Since the start of the year, it’s fair to say that my children’s book Bat Dog’s Forever Home has taken up huge chunk of my writing life. The journey has been exciting, exhilarating, and inspiring. I’m going to do an update on the Bewick Press blog about what the publishing process has looked like in terms of sales, seeking reviews, etc. But, on a personal level, being a ‘published’ author is everything I hoped it would be. It is hugely rewarding to hear people say they love what I’ve written, especially children. And, regardless of sales figures, what better outcome is there than bringing a little joy into someone’s life?
So, now that Bat Dog is settling into a manageable rhythm in terms of admin and marketing, I’m finally able to focus on the thing that inspired me to start blogging in the first place – my novel.
I finished my first draft last year, bang on target for my self-imposed six month deadline. But, little did I realise, that was only the beginning! Since then, I’ve been doing read-throughs, edits and rewrites and, finally, the end is in sight.
I have found a copy editor, hit the ‘accept offer’ button on Reedsy, scheduled in a start date, and given myself a publication date of ‘the beginning of September’ – okay not an exact date, but close enough. I’ve also found an incredible cover designer, who I am super excited about working with, and plan to have the first five chapters distributed as a sampler at the YALC in July.
Last year, I was full of self-doubt. I was petrified that everyone would hate what I’d written, convinced that it wouldn’t achieve anything more than a five-star review from my husband or my parents. But one curious thing that happens when you start to put yourself out there, is that you start to grow in confidence. I’m sure plenty of people will still hate it, that’s a given. No one in the history of the written word has come up with something that pleases everybody. But at the same time, I feel like I can actually do this. I can publish a novel that at least some people not related to me will enjoy.
When I’ve finished my rewrites (end of March is my goal for this), I will post some more info. I might, if I’m brave enough, let you see the blurb and the first chapter. But, for now, a title will have to suffice. And that title is: