Huge apologies to anyone who follows this blog and has been wondering where I’ve got to – life has been hectic recently. My last post was on publication day for THE FEAR and, since then, I’ve either been out and about promoting it or bent over my laptop trying to finish my next book. Here’s a quick rundown of what’s happened and what I’ve been up to…
My fourth Sunday Times bestseller
I used to raise my eyebrows when established writers would worry on social media about impending publication. ‘How can you be worried?’ I’d think. ‘You’ve had loads of bestsellers. Of course you’ll have another one. You have an army of loyal fans.’ But that’s where Imposter Syndrome kicks in. So many writers (myself included) worry that our previous books were a fluke and that with this book we’ll be revealed to be the writing frauds that we feel we are.
This isn’t an unusual feeling for me. Even when I was a manager at a university I’d often think, ‘seriously, they’ve given me all this responsibility? Shouldn’t they give that to someone who knows what they’re doing?’ When the truth was I’d worked in eLearning for years, I kept up to date with all the latest developments in the industry and I knew exactly what I was doing. But logic goes out of the window in the run up to publication and when fear kicks in you listen to your ‘monkey’ rather than your ‘human’ (I read a fascinating non-fiction book recently called The Chimp Paradox which talks about how your base emotions/monkey take over in stressful situations and your human/logical side is drowned out).
Anyway, I don’t take anything for granted in this industry. I’ve had enough ups and downs in my career to know that a career in publishing isn’t a linear line so I am incredibly grateful that THE FEAR became a bestseller. A HUGE thank you to everyone who bought, reviewed and recommended it.
Taylor on a Train
One of the most exciting and nerve-wracking PR events for the launch of The Fear was a signing I did on the Bristol to Paddington train. Organised by my PR Sabah Khan and Richard Salkeld, Media and Communications Manager for Great Western Railway, I had the most unusual, and amusing, trip to London. I won’t go into all the faff about changing trains because our original train was cancelled and the wild goose chase as Sabah tried to catch up with us but it was brilliant fun. I signed far more books than I ever have at any event and I had some great chats with commuters and readers. And apologies again to the First Class commuters again for all the disruption!
Facebook Live / Fab Night In / Newcastle Noir / Dead Good Book Awards
Shortly after publication I went to HarperCollins Towers (aka the News Corp building in London Bridge) to film a live interview with Claire Frost from The Sun’s Fabulous magazine. If you missed it you can still watch it on Facebook here: bit.ly/2v1W8Ya
Another great event was the ‘Fab Night In’, organised by The Sun’s Fabulous magazine. It was held right right at the top of the News Corp building and featured me, Sarah Pinborough, BA Paris and Adele Parks being interviewed by Fabulous’s fiction editor extraordinaire Claire Frost. We all laughed A LOT.
In May I went up to Newcastle to take part in a panel with fellow psychological thriller authors Sarah Stovell and Melanie McGrath. As with last year I was made to feel hugely welcome by the organiser Jackie Collins aka Dr Noir and it was a fascinating panel that touched on some interesting topics (Staunch prize anyone?)
Unfortunately I missed Crime Fest in Bristol because I was struck down by a virus days before and spent the whole weekend in bed but I’m hugely looking forward to Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Festival in Harrogate next month. I’ve been attending as a guest for years and I’m so thrilled to be on the programme this year as a table host at Lee Child’s murder mystery dinner on the Saturday night.
Talking of thrilled, I found out today that THE FEAR has been shortlisted for the DEAD GOOD READER AWARDS which are presented on Saturday afternoon at the festival. It’s shortlisted in the ‘Most Recommended Read’ category which I’m really chuffed about. I’m up against Elly Griffiths again (she beat me last year) so the battle is on to see who gets the most reader votes! If you enjoy my books you can vote for THE FEAR here: https://www.deadgoodbooks.co.uk/dead-good-reader-awards-2018/
SLEEP edits are afoot
I finished the first draft of my next book, SLEEP, in the third week of May and I’m currently writing the second draft after receiving my edits back a few weeks ago. Compared to THE FEAR this book has been slightly nightmarish to write. Not because of the subject matter (more about that in another post) but because I wasn’t entirely sure what the theme was before I started writing it. I’d plotted it, as I do all my books (since I pantsed THE LIE anyway) but some books flow as you write them and some books don’t. SLEEP was most definitely a ‘bumpy’ read after the first draft and I wasn’t entirely sure why. Thankfully the editorial feedback from my agent and editor pinpointed where the problems lay and now I’m fixing them. On a gut level this book certainly feels like a better, smoother read. Here’s hoping!
So, that’s it for now. If you haven’t read THE FEAR yet it’s currently 99p for the ebook and £3.50 for the paperback (but not forever!). And if you could vote for it in the Dead Good Book Awards that would be great.
See you on the other side of the edits for SLEEP. Hopefully I’ll have a cover to show you…