I’ve decided to give my other projects a break because they were fighting for space in my brain with this long-standing project I’ve contemplated for some time now. It’s based on an old story I wrote when I was young. So far I’ve written about 8000 words. I decided to try using Scrivener this time and I’ve been finding it incredibly useful! Being able to have two panes open has sped up my work flow, and I love the little binder sidebar with all the folders and notes in it. I had looked at some other writing programs on Linux, and while they were attractive, the thing that bothered me was how restrictive they were with the layout and planning options. I like how I can rename everything to what I want in Scrivener, and the multi-pane option is very useful. If another kind of software offered those features on Linux then I’d be tempted to switch. There are some aspects of Scrivener (the version I’m using, anyway) that aren’t perfect because it’s a Linux port and since I got it for free, I can’t grumble.
My current project is going to be an opportunity to openly explore sexuality and romance without the constraints of reality. It’s entirely set in a fantasy world, and while it has some similarities to our world, I still have the freedom to do what I want. I think Urban Fantasy was a crutch for my laziness, and while I do enjoy writing in the genre, lately I feel I want to expand outwards into Horror and Dark Fantasy. There will be romance–there will always be romance–but it won’t be a Romance. I don’t feel I fit in or belong in the Romance genre. I want to write about violent, gross things which tend not to appeal to the average Romance reader. I want to explore the depths of darkness, and I feel Horror is the only genre willing to go there, so that’s what I’m going to do.
I have toyed with the idea of not seeking publication for this project, and I may never do. That’s not on the cards right now. If I change my mind, I guess I will have to seek a different publisher because I can’t see my current publisher accepting this one!
Another issue for me right now is the ‘thought police’ who exist inside my head on a purely imaginary basis but seem to try and stick their oars in whenever I try to express myself in my writing. I’m certain that every writer experiences this. I banished them by deciding to restrict my access to social media. My mother-in-law was saying the other week about an actress who refuses to use social media and after a long discussion with my wife, I realised that I wasn’t handcuffed to Twitter and I don’t have to use it if I don’t want to. So I’m not going to. I will pop on to answer my mail and respond to @s but that aside, is there really any need for me to be on there every single day? I know this is the major problem with all social media; it’s addictive. But the downside is I found it was affecting my mental health and I could see myself spiraling into depression again.
When you suffer with depression, the tiniest thing can affect your mood, and the last thing I needed was the overwhelming flood of anger, hatred and vitriol that stews on social media, fed into by a stream of hysterical people all tapping furiously on their keyboards in a bid to express their rage. Why would anyone subscribe to that? It’s like having a magazine all about hate, where people write in with their obnoxious opinions and articles are published about how best to argue with someone or 10 ways to show you despise someone. When I look at it like that, it seems totally bonkers.
The best medicine is to close the web browser and open the word processor.