As of today, I’m 46,564 words into the first draft of my third book ‘A Foolish Escape’.
Part of my writing process is to go back over old journal entries and blog posts.
This morning I came across this one, dated 20th November 2015. I wrote it aboard my boat in Marina de Lagos on the Portuguese Algarve.
It was titled ‘I Think I’m Beginning To Think’.
Reading it again reminded me how far I’ve come.
So here I am again, stabbing at the keys on my laptop in the vain hope that somehow I can turn the words churning round in my tiny little brain into something folks might actually read without losing consciousness.
Writing’s supposed to get easier the more you do it, that’s what it says in all the writing books I’ve read (I’m pretty sure my purchases of such books have increased Amazons share price these past few years), but I’m seeing no signs of it yet and I’ve been writing a lot lately.
I have plenty of time to write as I sit here in this floating caravan park waiting for spring and escape back to the open sea and peaceful anchorages.
I have time to write and I have time to think, and the writing helps me think. It hurts my head to think though, I can see why so many of us try and avoid it.
I’m an expert at not thinking but I know I should do it more, not thinking has got me into a lot of trouble in the past and still does.
Anyway, before the last of you falls into an unconscious stupor, what I’m trying to say is that all this thinking has led me to make some changes to my thinking. Hmmm, thinking changes thinking, that sounds almost clever….. Nah, can’t be.
So here’s what’s changed. I am now absolutely, 100%, rock-solid certain what I want to do……. I want to write.
I’d pretty much reached that conclusion before, but I made a mistake, I was focusing on the wrong type of writing. I was looking at writing as ‘work’, I defaulted to using what I already knew was a broken template, starting from a position of need and looking for a way to make money by doing stuff my heart really wasn’t in, going back to working for ‘clients’ and putting up with all the crap that comes with them.
What was I thinking? (A Strange phrase that isn’t it? We say it even when it’s obvious that we weren’t thinking at all).
But thanks to all that thinking I can now see clearly that I was charging down a blind alley, destined to slam into a brick wall and do myself some serious harm…..Again.
So I stopped, backed out of there and drew a new map.
Some might say they could see it coming, some might say they knew I was headed in the wrong direction, I might say well done them.
Sometimes you can be too close to something to focus properly, sometimes you get it wrong.
But if I’ve learned anything over the course of this build a boat and go sailing project, it’s that you don’t give up, you learn from your mistakes and move on. So that’s what I’m doing.
I’m going to carry on writing but I’m going to write what I want to write.
I’m going to write books and I’m going to self-publish.
I know this is the right path. Why? The answer is simple. Because it allows me to be me.
That’s what this project was about all along. It was about finding a path that allowed me to live my life as I wanted to live it, all the time.
Chasing money isn’t me, I can’t do it.
All I can do is write what I want to write, put it out into the world and see if a few folks will pay to read it.
Maybe they will, maybe they won’t.
It doesn’t matter.
What matters is that I’m true to myself.
So I hereby make a pledge to the Universe.
I will publish ’A Foolish Voyage’ before the end of this year.
This feels like the start of something.
I fulfilled that pledge.
‘A Foolish Voyage’ went live on Amazon Christmas Eve 2015.
I looked at the figures just now.
Sales are running at 3,500 Kindle versions and nearly 1,000 paperback versions.
And people are still buying copies every day.
Who’d have thought it?