December 2014

Thanks plus goals for this blog in 2015

Thanks Firstly a big thanks to everyone who follows or reads this blog. An even bigger thanks to those special few who have chosen to leave comments! To be honest, I really did not expect much interest. So imagine the surprise that I feel knowing that since establishing this blog in July I have had 1,214 views.  In December alone I have had 487 views and 254 visitors. My YouTube channel is also

Using Excel charts to create a cityscape for an illustration

Hi all. After a bit of rest I managed to finish off this post and video for you. My arm and shoulder are still hurting, and I will have an MRI tomorrow, but I really wanted this out there as it was mostly done. Below is a very simple “super-hero flying up out of a city” type picture. You see them in comics all the time. The very basic buildings in the

More lessons learnt about adversity and more on Excel for cityscapes

Today’s post will be some self-indulgent stuff that I am learning from this experience of chronic pain in my right arm. I will try to write it up in an interesting manner so as to practice my writing skills. I will also preview my proof-of-concept about using MS Excel for making cityscapes. Me and my illness, my illness and me… In the scheme of things, having some sort of temporary

What can writers learn from unexpected illness?

So here I am, lying on my back with a pinched nerve causing the right side of my body to throb. I cannot use my right hand and so am patiently tapping away on my phone with my left hand. I am experiencing my normal drowsy and not particularly lucid response to painkillers. I have a video almost ready to publish on YouTube but cannot finish it until my right

Sculptris and then a review of a texture pack that authors can use as a resource

Hi all, This post starts off with a chat about an application called Sculptris and then talks about a texture pack that I highly recommend for anyone looking at creating affordable, high quality book art. Sculptris I had originally intended to write a little piece about a free 3D sculpting program called Sculptris. It is free and can be downloaded from here. Some months I created the following image of mushrooms

To map or not to map - Part 3

I now have a “photo” map of what Shade looks like. The combination of Bryce and Photoshop was great. I also spent a lot of time referencing Google Maps to get a sense of colours and geography. Notice that since my previous pictures of the map I have flipped it to its true east-west direction. I also decided to crop off any bits of geography not used in the story,

To map or not to map - Part 2

So the last time you looked my map looked like this: But I was unhappy with the progress. I felt that the mountains were not as impressive as I wanted them – and also looked  a bit too CGI if you know what I mean. So I went back into Bryce and discovered my first error: I had not saved a camera view. This is the view which you put in

Writing a novel as a quality based venture

Today I am writing a bit of theory on quality in writing. Just my opinion mixed with some theory picked up over the years. Writing a novel can be viewed from a number of perspectives, but I like to believe that quality is intrinsic to the entire process. Whether writing for your own pleasure or writing for the pleasure of others, an author wants to achieve something that meets their goals.

Profiling my villain and showing you how the map is progressing

I am still working on my map and will show the progress so far at the end of this post. But I also continue to write the novel and research ideas relating to it. Indeed, in respect to Tempting in Shade I have reached 411 pages and can perceive that it is likely to end up almost double that. Will my mid-2015 deadline fall? I would not be surprised if