My  updates on here are pretty much non-existent. It’s not because I’m not writing, because I am (more than ever). It’s just because I don’t feel ready to share anything yet, since I don’t want to upload the start of a longer story when I’m not happy with where it’s going yet. I have two stories that I’m working on. The Broken Pocket Watch, which is nearly finished. I’m about 10000 words away from the end and have near enough every scene mapped out.

The other story is untitled, but currently saved as Forsaken on my laptop. It’s the one I’m putting my main focus on at the moment, I’m just under 12500 words on it. I have an idea of where it’s going, but it’s constantly changing as I write. I think that’s a good thing. I’m writing most days, and feeling good about the results.

I want to update this blog more often, so I’ve decided to challenge myself, in a way. I want to write 2500 words a week and read one book a week. Every Monday I will write a post about whether I hit these targets or not. I decided this last Monday, and managed to achieve it this week.

I only wrote on four days this week, due to late finishes at work. I didn’t think I’d gotten anywhere near 2500 words to be honest, but after I’d finished I found I was pretty close to 3000. I’m really happy with that, since it’s not taking that long. I’m playing music, and just writing. I’m trying to write solidly for the whole album, though I do get distracted often.

I’m just leaving the beginning stages of Forsaken, which is where I always start to feel nervous. For the first 10000 words I feel like the words just flow out so easily. Once I hit that mark, things seem to slow and the ideas stop. I always feel that if I can get passed 15000 words I’m going to make it to the end of the story. I know where some future scenes take place, but getting there seems to be turning into a struggle. I hope I get through this, since I’m really happy with the story so far.

The Trial by Franz Kafka was the book this week. It is one of the strangest and most confusing books I’ve ever read. I didn’t know much about it before I started, but had heard the term Kafkaesque used often and wanted to see where this came from. I chose The Trial simply because it was the only book of his I’d heard of. I’ve since looked into other stories by Kafka and will be looking to read them soon.

The whole story is set in a dreamlike world. Things feel familiar, although they are presented in alien ways. K, the protagonist, has been arrested yet is still allowed to go to work and move around freely. The freedom is a complete illusion though, as he slowly gets bogged down by his unknown case. He never finds out what he is accused of, and neither does the reader. The court is held in an apartment building, with the offices taking up the dark and dingy attics. Every one he meets seems to be connected to the court, from the painter he seeks advice from to the priest who knows about K’s case, despite having never met him before. The twisted story is full of striking scenes and is definitely going to stay with me for a long time.

I could probably write an entire post just about my thoughts on it, but I won’t. I’m going to think about it more, and let it settle in my mind.

The next book I’m going to read is, Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman. A recent book, that I bought at a talk Gaiman did in London. He read out a chapter and spoke about the reasons for writing it. I really enjoyed the talk, and hope the book proves to be as good as some of his earlier novels.

Thanks for reading,


About ashleymanningwriter

Young Adult Fiction writer. Horror and fantasy blended together.
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