Good news: I aten’t dead!
But I’ve been a little quiet of late. My social media is mostly RTs, and I’ve not been popping up at book launches, or updating the blog.
We all know there are three potential reasons for an author to go dark:
- Zombies (and associated embarrasment about the whole eating people at social gatherings thing)
- I just hate you
GUESS WHAT IT’S NONE OF THOSE
One important thing: I haven’t stopped writing. In fact, I’ve written boatloads since we last caught up.
I spent a long time living in Oxford, in a not-at-all-like-Malory Towers boarding school. I provided pastoral care, welfare support and rules type stuff for a houseful of 16+ students studying for the IB. And when I wasn’t doing that, I wrote books, like Pea’s Book of Best Friends, and The Secrets of Billie Bright.
Then I met a cute human on rollerskates, while I was also on rollerskates, and you know what happens after that, right? You pack up the cat and both move to Coventry.
(There are other reasons, but *handwave*.)
Along the way, I started a new kind of writing job: copy and content writing in a marketing department, using words to tell people stuff. Brochures and postcards. Websites and blogs. Sales emails and social media.
It’s like books. There’s a reader. I think about them a lot; what they need. I find ways to reference ten Spice Girls songs in a single promo email. Apparently that’s what I need, too.
Later, I started a fellowship with the RLF, giving university students support and advice with their academic writing.
And I wrote, too: for myself; for you. I still do, on the train to work, frantic joyous 25-minute bursts of imagination where my characters do their thing, where I have freedom to play with those paths. I write to carve a little space for myself, every day, where the only boss is me.
I get to work 400, 700 words down before I’ve even had breakfast and I am INVINCIBLE.
That’s what’s been happening. So where are we now?
1: If I’ve been a bit quiet or slow to respond, it’s because I am buuuuuusy.
2: Right now: I’m writing something new, two somethings new, in collaboration with quite stupendous humans, and it’s about the scariest and most wonderful project I could ever dream of, except I can’t tell you about it yet. But when I do you’ll be as excited as me.
*drumroll for part three, aka always the best part*
3: There will be a new book this year, out 5th September 2019, and available for pre-order now.
It’s for readers aged 8-12.
It’s about dragons and toxic masculinity.
It’s called Max Kowalski Didn’t Mean It, the cover is incredible, and I can’t wait for you to read it.
Cover illustration: Andrew Bannecker
Cover design: Dominica Clements
Don’t want to wait till September?
Enter now to win one of these beautiful proofs. (Open to UK addresses only.)