Guest Writer Spot

I am over at Esther Chilton’s lovely blog with a guest post about how I transitioned from being non-fiction writer to a fiction writer. Thank you so much Esther for hosting me.

This week’s Guest Writer is the very talented Robbie Cheadle. As you’ll see from her biography, she’s a very versatile writer:

Robbie, short for Roberta, is an author with six published children’s picture books in the Sir Chocolate books series for children aged 2 to 9 years old (co-authored with her son, Michael Cheadle), one published middle grade book in the Silly Willy series and one published preteen/young adult fictionalised biography about her mother’s life as a young girl growing up in an English town in Suffolk during World War II called While the Bombs Fell (co-authored with her mother, Elsie Hancy Eaton). All of Robbie’s children’s book are written under Robbie Cheadle and are published by TSL Publications.

Robbie has recently branched into adult horror and supernatural writing and, in order to clearly differential her children’s books from her adult writing, these will be published under Roberta Eaton Cheadle. Robbie has two short stories in the horror/supernatural genre included in Dark Visions, a collection of 34 short stories by 27 different authors and edited by award winning author, Dan Alatorre. These short stories are published under Robbie Cheadle.

Robbie has also recently published a poetry collection, Open a new door, together with fellow South African poet, Kim Blades.


Transitioning from a non-fiction to a fiction writer


In 2014, I wrote my first non-fiction publication called Listing in Africa which was sponsored by the firm where I worked. Investment into Africa was topical at the time and the document was well received with more than 29 on-line and physical newspapers featuring a story on my document. I had my first television and radio interviews and that, combined with the pleasure I had derived from doing all the research that went into the book, made the whole exercise seems hugely fulfilling and exciting.

Simultaneously with my plunged into the world of publication writing, I also started exercising my interest in writing poetry. This interest had lain dormant since I was 19 years old and made the decision to study towards becoming a chartered accountant. My early poems were triggered by the funny things my sons and their cousins did which, somehow, converted themselves into rhyming verse in my mind and all I had to do was write the poems down. The children and I had a lot of giggles over those poems.

Over the next few years I wrote a number of other publications, namely, Listing in Africa: Extractive Industries in 2015, What Influences Foreign Direct Investment into Africa and The African Debt Market, both in 2016, and my personal triumph, Africa In A Changing Global Environment in 2017.  This last publication, which focused on Africa’s fourth industrial revolution readiness in comparison to its major competitors, did extremely well and I participated in a few successful television interviews. The document was also featured by some noteworthy newspapers and economics institutions.

In 2016, I published my first fiction middle grade children’s book, Silly Willy Goes to Cape Town. It is a fun tale about two siblings and their interactions and adventures while on holiday in the beautiful city of Cape Town aimed at early readers. This was my first attempt at writing a longer fiction book and when I received feedback on this book, I realized that there were differences between writing non-fiction and fiction which I would need to consider and work on if I wanted to transition into a better writer of fiction. The feedback was useful, but not so discouraging or critical that I throw my writer’s pen down in despair.

via Guest Writer Spot


18 thoughts on “Guest Writer Spot

    1. I am pleased you enjoyed this interview, Michael. Transitioning from non-fiction to fiction is interesting. You are a journalist so you are used to writing factual stories too. It is a change to open your mind up to descriptive writing and fantasy. Hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Evolution is change, and change is the only constant.
    I evolved from a poet to a flash fiction writer. While I think some of what I have written could fall under novella. I believe that a full novel will be something that perhaps would not be as fun for me as it is for others.

    Maybe ‘Cosy mysteries (fiction)’ might be a good expansion for me as they are short books 😉

    Continued success in all your writing adventures 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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