“They Say I’m Doing Well” Blog Tour – Stop #23 – Francesca Marlow

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They say I’m doing well, but I guess it depends on how you define the word well. I’m healthy; I have a job, a roof over my head, two beautiful little girls, a very supportive partner, a big loving family and a small group of awesome friends. In my eyes, that makes me richer than many people.

To the outside world, my life may be viewed as a happy one and for the most part, it is. However, the life I portray on social media are the parts I want people to see, therefore, yes; I’m socially well.

What most don’t realise, and the part I rarely share is the hours it cost me in MIND time to get to this point in my life. The struggles, the low points, the lonely, late night cries, the endless loss of sleep, the battles with my own thoughts at two, three and four in a morning.

In August 2014, I split from my husband after eight years of marriage, ending a relationship of thirteen years. At thirty-three years old, I never thought I would find myself in that position. I was starting my life over and I have never been as scared of anything in my life. Not even childbirth. I was suddenly solely responsible for, not only looking after myself but my two little girls – the two most precious things in my life. It turns out; they probably ended up looking after me the most with their innocent little minds, big hearts and simple outlooks on life. Hell, I envied them.  I’m still shocked at how isolating it feels when I see their empty beds staring back at me when they are staying at their dad’s. That’s when the sun goes down and the nightmares creep in.

Just because a person chooses to remain private, doesn’t spout all their problems publicly, or struggles to openly discuss them, doesn’t mean they don’t suffer. To the contrary, the quiet ones suffer, too. Being trapped in your own thoughts, not being able to make sense of them enough to talk about them, to even your closest friends, is a scary place to be. Add to that the fear of sounding stupid, the fear of admitting your failings, the fear of how society will judge you and you may find that you understand more why so many people suffer in silence. Sometimes, it’s the safest way to be.

Paranoia and insecurity are a bitch…

Who is going to want me with two kids?

Who is going to want me looking like this?

Who else is going to love my baby born, stretch marks?

Are they looking at me?

Are they whispering about me?

Why didn’t they invite me?

Why didn’t they invite my children?

What damage have I done to my girls?

God, I feel so guilty. How will I provide them with all the love and support they’re missing out on not being in a two parent family?

Did my daughter get into trouble at school because I left her dad? Is she lashing out because of me?

Why don’t my friends like my photos?

Are they judging me now, too?

Why aren’t family supporting my decisions?

Surely they understand?

These are just a few of the questions that my wonderful mind spends hours agonising over.

Then…

Insert identity crisis – I’d spent years being Fran the wife, Fran the daughter-in-law,

Fran the mum, but who the hell was Fran? I felt like I had to rediscover myself all over again.

Insert judgement days – I realised no matter what you do, what new things you try, whatever selfie you post, there’s always someone sat there waiting to pounce, to pull you to pieces and criticise you. They have no clue why you’re doing what you’re doing. They have no idea how many hours you spent deliberating over your every step.

Insert the mistakes – I am only human, I will make mistakes, everyone does. I made a ton of them. It’s just a shame others couldn’t admit their mistakes, too. It’s funny how many perfect people there were in my life and it’s even funnier how many friends you truly have (insert sarcasm). I learnt the hard way whom are the good eggs, but the good eggs I have, are keepers for life.

Then…

When the sun begins to rise in the morning, there’s a certain calm that ripples through the mind like an ocean gently washing over the shore, taking with it all the silly, unnecessary worry. And as you drag your weary, tired body from the sheets, you begin to wonder what it is about the night that causes such irrationality. You start to be able to rationalise the thoughts in your head that little bit easier, clearer.

You realise it’s not all doom and gloom because despite the disappointment of those you thought you could trust, you know there’s that one friend. That one friend you can rely on at all hours of the day to be on the other end of the phone, regardless of her plans. She picks you up and slaps you down as and when required. That one friend who understands without even having to explain, but that one friend you know you can’t rely on forever.  Also, whether realised or not, that one random text asking how you are means the world. Just the thought that someone took a minute out of their day to think about you, means more than they will probably ever know.

On the outside I probably seemed like I was taking it all in my stride, on the inside, I was dying a slow death. My thoughts were killing me day by day, pinning me down and keep me a prisoner in my own mind. It’s cliché but it’s true – when you’re down on your arse, the only way is up. When you’re staring back at the person in the mirror and you don’t even recognise yourself anymore and what you’ve become, then it’s time to have a serious word with the bastards in your head. It’s time to fight. It’s time to take a leaf out of your kid’s book and focus on the positives. It’s time to trust in a few people and let them in. Slowly, but surely, I started to realise…

I’m healthy.

I have a job.

I have a home.

I have two beautiful little girls.

I have a small group of awesome friends.

I have a big loving family.

With pain comes anger and for a while back there, that’s exactly how I felt; angry and disappointed. It was my decision to leave my marriage. No one said it would be easy, a few said it would be tough but never did I once imagine just how hard it would be. Nothing prepared me for the times I faced.

