Writing My First Book

As diligent readers of this blog will have noticed, over the years Debbie & I have been involved in transcribing diaries.  Originally these were published via Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) program, although as shared in this blog, recently I decided to discontinue this as I wanted the content to be read freely across the internet without charge.

Now one thing using KDP taught me was the fact that it is really easy to self-publish, but that creating original content that people might want to buy for their Kindle is another matter.  So that got me thinking, the kind of books I buy and like to read are very varied, but there is one gendre I come back to time and time again and that is autobiography.

Recent examples include celebrity books by Arthur Askey, Les Dawson, Leslie Crowther, Mike Yarwood, Donald Sinden & yes I’m showing my age!  Other “travel” books though such as Karen Wheeler’s “Tout series”, Peter Mayle’s “Year in Provence”or Gavin Maxwell’s “Ring of Bright Water” trilogy have always fascinated me and instead of France or Scotland, I’d like to do something similar for Wales.

I find reading about other peoples lives very interesting if written well, with the opportunity to change personal direction if warranted or at the very least be entertained.  So I thought to myself why not publish a book based on my own life, even if only I buy it it will cross off a long-standing item on my own “bucket list”!

Looking back on 57 years of life the reason I wanted to do a PhD was to publish some original research on a topic that interested me.  In fact I had two chances to do a part-time doctorate over the years.

The first when I was provisionally accepted at Birkbeck to research high energy particle physics after graduation, which I decided against as it was predicted to take around seven years, so I completed a self-funded two year part-time MSc in astrophysics instead at Queen Mary.  The second opportunity which I accepted and completed a year on was at Sheffield Hallam on the topic of groupware.  This was a hot topic in IT at the time and my employer sponsored me as it was work related.  Sadly my supervisor & good friend passed away unexpectedly and I didn’t have the heart to carry on.

Which is a rather roundabout way of saying that I’ve decided to write a book to be called “Escape to Llanfoist” that will look at the lessons learnt in my life so far and hopefully provide an interesting read as well as a sizeable income stream in my old age!  My first step creating a structured plan of various chapters and then start to fill out the gaps over time.

What about this blog I hear you say?  The answer is I plan to continue as a living diary and a non-exclusive source of inspiration for the book.  I like Facebook for short, snappy content but find llanfoist.com a lot better way of recording events with multiple pictures, more text & hyperlinks to other content.  Of course feeding the blog automatically into Facebook and Twitter allows greater dissemination to family and friends so really it’s horses for courses.

It will be interesting for me to track progress here on my new venture!  Wish me luck…



Writing My First Book

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