I’m Not Writing A Book….I’ve Written A Book

Almost a year ago I took a week off work for the purpose of starting to write a book. The idea for it had been rattling around my head since the summer, but fear and self-doubt held me back from taking the plunge and putting pen to paper. Or rather, digits to keyboard. In the end, Fionnuala literally chained me to a desk and opened the laptop in from of me. Write, just write. And so, it began.

I had an idea, but no plan. No chapter by chapter breakdown, no detailed synopsis. I just wrote blindly, stumbling from page to page, usually with no idea where the story was taking me. At one surreal point, the characters took over and began to craft their own histories. I started to trust them and the path ahead formed, one step at a time. The Kirkwood Scott Chronicles were born.

Last night, I closed the lid of the laptop, having completed the fourth edit of ‘Skelly’s Square’ the first book in what I hope will be a series, charting the adventures of our eponymous hero and his friends, battling an ancient, malignant evil on the streets of modern day Belfast. The book is currently being critiqued by my trusty band of beta readers, who have provided invaluable feedback so far. You know who you are.

I know you never really finish a book. I need to digest the beta feedback and further tinker with the manuscript. But I’m now at the stage, where the cake is baked and I’m just applying the icing. It could be the worst book ever written, but it is written and they can never take that away from me, whoever ‘they’ are. I’ve already grasped the creative thread which is Part 2, and will be feeling my way into it when the dust settles from this one.

I’m increasingly tempted to research the self publishing route. The drain of completing a year’s work and then facing the gargantuan task of securing an agent and publisher might be a step too far. I don’t expect to sell millions or win awards. All I ever wanted to do was write and one day, hold a printed copy in my hand. It could take years, if ever, to achieve that via traditional publishing routes.

We will see but the horror stories coming from traditional publishing terrify me. I’m not sure I want to expose either Kirkwood or myself to that. I will mull it over in the weeks ahead as the beta feedback comes in. In the meantime I’m open to any suggestions anyone has to offer. As ever, I want to thank everyone who has supported and encouraged me on the journey. Kirkwood Scott has finally been born.

Would you read ‘The Kirkwood Scott Chronicles – Skelly’s Square’?

Publishing or Self-Publishing? Thoughts?

55 thoughts on “I’m Not Writing A Book….I’ve Written A Book

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  1. Congratulations. What’s the harm in trying out the agent/publisher route first? there are competitions around for first-time authors’ novels too which are worth a shot. If it gets too disheartening, the self-publishing route is still open. My writing group has just self-published a collection of our work – it’s a VERY mixed bag, and the formatting for print was a learning curve… but we have it in our hot little hands in time for the relatives to regret the fact at Christmas. But then, we never did expect to sell it to anyone other than to ourselves and our U3A group. (Where the Wild Winds Blow, by the Whittlesea Wordsmiths, if you’re asking)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congratulations me and the kids are very proud of you and I can officially say that I was the first person to read your book and I loved it. I didn’t think I would because as you know reading is definitely not my thing but it got a hold of me and kept me interested and wanting more.

    Rebecca is so proud of her daddy today going to school. It is dress as your hero day so she dressed up as one of the hero’s from the book Meredith and can’t wait to tell everybody about her character and her daddy. She asked me does this mean we will be millionaires when it gets published 😂 You’ve still a long way to go but like everything we’ve been through in our life together it’s a struggle and a gruelling process but we always get there in the end.

    Congratulations once again and well done I might even buy you honeycomb ice-cream tonight to celebrate 🎉 😘

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Whatever route you decide to go with respect to publishing your book, it will be a resounding success, of that I’m certain. As I’ve previously stated I look forward to reading it, although I do have one teeny request that comes with my purchased product; I expect that it will be autographed by you so that one day I can brag and say I knew him when…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Your story is so inspiring to aspiring writers. All the interviews I read from writers are similar – they just sat down and wrote and wrote and wrote. Different approaches from each, but they made it a priority and did it.

