STORYTELLING AND AGE

IS IT EVER TOO LATE TO START WRITING?

Is there ever a time when we are too old to write? I don’t think so. In fact, storytelling and writing well into your later years will keep you mentally active and in tune with the world around you.

Why did I choose this subject you may well ask? I’m not too sure but the fact that my 74th birthday is looming before me may have triggered something off in my brain. Since my retirement 5 years ago, my life is so busy with researching, writing, publishing and marketing my books I often wonder where did I ever find the time to go to work; I was a full-time nurse manager until my 69th birthday.

WHAT AGE IS BEST TO START WRITING & STORYTELLING?

So, back to the subject of being too old to write? I noticed on a few writing forums people in their 20s, 30s, and 40s were asking if it was too late for them to start writing and storytelling? My answer is a resounding no! It is never too late to embrace the joys of writing and seeing your books published, which is now so much easier with indie-publishing.

What I would advise when possible, is for you to start as soon as you can whatever your age. I left writing my first words until I retired and had the time to concentrate on a new skill-set. It’s quite hard learning everything from scratch, but it has its own rewards along the way.

REWARDS

I’ve met new people through my writing. People I would never have met in my normal everyday life. I get lovely emails from people in a wide variety of countries. And when somebody says they enjoyed one of my books, the sensation is fantastic and a superb mood lifter.

THE CONS

The cons of waiting until you or somebody else thinks you’re too old to write:

  • When writing you may need larger text, glasses, or a screen guard to reduce eye strain.
  • Your fingers may be stiff and sore. Wear fingerless gloves to keep them warm. You can dictate your book, most devices have this ability
  • Your memory isn’t quite as sharp. Use a large desk diary to remind yourself of any tasks you need to complete. Make sure you plan your book with a comprehensive outline, so you’re able to pick up any forgotten threads. Keep hydrated to prevent a ‘foggy’ brain.
  • You’re not computer savvy. There are loads of super ‘how to’ videos on YouTube to walk you through necessary tasks. The one I found especially useful was wpbeginner.com it guides you through every programme you will ever need to set up a website for your books.
  • Your stamina isn’t as good as it was. Writing a book is not a marathon unless you’re on a deadline from a publisher. So, take your time and only do what you can each day. Even if it’s just 250 words, a day make it a habit, and you’ll soon find you’ve completed the first draft.

THE PROSSTORYTELLING IS IT EVER TOO LATE

For this section, I would like a drum-roll. My first book was published on my 70th birthday, and my life changed forever.

  • Since I started writing, I’ve learned so many new skills. Skills I thought I was far too old to learn a new. I’m not a computer expert, but I’m now able to negotiate most tasks, from writing to ensuring Google crawls my website to increase my site traffic.
  • My mind buzzes with new ideas
  • I can’t wait to start writing each day, whether it’s a book or one of my blogs.
  • I’ve learned so much about social media and love keeping in touch with liked minded people.
  • Research for my books has taken me into subjects I ’d never dreamed of tackling; from living in the eighteenth century to interviewing a crime suspect and what happens to a dead body!

NEVER TOO OLD TO WRITE

I can only repeat what’ve said before, you’re never too old or too young to write. Age, as the saying goes, is just a number. If you want to write – do it! Don’t hesitate. It’s fun learning how what and who and it’s absolutely incredible when you see your finished article published.

I’m on book three of my REVENGE SERIES and have taken a break from my own storytelling to write this article to encourage anyone who wants to write, to write. If you need any tips on how to write that first word? Then, go to my other site HERE learn how to write your first book, and get a FREE book on how to publish your book. Good luck!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AUTHORSHIP

What is meant by authorship? I keep seeing the word bandied around and needed to find out exactly in what context it is used. I found this explanation, and I’m going to share it with you.

Au·thor·ship

(ô′thər-shĭp′)

n.

1. The act, fact, or occupation of writing.
2. Source or origin, as of a book or idea.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the En
Now I’ve established the meaning of Authorship I can go ahead and share this blog with you.
I finished and published my last book DEATH BY REVENGE,  number two in my revenge series, last October.
Today I can announce book three has now been outlined in Scrivener. If you’re not aware what Scrivener is, I can tell you it is a very clever writing software. I’ve had it for a number of years now, but have not managed to use it to its full potential. After reading quite a few articles on how wonderful it is for authors, students and copywriters I’ve made up my mind to master the software. Thank goodness for Youtube and Udemy as they’ve both got tons of tutorials to help beginners like me.Authorship, book outline
So, back to my third book, as previously mentioned I managed to create an outline of my idea, ready to turn it into a book.  Here’s my first attempt at Scrivener outlining.

