Thursday, 10 February 2011

We're cooking on gas...

…and, funnily enough, most of us even knew how to turn on the cooker.  Well, with so many talented people in the Brit Writers' Awards Publishing Programmea life and business coach, a university lecturer, a former English teacher, a radio presenter, an engineer, a computer network specialist, a writers’ circle chairman, a trained health visitor (later branching into peripatetic teaching and medical translation), a journalist…pause for breath…a partner in financial services, another journalist, a talented multitasking mother, a design lecturer, a multitalented actress, playwright, singer, author and carer…

The list goes on.  Pile a few PhDs into the pot and we were bound to manage really.  We might just have found the recipe for success.  If there is one ingredient we are definitely not short of, it’s commitment.  So, cup of tea in hand, we progressed to the pc—and cracked that, too!  Seriously, some of us are perhaps a little less computer literate than others, but with a genuine wish to assist, people are pooling and sharing information, and generally helping each other along.  Though writers often crave solitude, there is no doubt that the writers’ world can sometimes be a lonely one—and a puzzling one when faced with social networking, certain areas of which some might be trying to get to grips with for the first time.  The camaraderie that exists between participants is therefore a real boon.

OK, on to tasks undertaken thus far:

The all-important in-depth analysis of the manuscript.  Editing, tweaking, re-drafting, if necessary.  I, for one, am wide-eyed in awe at how much better my book will be—and that it is now absolutely aimed at the audience I intended it to be, specifically.  Thank you Imran.

Re-draft synopsis.

Re-think pitch.

Open Twitter account.

Ditto Facebook page.

Create website (thank you, Georgina, Sinead and Ian).

Market research: Look at similar books on shelves and actual sales.

Reviews—from people you’ve never met in your life and didn’t really want to be tied the chair until they’d reached the last page.

Blog…and don’t be embarrassed about the L plates.  You have to start somewhere.

Um…Oh, yes, intravenous drip of caffeine.

Ahhh, yawn and stretch.  All boxes ticked.  All tasks completed—and more Herculean tasks to follow. 

So are we desperate?  Publication at any cost?  I think I speak for the group when I say that professionalism is the byword of the Brit Writers’ Publishing Programme.  I am SURE Catherine Cooper, a retired Shropshire teacher, who won at the inaugural Brit Writers’ Awards last July, netting an impressive £10,000 prize, agrees. Please read Catherine’s positive comments in the latest press report here: A Brit Writers Star is born!

On a personal note, my son has completely gobsmacked me by reeling off a fantastic, truly thrilling outline for a book in half-an-hour flat.  We spent last night time-lining it.  For reasons I won’t go into, this is an amazing, utterly rewarding, spin-off from my participation in the Britwriters’ Awards Publishing Programme.  Desperate?  Never.  Determined…to see this “British born initiative to champion writing around the world and create an important shift in the way people of all ages and backgrounds view creative writing”?  Absolutely!

Brit Write on, I say!


  1. Love it Leanne ;0)

  2. Looks like the Brit Writers Publishing Programme is taking your household by storm - I'm looking forward to seeing what happens next!

  3. Thanks, Claire!

    Me too, Joanna. So many years floundering, now it's focus, focus. I'm about to post my next scintillating instalment up. It was just so energising to see the faces of certain “folk in the know” when they heard some of our pitches. Awestruck, I think describes it. Fabulous!

  4. I think Awestruck certainly sums it up - your pitches were fantastic!