Tag Archives: focus

Recalibrating the Focusing Apparatus

You may have noticed, astute reader, that I haven’t been talking about writing very much on the blog lately. Instead, I’ve been waxing lyrical about body image and issues of ableism and feminism and doing the odd book review, all of which is well and good of course but not exactly what one might expect from the blog of a person who claims to be a writer.

This is, naturally, a dreadful situation, for which I apologise.

It’s not because I’ve been going through a period of ‘block’ – a phenomenon I’ve been reading about on a lot of blogs lately, with some people deciding it exists and others saying it’s nothing but fear/laziness/lack of ambition, which I don’t believe to be true – or that I haven’t been actually doing any writing. I have been writing, and it has been flowing; sometimes more in a trickle than a gush, but it’s been there in one form or another. The problem is this: I’ve been going through a period of ‘The Fear’ again. My brain’s been rushing around like a mayfly, trying to do everything possible in a very short space of time, resting nowhere, focusing on nothing, giving everything a scant flicker of attention instead of doing its best to focus on one thing at a time. I have had a head full of ideas and plans for the past few weeks, and I’ve been trying to think about my life long-term and what I want it to be. All of this, without question, has diverted my focus from what I should be doing, which is putting words on paper.

Image: bepositivemom.com

Image: bepositivemom.com

I started back into ‘Tider’ with a vengeance yesterday, forcing myself to sit down and calm my oscillating mind long enough to get back into the story. It wasn’t easy to do this, and I don’t think I fully succeeded with it, but I know I did the best I could. I did manage to get some words out, and I’ve moved the story on a little, and things are – on the surface, at least – perfectly calm and under control.

My brain, however, is still twitchy.

This morning, before I started writing this blog post, I wrote out some ideas for ‘Tider’, and where I’d like to bring the story. I’m not used to writing without an exhaustive plot, which I’ve spent months working out, sitting beside my computer keyboard, and as freeing as it is to work the plot out as you go, I’m wondering if this is part of my attack of The Fear. It seems silly to admit that, but I do think it’s true. Who would have thought the style of plotting for a book – such a small little thing! – could be so terrifying? I keep reminding myself that what I’m writing at the moment counts as a first draft, with all the freedoms that go with it – I have permission to turn out a piece of work that is less than perfect. That’s what first drafts are for. But perhaps because I’ve had ‘Tider’ in my head for so long, in various forms, and I’ve written it before, it’s hard to remember that this is a first draft. I’m treating it, on one level, like a piece of work for which I have a looming deadline and which absolutely has to be perfect before that date.

I'm wondering if taking this up would be a good idea... Image: anthonybasich.com

I’m wondering if taking this up would be a good idea…
Image: anthonybasich.com

A rational examination of my life yields the following results: the book is working fine, I am still writing, everything is okay. I am on track.

I still feel afraid, though. Also, yes, I do realise how out of whack all this sounds.

It’s probably a result of a lot of factors – preparing for a future career and trying to plan for it, dealing with the rejections that are still coming in and about which I do not talk (stiff upper lip and all that), trying not to lose faith in myself and really doing my best to maintain my belief that this writing thing – in whatever form I can manage it – is where I need to be, and where my life is going.

It is the hardest thing I’ve ever done, even though I’m used to working alone, and keeping myself focused toward an end goal. It’s so tough to quieten your inner voice, the one that wants to bring you down and make you fail just so it can say ‘I told you so!’ It’s difficult to keep shoring up the foundations of your confidence when the world erodes away just another little piece of it. So far, I’m managing, but I have a lot of support, and I know that’s the only reason I’m still here.

So, I’m taking a few deep breaths and facing into a new day. I’m opening my computer file like it’s taking a step into a playground, where I’m allowed to have fun, and I’m going to try to keep reminding myself of that all day long. Hopefully, before too long, my brain will remember how to settle and focus, and we’ll get through this thing.

Happy Tuesday to you; I wish you peace, fulfilment and joy, happiness in whatever you’re doing today, and the success of a satisfied mind.

 

 

Monday Musings

It’s ‘that day’ again. Let’s not speak of it. I’ll draw a veil over it, shall I, and we can move on with the rest of the post? Marvellous.

