Two sleeps to publication as I write this and I’m taken back to the swimming races of my youth. Like a swimmer limbering up before being called to the starting block, I’m trying not to let the jitters get the better of me. I remind myself of the good shape my book is in, the preparation and hours of hard work that has gone into it writing it, the fantastic team I am part of, and my wonderful friends and family who are cheering me on.
Becoming a published author has been nothing short of a rollercoaster, but I consider myself incredibly lucky to have made the journey with Hachette. Like top coaches, their editors can see the kinks where scenes don’t work, the storylines or plot points that just underperform. They’ve talked me through the shortcomings of my manuscript and challenged me to improve. I’ve stepped up, written out of my skin.
One last shake of the arms and I pull my goggles down. A giant step and I’m on that starting block. I crouch low, take my mark. This is it. On Tuesday, July 25th, all the training and preparation will be put to the test. My novel will hit the Australian and New Zealand book market and find itself in the company of some wonderful writers many of whom I have long admired. It’s a big pool and only the best will be placed. But I’ll be in there, stroking hard, taking my readers with me at every turn. When they reach the last page and read to the end, I’ll be hitting the touchpad, looking up at the scoreboard. I’ve never been interested so much in winning as in taking part and giving it my best shot. I can only hope that readers share in the exhilaration of what has been this incredible journey of Leaving Ocean Road.
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Lá fhéile Pádraig sona dhuit! Or, Happy St Patrick's Day. We're taking a trip with one of our wonderful Irish author's Esther Campion to 5 great Irish pubs where you can get a drink to celebrate the day!