Even though I’m a professional writer, I find writing about myself one of the hardest things to do. I read so many author blurbs which look as though they are just carbon copies of each other: “My passion for [genre] began X years ago, after reading [author]. I live in [city] with my [pet, name] and in my free time I enjoy [insert hobby here].” (All writers love yoga and cats, right?) If someone’s 100-word blurb is dull and boring, that makes me think the rest of their work is going to be dull and boring too.
Writing is all about voice and emotion: whether it’s your own voice, the voice of a character in a piece of fiction, or the voice of a client you’re working for. The best writers then use that voice to convey an emotion to the reader. It should always sound genuine and never contrived.
Writing is hard. That is, it’s hard to choose the correct words to convey the message you want, with the right sort of emotion. So many people think that all they have to do is pick up a pen or laptop and spew out words onto a page. But writing is so much more – it’s a craft in itself, which takes lots of time and practice. Making a living as a writer is difficult, yet there’s nothing I would rather do more.
It made sense for me to choose writing as a career, because I have tried so many different career paths, and none of them suited me at all. In most of my previous jobs my personality worked against me – I’m an introvert: I prefer working on my own than in a team. I’m not a people-person, and dealing with the general public totally drains me, even though I’m friendly enough. I get bored easily doing menial tasks, I don’t deal well with authority and I like to bend the rules. In most jobs these would be setbacks, but in writing they are truly an advantage. Although I’m not a great talker, I definitely have a way with words when it comes to writing them down. I am happy working alone for long spells and doing my own thing, and I can fit my work around family commitments.
When I first discovered writing, it was as though everything just fell into place for me. Up until that point I felt as though something was missing in my life. I’ve always been a shy and private person, I keep a lot of my feelings and emotions inside. But creative writing gives me an outlet for a lot of this energy, and I find the writing process itself to be healing as I can explore emotions, traumas and ideas through poetry, or by developing new characters.
The dream is that one day I’ll publish a novel. I’m already on the second draft of a manuscript, and have loads of other ideas that I can’t wait to write down. At the moment, finding extended periods of writing time is difficult with a toddler running around, so I’ve recently been concentrating more on poetry, which is easier to produce in short bursts.
This website is intended for me to share news and updates, ramblings and thoughts. My previous website ended up looking a bit soul-less as I tried to do too many things. This time I’m keeping things simple – it’s all about me and my writing. I hope you enjoy reading it.
(and in case you’re wondering – yes, I do love yoga and cats!)
– Ailie 😉