April Insecure Writer’s Support Group

The Insecure Writer's Support Group image of a lighthouse

The first Wednesday of every month is Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Welcome.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: On IWSG day, post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time – and return comments. This group is all about connecting!

IWSG

Thanks to the following co-hosts for the April 6th posting: Joylene Nowell Butler, Jemima Pett, Patricia Josephine, Louise – Fundy Blue, and Kim Lajevardi.

First Quarter Review

This month’s optional question is about audiobook production. I’m looking forward to reading others’ responses, but have nothing I can add myself (yet). Instead, I shall offer a few reflections on my year so far, and wish you all well in whatever endeavours come your way.

Book with blue cover, closed, on a pale wood surface, with white large headphones and cord on top of the book
Image from Pixabay

2022 has been a strange year already.

Living-wise, the pandemic goes on. I was diagnosed with ADHD in January, and have been adapting to that. Cost of living is up, war has returned to Europe, and climate-change-driven extreme weather events continue to plague Australia.

Writing-wise, I’ve had at least six publications so far (check out the links here), with more to come—including the third and final episode in my cryptozoologist series with Etherea Magazine. But the rejections keep coming all the same.

I admit, I do wish I could add On Solar Winds to my ‘published’ list, but, alas, I am still searching for an agent for my YA space opera. I’ve a wonderful new critique partner who also writes YA speculative fiction, so we’ve been beta reading for each other. It’s always good to have fresh eyes on a piece that you haven’t touched in a while. In addition, working on these other stories has been great fun, and I’m growing as a writer all the time.

Working Towards…

Speaking of growth and knowledge, I’ve been following through Ursula K. Le Guin’s Steering the Craft book with fellow Aussie authors. Le Guin certainly knew how to pick apart the minutiae of writing, and I love her sometimes tart wisdom. I have enjoyed the challenging exercises within her book as well.

(Check out this excellent review of Steering the Craft if you’d like to know more.)

I will be attending the Flights of Foundry convention this coming weekend. FoF is an online, pay-as-you-like (including free) convention that runs non-stop from April 8-10th. People can thus join from anywhere int he world, at any time. I’m particularly interested in a workshop on politics and world building in SFF, as well as presentations on decolonising work, and another on non-linear, non-Western narratives. Check out the schedule here (I’m not affiliated).

Next week I’m also starting a 4-session course with Clarion West on writing for speculative and literary markets, and later have some excellent workshops to look forward to with SmokeLong Quarterly, who know all about flash fiction!

I do believe that learning should be lifelong… and in writing, that is no different.

Two hands with white-appearing skin typing on a Mac keyboard, white sleeves visible
Image by Kaitlyn Baker at Unsplash

What I’ve been reading, etc…

My reading has been skewed towards YA sci-fi this year. The most recent titles include Off-Planet by Aileen Erin; A Confusion of Princes by Garth Nix; The Cerulean by Amy Ewing; Crownchasers by Rebecca Coffindaffer; and Across the Universe by Beth Revis. I’m rubbish at remembering to write reviews, but GoodReads and elsewhere have plenty. I’d recommend all the titles, if that helps.

I also devoured Piranesi by Susannah Clarke, a stunningly beautiful narrative, and Smart Ovens for Lonely People by Elizabeth Tan, a Perth-based short story writer whose second collection blew me away. I first borrowed it from the library, and within two stories knew I had to buy the book for myself.

Have you ever felt like that with a library book? Which one(s)? Do share in the comments!

Sorting table with stacks of books; more books on open shelving in background
Image by DNB

When I eventually publish my book-length projects, I will look into audiobook format as well. It’s such a covenient way to ‘read’ a book—especially on long commutes, or when cooking dinner! As a volunteer narrator for the AntipodeanSF Radio Show, I have learned a little about reading aloud, proper mic equipment, etc. But I don’t know if I would narrate my own book.

Then again, I’ve been listening to Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman, Volume II, narrated by Neil himself. It’s an amazing production with multiple voice talents—and lots of content warnings. Neil’s narration brings authenticity and tension to the narrative. I love it.

What have you been reading, listening to, and watching recently? I’d love to hear about it in the comments.

In the meantime, I leave you with a picture of my cat, Loki. Just because.

Thanks for visiting.

Do check out the blogs of our other IWSG members, over at this link, and see you next month for another Insecure Writer’s Support Group blog hop.

Brown and black muggy cat sitting on a brightly coloured cushion,looking at the camera
Image by E. Gill
Header image: red banksia flowers via PxFuel

6 thoughts on “April Insecure Writer’s Support Group

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