However, whilst I was waiting for my friend to appear I was accosted by one of those marketing people. Unable to make any excuse and flee, because this was the spot where I had agreed to meet my friend, I cringed and prayed that it wouldn't be too painful an experience.
Fortunately, the young girl and boy (18 is very young by my standards today!), were canvassing for a charity that I regularly donate to. Huge sigh of relief when the topic shifted onto books. Well, we were standing outside WH Smiths! I was also wearing a tee shirt bearing the "Fangtasia" logo. For all of you who are uninitiated into the world of vamps, or who have been living on another planet these past few years, like the young girl had), Fangtasia is the name of the Vampire bar owned by Eric Northman in the "True Blood" series.
Well, the young boy told me that he had written a book, it was better than all those in Smiths (to which I sighed and pulled a downy face at his pomposity, whilst slightly admiring his confidence), and then began to inform me that he didn't know how to get published.
I refrained from stating the obvious, "So, you obviously take it seriously then!", and proceeded to launch into a mini lecture explaining the hows and how nots of submitting to mainstream publishers. I then informed him that self publishing was fast becoming the most popular route these days. Just look at "Fifty Shades". Whether you hate it or not, it certainly highlights how self publishing can catapult you to the pinnacle of success.
Of course the ultimate question, and the one that I put to you now, is a simple one:
Why do you write?
Some (the delusional ones I like to call them), do so because they dream of pots of gold and stardom. These remind me of those hopefuls on the reality show auditions who clearly fail to realise that they do not have any true talent and then deride the experts when told this, and all because they are blinded by the stars and lights.
To me, the true writer is one who writes because he/she has to. I'm not knocking monetary success. It would be lovely to earn a substantial salary through doing something that I love. However, to me, writing is something that is in your blood. You don't just do it. You live it.
When people learn that I am a writer, they invariably ask me one question first: "Are you rich?"
There are many replies, but I tell them the truth, whilst refraining from informing them that there was a time in society when discussing money was deemed as being simply vulgar.
No, I don't earn mega bucks. I write because I have to. I want to. I have never truly wanted to do anything else. Whether you are published or not, the fact that you put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard, voice to mic, means that YOU are a writer.
And the money? Hell, the money would be great but, ultimately, the fact that I can write and others can read and, hopefully, enjoy my work means that I am rich enough...