Cautious introduction

I am a writer.

I have had very little published: odds and ends of poetry in school and parish magazines; some educational texts; an academic review; a few flashfics and book reviews in online zines.

I write in more than one genre: non-fiction (mostly travel and cookery); children’s stories; reviews; poetry; adult fantasy/romance. I have abandoned the academic stuff; more about that in a later post, perhaps. Most of my output has so far only been read by people reading my various blogs. Because I move from genre to genre I use pen names – no sense upsetting, worrying and confusing the readers! My nearest and dearest know who I am, as do the bank and the tax office should they ever need to. Other than that I can’t imagine that my various personas are anyone else’s business and so I run a mile from Facebook and from Google in all its manifestations. They make it impossible to keep pen names in completely separate compartments without a great deal of deception and hard work. A writer’s nightmare!

I have other blogs where I share personal stuff, and the travel and cookery aspects of my work. I use one of them for fanfiction which I also write under another name. I have a website, too, where I keep these things accessible.

Here I will be sharing my thoughts mainly on the adult fiction and perhaps the poetry. Of course, sometimes the genres overlap and perhaps have something to offer each other. In that case I will refer to them, but you need not, on the whole, expect recipes or travelogues. I won’t be sharing the actual stories in full, either, just the experiences, problems and joys of creation.

I have retired from teaching (mostly language and literature) and have been writing fiction quite assiduously for about six years. I now have quite a body of work that needs to be submitted somewhere or other. I don’t suffer from writer’s block but I do suffer from submitter’s block. I know all about the idea that you need luck, to be in the right inbox at the right time, etc. Why should I be that lucky? I have never had much of a gambling streak! You also, I believe, need persistence. Well, I persist with my writing…

I have been following a number of blogs and reading books about self-publishing, particularly e-book publishing. I have just about decided that 2012 is the year when I will try my hand at that. Hard work to make a go of it, yes, but all under my control and not requiring any element of luck After all, if nobody buys my stories it’s hardly the end of the world. I know my friends like them, and I won’t have spent anything other than time.

I will share my journey, including set-backs and learning curves, here.

There! That’s me, and the purpose of this blog. I’m hoping to make friends, give people the benefit of my experiences and learn from their comments en route.