Living My Best Life – (Going behind the filters and revealing what it’s really like to have a book published: Part 5) by Claire Frost
Part 5 – It’s actually happening!!
Five years, hundreds of thousands of words and all the tears – both sad and happy – later, the day is almost upon us: yes, this week, my debut novel is finally hitting the shelves!
The reviews are coming in, the blog tour starts today and the white wine is warming up nicely for my launch party. And, I feel… actually, I feel amazing! I was worried that the weight of my own expectations and a tendency to overthink every minute detail and throwaway comment was going to wake me up at silly o’clock every day stressing about whether the book is as good as it can be and whether it will sell enough copies.
But thanks to the general loveliness of the publishing world, instead I feel elated, excited and really proud of my book baby. Team BATC have been encouraging, inspiring and full of the best advice and ideas; the blogging community have set social media alight with #LivingMyBestLie reviews left, right and centre; and journalists and authors have been overwhelmingly generous and supportive with their quotes.
Then there’s my agent Tanera, whose guiding hand has become so crucial to my writing journey, and my long-suffering friends and family, who are almost more excited than I am that this is finally happening! In fact, my work friends all cried when I ran into the office (having nearly walked slap-bang into Chris Evans coming out of the lift, natch) clutching my very first finished copy of Living My Best Li(f)e (I mean, have you seen that pink foil?!).
I loved – like, really loved – the gorgeous book proofs that Team BATC’s marketing genius Amy masterminded, but it’s not quite the same as having a real-life, bona fide, this-is-going-to-be-sold-in-a-shop copy to stroke. In my very first blog on this site I said I wasn’t sure when I would truly believe my book was actually going to be published, but now I can tell you that the moment finally arrived when I held that finished copy in my hands (complete with gorgeous cover quote from the legend that is Milly Johnson).
I’ve been lucky enough to chat to lots of wise, established authors during my journey to becoming a published writer, and I’ve lapped up everything they’ve said in the hope that one day be I might join their ranks. And there’s one piece of advice that I’ve heard more than any other: you’re only a debut author once, so enjoy every moment of it – oh, and book a lovely spa day for two weeks after publication when the inevitable comedown hits! So, while I can’t wait to celebrate with all my friends and family at my launch party on Thursday evening, I’ve been trying to embrace and savour every single minute of the last few days and I am determined to continue doing so all this week.
In fact, I’m writing this blog with a glass of prosecco in my hand, the biggest grin on my face and the proudest tears in my eyes.
For once, I can truly say, I’m living my best life.