Monthly Archives: May 2013

Adventures in writing – a personal journey by Stuart G Yates. A reaction against being ‘self righteous’.

Straight off, what I’m going to say is going to upset quite a few people.

But not Henning Mankell, or Cormac McCarthy, my two author heroes.

I was told the other day that I am ‘self righteous’ and ‘a hypocrite’. When I first read those comments, after the initial shock, a few thoughts rushed through my mind on how to respond. Well, I had some choices.

One, the obvious reaction I suppose, was to become defensive and angry. So, I hastily sent my indignant reply. ‘Who the hell do you think you are, talking to me like that?’ A perfectly natural response because, in this particular case, I had absolutely no idea what had brought this on.

I’m a member of a few writing forums, most of which are fine, and many of the posts are thought provoking, interesting and engender varied responses. I’m not a self-published author, and never will be. I commented on one of the recent forums that spouts off about the wonders of SP as opposed to Traditional Publishing, how agents rip you off, and the big guns are only interested in you if you are a ‘celebrity’ or a sports star. Well, I don’t subscribe to that view. I believe, whole-heartedly, that companies such as Harper know what they are doing. If an agent picks you up, it is because you are good, that your words touch a chord. I shudder when I hear some people declaring that they have been rejected X number of times, and so have sought the self-published route. They are happy. And, I suppose for them, that is fine.

It wouldn’t be for me.

I happened to say on this particular forum that I still believed that traditional publishing was the only way to go if you wish to become a professional author.

Hence, the self-righteous moniker.

I also happened to mention that my latest book, ‘ROADKILL’ is now published and available.


The cover of my latest thriller, set on Bodmin Moor in Cornwall, and guaranteed to make you want to keep reading right to the end.

What I unfortunately omitted from this declaration was that the book had been published by a publisher, that I hadn’t paid a single penny for any part of the process.

Hence my being called ‘a hypocrite’ because, of course, it was assumed I had self-published. When I pointed this fact out to the idiot who had lambasted me, she replied with a very badly written apology which said ,’It was only a joke, tongue and cheek’. Yes, you read that, ‘tongue and cheek’. This from a self-published author.

It was later that I realised that, in all truth, there a lot of disillusioned people out there. And a huge swell of arrogance.

So, let me ask, why on earth don’t these authors try and get taken up by a publisher, one who will edit the book with you, sort out the ISBNs, the blurb, the cover…and all of it for nothing? What is wrong with people that they think that all publishers charge money? None of mine do, and one of them is so brilliant and forward-looking that they actually market the book too. I read about many self-published authors trawling around for companies to publish their book for them, and they pay for the service! WHY??? I’m absolutely perplexed, befuddled and speechless at this.

Rubbing salt in the wounds, the amount of ‘How to be a successful author’ books which are appearing all over the place simply beggars belief. We went through all this years ago. I remember the mail shots, the ads in the local press, the ubiquitous ‘BE YOUR OWN BOSS’ and retire to the Maldives in ten years. Maybe even five. How? Well, by selling cleaning products door to door, working from home, selling this, doing that, etc, etc. I even went to one such seminar. Would you believe it? Me! Some guy at work asked me if I was looking forward to retirement. I did a double take. ‘What?’ He invited me to a meeting, at some guy’s house, where I would learn something ‘very interesting and important’. Yeah right. I sat there and listened to the usual bilge. Environmentally friendly cleaning products, the thing of the future. How to build up your own business, control your destiny, etc, etc. It sounded great. So great I still haven’t seen any of those products on the shelf of any shelf in any shop in the thirty-plus years since I went to that meeting. It’s all balls. And now it’s happening to the business of writing. Since the advent of Kindle, writing is becoming just like any other self-employed business, with tag lines such as ‘how to win your market’, ‘have you achieved your goals’, ‘what to do when nobody wants to buy what you’ve written’. Actually, that last one is pure fantasy, but I tend to think all of them are. And the ones who peddle this rubbish, they all seem to be the same sort of person. I take one look and want to run. The sad thing is, the more people become desperate to see their name in ‘print’ the more these sharks will make money.

So, take a big breath.

I’ll repeat it, writing is NOT a ‘get rich quick scheme’, but so many think it is. It is damned hard work. AND, not only do you have to be a capable wordsmith, you also have to have a very vivid imagination, coupled with knowledge of how to plot and structure stories which will engage your reader. If you have those, then write. And when you have your book, and you’ve polished it to the nth degree, submit it to agents. And if you do not have success there, submit it to independent publishers. If you do not find success there, well…time to pop it in the bottom drawer and do something else creative. These professional people know what they are doing. They’ve been doing it for a long time. Take the hint, if it comes. Please.

