Thursday, 19 March 2009


Grammar is the bane of my writing/life. I'm absolutely rubbish at it and it's so frustrating. People say they find it hard to read my book because the correct grammar isn't being used. I feel it's really holding me back and slowing me down. I've bought a couple of books on the subject some of it i understand and the rest might as well be in Japanese i just don't get it. First i didn't have enough commas then i had too many arrrrgggghhhh. I'd like to get some software for the computer but i can't afford it. I feel like I'm failing my story i wish i could understand.

Wednesday, 18 March 2009


I actually managed to do a bit of editing today and get a few more chapters typed up and put on authonomy. Hopefully I'll be in the mood to do some more tomorrow. I need to crack on with it. I still have typos and grammar mistakes no matter how hard I try. I wish there was a computer chip they could store in my head that would tell me where to put commas, colons etc. There's just not enough time in the day to do everything I want. I want to get the mass editing done, read my grammar/punctuation books, and read my fiction books I have 20 that I want to read stuck on my bookshelf. If only I could read and write faster.

Tuesday, 17 March 2009


Writing my book is something I really enjoy. The only problem is due to my depression sometimes I just can't be bothered. I have to confess I haven't written anything for Megan's thirty for a couple of weeks. I really want to crack on and get the book finished but I just struggle. The medication I'm on causes me to be very lethargic which means I'm constantly battling with that and my need to write. I find it so frustrating and wish sometimes I could just switch it off. But I can't really use this as an excuse. Not when so many authors that have gone before me who had allegedly had depression have done so well. A few names of authors/writers who are supposed to have had depression are Hans Christian Anderson, Charles Dickens, Ernest Hemingway, John Keats, Mary Shelley, and Mark Twain. Now that's quite a list of talented writers I wish I knew their secret of writing well with depression. Apparently a lot of us artistic types have depression it's not just us writers either. Artists, actors, singers, seem to have depression drawn to them. As I have said my depression encouraged me to write I wonder if this has been the case for other authors. Did depression cause them to write or did they get depression after becoming an author?

I assure you all that even though Megan's thirty does include depression it is not a depressing story. It's a tale of over coming depression against the odds.
So I should really get over this lazyitis and get back to it shouldn't I?

Monday, 16 March 2009

Writing aids

No Matter how good you are at writing you always need a little help. I have a few things that aid my writing the first being books. At the moment I'm currently reading Will write for shoes and English grammar workbook for dummies. I've also bought but not got round to reading yet Grammatically correct, See Jane write, A novel in a year, and Wannabe a writer?.
The second thing that aids my writing is the Internet. There are so many useful sites to help writers.,10233,532364_536842,00.html

Other things I find useful are character charts. I find writing in detail about a character helps to develop them in your book.
I also carry round a note book to jot down any ideas or thoughts i have that i could include in my book or a future book. As i said it's amazing what you can hear when your out and about in shops etc. You can't always remember everything so jotting them down as you think of them or hear them is a great help.

I know I keep banging on about it but the biggest aid I've had so far is being a part of authonomy. All the authors on there are so kind and helpful you really can learn a lot about writing as well as getting to read lots of great books. Check it out on my list of links.

Sunday, 15 March 2009


I've so far written a draft copy of Megan's thirty which is over 54,000 words. Now it's a case of going back and editing the whole thing which I'm not a big fan of. Every time I think I have finished editing a chapter I find something else i can change. My book is on a site called autonomy People are really helpful on there with suggestions and advice it's just there's always another suggestion which i find myself agreeing with which mean's I'm no closer to finishing. What I'm struggling with at the moment is grammar, repeating myself, and people aren't too keen with my first chapter. They say once they get through the first chapter that they really get into the story and enjoy it, so it looks like I'll have to totally rework it.
Despite of this I've had a lot of positive comments about Megan's thirty on authonomy here are a few of them:

"The chapter reads well and I get into Megan's head straightaway, which makes me want to care for her and find out what is happening. Your story has a beating heart and a good pace. I like the idea of the 30 things".