AUTHORSHIP -FIRST OUTLINE

Although this is the first outline it won’t necessarily end up in the book. Often, I get an idea and then from that first idea another idea intervenes and the story goes off in another direction, which I find fascinating. So, this time, because I’m using this new writing software I can take a ‘snapshot’ of anything I’ve written before changing or editing. Meaning I’ll be able to compare the first ideas to what I end up with.

In my REVENGE series, I have so far only had serial killers wreaking havoc on the small market town of Frodsham. But, this time I think, there’ll only be one murder, but the plot will also include blackmail and a cold case of kidnap and a missing child. All investigated by the usual team led by DI Helen Cooke. There’s a new Detective Constable to replace the DC murdered in book two, and I’m planning a lot of trouble with her for Helen! The rest of the team will stay the same – so far – but anything can happen between the pages. I might juggle their personal lives around a bit too – have a bit of lurrv and a lot of angst. (I’m rubbing my hands with glee at this point – oh the power!)

Authorship chaptersHere are the first two chapters still in draft form – about 3.500 which isn’t a lot – yet, but once I’ve completed 5.000 words I usually know the story-line and I’m able to continue and complete the book.

My authorship on book three has some way to go yet with quite a few twists, turns and changes. I still need a title and think about a cover and I also need to decide how long the story will be. I’ve got a lot to do, so, I need to crack on.

Why not join me in my journey of authorship and join my list for further news, snippets and a chance to read some random unedited chapters as I write the book. CLICK HERE

If you fancy writing your own book go to my sister site for more tips

 

WRITING MY FIRST BOOK

Part Three of WHY HAD I HAD TO WRITE MY FIRST BOOK. GRACE ROSCOE. Click either PART ONE  or PART TWO to read the previous posts.

In the previous posts, I mentioned how I found Grace on an Ancestry site when I started researching my family tree. I found her fascinating, especially after hearing whispers throughout my childhood of a ‘mysterious’ relative who’d caused a great scandal many years ago. Although at the time I’d never realised it was so long ago, in the eighteenth century.

THE RUMOURS

Not only were there whisperings about a scandal, but a vast family fortune had been lost to all Grace’s decedents, because of a fraudulent act by one of her relatives. More rumours have been circulated over the years, and I’ve even found paper cuttings of some of the Hazlehurst (Grace married John Hazlehurst) families taking the case to court. But, alas nothing has ever come of it. The fortune today wouldn’t be worth much spread across the world to all of Grace and John’s decedents.

The claim was taken out by a Samuel Hazelhurst in 1831 and was thought to be for around £1.2 million pounds against the descendants of Jane Hardman, the wife of one of the Hardman brothers,, who was believed to have falsified documents. She managed to transfer the Hardman’s  wealth to her own family instead of Grace’s family after 99 years. Samuel Hazelhurst also claimed murder had been committed in order to prevent the documented evidence ever reaching the courts.

WRITING THE STORY

So, what has all this got to do with me being compelled to write Grace’s story? Not much, only it is a tantalising story. But there isn’t too much evidence, except the rumour that any of this happened.

I wasn’t a writer, and writing was not my forte. But, I continued researching my family tree and continued my nursing career. I had no time for writing.

It was only when Grace started to visit me when I was experiencing drug-induced hallucinations from my chemotherapy I was receiving. Sounds weird, I know. But, she appeared to give more and more snippets of her life. I spent hours working out, how she must have lived her life. Once strong enough I began to write – very badly at first. I didn’t know where or how to start.

I did it though, all by myself. With loads of errors but a deep, deep satisfaction. Grace and John’s  love story is now out there, for everyone to read.

From writing about Grace, I realise who and what I am.

I am Grace Roscoe’s fifth great-grandchild with the same stubbornness and strong will I think Grace had. In fact, all the women on Grace’s side have all been strong women.

