Time to Move On

So I have finally made my peace with the inevitable and am moving on. We had a wonderful time full of hope and expectation but I have to face up to the fact that it might be over. There are different people for me to get to know, new fun to be had and whilst I enjoyed our time together I need to be free of you. It’s not you it’s me.

Yes I am starting the draft of my next book and shutting the Thicker Than Water folder on my laptop. I will still punt it out to agents when I have some time, but however difficult it is I need to focus on the next big thing which is of course another book. I have already fiddled around with some notes, drafted a (far too long) synopsis, written some sketchy character biographies but it isn’t going to transmogrify into a potential bestseller unless I give it a bit of affection and stop spending time with my old love.

Now I adore those characters from Thicker Than Water I really do and in my head they are still living their lives but I find I turn to them with a big sigh now. When I first got to know them they offered me possibilities and potential. This was the one that was going to open the door for me into the wonderful world of published authorship, parties, champagne and all the rest of the bells and whistles. That didn’t happen (or hasn’t happened yet – see I really am finding it difficult to let go)

But writing Thicker Than Water was easy. I wasn’t working. I handed in my notice and headed into the summer house with the laptop under my arm inspired and eager. I dropped the girls off at school then scurried out there for the next six hours and wrote and wrote and wrote. So easy.

Now however, not so easy. When the six figure publishing deal didn’t materialise within a month or two I had to go back to work and since then have been editing and honing, submitting and entering competitions. I have been relentless but after a year of that I need to accept a truth that it might not happen. I have taken a pay cut so I can have one day off a fortnight which is my writing day. But at the moment that day has been spent (mostly) crafting submissions for Thicker Than Water. It has left me very little time to focus on anything else.

But in the back of my mind a nugget of a new book has been growing. It is unstoppable. Even if I didn’t want to write it I would have to. Like a lump of proving dough, it has developed and grown despite me and is shouting out to be kneaded and moulded into something amazing. And even if I can’t make it amazing, it is mine to shape and deliver the best I can.

I can feel that frisson of hope and excitement in my bones. I can imagine myself talking about this book, the characters, where I got the idea and the inspiration, how I managed to rattle off a best seller whilst working full time (just read the posts here folks). I am champing to get on with it so I must. I shall heed the calling and do what I have to do and get that book written.

Who knows what might happen?

January is Too Miserable for Resolutions

Happy New Year! It’s February and for me the beginning of my ‘new you’ with the resolutions, denying myself and misery that new year entails. I can’t be doing with all that hair shirt wearing in January. January is miserable enough as it is without lobbing in diet, exercise and no booze. So I wait until February. All the Christmas chocolate has been eaten, the festive cheese just hard rinds at the back of the fridge and the bottles of port and baileys have been reduced to a few splashes lurking at the bottom of the bottle.

Despite having had a whole extra month to consider how I am going to transform my life in the new year and make it so much better than the year before, sadly my resolutions tend to veer towards the eat less exercise more variety as my clothes are still a little snug. However this year I have decided to take a new approach. Here is my one and only resolution:

Not be so hard on myself

This year I will improve my life by being proud of what I have done and who I am rather than being slightly disappointed and feel that I have to change things in order for everything to be fine.

I have written two books for heaven’s sake – OK they are still to be discovered by the book buying masses. But that’s quite a feat to have even completed them. And I have ideas for lots more. Through Twitter and blogging I have connected with lots of inspirational people and opportunities which make me want to write more. I have learnt that every time I write I learn something, even if it is only during my half hour slot on the train into work.  And even if agents and publishers have yet to be persuaded of my literary talent I have discovered that I really enjoy writing.  It makes me happy and that is perhaps more important.

So I am approaching 2016 with excitement and anticipation. Think about how much new stuff I will have written, how many new friendships I will have made and how much more I will have learnt and improved in the coming year. I spend my working days chasing targets and KPIs so I am not going to give myself goals and milestones. My resolution is to enjoy everything that happens, to keep on with what I am doing to make even more things happen and be proud of all the things I do. Happy 2016!