Journey

Everybody has a book in them, or so it's said. But it's something else again getting it onto the page and to a place where it might be shared.

I have been writing since I was a child. Always, my dream was to see my name on the spine of a book. Books gave me life, a dream to live by. Through their portals I could escape easily into other worlds. Books also saved my life ... yes, really!

This is the story of my books and my journey as an author. I hope it will inspire and give hope to writers young and old.

Getting published can be a waiting game. It's hard .. and it's getting harder. But then sometimes it happens in unexpected ways and suddenly, we are living the dream. And we realise that it isn't after all the winning that is important so much as the journey along the way.

I would love to hear from anyone who connects with what is written here. A signed copy of any of my books is available. You have only to write and ask:

janineharrington53@gmail.com







Tuesday, 29 March 2011

TRUTH can be stranger than FICTION

At present I am embracing writing in all its diversity, all its forms ... I have a thriller I am working on, a biography, and ideas for so much more. I also enjoy writing poetry.

Every author has his or her own way. I like to write a bit every day. If I'm not in the mood, then I still linger over words, and the following day chase them up into some kind of order. And I'm not someone who plans a novel with a beginning, middle and an end before they start. I like to have a title page which, to me, means that a new book is now on the go for real. And rather than making notes about how it might develop, I'm right in there from the first page, being carried along by the story, well up for the roller coaster ride of spills and thrills. Of course there is research. It's important to be accurate with events, even if a book is fiction. And yes, there are times when I'm stuck, waiting for the right mood, or the right vibrations to grab me and take me on. But it's all right there, bubbling away inside me, and I'm never happier than when I have a book on the go.

On average, I write a book a year, but during 2010 I wrote two which strangely were published the same month. It was if I was making up for the previous breakdown year of 2009 when everything came to a grinding halt. 

Writing is like air ... I need to feel it pulsing through my veins in order to feel alive. And oh, the joy when it all comes together, filling the virgin page, slowly creating the book ... another book which was always just there inside me, waiting for the right time. Now there is Tony, my partner, who joins me in every venture. Writing is no longer a lone occupation. He also becomes very involved in the book, excited by its plots, its characters ... even to the extent that we have conversations in character which I am able to use. And he's so good at coming up with the kind of twists I never even dreamed of, very on the edge. People would get a strange idea indeed if they were to listen in to our conversations and the manner in which we jump so easily from true life into the pages of the current book, mimicing the characters, moving on the plot, until we have to dash home to get it down on paper .. or the keyboard.

I am so pleased now that I taught myself to speed type during a particularly bad year in 1979 when I was agoraphobic. With arthritis in my hands how easily they slip over the keyboard on a good day. I can wipe a keyboard of letters in a few weeks of typing .. much to the annoyance of Tony who needs to see the letters to type onto the screen!

Only through writing, it seems, have I been able to take control of my life.

And when I look back on my writings to date now published, they form stepping stones, markers in time, memorials to past events, ways in which I have overcome the odds ... and survived:

1. A Crying Game: The Diary of a Battered Wife, published by Mainstream, 1984
2. Behind Closed Doors: Advice for Families with Violence in the Home, Thorsons, 1988
3. Home is Where the Hurt Is: Surviving Sexual Abuse, Thorsons, 1989
4. Nina & Vic: A World War II Love Story, Woodfield, 2004
5. Secrets of the Grimoire, Nightingale, 2008
6. Brothers: A First World War Story of Courage & Commitment, Farthings, 2010

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