into a career there.  My writing is my career, the part-time job is just to help support me while I write, and help me save up.

The advantage of saving up slowly would be that I’ll have more time to hone my craft and more time to build up passive income sources. With luck, by the time I’ve saved up the £5000 minimum I’m aiming for, I’ll be able to rely on my writing to provide us with an income, and any extra savings will help support us while Laura looks for work.

We could also thoroughly research the job market and rental properties in advance so that when the time comes to move we’ll have both a great rental property and work lined up when we get there.  If we do get help and manage to do it all with money left over, the remainder will be reinvested toward our next goal. The next goal will probably be some sort of self-published anthology working in collaboration with the writers I’ve made contact with on Facebook and other social media sources.

I have already found that writing is coming easier having had this mini-revelation. In addition to this article, and the GoFundMe campaign, I’ve also finally written the Hermes update that I haven’t been able to get out on paper for weeks. You can check it out here: 13/14 Infestation.

It can be a little frustrating finding Hermes pictures. I like to have a picture for each update. It looks prettier on the website and Facebook that way. The problem is that I can’t find the pictures I want because the scenarios I want to illustrate don’t exist yet. This time I was looking for a Ratkin that looked like it was diseased, plagued or blighted. It’s hard enough finding pictures of rat-men that look right, nevermind ones that look sick.

I tried looking for a picture of a Ratkin fighting a Nymph again. Once more finding a picture of a giant bug fighting a bi-pedal rat was impossible. I even tried just finding an image of the ‘library’ described in the update, but it’s hard to find a picture of a library, study or desk that looks like it was made by evolved rats from materials found on a spacecraft, in a room tunnelled out of mycelial foam insulation. I setteld for this one, but it doesn’t really do the job.

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That book doesn’t look like rats made it. They will have had 3D printed books supplied by the AI, but I doubt the Ratkin’s primitive attempts to reverse engineer the craft of bookmaking would have such classic fantasy results. I feel like the scrolls would more likely be a papyrus-like substance made from the roots of plants. The Tunneler Ratkin live mostly in the bulkheads of the ship, so they would only have easy access to plants that have grown tendrils between the panels. And perhaps some that have taken root in the insulation burrows. Certainly nothing very tree/wood like. The desk itself is wrong, as is the weapon that would probably be made from chipped ‘scrap’ or crude iron.

The Tunneler Ratkin live mostly in the bulkheads of the ship, so they would only have easy access to plants that have grown tendrils between the panels. And perhaps some that have taken root in the insulation burrows. Certainly nothing very tree/wood like. The desk itself is wrong, as is the weapon that would probably be made from chipped ‘scrap’ or crude iron.

The deeper I go into the story, the more I need to find an artist willing to collaborate with me. Not only by creating original work inspired by each entry, but by co-administrating the Hermes925 pages on Facebook and Patreon, and help me with marketing and promotion. Such an artist would be entitled to a share of any profits. There’s only going to be any profit if everyone involved in the project works their arses off to make sure the project is successful.

If you’re interested in collaboration, please contact me. If you’d like to help my girlfriend and I get our own place and start a new life together, please contribute to the GoFundMe campaign. If you’d rather support my writing career by paying just a little each month, and in return, getting notified when I write anything, check out my Patreon Page. You can also subscribe (below) or donate via paypal.

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Thanks for reading, sharing and subscribing. Have a great day 🙂

First Week at Whitewater

Despite my earlier concerns I’m enjoying working a second job at the Whitewater Hotel. I still feel like I’m desperately behind on my writing, but I’ll just have to prioritise, reorganise, and make good use of the time I’m not working at the hotel.

I’ve already met several interesting characters. One of whom we’ll call “Mr. Pubb”, on the off-chance that he’ll read this and not find it at least a little bit amusing. He’s a very smart man, works for a large pharmaceutical firm, and is used to talking to people that he’s intellectually superior too. He’s clearly used to reading people easily too. I’ve seen Mr Pubb guess, correctly, several interesting facts about my new coworkers. He tried to do the same to me, but he was wrong.

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Of course, each time he did I felt the need to correct him, so he knows a lot about me too. However, this worked in my favour as he found travelling engineers, designers, and other smart people to talk too. Each time Mr Pubb saw me he’d introduce me, some of the details of which I would once more feel compelled to correct. Either way, there are now a few more people that know I’m a Sci-Fi writer. One of the people Mr Pubb introduced me too I would be very interested in talking to again. We’ll see if he’s still in the hotel tonight, or if he contacts me.

