Cool App - Bye Bye Typos
As a writer I'm always on the lookout for help spotting typos. This app has made my life so much easier when it come to proof reading, and being dyslexic I need all the help I can get. In this video I show you how I use the app for work and my personal life. See what you think and let me know by commenting below or on my youtube video.
Please also hit those all important like buttons as well.
A Short Story
In 2012 I had an idea for a short story, two actually. However, I was busy writing my previous novels and so it has taken five years to write just one of them.
'Slip' is loosely based on a true story about my mum and one of her sisters. The idea for 'slip' was already alive in my head, it just needed some soul. I remembered my mum and my auntie, who lives in Canada, having some kind of unresolved issue a few years back. So I called my mum. She told me what had happened.
On my aunts last visit, my mum told me she was apprehensive. Like so many of us, things had been said and done over the years, but not talked about. My mum had written a letter before her sisters visit and put it in the post to Canada.
My aunt only spent a day with us, but it was lovely and the whole family was there. My mum is the eldest with two younger sisters and one brother. And that day is a memory I will treasure forever. All my cousins and their children came, and everyone had a good time.
I remember after my aunt returned home my mum was still upset. My aunt had not mentioned the letter to my mum and only spent a day with us, which had upset my mum. As it turned out, my auntie called my mum a week later. The letter had arrived late! They talked and managed to say things to each other that had been unspoken as far back as the 1940s.
This got me thinking! What if my mum's letter had arrived before my auntie had left for England. Would she have made more time to see us? Would the day have been even better than it was? Or what if they had picked up the phone to each other years before? And so I was inspired to write Slip, to encourage others not to let time slip away.
My editor sent me back the final draft and asked if she could have a copy once published, for her own sister. I also sent a proof copy of 'Slip' to my best friend, and she told me that after reading 'Slip', she called her sister and sorted out a small issue they where having. That really touch me, and I knew then that I had written a story with soul.
'Slip' Available November 2017
Blog update: Jan 2018
To those of you reading this blog because I directed you here via the back page of my book, thank you. Thank you for reading, and for wanting to find out my mothers back story.
If you enjoyed my story, it would be lovely to read your thoughts in a review.
Why I wrote Gut Feeling & why I keep writing
Dyslexia for a creative writer is a cruel disability. I carried a vocabulary in my head that did not match my spelling ability. I would find myself substituting words on paper in order to make my writing legible, unaware that this only detracted from my writing and the impact it had on the reader.
At the age of twenty, I was writing erotica poetry and also some general philosophy. Looking back, I can see the natural creative path I was taking myself on. Just like an artist, I was trying different genres and writing styles. At twenty-four, I sought help, determined to learn to spell. I found out that I also had a weak short-term memory. In short, it went in one ear and out the other! I worked on developing my memory with a therapist, which helped me go back to the basics and teach myself to spell. Towards the end of my program, my therapist asked me to write a diary to help develop my reading and writing skills. I explained that I did not like writing diaries but had written some romantic scenes. My therapist suggested building a beginning and an end to one of the scenes I had written. This was the birth of my first book, Gut Feeling.
That is my how, but what is my why?
My why has an element of passion and defiance. A teacher told my parents that I wouldn't amount to much, and I believed that teacher for a long time. Once I left school thankfully I listened to my parents positive encouragement's and thrived in the believe that I could do anything I put my mind to. Why did that teacher get the right to prophesize my future?
When I write I think about what I have achieved, I remember that I taught myself to, and the commitment it took. My why is, why not!
What is your why?
Being a dyslexic in the world of creative writing will always leave you venerable to harsh criticism. My advice to dyslexic writers is this: never be embarrassed of your abilities, only proud of them. And never give up, keep teaching yourself and learning.
You are amazing.
Who in their right mind would put me on the radio?
Someone who hasn't met me, clearly! namely Tom Cannon from #CroydonRadio
However, I behaved myself and was quit professional about the whole thing. We had a nice lighthearted chat about my books, my writing process, and growing up with dyslexia and I didn't swear once. My mum did call to tell me that I said 'Oh God' a few times. I don't remember, but i'll take that over the f-word on local radio. Sorry mum x
If you missed the show, don't worry I found their a pod cast :) yay! click the link below and you can listen to me being very professional and not embarrassing my friends and family like I normally do!
The show is two hours, so to hear my interview simply fast forward to the last 25minutes of the show and there I am :) enjoy x
Life is what you make it....
I left school with the reading age of a elementary school child. I decided to take fate into my own hands and taught myself to read with the aid of a dyslexia specialist and lots of self-help school books, I did this at a ripe age of twenty-five. Part of my process was to practice writing. This is where my book 'Gut Feeling' was born. I originally published my first book 'Gut Feeling' in 2009 for my own self-accomplishment and for friends and family to read.
