Friday, 27 April 2012

A Day in the Life of an Author - Guest blog by Jane Isaac

I am honoured and very excited to present this guest blog by the incredibly talented Jane Isaac, author of 'An Unfamiliar Murder'. A novel I urge you to buy if you enjoy exciting thrillers that leave you guessing until the last page.  She has posted her website url so please be sure you visit and if you are so inclined leave a comment on her blog. Thank you Jane for allowing me to feature you here.

First, I would like to thank the wonderfully talented Bernadette Davies for inviting me to grace her blog presence. I have been a huge plan of her blog, stories and poetry forever, and feel honoured and humbled to accept the invitation.

A Day in the Life of an Author

I can still feel the bounce in my stomach the day I received the email offering me a contract for my debut novel, An Unfamiliar Murder. I still pinch myself to believe that it is all true. I’d dreamed of the day I would get published, the day I would see my book on the shelf in Waterstones, receive feedback, reviews, do book signings...

Book promotion is an ongoing basis and something I’ve had to fit into my already hectic daily schedule. Once I’ve bundled my daughter off to school in the mornings I spend half an hour on the computer dealing with emails, answering messages, tweets etc. Then it’s off to the day job for me. (Like many new writers I squeeze my writing into my marginal time.) I usually return around three and run around the field with my incredibly naughty, but wonderfully lovable Labrador, Bollo. Then, back onto the PC to catch up again with social media, whilst welcoming my daughter in from school and cooking the dinner, occasionally to disastrous results (luckily my guys are very easy going)!
The evening time is when I start to think about the real love of my life: my fiction. A few evenings a week, around 8pm, I sit at the PC for an hour or two, gather my thoughts, and spend some time either researching, editing, or writing a new stretch. I don’t give myself a daily word count – if I manage 1000 words it’s a bonus – but prefer to write in scenes. Depending on their complexity I can research for hours, days, sometimes weeks before I am ready to get the words on the page.

For me, one of the most interesting elements of novel writing is research and it’s incredible what direction that can take. Most recently, I had a meeting with a former Murder Detective, watched several episodes of Top Gear, and listened to rap music on YouTube; all in pursuit of my goal!

It may seem that I don’t have much time to write, but my characters are never far from my mind and often in the supermarket queue, or by the pool during my daughter’s swim class, I’m jotting down notes that will later form some prose in my next novel, the sequel to An Unfamiliar Murder.

One of the wonderful things about becoming an author and sharing your work are the lovely messages you receive from readers through Face book, email, Twitter, telling you how much they enjoyed your book. They still both surprise and thrill me, and I’m so touched that people have taken the time to get in touch that I like to respond to them all individually.

The day my books landed in Waterstones, Kettering was a very exciting moment for me. Seeing my book sit on the shelf above one of my favourite crime authors, Peter James, is still an exhilarating moment, every time I visit the store. I have my first book signing there on the 26th May and am really looking forward to it.

Jane Isaac’s debut novel, An Unfamiliar Murder, was published by Rainstorm Press in February 2012. You can learn more about Jane, read her blog and an excerpt from her novel on her website at

Follow Jane on Twitter and you can also download or order her book from Amazon here: UK and USA

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Flash Fiction - Once Upon A Time Writing Contest - The tooth is out there

I did this once before and wanted to give it another bash.  Anne Meade and Susi Holliday are hosting another flash fiction competition here: Once Upon a Time Writing Contest so here is my entry at 349 words. I hope you enjoy.

The tooth is out there

‘So what you do, is put your tooth in your slipper, and leave it for the tooth fairy to come take away in the night’ Rachel explained to Matthew who had just lost his first milk tooth and was jumping up and down with excitement at the prospect of earning his first 20p.
Matthew ran upstairs and proudly put the tooth in the slipper as his mum had instructed.  Then, slipping the slipper under his bed, he made sure that Rex the dog wouldn’t steal it before the tooth fairy had a chance to collect and leave his little money treasure.

Rachel smiled to herself as she watched Matthew descend from the stairs, who was grinning to himself as if he had just completed a very serious mission.
‘Now remember Matthew, the tooth fairy wont come if you are not sleeping.’ She made sure he understood, for she knew that with all this excitement it would be hours before he finally fell asleep.
‘I think I will go to bed early tonight Mommy’ Matthew said ‘can I have my bath now?’
‘Of course’ Rachel smiled and they both headed upstairs.

At 7.30am the next morning, Rachel’s alarm clock went off and rolling over, she nudged Peter. ‘Did you remember to put 20p in Matthew’s slipper last night before you came to bed?’
‘No,’ Peter replied, ‘I thought you were doing it?’
‘Oh no!’ Rachel exclaimed and jumped out of bed hoping that with any luck he would still be sleeping.

Tiptoeing towards Matthew’s bedroom Rachel could hear him talking to himself. Dread washed over her as she realised how disappointed he would be thinking that the tooth fairy had not remembered him.
Slowly she opened the door and peered inside.
Matthew was sat giggling on the bed, happily counting out his money. Looking up and seeing Rachel he exclaimed ‘Look how much money I got Mommy!’ and he held up what seemed to amount to £1 worth of change to her.
Puzzled, Rachel opened the door all the way so Peter could also see and asked ‘Are you sure?’

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Streaking light

So my good friend Cory Eadson and I have recently started setting each other challenges.  I'm not sure if this is in poetry only, though I feel we should include short stories in this (hint hint Cory) where we give each other a topic and need to write something on it.  I challenged him first - told him to do something warm and fuzzy and he met the challenge with this: I Love You which I am sure you will have to admit is brilliant!  He in turn, told me to do something on 'Meteor Shower', and here it is

Streaking Light

Flashing over, blinking light
Streaking through the empty night
From where you come or where you go
I can truly say I do not know

A hint of promise, a hint of fate
it leaves me breathless, but yet I wait
to wish upon a shooting star
and find the perfect one by far.

And as the lights streak through the sky
I touch my face and dry my eye
and dream that I will feel the power
of hope that's promised by a meteor shower.