Ever since I was a small child, I have wanted to write for a living. It all started with a class story when I was back in reception, five years old and deciding on a path in life. For the most part of growing up, it wasn’t something anyone took seriously, least of all myself. I felt – and often still do – that no one believes in my writing enough to think I actually have the skill to turn around and say I’m an author.
Then I went to university and studied a writing degree. My dissertation involved digging out a novel that I had been working on for a few years. Suddenly, I had to write it properly. I had to know my characters, plan my plot and work out my pacing. Suddenly, for the first time ever, I felt like I could actually do this.
One of my New Year’s Resolutions last year was to get the novel finished. Needless to say, that didn’t happen. Starting work meant it got put on the back shelf and I forgot where I was up to and what I wanted to happen. But over the Christmas break, I decided to dig it out again. I realised it was up to me and no one else to live my dreams, and leaving it gathering dust in the archives of my computer was not striving to be the person I have always wanted to be.
So I got writing again. I re-read the whole thing (editing along the way) and then started typing. Being back at work has meant things are slowing down again, but this time, I’m determined to keep going and have been setting myself targets each week to carry on writing. While I’m not getting as much done as I want to, I can honestly say that I am once again working on my novel.
As to how it is going… To be honest? I don’t know. I need to have a thorough planning session and truly work out where I want this to go because I am not sure that my pacing is right at the moment. When I read other books, I realise things move at a fast pace and I’m not sure that is happening for mine. I think at the moment it’s just a matter of keeping going and I can sort that out after feedback – I don’t want to speed it up and lose characterisation, but I don’t want to bore people with things not happening enough.
The plot is still vague in my mind – I’ve never been good at planning stories. But the more I write, the more the ideas continue to flow and I feel it coming together. That is why I’m determined to keep writing, even just small snippets, to ensure that it doesn’t dry up in my mind again like it did before.
This time, I’m determined to keep aiming for those dreams. One word at a time if I have to.