I am sure that the words ‘World Book Day’ strike fear into the heart of some parents as they once again have to come up with a costume idea. There are those who will rifle through the dressing up box and anything Disney or Star Wars related will be deemed to become a ‘book’.
However, I am one of those parents who loves seeing what Grace will conjure up as a costume this year. I usually help her put it together and both her dad and I always encourage her to make sure that it is a fictional character who was brought to life through the pages of a book.
Fictional characters are fascinating creatures. I love reading about them through poetry, prose and, of course, fiction and, with that in mind, I have decided to put together a small selection of bloggers who write fiction.
One of the most successful, who I first met as a blogger, is author and coach, is Rachael Lucas. She has written four romantic comedies – Sealed with a Kiss, Coming Up Roses, Wildflower Bay and Finding Hope at Hillside Farm (all brilliant, I hasten to add) and two Young Adult novels – The State of Grace and My Box-Shaped Heart.
Nikki Young is a blogger, writer, copywriter and author and lives with her family in Kent. Her first book, The Mystery of the Disappearing Underpants is a mystery story for 8-12 year olds and it was released in April 2017. Her second book is called Time School: We Will Remember Them and is a time-travelling mystery adventure. She has some fantastic reviews for them both over on Amazon.
Writing a book can be a long and arduous process. It can take hours of work and, because there is no ‘quick win’ it can take a while to really see the fruits of your labour. One such blogger who comes to mind on this is Sophie from Raising Revolutionaries. Since her eldest was born, six years ago, she has written three novels. Of course, having children presses pause on your career aspirations (as I well know myself) and Sophie has told me that she was doing ‘a fairly good job of starting to get them out into the world of submissions before my youngest came along, but there hasn’t been much writing going on for the last 18 months…’. I have seen the synopsis to all 3 of her books and they are all fantastic.
The first, ‘Lili Badger, is a coming of age novel set in a society very similar to our own. It follows the fortunes of a working class, mixed race teenager as she struggles to find a place for herself in a world whose values have become twisted. The second is ‘While I’m Alone’ and is influenced by a tradition of literature exploring women’s mental health and highlights the concerns of a generation of young women struggling to find their place in the world – and fearing that it might just be them that’s been mad all along. This one really resonated with me. Finally, ‘Down to the Sea’ is the most recent. She is still putting together final draft, but is hoping to get it to agents in the next couple of months.
Jess McGlynn from Catch a Single Thought released her book back in May 2015. ‘Secrets of the River’ has been one that I have meaning to read for a long time now. It focuses on Isabelle who moves to a small riverside village in France, hoping to leave behind the secrets of her past. She soon discovers she isn’t the only one trying to escape this and that sometimes there are things which simply can’t remain hidden. It really does sound like the sort of book I would love.
The most recent novel to have been released is from Jo Middleton at Slummy Single Mummy. Playgroups and Prosecco sounds like brilliant comedy and right up my street. The book centres on Frankie who stumbles through life as a single mum. She has to endure events that anyone who has had children can identify with. As a result, she accidentally forms a splinter group of single parents from the local playgroup and, according to all the reviews on Amazon, you would be a fool to miss this one!
Another blogger who is venturing into the world of Young Adult Fiction is Amanda from The Family Patch. She has started a fantasy series and is sharing it on her blog one chapter at a time as she works on it. It is based in a fantasy world, not too unlike our own medieval period, and follows a group of people called ‘The Brethren’ who are able to manipulate the fabric of the world in which they live. Go over and have a read. I found it captivating.
One final blogger who I would love to see published one day is Tracey Bowden from One Frazzled Mum. Her writing is superb and I have often read chapters from her fiction over on her blog. Go and have a delve into her writing when you have a moment – you won’t regret it!
Writing a book is a wonderful thing but it is ruddy hard work and rarely has a huge financial pay-off at the end. Ross, my other half, now has 4 published books (3 of which were self-published), two further books coming out this year with ECW press and he has also written a film called ‘Winter Ridge’ which you can currently find on Amazon and Netflix. His writing has helped me see first hand how the publishing industry works, and helped me to realise that writing the book is really only the start of it.
There is a saying that ‘everyone has a book in them’. I might do, but I don’t think it will ever be written. I certainly don’t have the patience that many do. I will stick to poetry I think. A far quicker way of writing!
Don’t forget, if you write poetry, prose or short fiction, that Prose for Thought is a linky which comes out on my blog on the first Thursday of every month and stays open for 3 weeks for submissions. I hope to see you there!