Writing and I

How many times have I heard ‘You’re not a real writer.’ from people, because I’m not traditionally published. Why am I not a real writer? I spend hours on end creating stories, which I then format and publish off my own steam. Surely that makes me a writer right? Does it matter how I do it? I just do it. Is this justified? I’m not sure. I’ve read some appauling traditionally published books and equally read some fantastic self published work.

Looking back over my writing career, I still find it astounding that this is what I do and still do. The first time I started to write, I had no idea what I was doing. I just remember writing words down and allowing the story I had to tell just to come out of me. That first story was Morgan and honestly, those first drafts were appaullingly bad. It just never worked or made sense, but it was a start. The seed had been planted and I was stepping on the road to my new way of life.

By the time I was writing The Higher Trilogy, I was taking it much more seriously. Learning about the trade and my writing was showing it. I’d considered writing courses and groups, but my experience doing a creative writing module at Uni put me off. Although there were some great ideas and tips that I gained from other students, the Tutor was not a fan of my writing style, complaining at the darkness that my stories always seemed to take. But my leanings reading wise has always been on the dark side, so the tone of writing reflects that.  I even remember being told once that I shouldn’t write using my own style. It’s too risky to do that I was told. You should write properly. Again, this advice flummexed me. Why would I wait to be successful before using my own voice? Readers fall for the style just as much as plot and characters. Again it seemed people had tips on how to write and some of it was from those that had never write anything in thier life. One even said to me that I had good ideas, but I would be better with a ghostwriter. How to batter a writers confidence. Thankfully this was during my early writing career and I’ve learned what to take on and what not to. I may not sell millions but people are buying and reading and that speaks volumes.

When it comes to my writing process, I’m a bit haphazard. There’s a basic planning to the story, notes taken, but I don’t do anything special or use my office. In fact, the office gets neglected and should be used more. But I’m happy on the laptop in the middle of somewhere noisy and from there I can fall into my writing world quite quickly. But one of the things I’ve learned is that the craft I’m in is a personal one as is my journey. You can learn the technicalities, which is helpful, but I do beleive that if you can then you will. I could go on course after course, but would it make me a better writer? Maybe, maybe not, but all I know is that the love of what I do drives me and that is all that matters.

So am I real writer? Yes I bloody well am. It’s in my blood and I will continue doing it till they prise the pen from my cold dead fingers 😉


About deborahcfoulkes

I was born and bred in the Yorkshire market town of Selby, which is lucky enough to have an historic abbey church at its centre, also being a 30 minute car drive to famous York, I use every bit of that history to create new worlds. My degree is in History and English Lit, but my leaning is towards history. I have a fascination with the Tudors and I’ve been told by a University tutor, I have an unhealthy liking for Henry VIII. That said my area of expertise study wise is Matthew Hopkins and the so called witches of the 1600’s. Books have been a part of my life as far back as I can remember and I count Stephen King, James Herbert and the Brothers Grimms as my literary heroes. I have a fondness for the macabre and a weakness for the antagonist of any story. By day, I work in a public library and by night or days off, I am hitting the keys of my lovely blue laptop

Posted on March 22, 2016, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. I agree – you bloody well are a writer! Popped over from The Review to check out your post and I’m glad I did. Felt a kindred spirit out there when it comes to having to validating what one does because one is a self-published author. With four novels out in the world, the question still rears its head now and then. Nice post. I’m happy to follow along.


    • Thank you it’s so nice to hear that I’m not alone in feeling this. Sometimes it puts me off talking about writing to people, just so I can avoid the questions of ‘Have you written anything I know?’ to ‘How much do you make doing that?’ 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Loved this, and I can related to nearly all you’ve said!


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