Happy birthday to my little blog! Ten years old today and I’m feeling quite emotional.
It’s never been a huge affair. I didn’t understand about advertising or keywords or search engine optimisation so I just blogged and published and didn’t really capitalised on the fact that I was so early to the blogging party. I simply wrote about what was going on for me in my kitchen and people read it.
I began blogging because as my youngest child started school I suddenly felt very aware that I was being left behind in terms of technology. I had four children! I needed to know at least a little of how this ‘online’ thing worked. So I dived in. You can read my very first post HERE.
Then my children got a little bigger and their friends started to read what I wrote which felt odd. When their friends started to comment on what I’d written I decided to reconsider my subject matter! By then though I was busy with other things. First I started a BA (Hons) in English Literature (here’s my POST about that) and then I began my first novel in 2010. You’ll see from my post about that HERE that I didn’t tell anyone until the project was well underway. Lack of confidence, fear of mockery, fear of failure – all that normal stuff. When it was finished though I asked my book group to read it. Listening to them discussing it as if I wasn’t even in the room was one of the most exciting and terrifying experiences of my life.
When I’d written my second novel, Beyond Belief, I decided to release it in instalments to my little community. I wanted to know if they thought it was any good and I positively encouraged criticism – and I got it!
On I went. Self publishing was a thing now but it was so complicated. My husband kept encouraging me to have a go but it wasn’t until 2015 that I plucked up enough courage to try and even then I used a pseudonym. Lucinda Fox was born.
Lots of courses and seven novels later I finally felt brave enough to publish Postcards From a Stranger. I signed up for the fantastic SPF101 course and learned what I needed to know to edit, format, get a cover, publish and market my book and on 7th June 2017 Postcards From a Stranger hit Amazon. It did well, reaching #14 in the UK Amazon kindle chart.
And then the email that changed everything. Amazon Publishing, Amazon’s own traditional publishing house, wanted to buy Postcards and my next two books and publish them for me. Postcards From a Stranger was republished on Tuesday of this week, almost 10 years exactly since I first set out on this adventure.
Do I have any regrets? A few. I should have learned more about blogging in the early days but I had four young children and I didn’t have energy or brain capacity for it. I should have been brave enough to self-publish earlier as well. Who knows where I might have been if I’d started with those early kindle writers back when the market was wide open?
But I firmly believe that you can only take these steps when you are good and ready and I didn’t reach that spot until last summer which was, as it turns out, the perfect moment.
So, now I have a blog with over 500 posts, a First Class degree in English Literature, two pen names who both sell books most days, nine novels and lots of fab friends that I met along the way. Not bad for 10 years work.
And what’s next? Well who knows. More books I hope, maybe a bestseller or two! But the most important thing to me is to keep striving. I’ve never been one for sitting still. Life is short and all that. If you have an inkling about something you’d like to do then you just have to have a go. Who knows where you might end up?
Thank you for reading this and if you’ve been with me since 12th August 2008 then thank you from the very bottom of my heart.