Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Writing matters

I feel obliged to put myself under some pressure with this post. The fact is that a finished and
partly edited first draft of Chance of Reign now exists. This being so, I must resist the temptation to go back to the manuscript and add further material. The temptation is real, given that I am constantly gaining new insights with regard to the year 1936 with all its anomalies and ambiguities.

By chance I have also just completed a final edit of TheodoraLand so that's another manuscript done and dusted... not to be re-visited either.

Now I am at a juncture at which I may not... as I have so often in the past...simply throw myself as quickly as possible into a brand new writing project. It would be an easy way out. I would mean that soon after waking and firing up my laptop I can take refuge in a story-world, populated by characters who become more and more real as the days pass. It would mean I would be back at workThat is the crucial issue... the notion that my fiction writing is work. True, it is labour which is not remunerated (earnings in the past year from my Kindle edition sales amounting to less the cost of a pack of cigarettes). In the absence of paid translation assignments (distressingly few at the moment) what shall I do if not retreat into writing more stuff which will go as undiscovered as the novels I have previously published? The answer is surely that I must now concentrate on finding readers! In the book by Dorothy L. Sayers that I have most recently read she coined the phrase "It pays to advertise" and what she wrote in 1933 is surely true more than eighty years later. Once and for all I must make a real effort to step forth from the comfort of my garret and find ways of making my writing pay.

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