I want to encourage people with dyslexia to write their stories, but, to the best standard possible. So, I decided to un-publish 'Gut Feeling' because it was not a good representation of my current writing ability. My younger self had also not worked with an editor on the basics!
There are a few original copies being sold on amazon in paper back.
If you would like to read a copy of the original 'Gut Feeling' I would be happy to email you a free ebook copy for your private use.
If not, and you buy the version on Amazon today--I'm sure your enjoy it more haha.
Life is what you make it.....
It is very hard to describe to a non-dyslexic how I see the written word, however I think I hit the nail on the head today.
My husband and I were travelling, south on the M25. I was staring at the vehicles as they drove passed, and one read FS Contact. At first glance I read FS Connect, then I focused my thoughts and read the word correctly. I set about trying to explain to my husband, that I automatically guessed the word from my memory bank, but once I told myself to actually read the word I decoded it, and read the word correctly. My husband found this very interesting.
I sat staring at other vehicles for a while and realized I was still not automatically, registering a lot of the words written on them. I pointed to one lorry with lots of writing on the back. I did not register any of what it said until I told myself to read it, and then I saw the word 'Transport'. I thought, this is a perfect example, and so I pointed the lorry out to my husband.
I said "Do you see that grey lorry to the left of us?'
He said, "Yes."
I said, "I was staring at the back of that lorry but did not read the writing. It's as if it is written in a foreign language." I took a second look and focused my thoughts to read the words and then said, "Oh wait it is a foreign language." We both laughed a lot at this.
The only English word on the van was Transport! And it wasn't until I told my self to read that I decoded the other words and realized I could not decode them. Until that point it was all a foreign language to me, even the english word.
Maybe if I had decoded the word POLAND it would have helped. But the fact that worlds are written in uppercase is another issue. It adds to the effort needed to decode the letters into words.
So for me looking at the English language is sometimes like you looking at a foreign language. I have to focus my thoughts to decode the letters into words. But until that point it is all foreign to me.
So if you can now imaging what it is like for a child seeing words in this way, you may find you have a bit more patience with them.
It is tiresome for any adult to constantly focus your self on a task. Can you imagine what its like for a child to have to do this with a task that you, (a non dyslexic) finds relatively effortless, and then they have other distractions going on around them. Its no wonder dyslexic children get easily distracted. But shouting at them or losing patients with them will NEVER solve the issue. They just need a lot more of your time and effort to learn and store words. I left school with such a small amount of words in my memory bank this now makes decoding the English langue as an adult harder for me.
I hope this helps you understand a little more about dyslexia.
As a young girl I remember my mum reading to me “The Famous Five” by Enid Blyton. As I listened to my mum read, her words would capture my entire imagination as if I was one of the characters in the book. My love for books grew with each story my mum read to me, along with a quiet desire to be able to read the words for myself. My first attempt at writing a story was age ten. I somehow managed to scribble a few pages into one of my brother’s old school exercise books, before giving up frustrated that I could not spell the words I had in my head. It was a horror story! I stayed struggling with this genre throughout my childhood and into my teens. A few short stories or scenes from my imagination made their way onto paper if they were lucky. At this point I had no idea that I had a talent that needed to be nurtured. I used to think, how could someone who can’t spell be a writer? So I never told the adults in my life how I felt about reading and writing so I put down my pen. I would not write again until I was about thirteen where the horror genre continued along with a fantasy.
I fell into my first real job at seventeen within the dental industry. I studied to pass my dental nurse qualification. As an adult I would still write short stories and scenes from my imagination however my genre was not horror or fantasy but erotica and romance. I managed to struggle though every page of Rider’s by Jilly Cooper and had fallen in love with the Mills & Boon section at Waterstones in Oxford Street. I would show my writing to the other nurses who thought it was outrageous but loved everything I wrote. This gave me the confidence to keep writing. At aged twenty I was writing erotica poetry and also some general philosophy. Looking back I can see the natural creative path I was taking myself on. Just like an artist I was trying different genres and writing styles.
Dyslexia for a creative writer is a cruel disability. I carried a vocabulary in my head that did not match my spelling ability. Spell check and computers where not around when I was younger, so I would find myself substituting words on paper in order to make my writing legible, unaware that this only detracted from my writing and the impact it had on the reader. Aged twenty-four I sought help, determined to learn to spell, I found out that I had a weak short-term memory. In short, it went in one ear and out the other! So now all I needed to do was get the information to go in one ear and stay there. I worked on developing my memory with a therapist called Margaret Chawke, which helped me go back to basics and teach myself to spell. Towards the end of my program Margaret asked me to write a diary to help develop my reading and writing skills. I explained that I did not like writing diaries but I did write erotic and romantic scenarios. Margaret suggested building a beginning and an end to one of my erotic or romantic scenarios. This was the birth of my first book Gut Feeling
Hello, my name is Victoria I am an author. I would like to share with you my opinion & experiences and I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions.