Adventures in writing – a personal journey by Stuart G Yates, part 14.

Firstly, an apology for being late, but I came off my bike in the morning and it shook me a little. Nothing broken, except my pride. I was feeling a little down before that, and the spill only served to make it worse.

I got to thinking and posed the question to myself, is it all worth it? It takes a lot of effort to write a book. From the initial idea, the rough scribbles of scenes, the planning, the writing of endless redrafts…Then, finally, when it is published and the cover looks good enough to eat…nobody buys it. I don’t do this for the money, I have to stress. If I did I would have long ago dropped by the wayside. No, I do it for the sheer love of it, but it would be nice to get some recognition. I have 14 books published now – 10 Young Adult novels, and four cross-over/adult ones – and I would say I’ve probably sold less than 50 books to people I don’t know. So, really, in all seriousness, I have to ask, what is the point?

Just the other night, I was watching a music-video and there was a tiny scene in it which really made me think. I began to formulate a story in my head, the first tiny seeds of something, something I could develop. And it struck me, right there – the reason. The reason I write. I write because I am a creative person; I love conjuring up stories, living them, immersing myself in a new world of my imagination. It doesn’t matter that I don’t sell any copies. In fact, I am seriously considering giving up all of the social network business. It’s never going to improve anything. But to write, well, I simply have to. There is no argument about that.


The Pawnbroker, set in Victorian Birkenhead, is a real tale of terror.

The Pawnbroker, set in Victorian Birkenhead, is a real tale of terror.


I set my next couple of books in my home town. The last of my trilogy of Island Animal Rescue novellas was set in Birkenhead, as was The Pawnbroker. This book had begun life way back as a twenty thousand word novella when I lived on Alderney. I had an idea to churn out dozens of such books, all tiny ones, fast-paced, easy to read. But the story wouldn’t let me. After I had re-written it, developed the theme, made it so much bigger, such a feeling of achievement swept over me, but even so something was changing inside. The need to write much more gritty and ‘grown-up’ books gnawed away at me. I planned a cross-over book that would appeal to adults as well as teenagers. It was time to reach out.


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