September update: mostly moving

Ruth Livingstone, writer, author and bloggerBad Month for Writing

Oh, no! It’s time for the 5 Year Project monthly update.

Sadly, I’ve not achieved much over the past two months, from the point of view of writing. Family and life events have taken all my attention. Continue reading “September update: mostly moving”

August update: the final draft

I am taking part in the 5 Year Project, and my aim is to get a novel written and published.

As regular readers know, I have partly succeeded, because I have written two novels. The first one is historical fiction, set in the Tang Dynasty, China. Sadly the novel remains unpublished. I have been unable to get an agent interested, despite good feedback. Either agents don’t “feel passionate” or it’s “not the type of thing we’re looking for.” Continue reading “August update: the final draft”

Guest blogs. Are they worth doing?

What I’ve learnt from writing guest posts for other people.

This year I’ve written three guest blogs, and contributed a small section to a fourth one. I thought it would be useful to reflect on the process and consider what value, if any, came from writing these pieces. The posts were all based on my coastal walking adventures, but covered a number of different topics:

  • Wales: as seen through the eyes of a “foreigner”.
  • Solo walking: why more women don’t do it, and why they should.
  • Challenges: setting your own.
  • Footpaths: their importance and why I value them.

Continue reading “Guest blogs. Are they worth doing?”

Shortlisted for an Award

As a writer, you learn to expect the unexpected.

Me with bookI discovered, almost by accident, that I am on the shortlist for an award…

for my non-fiction book
Walking the English Coast: A Beginner’s Guide.

The International Rubery Book Award is designed specifically for small independent  presses and for self-published writers.

I notice that the winners for of the 2015 and 2016 non-fiction awards were both books about the coast. For that reason, and because the standard seems very high, I don’t expect to win. But it’s wonderful to be shortlisted.

Here is what they say about my book:

Walking the English Coast: A Beginner’s Guide 
Ruth Livingstone
A book written by a GP who decided to follow her own advice about fitness and embarked on the ambitious project of walking all 5,500 miles of the British Coast.  Written in a deceptively straightforward style, it offers practical advice that you feel you ought to know, but actually don’t, from what shoes to wear to how to deal with cows.  It’s the kind of book you glance at, intending to pick out a few sections, then can’t put down.

It’s been a dry period for my writing.

dry period for writingI’ve entered several short stories into competitions with no luck and continued my fruitless quest for agents for my two novels, again with no luck…

It’s been a long time since I submitted my book and, to be honest, I thought it had been rejected. What a great way to start the week! And it’s funny what some encouragement will do… it spurred me on to find a developmental editor for my sci-fi novel.

Time to move forward and get my next book published.