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Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Getting Started

What are you afraid of? I ask myself. It's just putting words on paper. Pick up a pen and get on with it. It's not as easy as that though and it doesn't matter how many times I've done it before, starting something new (like this blog), is always a bit scary. So this is what I tell myself:-
                                              IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE PERFECT

Once I have resigned myself to writing rubbish, it doesn't feel so bad. A page of rubbish can always be revised and improved upon but a blank page is just like holding up the white flag of surrender to my inner critic.

I have been writing for nearly fifteen years, through happy times and sad. I have learned a lot along the way. Writing teaches you all sorts of things about yourself and about other people too. In this blog I plan to write about the things I love and hopefully, some of them will be things which you love too.
They include:- gardening, cats, reading, reflexology, walking, travel, the countryside, cakes and puddings, art, friendship and of course writing.

Sometimes I write in an attic room with a view of the sky and a beautiful Cedar tree whose colour changes according to the weather and the light. But sometimes I write in my kitchen or at the
dining room table or sitting up in bed. In the summer I write at the top of the garden hidden from
the world by high privet hedges and bushy rhododendrons. I have written in the car, on trains and
planes and in factory foyers whilst waiting for my husband. I prefer peace and quiet to write but on
days when that isn't possible I grab segments of time, drink tea and do the best I can.

I always begin a project by writing longhand. Here is my Parker ink pen which I have had since I
was 11 years old.

I strongly believe in the magic of the continuous connection with the paper, the forming of the letters, the movement of the arm and the flow of the pen which contributes to getting those initial ideas out into the open. It won't work for everyone but it works for me. Only when the story is established do I continue on the computer.

Perhaps the most important thing I have learned over the years is the important of faith. To have
faith in yourself and faith in the story which you are trying to tell is essential if you are to survive
as a writer. Sometimes to keep that faith can be hard so to have others who believe in what you do is invaluable when times are tough. Ultimately being a committed writer is about not giving up or giving in. I love words. I love stories. I love to write. It is a big part of who I am and I hope that
on the whole it makes me a better person.

Thank-you for reading this blog and I'll finish with a lovely quote from Martin Luther King, Jr.

Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.