August 31, 2022

I wrote this article which I read at speaking engagements.  I hope its funny and motivational.


I am a woman alone.  My children are grown up and have families of their own and I am retired.


My life is wonderful, exciting and I am experiencing areas of life I would never indulge in, or have the nerve to indulge in.  How am I doing this?  I write.


I am the gorgeous and fiesty Clemmie whose figure just holds her dress in the right places.  She is loved by every man who sees her in my novel THE DEVIL’S TEARS.    I am the successful Jenny who is rich, American and mixes with the American royalty of  Film Stars and Senators in my novel SILENT NIGHT. 


I have travelled to places and experienced fear, love and humour with people I shall never meet.  I live in an altered state when writing and it is thrilling, exciting, and makes me want to write some more to see where I am going next.


How many people say they would like to write a book but never get started.  How many people write the first chapter and leave it.  There is a book in all of us, so I have been told.


I am a 1960s woman.  I married when I was 19 years old, had three children, loved them and nurtured them and waved them goodbye as they left to lead their own lives.  This was about the same time I waved goodbye to my marriage of 35 years.


What is a woman to do when the only life she has known disappears?  Some turn to chocolate, some to drink, some might find solace in a toy boy but all are either fattening, lonely or very tiring. 


I had a friend who took solace in a toy boy.  It ruined her health.  She was a walking wreck.  God made us energetic in our youth and sanguine in later years.  After a while she dreaded going home to her youthful Adonis who thought any comments alluding to sleep and bed meant rampant sex.   The final straw was the suggestion that they have a weekend away where they could make love all day and night when all she wanted to do was sit in her pyjamas and watch television and sleep.


I see this time as my time.  I have always wanted to write.  I started years ago by making up stories I would tell the children at a Playgroup.  I dabbled with some short stories when my youngsters’ become teenagers.  The novel started in a moment of boredom at work when there was nothing to do.  I got hooked and I haven’t looked back.


Divorce is horrible and I could escape into a wonderland of characters and situations that I would never have dared to enter.  I did it, I finished my first novel.  You have to be brave and resilient.  I couldn’t find an Agent.  They were either too busy with existing clients or didn’t deal in my type of fiction.   I celebrated my 60th Birthday year by self publishing with a well researched publisher who I have found to be incredibly professional.  My book was my child and now fully formed, I wanted to nudge out into the world.  I want everyone to love my child as I do.


THE DEVIL’S TEARS  is my first book and published by Matador (Troubadour Publishers)  It was the most amazing experience.  There was proof reading and a cover to be designed and discussed.  There was something to write about the book to go on the back.  I had a ball working with my publishers on this.  Every month there was something to be pleased about.  The finished product made me proud and okay, I cried, so shoot me, I am a woman.


Oh yes, it cost me.  I am a 60s child and resourceful.  I had a small pension that I converted to pay for the book.   It was worth every penny of the £5,000 it eventually cost which includes media work, going into catalogues etc.  Nothing is free these days.  I get to spend my free time looking on Amazon to see who has left me a comment on my book and who else is selling it.  All the clicks on certain websites must be all mine.


I have a small following of readers.  My first book is a page turner, you want to know what is going to happen.  There is a supernatural twist at the end.  I wrote the type of book I like to read.  I like an exciting read with believable characters.  I want to become breathless with the danger of situations and I want to feel and experience all the emotions.  I love a twist at the end.  I am told my book has to be read twice.  Once quickly to find out what is going to happen next and the second time to take it slowly and enjoy all the nuances and twists and turns of the story.


My second book SILENT NIGHT was published on 4th January 2010.  I again had a wonderful and exciting time with choosing a cover and seeing the book coming to life.  The second book is very different from the first.  Again, a page turner.  It starts with Christopher tied up in a dank underground room waiting for them” to come back and kill him.  We find out what has brought this handsome, seemingly rich, middleclass successful man to this position.  Will he live, you have to wait for the twist at the end to find out.


I so enjoyed writing a stand alone novel but I then realised I wanted more.  So I started a Detective Series called THE SINGHING DETECTIVE (yes the spelling is correct lol) and the fourth in the series has just been published called A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE. 


I am an ordinary woman.  Even my 60s youth was not exciting in the flower power, drugs and pill ways.  I was, like many other young girls, repressed at home and threatened with the shame that could be brought on a family if it was found I had been wanton in any way.  Like many young women, I married young at 19 years and took on domesticity and had a life that was set for life.  No jobs are for life and that goes sometimes for marriages.  What is the constant in all of this?  Yourself.


I am a woman alone and proud if it.  “If only” is not something I will ever say.  I have the time now to write and it is the most liberating, fulfilling and joyous pastime.


I have made myself proud and my children proud of me.  I want my books to be a success but I think I am a success already.  I have done something I can leave my children.  Who knows what anyone is capable of until they try.   “He who dares wins”  It is not just a Delboy saying, its true. (I know, the SAS said it first).  Give it a go.  Put an idea down on paper.  It could be the start of a big adventure.  If you are really, really lucky, it could be your way of earning a living.  Who knows tomorrow my books might be famous.  You have to be in it to win it!!


I can call myself an author and that feels very good.  I have proved that if you are brave, if you want something badly, are resourceful and keep at it, anything is possible. 


Good luck in your writings.  Everyone is looking for a good book to read and that could be yours.