Apologies to my friends and followers for the inordinate lapse in updates. The last months have been crazy and wonderful all at once. (Though with lots of tedious bits in between, despite my misguided belief that all that would stop when the best happened.)
Anyway. The big news is that my first novel is being published by Random House in June 2013. For obvious reasons, this has brought about much leaping and cheering in my household. (Most of it by me, a bit by my bemused kids, and a slightly bigger bit by my Cute American Husband who's been listening to me bang on about this novel for the wrong side of a decade.) Finally, you see, it looks like I might have achieved the one thing writers long for... No. Not millions of dollars, or a line of rubbery dolls made in the form of my main character. Though that sounds kind of cool. What we really crave, dream and long for is, well, readers. We say we love writing for the sake of it - and on one level we do of course; God knows we're not in it for the money - but writing and writing (and writing) with no or limited chance of a readership is less than satisfying. Actually, it can be soul destroying.
But now I've had my Young Adult novel picked up by Random House which means that the first part of this dream looks like it might come true. It means I'll be able to hold in my hands a book with my name on the cover and even - deep breath - see it on a shelf in a bookshop somewhere without my having to break any laws or codes of decency to get it there. The backing of a publisher with the reputation and prestige of Random House means that the chances of finding readers - real readers who actually pay to read my story - have now significantly improved. However, that's not the end of it.
Which is where you lovely people come in. (insert obsequious smiley face here)
Over the coming months, right up to and following the launch of my novel, I will, on occasion, draw on your lovely brains, mouths and keyboards to help me get word out about this novel and, eventually, perhaps even buy it. This is the way of publishing now - word of mouth and online support will make or break this book, and without the support of those who love - or even vaguely like - my writing will hopefully be prepared to back it when asked.
But more on that later. If you'll indulge me.
Right now, I'm nearing the end of revisions and am hoping to have a near-to-final draft of said novel in the hands of my brilliant editor within a fortnight, so I will have to disappear again to hold up my end of the deal and deliver a manuscript that is good enough to soon become a book.
Bear with me while I sort out my end of the arrangement and, in the meantime, prepare yourselves for updates and requests in the coming months aimed entirely at helping publicise and advocate for my new and first baby, currently known as Full Forward. (Yes, I mean my novel. Sheesh.)
I hope you will indulge (understand/tolerate) these occasional requests, and that you will do what you can to help the process along.
I will tell you more about the novel in posts to come, but in the meantime, keep reading and stay in touch.