About

When I was 17 years old Mrs Holder, my school’s careers adviser, told me not to study English Literature at university because what would I actually do with such a degree? “Okay,” I thought, “I won’t apply to study my favourite subject. What else might I want to do?” I ended up spending three years on Ancient History and Egyptology, which is probably all you need to know about my flair for logical thinking.

After 17 years of being a civil servant, a novel that saw the light of day in France and Germany,Β and an awful lot of prevarication, I’ve now given up the day job to try my hand at writing full-time – at least until the money runs out.

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49 thoughts on “About

    1. yakinamac Post author

      Thanks Helen. One thing I’ve definitely learned in the last couple of months is that I really don’t need to go into an office every day to keep myself occupied. So now, when I get that lottery win/six figure publishing deal (hmm – wonder which is most likely?) I know not to worry about handing in my notice! πŸ˜‰

      Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      Thank you! Of course, it’s quite possible that she might have been right all along, but it’s proving a lot of fun to hope she wasn’t. (Also really enjoyed taking a look around your blog – I loved “Cold Calling” and plan to try out Muriel’s technique!)

      Reply
  1. navigator1965

    Well done, both on the oxymoron speechless quip and pursuing the book. I’ve just sent my 1st manuscript (non fiction) to my self-publisher for editing. Might get it out before Christmas.

    This might be of interest: http://www.fourhourworkweek.com/blog/2013/04/04/how-to-make-1000000-selling-e-books-tactics-and-case-studies/ .

    You might also find the thegreatcourses.com of interest. I am enjoying the course on writing great sentences. They often have sales up to 70% off.

    Good luck!

    Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      Thank you! Just got some more feedback from friends on my first draft today – all very helpful and insightful, but brought home there’s still a way to go before I’m at the stage of waiting for my rejection letters…

      Really love your blog – such beautiful thoughts and imagery. Genuinely inspirational.

      Reply
  2. navigator1965

    yakinamac,

    Try not to laugh. My girlfriend looked at me like I was a Special Olympian when I mentioned a comment from yak-in-a-mac. She basically told me I was a twit, and that it likely stood for a name like Yakina MacSomething.

    I thought it might have been from a college student getting ill on his Apple laptop.

    Not always this dense. Promise.

    Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      No, no – you were right! I’m not sure where the name came from – it just sort of announced itself one day several years ago when I was looking for a log-in name for an email account. The only thing I can think of is that it wasn’t that long after I’d come back from a brief period living in Nepal, so perhaps I had yaks on my mind?!

      Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      That’s really kind of you – thank you! And enjoying your blog too – hope to hear more about your fab computer teacher soon…

      Reply
  3. Prasad

    Just happened to run into your blog. You have got a beautiful space running here. Loved your write-ups. Its very subtle . I guess I will be hanging around here a lot. πŸ™‚ Happy blogging.

    Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      No indeed. The only time my degree ever came in handy was when someone had left a gold ring in the kitchen at work. It had hieroglyphics on it, and I was able to tell the person who’d found it and was trying to identify the owner that it belonged to someone called Karen. They were pretty impressed actually – almost made those three years of studying worthwhile..!

      Reply
  4. w6bky

    I’ve enjoyed browsing through your blog.
    Thanks for visiting my blog and “liking” some of the posts you found there.
    Best of luck with your first novel – perhaps it will be the first of many. I made my living as a writer for several years (technical writing, as opposed to fiction). Actually, what I did, mostly, was re-writing; don’t recall ever creating a piece that was ready for prime time on the first try.

    Reply
  5. jackiemallon

    Oh it’s good to meet you! My English teacher told me to go on to study English Lit at uni and I flounced off to art college instead. This led me to a career in fashion, which then inspired my first novel, just published. So there. Bottom line: we know better than our teachers. Either that or we’re flukey gits πŸ™‚ So carry on with that novel, girl!

    Reply
  6. jackiemallon

    Thank you. Feel free to ask if I can give any advice but from the quality of the writing on your blog, you’re well on your way yourself! Good luck!

    Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      Thanks – the link sounds good and I’ll take a look (exercising all will power to stop myself from doing it now because I MUST work on my re-write – just as soon as I finish up here…).

      In fairness, I can’t really blame Mrs Holder – if I’d actually listened to what she’d said I’d have done a vocational course instead of Egyptology. Still, always nice to have someone else to point to as influencing your own indecision/ general perversity!

      Reply
  7. Garrsen

    I am in a similar situation myself: I follwed advice of others who said things like, “It’s great you want to be a writer. What will you do for a living?” and I got half way through an electrical engineering degree before I realized my department advisor was right – I didn’t have the passion to truly succeed in that field.
    The first thing I learned how to do when learning to drive was how to get out of a fish tail. I grew up driving on and around black ice. It is scary, uncertain and risky, just like the leap of faith you’re currently taking.
    Stay true to yourself! And keep a firm grip on the wheel. I have a feeling you’ll get to your destination.

    Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      Thank you – wise words! I wish you every success with your writing. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and to leave a comment. πŸ™‚

      Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      Thank you! As long as it doesn’t remind you of the Scottish Play… In two months’ time I may well be weeping over my fatal flaw as I return to the office!

      Reply
  8. sue marquis bishop

    You have a nice easy flair for humor. Are you writing comedy? Stay the course whatever yor heart says to do. Thanks for visiting my new blog. Am in a second or third career. Sue

    Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      Thanks Sue. The book is actually a thriller, though one of the characters is quite funny (I think).

      I really enjoyed your blog. Finding it very inspirational to hear about people who’ve had the courage to pursue different avenues in their lives.

      Reply
  9. sandradan1

    I think I had the same careers advisor: I said I wanted to be a journalist but she said no-one ever achieves that. Which of course was like a red rag to a bull. I did read English at university, and remain pleased every day that I did. Oh and I was a journalist for 30+ years and am now writing my second novel. Have you found my writing blog at http://www.sandradanby.com/
    Thanks for liking my Spanish blog! SD

    Reply
    1. yakinamac Post author

      Well done you on responding far more effectively to your careers adviser than I managed to! I hadn’t found your writing blog – but I have now and will be adding it to my “follow” list.

      Reply

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