I live in a large Essex village in the UK, having originally hailed from the East End of London.
I began writing when a schoolboy. In fact my first published work was an article about hobbies when I was fifteen, and I remember the excitement of seeing my name in print. The fact that it had been so heavily edited to the point of being a shadow of its former self was blanked out by my euphoria.
That’s it, I’m a writer, I convinced my young deluded self. The payment probably bought a cinema ticket. Nevertheless, I was certain I was on the road to a leisurely life of writing in some tropical paradise and enjoying untold wealth. But the hundreds of rejection slips that followed in the mail planted my feet firmly in the garden of reality.
Perseverance brought a modicum of published success in the early days of my married life. A few trade articles, short stories, a radio story, and contributed feature articles to local newspapers, kept the writing spark alive.
Later, writing began to dwindle as the responsibilities of providing for a home and four children meant putting my writing dreams on hold, and I spent the next fifty years in industry making other men rich – and fulfilling their dreams. My own visions of fame and fortune had turned into a hobby.
As retirement loomed, the plan was to return to regular writing and producing a novel. But twelve years ago my wife Ann was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Her deteriorating condition now necessitates allocating a large part of my day caring for her needs.*** So, although finding sufficient time to regularly devote to a novel is out of the question, I have returned to frequently producing articles and short stories. And since 2015 have had something published every month while achieving a 50% submission success rate. I’m quite happy with that considering the challenges.
My writing output nowadays is greater than at any other time in my life. Managing my limited time allows me to fill the unforgiving minute with 61 seconds, rather than waiting for that elusive inspiration.
*** Sadly Ann died 7th.January 2018