I’ve known Sue Welfare for a long time (we wrote for the same publisher in the 1990s) – but, although we live in the same part of the world, shamefully we’ve only met very briefly once, when we were both doing a library event and were then shuffled off to our different rooms to do our different workshops. It was an evening thing so we didn’t have time to sit and have a proper chat afterwards. We are, however, planning a fabulously foodie lunch next month. (And I am so going to have a hard workout first, to earn those calories!) Things in common – Sue’s a foodie, we both love dogs (I have puppy envy at the moment), we’ve both written quite a few books…
Anyway, over to Sue:
Fifty Books – Congratulations, Kate – what a fabulous, fabulous achievement!
I’ve been writing and been published as Sue Welfare, Kate Lawson, and Gemma Fox for around twenty years, and each and every time time I start a new book and open the first blank page on the computer screen I always think, ‘How do I do this?’ Each and every time, no matter how many notes I’ve written or ideas I’ve jotted down or how fired up I am about a new book.
The fear of not being able to get that idea down on the page for fear of not doing it justice is one that haunts me, and I’m sure I’m not alone in that– so my advice to myself and to anyone else in the same boat is ‘Don’t get it right, get it written’.
Don’t worry about where to start, just start anywhere, get that the bridge into your story built – just begin and write without editing, without re-reading, just make a start and get going - launch yourself. This first version of those first few thoughts, lines, paragraphs or even pages is a for your eyes only version that is off limits to everyone else, so write without anxiety, give yourself permission to explore, be side tracked, play, enjoy! All the changing, the chipping away, the reshaping and editorial decisions can be done later.
It’s easier to work with a few words than none and have something on the page rather than nothing - and nothing you write is ever wasted.
If I’m stuck for where to launch off I’ll have my characters talk to each other – leaving out the he said, she said just letting the conversation flow - and not always for inclusion on the final piece - just as a way of getting to know them and hear who they are and what they want. It’s amazing what comes up in those random conversations and how often I use something I discover in the book or as a way of enriching their backstory. It’s a great way to get started and an ideal tool to use if you find yourself getting stuck.
Anyway Kate, sounds to me like you don’t often have the ‘ where to start ‘ dilemma - I wish you every success and look forward to celebrating you 100th Book! Thank you so much for inviting me to help celebrate your 50th title
With much love,
You can follow Sue on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/sue.welfare
Her latest novel ‘One Night Only,’ published by Harper Collins is available on Kindle and in paperback: