It feels surreal, this. I am finally writing the blog which shares the news that I am to be a published author. I’ll say that again. (Steps aside for silent scream.)
I am… to be a published novelist.
I had always imagined this news would involve a single, spectacular announcement. But guess what? The reality is turning into a two-part story involving much pacing and biting of nails (mine!).
Given that it’s taken me the best part of (whisper this) a decade to land a book deal, I was going to hold off on this blog until the nails had grown back and I was in a position to tell you absolutely everything. But –the truth? If I delay any longer there is a very real danger I may actually explode. So….
My lovely literary agent recently put my new novel Recipes for Melissa on submission simultaneously to UK and international publishers as the editing was finished just ahead of the Frankfurt Book Fair. Amazingly German publishers instantly starting going bonkers for the book. SEVEN key names made offers and there was then an extraordinary auction (no; I can’t believe it either) which over several tantalising days secured an unexpectedly high advance in a two- book deal with a lovely major player ( part of Macmillan group globally. Double gulp).
I sat on the floor in disbelief.
The only problem was this was just a little bit like getting the icing before the cake. No author is worth their salt unless they are capable of extreme panic (even in the face of great news) – so I started to have a little panic. What if I was to be published in several foreign languages and not my own?
Of course my agent told me not to be so silly. And she was right, thank heavens. After an agonising wait during which my book has also been discussed “across the pond”, an offer has now come in from a UK publisher. All still under negotiation as I write (these things take time) so I’m sorry but I will have to press the pause button and delay sharing part two with you.
Meantime - a huge shout out for my wonderful literary agent who mentioned me in Frankfurt Book Fair despatches here
Very soon I will tell you what the book is all about and how two very special moments inspired me to write it. I will also share the UK news just as soon as I can (who needs nails?).
But for now?
A little lie down, I think!