Wow. What a year it has been. My summer novel, Game of Scones, was a top ten Kindle bestseller and then won the Love Stories Best Romantic Ebook 2015 award, at a fancy cocktail bar in London.
I couldn’t ask for more and so appreciate everyone who bought and read the book. Above is a photo of me, on the night, with my lovely HarperCollins editor. I still think I’ve got that smile on my face!
One of the best things, about 2015, however, had been to meet so many lovely writers and bloggers. I’ve attended events organised by the wonderful Romantic Novelists Association and it’s been lovely to put some faces to names from the internet. Here I am with the fab Cathy Bramley, Trevor Williams, Karen Aldous and Holly Martin.
It’s also been a year for meeting things/people that have inspired me – this included a trip to Highclere Castle, as the series Downton Abbey inspired my 2013 debut Doubting Abbey…
… plus a night out in Manchester with the Dutch KLM flight attendant who inspired the character of Henrik in Game of Scones and its Christmas sequel.
… and a trip to… Ooh. Mustn’t give too much away! But here is a clue to my spring story, out soon!
Writing-wise – ie the craft itself – 2015 has been an exciting and challenging year. Game of Scones took my writing in a more romantic direction and I wasn’t sure it was going to work. Plus I’ve had a few dark moments, on receiving revisions from my editor, wondering if I am up to the job. I’ve been challenged and feel/hope my writing has moved forward, otherwise what is the point?
I recalled recently, how my New Year’s resolution always used to be “to get published this year”, back in the old days when I was new to the business and a little naive. I mean, getting published isn’t as simple as that. So many factors out of your control are involved, plus you need a little luck. But of one thing I have no doubt – if you are determined and persevere, you will get there eventually. Your path might just be longer than others. But don’t give up.
Of course, finally getting published, doesn’t mean that all problems and disappointments stop there and whilst 2015 has been a wonderful year for me, I am well aware that you are only as good as your next book – and I have no idea what challenges 2016 will throw my way. Having said that, I already have several pieces of great news that I should be able to share in January, so watch this space 🙂 And thanks, with all my heart, to all the people who have supported me and my writing this year. I’m eternally grateful. Here, have a cocktail on me!