I’m Grateful to Grace and John in many ways and admire the strength of their love. They both faced danger, scandal and poverty for their love for each other and without that love, I would never have been born. Their story is a heartwarming one of enduring love and devotion.

Read the first three chapter of GRACE ROSCOE here

 

 

THE ROMANCE OF GRACE & JOHN

Part Two of the story

Go to PART ONE – WHY I HAD TO WRITE MY FIRST BOOK – HERE to learn how I found Grace Roscoe, my fifth Great Grandmother.

READ THE FIRST TWO CHAPTERS OF GRACE ROSCOE HERE

I wrote this story in 2014, set in the 18th Century. England a year after I retired from nursing.  I was able to research much of Grace’s family on Ancestry.co.uk It is a true story of Grace Roscoe who was only twelve when she was taken by her cold, unloving mother to live at Allerton Hall in Liverpool. The book starts with Grace’s journey from Bolton le Moores, Lancashire, England, accompanied by her mother Margaret Roscoe. They travelled by coach towards her destiny starting in Liverpool. A destiny she didn’t know anything about, as she wasn’t told where she was going, or why.

Romance at the hall

AN HEIRESS

There At Allerton Hall (picture on the left circa 1820) she was to be made an heiress to her mother’s cousins, John and James Hardman’s vast fortune. The two brothers, amassed enormous wealth from racketeering but had no standing within society. Wealth derived from slave trading around the West Indies caused the very society they craved to join to shun them.

Neither brother had any living children to inherit their wealth, and they hatched a plan with their cousin Margaret for Grace to inherit their wealth and keep Margaret in a style she wanted

ARRANGED MARRIAGE

The plan was to marry Grace off, when she came of age, to a Titled or well-connected gentleman who would ensure the brothers’ admission into the society they both craved.

Grace attended a family meeting at Allerton Hall, where her uncle John Hardman informed her of a plan for her arranged marriage. Still a young and frivolous girl, with romance and marriage years away and not on her agenda, she accepted her fate for the time being.

FORBIDDEN ROMANCE

Time passed and Grace’s guardians set about turning her into a lady ready for an arranged marriage. In the meantime, all unsuitable suitors and any potential romance discouraged. Everyone she met had to be approved by her family. But her uncles and aunts didn’t see or notice a romance developing right under their noses. Grace had met and fallen in love with a man she would be willing to die for. And her family had unwittingly introduced her to him – the coachman – John Hazelhurst born 1714 in Frodsham, England.

Romance at allerton. liverpool

Allerton Hall on the left in modern times is now a pub and restaurant. But, can you see how Grace compelled me to write about her romance with John? Especially as I’d moved to live in Frodsham many years earlier, unaware of my connections to the town.

I still believe when Grace visited me when I was so ill, she wanted her story told.

Next time I will tell you how Grace and Johns’ romance progressed under subterfuge and danger.

 

READ THE FIRST TWO CHAPTERS OF GRACE ROSCOE HERE

 

my story MY FIRST BOOK -THE STORY

PART ONE

As a young girl brought up on the outskirts of Liverpool, I often heard the family adults whispering amongst themselves. Curiosity almost overwhelmed me. What were they talking about they wouldn’t share with me?

Years flew by, but the whisperings didn’t stop. When my mother eventually told me what was being discussed over the years, I can only use one word to describe how I felt -disappointed. What? That’s not scandalous?

A SCANDALOUS STORY

It appears a family member had been made an heiress to the soon to become Mayor of Liverpool, on condition she married well! Things didn’t turn out well for all concerned, as the young woman (I still didn’t know her name) ran off with the estate’s coachman.

As a young woman myself in the 60s ready to take up a career in nursing, I found the story rather far-fetched and insipid. Not for me as a teenager in the swinging sixties.

FAST FORWARD

Around 2008, I found my scandalous family member on an Ancestry site her name – GRACE ROSCOE born 1719. Many hours, days, months and years passed with my new favourite hobby and it started to bring Grace to life for me. I became fascinated with her and her STORY. I had even moved to live in Frodsham in Cheshire – a place I’d never heard of previously to my visit there when I married.

Why is Frodsham important? John Hazlehurst is the coachman Grace eloped with and he is from the Market town of Frodsham!

A coincidence, I wondered? Or a spooky story perhaps?

