Tips for a new writer…


Ever thought about writing a book?

Now before we start, I don’t see myself as experienced enough to hand out solid advice, so take these points below as tips based on my past year as a new writer.

Story – Let’s start with the obvious. The backbone of a successful novel in any genre is an intriguing storyline. Keep it real, keep it interesting and throw in a few surprises along the way. If you can come up with even one thing that you believe hasn’t been done before, you’re onto a winner!
Research – I was very lucky to have visited a place of which to base my novel on. This meant that all along I had a very clear picture in my head of the location. 
It’s not just about location. Research everything to do with your idea. Research people behaviour, crimes and the ins and outs of the business you may mention in your book. These things are important.
Time – Find the time to write wherever and whenever only when it is not at the expense of others. Some of my best writing days have come on the train to work each day. No one is too busy to write a novel.
Positivity – surround yourself with people who believe in you and what you are setting out to achieve. Stay positive, it can be a long process! Free yourself of negative intrusions.
Good luck! I can strongly recommend this adventure to anyone willing to take that first step and put pen to paper. That first line is the beginning of something special and the last line is the fitting end to an amazing accomplishment!
Don’t forget to keep an eye out for my blurb to ‘A Hole in Serenity’! Thank you as always to you all for your amazing support.
Take care,

A date for your diary…

  It’s now a matter of weeks… My edited manuscript will hopefully be back in my hands by the 5th March! It’s then back over to me to give it the final proofread before sending it to my formatter to be converted into an e book. That will only take a matter of days and then finally… It’s ready!

So, I’ve decided to release my blurb to you all, my faithful followers, on 19th March with a view to release ‘A Hole in Serenity’ very shortly after!
The countdown’s begun and the end is in sight, it’s almost time to bring my book into the light. 
The wait is almost over, we’ve all come so far, so I thank each and every one of you, I’ll meet you at the bar!!

I genuinely could not have done this without you.
Take care and watch this space…

Letting go and moving on…

Well… I’ve done it! Today I finished the second phase of editing ‘A Hole in Serenity.’ It has now left my hands and has been passed on to the relevant people involved in the next stage of the process. 

So how does a writer let go of his baby? The work of art that he or she has privately sculpted into something they believe in. I’ll tell you how, with a great deal of difficulty.
I now have to sit back, wait and lock my printed manuscript away. I believe a writer could go on and on and on editing. There is always something that could be improved whether it be a sentence that could flow better or a word that could be changed to a more descriptive version. At some point a writer has to just let go! Only then can the next adventure begin.
In a few weeks I should hopefully have back yet another improved version before its passed over for its final checks before d day! I will keep you all updated of course. 
Thank you as always to everyone who has shown their support along the way. Without your continued interest in this novel, it would make the process a lot more challenging. Please do continue to spread the word if you can and do get in touch with any feedback or comments that you may have.
Take care,

How writing can change your way of thinking…

Since I entered this magical, fictional world of literacy almost a year ago to the day, I have started to look at people and other elements in life differently. I’ve started to take note of people’s actions, dialogue and situations with a lot more intensity and concentration.

They say there is a story in everyone and that each and every one of us are different and that’s true, people have unique expressions and mannerisms. When you are face to face with someone you almost spot them instantly. The same cannot be said for a book making the whole process a lot harder.
In films, I’ve started taking a real interest in plots and how a storyline develops. I’ve found that I sometimes dislike the way something has been done and notice mistakes where others may not. It’s eye opening when you dig deeper into a storyline and begin to dissect it bit by bit.
So whether this new found interest in people and story’s has a benefit, only time will tell. I guess being able to criticise storylines etc can only be a good thing. Watch and learn Mark, watch and learn.
Thank you to each and every one of you for your continued support. I will have completed my version of the editing process in the next few days and then it’s out of my hands and almost time to hand it over to you!
Take care and thank you for your patience! Please do feel free to get in touch if you have any questions or can offer any advice or feedback.

Book two… Where to start?

So I know you are all probably thinking “Mark, come on. Let’s have a read of the first one before you start talking about a second” but I have already been busy scribbling down ideas for my follow up to ‘A Hole in Serenity’. As a writer, I now understand the importance of the notebook. My phone has become my mobile notepad with ideas being recorded in all sorts of weird and wonderful locations. Some of which I should probably keep to myself!

So how does the long process of writing a 60,000 word novel begin?
I understand each writer may have their own individual way of working and planning there story so I shall fill you in as to how my process begins.
The first thing is the story. A successful book is obviously nothing without a creative and most importantly unique idea. A writer has to conjure up a plot that is somehow like no other. As you can probably imagine, there are only so many ways that you can kill someone off. Every other idea that you may read is just a variation of how it’s been done. This not only applies to ‘killing people off’ but also other plot ideas. So now you see that it’s suddenly not so easy to come up with something so unique.
Secondly, you need to create believable characters.   

You, the audience have to feel like you know them personally. They have to be described in a way that you can almost see them. Most importantly for a writer is self belief in his/her characters. If I don’t believe in them then my readers won’t either.
I believe I may have mentioned in earlier posts that I am what’s called ‘a pantster’. I only do a certain amount of planning from the start and as I go. Most of my ideas have come to me along the way. This allows me to change the direction of the story as I am hit with these new ideas.
So, once you have all of the above, it’s simple. Just write! Let the words, scenes and creative inspiration flow. Breathe air into your characters and watch as your story begins to unfold.
As always, thank you to my most recent followers and those who have been following for a while. Your support is still very much appreciated.
Take care and I’ll be back with another update soon.

What a year…

67 countries and fast approaching 500 followers through my Facebook page and blog.

Wow! What a year! When I made the decision to start writing, I could have only hoped that this many people would be behind me. The interest in what I’m doing has far surpassed any expectations that I had. I’ve been in touch with a handful of very successful authors and spoken with a number of fellow writers along the way, all of whom have been a big inspiration. 
A huge thank you to friends and family for your support, a big thank you also has to go to my colleagues for putting up with my never ending ‘novel talk’ and each and every follower whom I have not yet had the pleasure of meeting for your loyalty on this journey.
I know there’s been a doubter or two along the way but I’m pretty sure you won’t be questioning anything now!
It has been a challenge to find the time to write but as long as it does not come at the expensive of others, I have some advice. If you have ever thought about writing a novel, poetry, short stories or anything else for that matter, do it! And don’t let anything hold you back! If you really want it, you’ll make the time.

So I’ll be back soon with an update but I have almost finished editing the first draft! We’re not far off now!
Take care one and all,