Harsh words, but not self-righteous. I write every day, and every day I learn a little bit more about this wonderful occupation called writing. I create, and my prime motivator is for people to enjoy my stories, not to make money. But one thing is absolutely certain – I’ll never self-publish, even if my next forty or fifty books never find a home.

For those not too upset, I write fiction, and my work can be found on my websites, on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Read my ‘About Me’ page to find out a little more.

Thanks for dropping by, and carry on reading!

And if you’re on FaceBook, I’m being interviewed live next Thursday by Fran Lewis, so why not eavesdrop for a while. Details on her page.




Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Adventures in Writing – a personal journey by Stuart G Yates…how I plan.

In this blog, I thought people might like to see the different ways I plan a story. I say ‘different ways’ as I never follow a set plan as such, and I often experiment.

First thing, when an idea comes to me – and that could be any number of things – if I get that ‘buzz’ then I’m pretty well certain the story will begin to evolve.

I invariably have the end in my mind, and write towards that. However, any number of twists and turns might occur so at some stage I set down a plan. Sometimes, I do this on a piece of paper, and I make a list of around 10 essential scenes or incidents. Here is the plan I scribbled down for an unfinished story featuring Paul Chaise, my hero in ‘Burnt Offerings’. It will be the third in the series (as the 2nd is in the redrafting stage as we speak!). It may not make much sense, as this is only the initial mind-mapping.

1.       Packs off Richard Porterhouse on the plane, after making a ‘deal’ over trouble being over-looked. They tell him where Linny is and he goes to find her.

2.       Linny is not there, she’s been bought out by some nutter who is buying up property left, right and centre. PC asks around and finds out some interesting stuff.

3.       This nutter wrote a software programme, sold it to Microsoft for millions and now wants to become a latter day feudal baron.


And so it goes on. As you can see, it is not highly detailed, and there is an awful lot of story-writing to do to fill in the gaps, etc. It is only an outline, and can grow and grow. This one got to 16 such mini-outlines.

I usually look to get down at least 60,000 words before I look at the serious work of editing. Often ideas continue to come to me during these re-writes and although I cut and change a great deal, that 60,000 becomes 80,000 without any real trouble.


Another way I have of working is to use a spider-diagram or ‘mind-map’ as the new parlance calls it. Here is one I used for the second book to feature ‘Don Luis’, who is the mayor of a small Spanish village in the 17th century. I’ve neatened it up here, as I usually scribble it down using any old piece of paper I can find.

I usually put the main event in the centre, and everything spreads outwards from that. I find this effective when plotting a murder mystery, which this particular story is.

mind map


Now this can grow and grow and grow, and I’ve merely included here an idea of what I sometimes use. I find it a good way of linking all the disparate threads.

I sometimes use Scrivener, which is a great way of organising ideas, chapters, characters, etc. But I’m still learning and always make lots of mistakes.

So, what about those ideas? I’ll use a recent book of mine in an attempt to illustrate how my fuddled imagination works…

When I wrote ‘Splintered Ice,’ which is set in New Brighton on the Wirral my starting point was me. My time in school, in my last year at Mosslands. But Jed, the hero, had to be older than I was, so I set it in 1972, and Jed was 18. At the same point in history, I was 15.


Set in New Brighton in 1972, Splintered Ice is a fast-paced, tightly woven thriller with a new twist on every page.

The plan was to write a series of thrillers, set 5 years apart, that would trace his life right up to the present day. He’d get himself in all sorts of scrapes, just as I did, and the books would be populated with all the people and places I knew in and around Wallasey. So far so good. I had the story all set, with the opening in the school dining room, and the ubiquitous bully stealing the other kids’ food. This often happened to me. The difference with Jed, as opposed to me, is that he won’t stand for it. That’s the great thing about being a writer; your characters do what you tell them to do. Well, from there he goes down to Central Park and sees a man fall into the lake, which is covered with a thin sheet of ice. He dives in after him, and from that point falls under this man’s control. So far so good. But then, half way through, I decide to alter the genre, from thriller, to super-natural. But after about 100 pages, I went back to it being a thriller. In the end, I wrote two parallel books, one contemporary, one supernatural. The published version is the contemporary one. Who knows, one day I might try and place that second version.

