A hectic few months!

I thought it was about time to give out a general news update . . . but crikey, I don’t know where to start!

At the end of October, I made the decision to quit my job at Christmas. I had reduced my hours the year before to give me more time and flexibility, but it just wasn’t enough. I was juggling too many things – the job, the almost-grown-but-still-requiring-lots-of-input-and-guidance kids, my elderly and frail parents . . . and, of course, my writing. My health and sanity were beginning to suffer, and something had to give.

As it turned out, this was rather a fortuitous decision – the week after I handed in my notice, Bookouture e-mailed me to say they wanted to publish the book I’d submitted to them a few weeks before. I was over the moon!

DSCF2470 cropped

The six weeks’ run-up to Christmas was a bit of a nightmare, to be honest – I’m a conscientious soul, so I was desperately trying to wind things up in a logical manner at work, leaving everything neatly tied up, as well as training the people who would be taking over my various tasks and responsibilities . . . Then there were the structural edits on my book . . . Writing a synopsis for the sequel (I HATE those!) . . . organising and promoting a sale for one of my previous books . . . Let alone Christmas itself, the preparations for which passed me by in a bit of a daze.

You would think that when the New Year rolled around, I would be able to breathe a little easier.

After all, I had all those plans to finally sort out the piles of c**p in the attic . . .

Floor of attic

Take an inspiring and weight-reducing walk once a day with no excuses . . .

Walk in the woods

Spring clean the entire house, do some decorating, spend time preparing delicious and nutritious meals, sort out twenty-odd years’ worth of family photos, spend quality time with my family . . .

I’m sure you’ve already guessed that isn’t happening!


More edits – structural #2. Line edits. Proofs.

Bookouture’s announcement of the signing.

Getting to know who’s who at Bookouture (lovely people, by the way!)

The cover reveal and pre-order for The Little French Guesthouse.

A third short story published in The People’s Friend magazine.

Life Coach - for Twiiter

Meeting up with some writer friends for lunch, something we do a few times a year and which I always enjoy.

And a portrait photographer friend kindly took some ‘proper’ photos of me to bandy around when I’m asked for an author pic.

Helen Pollard_ author portait

Blog interview questions are now beginning to roll in, in anticipation of publication on 28th April, and since I never like to short-change anyone, I always take my time answering them as best as I can.

And all this while desperately trying to make inroads into writing the sequel . . .

My brain feels like it’s been on a spin cycle in the washing machine!

Befuddled face

And yet . . .

I am thoroughly enjoying writing in my new genre (chick lit / humorous women’s fiction), as it allows me to indulge my sense of humour whilst not foregoing the romance that inevitably creeps into anything I write.

My new publishing family at Bookouture are warm, friendly and supportive.

Interest in The Little French Guesthouse has been most encouraging – not something to be underestimated as I battle on with the sequel 🙂

Although I am working very long days, I am doing something I really want to do and have the full support of my wonderful husband and kids.

I’m certainly not complaining!


18 thoughts on “A hectic few months!

  1. lindahuber says:

    I know just how you feel. If our brains classified writing as ‘work’, we’d be the most overworked, stressed-out creatures on the planet. Fortunately, writing is ‘fun’… (usually…) 🙂

  2. kathleenbee says:

    Don’t be too hard on yourself. I resigned my job 6 and a bit years ago and I still haven’t done all those things I planned to do. My photos are in a huge mess, my house isn’t decorated, my store-room looks atrocious. I’d much rather be writing. It sounds like you’re having a ball!

  3. sharon says:

    Great news that you can now write full time, Helen. I would love to do that! Congratulations again on your success. As you know, I read and loved Warm Hearts in Winter, and think it’s well-deserved. I’m looking forward to seeing how your style has changed for the new book. By the way, great photograph! x

    • Helen Pollard says:

      Thank you, Sharon 🙂 I was so touched by your review of Warm Hearts in Winter! It gave me a lot of encouragement. And thanks re. the photo – I absolutely HATE having my photo taken, so I’m more than happy with it.

  4. M.A. Foxworthy says:

    Wouldn’t it be nice if being an author was like we imagined. We spend the day writing million dollar novels and pay someone else to take care of the mundane details of life. 😉

  5. rosgemmell says:

    What an exciting few months you’ve had, Helen! It takes ages to get into a new routine and I’ve found that not working outside the house makes it even more difficult sometimes as we always think we have more time than we do, or we don’t rush through things as quickly! Your new photo is lovely and I’m sure your latest novel will be great success.

  6. Janni says:

    Haha. I ‘retired’ in August 2015. Plans to keep a tidier house; cook better dinners; paint regularly; cull, scan and sort the old family photos (some from the early 20th century) haven’t actually happened yet so I can relate, but I don’t even have the excuse (and reward) of writing a bestseller. Lol

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