Agent Land, at last? Oh, I think so…

Hello!

I know it’s been a while, but there’s a very good reason for this… last year, whilst querying my YA novel Chimera, I managed to snag myself and actual, proper AGENT! So since then, I have been beavering away editing and doing all the stuff I had no idea you did when an agent says that magic word: YES.

 

Watch this space… 😉

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Yes, I’m fat. Yes, I’m running. GET OVER IT.

I have a question for you.

I you saw someone trying to make some positive life choices, even though they’re hard to do and they’ve had to overcome some pretty big personal issues to do them, what would you do?

a) Encourage them.

b) Leave them alone – after all, they’re not hurting anyone.

c) Cat call them / shout at them in the street / mutter nasty comments at them as they go by?

If the answer is ‘c’ – congratulations! You’re one of the wankers who likes to pass judgement on me when I go on my morning run. Pat yourself on the back, because you really are quite special.

A bit of background. I’m a big girl. I know I’m a big girl. I’m not huge – a UK size 16-18 – but I don’t kid myself; that’s still bigger than I should be. Lots and lots of people – mostly strangers – like to remind me of this. This is why I don’t do selfies. Hell, I don’t do photos at all if I can help it. I’d much rather have a cartoon representing me than, you know, actually me.

This year, though, I decided I wasn’t going to let the fear of Other People’s Opinions stop me from doing something I wanted to do. I’m also going to be a bridesmaid at the end of May, and that means I won’t be able to avoid the dreaded camera, so I thought ‘to hell with this – I need to do something drastic’.

So I started running.

Literally. One day, I put on my trainers, got an old pair of decorating trousers out of my wardrobe, found an old band shirt, bought a sports bra and ran round the park. Well, not so much ran as ‘ran a few steps, struggled to breath, walked a bit, tried to run a bit more, thought God, whose stupid idea was this?, waked a bit, ran a bit more and then went home’. It wasn’t a huge success, but hell, I’d tried and survived, so I decided to do it again. And again. And again.

After about 5 sessions, I could get round the park without walking, which was a huge boost. Then over the next 2 weeks, I got up to 3 times round the park. After that, I decided to go off piste, and have started running around my estate, going where my feet take me. I can now run, without walking, for about 15-20 minutes. When I started at the end of February, I couldn’t make two minutes.

Now this is all very nice and encouraging – my anxiety is better, I feel more energised, I feel more inspired to write when I come home – but it comes with a downside. Yep, that’s right – other people.

Other runners tend to be fine. If I come across them (they are invariably svelte, lycra-clad paragons of fitness), they often give me a little smile, or a thumbs-up. I appreciate this. I may be six times their size, plodding a long at a pace they could probably walk at, but I like to think that they’ve recognised that everyone has to start somewhere and at least I’m trying. Most other people, to be honest, just ignore me. That’s fine, too. I like that. When I’m doing something that makes my flabby bits wobble and breathe like an angry dragon, I am more than happy for people to ignore me. But some people… some people feel the need to say something. It might be muttered as I jog past – or in the case of the lad riding his moped this morning (oh, the irony!) – yelled as loudly as possible. A few examples: ‘Look at the state of it’. ‘Jeeeeesus…’. ‘God sake’. And my favourite from this morning (and what inspired this blog): ‘WELL. RUN THEN, FAT BITCH!’

Well, run then, fat bitch.

Said by someone riding a moped.

I don’t know why people feel the need to do this. Think it, sure, but yell it? Why? What does it gain you? A feeling of superiority? I know fat-shaming is the new black, but I also thought the ‘eat less, move more FATTY!’ brigade would be all for seeing an overweight person trying their best to actually do something about it. But no… they’d rather yell spiteful things at someone minding their own business, hurting no-one at all.

I know I might be setting myself up for a shit load of backlash for this (fat girl trying to better herself – quick! Join the queue!), but I’m fed up of it. I’m not going to stop running. I’ve actually discovered that I like it. I now go 4-5 times a week, out of choice. So, wankers, you can shout yourself hoarse for all I care. I’ve got my swearing fingers out, ready to give you a big ‘fuck you’.

