New extract, new author, new writing tips

I think I need to hone my response when someone comments on the lack of my wedding ring as today’s conversation with Sarah at work didn’t go swimmingly.

“Oh Graham, what’s happened to your wedding ring?”

“Sarah, I took it off because I have been officially divorced for two days now, I am single and living with my parents and seeing my kids at weekends.”

Sarah finished making her cup of tea rather quickly and left me alone in the kitchen.

I guess my response was a bit overpowering; in the same way as an innocent ‘how are you’ enquiry at the tea point might not be anticipating a ‘I have got cancer and only 4 weeks to live’ response…

Divorce does tend to dominate your life for a while. I have lost a lot of confidence in myself, in my ability to communicate and in my expectation that others will be interested in what I have to say.

My social life has suffered as a result. Confident people have more friends. Fact.

My social life has also suffered because, when we divorced, most of our ‘mutual’ friends took sides with my ex and are now giving me the cold shoulder. Or is that just my imagination? My lack of confidence is making me paranoid.

I remember when I used to be in with the drinking crowd at work. Every Friday night, most Friday lunchtimes and other nights too, I would get invited to various drinks to celebrate Fred’s leaving, Emily’s engagement, John’s promotion, Gemma’s new hairdo or Eamon’s ‘coming out party’. I am now considered too old to receive such invites, or maybe too married. We will see if they start flooding in to my inbox again now that I’m divorced.


Graham Hope is a fictional character who makes his entrance into the world in my forthcoming book ‘Six Months to Get a Life’.

I am thoroughly enjoying writing this book. In a short period of time I have learnt a lot about the whole process, from picking up valuable writing and editing tips through to information on how to promote your book through effective marketing, social media usage and book pricing.

I have been so impressed with other authors’ preparedness to share their secrets. I am going to share some of the valuable tips I have picked up from others in the coming weeks via this blog.

This week I stumbled across a couple of ‘writing process blog tour’ entries that reassured me. Writing isn’t something I do from 9-5, sitting in my study.

Until now I have been worried that I haven’t been systematic enough in my approach to writing. I write at irregular times and often in odd places. Often on the Northern Line. Delia Sherman and William Alexander suggest that I am not alone. Reassuring!

3 thoughts on “New extract, new author, new writing tips

  1. C.V. Madison June 23, 2014 / 4:16 pm

    Writing isn’t just a cut and dry you sit down at 5 every morning ave make yourself write. It’s sitting down while dinner is in the oven. It’s writing on a lunch break. It’s jotting down notes here and there as you have a spare moment. It’s marathon writing sessions that happen when you have a great scene going and you go to work tired the next morning but feeling great because that chapter is finished and now you’re on to another.

    All the “advice” I’ve ever been given was just what worked for another writer. You do what works for you. You write when and where it works. And when you get that first publishing contract, you know you did it all the right way.

    Best of luck on your novel.

    • Ben Adams June 24, 2014 / 7:18 am

      Thanks for the comment. It is great to read advice but you are right, sometimes what other people do doesn’t work for you. I guess I will keep plugging away and work out what works for me.

  2. Bronwyn Elsmore July 5, 2014 / 7:00 am

    Hi, I read your extract. Good luck with the book. There should be a good readership for this topic.
    In my novel, Every Five Minutes, I have someone who keeps wearing their ring as an anti-wedding ring.

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