Last January I was shaking with nerves as I walked into Cotes Brassiere in Covent Garden to meet up with a group of writers I only knew via Twitter (you can read about that here). What could have been an awkward meeting with these social media acquaintances was actually a fabulous lunch, and I left the restaurant that day with far more than a full stomach. I formed friendships that have deepened over the past few months. These women are not only talented writers, they too are juggling the pressures of raising a family, juggling a career, while trying to carve out precious time for working on manuscripts.
It seems incredulous that since our first encounter I have signed a book deal, published my debut novel The Sister. And I’m preparing for the publication of my second psychological thriller, The Gift, which will be released next month. Every step of the way from submissions to the edits and everything in-between, these phenomenal women have been my champions, my cheerleaders, and sometimes, my shoulders to cry on.
As lovely as my friends and family are, sometimes it takes another writer to fully understand the soaring highs and crushing lows of being an author, and having the support of other writers, offering to support other writers, has kept me grounded and given me the confidence to complete my second book.
For years I dreamed about the day I might hold my paperback in my hand and although that was certainly a high point of this year, the best bit of becoming an author without a doubt have been the people I have met, both online and off-line. Readers and writers, all united by our love of stories.