…Being a Writer.
Well, my lovely publisher, Choc Lit, is celebrating their seventh birthday on 15th of June! I wanted to write a blog post containing something ‘7’ish to link in with that, so here’s my little take on the Seven Deadly Sins of being a Writer.
The problem with writing romantic novels containing an appealing hero, is that you have to somehow create the perfect man – and make him a believable perfect man. I find that t’s always good to work with images, so I can get that chap in my head before I start writing about him. However, it seems as if lots of people have the same idea. In many discussions with other authors, one name and one image always crops up: Aidan Turner. There are, I guess, thousands of heroes that must look like Aidan Turner. But Aidan, if you’re reading this, you know it’s the film version of my novel you really want to star in, okay?
A huge authorly failing. Gluttony equals Chocolate. In vast quantities. My novels are written through a miasma of chocolate and coffee. I am fuelled by sugar and caffeine…
…And you can throw a bit of cake in there as well. Or a biscuit perhaps? I’m not proud. I am also not a size zero, which is not surprising. I’m also usually not even hungry when I reach for my next snack. I just do it.
Ahhh yes –the Author is enmeshed in Sloth the morning after their characters keep them awake at night. My characters shout at me and tell me what to do until the wee small hours. It’s pretty tough when I have to lurch into my day-job and pretend I’m wide awake when they’ve been talking all night. I have been known to email myself the details just to shut them up. And the scary part is that these are people I have made up. They aren’t real. Should I be worried?
The anger you feel at a rubbish review. Nobody minds a constructive one – but something that says, for example, “I haven’t read this yet” and leaves it there with a 1-star dangling over it helps nobody. Fortunately this hasn’t happened to me yet (touch wood), but I know authors who have experienced this wrath-inducing behaviour. I therefore growl on their behalf. Grrrr.
When you realise how much money the big names are raking in. Most authors I know have to have a job of some description as well. I don’t mind people who deserve to rake in the money – indeed, I’m very happy to buy books by my favourite authors – but some authors who produce pages of dire prose and non-stories with very little effort and continue to trade on their names…grrrrr again (50 Shades of Tripe, anyone?). And don’t get me started on the “celebrity” writers who couldn’t string a sentence together without the aid of a ghostwriter. Grrrr once more. Some of us have to work for this, you know, you random twelve year old YouTube “sensations”! Try doing it on your own with a family and a job and a LIFE, Sunshine. Oh, and maybe after you’ve passed a couple of GCSEs.
That feeling you get when you actually see your name in print, on a book, or on an article. There’s nothing quite like holding your own paperback in your hands or hearing from readers who have enjoyed your work. When someone tells me they’ve loved my writing – it’s a great feeling. One of the nicest things I can wake up to is a lovely review or a message saying ‘I’ve loved your book – I can’t wait for the next one.’ So Happy birthday Choc Lit and thanks for everything – especially for making this sort of thing a reality.
I am now off to celebrate, on your behalf, with cake and chocolate. (see points 2 and 3 above…) Have a lovely day everyone, and Happy Reading! xxx