Will Once
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I am Will Once and I play with words.

My love of reading started at a very early age. My mother taught me to read by sticking labels to things in the house – the door, the oven, the sofa, the chair. She gave me a matchbox with the same labels. I would play a game by matching the labels in my matchbox with the labels around the house. I swear she would have stuck a label on the cat if she could have found a way to make it stick.

Then I would string together the labels to make trains. Well, that’s what I called them. Anyone else would call them sentences. I would need to linking words like “and” and “the”. My mother would write those out for me. Then a few verbs, long before I knew they were called verbs. My word trains grew longer and longer.

When my matchbox was full to overflowing, she swapped it for a shoe box. We carried on adding words and building word trains.

Next came books. Other people’s word trains. Other people’s stories. I devoured any and every book I could find. A childhood love of libraries grew into a degree in English Language and Literature. Anything from Chaucer and Shakespeare to Terry Pratchett and Iain (M) Banks.

Other people’s stories were all very well, but as each book ended I wanted to know more. What happened to the characters after “The End”? Did they really live happily ever after? After all they have been through – really?

So I started to write my own short stories, poems and then novels. I wrote my first novel when I was 16, hammering out the words on a mechanical typewriter. It was awful but at the time I thought it was the bee’s knees and the dog’s doodahs. My second novel when I was 18 was marginally less awful. Perhaps. There was a third novel in my twenties. That wasn’t much good either.

For twenty years I stopped writing and did some other stuff. Desk jobs, a couple of marriages, a wonderful wife and a marvellous son.

In 2012 I started writing again. I don’t know why. It just seemed to be an itch that needed scratching. Maybe I was hankering after that childhood matchbox of words.

Why not say hello? I would love to hear from you:


My privacy (and decency) policy

1.            I want to be one of the good guys. Honesty and integrity matter to me. Without honour, I might as well give up and do something else.

2.            The only information I hold about people is a list of emails where people have asked to be on my mailing list. This list also holds first names and second names, but only where people have chosen to give them to me.

3.            This mailing list is only for sending people emails about my writing. I will not use it for any other purpose. I will not give the list to anyone else.

4.            People on the list can unsubscribe at any time by hitting the “unsubscribe” button at the bottom of each email. I won’t chase them or ask them why they want to go. Goodbye is supposed to mean goodbye.

5.            The mailing list is managed by Mailchimp and protected by a secure password.

6.            At any time you can ask me anything you like about my privacy policy.

7.            If the mailing list is not needed at some point in the future, I will delete it.

8.            I firmly believe that the reader is King. Or Queen. I like to talk to my readers but I won’t ever pester a reader or quibble about a poor review. If you don’t like it, you don’t like it. You have every right to say so.

9.            The companies who manage my website and social media presence (including Facebook and Amazon) may use cookies and other technical stuff, but I don’t.

10.          If in doubt refer to point 1.