My Slant on being a Writer (No: 1)
Life can be something of a cookery lesson, you know take making a simple salad. The basis of a salad is lettuce, then you can add anything after that, nuts, tomatoes, onion, carrot the list is endless. So it is with writing, you start with an idea for your story - the lettuce - then as you begin to write the other ingredients pop into the bowl. When you have them all you simply toss well add a good pince of seasoning and dressing and with luck you have a story which is readable and active. I did say with luck didn't I?
Thats the point you see, if writing a novel was that easy then everybody would be doing it, but its not. Yes there are plenty of books out there but how many actually have a story that flows and is not disjointed. How many have been written by hours of sitting in front of a computer copying hand written words or just typing as the story unfolds writing and re-writing as you go.
These days you can buy a computer produced story and for what? writing is a thing of enjoyment - well it is to me - a computer can't feel it can't express emotion not like a character you create can. Ok so there is no waking in the night with a theme going through your head or realizing that the plot wont work, and you just HAVE to get up and correct things. But these are the things that make an author not a machine. Worrying about your character, getting a time line correct, the hours of research or checking your facts especially when dealing with history. I have some very good author friends who write in different fields but all of them write their own stories and are good at it because they write them themselves.
I write mostly adult books with adult content plus one book A Time of Learning which is, a friend told me, pornographic. It was not my intention to write in this area but life in the 1950's was like that. Today sex is still a little tabo in the UK but I now live in Spain where it is part of life and talked about openly, plus there does not seem to be so many unmarried mothers around perhaps there is a lesson here.
I have and still do enjoy writing about history be it adult books or for the younger generation. I am 73 and still learning which is something writing has done for me - kept me inquisitive. My book shelves are full of historical books mostly naval/sailing books but in there are my wifes historical books and books on social history of England.
I divide my day between work on the finca and writing with a little Petanca in between. Shopping gets me out and sitting in a bar over a coffee (drink and drive here and you loose the car) gives me a chance to people watch. Life is a continuous moving tapestry, which if you are quick enough, you can pluck ideas from.
This is where I set my thoughts out on various topics and life in general and announce my new books