Unlike most people, I have an enduring memory about the beginnings of learning to read. My dad had a huge (to me at age three) book full of fascinating things I would eventually learn were molecular diagrams and chemical formulae. These mysteries were so alluring that I tried extremely hard to learn to read that book. Of course, I was started on primers – especially early level “Ladybird” books. But I checked my progress against that book of dad’s!
Reading featured throughout childhood. I discovered that I had definite tastes. It was impossible to persuade me to read a book I had no interest in! Something which would be a real problem in high school, when these things called “book reviews” were required, usually for the most boring books (at that age) the education authorities could think of!
Interestingly, before that started, I was already accumulating quite a library! It was mostly science fiction, with an almost complete set of Tarzan books. I had also discovered a love of writing. I was writing whenever I wasn’t reading…
It was within a matter of months that I decided that I would be an author. There could be no doubting the fulfilment of my expectations…
I pursued that ambition for years. Indeed, I avowed that I was only working in other jobs to earn money, until my success came.
Eventually, marriage and then a young family override even that cherished ambition. The novels were stored away.
Occasionally, writing would return to the fore. In fact, it did so once so strongly that I actually finished a novel. The rest consisted of lots of starts and little else.
Part of the problem was that in those early years of writing I’d used a typewriter – one handed but with respectable speed. Later, the typewriter had died and all that remained was pen and paper – with the prospect of huge costs to get the longhand turned into proper manuscript. In time, the computer happened. The first serious computer was in a time when word processing software was pretty good already, but you could only fit maybe two or three chapters in a single file! Also, I just couldn’t relate to the computer the way I had the typewriter.
We arrive at today. I still couldn’t write if I only had the desktop computer! I’d struggle just as much with a laptop, with the weight and the ridiculous mouse. It might sound very strange, but the thing that has enabled my return to authorship dreams is my iPod! Small and light, with autospellchecking and predictive text, I can rattle along at a surprising pace!
I shouldn’t neglect one other factor. The blogging software “WordPress” offers an excellent development environment for the author. By keeping the “blog” private, security is ensured. With its clever structure, however, it’s possible to keep notes and were background references handy while using the standard posting aspect to allow the creation of the book chapter by chapter. Further, if you have others helping out, then they can be given only as much access as is needed.
I’m hoping that by this time next month I’ll have a netbook. Hopefully, using the WordPress app on that, I’ll have the perfect combination!