I started seriously writing at the age of 23. By then I had my first degree, and a masters, and I’d toyed with the idea of a few professions. Nothing really held my interest. I’m awful at focusing on a thing I’m not captivated by.
I can’t remember where the decision came from – I’d always enjoyed writing, but actually writing books was something which happened to other people.
My first attempt was a steampunk story. It was called The Death of Yantian Drow and it ended up being 140,000 words long. That’s an insane number, looking back on it. I forced myself to write 1000 words a day and somehow I kept up!
I still have it saved somewhere, and I imagine I’ll take a look at it again at some point. It never even made it to the proof reading stage.
My second attempt was called Spire and I even made it to the submitting stage. I have a page full of rejections from agencies! It was quite the learning curve. As with anything – rejections will wear you down after a while. Here’s the important thing – don’t let it jade you. Don’t become bitter. Bitterness is the enemy of life.
As a break I tried short stories and actually had a little success with that. A story of mine called Husk will be published as part of a collection some time this year.
Bolstered by this I turned back to long form writing. By this point I had a dozen little projects half made and I realized I needed more focus. To this end I wrote up a list of those I really wanted to get finished. You can read a little about these here.
Coming next month I’ll be dipping my toe into the dark waters of self publishing. This will be a collection of short stories called Death Echo and will come out on Amazon.
Depending on the experience I might stick with self publishing, or return to the wheel of submissions – or both! … Probably both.
Where was I going with this?
Why do I write?
I like to make things up and I dislike reality.
That’s not to say I dislike MY reality. I have brilliant friends and a partner who couldn’t be more perfect – but reality is generally a bit disappointing. There are less dragons and spaceships around than I hoped there would be.
Writing is my way of coming to terms with that.
I write – not because it’s the only thing I’m good at – but because it’s the only thing I WANT to be good at. If I’m good at writing then I can really knuckle down on ignoring reality and building my own little world.
If others end up wanting to come with me to these little worlds then that’s even better.
Sorry for the self indulgent ramble… everyone needs one now and then!
Over to you – why do you write?