I’m not remotely into Friends, but that struck me as a fairly apt title for my very first blog post.
I’m Vijay Hare, as I’m sure you know. It’s in fairly big letters on this site… and if I’m being honest, at this point the only people reading this are people I know personally.
I only really need to do one blog post as part of setting up the website, and it was fairly tempting to just fill in a few lines and hit Publish – but I’m hoping to use this blog quite a bit in the future, so start as you mean to go on, I guess.
I know I’ve already got a few lines in the ‘About Me’ page on the website, but I figured maybe talking a little bit more about me was in order.
Y’know, for the visitors who don’t actually know me.
I’ve always been into writing since I was really, really young – we’re talking, 4 or 5 young – and although I’ve worked professionally in a good few jobs that have nothing really to do with writing, it’s always been an ambition I’ve had simmering on the backburner.
The first really serious project I ever did was in 2012, during the Easter break when I was revising for my GCSEs. it was 100,000 words of the most cringy, pretentious, overwrought, shoddily-written and completely unoriginal science fiction you ever did see, and of course, like any self-respecting 15 year old who’d just got into writing, I thought it was the best thing since sliced bread.
Suffice to say, it still gathers dust in my OneDrive to this day, and I will never, ever, ever let a living soul read it who didn’t see it at the time.
Time passed, I went to Warwick University, then I started working long hours in London. Having to churn a lot of read non-fiction into academic essays on a regular basis can really kill your drive to read, as well as to write, but I found that after I graduated I was able to pick up reading for pleasure once again.
Which leads me to 2018, when a dodgy knee temporarily stopped me working for a few months, and I was laid up at home with not much to do and an awful lot of free time on my hands.
It was during that winter I knocked out my second real attempt at writing – another 100,000 words but historical fiction this time, instead of sci-fi. I studied Classics at University (having been interested in it all through school) and I found the Ancient world to be really great fodder for telling stories, so novel #2 was an almighty romp through Ancient Athens, an intrigue plot about their great Peloponnesian War with Sparta, and was something I could honestly be proud of.
But still not good enough, sadly.
Still, though, I learnt a lot of lessons from doing it, about planning, research and editing (or more accurately, how not to do any of those things), and I put all that painfully-acquired wisdom to one side as I went back to work.
And then a year or so later, this little bugger showed up.
I’m in the At Risk category for COVID-19, so I had to lockdown a good while longer than everyone else, as well as follow those painfully-spartan rules about shielding long after other people got to go out into the world again. On top of that, for the last year or so I’ve had a couple of other health issues on the go which have also, sadly, restricted my ability to get out and about as well as work, so since the big ‘Rona dropped I’ve once again had a lot more time to myself at home…
Which leads me to here and now!
After a month of planning and almost 10 months of writing, my historical fiction novel, Legion That Was, is nearing the end of its editorial revisions. It’s probably been my most enjoyable – if intensely difficult – project to do, although I feel like I’ve learned a lot from my (many) other less successful works.
It will almost certainly be self-published on KDP, and will be available to buy later this year, both in paperback and eBook formats. When that happens, details on how to buy it will be posted in the relevant pages on this website.
I’m not going to talk too much about the novel right now, as I’m planning to reveal little tidbits here and there on my various social media in the time running up to its release… but I’ll say a couple of things about it now.
It is set in Ancient Rome (AD 12, to be precise), and it is going to be the first of a (hopefully quite long) series.
The main character’s name is Gaius Sertor Orbus, and, much like the chap in the picture above, he spends an awful lot of time glaring balefully at the people and places around him.
Here endeth this rambling, self-indulgent opening blog post. I’m hoping to blog a little more when the site is fully up and running, and once that starts, I can post a fair bit more content on my other socials too.
And on that philosophical note… adios.