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I hate clichés but ... dreams can come true

Updated: Apr 17

In the spring of 2020, about 18 months after I started writing my first novel, I thought I had pretty much finished. How embarrassing eh? I was so naive and, hard to admit, a little bit arrogant; I honestly thought that was all it took. You had an idea for a book, wrote it and then someone would tell you how brilliant it was and publish it! Ha ha! If I knew then that my writing journey had barely begun, would I have finished? Maybe not, but then again, maybe it was helpful - my ignorance about the book writing process allowed me to believe that I should just keep going. There is an element of stubbornness too - but that's just my nature.

After another couple of years and a few complete re-writes - taking the POV from third person to first person present, changing the timeline, adding new characters along with a whole lot more plot and sub-plot twists and turns - I thought, once again, it's now ready for the world. I sent it to 10 agents - surely one of them would love it and want it? Responses came in; short and swift and a resounding 'No', it wasn't for them. Rejection is not easy; even though all the chat groups tell you you shouldn't take it personally, I couldn't help it, I felt like a failure. I put the book aside, and took comfort in the praise from my children who, by the way, believed in my book from the very outset and were a huge source of encouragement throughout the 5 year process.

It was at that point, I found myself in a bookshop one day and took this photo in the YA section - I wanted to remember what it felt like to have written a book - a whole book created entirely from my imagination. In that moment I wanted, more than anything else, to see it on a bookshelf but it felt like an impossibility.

Of course, life takes twists and turns and events unfold despite you, and sometimes because of you. And, the result of a series of such events was my book being traditionally published, by an independent publisher, in February 2024. I will write about how this came about in more detail at a future time.

I have seen my book now in the hands of readers, friends and extended family but the greatest thrill of all came from seeing my book in the window of an independent bookshop.

Now, this was a dream come true.

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