Welcome to my second blog, I was beginning to think my first blog had disappeared into cyberspace. Then I had a comment, it made my day to hear from someone who read my story. Anyway, onward and upward!. I left school when I was fourteen years old, I should have stayed until I was fifteen, I ran away to London and lived with my uncle. My Mum and Dad worried about me, they knew the problems I was having at school and that I was safe with my uncle and aunt. My uncle had a shop and I helped stacking shelves and we went out in his old van delivering orders. This was when I began to realize I was not as stupid as my teachers led me to think. After about nine months I returned home to Mum and Dad. I got an apprenticeship working in a kitchen. This was when I knew I was not stupid, I just had problems with words and reading. What I learned working in a kitchen is if you listened to people with more experience and knowledge than you I could learn. I could never get on with recipe books but if someone showed me I was OK. I then got a job in The Merchant Navy working for P & O. I travelled the world on an ocean liner working in the galley. It was great getting paid to go to exotic places, we did the Australia run, we cruised from Sydney to New Zealand, Fiji and Japan. You need to have a certain type of mentality to stay at sea for long, and I didn't have it so after a while I left.
Back To The Novel
After I had my dream about the start of my novel, I couldn't think of anything else, compelled to write, I got up most mornings before six am. Made a cup of coffee and started writing. It was not hard finding the words to write, but with my lack of writing skills and my dyslexia I just wrote what I was thinking. So the first 25000 words were one long sentence, no punctuation or paragraphs, I had never heard of a speech mark or dialogue tags. I then showed it to a friend, he pointed out the obvious. So I started looking on the Internet and read as best I could about punctuation. It took a long time to go through all I had written. Then I was soon back on track and started writing again. I found Scrivener and that helped me, I only use the basics and look on You-tube for tutorials which are helpful.
I am not a planner when writing, I am a panster, I become the character I am writing about. I see the story through their eyes, I never know what will happen next in my story. This works for me and I find it exciting. Sometimes I find myself in a place where it is hard to see the way through but something always shows me the way forward.
It took me seven weeks and three days to finish my novel. 93000 words I thought that was all I had to do. Through the Internet I found someone who gave me advice. She explained about developmental editors, copy editors and proofreaders. She also said I needed to get up and running with social networking. This was all new to me. I had a Facebook page which I looked at once a month. No Twitter account and as for other social networking. Google plus, Pinterest, Linkedin and Instagram I had never heard of them.
When I was an antique dealer I had a website so I did know a little about that. Luckily I kept my domain name www.stephengane.com so on need to buy a new one. Social networking takes up so much time, hours go without being aware of it and not seeming to achieve much. I started a twitter account and lots of people followed me. I thought This is great, but after doing it for a couple of months I wonder what advantage there is. It’s great getting in touch with other authors on twitter but it’s impossible to read every tweet. I have started a list of the followers who give good advice and that is working better but I am sure I am missing a lot.
I downloaded a book from Amazon "How To Write A Novel" by Nathan Bransford. I had to read it a couple of times to understand it. I found it interesting, it seemed to be saying there is a formula to writing a novel, but I just write what comes into my head.