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Here's a helping hand for authors

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Here you have found the website for authors and writers.

You see, I am convinced that YOU and most people can write a book. You too can become an author.

After all, you have all your own special experiences and your unique story to tell. But you may not appreciate it. I did not truly acknowledge that fact until I had written, redrafted and fine-tuned my latest book.

My background is as an expert journalist, editor, proofreader – and previously an author of sports books. Now I’m an author again, and I have learned so much in writing my new book “Feel it as a Man: a fool’s guide to relationships”.

This is NOT my first book. As a former Sports Editor of The Times newspaper I have written books on sport. But this is the first book which has come from my heart and from personal experience, as well as from my head. Having learnt some invaluable tips and tricks for authors in writing my new book, I’m ready to share with you what I have discovered in the process. I will also share with you what I have learned about feelings and emotions from a man’s point of view.

You too can write your book

At a recent talk about emotions I gave to a networking group I invited the attendees to work together and discuss what books they might write. At first they were shy and bashful – “I couldn’t possibly write a book”, many of them said at the start. But, after a short conversation, they soon came up with topics and titles.

And I want to help you to achieve your potential as an author on a topic of your choice. This website is your starter for 10 based on working notes and knowledge from my latest book, “Feel it as a Man: a fool’s guide to relationships”.

As I have said, from my experiences I provide you with new paid-for courses and one- to-one help as an author. And on this website you will also find articles, blogs and videos to get you started.

So… let’s connect and create your next new book together.

Fresh focus on men's feelings

The Author - A working life in writing

Nick Keith

Nick Keith

My whole career has involved writing and included authorship. I have worked as a writer, editor, publisher, marketer, and author. Having read Modern History at Oxford University, I trained as a journalist, and then worked for The Times for 10 years, including 3 as Sports Editor.

Since then I have founded and run two contract publishing companies: one producing books for publishers; the other producing magazines and newsletters for companies to give to their clients or staff.

In that time I wrote sports books about Golf (‘The Sportsviewers Guide to Golf’ and ‘Golf Clinic’); Football (A Guide to the 1982 World Cup); and the Olympic Games, guide books for 1984 and 1988. I edited the official biography of Olympic champion ice skaters Torvill and Dean by John Hennessy.

In 2018 I wrote my first personal book about my own experiences, feelings and observations. This is “Feel it as a Man: a fool’s guide to relationships”. At the same time I edited two business books for Paquita Lamacraft, of the Archer Business Group.

She said: “I cannot rate Nick Keith’s editing and authorship services highly enough, and in this sphere I am a critical user. I’d use no one else now I have discovered Nick, and recommend others to see for themselves what good editing can do for your book. Nick also checked and suggested logical corrections to my books – thank goodness. I was delighted with the results of working with Nick Keith.”

My past publishing clients have included David and Charles, Allen & Unwin, and Hamlyn. Among my corporate customers were 3M, Eastern Electricity, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, Knight Frank, and Sky Sports. While continuing my work as an editor In this century, I have also been the communications director of a marketing company, retrained as a TEFL teacher, and taught English to Turkish, Italian and French business people.

Today I am Nick Keith FRSA, one of the 29,000 Fellows of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (which aims to “enrich society through ideas and action”). I am also active in education: as a mentor at Barton Peveril Sixth Form College, Eastleigh, to students who aspire to get into Oxbridge; and as a volunteer Enterprise Adviser in the Careers and Enterprise Company helping secondary school students find a clear path to work. I have three sons, a daughter, and three granddaughters, and I live in Winchester.

The Theme

Feel it as a man book covers

Are you a man who struggles to express his feelings?

Do you, or does someone you know, find it hard to communicate openly and listen actively?

Are your relationships fraught with failures and misunderstandings?

My ground-breaking new book, “Feel it as a Man: a fool’s guide to relationships”, is for you. Here you will find answers to questions and potential solutions to some lifelong emotional problems. I speak from personal experience and with Guidance from experts. I am the Shakespearean ‘fool’ who acts as “a commentator on events and is fearless in telling the truth”. [RSC programme notes].

The Book - Inspirations and influences

Taj Mahal

The inspiration for my book, “Feel it as a Man: a fool’s guide to relationships”, happened at the Taj Mahal in October 2017. A tour of Rajasthan and southern India took me inevitably to the Taj, and I had moderated my expectations in advance for fear of disappointment after hearing so much about it.

