I’m back, and I’ve had a revelation. It’s been a while since I last wrote my blog. I wasn’t really up for it. I guess because Christmas got in the way, and since the New Year I’ve been working on the sequel to my novel, so I haven’t had that much time to dedicate to my blog. After this revelation, I’ll only be blogging once or twice a month because I have a trilogy to finish.
It all started with a simple bike ride with my son and daughter. It was my son’s first real, fast bike ride, and the beginning of his adventure with bikes, and for me it was also the beginning of a wonderful stage in my life.
Several key events happened to me over the Christmas period. I decided I needed to read more books, great books, to help me become a great writer. This means I have less time for blogging as I dedicate my evenings to reading now. Two books have already inspired me this year, the Kite Runner and the Alchemist.
The Kite Runner has reminded me that family is everything. When you’re a kid (if you’re lucky), you grow up having fun, loving your parents, brothers and sisters, and the rest of your family. You make some great mates at school where you go to study and get into University. Then you become independent, make more friends, get pissed and have a laugh, and also study a bit and start to wonder what the hell you’re going to do with your life. You have to make key decisions, find a job and a career. But, just like the boy in the Alchemist, I wanted to travel and find my place to settle.
I travelled the world, and for some reason I ended up in Sevilla, Spain. I got a job teaching English in an academy, and a miracle happened. I found my wife, or she found me, or we found each other (we still argue about who actually pounced on who).
Then I began to tell her my travel stories, and I wondered if I could write a book. I began to write, first on my housemate’s laptop, until I saved up for one of my own. I wrote a travel book and self published it. It’s had over 4,000 downloads and since I changed the cover and book description it’s started to sell more than ever.
I’ve slowly become a writer. I wrote a novel and self published that as well. People are reading my books now and leaving reviews. That was always my dream. I have ideas for more books, and strive to become a novelist. I won’t give up, just like the boy in the Alchemist, and Amir in the Kite Runner. If I think back to all my favourite books: Great Expectations, Kane and Abel, Papillon, Shantaram, they all show how the world conspires against people’s dreams, but more importantly that you should never give up.
We wanted to have kids ages ago, we spoke about having a boy and a girl. We are so lucky to have two lovely kids. It was madness the first two years, and still is at times, but they are ours and we have become a family.
So it was while running next to my son, with my daughter desperately trying to keep up with us, while he rode his bike, faster than I could run, shouting out my name, shouting out Daddy as loud as he could, as he flew along the path, and I kept up with him, laughing as we both looked at each other, as if nothing could ever stop us, when I realised I am where I want to be. My whole life had been leading up to that simple moment of joy.
This summer was hard, so hard, I was a single parents for 3 weeks while my wife was in hospital. Luckily I had people to help out, and I’ll never forget those people. I’ll also never forget that feeling of not knowing when my second half would return. Every day I cherish the fact she is by my side.
I’m happy, content, and will try to live life to the max, knowing that I have two lovely kids, a lovely wife, and also a family who have supported me in everything that I have done. I know I’m lucky, I know some people can’t have kids, and it’s so sad to imagine that.
Last Sunday we were having a roast outside on the patio, listening to the soundtrack from the Theory of Everything, and I’d just said to my wife that everything is written and we have to follow our goals, when I had a flashback.
“You make lovely roasts potatoes,” she said. For some reason my great grandmother, Nanny May May, popped up in my mind.
“My Nanny May May made better ones.”
“Who was she?”
“She was my great grandmother, she lived down Hastings, not far from Brighton.” I thought back to the cosy house by the sea, walking down some steep stairs to get to the bottom of some cliffs and then finding thin black stones so we could skim them over the sea. I thought about my great grandfather Bill Bill, smoking his pipe in the conservatory. I thought back to the taste of those roast potatoes, and told my wife that hers were better.
“Really? I don’t believe it.”
“Yeah, and I remember she used to call me ratbag.”
“Ratbag? Why, because you were like a rat?”
“Actually, because I was a bit naughty, but I always finished her roasts.”
Then something clicked. I thought of Charlie and Mercedes, the two main characters of my novel, and I had a revelation. The end of my trilogy just popped up. I saw it there, so clear, so obvious, and now I know what happens.
“Oh my God,” I said, standing up and rushing to my phone.
But I couldn’t speak for two reasons. One because I had to write it down before I forgot, and two because my throat was clogged up, and a tear actually dripped down my cheek as I realised that the end was there.
Now I have to plough on, knowing that I have found my place in the world as a writer, with my wife and kids by my side, and finish my trilogy, so when my kids grow up, they can see exactly why you should never give up, and, in fact, everything is written.