I’m so pleased to tell you I’ve signed a three-book deal with Hodder & Stoughton.
There have been tears of joy, celebrations, and just a few nerves at the prospect of deadlines.
It’s a dream come true, but it didn’t happen overnight.
There’s been so much waiting, nail-biting and doubt along the way, but I hope my story gives comfort to others that there is always hope.
So here’s how it came about:
A brief background
My first novel, Her Forget-Me-Not Ex, was published in 2015 by a small press. It sold well, much better than I expected in fact, but it had always been my goal to have an agent, so when I finished my second book I sent it out. I signed with Megan Carroll of Watson, Little Literary Agency in March 2016. Megan loved my second book, a summery friends-to-lovers story set in Provence. She approached publishers with it, and although we had a few near misses and really positive feedback, it didn’t sell. I won’t lie, this was disheartening (for both of us – it’s easy to overlook how passionately agents represent their clients and how much work they do on their behalf).
During months of not hearing anything, I had to keep the faith, be patient (I’m not very good at that) and keep writing.
On the bright side, the submissions process is a slow one, and by the time Megan had exhausted her list of publishers, I had almost finished writing my third book (a Christmas story, set partly in England and in Provence). I’m glad I did because book 3 attracted more interest, including offers from two publishers.
I was utterly thrilled and, after Megan’s call, I confess there were a few tears. This was what I’d been working towards for the last fifteen years, after all.
I signed with Hodder & Stoughton, who will publish The Christmas Holiday in October this year, re-release my first novel (under a new title) next year, and publish a third book which I’m currently writing in time for Christmas 2020.
Yet to come
I’ve already begun working with my editor and her team, and I’m thrilled with how it’s going. Although I’ve been published before, Hodder & Stoughton is a large traditional publisher, and a lot of the process is new to me. I never realised so much work went into bringing a book to publication beyond the author writing ‘The End’. It’s exciting to be getting input from so many experienced professionals, and I know my book will be all the better for it.
The Novelistas have asked me to blog about the process of bringing a book to publication, so over the next few months I’ll be sharing my experiences with you.
One of the things I love about writing is that I’m constantly learning, and I hope that never stops.