Anything but writing….

Every single blog about marketing yourself as an author says to write your own blog. “Let people know all about the real you and you will soon build up a following.” That sounds marvellous and easy enough but nowhere do those blogs say how difficult that actually is to do.

Most of you don’t know me from Adam. I don’t even know who Adam is, which possibly makes me even less interesting that you already suspected BUT here’s the thing, I have friends who do find me interesting and oftentimes quite amusing. I’m not going to try to be clever or funny – hopefully over time you will begin to learn who I am by my writing but for now, I am just going to talk about things that strike me in one way or another.

Firstly, and I am not sure that everyone will agree with me but yesterday I was baffled by the fact that Andy Murray’s Mrs, having given birth THREE days earlier, was deemed ‘Breaking News.’ Happy and positive news, especially for those who are interested (ahem) in such matters but breaking news, no?

During those three days BIG things had happened: a devastating earthquake had hit Taiwan and killed and injured hundreds, two trains had crashed head on in Germany…..and so on.

So, it got me thinking.

What has happened to us, if anything at all, that real and important news is pushed aside to make way for news about celebrities and such like? Is that really what people want to read about? Is there some kind of comfort in glossing over the heartache and painful news and revelling in the lightweight happenings of the day. Either way, for the majority of readers neither (the good, nor the bad news on a daily basis) will actually touch our lives in any significant way (thank goodness).

Secondly and totally unconnected to that, I am finding it hard to actually write my books. It wasn’t like that before – they seemed to write themselves – but now I feel a pressure that wasn’t there and so instead am distracting myself with other tasks that I can pretend are worthwhile, like: the kitchen is spotless and everything has been put away/ laundry is washed (not sure my writer’s block is enough to resort to ironing it) and commenting on Humans of Bombay on Facebook (I even got the top comment on a post today – that has never happened before). So, today has sort of been a successful writing day – even though it was only with a random comment! I have been rewarded for typing some words and in normal circumstances would now be able to flop guilt-free on the sofa and watch Psychic Detectives but not today.

Today I am a grown up and acknowledge that I have complete control over my actions. Therefore, I WILL before the end of the day, have written at least 1,000 words of a book (the prequel or the sequel to Mortal End: A Simmering Pit of Jiggery Pokery), although I will be keeping those words to myself, so you will just have to trust me that they exist.

A friend (a very successful author and screenplay writer) once gave me the best piece of advice about writing, which was to keep the story to yourself until you are ready to tell it (i.e. it’s all written down and ready to go) because, like with any form of storytelling, the reward is in the response from your audience. Once you have had your hungry ego fed the urge to tell the story has been satisfied.

Talking of which, it is okay to take time away from writing to eat, right? Just feeling a little peckish…..



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