A writer’s life isn’t all writing

First of all thank you to everyone who made nice comments on the blog or sent me messages after my ‘down’ post the other day. I really appreciate your thoughts. I still haven’t written anything creative (although in some ways the blog is a gentle limbering up), but the idea of doing so doesn’t seem quite such an impossibility.

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A glimmer of light in the sky!

But Wednesday was the sort of day which forced me out of the doldrums. In the morning I went to a meeting of the steering group for Evesham Festival of Words 2016. It’s a dynamic group (well, I am some of the time) made especially so by the energetic chair, Sue Ablett. It’s all going to take place over the weekend of 1-3 July 2016, and it’s full of splendiferous wordy events. Don’t take my word for it. Read about it on the website , and/or like the festival on Facebook to get regular updates.

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Some of the steering group ‘hard at work’!

I had to rush away from the meeting as I was giving a talk to the Worcester U3A group. I was somewhat unnerved by two misunderstandings which had only been corrected the day before. I’d got into my head the talk was at 7 – it was actually at 2! Narrowly missed disaster there. The second was that I’d presumed it would be a small meeting of those people interested in creative writing. Wrong! It was a general meeting with 60-70 people, the first one of 2016, and only a small minority were creative writers. Gulp! I’m not usually too nervous speaking in public, but how was I going to get, let alone keep, all those people interested in me warbling on about my books?

The chairman had some introductory comments, including ‘If anybody needs to leave early …’, and then he introduced me as an authoress. I stood up in the middle of what felt like a vast area, the mic attached to my waistband, and faced the rows and rows of faces. I began with ‘I’ve got to clear up two things straight away – first I’m not an authoress. I’m an author! And second, unless it’s a matter of life and death, on no account is anyone to leave early!’ They laughed, and we were away!

In the end, the hour flew past. They seemed interested; they laughed in the right places, and they asked lots of questions. Loads of people came up at the end to say how much they’d enjoyed it, and I even sold a few books. The organiser was very complimentary. He said ‘You gave a lot of yourself.’

And I suppose that’s what being a writer is – you give a lot of yourself. And that’s why it’s draining, exhausting physically, mentally and emotionally, but also exciting and exhilarating. As I walked back to my car, I felt the tension flowing away. But I knew I’d done a good job, and that was immensely satisfying.

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4 Comments

  1. Gulara says:

    Just lovely! Enjoyed today’s post. I think connecting with other writers and audience is an integral part of writing life.

  2. Lindsay says:

    Thanks, Gulara. Glad you enjoyed the post. I agree about the connecting, but it is a bit strange when you emerge from the computer, blinking into the light and find all these lovely people!

  3. So pleased you had a good time at Worcester U3A, I’m part of the group, but couldn’t be there unfortunately – they’re a good bunch 🙂

  4. Lindsay says:

    I didn’t realise you went to U3A, Polly. Would have been fun to see you there!

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