Monday 23 February 2015

New Beginnings

Today for me the start of a new week also means the start of a new story. I always get really excited about starting a new WIP (work in progress). I babble about the story to anyone who will listen, I run key scenes in my mind when I'm walking the dog or taking a bath and then I suddenly disappear...

When I'm writing a story I delve right into it. I stop talking about it and just it I guess. It can be quite consuming but I love it, especially when it's a story I'm crazy excited about. But as the excitement wears off I feel bad for all the other ideas I've brushed aside in honor of this current one. I saw a writer on Twitter talking about how each time she publishes a book she breathes a sigh of relief as it's another story out there because she fears she might not live long enough to write all the stories within her.

And as morbid as that is I totally relate to that. I have a growing list of stories I just have to write. Until they are all down I'll keep having this gnawing emptiness within me, this incessant need to just keep writing. Because writing isn't a choice, its an involuntary impulse like breathing. Both are equally essential to my well being. I know, I know I sound like I'm being WAY overly dramatic but I'm truly not. When I look back at the unhappiest moments in my life they are always the times when I've not been writing. Writing keeps me sane, it keeps me happy.

I just hope that one day I do get to write all of the books residing within me. With each new start to a story I'm one step closer to completing my literary bucket list!

So here's to a new week, a new story and numerous new chapters!


Tuesday 10 February 2015

Extract from Dare to Dream

I'm really excited because the ebook of Dare to Dream is released a week today! Woo! In honour of the impending release I wanted to share an extract of the story on my blog today. 
The lead character in the story, Maggie Trafford, is very much an outsider and even invisible in the chaos of our own home. In the Trafford household, her siblings choose any moment to be disruptive, even dinner time...

Meal times were perhaps the most chaotic moments of all. The family were forced to cramp six seats around a table meant for only four, which meant that an awful lot of pushing and shoving occurred. Maggie would have been much happier eating her dinner alone upstairs, but her mother insisted on them all dining together in an ill-judged attempt at creating some family unity. The boys were always first to the table and would wolf down their food as if they hadn’t eaten in weeks. The girls talked as much as they ate, which meant that they took longer. Their mother always began by attempting polite small talk, asking each of them how their day had been, but it always somehow managed to erupt into a huge argument and dinner would end with people leaving the table angrily, followed by a succession of slamming doors. Once, Jack had punched Kyle over a dispute at school that they had not managed to settle during the day. Their mother had cried that night.
This mealtime played out like all the ones before it: this time it was Catherine and April who were having a heated exchange over their spaghetti bolognaise. The argument reached a head when Catherine called April a slut, to which April’s reply was to throw the remainder of her dinner over her sister’s head. It was a typical dinner in the Trafford household. Maggie began cleaning away the dishes whilst her mother wiped clean a sobbing Catherine. April, not wanting to be disciplined, had slunk off during the chaos to her friend’s house across the street. It was unlikely that she would return that night.

With dinner having drawn to a dramatic conclusion, the family had dispersed for the evening. Catherine was with their mother in the small living room watching the soaps, while Jack and Kyle had gone out to meet friends and play soccer, which seemed dubious considering how cold and dark it was. Maggie was pretty certain that they had gone somewhere with much less noble intentions, probably to drink cheap cider and smoke cigarettes, but she had learnt what happened when she told of their plans and so she kept quiet. Now that the house was relatively empty, she could at last relax and begin to unwind after a hectic day. Maggie chose to have a bath: it was one of her favorite things to do. She loved nothing more than to lie amongst the warm bubbles and let her mind wander. It offered her a rare chance to be alone and was more often than not the highlight of her day.

To win a signed paperback copy of Dare to Dream head over to Goodreads

Tuesday 3 February 2015

Meet Dawn Brady

Since it's #TeaserTuesday I thought I'd put the spotlight on one of the main characters in Dare to Dream; Dawn Brady. Dawn is Maggie's fiercely loyal best friend who proves that she's more than just a pretty blonde. So I'll let Dawn do something she's pretty good at, which is talking about herself...

Hi, okay, so I'm Dawn Brady. You have probably already heard of me. I'm fourteen and I go to Bainbridge Wells High which is just a dump. I think there are prisons which are nicer than my crappy school! But it's not all bad. Mags is there. 

Mags, Maggie, is my BFF and I love her to bits. She's seriously the smartest person I've ever met! We do pretty much everything together. Maggie even watches my Hartford's Place DVDs with me even though I can tell she doesn't like it since she can never keep track of who is dating who. But I LOVE Hartford's Place it is like, the best show ever! I wish my school was more like Hartford High, full of hot guys with great suntans and ripped abs...

What else is there to say? Umm. Well si My favorite flavor ice cream is cherry, I never leave home without my lip gloss and my inhaler and I can just about wrap my leg around my head. It's pretty much the only thing I picked up when my Mum used to make me take gymnastics lessons. I don't really do sports. Sweating is just...urgh. Wrong. 

I can't wait to leave Bainbridge. As soon as school finishes I'm getting the hell out of there and I'm taking Maggie with me! Though I'm pretty sure she's destined to go to some hot shot university like Oxford or Cambridge. So maybe I'd follow her to London, I don't know. What I do know is that Mags is my best friend, without her life would totally suck. She makes me laugh and actually listens to me. I'd follow Mags to the ends of the earth if she asked me because that's what best friends do. 


Want to read more about Dawn and Maggie? Well you don't have to wait long as Dare to Dream is officially being released on 17th February! That's just a few weeks away! Until then make sure you add Dare to Dream on goodreads are there will be some exciting competitions being announced on there shortly!