You find a way to let go of the anger.

You find a way to let go of the hurt.

You find a way to let go of the pain.

You let it go.

You start to live again.

The whole process has taught my MIND many things but one of the most specific is I’ve had to learn is to live without the materialistic things in life. That’s not to say I couldn’t before divorce, it’s just I now have an appreciation for the smaller, understated things – walks in the park, snuggles on the sofa, watching a film with my kids, baking on a Sunday, relaxing in a hot bath, just sitting alone in a quiet room listening to the sound of my calm breath.

I now have a new partner, who accepts my baby stretch marks, who encourages me to be me and not to concern myself with the opinions of others, but most of all, loves my girls just as much as he loves me. There truly are great people out there; you just need to trust and believe in yourself and hope that good things will follow.

2016 – I am grateful to all those who stood by me. I appreciate the things I do have in my life. I have more of an understanding to those who suffer pain, but most importantly, I feel stronger in mind, I am doing well.

#foreverafighter

Francesca Marlow © 2016

author bio

Francesca Marlow discovered her love for writing a few years ago when having some role play fun on Twitter with her best mate. They were inspired to create a world of their own which really helped her to channel every day thoughts and emotions, to deal with the daily grind of ‘life’. Never once did she think it would lead to releasing her first novel which she confesses to being one of the proudest moments.

Aside from releasing a novel, two of Francesca’s biggest accomplishment to date is her two little ladies which mean the world to her. She’s a Yorkshire lass and romantic at heart, with an eclectic taste in music and a great love for films; all of which continue to be a source of creativity as well as well deserved relaxation moments. A new found love for the gym has lead to a healthier, happier Fran, so when she’s not being a mum, working, reading or writing, she can be found lifting weights or just generally exhausted in a heap in her snuggle chair.

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorFMarlow

 

DONATE BUTTON

Thank you so much for taking part Fran!

To see the full list of authors taking part in this month-long blog tour, [click here]

To find out what “They Say I’m Doing Well” is all about, [click here]

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“They Say I’m Doing Well” Blog Tour – Stop #16 – Alexandra North

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 They say I’m doing well…

Am I? Really?

The pain consumes me, ravishing my weary body.

Will it ever end? Will I ever sleep?

Twisting, shooting, stabbing, gripping.

A never-ending cycle soothed by a myriad of pills and heat.

 

Cool water washes the tablets down and

I curl up tight, consoling my aching curves.

Unwelcome drowsiness, finally takes effect.

The warm medicinal blanket soothes my severed nerves.

 

They say I’m doing well … managing this illness,

But they don’t see me at dawn, in agony and pain.

They say I’m doing fine… being positive about my progress.

I’m trying very hard – after all, I have a reputation to maintain.

 

To most I am ‘fine’, for the mask is firmly fixed in place.

The lipstick is on; the cheeks rosy, the bright smile fake.

Only the closest of friends and family know my secret,

the torment I go through, each day I wake, each step I take.

 

I smile through unshed tears, pain ripping through my body,

as I chat with a colleague, or friend, or my son.

Screaming silently, I nod in all the right places;

Life is as it should be to all.

Another day has passed, another day is done.

 

My strength makes me proud; I control this illness.

Despair cloaks me in blackness, but positivity lets the light back in.

Those good days I embrace, and I live my life freely,

for when the bad days come, and they will,

I’ll indulge and give in.

 

They say I am doing well … what do they know?

I’ll be the judge of that, I will say if I am doing well.

Today may be a day where I want to scream and yell,

tomorrow one where I’m invincible and not living this hell.

 

One thing I know, my pain makes me strong.

I won’t let this beat me, this illness of mine.

I’m determined to not lose the person that I am.

The laughter bubbles, despite my ongoing decline.

 

The support I gain from my family and friends,

helps me fight this condition that may never end.

 

Alexandra North © 2016

author bio

ALEXANDRA NORTH…

… is an Amazon bestselling author who came onto the writing scene in 2014. She writes romance, with erotic themes, humour, drama and often suspense and there is always a HEA at the end of a book/series.
Ms. North lives in the rambling lush hills of Yorkshire, United Kingdom with her swoon-worthy husband and two children, 15 and 9. She worked as a Graphic Designer & Illustrator, for over 18 years before she wrote her first book and now combines design and writing in this new path when creating her book covers and teasers.
Writing was always a hobby and took a back seat to University, work, parenthood and unfortunately later, chronic long-term illness. One day she woke and thought ‘life’s too short – I’m going to finish that blummin book!’ She now devotes her time to writing love stories full of humour and naughtiness. When she isn’t manically typing away or trying to be the model wife and mum, Alexandra can be found shoe shopping (shoes are her weakness), cosying up with back-to-back TV series and enjoying her very own Sebastian Silver.

Find her at the following social media sites;

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alexandranorthauthor
Twitter: @alexnorthbooks
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/alexnorthbooks
http://www.alexandranorth.co.uk

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Thank you so much for taking part Alexandra!