Saying that, if you ever are in Pompey and you see a short, round, ginger woman in bright blue trainers wearing a NIN band shirt looking incredibly pink pounding the streets with a big grin on her face, feel free to wave. 🙂

Nine Eyes is currently 99p/99c… but be quick!!

My newest novel, Nine Eyes, is currently on a Kindle deal for 99p/99c!

NINE EYES UK LINK

NINE EYES US LINK

Get it while you can!

9eyes

Welcome To Sinner’s Wake…
When a group of five documentary film makers go to the Highlands of Scotland to investigate the legendary Bèist an t-Sluic – the Beast of the Hollow – they think they’re made. A drowned church, tales of a water demon that inhabits it, rumours of human sacrifice… it’s almost too good to be true.
It doesn’t take them too long to realise that it is. Because the God of Nine Eyes is waiting.
And it is hungry.

The Fear (Or How I Can’t Stop Worrying and Love Publishing)

It’s that time, folks.

Time for a new book.

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(With any luck, a couple of people reading this might be feeling something that approximates this)

And with it, comes dun dun duuuuuuuun… THE FEAR

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This is me. Second book jitters have now bedded in, and the thought of letting this new book out to gambol amongst the daffodils is making me feel rather ill. Mainly because if you looked up a definition of ‘Neurotic’ in the dictionary, you’d find a picture of me (or at least a cartoon of me, because I don’t like having my photo taken… which makes me sound *even more neurotic*, if that was ever possible), but also because Second Book Syndrome is a Thing and whilst I ended up enjoying writing it enormously (come on, it has lake monster legends AND occult weirdiness AND life is pointless, so why bother in it… seriously, it’s one shoggoth short of everything I love to write about), the Fear of Being Judged is raising its ugly head yet again. One of these days I’m hoping I might be able to do this with pride rather than with a sinking feeling, but until then, goodbye innocent scribbling, hello fretting.

What makes this even more stupid is Predator X was, dare I say it, a success. Oh, sure, not everyone liked it (some even hated it with a fervour I’m not sure if I should fear or be proud of), but it did reach number 1 in the horror charts on Amazon.com (number 6 in the UK), I was the 4th best selling horror author for a day (I have screenshots to prove it!) and it has just made the Preliminary Ballot of the Stoker Awards (yeah… I probably should have written a blog post about that, but I was so overwhelmed by it all I had a massive brain fart and didn’t) – I’ll find out soon if it’s made it to the shortlist. But that also makes it very hard, too. One of my biggest fears (apart from absolutely everyone hating it) is that the people who liked Pred X won’t like this one (and it’s bound to happen, because it just is), and in that, I’ve let them down.

So, before I write my ‘official’ page about the new book, here it is: I hope you like it. And if you don’t, I didn’t deliberately set out to write something you don’t like. Oh, and it’s called Sinner’s Wake (it was Canter’s Leap, but I changed it. I like this title more. I think it fits better 🙂 ) and it’s about a bunch of documentary filmmakers investigating the legend of lake monster in a loch near a little Scottish village called Duisg a’ Pheacaich (which roughly translates as Sinner’s Wake), the home town of their cameraman, a man called Brandon Decker, who left after his father died when he was 7.

So… yeah. That’s it. Sinner’s Wake, out soon.

Very soon.

Anyone got any wine?!

Heart Over Hurt

So much truth here… must remember this next time the doubts raise their ugly heads 😉

Jody Klaire

That title pretty much sums up a lot of the human qualities that draw us to each other. It’s funny how anyone who doesn’t appear ‘human enough’ is often seen as cold, indifferent, arrogant or ignorant. Either this extreme sense of isolation or even the opposite when some is elaborately expressive seems to cause negative reactions that fascinate me.
With elite sports people seems to come an in built belief that carries an amount of arrogance. I would guess it’s essential to believe they are better in order to mentally drive them to become a champion. A fire and an intensity that lights up their eyes, makes them stutter, shake, doubt but ultimately drives them to conquer. When I watch a sportsperson, I am always fascinated by their eyes. The highly successful ones seem to possess a steely passion in their eyes that sets them apart.
In a sense, I…

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