I haven’t been blogging much for the last eighteen months because a lot has been going on. I have written six children’s non-fiction books for six UK publishers back to back. Phew. My first book is launching in April 2023 with Walker books, closely followed by two more books in May with DK and late June with Welbeck. It’s been a steep but fun learning curve and that’s going to continue as I have to learn all about the marketing and selling part of publishing while still writing and editing more books.
The first step was creating this new website (a learning curve in itself!). As well as talking about my books, I want to share with you in this blog some of the things I have learnt along the way. It remains challenging to be published and it can be hard to identify what ‘being commercial’ is in practice.
I know well how long it can take to get published. I started writing children’s books almost ten years ago. During this time, I almost found an agent or publisher once or twice, but my story concepts never got past the first or second round – they just weren’t quite right. It was frustrating but along the way, I met a lot of supportive people and learnt so much about story-making and writing styles that it stood me in good stead today. In October 2020, I found my agent, Becky and we have been proposing and selling books ever since. I sell more than I don’t and have developed a nose for a commercial idea hiding amongst a towering stack of ideas – hence the theme of this blog – identifying which BIG idea to write and how to develop that idea into a commercial book publishers can’t say no to!
Look out for my upcoming blog posts about the new types of creative non-fiction, writing book proposals for both fact and fiction books and why you really really need to know your market. Plus there’s already stacks of information in the existing blog posts below about idea creation, storing, sorting and evaluating ideas and so much more!
I have achieved more in these last two years than I ever thought possible. So, this blog is me giving back to the children’s writing and illustration community. You have always helped me to keep my chin up and to try again and again when I really needed that boost.
Happy New Year and happy reading. Let’s see where 2023 will take us…
All the best,