Why? - Colette McCorMick - This Writing Life #12
I'm always fascinated to know what inspires authors to write their books. Today, I'm delighted to welcome Colette MCormick to my blog with a guest post about why she writes.
Her latest book, An Uncomplicated Man, is published 5th December.
Over to you, Colette ...
It's a well-known fact amongst writers that the big bucks are reserved for the lucky few while the rest of use fight for the scraps. So why do we do it? That’s a question that I’ve been asked more than once, and for me the answer is simple – because I enjoy it. There is something really satisfying about starting out with the kernel of an idea and turning it into the finished product that’s out there for anyone to read.
My first three books all started life in a conversation. Things I Should Have said and Done is the result of a throw away comment that my husband made during a phone call. I was away from home when he joked (I think) that they could manage without me. Within minutes of putting the phone down, Ellen was dead and her husband was a single parent.
Ribbons in Her Hair came to life when I was talking to a colleague who said that she had never felt loved by her mother. Susan came into my head and that book was her story.
I have something that my youngest son said to thank for Not My Brother’s Keeper. He was talking about clearing up the mess that his brother had left in the bedroom when he left home but I gave the younger brother in my story a bigger ‘mess’ to deal with and the story went from there. All just random conversations that the other people probably don’t even remember resulted in me holding a book that I’d written in my hand and you can’t put a price on how that made me feel.
If I was in it for the money, I’d have given up long ago. Apparently, the average amount a writer earns from their books is something like £11,000 per annum but I can only dream of earning that much. The chance would be a fine thing. However, when I see that my rating has gone up on Amazon it gives me such a thrill and oh my goodness, I can’t tell you how happy a good review makes me feel. These are the reasons that I write books.
Would I still do it even if there wasn’t the promise of publication? Of course I would. If I didn’t my head would be full of characters doing all sorts of things and there’s only so much space in there.
The idea for my latest book came just as randomly too. Back in the ‘bad old days’ when I had to do dialysis three times a week, I spent a lot of time just sitting there, thinking about all sorts of things. On one occasion, my dad came to mind and was quickly followed by his favourite song Danny Boy. I thought that would make a great title for a book. The idea that I came up with that night didn’t work out but one of the secondary characters, Daniel Laither, came to the fore and it became his story. I can’t wait to hold a copy in my hand, think of my dad and remember walking down the aisle to his favourite song. Priceless.
Originally a city girl, Colette has made her home in a one of the many former mining villages in County Durham. When not working as a retail manager for a large children’s charity she will more than likely be writing, even if it’s only a shopping list. She also enjoys cooking, gardening and taking the dog on long walks in the countryside near her home. She has been married for almost forty years and has two grown up sons.
Facebook: Colette McCormick -author
website: Colette McCormick on Books and Life in General
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