It’s a lot. I still don’t feel ready to write about it.
But here’s the thing: I showed my manuscript to a publisher and they’ve offered me a book deal!
It’s going to be a book! It’s going to be in shops!
Nup. Still can’t get my head around it.
I was in the middle of a wedding rehearsal when I found out. It seemed wrong to shriek the news out across the church when I probably shouldn’t have been looking at my phone in the first place. When I got home, Christopher (who is now 14) had made a delicious lasagne, but had only just put it in the oven. He is an excellent cook, but sometimes struggles with the project-management side of things (it was 7:45pm). The younger children were hyper-hangry and fighting. I had a brief moment of joyful glee with my husband, before he had to sign in to two Zoom meetings at once (I don’t know how that works either).
It was only after I warmed up plates of lasagne for the kids, only after I got them ready for bed, only after I drove to McDonalds to pick up Matilda from her job, only after I gave her a driving lesson home, only after I got my own slice of lasagne from the oven and put it on a plate that I was able to grapple with the idea.
“Dammit.” I said, and dug around in the fridge drawer for a bottle of Prosecco that was on special at Liquorland the week before. I popped the cork and grimly poured myself a glass. Then I looked at the glass. It’s been almost five years. It’s been longer if you count the time writing for my blog. All of the snatched sessions writing in cafes and libraries and in the car (like I am right now). I try to summon up some kind of response. I’m going to be published.
Then my husband came out of his meetings and we watched an episode of Ted Lasso together.
The next day, I had a couple of people over and was berating myself as I company-cleaned for the first time in many months. I am not kind to myself in these situations. My internal monologue goes like this: “How did you let things get this bad?” “What is wrong with you?” “Look at that mess!” “You are a FAILURE!” But I stopped for a moment as I tipped out filthy mop water. I may be a domestic failure, but I DID just sell my novel!
Since then, I’ve managed to feel joy through other people’s reaction to the news. The idea of being published is like a small smiling thought, warming me from the inside. And now I’m telling you, and it feels like the biggest thing. Because you’re my reader community, my biggest supporters from the start. It’s too big. I don’t have words. I didn’t plan it, but it turns out today is my blog’s nine year anniversary! Thank you for everything. I would never have done it without your support.
I can’t WAIT to show you the novel!