I unfortunately also discovered that my dress shoes are not suitable for the job. In my first week I worked Thursday 3-11pm, Friday 7-11am and 6-11pm, and then Saturday 7am-3pm. Thankfully they let me stay in a spare room overnight, so I didn’t have to try and get the bus back home and still get there early the next day. However, by about 11am on Saturday my feet were hurting so badly I couldn’t think straight. I was limping with both feet. If there was going to be a moment when I learned to levitate, that would have been the ideal time.

I whined about it on facebook and got some great responses, including several useful foot exercises which allowed me to sleep that night. It was also repeatedly recommended that I get better shoes and much better inserts than the gel insoles I’m using now. To that end, I’ve already started a GoFundMe campaign to raise the mere £75 I need to get myself properly equipped for the job and prevent having to feel that agonising pain again. I’m not exaggerating. By my final hour of my shift, I was physically shaking from the pain. I put my feet up as soon as I could, but I still had to wait 45 minutes for the bus!

Speaking of buses, last night I worked from 6-11pm, and I don’t start today until 6pm again. However, I got done with work early and practically ran to catch a bus that I thought would be there at 10:45. I was wrong, but I sort of suspected I was. I remembered seeing a two hour gap between the return buses on the timetable, but I was nevertheless hopeful. It wasn’t a terribly cold night, but it was dark and by the time the bus almost drove right passed me (I had to wave my Lego Darth Vader Minifig light and my phone) I was feeling a chill.

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What I didn’t know at all was that, instead of taking a route that would stop only 3 minutes from my Grandparent’s house (where I currently live), the closest it would come was a 15 minute walk. As I said it was dark, and when it started down a road I didn’t recognise, I wasn’t absolutely sure. Until I saw a landmark that I know comes after my regular stop. Luckily the bus driver made an unscheduled stop for me, only about ten minutes from home, but uphill, and I’m still wearing my crippling dress shoes. Luckily my feet weren’t hurting yet, but it was only a 4½ hour shift.

With the adjustment to the new scheduling, I didn’t get around to writing Hermes925 last month, and I was still shattered on Sunday. Though I still managed to update The City of Gate, it took me all day. For those that don’t know, The City of Gate is an RP group I run on Facebook. Do you like games like D&D or Vampire: The Masquerade? Would you like to control a character within a fantasy narrative? No rules, no dice, just story. Anything goes as long as you keep the story going. Bad things happen if you don’t make one comment per week, or if your character does something fatally stupid.

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I need to keep up with Hermes925, it’s a lot of fun to write at moment, though it is taking it’s time to come through. Every word seems to be taking great effort right now, not just writing new ones, but polishing up the older entries. There’s no great hurry on this, but I want to make sure they’re ready before they’re published elsewhere. The Ubiquicity story isn’t flowing easily right now either. However, I need to keep up with both.

Like I may have mentioned, Hermes925 is getting serialised in a pulp-fiction mag style e-zine called Diversions from Drudgery. The first issue is coming out next month. I will be sure to include a link on this website as soon as it’s available. There will no doubt be a blog article also.

Still, I wish I had the time to work on an audio version, perhaps even a YouTube video version, of Hermes925 for my friends that are blind or have other problems reading. I good do some blog articles that way too. I have a much better microphone now, so videos shouldn’t be mumbly anymore. I just need time to come up with a better video solution. The PC that can handle our DVD quality mic doesn’t have a camera, and my face would be mostly concealed by pop-screen anyway.

I’d like an illustration, or perhaps animation. Original music would be good too. We’d each get a cut of any profit we’d make from our YouTube collaboration. Perhaps I’ll even set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise some starter cash for the project. I don’t have the time right now though, and I probably won’t until I have enough Patreon subscribers to be able to quit working a second job.

If you’re interested in seeing Hermes925 as a YouTube series complete with animation and a musical theme, please contribute to my Patreon campaign for now. If you can’t though, that’s okay. I’ll raise the money eventually by working at The Whitewater Hotel, and the money I’ll make for the ezine, but it will just take longer. I’m still going need those shoes though! 😉

I also plan to rewrite the ghost story that was recently rejected. Thanks to a lot of great feedback, I’ve decided to include the original story in a larger narrative. This is going to take a lot more research into police procedures, locations, engineering, etc. For now, the ghost story and the faery story I’m working on will both have to wait until I can afford the time.

Before I forget to mention it; The Whitewater Hotel is hiring! If you’re looking for work and live in south Cumbria, give them a call!

If you have some objection to Patreon.com of GoFundMe.com, but still want to help I will accept either one-off donations or one of the subscription options below, via Paypal.primary-sml_btn  preferred-sml_btn  premium-sml_btn posh-sml_btn preposterous-sml_btn

 

 

 

Thank you for reading, and have a great day 🙂