Why exactly pains, trains, and inkstains

I wanted to start this blog to chronicle my attempts to do something stupid, hard, and emotionally ruinous. No, not auditioning for X factor or climbing Mt Everest (except metaphorically). In fact, after something like twenty years of scribbling, I’m trying to become a published writer. And it’s not easy! I hear of nothing but publishing cuts and the impossibility of finding an agent. I hear how even published writers struggle to keep themselves in pens. But despite all this it’s the only thing I really want to do.

 I’ve written two novels to date. One has been longlisted for the Sony Reader award, results in December. I’m looking for an agent – any takers?

Pains – aside from the obvious deep emotional trauma of rejection (think X factor), writing can cause a whole array of physical ailments. I have such bad shoulder pain I scare younger people away from desk jobs. I get serious wrist pain from excessive typing, and after a detached retina a month back, pretty full-on headaches from too much screen-time. Plus those paper-cuts can be hazardous. Boo hoo, right? Maybe I’ll do a misery memoir instead.

Trains – I work in London but don’t live there, so I spend much of my time listening to other people’s tinny music and dodgy TMI phone calls. This is not all bad as I’ve written large parts of both books on my commute. If I do get published I’ll have to say a big thank you to South Eastern Trains for the frequent delays that extend my writing time – couldn’t have done it without you! I’ll do it anywhere though. Sometimes I feel like I’m in a Dr Seuss book – I like to edit on the train/ I like to edit on a plane/ And in the bath, and in my bed/ And when I’m bored, inside my head…

Inkstains – at any given time about 20% of my surface area will be covered in ink. I also spill tea, water, and other staining substances on both my MS and myself (The quest for the perfect pen, with a balance of full lush inkiness, yet quick-drying properties, goes on).

 So stay tuned and I’ll keep you posted on my torturous quest. As the X factor auditionees would say, it’ll most likely be a rollercoaster of emotions and I’ll give it 110% – unless I’m tired, or the train’s late, or I decide to do something easier like tame lions or go base-jumping.

Can you spot the tea stain?
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2 Comments Add yours

  1. petermcgowan says:

    It may not help your carpel tunnel but its good to let it all out good luck as always I will follow all your musings with pride

  2. George Green says:

    I’m listening with mixed feelings of admiration and guilt at your productivity on trains, planes and in the bath. I always find I think and write better with other things going on around me. The blog is a great idea, I’ll be listening.

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