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Second Chances?

24th January 2021 |

What would you do if you had the chance to live your life again? What changes could you make? Would you want to? It might be a challenge to avoid the mistakes we made as youngsters without the benefit of hind sight. But what if we took a different path and missed the key opportunities that have created and added to our success and current happiness? Imagine deciding to take that year out between work and college and travel. That might be fine but if it meant we didn’t meet up with the fellow freshers that have been our best and dearest friends since then…retracing the past might mean losing as well as gaining.

I don’t think the same thing would happen if we went through that file of short stories, poems, novels, finished and unfinished and revived them. I’m sure if like me, you’ve realised the story you wrote several years ago that failed to reach a long list wasn’t actually as good as you believed at the time. Perhaps it simply needs a few tweaks, a more eye-catching title or it may require a longer rewrite. As time has elapsed since the first creative rush, I wonder if you can feel more dispassionately about it? You may even find you can approach it with a different mindset; an enquiring one that recognises the problems and is keen to have a go at solving them.

That’s what I plan to do this year. First, I’m relaunching Virgin at Fifty. Why? I still believe it is a good story, it has some great reviews and yet…what I know now is that the cover is inappropriate and I totally failed on the advertising and marketing. I reckon everyone deserves a second chance if possible and this is going to be my novel’s chance. If it still fails to be noticed and enjoyed, I will know I’ve done all I can and perhaps, like my stories, it is not as good as I imagined.

I still like the main character, Angie. I like the minor characters and the mix of humour and pathos as she tries to create and understand the new life she has embarked on. It’s not called Virgin at Fifty for nothing.

So, if like Angie you have nothing to lose, dust off those stories and novels and give it a go.

What’s stopping you?

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