Blog Update and ROW80 Check-In 10

Hello gentle reader,

I hope you had a lovely week!

If you’re here to enter my Best Book Ever Giveaway and have a chance to win The Gathering Dark by Leigh Bardugo, click on the image below (giveaway ends tomorrow):

Best Book Ever Giveaway

If you’re here for my ROW80 Check-In, know that I spent my week running like a headless chicken for my crazy day job. Therefore I didn’t do any writing, I barely did any editing and I only did a bit of reading.

ROW80 LogoPlease note this is my last check-in for this round (although this round won’t be over until 20th June).

Indeed I have decided to join a summer challenge called Ready. Set. Write!


Hosted by Alison MillerKaty Upperman, Erin Funk, Jaime Morrow and Elodie Nowodazkij, it’s a summer writing intensive that starts Tuesday 11th June and will go on for 2 months. The idea is to update weekly on Wednesdays on what we’ve been writing and on our new goals for the week.

Sunday Giveaway

Finally and starting this week as well, I’ll be hosting a giveaway each Sunday. I will give you the opportunity to win one e-copy of a YA book I’ve read this year or will be reading this summer. I borrowed this idea from the wonderful Amy Plum whom I met in Paris at the SCBWI Conference in March.

So that’s what will happen on my blog until 15th August!

I wish you all a great summer and hope to read your comments below.

Let me know how your week was and what you have planned for the summer!

In the meantime, happy reading, and happy writing!

Guest post on Sydney Aaliyah’s blog

Hello gentle reader,

If you follow me on Twitter, you know I am in Paris for the SCBWI Euro Conference until Sunday. In the meantime, you can read a guest post written by yours truly on Sydney Aaliyah’s blog. For her one year blogiversary, Sydney asked me “Why do you blog?” and you can read my answer here.

Happy Easter everyone!

2012 : My Writing Year In Retrospect

Hello gentle reader,

I have been writing for 15 years but to me 2012 was the year I became a writer. Here is how it happened…

January: I am sitting on top of a pile of unpublished manuscripts in a castle in England, when my friends and family unwittingly suggest “Why don’t you try and get one of those published?” and I say, well, why not?

Downton Abbey - Dowager Countess

February: I read several books about getting published. I have a hunch this won’t be easy. I decide on focusing on my YA High Fantasy THE LAST QUEEN.


March: I start my blog. To my surprise, people other than my father follow it.


April: I attend the London Book Fair. I realise there are many would-be-published writers out there and this “get a book published” endeavour might not be as easy as I thought. I decide nothing can stop me now. I start the “A Round of Words in 80 Days” writing challenge.


May: I send a query to 3 agents, get 1 request, then a final rejection. I decide it’s time I take this vampire writing thing seriously.


June: I join in JuNoWriMo (June Novel Writing Month) and find out writing a book in a month is not for me. I decide this sort of challenge can’t be for everyone.


July: I take part in the Hookers and Hangers Blogfest (hosted by Falling For Fiction) and I post the first and last lines of THE LAST QUEEN on my blog. I get good feedback as well as a record number of comments, and I connect with many awesome people.


August: 3 words: Write On Con. More critiques, more awesome people, more connections, more motivation.


September: my blog is 6 months old and for some reason it is taking off.


October: with the help of some wonderful CPs and beta readers (especially Aimee L. Salter and Jessica Montgomery) I revise THE LAST QUEEN in depth. I have conversations with people about my MC Elian as if he were a real person. He thinks it’s odd too.

Pillars of the Earth - Eddie Redmayne

November: I start querying THE LAST QUEEN, for good this time. I send out ten queries and get a full request within one week.


December: everyone is on holidays, including the agents I queried. I am sitting in a castle in England and working on a new manuscript. I have writerly friends on Twitter, Facebook, There And Draft Again, and my blog. Life is good.

Gosford Park Elsie

That’s it for me in 2012! How was your year? Leave me a comment below and have a fun New Year’s Eve tonight!

See you next year…