If I may begin with an observation – weekends never seem to last long enough, do they? I’m still not fully convinced time behaves the way it’s supposed to. When nobody’s looking, I think it speeds up or slows down as much as it wants to, just for the fun of it. There’s no other explanation for why it seems to take so long to do the housework, say, or work your way through your manuscript, or whatever it is you might need to do between Monday and Friday, and then the weekend comes and you don’t even have time to take your shoes off before it’s Monday morning again.

Anyway.

Despite the fact that it was so brief that I barely knew it was there at all, I managed to have a nice weekend. We didn’t do a whole lot – in fact, I can hardly remember Saturday, which is probably not a good sign – but I’m pretty sure it was a good (if mentally vacant) day. Unfortunately, however, I didn’t get my manuscript edited. My aim for the weekend was to get the first edit of ‘Eldritch’ completed, and be ready to begin the second run-through this morning, but my brain had other ideas.

This is literally what the inside of my brain looked like this weekend. Image: artsandcatsmovement.wordpress.com

This is literally what the inside of my brain looked like this weekend.
Image: artsandcatsmovement.wordpress.com

I’m sure this is a ‘fail-safe’ mechanism, built into the brain; a ‘Do Not Edit’ function which kicks in when fatigue would make it dangerous to approach your WiP. It’s not just an excuse to let your brain ramble off down the highways and byways, gathering berries and singing to itself (though there’s nothing wrong with that, of course.) I felt the need to read this weekend, which I did – I got through ‘Eight Days of Luke’ by the majestic Diana Wynne Jones, and I started ‘Mortal Engines’ by Philip Reeve, which has been on my ‘To Read’ list for months. This takes the books I’ve read this week (if you count last weekend, too) to 3.36 approximately, which is a point of pride for me. Last weekend, I enjoyed ‘Robopocalypse’ by Daniel H. Wilson, and ‘A Tale for the Time Being’ by Ruth Ozeki, which is one of the most wonderful books I’ve ever read. My imagination feels fat and sleek at the moment, pulsing with inspiration and life. It’s just a shame my brain feels like a piece of lint.

Sometimes I feel that a change of scenery can be a very helpful thing to do if you’re feeling a little bit unmotivated. I spent a lot of Friday in Dublin city, which was great – the weather was wonderful, and it was refreshing to be among people and the hustle and bustle of a city again. I have a feeling, however, that I enjoyed it so much because I knew I’d be going home at the end of the day to my sleepy little one-horse village, where three people on the pavement at the same time constitutes a crowd – but in any case, it was great. I really enjoyed feeling like a pretentious auteur, sitting at a café table with my WiP spread neatly around me, being held down by coffee cups and milk jugs and random pieces of detritus, hoping someone would walk by and be stunned into awed silence by the sheer brilliance of my words. That last part didn’t happen, of course, but I enjoyed myself nonetheless. So, in an attempt to recreate that feeling of hipster-inspiration, I’m going to take myself off to our one and only coffee shop here in Countryville, order the most complicated coffee on their menu, and break out the red pen. I’m just over two-thirds of the way through ‘Eldritch’, so I am hopeful I’ll see the end of Edit One before the week is out.

So far, the editing has been going reasonably well. I’ve run into a few difficulties with regard to the book’s structure and its central narrative conceit, but I hope I’ve smoothed those over – that’s what I spent a lot of Friday doing. I am planning at least one more read-through before I start the query process (don’t worry about that noise you’re probably hearing right now – it’s just me, hyperventilating), and once ‘Eldritch’ is out of my hair, it’ll be time to go back and tackle the almighty mess that is ‘Tider’. I’m hoping my memory has made a bigger mess out of it than is actually the case in reality, and that I’ll be pleasantly surprised when I get back to it.

I guess it’s good to be an optimist.

Image: acceler8or.com

Image: acceler8or.com

So, I’m off to pack up my manuscript, my editing pens, and my wizened motivation, and hit the café. I’ll try not to wear black, or a beret, or sigh heavily at random intervals, but I can’t make any promises. Fingers crossed I’ll get the work done before I keel over from a caffeine overdose, or run out of money.

Whatever you find yourself doing this wet and miserable morning, good luck with it.

The War on Distraction

So, lately I’ve been feeling a little panicked. I’m not too worried about the feeling of being panicked itself, as such – I think it’s pretty normal to be nervous when you’ve made the choices I’ve made, and you’ve picked the slenderest branch of all to cling to. Still, though – feeling panicked is nasty, in and of itself, and I don’t like going through it.

