August 13, 2014
writer, book, Jenna Burtenshaw, introvert, shy, Robin Hobb, retiring, signing, Waterstones
Many of us who are writing have probably dreamed about suddenly being catapulted to fame – the sort of fame now enjoyed (endured?) by Joanne Rowling.
But would such a thing be a triumph, or a terror?
For me, I would hate the idea; love the income, fear the price that comes with it.
As an introvert, I would far rather hide in the background and pay an accomplished actor to be ‘me,’ to press the flesh and face the flashes as a blizzard of questions are launched.
I’m happy to think, imagine, dream and type out my thoughts on my current keyboard, from wherever I happen to be in the world.
I have been to exactly two book signings in my life. One was for my fellow writer and Darlington-dweller, Jenna Burtenshaw, the other was for Robin Hobb, one of my favourite fantasy authors.
Although the attendance at Jenna’s signing was a little smaller than Robin’s, I still wondered what it would feel like to be on the opposite side of the table. It didn’t appeal. Although it would have been nice (I imagined) to speak to people who’d enjoyed my work, the idea of being placed in front of the public sent a cold shiver down my back. I would much rather communicate with an audience on-line than in real life.
Am I alone in this?
Do other writers fear the repercussions of their work achieving a measure of fame?
It’s a question raised by Ben Myers in The Guardian. In the twenty-first century, do writers now have a duty to the public?
If you ask me, I’d rather simply…
August 6, 2014
introvert, journalist, quiet, shy, thinker, writer
Continuing the theme of shy and introverted authors, I happened upon this article ThisDayLive.
It seems, and this is unlikely to surprise anyone, that introverted thinkers can often go on to become accomplished, or even great writers. The article’s author describes herself as ‘…an introvert. That is what I am wired to be, and to write..’
Can you relate to the issues described here? I certainly can!
The Huffington Post goes on to list sixteen famous faces who were (and still are) considered to be introverts. Some of them might surprise you.
In the meantime, shyness notwithstanding, I intend to:
July 30, 2014
celebrate, create, creative, extrovert, introvert, Judith Warner, quiet, shy, Susan Cain, The New York Times, thinker
A book by Susan Cain sheds some light on that quiet section of the population known as the ‘Quiet ones.’
Cain seeks to celebrate the quiet, retiring types and asks why society feels the need to push them into the spotlight – a painfully uncomfortable place for the introvert.
In wondering why we celebrate all that is loud and brash, she proposes that we try to embrace the creativity that lies within the quiet thinkers of our civilisation, rather than despoil their qualities by forcibly herding them into ‘learning pods’ in schools and asking what is ‘wrong’ when introverts don’t ambitiously seek wealth and fame like their co-workers.
Even if you don’t feel drawn to read ‘Quiet,’ read Judith Warner’s synopsis and see if you agree with the way this book is leaning.
Go on, don’t be shy! :D
Introverts unite! …quietly and behind closed doors.
July 18, 2014
CDO, CreateSpace, errors, novel, obsessive, OCD, paperback, printing, self-publish, tyops, typo
Anyone who’s been following my attempts to create a paperback from my eBook will know that I’ve been so very close for such a long, long time.
But last night, I got confirmation that my first paperback had been despatched by Amazon.
All right, I was the one who’d purchased it, but it was for a friend and voluntary beta-reader in Canada. Thanks Michelle!
Perhaps I ought to call her an omega-reader, because this (he says) is going to be the very last set of changes I will apply to the MS. Discussions with my editor (hello Tara!) place the industry-acceptable rate of errors at 0.015%. Mine is currently averaging 0.005% but typos still get under my skin and I hate them and zey vill.not.be.tolerated!!
Not that I’m obsessive or CDO or anything… >.<
(For those that haven’t seen CDO before, it’s like OCD, but the letters are.in.the.correct.order. As they ought to be. :D )
Aaaaanyway, my first paperback has taken flight and ought to arrive within the week. I wait with baited breath for Michelle’s appraisal before I fix the dratted MS for one final time and close the chapter on the first book. Any remaining errors will have to be flagged up by particularly CDO-inclined readers of the future. I will simply smile quietly and say ‘I left that one in there especially for you, you clever thing.’
Oh, PS… I clicked ‘order’ on Tuesday evening (GMT), received a shipping notification the following evening and by Thursday afternoon, the book had arrived in Ontario! This was well inside Createspace’s ‘within 7 days’ estimate. Impressive!
July 14, 2014
A Construct of Angels, Amazon, CreateSpace, debut, edit, novel, paperback, paperbacl CreateSpace, self-edit, self-publish
Well, my second proof copy has arrived from the USA and despite my best hopes, I’m still finding errors in the text. :(
I asked my significant other if she’d read through it for me… a fresh pair of eyes, and all that. However, after five weeks of gathering dust (the book, not me!), I realised I’d have to undertake the task myself. *sigh*
After hundreds of read-throughs, I’m having real trouble concentrating on the text and find myself drifting along with the narrative instead.
Why, I keep wondering, do these text errors continue to plague my MS? I like to think I’m meticulous with my grammer and, speeling. I can only imagine the errors are typos I’ve somehow missed.
True, my typing isn’t perfect. As It gets faster, mistakes begin to appear, so I temper my speed to keep the typos down. However, impatience can sometimes bite and my fingers will get carried away, often typing faster than my brain (that only takes eight words a minute, usually!).
So this week finds me ploughing (yes, that’s how it feels after 500+ reads) through the paperback, hoping to upload and receive a corrected version before the end of July.
I have to – a couple of Floridian friends are keen to see a paperback copy in early August.
Anyway, back to reading…
In the meantime:
July 11, 2014
college, cool, fitting in, geek, learning, lesson, nerd, school
Does it still trouble you that you didn’t fit in well at school? Were you outside the circle of ‘cool kids,’ bullied, ridiculed and cast aside because you were bright?
Well, a recent report now casts doubt and shines light on those of us who suffered through our teenage years.
Read this and feel better about yourself. I did! If the link goes down, try here instead.
I was single-minded in my desire to learn as much as I could during my school years, to the extent that I was banned from the Chemistry, Physics and Engineering Science labs during lunch hours because I was ‘reading too far ahead’ (two years too far, to be precise).
My life at school was hell because I was surrounded by wannabe rebels and pseudo anarchists (this was at the beginning of the punk era in Britain) and learning wasn’t anti-establishment enough for these guys.
Still, I managed to cram in some secret learning along the way, a desire that continues to this day… although I have more trouble remembering stuff than I used to.
I remain, yours, a veritable information sponge.