GRACE’S VISIT

By 2010, I had unearthed nearly everything I could about John Hazlehurst and Grace Roscoe, my 5th Great Grand Parents, but still, I had never thought about writing their story. A simple reason perhaps was I had never written anything except reports for work. Which may be important but hardly entertaining.

Disaster struck in my personal life and I developed breast cancer – fairly advanced. I went through a gruelling year of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Grace visited me during my chemical hallucinations. No, I don’t believe in things like that either, but she kept coming back. She became ingrained in my mind, I was convinced she wanted me to write her story. I was obsessed with making sure her story wasn’t lost.

RECOVERING

During my recovery, I started to learn the basic principles of writing a first book, (more writing tips) and how to blog. I continued to gather more information about John and Grace (thank goodness for the internet) and their love story. What I found was a feisty young woman who was willing to die for the man she loved. Who wouldn’t want to write about that?

Now I’m fit and well, and enjoy writing, and thank Grace for the opportunity to start something I would never have thought of a few years earlier. PART TWO of  How I wrote my very first book will continue next week.

READ THE FIRST TWO CHAPTERS OF GRACE ROSCOE HERE

Promoting Books Using the Press.

Last week I was lamenting my poor efforts at book-marketing. Something many writers, and especially new writers find as a rather daunting task. Just writing a book isn’t enough for an author now, they have to actively go out and begin promoting (selling their books) unless they’re just writing for passion, and selling isn’t of interest to them.  But most of us need to sell, to at least break-even on what we’ve spent (although it is possible to write and publish on a shoe-string) to get our books ready for publishing. Not everyone has money to throw at advertising and promotion, especially those of us still on the lower step of the ladder of authorship.

DOOM AND GLOOM

But wait! Does this all sound glum and a bit whingy?

Absolutely not. promoting books

Although everything in the above statements applies to me and probably loads of other writers, with regards to book promoting, I am actually buzzing with excitement. Today an article was published in my local newspaper (from little acorns grows big oak trees – so here’s hoping) and I feel as though I have won the lottery I am so elated. This is what writing and publishing are all about. The long hours of doubt and pounding away on a keyboard, all come together when something like this happens. What exhilaration authors who win accolades and become best-sellers must feel is unimaginable. But back to my wonderful press- release:

I am a local author living in the small village of Helsby in Cheshire, my books are set in the neighbouring small market town of Frodsham. Where possible I  include various landmarks around the area but have to admit I’ve been rather untruthful about the police station. In my two books UNHOLY REVENGE and DEATH BY REVENGE I’ve cast the small, unmanned (now moved to within the Fire station!) police station as large enough to carry a full quota of police personnel, from DCI’s down to the local PCSO.

All good fun.

I’ve not messed around with the main local pub – yet, but have started to include a few landmarks that depict Helsby, so keep an eye out for my next book – still a WIP. You can get the full article HERE

GETTING BACK TO BOOK PROMOTING

So, what is the best book- promotion? I don’t know. I’m still learning, although I have days of despair (gloom and doom) the good, exhilarating days still far outweigh anything that would make me give up writing – well not until I’ve finished book three of the REVENGE series.

Next time I will write about how I wrote my first book GRACE ROSCOE in the meantime would you like a FREE copy of my short story – Murder of a Good Woman? Click the link on the left sidebar.

If you fancy trying your hand at writing your own book, get free advice HERE

 

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HOW TO ( NOT) MARKET A BOOK

book-marking booksBOOK-Marketing is probably one of the hardest tasks an Indie writer has to contemplate. Most of us, when we first begin our creative journey of writing, don’t know much about book marketing. I personally found it all rather daunting, and am always very reluctant to sell myself (along with my books). I’ve only just got used to the idea that I can call my self a published author – although “only” a self-published Indie writer. Which now days doesn’t hold the stigma of being second class, compared to the traditionally published author. Even that doesn’t take the task of book-marketing away from authors.

A BOOK-MARKETING NEWBIE

As you can imagine, with thousands and thousands of self-published books, it can be hard to get your own books to sell. At first, all your friends, colleagues and family will rush to download your wonderful creation from Amazon, and they too (if publishing with them) will do their little bit of displaying your book as a newly published for a few weeks. So, everything is stomach churning and exciting until….. the first frenzy of sales start to dry up. Your stomach stops the excited butterflies and replaces them with a hard flat brick of despair!