I’m worried about my future, of course, and my husband’s and my financial security as time goes by. I’m worried, in my deepest moments of despair, that I’ve made the wrong choice (when I’m thinking more rationally, I realise I haven’t, of course, and that there’s nothing else on this earth I’m able to do better than what I’m doing right now), and I worry pretty much all the time that I’m not good enough to walk this path I’ve chosen. This manifests itself in various ways – I’m still sick at the moment, for instance, which I feel is significant. I’m normally the kind of person who shrugs off colds and flus and infections, but this one is proving harder to shift. Perhaps my body is metaphorically ‘circling its wagons’, waiting for the next attack, and doesn’t have any resources free to help me fight away the bugs.

I’m also experiencing a strange phenomenon, one I think I dislike very much indeed.

Image: scrapbookladypages.com

Image: scrapbookladypages.com

I’m normally a ‘start a job and see it through’ type of person; I’m not a quitter. I always do my best and I try to bring the same amount of effort to everything I do, whether it’s writing a short story or cleaning the bathroom. Over the past few days, though, I’ve been finding myself distracted at every turn by new ‘ideas’ – storylets, ones which may never have enough strength to stand on their own, but which are new and exciting and interesting and extremely demanding of my attention. I should be working on ‘Eldritch’, getting it fixed up and sorted out and ready to ship off; it’s a good little story, but there are issues with it that really need to be addressed, not least with its structure. Instead, I find my mind embroiling itself in the political and social structure of an entirely new world which is starting to unfurl behind my eyes, and searching through it for a tale that needs telling. I’m quashing my inner voice which is yelling at me that this is the story to write – this one will sell and it will work and it will be brilliant.

But I know what it truly means. I’m not being visited by the Super Inspiration Fairy from the Planet Amazing. It’s my brain trying to veer away from dealing with my real life issues, namely: I need to get something written, finished, polished, polished a bit more, checked one last time, and sent away for other eyes to read. I need to stop starting things, and start stopping things – or, in other words, focus on the work I’ve already begun, and get it finished to the highest level of professional accomplishment I can reach, and then let it go out into the world. I don’t want to dismiss my new ideas completely, and undeniably, it’s difficult to put them in a back pocket, so to speak, and have them ready to come back to when an opportunity presents itself, but it has to be done. I wish I had a big enough brain to work on everything, all at the same time, but I feel splitting my attention like that might make everything suffer.

However, I’m also a planner, and a list-maker, and a systematic sort of person. I get great satisfaction from ticking things off, knowing I’ve reached a particular goal, and that it’s a certain percentage of the way towards my ultimate goal. While procrastinating via distracting myself with new stories is, I feel, a destructive thing masquerading as a constructive thing, making lists of agents, publishers, dates, deadlines, competitions and so on can be a constructive thing – so long as I don’t let it get out of hand. In this regard, I have the greatest help imaginable in my husband, who shows me such loving support by actually telling me he enjoys looking things up for me on the internet and making me lists of competitions to enter and places to submit. What better help could I wish for? He’s the best defence I have against the war of attrition that Distraction is waging upon me right now, and I am so glad to have him by my side.

So, the plan today is: focus on getting better and feeling stronger, gently make note of any new ideas that bubble up in a panicked froth from the gurgling lake of my subconscious before putting them away somewhere safe, and, most critically, finish ‘Eldritch.’ I can’t do all of this at once, of course, but I need to stop allowing my attention to be divided. I don’t want to become a person who starts plenty, and finishes little. It’s never happened before, and it won’t start happening now.

Time to get to work.

Image: theheroinesbookshelf.com

Image: theheroinesbookshelf.com

Good Things Come…

A few nights ago, The Husband and I watched a TV show that we didn’t really mean to watch. You know what I mean – neither of us was bothered to take control of the remote, and we couldn’t choose a DVD to put on, and we were too tired to think about watching any of the (approximately) ten thousand shows we’ve recorded, so we just kept watching the channel we’d been watching already.

