My best and worst year as an author

When I was fifty-five a doctor told me that I was dying. Everyone is dying but my personal timescale had moved up. Instead of my encounter with Death being in the far future it was within three years.

Top of my bucket list was getting one of my stories published. I chose Cast Adrift, the first book in my Arcana series. There was no time go into battle with agents and publishers. There was no time to learn the skills to publish Cast Adrift myself. Instead I went looking for a self-publishing company.

I chose the one that promised much, including working to my accelerated schedule. Cast Adrift was published in May 2015.

I had a Methodist grandfather and went to Roman Catholic schools. The Roman Catholic child inside me struggles to comprehend that people often promise far more than they can deliver. My Methodist attitude means I resent having paid for the promises rather than the reality.

So now I am fifty-six and, weirdly, that scheduled encounter with Death has moved further away. I turned out to be in the fifteen per cent for whom a new treatment worked.

Imagine. You are throwing a die. You need a six. If you throw a six you may live rather than die.

I threw a six. Now I have a fifty per cent chance of living another ten years.

So where am I as an author? Cast Adrift and Foothold are published. They aren’t perfect but they are out there. Unfortunately very few potential readers know about them. I am working on that.

I have finished the manuscript for Homeward. It should be available later this year, probably in the early summer.

It’s been quite a year.