Hope for the best, prepare for the worst

This is one of the mantras stuck above my desk – it perfectly describes the juxta position you find yourself in when out on submission. So, in practical terms, what does ‘hoping for the best’ look like? It’s recognising the little wins along the way: a beta reader’s critique, an editor’s comments, the very fact…

Taking a break

There’s a lot of advice out there that says if you want to be a writer, you should write every day. Firstly, any advice that uses the word ‘should’ is advice I disregard. Secondly, writing every day does not work for me.  Early on in my writing journey I got trapped into thinking that because…

A read through

If you’ve finished a first draft or completed a round of edits, you’ll be planning a read through – a full read of your manuscript from start to finish.  Often when I am writing I keep the same routine, a series of mental signposts to tell my brain when it is Time to Write.  Some…

Pleased to meet you

If you’ve been writing for a while, you’ll be familiar with getting a manuscript polished and shiny, the plot honed, the arcs soaring, with your characters feeling more familiar than members of your own family.  But here’s the cruel part: you have to move on and write a new story.  You plummet from perfectly crafted…

100 rejections

The 100 rejections hashtag has been floating around twitter for the last couple of years and I thought ‘100 rejections – that’s nothing’, however, to actually get 100 rejections in a year requires concerted effort.  When authors say they’ve received eighty-odd rejections, it’s over their career to date, so usually several years.  This scheme encourages…

The Pitch

Being able to pitch your story within a couple of sentences is vital in the book industry with the aptly named Elevator Pitch coming from the idea of being able to pitch your idea should you ever find yourself in a lift with an agent or editor.  Similar things to the pitch are loglines and…

For the love of books

One of my new year’s aims is to read more.  But it’s not just reading more – I’m making it A Thing.  I’m going to savour it (and savouring ticks mental health boxes galore).  I’m going to light the fire, warm my slippers, unearth the cosy blanket from wherever the kids have hidden it, make…