Which is how we managed to take in a documentary hosted by this lady:

Image: guardian.co.uk

Image: guardian.co.uk

about these two fellas here:

Image: blogs.telegraph.co.uk

Image: blogs.telegraph.co.uk

The lady is none other than the comedian and actor (or actress, if you prefer) Miranda Hart; I don’t know if you’ve heard of her, but I find her very amusing. I’ve often enjoyed her particularly awkward, slapstick brand of humour without realising that she believes she owes it all to the gents in the second picture – the unmistakeable Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise, of course. The TV programme Hart hosted was her homage to the famous Morecambe and Wise, whose comedy she had grown up watching, and whose influence on her, apparently, was incalculable. It was a warm, honest and touching hour of TV, and I’m glad that I watched it. Though, I wish it had been a conscious choice instead of one made for me by my own apathy.

In any case, the point I’m trying to come to is this: Morecambe and Wise are, even now, pretty famous. At least, in my part of the world, they are. They’re known for their timeless comedy double act, their lifelong friendship, their many catchphrases and their still hilarious physical comedy routines. They’re comedy gold. Their very names are shorthand for success and achievement.

But until I watched Miranda Hart’s programme about their lives, I had no idea how much work they had to put into getting noticed and getting gigs, and how young they’d both been when they started their careers. Hart was allowed to look through an archive of letters that Morecambe and Wise had sent to producers and theatre owners all over the UK, begging to be given even the smallest opportunity, or even to be allowed to audition. Nobody was interested. Some of the rejections were polite and helpful, but most were dismissive. It was an eye-opener for me. I would’ve thought that people with the level of talent possessed by Morecambe and Wise would have met with immediate success and acceptance, and that the quality of their ability would have been obvious from the start. But it seems not.

Of course, I know all about authors and their struggles to make it. I’m aware how slow and painful a process it can be to get even a toe onto the publishing ladder, let alone make a living out of words. But for some reason, knowing that other creative pursuits have a similarly punishing induction regime was a revelation. As well as that, it was almost comforting, in an odd sort of way. Morecambe and Wise are deservedly famous, and have left a legacy second to none, because they were both extraordinarily talented in their own right but also because they managed to find each other – their unique ‘hook’ or selling point – and they worked so well as a team. And, also, because they worked – from a very early age, they were plying their trade and learning the ropes of showbiz. But if even people of their talent and ability had to struggle to make it, it makes the mountain facing me seem a little easier to climb. I’m not facing this mountain because I’m stupid, or unable to write, or don’t deserve a chance – I’m facing it because it faces everyone, and everyone finds their own way over it.

And, of course, the lesson is: there are no shortcuts. Good things come to those who wait, but also to those who work. This was true in the 1940s, as Morecambe and Wise were trying to sell their comedy routine, and it’s true now, too. It can be hard to remain patient and focused when you’re watching your email inbox like a hawk, or scouring Twitter for any mention of competitions you’ve entered or shortlists you’re hoping to make, but you just have to put all that to one side and remember to keep writing, and keep breathing. To use another aphorism – Slow and Steady Wins the Race.

I’ve always liked that one, actually.

Image: onesocialmedia.com

Image: onesocialmedia.com

 

 

Writing Up a Storm

Yesterday, the weather was terrible. Not hurricane-terrible, or tsunami-terrible (I’m often thankful for Ireland’s reasonably clement climate!), but dark, cold, with really heavy rain and hail storms. So, I kept myself pretty much housebound.

Sort of like this, except worse.Image: disastersafety.typepad.com

Sort of like this, except worse.
Image: disastersafety.typepad.com

That’s not to say I didn’t do anything useful, though.

I set myself up on http://www.authonomy.com a few days ago, and one of the things I did manage to do yesterday was upload just over 10,000 words of a Work in Progress to the site. Its working title is ‘Eldritch’, and as I said yesterday, I envisage it as being the first book in a trilogy (currently titled ‘The Astolat Conspiracy’), aimed at readers between the ages of maybe 8 to 12. Of course, I’d hope older readers would enjoy it too! If you’d like to check out what I’ve done, please feel free to visit the website – you can search for my book using the word ‘Eldritch’. You can read it without logging in, or giving details, or any of that craziness, and best of all – it’s entirely free. So far, I’ve been made very welcome and I’ve (at time of writing) managed to gather four kind reviews, complete with some useful critical comments. Even though it’s early days yet, my impression of the site is very positive. I’ve also read some wonderful work by other users, both people who’ve reviewed my work and people whose work I just liked the sound of, and it’s been an education to say the least. There are a lot of very talented people writing in the world today; I’m trying to take that as a good thing – in other words, the genre I love, and the stories that I love, are alive and kicking – instead of ‘oh my goodness, look at all the competition!’

