Oh So Middle of the Road

23 May

morgan-sessions-6256-unsplash

Stay in the middle of the road, Mum said, that way no one can jump out at you, attack you from the edges, or the hedges.

Walk in the direction of on-coming traffic, Dad told me, so you can see what’s coming and take evasive action, if they don’t.

Don’t stray over the line, my instructor commanded, keep yourself safe.

The cop had asked me to walk the line.

Like Johnny Cash, I asked.

Like I’ve never heard that before.

I wasn’t drunk or high. I had not been using any illegal substances. There was nothing in my actions that would betray me.

If you don’t count the destruction I had wracked behind me. Still, at least I had kept myself safe.

 

This piece was inspired by a photo on 23rd of May 2019 @ Creative Writing Ink – Prompts 

If you liked this piece, maybe you would like to buy me a coffee.

 

 

Routines and Not Having Them

21 May

I’ve been talking to a couple of my creative friends about the value of having routines: that’s not strictly true, we’ve been moaning about not having them. One has had her routine disrupted by boomerang children; while the other has taken redundancy from a full-time job to pursue her passions. I should also say, now that I am officially self-employed/non-earning, that I am also looking for balance.

The life of a creative person is as varied as the number of creatives there are. Some crave routine, while others want to be free to see where the muse takes them. The routine folk are disciplined, but I also think, probably people who don’t have any other pressing commitments; while the free folk are in danger of the muse never taking them to their work table.

D said that she didn’t want to move out of the workplace only to be ruled by her own timetable of tasks. While M just wanted everyone to leave her in peace for long enough that she could get into the right mindset for writing.

A couple of weekends ago, or is it three, I was in Gatehouse of Fleet, and was really chuffed that I could spend time putting my novel in order and figuring out where the gaps were. So, I came home with great plans which up to the last couple of days have come to naught.

So, what happened a couple of days ago? Well, I spent quite a lot of time with my usual foottering, although I did have emails etc that I had to catch up with (as I’ve been visiting hospitals again). But then, I decided that I would write 1000 words, not of short stories, though there are a few half-written, but of my novel. I wrote 1000, or there abouts, but came to a natural stop at 19,000 words exactly. It was almost as though my writing genie was making a point. And so, 1000 words today have also been written (again of the novel). I know it takes a few weeks for things to become habits, but maybe if I really stick at the routine, then I will make headway, and stop wasting so much time figuring out what was happening when I last wrote the damn thing.

On a side note, I’ve also put a pedometer back on my phone, so am trying to make walking part of my routine again (take steps while the sun shines).

And another side note, is about my side bar: while I was foottering around the internet I came upon Ko-fi which allows you to buy virtual coffee. If you would like to support what I do, then you can click on the link. Ta.

Ko-fi.com/colettecoen

 

Postbox Launch

10 May

Postbox LaunchPostbox Editor, Colin Will writes:

A photo from today’s launch of Postbox magazine at the Scottish Poetry Library. L-R Reaghan ReillyTom MurrayTom KellyLaura FyfeColette Coen DugganMaggie Graham. They’re all in the magazine. Included authors also present at the launch but not in the photo were Kirsti Wishart andJenne Gray. The readers were outstanding and hugely entertaining, and I am so thrilled to be part of this adventure. Thanks to Sheila Wakefield andGerry Cambridge for making it all happen. — withReaghan ReillyTom MurrayTom Kelly and Laura Fyfe.

Postbox Magazine Launch

2 May

Very excited to be reading at the launch of the first ever edition of Postbox Magazine. What’s more, it’s at the Scottish Poetry Library (don’t worry, I will be reading prose.) at 1pm on Saturday the 4th of May. Can’t wait to get my mitts on a copy, and delighted to be in the company of two other G2 Writers (Alan Macfarlane and Charlie Gracie), along with other great talents.

I am also just back from my annual writers’ retreat – this year we went south, to The Bakehouse in Gatehouse of Fleet – 8 of us read, wrote, slept, walked, ate and laughed. It gave me time to get some submissions off (still looking for a publisher for my short story collection) and to get my head back in gear for my novel. Putting what I’ve written into the right order, was a good start.