Well, there we are, a few pointers into how I go about my writing. I hope you’ve found it interesting, and if you’d care to pop along to my websites, you’ll see my work with details of where to buy them.

Thanks for dropping by, and keep reading.

1 Comment

Filed under fiction writing

Adventures in writing – a personal journey by Stuart G Yates: getting started by writing a short story.

The view from the learned is that when one embarks on this perilous journey of being ‘a writer’, the first port of call should always be to get a short story published.

Now, I have to be honest here. I’m not a lover of short-stories. Not the writing of them, nor the reading. I prefer longer narratives, one in which you can get your teeth into. I know some of you will go ballistic over this, but we all have our different tastes. But, it was something I had to do, so I did.

I wrote a short-story, based on something which had happened to me personally and which was pretty damned terrifying.

I won’t repeat it all here, but suffice to say it has a lot to do with things that go bump in the night. I wove a story around it, and it ran to around 7,000 words, which was fine. I then had to search for a suitable magazine that dealt with ghoulies and ghosties.

I found one, and promptly submitted.

Guess what – it was accepted. Elation followed! My first published piece. Of course, I didn´t get paid, but who cared about that? Certainly not me. Nothing could stop me now.

Next thing was, to get a magazine to take enough notice of me to want to hear my voice on a regular basis. I managed to secure such a little job writing for a local magazine, producing a 2000 word piece every month. And for this, I did get paid.

So, that was the first foray. Before that, of course, I had written a lot, but hadn´t really had the courage to send anything off. That first attempt with Jonathan Cape, and the rejection that followed, was sort of expected, but rejections always hurt, no matter how expected. And the time you spend waiting, waiting, forever waiting. Whoa. A current submission with Harper/Voyager reminds me of that. Over six months now I’ve been chewing my nails, and I’m almost down to the knuckles. I suppose that could be a good thing – not the nail chewing, the waiting; at least I haven’t been dismissed out of hand. It is still frustrating however.

I became a teacher late, having left school and not done very much. Going back to school was a revelation. One of the subjects I did was English Literature. The tutor said I had ‘an original style’, so that perked me up a bit. When I went to University, I was again complemented for ‘a particular flair for WRITING’ (their emphasis, not mine). Later, as I studied for an MA, the Professor said my style was ‘original, lively and engaging’. Perhaps I wasn’t going to miss my vocation this time.

I still had to find a good enough story to attempt to get published. It had to be something I believed in. And ‘Cold Hell in Darley Dene’ was. It was personal. Many of my books have been like that. Many of my books stem from ideas I had when I was younger. ‘The Well of Constant Despair’ for example came to me way back in the Seventies, but when I sat down to finally write it, I changed the location and placed it on Alderney, a tiny island in the Channel.

When my publisher suggested I might want to do a follow-up, my creative juices really came into their own. A follow-up became a trilogy. A ‘trilogy of terror’ ( a graphic for this on the ‘About Me’ page here)that I am actually quite proud of.

As I sit here and write this, my latest book has been published. ‘Roadkill’ is an adult tale of terror, but not of the supernatural kind. It is all too real. It is available on all the Amazon sites, and in paperback as well as Kindle. I think it is my best yet, and to answer some critics, no IT IS NOT SELF-PUBLISHED. I have never self-published, and have always sought out publishers who will produce good, worthy books. I believe ‘Roadkill’ is such a book. The story simply flowed out of me, and as I always follow a rough plan, I knew where it was heading. But as I wrote, more and more things came to me and the narrative simply blossomed. Even the ending changed. The editing process was long, and meticulous. The result is a great read, which anyone who enjoys contemporary thrillers will enjoy.

More thoughts next time, and if in the meantime you want to learn a little more about me, hit the ‘ABOUT ME’ tab where you´ll find links to my web-sites.

Thanks for dropping by, and carry on reading.

Leave a comment

Filed under fiction writing

Adventures in writing – a personal journey by Stuart G Yates: submitting my work, part 2.

Thinking back to those years, long, long ago when I would bash away on my old Olivetti (actually, to be absolutely accurate, my brother’s Olivetti!) it brings a smile to my face as I compare the process I go through now. In those days, the idea of ‘editors’, proof-readers, etc just simply didn’t exist. Or, if they did, I had no knowledge of them. My only ‘proof-reader’ was a friend of mine. Sitting hour after hour and dreaming up scenes, I would then pass them over to her, and she would make useful comments, always encouraging me, and eventually I would arrive at a piece of work that was half-descent. The rewrites were a nightmare. Remember, personal computers of any kind were another decade away, so it was simply a case of using the typewriter once again, to restructure, alter, delete and add.

