I can’t recall the moment I first decided that I wanted to be a writer. It was probably one of those ‘lightbulb’ moments you get from time to time, when something clicks in your brain, and you think ‘I could do this.’
Whenever that moment was, from that moment to this, there has always been something creative bubbling around my head. Whether it’s an idea for a short story, or yet another novel (of which I’ve had loads, but only now have I actually purposefully made a start on one), or even a Sitcom script, my brain is producing these things faster than I can write them down! I can’t tell you how many pieces of paper I’ve got lying around with little notes for things, or how many emails I’ve sent myself from work with plans and plots for novels.
‘What makes you think you can be a writer?’ I hear you say. Well, I don’t know. There is that old adage that everyone has a story to tell. I feel like I’ve got about twenty stories to tell. I’m not going to tell you that I’m an excellent writer, because I fully understand that I have a long way to go. I haven’t studied the technicalities of writing, I’m just going on my gut instinct, which judging from my choice of first wife, isn’t always on the money!!
I don’t know if it’s just me, but I feel that a writer needs support. Whether it be from friends, family or loved ones, I like to think that people are rooting for me to achieve my life’s dream of being a professional writer.
However, I can vividly recall the day I went to see the career advisor (with my mother in tow – what was I thinking?!) with hopes of getting on the right track to writing success, only to be ridiculed and pooh-poohed. “You’ve never had anything published” my mum cackled. “Have you ever written for the school magazine?” the career advisor smirked. “Well, no,” I admitted. “But I’ve got to start somewhere. Why not here and now?” This was not good enough. So I ended up stuck on a shitty Business HND at Shrewsbury College for two years going nowhere.
Yes, it got me a job. And I should be thankful for that. But my God it was dull. Even though my dream had been laughed at by the very people who should have helped me to achieve it, I did still get writing. I entered a couple of the BBC’s Script writing competitions, I started probably my first serious writing project, my still unfinished sitcom, ‘Blue Jay Way’, and I started messing about with a couple of novel ideas.
I got married, and divorced, but still the writing bug never left me. In one of the few positive moments in my marriage, I was encouraged to do a Journalism distance learning course. I completed it, and enjoyed doing so, and I’ve got the certificate somewhere here!
In order to write a good book, a writer has to produce something believable. Something that gets his or her readers emotionally involved. At some point I will use the lows of my marriage as the basis of something, but for now, I am trying to plough a similar furrow to those occupied by Nick Hornby or Tony Parsons. The dark stuff can come later. Considering I’ve led a fairly sheltered life to date, my inspiration is going to have to come from without rather than within. Which means research, research, research.
About five years ago, I started this blog as an outlet for various things – stories, opinions, reflections and so on – and after originally plodding on using the Google blogger, I moved across to WordPress nearly a year ago. Over the years, I’ve had quite a few hits and visitors, but rarely have people left me any words of encouragement or constructive criticism even. Which is really what I was hoping for, folks!
I’ve got a Facebook page for this blog too, www.facebook.com/specsrugssausagerolls if you’re interested, and I try and drum up support and praise/criticism through there, mostly to no avail.
I don’t know who reads my stuff, whether it’s friends, family or complete strangers, but once in a while, it would be nice if somebody told me they liked a story, or made a suggestion on improvements here or there. Or even just damned well told me something was wrong or rubbish.
So, I’m going to finish now, but before I do, here’s a test for anyone that’s just sat and read through this post.
If you’ve ever visited my blog, for any reason, and found yourself browsing, what have you enjoyed reading most?