Away With Thee, Laurels! I shall not sit upon’t!

I have mentioned a few times over the past few months how invigorating and inspiring I find it to keep my productivity up. Moving forward with current projects or planning the next one means I feel like I’m constantly in motion. Whatever this journey’s destination proves to be I shall have to wait and see, but in the mean time I’m certainly enjoying the ride.

I have mentioned already how I was lucky enough to be featured in Tuned to a Dead Channel earlier in the year: a sci-fi short-fiction anthology full of dystopian tales of struggle, hardship, hope and redemption (more on my publications page). It was amazing to have my first short story published and even more amazing to know that the anthology is doing well.

As well as this success, I have also completed my very first novel draft. I am hoping to release more details soon but for now I’ll just let you know that it has been sent off and I’m waiting feedback. Meep.

Time for a break, no? No!

My head’s in a great place and I find I can’t stop coming up with more ideas. When I heard Dagda Publishing were looking for submissions for their next science fiction anthology, this time based on the theme of ‘technology gone mad’ I thought, well, why not? It was next to impossible to not come up with an idea and I wrote a short story called Isaac Heights (a teaser of which can be read here) and sent it off.

I am thrilled to announce that Isaac Heights has made the cut. I am humbled, excited, grateful and, if anything, more motivated than ever.

The anthology, All Hail the New Flesh, will come out sometime early next year and I will be featured alongside many talented up-and-coming writers, two of whom are already worthy WordPress associates: the wonderful A. K. Hinchey and the inimitable Helena Hann Basquait AKA Jessica Bell. Do check out their blogs for fiction, fun, frolics and more.

So, what’s next? Well, I already have a lot planned for my next novel. I’ve started work on a character breakdown and have an idea for the premise and the plot. Oh, and I’ve put together a writing playlist full of music that will fit the tone of the story. One of the most important parts of approaching a new project! Next will be a plot breakdown and fine-tuning the narrative. I’m hoping to start writing in the new year, if not before. Watch this space for teasers, excerpts and, well, maybe just some idea about what it’s about as soon as I can.

A novel draft waiting on feedback, another short story published and a new project in the planning stages. That’s enough, right?

Apparently not.

A very good friend of mine, Dr. Anna Tarrant, suggested something that I had never previously considered before but now can’t shift from my head. I plan to acquire some graphics software and have a stab at a comic/graphic novel. This is a long-term goal as there is so much to learn. I know next to nothing about photoshop etc though I have liked to draw ever since I was old enough to hold a pencil and I figure even the professionals started somewhere, so what’s there to lose?

Another writer, horror writer M. J. Wesolowski (who’s fantastic debut novella, The Black Land, I reviewed here) was also kind enough to let me know about Spectral Press who are currently calling for submissions for a future project: an industrial horror anthology. Details here. Tell me that does leave your skin crawling with ideas? No deadline for this one but I’m not taking the risk of being complacent and hope to get something written next week.

This is what happens when you make connections, when you research your hobby, when you yearn to learn. People forward you things, point you in the right direction and you can’t help but make opportunities for yourself when you’re proactive.

Further to this, I want to thank all the amazing people that have stuck with this blog on the journey so far. You are all a big part of the reason I am where I am: the encouragement, the feedback and the feeling of journeying with companions, as well as all the advice and details of opportunities freely given, has been and will continue to be invaluable.

Let’s all check in this time next year and see where we are. Who wants to take some bets on what we can all achieve in a year? Do not rest on those laurels and you’ll be staggered what you can achieve.

And in that spirit, #FlashForFriday shall return this week with a short story inspired by one of these amazing pictures. Why not join in?

You can check out my contributions to #FlashForFriday so far on my short fiction page.

Have a great week all. Keep on truckin’ and keep on writing.

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16 Responses to Away With Thee, Laurels! I shall not sit upon’t!

  1. Dave says:

    With all that you do, and keeping up your great blog at the same time, you are an inspiration. Just wanted you to know …

  2. H. Ken Abell says:

    Awesome! Congratulations! And good luck with the graphic novel — if you have any luck with the software, let me know — I’ve got my shelved project that keeps nagging at me to get drawn at some point.

  3. What a terrific blog! You have an energy and an enthusiasm that is a great inspiration! 🙂

    Good luck with the novel for which you are awaiting feedback, and your next work-in-progress as well.

  4. How awesome, Jex! Congrats! Can I just have a little of that spectacular drive and energy of yours? You seem to have plenty so spare… 😜

    • Heehee sure thing! I’ll post out what I would use during the day if I didn’t have to work full time and send it by airmail 😀 a little warning though, it requires a lot of tea to keep it going 😉

  5. D. James Fortescue says:

    That is awesome news. Ultra-well done =D

  6. Jex, you’re so kicking ass. Keep it up and as you say, give those laurels a swift kick in the rump. Who needs ’em!? And I love the idea of the graphic novel. Hope to hear more about that soon. 🙂

    • Thanks so much Philip 😀 I figure as long as I’m enjoying myself there’s no stopping me 😀 I’m obviously hoping to continue getting places as I carry on, but my main priority is to just keep learning and keep moving forward 🙂

  7. Pingback: Looking Ahead – Here’s to 2014! | The Path – J. S. Collyer's Writing Blog

  8. Pingback: Stuff to Read, Stuff to Write, Stuff to Speculate Upon | The Path – J. S. Collyer's Writing Blog

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