There’s nothing new Under the Pen

John Steinberg© 2023

I’d been writing for the best part of the last fifteen years with little success, so trying remaining motivated was no easy task. 

Not for the first time, it occurred to me that there had to be easier ways of making a living. 

That option was open to me, since I had previously had a commercial career- on which, unfortunately, I made as little impact as the literary pursuits that took its place. The major difference this time around was the realisation that I wasn’t really cut out for anything other than writing.

This got me thinking about a new book. The temptation was to make it a humorous tale based on my experience as an author in search of an audience. Something to which all writers could relate. So, sales were guaranteed.  

Next, I had to come up with a character as my alter ego. With a shortlist of one, Norman somehow got my vote. His name evoked a variety of ‘downtrodden’ emotions with which I immediately identified.

Starting a new project is always challenging particularly so in this case since the beginning involved a trek back through the ages researching for any precedent that may have accounted for my level of underachievement.  

Months later, entrenched in the epoch of history, it dawned on me that it was a momentous undertaking of which I’d so far only scratched the surface. Not easily disheartened, I plodded on.

Then, against the run of misfortune, something magical occurred when the same etching process revealed an entire dynasty of Normans not just with identical features but all of whom at some time had encountered resistance in securing a platform for their work. And it didn’t stop there! For instance, I discovered that the problems encountered by Ancient Norman in putting stylus to parchment were the same as those faced by his technophobe modern-day descendant, putting tentative fingers on his first computer keyboard  

That was when I knew I had an obligation to publish my findings and share them for the benefit of future generation of Normans everywhere.

In another twist of literary fate, I got the job ghost writing his magnum opus entitled The Writer’s Guide to Obscurity.