Welcome to the blog formerly known as The Life Of Writing

Monday, 29 July 2013

Weekly Writing - Energy... Or Lack There Of

Who stole all my energy?

Was it you?

Or was it you? Yeah I see you there trying to hide. Give me back my energy!

That is my way of saying I haven't done a lot of writing this week.

I think the heat, my hay fever and my diabetes have all got together and plotted against me and my energy.

Maybe it was the thunder and lightning earlier - it may bring Frankenstein's Monster to life but it doesn't seem to do the same for me.

But enough babbling from me.

Here are some links from people who are more disciplined than me (and probably have their energy in storage or something in case of emergencies).

5 Ways To Write A Killer Plot Twist - Wordplay

25 Things To Know About Your Story's Stakes and Writers: You Might Be Doing It Wrong If... - Terrible Minds

Til next week... once I've recharged my batteries

Friday, 26 July 2013

Creatively Speaking: A Change Of Purpose

I don't know whether this really counts as a 'change of purpose' but I couldn't think of anything else to call this post so I'm going to roll with it.

So in this week's post I'll show you how I 'repurposed' a ring. I was given a ring - I suppose it was a cocktail ring given the size of it - but the ring was even too big to fit on my thumb (me being old skinny fingers!).

But after a bit of a struggle I managed to pull the ring off the setting... if that's what it is called.

That was really the hardest part of this DIY - after that everything was fairly easy.

I stuck a pendant back on to what had become a pendant.

Pendant backs

Back of 'pendant'

To stick the pendant back on I used G-S Hypo Cement.

You have to be really careful with this stuff - it's strong, it smells and the only way I can think to describe how the lid goes on is it's like threading a pin into a syringe. I would take a photo but not only would the glue start coming out, but the top of my tube is a bit of a mess... the glue tried to escape (and then getting the lid off again was a lot of fun!).

Once it was dry like in the photos above I just added an old chain and voila...
...where once there was a ring there is now a necklace.

Monday, 22 July 2013

Weekly Writing - A Quick Non Update

I haven't really got anything to report this week but I wanted to post to try and get me in tot he habit of posting on this blog on Mondays.

Like I said there isn't much to report. I feel like a lot of my creative output e.g. writing, drawing, is being hampered by the fact that my desk is overall flowing with crap. Sewing and hat destruction on the other hand have not been hampered by this.

I've been 'meaning' to sort it out since last summer, when I wanted to get it cleared in time for NaNoWriMo 2013.


Oops - but I'm trying to get it sorted because the desk is covered in books and my art supplies are dotted around the rest of the room, where they are more difficult to get at.

I intend to do a before and after post once it is sorted... but I'm a little ashamed to show you the before shot right now.

Til next week... or Friday if you decide to tune in then as well.

Friday, 19 July 2013

How To Almost Destroy A Hat

Yes, you read the title right... I almost destroyed a hat. I was trying to make it a better shape and almost ruined it in the process.

I decided that rather than the same purple baseball cap I've been wearing for almost the last decade this summer I would try something a little different. I decided on a straw trilby but got a cheap one as I wasn't sure if it would actually suit me... and trying to work things like that out in the actual shop is difficult - especially when you have to wander around trying to find a mirror.

But anyway here is the hat...

This was actually after I had almost ruined it. Let me explain.

When I first got it the brim was floppier than you see in the photo. I tried reshaping it using steam and hot water etc. but it didn't really shape it as much as I had hoped.

Then after much fiddling I discovered where the plastic 'string' running around the brim was joined and promptly broke it (as in I broke the join apart).

I tried melting it back together and only succeeded in ruining a couple of small alligator clips I was using to hold the plastic together.

I the end I used a combination of sewing thread and PVA glue to fasten it back together, as you may be able to see in this photo...

How NOT to reshape a hat

So after that I redecorated it by changing the band. I sifted through my ribbon collection and came up with an old denim belt and some lace.

Which I then sewed together and created a band...

And then I simply put it on the hat and tacked it over the top of the old band.


And now for a bit of modelling...

Excuse the sunglasses indoors but as we established last week I can't take a regular photo without my eyes ending up closed. So the options are: miserable, stupid or I have to cover my eyes with sunglasses.

What almost-disastrous-DIYs-but-it-turned-out-well-in-the-end have you had?

Monday, 15 July 2013

Weekly Writing - The Return

Welcome to Weekly Writing - earlier or later than previously advertised, depending on your point of view.

Since I revamped this blog, making it 'The Creative Life' rather than 'The Life of Writing' I decided to move my Weekly Writing posts to Mondays and have a new weekly post - Creatively Speaking - on Fridays.

Regular readers will have noticed that the Creatively Speaking posts have quickly taken the place of Weekly Writing. But the move to Mondays for Weekly Writing has been slow.

This is actually the second week that I have meant to start Weekly Writing on a Monday... I forgot last week - oops!

And until I settle in to this new routine Monday posts might be a bit hit and miss - bear with me.

But while I get used to this new regime here are a couple of links to keep you occupied until Friday... or Monday... depending on which posts you are interested in.

That Second Look At Your First Draft - Blood-Red Pencil

Hell With What Sells - Terrible Minds

Friday, 12 July 2013

Creatively Speaking - More Cosplay & Pulling Stupid Faces

As I promised last week here is the post about my costume from the Birmingham MCM earlier this year.

Madness Has Returned - originally posted 15/03/2013 on The Random Thoughts Of Chippy

My Alice costume is complete!

Last week I posted photos of my vorpal blade and other bits and pieces. This week I bring you photos of the actual costume.

Now obviously I haven't done my hair and make-up like Alice in these photos. Hopefully on the day I will get some photos of the full effect.

Please excuse the stupid face I'm pulling in the first photo... it is impossible for me to have a photo taken of me looking normal. If I try for normal my eyes seem to weld themselves shut in every photo. So it's either stupid face or miserable as hell! I went for the first option as you can see. And please ignore all the crap in the background.

Mission complete! :)

I did write a post about the actual event and as I mention in that post my sister took more photos than me which you can check out on her blog The Novice Cosplayer.

Friday, 5 July 2013

Creatively Speaking - Cosplay & Papier Mache

For the first 'creative' post of my redesigned blog I have decided to repost something that was originally posted on my other blog. it was posted back in March so needless to say the Birmingham MCM is no longer in just over a week's time.

So here we are:

The Evolution Of A Vorpal Blade - originally posted 08/03/2013 on The Random Thoughts Of Chippy

There's just over a week to go until the Birmingham MCM and it is update time cosplay wise.


All I've really got to do now to complete my Alice costume is make the bow for the back of my apron and finish putting my buckles on elastic for the boots.

So today I thought I'd show you how my vorpal blade evolved from some foam board, newspaper and glue in to the finished article.

Stage 1

Stage 2

It appears that my phone doesn't like my duvet cover!
Stage 3

Blogger decided it wanted this photo portrait instead of landscape
Stage 4

Blogger didn't like the orientation of this one either
So as you can see from this sideways photo my pendant, vorpal blade and the skull for the middle of my bow are all complete. All made with a mixture of foam board, cardboard, newspaper, glue, acrylic paint and on the blade/handle permanent marker. The pattern on the handle of the knife isn't as vibrant as I'd like - for some reason the glue made it fade... but it didn't on the blade itself - weird!

Hopefully this time next week I should have the full costume finished... if not I'm in trouble!

Stay tuned next week for the repost of my actual costume - yes I completed it in time

Monday, 1 July 2013

NaNoWriMo Countdown

Another month has come and gone so it is time to tell you that there are now only

123 DAYS

until the beginning of NaNoWriMo 2013.

Although to be honest I don't think I will be officially taking part this year. I think I'm going to use the time to edit my first draft of my Nano 2010... unless of course a novel idea takes root in my head that just has to be written.


...to the blog formerly known as The Life Of Writing.

Regulars may notice the changes around here already... non-regulars will not.

As I mentioned in my post on Friday I made the decision last week to reinvent this blog... kind of.

Basically I am expanding the subject of this blog from just writing so it includes more of the things I get up to creatively.

I'm not 100% sure how this will effect weekly posts. For the time being I think I will stick to a Friday post like it has been while I settle in. Eventually I think I'll end up with a weekly post that catches up on my writing and then a weekly post to do with any creative pursuits I have taken part in. And you will still be getting your monthly countdown to NaNoWriMo posts...

I may be tweaking parts of the blog over the next couple of weeks so stay tuned.

P.S. All the elements I used to create my new blog header (except for the text) came from The Graphics Fairy and The Background Fairy.