Two years ago today, I woke up at my Aunty’s place ready to take Trouble to a doctor’s appn in Perth. As you do when you’re addicted to email and Internet, I checked my email on my phone and almost rolled out of bed in shock! I had an email from Angela James at Carina Press telling me they wanted to BUY MY BOOK!!!!
As I jumped wildly around the room and my bemused child looked on not quite knowing WHAT to think, I totally forgot the fact it was April Fools Day. I called my family and emailed all my friends. One of my good writing friends said, ‘Are you sure it’s not an April Fools’ Day!?’
I hadn’t even contemplated that! But it wasn’t. Turns out editors might be scary and (between you and I) they sometimes seem to operate on a TOTALLY different calendar to us mere mortals, they are not cruel! And it WAS true!!
Angela James and my fabulous Carina editor Charlotte Herscher loved my story about a girl dressed up as a Christmas Fairy and her grumpy boss. ONE PERFECT NIGHT came out eight months later, but in that time, I sold my second book – JILTED – to the lovely Haylee Nash at Harlequin Australia.
Since then I have published two more books, have a fifth coming out in October this year (OUTBACK DREAMS) and am contracted for two more books. There have been so many highs during this time:
- See covers for the first time – not much comes close to this buzz for me
- Being voted Australia’s 10th favourite novelist in this year’s Booktopia’s Australia’s Favourite Novelist contest.
- Being nominated for an ARRA Award last year for ONE PERFECT NIGHT and this year for JILTED.
- WINNING Favourite Contemporary Romance with JILTED at this years Australian Romance Readers Convention.
- Finding my fabulous agent Helen Brietweiser at Cornerstone Literary Agency.
- Selling JILTED to HQN, which means it will soon be published in North America as well as down under.
One the other side of the published fence, it is not all chocolates and roses. My dream has come true in that writing is now not merely a hobby but one of my three full-times jobs (yeah, work that out). But this means that I have to write even when I’m not at all in the mood. I constantly deal with doubt crows and demons telling me I can’t do this and that my successes thus far have been a fluke.
Okay… I can’t think of many more downsides – it IS mostly chocolates and roses! And my dream/goal now is to keep it up. To keep improving my craft and developing my story telling skills. To keep writing books that readers email thanking me for! Oh, I’m getting a little teary thinking about what an honour it is have a reader trust me enough to give up a few hours of their life with my book!
So… two years on from getting THE EMAIL that changed my life in many ways, I want to THANK everyone who has been on some of the journey with me – my family, my friends, my publishers, my editors, my agent, RWAus and most of all my readers!
Books are written to be READ!
NB. Currently a number of online stores have the ebooks of MAN DROUGHT and JILTED at reduced prices: