Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Happy 3rd birthday lovely blog!

It shows how crazy the last few weeks have been that after remembering it was my blog's third birthday on Friday 13th June, I promptly forgot again on the actual day! So last Friday I should have posted something but I didn't. So I am going to now!

When I started this blog three years ago I was writing it solely for myself and so I could take part in ROW80 and post my progress. Now it is the place where I was able to share the news that I was joint winner of the Sunlounger 2 short story competition and post this beautiful front cover!

Sunlounger 2 is out this Saturday (21st June) and is packed full of stories from writers I love and admire. I so hope you will buy it and enjoy being whisked off to exotic climes and I look forward to hearing everyone's thoughts on my story 'In Bruges.' I really am excited people will read it but I am also quite scared!! 

It has been such an exciting time and I changed my twitter name from @emwantstowrite to @EmIsWriting. People have suggested it many times but I have held off thinking that I am a bit of a fraud since I have lots of times I doubt myself and freeze with my writing. But I feel so fresh and motivated with my writing even though the day job is getting in the way at the moment. I was thinking earlier that it is a shame there isn't a CampNaNo this summer so I might think about having my own little camp! Someone needs to remind me off that comment in July!

So this is just a little nod to my blog's birthday and also a shameless promotion for Sunlounger 2. I am so happy and proud to be part of it! I wanted to post this picture of me and my friends on the day I found out I was joint winner of the competition. I love it because we were happy, had had champagne and cake, the sun was shining and I felt on top of the world!! (ps. I am second from the right, rocking the Deirdre Barlow shades! Actually, most of us are!)

So remember, 21st June Sunlounger 2. It will make your summer!!!


Saturday, 7 June 2014

The Saturday after the Saturday before

I have been very reflective this week and I was lying in bed last night thinking about how different I feel from a week ago. This time last week I had just found out I was joint winner of the Sunlounger 2 competition. I probably had a glass of champagne in my hand right at this moment last week. I think it is fair to say that this time last week I was in a daze. It seemed to only really sink in a few days later that I had actually won. I had won a writing competition. It is simply amazing.

Because I shared the competition results on my Facebook, some people at work now know about my writing. I cannot tell you how strange it is to talk openly about how long I have been writing, what I am writing and how my writing it going. It wasn't that I thought people would laugh or ridicule my dream to be a writer, it was more I was scared if I told people and it came to nothing then I would have to admit I gave up on my dream. If does feel quite pressured to have people asking how often I write or how much I have written that week but actually some friendly pressure will be good for me. I know I am more productive when I am accountable so now people in my day to day life know about my writing, it can only be a good thing.

I do feel different in myself. I think about writing and I feel excitement because I do now feel so much more confident in myself. Don't get me wrong, there will be times I will doubt myself and I'll feel every word is pure rubbish on the page. But I just feel like I need to keep plodding on, plotting and writing and editing and see where it takes me.

I have met some lovely new people including my fellow Sunlounger winner Ella Fairlie who was also a secret writer outed by her win. The writing community on twitter has always been amazing but I am so thankful my circle of writer and book blogger friends has grown on there. I am so excited (and a little nervous!) to hear what everyone thinks of my story when Sunlounger 2 is published on the 21st of June!

June is going to be such an exciting month with the ebook release and it is my third blog birthday on the 13th of June! My poor blog has been through a lot, from the highs of NaNoWriMo to the lows of self-doubt but I hope to be a bit more regular posting on here. It is possibly going to be a bit of a shocking month for my writing though. In the world of us teachers it is report writing time. Reports are always a killer as to do them well takes hours and hours but none of the usual work that keeps you busy most of the time stops. I looked at a couple earlier and they average 1,200 words to 1,300 words per child and I have 26 children in my class. By my maths, that is over 30k of writing but alas, not on my WIP! So I am going to focus on getting them written and enjoying the ride of Sunlounger 2 being published and not beat myself up if I don't make headway with my WIP until July. CampNaNoWriMo is running again in July so that might be a possibility if I am feeling brave!

Speaking of reports, I better go and do some!
Have lovely Saturdays,

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Sunlounger 2!

This weekend has been the best weekend of my writing life. If you follow me on twitter you will know that I was actually joint winner of the Sunlounger Short Story Competition !!!! This means that on the 21st of June I will be published in an ebook with some seriously amazing writers. I apologise for all the promotional tweets that I will no doubt be tweeting but I AM BEING PUBLISHED!!!

I have almost pinched myself black and blue but I think it is starting to sink in. One of my best friends Lisa Dickenson is also in the book and she has also written the sweetest blog post about telling me that I had won! I was travelling in a car with some friends to go and see Lisa and I had seen on facebook that I was in the top ten of the competition. I however didn't check my phone (scared much?!) to see that I made the top four and then was announced joint winner! Lisa's post just sums up the moment to perfection and I truly appreciate her support and constant encouragement.

This did mean I was thrust somewhat into the spotlight. Amongst all the hugging and me repeatedly saying 'are you serious?' our friends stood there saying 'what's going on? what's she done?' because they didn't even know I write. When they huddled together to read my first paragraph on facebook I was slightly mortified and excused myself to go and ring my fiance. It suddenly became real. People would know who I am and people in my life would know I write. I have never entered anything before so the idea of winning didn't actually enter my mind. I didn't think of the consequences and suddenly I felt exposed. When my friend's were reading my paragraph I seem to remember saying I felt like I was giving birth on facebook. I hope that makes sense to anyone who has shared their writing with someone for the first time!

The lovely Lauren Garafalo calls me a Secret Agent because I am so secretive about my identity and my writing. I have known her for nearly three years and I have sent her one secret and never to be shared picture of myself. My family kind of know I have written stuff in the past as I told them when I took part in NaNoWriMo for the first time but nothing since then.

But now I am out. And quite happy about it! Everyone has been so supportive that I kind of don't know why I never said before. But I guess revealing that you have won a competition is easier than admitting you spend your time writing things you never let anyone read. And to prove I am out and proud here is a photo of me and my girls, drinking champagne and toasting all the wonderful things that are happening in our lives. I'm the second one from the right with the long blonde hair and the slightly bewildered expression.

I'll keep you updated about all things Sunlounger and will get back to ROW80 asap. Thank you to everyone for all your congratulations and support. It has been amazing!