About this time 3 years ago I embarked on the story of a worm, slug, maggot and a leech and their quest for beauty – and what this quest actually brought them.
Pregnant and suffering with ghastly morning sickness I was batting back any mediation work offered to me, and in an attempt to use my spare time productively during the 2 days a week that our eldest was at nursery I seized the opportunity to put pen to paper.
The tale gradually took shape. It had been rattling about in my head for some time (along with the story of a girl who tried unsuccessfully to bring some sunshine back from her holiday for her Grandma – could this be next?) And the pictures came together easily. I added the finishing touches after the birth of our youngest daughter during her daytime naps, and during her nighttime feeds I went over and over the text in my mind, the rhymes, the message – how and where could I improve it? It was too clunky in places… too long in others…
I managed to pull together a very primitive book. Using a photo-book template online I scanned my illustrations and uploaded them and added the words in text boxes. I sent my ‘book’ to a handful of publishers – mainly those with a slant toward the production of educational resources. Whilst each reply came without an offer of publication they all (all but one, which practically demanded: “how very dare you send me this tat?!”) were extremely complimentary and encouraging. The reasons for not selecting it for publication ranged from:
‘Unfortunately, we are a small publishing house and as such, we do not accept unsolicited manuscripts’
‘We feel we would not be able to do it justice’
‘It is a difficult time for publishing at the moment many publishing companies of our size have closed down. So we have to be really selective of publishing resources that complement our existing books and ranges. We are afraid we can’t publish your book as it does not fit into our range, as we do not usually publish stories’
I had more or less settled for the fact that I had written the book to tick a box on my bucket list and having it published wasn’t a prerequisite and it certainly wasn’t written for financial gain. Both would‘ve been a bonus of course! However I really shouldn’t waste any more time on it. But lo and behold, BNBS WAS interested and suddenly my life was catapulted into a whirlwind of excitement, creativity, social media, self-promotion, twittersphere, blogging, the local press, PUBLICATION and soon a Sky TV chat show! Who would’ve thought?!
The last 12 or so weeks have been ridiculously wonderful – crazy, but wonderful. And now as my pre-order window is drawing to a close I am reflecting on this time of my life, a time that I will never experience again. I’ve discovered I can do more than I ever thought possible – in one day alone I lurched between a telephone interview about my book, to making a home for a pet cloud with my daughter, to domestic chores, to mediating a longstanding workplace dispute, back to domestic goddess, to securing a publishing deal. I am truly grateful to my supporters who have pre-ordered and have been dedicated to helping spread the word, you know who you are! Thank you. I also appreciate all the hard work BNBS has put in to help me in my mission: your endless support and guidance, allowing me to tap into your experience and expertise whenever necessary.
Who knows what the next chapter of my ‘author life’ holds at the end of the pre-order campaign… I can’t wait to find out!
There are now only 6 days left now to pre-order, this is the only way to have your name, or your child’s, printed inside! Please visit: https://britainsnextbestseller.co.uk/index.php/book/index/WormSlugMaggotandLeech
And, the official book launch date is 12th September! Woohoo!!
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