So, here's the thing! I've had my Hawaiin mug since 1982 when we went to Wakiki Beach from Hong Kong on a two-week holiday, and I've used it continuously to drink my coffee out of since! I know, how fantastic is that? I'm thinking of applying to the Guinness Book of Records - unless you know of a mug that's lasted longer, of course?
I mean, I'm sure there are mugs out there that are older, but I bet they've been kept in cupboards wrapped in tissue paper, cotton wool balls, and knitted socks! I don't know how many other mugs the wife has bought whilst I've been merrily drinking out of my Hawaiin mug - What a mug! Also, I wonder if its worth anything? Maybe its an antique! Maybe one day someone will find my mug in an antique shop and say, "This mug belonged to the famous writer Tim Ellis!"
In fact, I've been in continuous use since 1953. I know, how old am I? But... maybe I'm an antique! Maybe I'm worth something! Maybe one day someone will find my skeleton in an antique shop and say, "How much for this bag of bones, matey?"
Anyway, what's been happening? Well, I've been slacking again! I know, but I have a reasonably sound excuse - I was peddling my bicycle in the twitterverse, out there meeting people, providing samples of my works of art for people to... well, - sample, you know the thing - It's called 'slapping the flesh' - well I thought shaking hands was called that, but apparently not because a search reveals that it's something to do with preparing human flesh for eating - yum, yum! No, don't call the doctor yet, I've remembered now - it's called 'pressing the flesh'! Don't you just love those fantabulous idioms?
So, I did write something this morning, finally stumbled over the 45,000-word line like a clapped-out cross-country runner, and had great plans to reach for the 50,000-word milestone, but I petered out, got ambushed by life. Maybe tomorrow... but that's it, isn't it? We have all these plans, ambitions, goals, but life gets in the way. I suppose I'm lucky though, because there's not a lot of life left to get in the way anymore - son's got his own life (at last), no work to wear me out and suck the creativity out of me, the wife shops on ebay, QVC, and a million other Internet places whilst I'm writing (or procrastinating). She says, "How many books have you sold now?" I tell her, she gets the calculator out, and then buys another pair of shoes, dress, bottle of perfume, or a Toy Boy! Ha, ha - not really! If she read that I'd be dead meat. Then of course, there's our babies - the five Shitzhus (Chinese lion dogs) - I'm the pack leader! There's only four here - the mum (Mim) is missing. From left to right - Buddy, Coco, Daisy, and Frodo (the dad).
So, I remember reading somewhere that self-published authors could count themselves lucky if they sold 250 copies of their book! Don't ask me where it came from, I don't know. Why 250? Who knows, maybe there was anecdotal evidence, but the point I'm making is that maybe with the advent of the ebook and the eReader that's all changed - or has it? If a book is not up to the mark in any number of areas will people still buy it? Probably not. Is 250 a reasonable ceiling? Probably!
If that's the case, then we all need to make sure that what we produce is the very best it can be, and I'm not talking just about formatting, punctuation, spelling, grammar, although you gotta get these right. I'm harping on about writing style, your voice, crisp and realistic dialogue, description that readers can see, taste, smell, touch, hear and drips off the page like honey, three-dimensional characters that we love or hate, a logical twisty-turny plot that grips the reader and doesn't let go until the very last word, a story that touches the reader in some way, and conflict and resolution - nothing left hanging.
You've done all that! Well, you could have said, instead of letting me prattle on like a fishwife! In that case, I'm done! What more is there to say other than, "Goodbye-ee!"
Hi, I'm Tim Ellis - I write a lot and I hope you enjoy what I write.