It’s not as easy as it looks, you know, this positive thinking malarkey. But I’m doing my best.

Following a dream is a bit like feeling your way around an unfamiliar room in the dark sometimes. As well as the inherent insecurity of chasing something intangible, though, I also know I only have a limited time in which I can indulge myself, so I really hope I can make the most of the time I’ve got. I suppose, then, what I’m doing at the moment is more like feeling my way around that unfamiliar room in the dark, all the time knowing there’s a really wonderful treasure to be found somewhere in the unknown – and, like the hailstones that fell yesterday, the treasure won’t last forever. Eventually, it will melt away and be gone, leaving no trace that it was ever there at all. However, I am determined to do the best I can, and write as much as I’m able, and do the best work of which I’m capable. If other people read and enjoy it at the same time, then it’s a bonus.

In other news, work on ‘Eldritch’ is going well. I also spent some time on an even older WiP yesterday, one I started so long ago that I’d forgotten the story of it. I’m not sure it’s salvageable, but I know that I loved it dearly once upon a time, so perhaps I’ll find a useful nugget in there. And, of course, ‘Tider’ is bubbling away in my subconscious all the time! I feel like a circus plate-juggler, sometimes. But I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Since the competition ended, I’ve felt a little bit unfocused – the central point of my writing life has gone, you might say. But I’m making new goals for myself, and new milestones and deadlines. I want to have ‘Eldritch’ out on submission by the end of March, for instance. That’s a goal I can meet, I think. I’m hopeful I’ll be able to work on ‘Tider’ during that time, too – the two books are very different, so working on them simultaneously should not only be possible, but maybe even beneficial.

(Sometimes I read back over things I write on this blog and say to myself: ‘you crazy fool!’ I just had one of those moments. However, I suppose those moments keep life interesting.)

So, today I’ll be embarking upon a marathon ‘Eldritch’ writing session. I’ll let you know how it goes. Stay warm, stay dry, and remember to keep searching for that treasure!

Distractions

Maybe it’s because it’s Friday (yay!) or it’s because I’ve been away from the WiP for a few days now (not so yay), but I find myself struggling to get stuck in to the revising process this morning. Today, as you may know, I want to do one last (yelp!) read-through before I make all my corrections on-screen, and print out The Final Version of the book. There are so many distractions in the world though, aren’t there? I’m on Twitter, which is great fun, but undeniably diverting, and I’m thinking about another project; my brain is buzzing with about four or five ideas, including some plot details for a sequel to the WiP. No matter how much I tell myself ‘get the current work done first, and then think about new things,’ my brain still fizzes away. I feel like I’ve inhaled powdered Alka-Seltzer.

Plink Plink Fizz!

Plink Plink Fizz!

I’m not sure where all this manic mental energy is coming from – possibly I’m being fuelled by terror right now. I’m realising that I only have a month of the ‘suspended animation’ in which I’ve been living left – after that, it’s going to get real. After that time, I’ll have a much clearer idea of how the rest of my writing career will look, and the steps I’ll need to take to make my dreams a reality. Writing the book, despite how challenging it’s been (and continues to be) is only the beginning.

Given that I don’t like change very much, and it takes me, on average, about a year to make any huge life decision (besides saying ‘yes’ when my husband asked me to marry him, after I’d made completely sure he wasn’t joking), it’s sort of no wonder that I’m feeling a bit uneasy about what might be facing me in January. It’s very easy to faff about, writing a book and having a wonderful time indulging yourself in your favourite activity, but then you realise: hang on. This has to be a viable thing, a real option for me – it has to work. I’m a responsible adult with bills, and stuff. I have books to buy, for God’s sake! Writing is the easy bit, but being a writer? That seems harder. Self-promotion? Not very good at that. Selling your ‘product’? Yeah… not very good at that, either. Even when I worked in a sales role, I used to feel like apologising for having to charge the customer money for their purchase! That’s the kind of person I am. Why did I choose this path in life, again? Oh yeah – that’s right. It wasn’t really a choice. My brain strong-armed me into it.

