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I will one day!
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Zimmerman


Posts: 81
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #1
14-02-2011 06:28 PM

I will one day!

Have you ever thought that you would like to do something, it had niggled on your mind for years, but having no time to do it , or no means knowing how to do it, or what the cost would be.
It might be to go to see other countries, build a house, have an allotment to grow your vegetables, be in a football team.

My ambition was to write a book about Trams.

So aged seventy, having been retired for five years, with time to look into trying to set about doing it.
I had no idea how a computer worked, as I had not even seen one close up.
I called at the College and asked if I could do a course to learn how to go about making a book.
She said that if I wanted to do it, I would, that is the main thing wanting to do it.
The Principle explained that there was not an advanced class on Publishing, I would have to start at the bottom.
I took a three hour ten week taster course, sitting along side teenagers who were there just to do the hours of Community Service, I got the hang of the simple bits.

This is some ten years ago. There were only set programmes then, these were of no use to me, at least I was getting practice, I had to have my photo taken for a badge with my name and picture etc to be worn at all times. This worked in my favour as I could use the College Library and Computers at any time, buy my meals in their restaurant, and got a Car Park place.
I had to pay for the classes, but this was very cheap compared with other pop in back street places.

Was I going to pass? Then buy a computer, and the programme I needed to work at?

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nottinghillbilly


Posts: 458
Joined: Dec 2010
Post: #2
15-02-2011 12:50 AM

Its inspiring to hear things like this-when I am retired I hope I shall have the health and determination and strength to follow my dreams.
Good luck with yours!Thumbsup

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Zimmerman


Posts: 81
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #3
15-02-2011 03:57 PM

Ten weeks on I take the Test.
I had learned how to operate the computer, where to find things and bring them into my work, mostly compose Letters, Envelopes, Charts, Graphs, Menus, Templates. My classmates playing with Mickey Mouse, some of the people did want to learn.
So we had a Test, we all got a blue Certificate with our name stating we had studied this course, at The College, dated and signed by the Tutor.
I spoke to my Tutor asking if I could do an advanced course, as I wanted to write my book.
I was advised to take a one year course that would be for the whole of the Publishing of Newspapers and Magazines, prepared by Royal Society of Arts, I would have to pay the whole fee in advance, attend the whole period and sit a three hour Examination by an individual Invigilator.
So I signed up to attend the four terms as a normal student.
I now needed a Computer, I went P.C. World, I had got some idea of what I was looking for as the lady who sat next to me had got used to me asking “How do you do this or that?” We had learned on Dell Computers.
She advised me to get a Packard Bell as she had one and I could borrow some of her Programmes to use as she was doing something similar.
I bought the Packard Bell Desktop full kit, 17 in Screen, a Cam recorder, Epson colour Printer, it all added up to £1.300, that was ten years ago.
Now that I was waiting for my new course to start, I needed to get my material together to put in my book.
I thought that if I chose to find out about a small Tramway in a town about 1900, I had a town in mind, I looked for all the books on that Tramway in the local library there were none, I had even visited the National Tram Museum at Crich none listed there either. So as I belonged to a Philatelic and Postcard Society, I started to buy those nearly a hundred year old Postcards, black on white well used and dog eared.
Cant wait to get stated.

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brian


Posts: 2,002
Joined: Apr 2005
Post: #4
15-02-2011 04:29 PM

How inspirational and trams a good subject as well. You are 8 years older than me so guess I ought to put my thinking cap on.

I also went to The Tram Museum you mention in Crich , although many years ago.

Whereas there as many books about trains prior to the war not many about trams or even the good old trolley buses.
I recall my mother taking me to see a relative , in I think Wallington , from Sydenham. Part of the journey at least was by trolley bus.

Good Luck with your venture.

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derbybill


Posts: 122
Joined: Jan 2010
Post: #5
15-02-2011 05:25 PM

If you want a good starting point for local tram information, then I can recommend
South London Tramways 1933-52, by Robert J Harley, published by Middleton Press 2006,
ISBN 1 90447489 6.
I spotted this in WHS Catford, which used to have a special section on trains, trams, buses etc.

A tram that ran through Forest Hill from Victoria to Lewisham and then to the southern end of the Blackwall Tunnel, was the no. 58.
The same route (apart from the Blackwall Tunnel bit) is used by the 185 bus. Apparently it was policy to use the old tram number so that passengers could understand the new bus routes, so 58 tram became 185 bus.
Not sure about what happened to the 62, the 35 or the 66 which all went through or started at Forest Hill in 1934, according to the map in the book.

I am not a tram fan, but I remember going on a tram during the "Last Tram Week" which was in July 1952, I believe.

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Perryman


Posts: 809
Joined: Dec 2006
Post: #6
15-02-2011 05:43 PM

Did the local tram book author also write a book about Fly Fishing?

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Zimmerman


Posts: 81
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #7
15-02-2011 06:07 PM

Michael Russell, an author who had brought out a book about fly fishing in 1991 noted how much of a cult figure the fictional Hartley had become, and published it under the pseudonym J R Hartley with the title "Fly Fishing: Memories of Angling Days". A further book on the subject followed, under the same pseudonym ("J.R.Hartley Casts Again: More Memories of Angling Days").

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Zimmerman


Posts: 81
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #8
15-02-2011 06:36 PM

Here is your 58 Tram.
London Road Forrest Hill.

   

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derbybill


Posts: 122
Joined: Jan 2010
Post: #9
15-02-2011 08:49 PM

Lovely clear picture of the 58 on its way to the Blackwall Tunnel. Thanks!
I also happen to have a copy of "Round & About London by Tram, by Charles G. Harper, Vol II South of the Thames, 2nd edition.
Published by Ed. J. Burrow & Co Ltd and
"Authorized by the London County Council" (who of course ran the tram system).
Published probably late 1920's, early 30s.
Lots of adverts including those for lounge suits from 50 shillings (i.e. £2.50) from "London's Leading Tailors" in Old Street EC2.
For 1/- (one shilling) one could "ride-at-will" all day on the trams...and "see the great Metropolis in all its infinite variety and moods".
And there is a map of the All-night Cars, just like the current Night Buses, the "services that never cease".

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ryananglem


Posts: 167
Joined: Apr 2009
Post: #10
16-02-2011 11:29 AM

Although I am many years younger, and work with computers every day as my job , I also decided to write a book some years ago. It took four years, and a lot of learning (in addition to the actual writing) but I finally have it on amazon, and although its never going to reclaim the costs I incurred during the writing, it was as much as an achievement as anything I've done. Very rewarding. Good luck with your project!

If you've got any questions about the self-publishing process, I might be able to help. Drop me a PM.

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Ghis


Posts: 321
Joined: Jan 2007
Post: #11
16-02-2011 12:20 PM

Cool book Ryan.

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Zimmerman


Posts: 81
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #12
16-02-2011 01:00 PM

I feel that I have given the wrong impression about my wish was to write a book on Trams, as a writer I tend to write my messages as chapters.
To set the picture right I was writing about eleven years ago the year 2000, my onset to learning on a computer.
Now in 2011 aged Eighty I have achieved what I wanted, but I had to take a year course on Desktop Publishing RSA, then another year for my Advanced City & Guilds.
I would like to say “ Thank you for all the offers of help you have sent to me.”
When I am posting a message on the forum, I always think “ What reaction will I get,” a few posts get a person who just wants to argue, or no reply at all, it is very pleasing to get replies of interested members.
If I have not upset those who were interested in reading my progress as a novice, I could continue.