Glum, or what? This is a reality for many newbie writers. And I’m sure it is a test of endurance – now is the time to fight back and do all things that should have been done prior to the launch of the book. But, it’s never too late.

To give my own book DEATH BY REVENGE  a book-marketing boost, I decided to be brave and attempt to sell the idea of an article to the local Newspaper. Think small, I whispered to myself, its no use going to the Nationals until you can get your name out there. Wrong – there is always a chance a large national paper can pick up your article from a local newspaper.

I took a deep breath and plunged in. Shudder! I got in touch with a wonderfully responsive reporter. Let out the deeply held breath. Yes, they could do an article about a local author. OMG! Forget the stomach-churning, it was now replaced by a hammering heart, as a photographer was sent around to take some photographs.

NEWSPAPER ARTICLES

What should I do? Dress up? Light or heavy make-up? Hair down and curly or up and sophisticated. Will I look fat, will my wrinkles take over my face? Stop! Slow down. People have actually bought my book and enjoyed it, so why shouldn’t I try to increase my sales?

So, long story short, the photographs were taken, everything went well and the publication was scheduled for the Thursday. Ah, I thought, I’ll try my hand at this book-marketing lark again, and let everyone know on my Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Linkedin accounts.

“Woohoo, the article will be in the paper on Thursday.” I proclaimed to anybody who listens. Congratulations flooded in.

I bought the paper on Thursday and feverishly scrambled through each page, devouring each article to make sure I didn’t miss anything. Nothing!! My article wasn’t there. The heavy flat brick returned to my stomach.

book-marketing sad

My book-marketing attempt had failed with flying colours. How could I be so stupid? Life as I now knew it would surely be changed forever?

Aw, wait, a reprieve. My article is scheduled for next Thursday. The pounding of my heart is joined with the stomach butterflies as I wait for next Thursday to arrive. (How much chocolate can one nervous author eat?) Do I announce the day to everyone? Or should I keep quiet? oh, the trials and tribulations of an inexperienced book-marketing author.

 

If you fancy trying your hand at writing your own book, get free advice HERE

Join me next week when I hope to share this long-awaited newspaper article with you. Also a few snippets of how my book-marketing skills have progressed.

 

A NEW BLOG’S BEGINNING

 

LEARNING ABOUT PARAGRAPHS

 

Now three of my fiction books have been published, I thought it might be nice if I started a new blog for my readers and take them behind the scenes of writing my next books. Check out my HOME page http://rcwelsbyauthor.com for my previous books/

NEW BLOG

In the blog, I would like to log my journey of writing the third book in my Revenge crime & mystery series. Although at this stage it is still just an idea inside my head. My motives are rather selfish to crave your company on my journey. As a writer, life is often quite lonely when wrapped up in a world of make-believe. Not to say it’s incredible fun at times.

WRITE YOUR OWN BOOK?

Have you ever wanted to write a book? It appears around 80% of the population say they would like to (don’t ask me where the statics come from) but they don’t don’t know where to begin. If you would like to join me on my writing journey and try your hand at writing yourself, go to my other website under my pen name – there you will find all the details you will need to start writing your own books –  https://katelhamlyn.co.uk I digress, but I do think it’s important for anyone to write a book if it is their dream.

Today, I’m just giving you the heads-ups so you’ll know what the blog is all about and if it is of interest to you either as a reader or an aspiring writing. If you wish to know anything about my books, how to write or anything else do get in touch by sending a quick email to:

Book_writer@aol.com with the heading BLOG.

TODAY

Most of my time today has been spent tidying up my author website, removing things I didn’t like and making others a little simpler. This has taken me a number of hours, as I’m really Cr&%p at technical things and basically muddle through. So, if you’re planning to write, make sure you can make your way around a computer or know a man ‘Who can!’

It was only when I was fixing the pages that I realised I didn’t have a blog on this site (most of my blogging goes on at Katiewrites). I’ll try not put in too much of the boring stuff, but will try and give a good balance of what its like to write a book from start to finish. As I mentioned earlier, I do have a slight idea of a story and I’ll share that with you, and see if it goes anywhere. But for now, I’ll sign off and will be in touch soon. In the meantime would you like a FREE copy of my short story MURDER OF A GOOD WOMAN? CLICK HERE if you would.