In fact I was transcended by the experience of seeing the Taj Mahal at dawn. After the sun rose, I sat on as bench transfixed, some way off from this magnificent memorial by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan to his favourite wife Mumtaz Mahal. I considered my own memories, and decided to put on paper the story of my life – its successes and failures, joys and sadnesses, especially in relationships – leavened by the views of experts.

The year 2017 was a momentous one for me, which saw this trip to India and then Australia, a big birthday in March with a party in June. Also there was separation from my second wife of 30 years, the sale of our house in West Sussex, a move to rented accommodation in Winchester, and divorce, which became absolute in January 2018. That crowded year brought many feelings and thoughts to the surface. The time to think during my travels.

Nick_keith_author

This Much I Know

People have known me more as a thoughtful than an obviously emotional man, but that could be applied to many men of my post-war generation, the so called ‘baby boomers’. We grew up at a time when boys were told to be brave – ‘big boys don’t cry’, you mustn’t be a sissy’ and all that.

So I learnt to be ‘strong’ which meant that I forgot how to find and express my feelings. I am a fan of the weekly column ‘This Much I Know’ in the Sunday magazine of The Observer when celebrities discuss events which have impacted on them. The point is that each event is personal and the readers take from it what they choose.

The Process - Experiences and knowledge

In the process of writing this book I have come across articles, books, films, videos, and theatre which have resonated with my experience. These have given me hope that this book would help me discover stuff about myself which I had denied, buried or ignored – and maybe, just maybe, help others. However, I would stress that my personal experiences may not necessarily have revealed any great truths about mankind. That’s for readers to reckon out for themselves.

The Title - Shakespeare’s shadow

Fools Hat

This is deliberately taken from ‘Macbeth’, one of Shakespeare’s most bloody and misogynistic plays, exploring the gender differences and upending some of the assumptions about the roles of men and women.

In ‘Macbeth’, the gender roles of men and women are confused. Whenever the murderous usurper Macbeth and Lady Macbeth talk about manhood, violence follows. They both equate masculinity with aggression and violence, which are paramount in the play.

First, Lady Macbeth manipulates her husband by questioning his manhood, wishing that she could be “unsexed”. And Macbeth says that a woman like her should give birth only to boys. The aggression of the female characters goes against expectations of how women behave. The women who have roles as sources of violence and evil are:
a) The witches, whose prophecies help to fuel Macbeth’s ambitions and encourage his violent behaviour;
b) Lady Macbeth, who provides the wit and the will to her husband’s plotting.

Her behaviour suggests that women can be just as cruelly vindictive as men – a view which was borne out by the experiences of my father in the Second World War (related in the book). Lady Macbeth deceives men to achieve her objectives – rather than acting violently herself – and in the end she kills herself.

Towards the end of the play, masculinity is redefined. Malcolm encourages Macduff to take the news of the murders of his wife and child in “manly” fashion – by having his revenge on Macbeth. But Macduff suggests this is a false understanding of masculinity.

Malcolm: “Dispute it like a man.”
Macduff: “I shall do so. But I must also feel it as a man” (Macbeth Act 4 scene 3).

Feelings can be bad as well as good. But I have learned that we must always be aware of them, and dwell on them for a while, before letting them go and not allowing them to control us. That has been, and remains, one of my major challenges.

So I urge people, especially men, to stay open to feelings and emotions, and the challenges described in ‘Feel it as a Man’.

Dispatches

Testimonials

Not sure what to expect, I embarked on this out of curiosity. It was worth it. The writing is incisive and balanced and I recommend it to anyone who wants to know how one man learnt the hard way, and perhaps take a few lessons for themselves.

Constant Reader

This is a great book. You get to know the author as a person, but with some great learning points and quotes thrown in as well. It is a cross between autobiography and self-help, as well as a fascinating read. Highly recommended.

JMA

I cannot rate Nick Keith’s editorial and authorship services highly enough, and in this sphere I am a critical user. I'd use no one else now I have discovered Nick, and recommend others to see for themselves what good editing and guidance can do for you as an author. Nick also checked and suggested logical corrections to continuity errors and mixed metaphors in my work - thank goodness. I was delighted with the results of my engagement of Nick Keith as my Editor.

PAQUITA LAMACRAFT | Archer Business Group, London

Open and honest, with many points that the reader can learn from. Really helps explain the mystery of why men sometimes find it difficult to communicate.

JONNY ANDREWS | Authorised Distributor, Utility Warehouse

An honest exploration of feelings and learning emerging from the frontline of life experience. Nick’s message is that it’s never too late to bring more emotional richness to your life.

FELICITY DWYER | Career Coach

The book is a very good read and well researched.

TOM BESLY | Landscape Gardener

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