"Hello Melissa,

You've been on my watchlist for a long time and I've only got around to reading, sorry. I like your story, and would buy it, if published. I'm no good at criticism so I won't do it but I think backing a book says a lot about how a reader feels about a story.
Good Luck!"

"Hi Melissa

You are one witty writer. Your writing has a lot of energy, Megan comes across as kind of a stream of consciousness, full of ideas and thoughts."
Kerry Fisher

"I can see from others comments that you've had a lot of rewrites. And I have to say that whatever you did worked. I was immediately there where I think you intended me to be and I really started to care about your MC. I think that the hardest thing to do is to balance the present and past working in your story. I have struggled with the very same thing in my tale. But you my friend have handled it beautifully.


Rachel May

I'D recommend Authonomy as it can only help to improve a new writers chance of ever being published. Just don't expect to write your first book quickly.

Saturday, 14 March 2009

What inspires me to write

I've always enjoyed writing stories ever since primary school when i wrote my first story about myself and Kylie Minogue going to the zoo. Every night before I would go to sleep I'd make a story up in my head; when i was younger it would be about me becoming a pop star but now it's more me becoming a millionaire, getting married, and having kids. My imagination has always been my best quality.

I have a lot of ideas of books I'd love to write I get inspiration from all over the place. Authors that inspire me are Marian Keyes, Sophie Kinsella, Ceceilia Ahern, and Lauren Weisberger amongst others. Marian Keyes has to be my favourite I love the way she can mix comedy with real life issues like depression. The way she builds her characters is amazing. The Walsh family are included in many of her books like Anybody out there and Watermelon. All of the Walsh characters are well developed, you can really relate to them. Marian inspires me to make my characters as good as hers. She truly is a genius.

The world itself is a big inspiration. Friends characters I believe can always be found in any book. In Megan's thirty I use aspects of my friends and family but only the funny parts of their character or what I find funny anyway.
I sometimes eaves drop on peoples conversations you can hear some interesting stories on buses, in cafes, at the theatre and especially at the shops. Whilst in Matalan the other day I heard a story of a manager throwing a coat hanger at one of his employees head. Real life stuff can really make fiction funnier.

Anything can inspire me to write like TV, films, magazines,and other books. As for what inspired me to start writing a book at the age of twenty seven well I've had depression and anxiety for a few years now and writing is like an outlet for me. Due to my illness I can't work so it gives me something to focus on. It's something that gives me a sense of achievement. In a way I have depression to thank for my new found career choice. If I never had depression I may never have worked out what I wanted to be. Depression is what inspired me to be a writer, strange but true.

Friday, 13 March 2009

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Thursday, 12 March 2009

Megan's thirty

The front cover of Megan's thirty was photographed and supplied by Jenni Grimshaw. Thanks hun xx

OK this is my very first blog and I have no idea what I'm doing so please bare with me. I'll be using this blog mainly to talk about my book Megan's thirty but I'll also comment on current events as and when I feel like it.

I started writing my first book Megan's thirty in September 2008. The genre I write in is Chick Lit. Here is a short description of what the book is about:

Desperately missing Hayden and in a deep depression Megan embarks on the journey of her life but will thirty things lead her back to happiness.

What more could a girl with a handsome fiancee and a planned Christmas trip to New York ask for. Twenty eight year old teaching assistant Megan Parker is the happiest girl alive that is until a devastating tragedy strikes that takes her life down a deep spiralling path of depression. Is there any way back to happiness for Megan. With the help of her friends can Megan’s list of thirty things really change her life? One year, thirty things Megan’s thirty.

You can read my book and make comments at

Authonomy is a website I stumbled across a month or two ago. It's somewhere for aspiring authors to post their books and have them reviewed by other authors who can offer you advice and tips to help you improve your book. The site is run by Harper Collins and they give people a chance to get noticed through a chart system. If your book gets noticed by HC you could get added to the editors desk. Where the people at HC will take a look at your book and comment. There's even a chance you may get published with them. This has happened to three lucky people on the site recently.

I shall write more about Megan's thirty when my brain is working properly. xx