Big hooray also that one of my kids has now been discharged from their consultant’s care, while another has been well and at school for the longest period in 2 years. Phew.

Gatehouse of Fleet - Wickerman

Featured in the Wickerman – Gatehouse of Fleet

G2 Writers

G2 Writers (plus guest) enjoying the banter in Gatehouse of Fleet

Beautiful cherry blossom

Gatehouse of Fleet

Pushing out the Boat – Issue 15

16 Apr

Vain thing that I am, I had to wait until I had had my haircut before I could show off my latest publication. Here I am with Pushing out the Boat, which features a story of mine called Brightly Coloured Jewels about a woman whose Candy Crushesque addiction gets in the way of her responsibilities.

Colette Coen holding Pushing out the Boat

Colette Coen holding Pushing out the Boat

Quote

A New Outlet for Flash Submissions

26 Mar

via Submissions

Recommendation for Writers and Editors

21 Mar

Thought some of you here might be interested in this really great podcast about the editing process The Editing Podcast – useful for writers and editors alike.

 

Short short list

6 Mar

I’ve been trying to submit more regularly to the Writing Magazine‘s monthly competitions and have made it onto the shortlist again. Big up to Michael Callaghan and Dominic Bell whose names are on almost every list. And of course to the winner and runner-up whose work will appear here very soon, or now in the April edition of The Writing Magazine, which comes with a competition supplement and an advert for Beech Editorial Services (plug plug).

 

Another Day, Another 30 Dollars

28 Feb

The Writing Quarter has once again chosen a story of mine as their monthly winner. The exchange rate between here and Australia means that I get £1 less than last time, but enough to cover the competitions I am busy entering today.

The story Pot Luck is one I wrote a few years ago, though the theme has become even more pertinent (and personal) over time, to the point that I almost consigned it to the bin, but didn’t, as it is always useful (if painful) to raise awareness.

I sometimes think that I spend an inordinate amount of time entering writing competitions and submitting to magazines – tweaking the text so that it is within word limits; making sure the headers and footers abide by the rules; removing or adding my name – but the reason I carry on is because I want people to read my work, and if I don’t send it out, then it won’t be read.

I checked the proofs yesterday of one of my stories that will appear in the next edition of Pushing out the Boat, and Postbox Magazine, with another wee tale, is coming soon. So, it’s the last day of February and that’s three ‘yeses’ since the new year. I’m happy with that but I need to carry on with the submissions if I want to carry on in the same vein.

 

Postbox Magazine

19 Feb

Delighted to be in the first issue of Postbox Magazine (to be published in March). Two other G2 members in there too – Alan Macfarlane and Charlie Gracie. Can’t wait to see it.

Shooter Literary Magazine

Short fiction, non-fiction and poetry

Paula Williams Writer

a blog about writing, books and sometimes Dalmatians

remixtmag

Remixt: a magazine of multiple perspectives

Scottish Writers' Centre

Company No: SC349247 - Charity No: SC040823

paulahunterblog

Stumbling about gob-smacked by the world

Sarah Tinsley

The Power of Words

Sally Jenkins

A Writer on Writing, Reading and Life

Morgen 'with an E' Bailey

Author, Tutor, Speaker, Editor, Comp Judge: www.morgenbailey.com

The Bath Novel Awards

international prizes for emerging novelists

JoUnwin

Helping authors get their books published

Zoë Strachan

News from www.zoestrachan.com

Bucket List Publications

Indulge- Travel, Adventure, & New Experiences

The Reading Room (Seòmar Leughaidh)

For lovers of the written word in Skye

Wee Scoops

Measure for Measure

The Daily Post

The Art and Craft of Blogging

CATHERINE RYAN HOWARD

EDGAR NOMINATED CRIME WRITER

Blog About Writing

Just another WordPress.com site

makemeafrock

I make nice frocks and write average poetry. And there's a bit of embroidery and the occasional rant.