What I learnt this week: 22nd October 2015

Another small writing step 

When you start out on a new path, whether it’s a hobby or a career, there is always so much to learn. It can be hugely daunting and at times you feel like you’re only pretending. That’s how it felt when I started writing. For years I wrote words that I didn’t believe anybody else would ever see. I was writing, but with no end game in sight.

Then I received my first contract and suddenly everything changed. I was writing with a purpose and at every turn I was taking small steps on the way to becoming a writer of romantic fiction. My first set of edits with a professional editor, the first time I saw my name on a book cover, my first dive into social media, creating a website. My first book published on Amazon. My first reviews – many good, a few that left me reeling. The time I held my first paperback.

Which leads me to this week, and the first time I saw my book in a bookstore. My publisher, Choc Lit, aren’t one of the big publishers who sell their books through WHSmiths and Waterstones. They sell through independent bookstores and sometimes WHSmiths travel shops. What a thrilling moment then, when a fellow author sent me through this photograph of Too Charming on the shelves of WHSmiths at Victoria Station.

Too Charming at WHSmiths, Victoria Station

Too Charming at WHSmiths, Victoria Station

And thanks to my amazing mum persuading all her friends to buy my book (!) my local Waterstones have also put both Do Opposites Attract and Too Charming on their shelves. I immediately raced down there and took this photograph (what do you mean, that was so uncool?!).

Waterstones, Staines

Waterstones, Staines

The next steps feel a lot higher and the chances are they will never come; seeing a book win an award, hitting the top 100, the top 10. Seeing my book in every high street.

Then again, as Oscar Hammerstein said:

If you don’t have a dream, how are you going to make a dream come true?

So I’m going to carry on pretending to be a writer and taking those small steps. Maybe one day it will all feel real.