We were recently lucky enough to speak to the wonderful Catherine Rix, author of the hilarious book, Miss, Me Daddy Has Ya Knickers in His Pocket! She spoke to us a little about her writing journey, the process of the book and why she wrote it and what inspired her!
I have always wanted to write. For as long as I can remember I have wandered around with stories in my head and until recently I thought this was the same for everyone! I constantly find myself making up stories about the people around me in waiting rooms or restaurants and I am often heard to ask, “Imagine if…”
Eventually, circumstances dictated a change in direction for my professional life; I gave up working as a teacher and I was finally presented with the time and freedom to write. To begin with, I wrote for myself as an act of catharsis but as my confidence grew I wanted to share my experiences with a wider audience; the dream of seeing my name on the cover of a book which I had written actually began to look like a possibility.
Deciding that my work was completed was probably the most difficult. I was constantly torn between wanting someone to read my manuscript and being terrified that it wouldn’t be good enough. Eventually, I decided to set myself a deadline, much like the coursework deadlines I had previously set for students. Having stuck to my deadline I then read my own work twice; once to check content, names etc. and finally to look at nothing more than punctuation and grammar.
Waiting to hear from a potential publisher was nerve-wracking but the feeling of euphoria when I opened the email from Olympia more than compensated for the chewed fingernails. It was amazing to see in black and white that someone thought my work was good enough; finally, at the age of 52, I had confirmation that I was good enough.
The team at Olympia were fabulous, no question was too trivial for their immediate attention as they held my hand through the editing and design procedures, right through to the media and publicity section of my journey. However, none of this seemed real until the morning a massive box of books arrived. My book, with my name on the front! I was so excited that I found myself accidentally sending emails and messages to myself!
Working from home requires discipline; there is always something to do, a dog to walk, horse to ride, grass to cut… Everyone has a preferred way of working. Some writers need silence, others have the need for a very regular routine and work at the same time of day every day and others force themselves to complete a minimum daily word count. I carry a notebook (or use the app on my phone) and jot down phrases and ideas as they pop, randomly into my head. I try to write each day but sometimes life just gets in the way, and for me that is a good thing, as long as I have my notes, I can make up the time, occasionally writing in bed!
For the days when I am drawing a complete blank, a good gallop across the moors usually resets my creative spark!