Tuesday, 18 September 2018

My life story!

The title of this post sounds very grand! I have just published a second blog on this platform which describes many events during my life, from birth and life as a child almost to the present day (at which point, this blog took over). I have had much material and photos on my computer for a long time, so this week, I went back and edited it and put it online. It is formatted in the reverse order to a normal blog with the most recent event appearing last, so it appears more like a book.
my hair is longer now

I have written very little about my family because I feel that I would need permissions and some are no longer alive, obviously parents and grand-parents. My older brother Philip died in 2012 so I have avoided writing about the "Gloucester Browns" as we used to call them in the family. I have also missed out several periods in my life, mainly in my working life. I really ought to add a post about Surrey Duplicating in Weybridge. I took on a print shop with awful results. Little old ladies would come into the shop for a photocopy and hear me swearing, hands covered in ink in the workshop behind. 

When I look back at myself in the UK in the 1980s and 1990s, I cannot believe it is the same person. Some of the things I created in electronics leave me baffled as to how I did it. It is as if my brain was completely different from the brain I have now. Or should I say, "mind". The physical brain is the same and for sure I am not so bright now on account of being 75 but I am still amazed. Totally different. When I look at those circuit boards (and I still have some of my software notes, lots of intricate drawings showing bits of data, because I was working right down at machine level) I just don't know how I did it. And some of the crazy things I did, risks I took. I feel like a totally different person now, with different sensations of the world about me. Not better... different. I have plenty of material for my novel. Even the truth is almost stranger than fiction.

Maybe I will add more later or maybe I will incorporate them into my novel. So this is really just about me! It is full of disasters so, if bad news sells newspapers, then maybe disasters will send my blog viral and I can earn lots of money from Google advertising.

Who is going to read my autobiography? Maybe a few friends but that won't make me rich and I want to make money writing. So I will weave parts of my life story into my novel. But I can change anything I like. So I can write about people and events which I can't write about in the autobiography because I can change names and circumstances so there will be no link to the actual people or events.

I know this is not a new idea, to turn a life story into a novel. Authors take material from real life, observing people around them. I have been reading several book on writing and one theme keeps on coming back, that is the importance of building the characters. I thought this was a great idea! To make the personalities so strong that they write the book for me. I will be in the book under a different name and the narrative is in the third person. I will not be the person you know, I can invent what I like. My other main character is a celebrity classical pianist, Quentin Ultramort, who we meet in the first chapter annoying my father with his extrovert manner in a concert. But my father in the book is nothing like my real father.
Although I follow Quentin in his career as one of his fans, we actually meet in person in France and devise a theme park based on a computer, the name of the book is Logic Park. We both attend a local church for expats and this is a rich source of characters. Another character in the book is a guy obsessed with lifts, elevators in the USA. He comes into the plot when he is employed to build elevators into a deep valley where the park is to be built. People die! This is black humour.
I study law as well as logic design (which was part of my real work) and I have to defend Quentin in court.
So far I have written about 12,000 words and 100k is my target. 
I had another idea about the book and that was to publish it as a website with hyperlinks all over the place. I could add illustrations, even offering the reader an alternative ending depending on what they had chosen earlier. I have to think of something different, there are thousands of books out there and thousands of frustrated authors who can't even get their 5th or 6th book accepted by a publisher. What hope for me? Well, I am a naïve optimist.
And maybe writing the book will take my mind off the awful political situation here and also in the UK as they agonise over what to agree with the EU over Brexit! It is chaos.

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