I’m never quite sure that I’m a proper writer. I write a lot, but I don’t feel like an author. Authors are Bohemian and charming and incredibly well informed and wise. I’m an older middle aged housewife who is incredibly conventional and I don’t feel wise at all. I know all sorts of little bits and pieces and I collect useless information like fluffy sweaters collect lint, but I always feel that real authors know the secrets of the universe. I’m still working out the secrets of my smartphone.
I was comfortable with this until I went on the school run immediately after writing an incredibly assertive character. I was not in the mood to dither, I got in that car and zoomed off.
It’s not that long since I passed my driving test, and I wouldn’t say I was a confident driver. I’m more sensible than speedy. That day was different. I may not have gone over the speed limit or through any red lights, but I took those blind corners with assurance. I didn’t dither at the roundabout. (Mind you, at that particularly roundabout, anyone who dithers is toast.) I sailed up the steep climb before the cross roads in third gear and the car purred. I didn’t notice until I was waiting for my son in the supermarket carpark and realised that I had swept though the school run. I decided that if I finally get up the courage to go on a motorway, I’m writing someone prickly and resilient before I even attempt the slip road.
It was something of a revelation. Until now, I’ve always approved artistic temperament in other people, but not me. Writing about something sad shouldn’t make me sad. I can understand and sympathise with other writers, but I never felt that I had the right to that myself. But now I know that if I write a vengeful woman, I drive like a vengeful woman and perhaps I should embrace my inner diva – within reason of course!
So this is the first in what I hope is a fun series of me finding out about being a writer and sharing it. I published my first book in 2012. It’s time that I embraced what it means to me.
And speaking of my first book, The Forgotten Village, I’m armpit deep in revising it, re-editing it, hopefully dividing it into chapters (not my strong point) and getting it into paperback as well as ebook, so watch this space for updates.
I love hearing from you, so let me know what you think or if you have any questions.