Ever since I was young, I’ve loved reading. My grandmother, who I spent more time with than anyone growing up, always encouraged me to read. In recent years, I neglected books (maybe I saw books as a chore – a hangover from seven years of higher level education!); however, in 2018 I set myself a resolution of reading a book a week for the year. My plan was to get through a mixture of fiction and non-fiction titles, both to rediscover my love of the hobby and to expand a knowledge base that was weighted far too much towards sports and the answers to questions commonly asked on The Chase.
One consequence of rediscovering my passion for reading, which was wholly unintended at the time, was that I found myself wanting to tell stories of my own. I’ve written a few blogs over the years, mainly related to my job (or, more specifically, related to the soft skills used in my job – I don’t blog about accounting standards!). Whilst I enjoy writing these (and don’t plan to stop!), the idea of having a chance to be creative and tell a story of my own is difficult to ignore.
With this in mind, I’ve decided to give writing some fiction a go. I’m not limiting myself to genres or target audiences at this point; hell, if more than ten people ever read something I’ve written I’ll call it a success. I’m going to write something I would want to read. I’m going to try to develop characters that are real people, with real struggles. I want my experiences to influence the stories that I tell. But mainly I want to have fun doing it.
I have no doubt that writing a book will take me a long time, especially with everything else going on in real life! And that’s fine by me; if it takes me a year, so be it. The ideal situation for me is that I find writing the second book easier than the first…and so on. I’m a couple of chapters in with my first attempt, and honestly the first 200 words were a slog. Scene-setting is something that I haven’t got the hang of quite yet. But the next 2,000 words were easier. And I suspect the next 2,000 will be easier again. Sometimes, it’s about sitting down and just letting your brain dump some words on a page. The editing can come later.
The thing I’m enjoying most so far as I embark on this effort is that I don’t really know where the story is going right now. I have the plot marked out, but the journey to get there I’m going to leave to the mercy of the words that appear on the screen as I type. It could make editing fun!
Hopefully I’ll write a few blogs on how well (or otherwise!) things are going over the next months. If anything, writing my thoughts on what I’m getting up to only increases my enjoyment of the journey of writing a book. If I’m going to use my spare time to try to put some words in a semi-decent order, it should be fun, right?!