I’m definitely an insecure writer. You name me a -living – writer who isn’t.
We IWSG members are asked to post on our blogs on the first Wednesday of every month, about our doubts, the fears we have conquered, our struggles and triumphs, offering words of encouragement for fellow-writers who might be struggling. We also visit others in the group – hence the Twitter handle and hashtag in the tags to this blog post.
The biggest fear I have conquered this month is a very practical one: how to travel from my home, deep in the Essex countryside, to the ACW Writers Retreat in the depths of the Yorkshire countryside. Neither I, nor my ancient Ford Ka, could face the 250 mile drive. Then, in the middle of May, my wonderful friend, Fiona, from Leeds offered me a lift from Leeds to the retreat house. (Thank you so much, Fiona.) I therefore booked a train from Peterborough to Leeds, but the plan to do the two-hour drive from home to Peterborough and to park my ancient banger at Peterborough station for two nights was starting to appear more and more expensive and less and less workable. However, today, my husband announced that he is visiting a musician friend in Bury St Edmunds on the day I’m travelling. So he’s driving me to Bury (an hour’s drive, in his much better car), from where I can catch a connecting train to Peterborough. The ACW Retreat’s a week on Friday, 16 June. Next month, I’ll tell you how it went. For the first time since booking it, I’m really looking forward to it.
This month we IWSG-ers are also asked Did you ever say “I quit”? If so, what happened to make you come back to writing? My answer is Yes, twice. First, a long time ago, when I rattled off a very hurried novel, in the space of six months, and entered it for a national and very prestigious prize. When the typed manuscript plopped back on my doormat after less than a week, on my husband’s birthday, I howled, but now I’m so pleased it got rejected, because, when I think about what I wrote and how I wrote it, I squirm. The second occasion was when I wrote about a local holiday club, where I was helping. When my article published in the local rag, about one sentence of mine was used and the rest, which the staff writer supplied, was inaccurate and misleading. The holiday club leader had to apologise to the other helpers.
What got me back? After the passage of quite a bit of time, the stories that kept going round and round in my bed, and needed to be put into words. One of the deals I have made with myself in the last few years is that I will never quit again.