Sunday, 21 June 2009

Things that make you go Ooooh!

Look what I received earlier this week:


It's the proof of the cover/jacket artwork for novel 1! (click on the image if you want to see a larger version). All it's missing is the quote the lovely Kate Harrison provided for me (I think that'll be added in before final printing).

All I'd seen up to this point was an emailed jpg of the front cover so receiving the proofs in the post was a wonderful surprise. I received 5 in total, all printed on proper book cover thin card with the title of the book embossed in gold. I framed one and put it on my desk, sent one to my parents and am hanging onto the other three for a bit.

To be honest I'm not sure what to do with them (other than peek at them from time to time and make a little 'Oooh' sound when I touch the shiny gold title). I was tempted to fold one around the advanced copies I received a month ago so I can really get a feel for what my finished book will be like but I don't want to ruin one by creasing it up!

I'm thinking I could run some kind of competition when the book comes out and give away a copy of my book and one of the jacket artwork prints, signed. But would anyone want one? Would that be a bit of a wanky thing to do? It's not like I'm JK Rowling or Sophie Kinsella or someone!

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

It's oh so quiet!

Sorry for my recent radio silence but life has been somewhat hectic since I got back from this gorgeous place...

I couldn't have asked for a more wonderful place to go on a writing course - a small island off Greece called Skyr0s. The views were breathtaking, the sea was crystal clear, the weather gorgeous (36C one day) and the 'community' (I think that's probably the best word to describe the place where I stayed, we were so isolated) was just beautiful. And don't get me started on the people I met - I haven't laughed so much for ages.

The writing course itself was slightly disappointing (it was very much geared to total beginners) and I only had time to write 3,000 words of novel 2 but it didn't matter because I had so much fun, was constantly busy talking to people and doing stuff (and even made a panel of stained glass in one of the other classes!).

Now it's back to the real world and as my tan fades it's on with the writing again. I failed to meet my six month target (6th June) to finish the first draft of novel 2 so I've given myself a new deadline - the end of the month. I've plotted the final few scenes of the book and I reckon I've got about 10,000 words left to write. I can do it. There's just the small matter of a flat to sell/buy, author photos to be taken (by my very talented cousin) and a social life to attend to!

Writing novel 2 has been much, MUCH harder than writing novel 1. I've made life harder for myself by going for a totally different structure and 3 different POVs. I thought, when I was planning this novel, that going for another 1st person, hero's journey approach might bore me (after using that format for novel 1) but I'm starting to realise quite how much I've bitten off by doing things differently with book 2. It's like learning to write a novel all over again! There's going to be a LOT of editing this time around but it's okay, I'm quite looking forward to it (don't quote me on that in a month's time when I'm banging my head on the carpet!)

In other news I spent a fantastic day with the SAF girls last weekend and was sorry to leave when I did (party to go to). It was fantastic to meet everyone (some of whom I'd met before) and I thought the fact that ALL OF US showed up was a real sign of how close the group has become. You couldn't ask for a nicer, more supportive group of womag writers. You're all ace!

What else? The marketing team at my publishers has got behind book 1 and I received a copy of a fantastic sparkly in-house promotional email today. Apparently people were clammering to get hold of a copy of the proof of my book as a result of the email but I think it was more to do with the sparkling gift bag they were giving away with it (containing a mini bottle of champagne, a glitter bath bomb and some chocolates) rather than my novel.

Sod being an author, I want to work for a publishing company! ;)