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  5. I have no literal experience with the publishing thing, but have read several bloggers’ opinions on the matter.

    It seems many of them like self-publishing, but they’ve only been commercially successful AFTER going the publishing house route.

    -That, and you have to do a lot of self-promoting with self-publishing. Frankly, there’s self-promoting with publishing houses, too.

    I Just think the legitimacy would help you for this being your first book. 🙂

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  6. Yes! I would read it!! Yay. I’m happy for you! The first most important thing is that you are happy with what you have accomplished. I hope living in another country I’ll be able to buy it!

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  7. I anxiously await the opportunity to read ‘The Kirkwood Scott Chronicles – Skelly’s Square’. If your blog is any indication, it’s sure to be an interesting read. I cannot proffer any advice insofar as which route to take, but I think getting it “out there” should be a priority and self publishing seems like a good idea to me – but I have no experience with either. I will be praying for you and wishing you every success. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!

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  8. Congratulations! Whether or not this ever sees the light of day (via traditional or self-publishing avenues), you have the satisfaction of knowing that you persisted and completed a MAMMOTH task. You deserve several hearty pats on the back for that. Well done, sir!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. First of all I’d like to thank you for stopping by my blog. I don’t say this (completely) out of that feeling you get when someone notices you (although thanks for noticing!). The main reason I’d like to thank you is because your visit brought me to your blog. That was my real reward.

    I’m very eager to read Skelly’s Square! The premise sounds delicious, just the sort of stuff I like to get lost in.

    My writing process sounds somewhat similar to yours. I have my “big idea” solidly in mind, but after that I like to see where the story will take me. Two examples:

    1. When I began writing the Cerah of Quadar Series I had one sentence in my head “Cerah was the chosen one.” It was originally the opening sentence of the first volume, although in editing it got moved a little further down. But beyond that I wasn’t really sure what was going to happen, and as I wrote and introduced characters (and got to know them myself) I found certain events and directions that, in retrospect, were actually inevitable. 2. My thriller series (Cleanup Crew) started from dropping my wife off in front of Home Depot then parking the car. As I pulled into the spot I heard something clunk in our trunk and my mind immediately went to “Kim has killed someone and they’re in the trunk.” Ten seconds later I had my plot. It was the second book in the series that really took my places I didn’t expect, however. In fact it went places that I didn’t like at all (as a human being) but absolutely loved as a writer.

    As far as self-publishing, it’s the route I took when I began, and eventually got picked up by a small publishing house in Iowa, Northern Lake Publishing. I am actually friends with the publisher, (and have written with him), and I know that he is always looking for good new talent, a category I’m feeling you exemplify perfectly. I’d love to talk to you more about self-publishing, or, if you like I could give you contact information for Northern Lake. In either case I’ll wait to hear from you, as I’ve already written a much longer response to your post than I’d intended!

    Take care, keep writing, be awesome!

    S.J. (Scott) Varengo

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Congratulations! I do hope you don’t give up on getting your book published. If going the “traditional” route is too discouraging, go for self-publishing, but definitely read reviews on different companies. Some are what we in America call “Vanity Press,” and just want to take your money.
    I was blessed to find (on my third try!) a publisher in my state who charged a reasonable amount for her services – she advises me and takes care of the “red tape” – stuff I despise doing. We are able to meet occasionally at some halfway point between our homes and have long talks over coffee or lunch about improving my writing, formatting, and marketing. We usually begin and end our time by praying for each other. It’s wonderful to have a publisher to work with who has my best interest at heart, and with whom I have a wonderful relationship – something you aren’t likely to get with a big publisher.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. I appreciate your openness. Novels are hard to write. I’m constantly going back to the beginning, critiquing as I go. But everyone writes differently. Believing the best for you when it comes to publishing. I’m still trying to figure out the marketing part for my first novel. Blog tours might be a good idea, but I understand they can be intense and will require quite a time commitment.

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