It took forever.

So, as I began work on my next book, I enlisted the services of a typist.

However, this wasn’t until much later. When I began university, naturally part of my studies required me to submit theses. They had to be professionally produced. The amazing Amstrad word-processors had just come out but, being a poor student, I could not afford one. A typist was cheaper, and she did a great job. She had one of those electronic golf-ball thingies, and I would stand in her study, waiting to pick up my long-essay, and drool over that most beautiful of machines.

Talking to her one day, I drummed up the courage to ask her if she’d be willing to prepare parts of my novel. She seemed happy enough, so I delivered the first three chapters. Even in those days, submissions to publishers and agents required the first three chapters, packed away in a padded envelope and sent by recorded delivery.

So, armed with said words, I dropped them off and waited.

I’m still waiting.

I think that perhaps she found the language a little too coarse. Who knows? Perhaps it was too violent, gritty, real. I never saw those chapters and they could well be sitting on her desk right now.

Contrast with today. I finished a novel, Roadkill recently and after I’d gone through it a number of times, used ‘Autocrit’ to good effect, I submitted it and it was accepted. Then I began work on the editing process with the publishers. This was a long process, going through every line, checking, rewriting, sometimes arguing over some things. In the end, even going through the cover, I am left with a book that I am justly proud.


A contemporary thriller, Roadkill is about a somewhat warped individual who lives a dull, pointless life on Bodmin Moor in Cornwall. One evening, whilst driving home from work, Ralph hits a deer by accident. When he gets out of his car, he sees it is dead. He takes it home and cooks it, serves it to his wife, and she loves it. Naturally, he doesn’t tell her how he came by it, but something changes inside. So begins his gradual spiral into madness. He has always been a little ‘unhinged’ but this random event totally rips the last vestiges of sanity apart. He begins to take ‘road kill’ from the highway, brings that home too, and prepares it all for the pot. When his wife begins to suspect, she is sickened, refuses to partake anymore of this ‘free bounty’. When there is a road accident on the same highway, and a woman manages to drag herself free, Ralph kills her and takes her back to…Yes, you’ve guessed it.

What happens to Ralph as he plunges into insanity, you’ll have to find out by buying the book. It will very shortly be available on all devices, and in paperback. If you like thrillers, murders, modern-day horrors, then you’ll love this.

I wonder how it would have fared back then, created on my Olivetti. Who knows, it may have made it. Or, it may simply have remained on that woman’s desk, gathering dust along with my earlier effort. My hope is that many, many people pick it up and read it. Perhaps, even that typist!

Please visit my blog to find out more about what I do, with details of where to find my books:

Thanks for dropping by, and keep reading.


Filed under fiction writing

The Stories of Don Luis, chapter 2…by Stuart G Yates

Here is the second chapter of the newly revised ‘Stories of Don Luis, Part one, Ogre’s Lament’. I am hoping to submit this book when it is finally re-done, and all the tiny inconsistencies have been removed. It is, as they say, a ‘work in progress’. I hope you’ll enjoy it and please feel free to comment.


A soldier

Luis first spotted the man as he rode into the village square. A soldier, sword at his hip, pistols in their holsters, breastplate protecting chest. He wore no helmet, instead a large, floppy hat, which cast his face in deep shadow. A bright red feather took all of Luis’ attention, as the man’s features, masked by the wide brim, and a thick tangle of black beard, were difficult to work out. Except for the eyes, burning with an intensity Luis had seldom seen before. Dust covered the soldier like an extra coat, his poor steed stumbling forward to the drinking trough. They had obviously ridden for many miles, in the searing, unrelenting heat. The horse dipped its head and drank. Luis, with only two more bundles left to deliver, sat down on the fountain steps next to the animal whilst studying the man keenly.

The soldier dismounted, stretched and sighed loudly. He pulled a bandana from around his neck, dipped it into the water beside his still drinking horse, and washed himself, running the soaked bandana over his face before pressing the material into his mouth. He dabbed his lips, stopped and noticed Luis as if for the first time, his eyes narrowing. Luis stiffened, a tiny thrill of fear running through him. The man’s look seemed dark and terrible, as did the rest of him. A soldier, quick to judge, violence never far from the blade of his sword. Luis quickly averted his face and went to move away.

