By “new author” I mean “me,” but it sounds more magnanimous this way.
Publication seems like the end goal for writers. Actually, it’s just the beginning. Unless we sell gazillions and become household names, there’s no guarantee of being published again. Hell, even being a household name isn’t enough – RandomHouse refused to publish Joan Collins’ manuscript, even though they’d already paid her, because it was so terrible.
Most of us receive contracts for one, two, or three books at a time; rarely more. Once those books are published, we need to convince the publisher (or another publisher) to give us a new contract. Lots of factors come into play but, naturally, sales figures are one of the biggest – publishers are businesses, and they need to make money if they want to keep publishing books.
So, if there’s an author whose books you love – or just an author you love – and she isn’t at Rowling levels of stardom, how can you help her get that next contract?
1. Buy the book.
Continue reading “5 Ways To Help A New Author”
Authors on the whole are a neurotic, anxious bunch. Okay, most aren’t quite as bad as me, but nearly all of us fret. A lot.
Maybe it’s because we’ve trained ourselves to scrutinise our words and the impressions they make, and that extends into over-scrutinising everything. Maybe it’s because publishing is like war – 5% terror and 95% waiting – and in those periods of waiting we inevitably overanalyse and catastrophise everything. Maybe it’s Ebola. I don’t know.
Whatever the reason, one of the consequence is that most of us suffer from author envy at some point. Maybe at every point. When you’re unagented, you’re jealous of authors with agents. When you’re agented, you’re jealous of authors with publishing deals. When you get a deal, you’re jealous of authors with bigger deals. When you get a big deal, you’re jealous of authors with… better hair, or something. Those coiffured bastards.
Who are they sleeping with, huh??
Continue reading “It’s Not Easy Being Green – Author Envy”
I’m a horror junkie. Yeah, I know: I write fluffy romcoms and I don’t believe in ghosts, demons, or anything supernatural, and any serial killer trying to abduct me would need a winch and a high tolerance for whining.
But I love horror. Gorefest or fade-to-black mindfuck. Serious or satirical. Hollywood or made in someone’s garage with a £10 budget and a bit part for Dave’s mum because she made all the sandwiches for the three-person crew.
The only thing I don’t do is Generic Monsters – zombies, vampires, and werewolves can all fuck off. Notable exception 28 Days Later, which is definitely worth a watch.
So, here are my recommendations of five movies to watch for Halloween…
THE POWER OF ANNA COMPELS YOU (to watch)
1. Severance (2006)
Continue reading “5 Horror Movies to Watch this Halloween”
Well, okay, just one. I’m super proud to announce I’m now an author with the Headline Publishing Group, along with authors like Neil Gaiman, Jill Shalvis, and Martina Cole.
Can I just reiterate: I CAN PUT MY NAME ON A LIST WITH THESE AUTHORS. I CAN’T EVEN.
My wonderful agent Amanda Jain announced the deal yesterday and no, it wasn’t an April fool. Don’t think THAT thought didn’t keep me up all night, ’cause it did.
Join me in screaming incoherently
and still a little bit worrying it was an April fool!
I’m reading The Road to Little Dribbling, a travel memoir by Bill Bryson.
In this morning’s chapter, Bill (I feel like I can call him Bill, after spending a decade travelling the world with him in his books) promoted a concept he’s come up with: we should all be allowed a list of a dozen things we hate without having to defend, justify, or explain it.
I think with most of mine, the explanation is self-evident:
- Small talk.
- People who call holidays ‘holibobs.’
- Love Actually.
- The people and charities dedicated to saving giant pandas from extinction.
- Books written in present tense.
- Gullible fools who claim the Loch Ness Monster isn’t real.
- People over 20 who brag about how much alcohol they drank on a night out.
- Brexit (see #5) and everyone who voted for it. All 20 million of them.
- The fetishisation of coffee.
What’s your list?
This is the final quiz, readers, since I’m off work now until 2019.
So today is a special TRUE or FALSE round, and since it’s a little easier there are seven questions instead of five.
- Jesus had a brother called Simon.
Continue reading “Advent Quiz: Last day!”
Day 13 here.
Today is a kind of mix of food and drink and entertainment and anything I could think of that didn’t seem too hard…
- In ‘A Nightmare Before Christmas’, what vegetable does Jack Skellington have for a head?
Continue reading “Advent Quiz: Day 14”
Day 12 here.
Today is a music round that spans the ages.
Name the decade in which each of these songs was UK Christmas Number 1.
- Band Aid II – Do They Know It’s Christmas
Continue reading “Advent Quiz: Day 13”
Day 11 here.
Today is a science and nature round. I use that phrase loosely.
- Apart from eggs, name any of the basic ingredients of egg nog.
Continue reading “Advent Quiz: Day 12”
Day 10 here.
The theme today is “Anna desperately tries to come up with easier questions in any category, at all, ever.”
- In which fictional land is it “always winter but never Christmas?”
Continue reading “Advent Quiz: Day 11”