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Zimmerman


Posts: 81
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #13
17-02-2011 05:45 PM

Using my time to find out as much as possible about this Tramway was very challenging looking on my collection of Postcards, I found that no Tram was numbered over twelve, the pictures shown had similar trams as in other Towns, these were double ended drivers cabin, single deck with four windows in the passenger cabin, and each end a staircase to the upper open deck, the wheel set up were just four steel wheels, that had a lip on the inner side that fitted into the groove in the Tram Track, the power to move the tram was got from overhead electric wires collected by a Bow Collector to the drivers controls.
I discovered that the Trams started in 1903 and ended in 1917, That meant that I was looking for people who had used these trams now being the year 2000 they would have to be over ninety years old to have remembered them, ( I never found anybody ).
I needed to find where the electricity was generated for the Trams, I discovered they generated it themselves in a coal fired Steam engined powerhouse at the Tram Depot, the out put of the generators was more than needed to power the Trams so was sold to Manufacturing factories many miles away on high poles.
The Tram body was made in Brush Electrical Engineers, part of the system was made by the German Manufacturer Siemens' this was the track and the overhead electric by wires supplied on poles.
Looking again I knew where the Trams started but where did the track go to and how many stops and as it was only a single track it had to have passing places to allow the tram coming in the opposite direction to pass by, my postcards showed the trams at places I recognised so I knew where to look for any clues.
I also needed the name of the Civil Engineering Contractor who built the tramway into the roads.
Who were the staff of the tramway, how many besides the drivers and conductors?
What was the colour of the trams? My postcards show them in black on white.
Having found out all the technical details of the trams and ancient old Postcards of trams that were passable to use, I started to compose the pages but this did not amount to enough for my book.

There was only one solution as far as I could see to give more pages to make it far larger and appeal to more readers, I would write it as a Fictitious Novel of an applicant travelling two days to that town to apply as a new driver on a new Tramway, then his story until the tramway closed., and his leaving to take Tanks from the factory at Dartford to the docks to be shipped abroad for the First World War.

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Jane_D


Posts: 189
Joined: Jan 2010
Post: #14
17-02-2011 07:06 PM

Hi Ryan
I'm PM-ing you to avoid hijacking Z's thread. I was most impressed by you getting your bookon Amazon. I'm in the process of finishhing a novel myself - wonderful experience and most unlikely to recoup the cost of the time involved, in money terms! I'd like to find your novel on Amazon: could I have the details?
Thanks
J

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Jane_D


Posts: 189
Joined: Jan 2010
Post: #15
17-02-2011 10:46 PM

Sorry, I thought I'd hit private message there. My attempt not to hijack has failed, sorry Zimmerman!

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Ghis


Posts: 321
Joined: Jan 2007
Post: #16
18-02-2011 10:15 AM

Maybe we could have a separate thread for writing and publishing? I am sure lots of us would be interested. I have been looking into local writers group and always keep an eye on the industry.

Ryan's book is here:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Its-Not-Destinat...529&sr=8-1

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Perryman


Posts: 809
Joined: Dec 2006
Post: #17
18-02-2011 11:30 AM

Quote:
I discovered they generated in a coal fired Steam engined powerhouse at the Tram Depot


Was this tram depot in Waldram Place?

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ryananglem


Posts: 167
Joined: Apr 2009
Post: #18
18-02-2011 02:07 PM

Thanks for the publishing the link Ghis. Jane_D - you have mail.

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Zimmerman


Posts: 81
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #19
18-02-2011 02:37 PM

Was this tram depot in Waldram Place?
I know the building in Waldram Place it is across the railway from Forrest Hill Station, I think that at one time it was an Electrical Generating building as it was so close to the railway it is most likely to be for the railway.
There were three places that the trams terminated, one outside the what was the Capital Cinema London Road, seem to remember the 72,
Another was outside the now named Crystal Palace Hall, Perry Vale, here the local tramways were owned by different companies, a turnig place was in Walram Place so this power plant may have supplied the electricity for the company coming from Brockley.
This is not the Tramway in my book.
If you wonder what was where just through the railway bridge the blue podtacabbins are now, it was the Council Depot, and a very handy Pulic mens Urinal.

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Zimmerman


Posts: 81
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #20
18-02-2011 08:51 PM

If a tram broke down they had their own Recovery Lorry, this one seen at New Cross. The normal practice was the tram following, was taken out of service, and pushed the broken down one back to the depot, but up Dog Kennel Hill it needed the Lorry as well.



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