“Boy, wait there.”

Luis froze, the gruff voice sharp, used to giving orders and no doubt expecting compliance. The man stepped closer, his air of supreme confidence unsettling.

“Where is everyone?”

Luis blinked. “Er…it is only early, sir. Most people will still be in their beds.”

“Bah…peasants.” He looked around, as if he were trying to find something that would prove the lie of Luis’s words. Nothing else moved in the square. They were quite alone. The soldier exhaled and slumped down on the stone bench next to the fountain, coat and trousers creaking as he bent limbs. He motioned Luis to join him. For a moment he hesitated. “I don’t bite, boy.”

Luis forced a smile, and sat down. The tangy mix of stale sweat and aged, cracked leather invaded his nostrils, and something else. Something he knew, had smelled many times before; the acrid stench of decay.

“What’s your name, boy?”

“Luis, sir. Luis Sanchez.”

The man cocked an eyebrow as he scanned Luis, from head to foot. Luis felt his stare and grew uncomfortable, edging away from him slightly. “You wear your hair long, like a girl,” said the man, turning away to rifle inside a little pouch at his hip. “You must be a page, or a scholar perhaps.”

Luis studied the man filling a white bone pipe with tobacco taken from the pouch. Once before had he seen this. The mayor often smoked a pipe, the only man in the village to do so. Tobacco was rare and expensive, brought in from the Americas. Luis knew where that was. He had pored over maps at his school and would often spend hours daydreaming of adventures in far off lands, of voyages across vast, open seas, of mountains and valleys and—

“Are you listening to me?”

Luis snapped his head around, blinking rapidly. The man’s eyes burned with anger and the atmosphere became charged with danger. Luis held up his hand, alarmed. “I’m sorry, sir. I was thinking, and I meant no disrespect.” He tried a smile, but the man’s expression did not change.

“Thinking about what?”

Swallowing hard, Luis pointed towards the pipe. “Tobacco. Our mayor, he has a pipe. Rare things. Expensive.”

“Expensive…” The man’s voice drifted away and he sat back, closed his eyes and sucked on his pipe. His mouth made tiny popping sounds and smoke trailed white into the air.

The relief was palpable, the moment of danger past. Nevertheless, Luis remained upright, anxious not to allow his imaginings to return and so receive another sharp rebuke. So he sat and he waited, whilst the soldier quietly puffed away.

They remained like that for some time, neither speaking nor moving. Luis concentrated on his heartbeat, struggling to keep it steady. He had an urge to run, but he overcame it, grinding his teeth, keeping his eyes firmly fixed on the soldier as the man’s lips popped around the stem of the pipe.

The horse shook its head and abruptly, the soldier stood up. He knocked out the old tobacco against the fountain step, then stuffed the pipe back inside the pouch. “A tavern.”

“Excuse me?”

“Is a tavern close by, where I can find refreshment? Stable my horse?”

Looking up at him, Luis marvelled at the man’s size. The buff leather coat strained across wide shoulders, arms thick and strong, legs, like coiled springs of steel, stuffed inside long riding boots. Sheer strength oozed from every pore. Even Fernando, the village blacksmith, couldn’t compare with this man. A soldier. What stories he must have, what tales to tell. The things he’d seen, the places he had visited.

“Have you never seen a soldier before boy?”

Luis shook his head, and for a moment allowed his imagination to wander, pictures of distant castles, endless forests, rivers of silver, invading his mind, sending him far away.

A crack of laughter shattered his imaginings. He gasped and held his breath, waiting for the reprimand. But this time the man did not seem vexed, merely curious. Luis let out a slow sigh of relief. “No, sir, I’ve never seen a soldier. Never.”

“So none have ever passed this way?”


“Are you certain?”

Luis nodded. The man seemed satisfied, pulled in a breath and adjusted his belt. “So…tavern?”

“Filipe runs an inn, sir. Up the main road,” Luis stood and pointed towards the hill that ran from the square. “Just after the bridge. You can’t miss it. Or the mayor, he sometimes lets out rooms I believe.”

A moment of tension returned, the man’s shoulders tightening. “Filipe’s will suffice.” He took up the reins and lifted himself into the saddle. The horse stamped at the ground, annoyed to be moving so soon.

Luis patted the horse’s neck. It nuzzled into him and he stroked its soft nose. “You have come a long way.”

The soldier studied Luis intensely. “You’re not just a country bumpkin, boy. I can see that. You are a scholar, then?”

