Tuesday, April 25, 2006

A Little More About Me


Giving up full-time teaching to become a freelance writer in 2002 was not that hard a transition. Many things happened that helped me to make this decision, most beyond my control, which is another story I will save for another day. Even so, I know now it was the right thing to do and I'm pleased I did it.

My main aim was to write my children's novel, the one that had been brewing in the back of my mind for years. I had already written the first seven chapters whilst I was still teaching but it was frustrating not having the time I wanted to do it.

The worse thing was losing the cleaner, who came in once a week and did all my ironing, polished, hovered, sorted out the clutter the children made. Oh, those were the days. I remember them well. Now I'm expected to do it all and to be quite honest most of the time the housework does not get done.However, sitting at home, writing your novel does not earn you any money and if I was going to be allowed to stay at home when my youngest child started school, I was going to have to earn some money. You can only say you’re a stay at home mum for so long, especially when you're not actually doing any housework.

So, I started by writing short stories for women's magazines and had some success although, it did not come to the amount of money I was earning as a full-time teacher and the whole family were beginning to feel the difference in my drastic cut in earnings. It helped a little when I branched out into article and feature writing. I had quite a bit more success with regular features in my local paper the Newbury Weekly News and the monthly county magazines. But, I was still not earning enough to justify being at home.

It was 2005 and I had to do something pro-active, as my son was due to start at playgroup. I did not want to have to get a part-time job whilst he was at school. What on earth could an ex-teacher who wants to be a writer do?That's when it hit me. Of course, I could re-vamp all those teacher resources I'd made for years and years and see if anyone wanted to publish them. So, that is what I did and here I am now. Still writing, still not really earning enough money to justify my existence as a writer but building up a portfolio of work that will help me on to bigger and better things.

My children’s novel is complete and with an agent who is considering it and I’ve started the sequel and another series for younger children. I have also written seven picture books, although all sadly unpublished. My main aim, as I said in my very first blog, is to be a highly acclaimed children's author. I believe I am on the right path to achieving this aim.

1 comment:

Anita Marion Loughrey said...

Todays blog was inspired by an email sent to me this morning by my friend and fellow writer, Penny Rossel. We met at a SCBWI Professional Series meeting in London and both are members of Wordpool.

It was also an excuse to upload my photograph so I could add it to my profile page. A big thank you should go to Candy Gourlay, who explained how to reduce the size of the photo so it would actually upload.

Now if anyone could tell me how to get my previous posts to list under the archives, everything would be wonderful.

Best wishes to all.
Anita