Saturday, April 25, 2020

Did I honestly write that? Tricia McGill

Book 4 and the final in my Settlers series is coming in May. For links to all my books go to my BWL author page


One thing we writers know what to do when we are in forced isolation is, of course, write. It’s strange, but we spend a lot of time sitting in front of our screen (or wherever we chose to write) and in my case with only my dogs for company, but now that I am being warned that I should stay home for my own safety I am, like many others, becoming stir crazy. Difference is, that normally when I hit a snag in my writing and just need a break, I nip down to the shops. All that is now at a standstill while we order online and have our necessities delivered.

When I get bored I mainly do one of two things—I move furniture that should be left where it is, and I buy things. In this past week alone I have bought a new printer which has just been delivered and set up, two lots of grocery shopping (Because I forgot a few things with the first order), a new torch just in case the power goes off in the middle of the night, and yesterday bought four items of clothing which I do not really need but they were a bargain <big sigh here> and I never could resist a bargain. I rearranged my study, moving my desk and printers around to suit wintertime which is just around the corner. I can now see out into my garden while at my computer, but unfortunately it seems that even the birds seem to have gone quiet. Perhaps the braver ones have headed north where it is warmer. No doubt they are wondering where all the humans have gone.

Anyway, to explain my heading. While rummaging through old files I came across a story that I wrote many years ago, so thought I would revive it. Was I in for a shock? I have never seen so many bloopers in my life and at times have thought of abandoning it or changing genres. It might still get put back in that dark corner where it probably belongs. To explain, one of the worst mistakes I found was my overuse of words such as “he expounded” or “he exploded”, when a simple “he said” would do just as well.  What was I thinking?

My hero was not as heroic as he should be and in fact I started to dislike him when he became a bit cocky. There’s a big difference between being sure of your charms and just being downright big-headed. That would not do for one of my heroes and how I ever wrote one scene I have no idea. Of course that has been trashed.

I had my characters using a telephone when of course everyone uses their mobiles these days. It came as quite a reality check when it hit me how times have changed in the past 20 years. Most of the shops now have automatic check-outs, and the shelves in the supermarkets give us so many choices I personally get a headache searching for exactly what suits my needs. How my mother would have loved having her shopping delivered. Having a large family to feed, she shopped most days for food and necessities. The baker and the milkman were the only daily deliveries. Upside of that was that the shopkeepers all knew her by name. As things are currently, we barely get the chance to say a quick ‘thank you’ to the delivery man as our shopping is left by our door because we must keep that safe distance. My dogs barked at the open door a while back because someone walked past our unit, and that was all the excitement for today—apart from the delivery man and our daily walk around the nearby park.

Keep safe and write up a storm. And if you have someone there that you can hug, do it as often as you can. It’s becoming a sad world when our contact with another human is being denied.

Visit my web page for excerpts etc.


4 comments:

  1. Finding an old mss can either shock or surprise us. Keep hitting those keys

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  2. That's funny! I just wrote a blog post about mistakes and typos I've found when editing my novels. It's amazing how much we grow from book to book. Keep writing!

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  3. So true! I have re-read older books and wish I could go back and change things. My writing has changed over the years, hopefully for the better.

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  4. Loved this post, Tricia! I too cannot resist a bargain - too many times according to the closet I just organized.

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