We’ve all heard of it. That dreaded, awful thing that keeps us writers awake at night, biting down our nails and staring into blank screens. Writer’s Block. *shudder*

I’ll admit, I kinda wondered what the fuss was about. Was it even really real? Well, yes. I can confirm that it is real, and it sucks. Book Three has always been a bit of a pressure cooker for me. For some reason, in my mind, it sticks out as the book that defines your career. If you can write three good books that sell, then you’re well on your way. Talk about pressure!

For me, the dreaded WB didn’t come at the start. In fact, I was plodding along rather nicely. Until I got to a point where I just didn’t know how to proceed. At first I thought it was a research thing, so I turned to that age old writer’s best friend: Procrastination. I literally spent hours online, delving into the deepest corners of the internet, canvassing friends who could help, and so on. And the hump was jumped, a little. Until I came to the next one. Then I decided that I didn’t like one of the characters. They were a bit…useless. Not pulling their weight. They had to go. And so I deleted them, rewriting half the story in the process. Another hump jumped. And then came the next.

And it just. wouldn’t. move.

I’d got myself into a nice rhythm, sitting in my local cafe for hours and writing. My word count was rising. And suddenly I found myself unable to write another single word. What if that was it? What if my writing career was over already?

What was the problem? Was it that the book was already far too long and only half way through? Was it that the story was moving too slowly? Was it that I didn’t like yet another character? It was all these things and more. I had no official deadline but, as we all know, we need something called money to live and to get money I need to write a book…and so on. I spent days – literally whole days – talking about the plot, thinking about the plot, re-plotting and doing even more re-plotting. It all lead nowhere. For the first time ever, I just had no more words to write and I felt like I was driving myself nuts with it. And so, I made a big decision. I decided to scrap it. 60,000 words – gone. Instead, something else took its place. A kernel of an idea, talked through with my partner to flesh it out a little, and then I went and sat by myself and wrote out a plot.

Luckily for me, I have a fantastic agent, and when I called him for advice, he was right behind me. He advised me to take two weeks off and give my brain a rest. Those two weeks are almost up and, guess what? I cannot WAIT to get writing again. I know these characters so much more than I think I’ve ever known any of my characters before. I know the plot. I can smell the air they’re breathing in and I’m itching to get on with it. I’ve got three days left until my ‘holiday’ is over and it means I can finish some of the other projects I’ve got going on in my life. So, what’s going to happen with the 60,000 word project I stopped? Well, I’ve parked it. I really hope that it’ll get finished, one day. It’s an important story that I think needs to be told, but maybe right now isn’t the time to do it.

Being a writer is hard. Really hard. It’s solitary and nobody can help to make sense of the things going on in your head, no matter how much you talk it out. I’m lucky I’ve got fans who simply say ‘I want to read your next book but take your time’ when they ask when it’ll come out and I can only tell them ‘at some point in the next year.’ I’m lucky I have fabulous writer friends who are there to listen. I’m lucky I’ve stopped taking so much notice of other writers who seem to drop an intimidatingly high word count every day because it simply does not matter.

I’ve come to realise that writing is like a living, breathing thing. It can’t be controlled. And all the will in the world won’t make the words come out if they’re not meant to be spoken.

 

 

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First of all, I have to say a huge thank you to the lovely Jade at We Heart Writing for reaching out to ask for a contribution to their website. Follow the link to find out my tips on how to write awesome characters!

Last week, something amazon happened. Last week, I went to a book launch party (I’ve never been to one before, so that in itself was pretty cool), but what’s more, it was a launch for Love You Better!

What was even more bonkers, was that it was sitting at #2 on Amazon that day. C-r-a-z-y! I’m sure I’m not the only writer out there who’s fantasised about a launch party. It’s a celebration of all those hours of self-doubt and hard work, and sharing with friends. It was all of those things, and even though it was more of a PR do than a ‘book launch’, I was super blessed to have been able to celebrate it with my lovely German boyfriend and an old time friend of mine.

It was held at Drink, Shop & Do, a cute little place on Caledonian Road. It straddles being a cocktail bar with a crafts centre, and while I can’t vouch for the crafts, believe me when I say the Lychee and Gin cocktails were superb! I had a great night chatting with the journo’s who’d turned up, as well as spending some much needed face time with my publishing team. It was a night I’ll never forget, and no matter what happens with my writing career following LYB (and I admit I am BRICKING IT!), this will definitely, definitely be one of the highlights 🙂

xx

Today is kind of surreal. It’s the day I never really imagined would happen when I was writing Together Apart. At best, I hoped to get a few sales – maybe enough to buy a new pair of shoes at the end of the year. Instead, I’m now finding myself celebrating the day it’s being re-released by an actual publisher. And not just any publisher, but one of the biggest names out there.

omg1

To say it’s beyond cool is an understatement, really and I’m going to celebrate with a ginormous mojito 🙂 Thanks to everyone who’s supported me so far. Today is simply a dream come true!

Oh, and here’s some info about the book (duh!) 😉

TogetherApart.v3WEB (1)

When Adam proposes to Sarah, the last thing he expects is to be single and heartbroken less than forty-eight hours later. But Sarah has a secret, and she’s willing to sacrifice everything to keep it.

Going through a break-up is hard enough but having to live together afterwards is even worse, especially when it’s a break-up neither person wants. For Adam, only ways to deal with it are drinking and partying. For Sarah, it’s keeping her distance and her secrets.

Against a backdrop of lies, betrayals and passion, the delicate threads holding Sarah’s secret begin to unravel when her past and present collide.

Romantic, intense and heartbreaking, Together Apart explores what it really means to love and be loved.

Hmmmmm. So they say you should write what you know. Well, I’ve taken some inspiration (it’s most definitely not all real) and my new short story this summer will be about two backpackers who meet in Ibiza over the course of one week. Here are the main characters…more info to come soon!

Selina Bio

Alex Bio