What a hoot...
Writing is great fun. Being my own boss is just a tiny part of it. Being able to build and destroy as I prefer, characters, locations, even whole worlds if I want, is even better. But I'm just beginning to realise what it is about writing that offers the greatest fun of all.
So far I've completed two manuscripts. The first, Conspiracy of Cats, was published in August 2021. My second, Making Sacrifices, will be published later on in 2022. But let's just go back to the weeks leading up to my very first book being published.
I remember being really nervous and even afraid, as publication day approached. Friends and family had read and enjoyed my story. But they might have been lying, they may just have wanted to spare my feelings. Self-doubt crept in and told me I was fooling myself, I was stupid to think I anyone would actually buy my book, and those who did would regret spending their hard earned money on it. But I'd recruited a number of ARC readers in the lead up to publication... people who offer honest reviews in return for an advance copy of the manuscript. In the final days before publication these reviews began to appear on Amazon and on Goodreads and they weren't simply good, they were pretty damn fantastic. As the post-publication weeks turned into months my reviews came from verified purchases. People were not just buying and reading my book, they took the time to post more positive reviews. For me, this is where the real fun lies. Knowing that readers are enjoying the story I've written is an amazing feeling. One of the best ever.
One of my most memorable reviews , came from my mother-in-law. She's in her seventies and rather proper. I was afraid she'd find my main character, Jos, a little too foul mouthed, or my villain to awful to bear. But no. She loved the story. Do you fancy writing a review, I wondered. Yes, she said... she would write a review.
I then went on Amazon watch, awaiting the publication of this expected review. But I was looking in the wrong place. One morning a white envelope popped through the letterbox. It contained a little card and, inside, was a scrap of paper in my mother-in-law's handwriting.... "Conspiracy of Cats, curious chilling compulsive read".
This will always my me best review ever, and here it is, stuck to my fridge...