The Saturday Blog.
I've been having a chat with a few other blogers, I felt I needed advice to keep things interesting and just generally how do to this right.
Here's what I've come up with, and I'd love to know your thoughts. Firstly I'm going to be posting twice a week from now on. Every Tuesday and Saturday, I'll try to alternate between a serious one and a fun one. Until I fully get the hang of things the posts might be a little short, but, they will get longer.
I've also updated my cover and profile picture. So now it looks much less generic. I've made a great start I think. But what I need is feedback. What do you think could make this place better, what would you like to see?
Well that's that bit done, now on to the main part of today's blog.
A few weeks ago I did something I'd been told I should never do, I read reviews of my last book Red on the Moon. I've been so used to writing fan-fiction and getting reviews to each chapter direct to my email. They weren't always good, but more often than no they at least pointed out what they liked about what they were reading, or to let me know where I'd made mistakes. (I do make them more often than I'd like.)
Most of the reviews were supportive and enjoyed the story. One however stood out. It felt more like a personal attack than an honest review of something they've read. The reviewer seamed to find something bad to say about every aspect. But the thing that actually managed to upset me was when they said that I should get an editor. Well I do have an editor and she works very hard to help me.
I've loved to write all my life, creating stories. However, I do have problems. My brain betrays me. I'm classed as severely dyslexic, it effects my concentration my spelling my reading and my mathematics. (you should see all of this before I run spell checker, it's full of red lines.) Every time I finish writing something, even if I never show it to anyone, I feel a scene of achievement. I'm not saying that my mistakes should be instantly forgiven. By all means point out when I make them, but, there is a way to say things so as not to be so hateful.
I'm lucky, I'm a stubborn old cow. When I set my mind to something I will keep doing it, even just for my own sake, even if I'd never been published I'd keep on writing. But something dyslexia does that people don't often talk about, is it robs you of is self confidence, I'm constantly surprised when someone tells me they like my work.
There are so many bright young writers out there who lack the confidence to try for fear of rejection and failure. It is so easy to listen to the one bad comment rather than the many good ones. There is much better education nowadays when it comes to dyslexia. Teachers are trained to teach in a way that a brain that thinks sideways needs to learn. But no one thinks to tell children that, 'It can be done, you will get there.' and they need to hear that. it breaks my heart to think of people not trying because they haven't had the encouragement and help to achieve their dreams.
I don't know this is true of all writers, but it is true of many. We live for people to read and enjoy our work, we constantly want to get better. So please do tell us what you think, the good and the bad, but do it in a constructive way. Even if a book isn't to your taist, someone, has spend a hell of a lot of time and put a lot of themselves into the writing of what you just read. Spent sleepless nights waiting to hear from publishers, enduring rejections, struggling with edits. Writing a book is not easy, it is a labour of love and we wouldn't have it any other way.
It's taken me a few week after reading that review to get back to actually being able to write again. I have managed it in the last few days, and on Tuesday, I'll tell you all about it.