The only ‘distraction’ I’m grateful for is the fact that I can read the blogs and Tweets of other people in the same boat as myself, and I can see how they do it. I can learn from their wisdom and get inspiration from those who’ve made similar life-choices to me (or, whose brains are made of the same stubborn stuff as mine, at least). That’s a useful distraction, and one in which I don’t mind indulging.

But really – I’d better crack on. This pile of paper won’t edit itself, you know! I hope you’re having a focused, productive and happy Friday, and that your weekend will make you look like this:

dancing dog

Start Your Engines!

So, it’s Monday. It’s grey and windy outside. My husband went back to work today after having some holiday time at home, and I miss him. I’m feeling a bit blech and I don’t really know why.

Oh, yeah – now I remember why. It’s my birthday today. Let the grimacing commence!

I feel old (even though I’m not, really) and completely unmotivated to do any work, as I’m sure most people are on their birthdays – at least, I hope so! I don’t want to be the conspicuously odd-one-out lazybones over here. But I will get myself down to it as soon as this blog post is done. Writing a blog is great on so many levels, but I appreciate it most as a kick-start into the day; once I’ve written my post, I have no excuse not to keep writing. This is what I tell myself, at least!

I do feel like today’s writing is going to be an uphill struggle, though. Don’t get me wrong, I still love my characters, and I’m still having ideas as to how to strengthen and improve the story so as to make it richer, more layered, more enjoyable to read and more interesting, but there’s always that little voice whispering to me, its words pervasive: this isn’t very good, now is it? Who do you think is going to read this, hmm? Well, maybe you can count on your family buying a copy, but they’re not actually going to read it. Come on now, let’s be realistic – given the amount of writers out there, why do you think your work is going to make any sort of impression? And so on, and so on.

Homer Simpson with angel on one shoulder, devil on the other

I know how Homer feels right now!

I’m not writing in order to be rich, or famous, or to have people harass me for my autograph over the frozen food aisle in the supermarket, or anything like that. If that’s what I wanted, I’d go on one of those sick-making ‘reality’ TV shows that are popping up like warts all over what passes for popular culture these days. I’m writing because it’s been an urge, a compulsion, in my heart ever since I can remember, and despite how hard it is (and it really, truly is hard work) I know I will feel this urge for the rest of my life, and life handed me an opportunity to pursue it for a while, and here I am. So, really, the little inner voice shouldn’t even bother me, and motivation shouldn’t be an issue.

But it is.

I’ve finished draft 2, and today I’m going to start work on draft 3. This means I will, hopefully, have managed to work through one more draft than I’d planned to by the time this book needs to be finished. I had planned to finish draft 2 by the end of November, but I managed it a little bit more quickly than I’d expected. I’m hoping this is because my editing/rewriting skills improved as I went on, and not because I wasn’t doing my job properly as I got closer to the end! I do feel the book is stronger now than it was before, but there are still some scenes I’m not entirely happy with, and which I feel a professional editor, were I to employ one, would tell me to get rid of. But that’s the beauty of drafts – nobody ever needs to see draft 1, draft 2 or even draft 3. Nobody but me ever needs to read the silly, clunky, unrealistic, ridiculous scenes that are currently littering this book, and which (with any luck) by the beginning of January will have been excised. Fingers crossed, with any luck this story of mine will – one day – be published, and all people will read is the polished, practically perfect finished product. In fact, I hope all this effort will culminate in a good piece of work, even if it never comes to publication.

Another problem is that my WiP is very long – longer than guidelines suggest books of its genre should be when you’re trying to find an agent or a publisher. I know this isn’t good, so that’s going to be priority 1 for this next drafting exercise. I think, however, I’m sort of programmed to add, rather than remove, words – I don’t think I’m a good editor of my own work. I’m much better when editing someone else’s writing, probably because there’s no emotional connection there. I’m also not sure I can make the story any shorter – if I cut scenes out, I have a feeling I’ll realise that I’ve lost a vital plot point and they’ll have to be reinstated. Or, I’ll have to rewrite the scenes to include the vital plot point, and I’ll end up creating an even more ridiculous scenario that takes even more words to describe! *Sigh*

Well, I guess there’s nothing for it but to just get started. The kettle’s boiling, and the coffee’s on the way. My lovely husband bought me two brilliant albums for my birthday present – Neil Young’s ‘Psychedelic Pill’ and Jack White’s ‘Blunderbuss’ – so I have some inspirational company as I kick off draft 3.

Wish me luck!