I wrote my first story at the age of 5 or 6, in the back of a book of sums. It was about Batman and mostly comprised familiar dialogue from the TV programme ("Holy tadpoles, Batman!").

 

As a child, I churned out boarding school stories in which all the girls had multi-syllable names and the school was a cruise ship that sailed around the Mediterranean. Then, in my teens, I lapped up Victoria Holt's books and started writing gothic stories, though these soon developed into sagas.

 

In my twenties I wrote a colossal (as in 360,000 words) historical saga. Although I found an agent, nothing came of it.

 

Fast forward some years, and I worked with an authors' advisory service and learned a great deal about the craft of writing romantic novels.

 

I then joined the Romantic Novelists' Association's New Writers Scheme, in which each year 250 unpublished romance writers have the chance to submit a novel and synopsis for consideration by published writers, who generously share their expertise by reading the scripts and compiling detailed reports. Wanting to build up a body of work with which to approach an agent or publisher, I  submitted three books to the NWS, one of which was The Deserter's Daughter.

 

Here are some posts about my writing:

 

Getting a Literary Agent:

 

Rejections!  

 

Getting an agent 1  

 

Getting an agent 2  

 

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From Book Deal to Publication:

 

The book deal  

 

The dreaded synopsis 

 

3 months to publication day  

 

2 months to publication day 

 

1 month to publication day 

 

Finding my book in the public library catalogue    

 

An unexpected and wonderful moment just before publication.

 

Blog Interviews & Guest Blogs:

 

Reading For Solace. Guest Blog on Maggie James's Website.

 

A Look Behind The Book with Susanna Bavin. Interview by Tara Greaves.

 

Using a Real Location: Setting The Deserter's Daughter in Chorlton. Guest post for Allison & Busby.

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Miscellaneous:

 

Learning from critiques  

 

The editing process  

 

More editing - on paper or on-screen 

 

Writing by hand  

 

Writing by hand 2   

 

Connecting with other writers 

 

Character development - a technique  

 

NaNoWriMo - is your first bound to be the best?   

 

Professional eavesdropping  

 

Why 'said' is better than the alternatives 

 

 

 

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