Is writing really just about writing?

My 500 word January writing challenge went well until I hit the last week and our academic publisher sent us (myself, Maggie Robson and Ann Beynon) the review of a draft and the deadline for completing the Handbook for Counselling Children and Young People. However, I thought, wrongly as it turned out, that this would provide the impetus and motivation for the last week of the 500 words a day challenge.
This brings me to the title of this post, Is writing really just about writing? Well…sometimes it is and I can sit and write word after word, sentence, paragraph and page. You writers out there will recognise this, the ‘pen’ flows with words and ideas and you just can’t stop. Alternatively, you sit at the desk and agonise over every single word, phrases such as ‘like pulling back teeth’ spring to mind.
However, writing for the Handbook deadline did not involve much actual writing at this stage. It involved liaising with authors, re-structuring chapters, fiddling about with bits of prose and adding links to theory and practice and dialoguing with our publisher. This did not add anything to my 500 word challenge, it stopped me from reaching my goal.
Is this writing? Is writing as narrow as putting words onto the page?
What do you think? Post a comment to let me know your thoughts on this.

Our book: Handbook for Counselling Children and Young People, will be published in November this year by Sage Publishers, Edited by Sue Pattison, Maggie Robson, and Ann Beynon.

See link below for pre-ordering:

My 500 words Challenge

This is a brilliant challenge and much better than making New Year resolutions that never seem to work out. By taking this challenge to write 500 words a day, every day, for the whole of January (at least), I have managed to produce my second Writer’s Newsletter and complete The first chapter of my book, Under Her Skin.
It’s a fabulous challenge, check it out on this link:

Writer Newsletter 2

I hope you enjoyed the first newsletter. I’ve had some very positive feedback from several readers regarding introducing my novel ‘Under Her Skin’, with comments such as “send me Chapter One now”.

In my first Newsletter I introduced Kate, a young psychologist who becomes the target of a cold-blooded psychopath. Escape the cold, dark, damp English January and curl up
on the sofa with a glass of whatever hits the spot for you (at this time of year a mellow Merlot or Malbec does it for me), kick off your shoes and read Chapter One: Darkness and Deceit. In this chapter you will meet for the first time several characters, the major ones are Kate, forensic psychologist and James, smooth, rich, cold-blooded psychopath. Other characters include Nadia, abused prostitute and whistle blower; Anton, James’ London manservant and chauffeur; Robert, his Scottish butler; Morag, his Scottish housekeeper; and Tom his Scottish chauffeur and gamekeeper.

Let me know what you think of the chapter, the characters and what the chapter/characters  did for you, share with me your thoughts, feelings and emotions. I’m working on Chapter Two, which should be ready by February and could benefit from your inout. 

Check out my blog, where I will also be posting material from the Newsletter and other stuff. You can post your responses, be part of a community of strong women and contribute to the Tribal discussions. Also Tweet if you want to.

All the best,



Twitter: @pattisonwriter

Writer Newsletter 1

I have emailed my first Writer Newsletter to my supportive writing community. This felt so good and its something really concrete.
My writing is for and about strong women who dealing with, or have overcome adversity in their lives. Some would say that adversity is a natural part of all women’s lives. I agree.

“Being a woman is hard work”
        Maya Angelou

That is not to say that men don’t have challenges to overcome, they do. This Newsletter is also for all the men who support the women in their lives, wives, girlfriends, lovers, sisters, mothers, friends. You are welcome to join our Tribe.

What do I mean by Tribe?

A tribe is a group of individuals who are joined together by common ideas and form a community. In this case the community is strong women and supportive men, and the ideas are open to discussion, but will centre on overcoming challenge and adversity and supporting each other’s development.

My first novel is a psychological thriller, written around a central character or protagonist, Kate; a young psychologist who becomes the target of a cold-blooded psychopath. Her main drive is to rid society of dangerous men such as James McCain and in doing so she is forced to confront her own internal demons and fight to lay them to rest.
The working title is : Under Her Skin.

Alongside this novel, I’m gathering research for a different type of book about the psychology of strong women, their narratives and what gives meaning to their lives. A possible title is : Live Strong, Live Happy and it will contain a solid self-help core.

You can post your responses here, or email me, and be part of a community of strong women and contribute to the Tribal discussions. Also Tweet if you want to.



Twitter: @pattisonwriter