When you first start to write, I would advise wide experimentation. Let me explain – I took the time when I first went to a writing class to write poems, memoir pieces, flash fiction, short stories and eventually several genres of novel, including historical, time slip and contemporary. I am so grateful for this experience as it helped me to identify who I was as a writer.
A scary step on the path to publication is to let other people read/hear your work. I consider myself fortunate to have attended a writing class where the tutor (Sue Johnson) encouraged her students to read their work out loud in the class. This, initially excruciating experience, actually helped to lessen my fear of others having an opinion on my work. I also joined the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s wonderful New Writer’s Scheme, which is a scheme allowing for the critique by a published author of a full-length novel for each year you are a member. These critiques were invaluable in pointing out my plot holes, writing habits, overused words and expressions. The constructive comments were so helpful in revising a novel to publication standard.
A by-product of being on the RNA New Writer’s Scheme was to meet many other published and aspiring authors at the events run by the RNA. Finding my “tribe” has helped tremendously for networking.
Another thing that helped in my writing apprenticeship was to enter competitions, again I tried competitions for all sorts of story lengths and subjects. It was the fact that I was beginning to shortlist in these competitions that gave me the encouragement to carry on writing and supplied the clues that maybe I was on the right track with my work. In 2016, I won Choc Lit Publishing’s Search for a Star competition and the novel that won was published as The Girl on the Beach the following year.
Lots of authors talk about the fear of the second book, but as I’d been writing for some time by the time I needed to send another novel to my publisher, I already had quite a few more novels written and almost ready to go. Having said that, I learned a great deal from the publisher’s editing process working on The Girl on the Beach and that helped revise my subsequent book.
I talk about an apprenticeship above, but in truth I am still learning all of the time and changing the way I write. My fifth book will be published on 17 November 2020 – Christmas at the Little Beach Café. I truly believe that writing is something that evolves and adapts to the different stages of your life and experiences.
Biography for Morton S. Gray
Morton lives with her husband, two sons and Lily, the tiny white dog, in Worcestershire, U.K. She has been reading and writing fiction for as long as she can remember, penning her first attempt at a novel aged fourteen. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and The Society of Authors.
Morton’s latest release is Christmas at the Little Beach Café published as an e-book and audio download on 17 November 2020.
Blurb for Christmas at the Little Beach Café
Run away to the little beach café this Christmas …
Five years ago at Christmas, solicitor Justin Sadler made the decision to leave his comfortable existence behind and move to the coast. Since then, he’s tried his best to ignore the festive season and, as he sits in the little beach café and reflects on that fateful night when his life was turned upside down, he expects his fifth Christmas alone to be no different to any of the others since he made his escape.
But when he encounters a mystery woman on the beach, he soon realises he may have found a fellow runaway and kindred spirit. Could Justin finally be ready to move on and let Christmas into his life again?
Christmas at the Little Beach Café is released on 17th November 2020 and can be pre-ordered now for Kindle or as an audiobook through Amazon https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B08L3VTGZL/ref=pd_rhf_gw_p_img_1?_encoding=UTF8
Get in touch with Morton
You can catch up with Morton on her website www.mortonsgray.com, on Twitter – @MortonSGray, her Facebook page – Morton S. Gray Author – https://www.facebook.com/mortonsgray/ and Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/morton_s_gray/