“Yes, sir. I like to think of myself as such.”

“Peasants are ignorant, stupid. Dangerous. But you…you are different. And that, my friend,” he struck the horse’s flanks and began to move away, “makes you even more dangerous. We shall meet again, Luis Sanchez. Farewell…and thank you.”

Luis stood still, contemplating the man’s words. Different…Yes, he was different; he knew that much, the other children of the village reminded him of it every day. But the soldier meant something more, a difference which ‘…makes you even more dangerous.’ Those words, curious, making no kind of sense to Luis at all. How could he, little Luis, be dangerous? If anyone was dangerous, it was he – the soldier. He had an air about him of barely contained fury, as if he struggled constantly to keep it at bay. Violence was his companion, his friend, his constant. And now he was here, in Riodelgado. But why? That was the biggest question of them all.


If this has sparked a tiny interest in what I do, please visit my website at where you can find out how to buy my books. Thanks for stopping by, and keep reading!

Leave a comment

Filed under fiction writing

Adventures in Writing – a personal journey by Stuart G Yates. My first submitted work part 1.

I always knew I had more than one book in me. Even in those very early days, when I had no real plan in my mind, nothing to direct me towards submitting, all I did was write. Every spare moment I had.

In the early Seventies, I left school with hardly any qualifications to speak of. English, because I was good with words, but I hated school and hadn’t done well. I wanted it all to become nothing more than a very distant memory.

My first job proved to be almost as dreadful as school. The one difference being that at least in school I had weekends off. Well, not anymore. I worked Saturdays, which I loathed. When it finally became too much, and my health began to suffer, I left and tried to rethink my goals. Naturally, I wrote. I developed a story, a science fantasy. When I managed to find another job, with Wirral Borough Council, a good friend of mine helped me by reading my work. This was really the first time anyone had taken any notice, and their encouragement was such a boost for me.

Needless to say, after around 60,000 words, I put it away and forgot all about it. By now I was in that wonderful place where most us go to, a life full of optimism, listening to Leonard Cohen, seeing wonder in everything, and travelling around Europe and the Middle East.

My experiences in Israel led me to writing my first submitted book. I slaved over it, night and day, trying my level best to create something which people might actually want to read. Entitled, ‘So Where’s the Milk and Honey?’ I posted it off to Jonathan Cape (you did that sort of thing in those days) and waited, and waited, and waited.

Inevitably, the rejection slip arrived, but one of the most considerate and inspiring rejections I’ve received. Yes, that’s right – inspiring. I still have it somewhere, telling me not to give up, to continue to write, to submit again.

Of course, the problem was, what to write next?

We all have influences, writers we admire, attempt to emulate. I had a whole range of such authors, ranging from Ian Fleming through to Thomas Hardy. As many different styles as you could imagine. Nevertheless, my own style was emerging. I knew what I could write well about, and also what I couldn’t. The greatest lessons I learned were the pacing of stories, and the building up of tension. I achieved this by observing, listening to people’s conversations, watching how people reacted to situations and, perhaps most importantly, living a life. I don’t see how you can write about things if you haven’t experienced them. In Israel I’d witnessed a few things that made my toes curl, met some seriously scary people. Fortunately, I became friendly with them, and I learned a lot about myself back then. Returning to Merseyside, experiences continued. When you’re facing a six foot six karate expert telling you he is going to ‘fold you up like a piece of paper’ it does things to you. I studied karate, met some very interesting characters. They tend to appear in my books nowadays, perhaps more than once!

I was still bashing away with my Olivetti. Copious carbon copies, constant rewrites. The ‘Writers and Artists Yearbook’ now became my bible, and I read voraciously. Soon I was scribbling down scenes on any piece of paper I found lying around. But I was still unpublished, and the learning curve continued to be a sharp one.

It was around 1980 when, out of work again, I decided to bite the bullet and get one of my books seriously ready for submission. That meant writing and re-writing, studying every sentence, and then, with all those crossings out and scribbled notes in the margin, I employed a professional typist to prepare the manuscript.

And the outcome…well…let’s wait and see!


You can find out more about me, and my published work, by visiting my websites. Almost all of my books are available on Kindle now, and the prices are looking good.

For Young Adult paranormal mysteries, go to

And for more adult orientated work, please visit

I hope you find something there to take your fancy.

Thanks for dropping by, and keep reading!


Leave a comment

Filed under fiction writing