A Change Is Better Than A Holiday

Jun 30, 2017Inspiration, Travel, Writing

I’ve had a mammoth week of change.

I moved house three times, went to a writers’ conference in Dublin and started a new life as an artist in residence.

I’m exhausted, but happy.

Some weeks are much better than others. Change beats holidays hands down.


It was my first trip to Ireland. Dublin is a very different city to Amsterdam. Yet it has something of great value for an author.

It has a history as a city of writers.

I didn’t know this up front. Then I discovered the Writers Museum.  I came face to face with Swift and Sheridan, Shaw and Wilde, Yeats, Joyce and Beckett. Some of the biggest names you can think of in writing.

All of them started their journey in Dublin. I suppose in a way, so did I.

A Sense of Community

I take my profession seriously. Yet there are many things I still have to experience.

This past week I moved up a gear. The reason I was in the Irish capital was to go to a writers’ conference—my first. Organised by the independent author service, BooksGoSocial, I found the experience invigorating.

Every author I met was enthusiastic about their career. Naturally, some were further into it than others. Some were just starting out. Many were going through the same struggles I have encountered. Many had overcome these teething problems to ground a lucrative career.

All through my entire adventure as a published writer, the sense of community which is an integral part of the independent author scene, has always proved inspiring.

For me, the high point of the conference was the opportunity to pitch a story to a Hollywood producer.

I have had to get up to speak to a room full of people before, but this was daunting. I stood in front of 50 other authors and got tongue tied. I turned my back on the producer to compose myself. He told me to turn around and start again

I had a conundrum.

I am currently working on a series about a witch, my previous novel was a piece of literary fiction. I could not decide which was better to pitch. On advice I did the witch book.

The producer didn’t go for it.

He could not see a way to cast a teenage witch trapped in the body of a five-year-old. His argument was there are no famous five-year-olds. In Hollywood you need a big name to drive a movie.

Later, other writers came up to me and said they loved the idea. Some of them even had solutions as to how a movie could be made with my rather unusual character. Having that feedback was one of the best things that happened all weekend.

Pitching a Second Time

Not to be deterred I asked him afterwards if I could talk about my other story.

This I did, and he found the story of an Aboriginal man in search of his identity something which had real potential. I now have to send off an email with a one paragraph description.

This is something I am still trying to formulate. Writing a novel is easy compared to writing a pitch. I will get there, as I have with everything else, with a little help from my writer friends.

In the coming weeks I will be the artist in residence at a small community in Amsterdam. I will be blogging about my experiences, so don’t forget visit this website to see what I’m getting up to.


Have you had an inspiring week?

Leave a comment below or join the mailing list and let me know.

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