Wednesday, 23 March 2011

The one in which the news someone wants me to write a book causes me to panic somewhat

For as long as anyone can remember I've been banging on about the great books I was going to write.

Although, as more and more people I knew became authors, I got quieter and quieter about it. I suppose I knew that I was running out of excuses and I certainly wasn't short of experiences to draw on.

I've even got a few chapters and a synopsis ready to go. Thing is though, publishers want to see the whole thing. They don't share your confidence in a sparkling story that gallops along all the way through. For all they know it might just fizzle out after a promising start.

But my problem is deadlines. I am unable to do things without one. OK I can do some things like eat chocolate and spend ages indulging in mild google stalking. Or looking at shoes or making soup. But stuff like this, that really requires stamina, won't get done without one. Particularly when there are shoes to be bought, navels to gaze at and money to be earned.

Then I had a flash of inspiration. It was probably in the shower, that's where most of my inspiration arrives, with the shower gel. I could perhaps, possibly, maybe get a non-fiction book commissioned without writing it first. Bingo.

A few days later, somewhere between shampoo and condition (By the way, I don't rinse and repeat, do you?) another flash. I'll write about blogging and how I think it has really helped me get out of my funk.

The more I thought about it, the more sense it made. Blogging For Happiness would be about the benefits of wittering to the world on the Internet. Brilliant.

Then something really strange happened, the second publisher I tried said she liked it. As young people might say O M G. There was some to-ing and fro-ing about which chapters go where and what should be covered. Then we fixed a deadline for the end of June and she sent me a contract to sign.

The contract is still sitting here on my desk. Obviously she didn't give me a deadline for returning it, did she?

But now what? You may well ask. The fabulous ladies of the British Mummy Bloggers forum have generously and kindly offered to be interviewed or otherwise helpful. I've got a couple of experts lined up to offer opinion. I've even worked out that broken down into chapters, none of the sections are that much bigger than other things I've written.

What I also have is a rising sense of panic. What if I can't do it? What if there isn't enough time? This book-writing business was all very well as a very small thing miles away, but it isn't any more.

So in the spirit of practicing what I'm going to be preaching when I get on with it I thought I'd put fingers to keyboard and blog it out the scary stuff... I feel better already.


  1. WOW that is amazing! If you want any help, let me know. ;)

  2. Ellen, this book will be brilliant & I can't wait to read it.

    And though I write a lot ofthe time about serious stuff, I reckon blogging & tweeting saved my sanity & stopped me from sinking into depression when Glandular Fever & its aftermath made off with all my physical strength.

    Now, just get on with it. You have a good idea & you can write. Sign the contract today & post it too.

  3. come on. I need your inspiration

  4. Marylin, Thanks very much.

    Caron, thanks that's exactly what I need to hear.

    Julie, no pressure then!

  5. Just to know you have a contract to sign is surely encouragement enough?! That's fantastic news and they wouldn't have offered you that contract if they didn't think you could do it. Money is incredibly tight these days in the publishing industry and they are very choosy who they publish.

    Now, get on with it, woman, and keep us posted!!

    CJ xx

  6. Blogging did help make me happy. I am more than happy (see what I did there) to help in any which way I can. It will be great, a bit like blogging for bliss, only british and better

  7. Well done for getting motivated. It's the hardest part of writing. There was an article recently about "writer's block" in one of the papers that talked about this getting started/procrastination bit is the biggest stumbling block for most writers.

  8. Sounds exciting! Please let me know if there is anything i can do to help xx

  9. I know how you feel and exactly what you some point you wonder - what in the world have I done. But just do it, little baby steps, one day at a time, it'll all come together. I assure you. Good luck, I'll be following your journey. And glad to help in any way.

  10. Woo hoo. Fantastic. How exciting.

    If you're a person who likes deadlines, then that probably means you work well under pressure. And June? That's pressure. So don't worry and just let it all sink in and then write for your life.

    You'll do brilliantly.

  11. How absolutely fab. I'd heard your story on the BMB forum already but seeing it written out like this gave me real tingles of inspiration. You go, lady!

  12. In a little voice, with hand up, "So what are you waiting for? Why is the contract not signed and back in the post? Have you heard of "Feel the fear and do it anyway?" It's a great book if you haven't yet read it. Good luck and hope to hear you've signed, been given loads of deadlines and you're off x

  13. What brilliant news! I'd love to be interviewed. As an expat Brit in the UK blogging definitely made me feel less isolated! I even penned a book of my own with a fellow blogger

  14. Fantastic news! I'm just jealous that you had the idea before me...;)
    But seriously, if you need a daddy-blogger's point-of-view, you know where to find me.


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