why are you reading this? My now-friend Jane over on How Publishing Really Works has just commented on similar matters on her blog. I am trying to remember how I reached her blog in the first place.
I think it started with the Whirlwind. I had been feeding her books from my collection of children's books. A great many of these come from the 50's, 60's and early 70's. I collected most of them from second-hand shops in the early 70's with the vague thought that they "might be useful one day". They have been, but not quite in the way I planned. Back then I thought I was going to be a teacher. Life had other plans for me.
There was a long period when I could not even access my own collection. I went back to do more study. I tutored to keep body and mind (if not body and soul) together. There was no time to read, no time to explore the city I went to live in and learned to love, there was no money to buy books and no time to think about writing anything but the thesis and the letters I had set myself to write.
But, I knew the books were there. My father kept most of them safe even when my mother was saying they should be passed on to other people.
Now the Whirlwind and other children read them as well - and sometimes information about the authors is sought on the internet.
Because the Whirlwind wanted to know I found some of Elinor Lyon's books were being reprinted by Fidra - and that Elinor Lyon was still alive. I had tried to write to her while I was living in London but there had been no reply. Her previous publishers had simply failed to pass the letter on. Perhaps they did not have an address for her. I asked Vanessa Robertson at Fidra if she would pass a letter on? Of course.
A letter was sent and answered - with enthusiasm. I am sorry we did not make contact sooner. I still carry on an e-mail correspondence with her son, a witty and intelligent man I hope to meet some day.
And, just as importantly, there was Vanessa's occasional blog post in which she mentioned Jane and Nicola Morgan and other people. I have come to know them all virtually. I may meet them in real life one day or I may not. There is no writing support group I can join here so they are my writing support group even though they do not read what I have written. Vanessa has read one effort and was very encouraging.
I did not have time to write creatively until recently. I know that sounds as if I am making excuses - anyone can find time to write - but I was writing other things. Oh there were times when I would put ideas down. There are outlines there and, in the past few years, there have been some rough drafts of entire books. Now I can, in a still busy life, make time - and I am going to go on making the most of it while I can.
But, tell me, if you are reading this - how did you get here? It matters to me.