I was asked the other day why I became a writer. My first reaction was that I find it impossible not to be. The first thing I do when I come down in the morning is to boot up my computer, open my WIP file. Then I’ll go and make myself a cup of tea – I’m British it has to be tea! Back to the computer and I quickly check my email to see if anything needs attention. After that it’s back to the WIP to read through what I had written the day before, not so much to check if any editing was necessary but to get my head back into the story. Sometimes the words will flow, other times it’s like pulling teeth.
It’s hard to believe that I haven’t been writing my whole life, it’s that important to me now, but I have only seriously been writing for about seven years. I don’t mean I suddenly decided out of the blue to try my hand at writing then, I’d been dabbling on and off with putting words on paper for maybe a dozen years before that. I can’t even remember when I actually wrote my first piece of fiction but what I do know is that it wasn’t finished. In fact for a good few years I never finished anything!
It must be over ten years ago that I began the story that one day ended up being QUESTOR, but back then it was just a few chapters and I had no idea where the story was headed. I got stuck so put it on one side and started something new; that was pretty much the norm back then. It took a friend some years later introducing me to fan fiction writing before I actually completed something. I knew damn well I could write better stories than some of those being lauded on various fan sites and with my friend’s encouragement I actually stuck at it and finished a story – and folks liked it.
It’s fair to say that was something of a wake-up call for me. I wrote more and more; my stories weren’t particularly long but they were complete and I felt good about that.
As time passed I found myself able to write longer and more complex stories and the time came that I wondered if I could actually write something that someone might like to publish. Thing was during my foray into fan fiction I had become enamoured with gay romance and so the first story I submitted – and eventually got published – was a gay historical romance. But that’s another story:)
During the last year or so I felt I wanted to branch out into more mainstream writing and I remembered those stories I had started all those years earlier that I had thought were promising, but had petered out. I wondered how I would feel about those stories, those beginnings of stories now. Thank goodness for computers, because I had most everything I’d ever written. I had to do a bit of digging but I found the ones I was looking for and spent the next couple of weeks reading through them. Some I shook my head at and turned to the next one, but I did find two or three stories that I thought were worth working on. That’s how I started working on QUESTOR again. It took me some time to knock it into shape and then some months to write the rest of the story and get to the point where I could finally type the end, but by then I felt I had something worthwhile.
And I’m happy to say that my publisher agreed.
P.S. If you are interested at all in my gay romantic fiction, visit the website of Stevie Woods