Another chapter from "Writing While Old"
I am that older woman who wants to write. The desire has been dancing around for about 20 years and I dabbled. The past year, I made the time to seriously pursue the dream, but there are doubts. Have I really got something valuable to offer? Who would read what I have to say? So, yes, I would buy the book which could encourage me during the doubting times.
I like the tone. Like you’re sitting and chatting with me, sharing experiences and things you’ve learned. As opposed to, say, “These three things will make you successful!” and then you discuss the three things. Or “Here are the BEST WAYS TO BE A SUCCESSFUL WRITER!” and then spend the next ten paragraphs not talking about any of them (but that’s mostly clickbait articles… hopefully…). Your approach lets me know where you’re coming from, so it lets me decide, “Does this make sense for me?” And maybe it won’t, but I get to decide.
Write it for the old people. They will pass it on to their kids if there are true words and good lessons in it. I'm still passing on Anne Morrow Lindberg's, "Gifts From The Sea".
Hi Ramona - I love the concept of a book about writing for older people. What a great niche. Even though much of the advice will be universal for all writers, there will be people for whom your book will be perfect. There are bound to be people out there who think they are too old to start writing, or they'll never be published at their age etc etc. And you are the perfect person to encourage them. Go for it.
“You write because you want to—maybe because you desperately want to—but not because you must.”
Just because you won’t die doesn’t mean you don’t have to. I think some of us are truly compelled. We honestly don’t have a choice. I don’t like I’ve skipped a day of writing in maybe 38 years. And I’m sure I’ve got lots of company. Yes? No?
And almost everything I experience I experience through the filter of how I’d write about it. That’s a thing, yes?
I love the idea of a "Writing while old" book. I know you won't think I'm old, but I see so many much younger people than me being better at writing and think I shouldn't bother sometimes. "Old" is like "young" - a matter of perspective. In my case, I have reasons that I feel old. I'm sure your book would appeal to many would-be writers whose perspective on life casts them as "old".
In answer to your question, no, at this stage in my writing life, I probably wouldn't buy another book on writing.
I'm an indie writer, first published in 2010 and for the few years before I became published, I actually spent money on having my then manuscript 'worked' by a literary consultancy in London. The ms. became the book one writes and then puts in the bottom drawer. (One should always have one.)
I then wrote the book I wanted my name attached to and went back to the same consultancy and they worked with me again - it cost a lot, but the end result was that I became one of their Hot 24. These were writers they would actively shop to agents and publishers.
But I decided to go indie for a number of reasons and getting into the Hot 24 gave me the confidence to do that.
To cut a long story short, I would go back and do exactly the same thing again. Not buy 'how to' books but actively work with a good editorial consultancy. The consultancy taught me so much and I still to this day, think it's the best money I've spent in my writing life.
I'm sorry if this is not what you wanted to hear, and it's only one writer's experience but it worked for me. I'm sure many others have other opinions and experiences.
I love your writing, Ramona- keep it coming, foggy brain or not!
Do you think that age-ing removes barriers and anything can become possible? Or is it the reverse? Maybe because we have less time left, we must make the most of it by doing what we've always wanted but haven't been able to. I heard of a writer friend's father (80) who jumped out of a plane the other day!!!!
Maybe writing a book is like jumping out of the plane. We just have to have the desire first and then the courage...
Ramona, I reckon anything with a sense of humour is worth reading as it takes fear of the unknown and unexpected away. I retract my original comment about not buying any more writing craft books. Go for it and let us enjoy it!