To see the full list of authors taking part in this month-long blog tour, [click here]

To find out what “They Say I’m Doing Well” is all about, [click here]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“They Say I’m Doing Well” Blog Tour – Stop #15 – Amelia J Hunter

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They say I’m doing well. I’ve heard them talk in the corridors, discussing the meetings. If I practise what I have been taught, I’ll get through this with the tablets they suggest.

I’ll survive.

I’m not sure they really understand how I’ve been feeling, or if they are listening to the words I’m not saying. The times I hold my breath before I answer. Do they realise I’m using that time to think of a reason for what I need to say to satisfy their questions? To please them so they think they are achieving a good outcome from our limited time together?

Sometimes when I hear the pen tapping on the notebook I think I have been found out. My excuses have been seen through but nothing is said and another appointment is made, my cover-up worked.

The million-dollar question is when. When did it all begin, the cold sweats, the panic in my chest, the need to leave a room as soon as I enter, the thoughts in the pit of my stomach. But I don’t know. I’ve explained my past, about my insecurities in my youth, but nothing pin points the exact moment because there isn’t one. It’s manageable they have told me, it will pass, I must learn to control it. I’ve tried, oh my god have I tried, but the feelings that I can’t explain creep in before I can contain them.

I hoped after the first few years, after it started, that the pain would dull, but instead I’ve learnt to disguise the anguish.

Which has led me here tonight.

I hope when you read this, a new life can begin and this moment will be a distant memory. I hope I am not a horrible memory and one you can forgive, someone you can learn from when you think there is no one who understands what you are going through.

I wanted to write to you on parchment paper with a black fountain pen. The words seem to flow better when the ink glides over the grooved paper. It stops me thinking if what I am writing is my true inner feelings or not. I don’t have time to pause, you will see, if I do the ink leaves a blob. I don’t want that, I want to write what I need to say in one sitting, no smudges, no errors.

I wanted to let you know that no matter how bad you feel, no matter how bad your day is, it can not get any worse, things pass. Time passes. That feeling you are having will pass and move on to another.

I’ve learnt that the future can not frighten you when you aren’t in it.

The past cannot be changed, and the present moves on to the future.

But I’m too late now to take that all on board. I wish someone had this letter for me when I was at my lowest and then maybe, just maybe I would be learning to cope better instead of fading away.

Writing this to you I hope will make it easier, I hope what I have gone through will give you strength and I hope you don’t make the same mistake I did when I thought I couldn’t go on. The mess I’ve left behind is worse than my darkest day.

I thought I could cope, I thought I could control the urges that overwhelmed me. But, but they consumed me, smothered me until they choked me.

I stopped asking for help.

I stopped looking for solutions.

I stopped dreaming of a future.

I stopped crying that day and everyone around me started.

I could hear my family saying over and over how well I was doing. I wanted to scream you didn’t see me in the early hours but I no longer had a voice.

You have a voice though; you have a choice and never forget you have amazing help out there that wasn’t around in my day.

I’m leaving this letter, neatly folded, on your pillow while you are sleeping. It’s the best time for me to move around without being noticed. When you wake in the early hours, like I’ve seen you do, I hope my words will comfort you and give you the encouragement to reach out for the guidance waiting for you.

You are not alone.

You never were.

Amelia J Hunter © 2016

author bio

Amelia J Hunter is an indie writer who likes to take her reader on a journey through her erotic writing and her contemporary romance novels.

Leaving the bright lights of London behind in the early 90’s, she now lives in the Irish countryside with her family, a good coffee maker and plenty of talk.

Amelia is a sociable writer who loves to hear from readers, writers and anyone that makes her smile and enjoys her ramblings.

Amelia has a blog where you can read short stories created just for that page, book updates, events and even audios of her work. Amelia’s blog can be found at http://www.ameliajhunter.blogspot.ie

Twitter at @ameliajhunter1
Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Amelia-J-Hunter-Author
or email at ameliajhunter1@gmail.com

DONATE BUTTON

 

Thank you so much for taking part Amelia!

To see the full list of authors taking part in this month-long blog tour, [click here]

To find out what “They Say I’m Doing Well” is all about, [click here]

 

 

The Journey Here

As another writing year draws to a close, I better put some words down while I still have chance, so here’s what I’ve learned this year . . .

Having been writing religiously for four years now, I can confidently acknowledge that the writer’s journey is never smooth and the true writer doesn’t always write what’s right, either. They write what’s in their heart at the moment, what’s true and good to them at a certain point in time. So when I look back on my work up until now, it’s clear some of my words have become alien to me, because I’ve moved on. Some of my stuff still feels very raw, and other things I’ve become so much less precious about.

They say first-time writers should write the book they want to read if they want to get a book deal. I say, PAH! Sometimes starting out writing at all is a feat so whatever idea you’ve got, go with it. Also, not all of us are out for a so-called book deal. (Incidentally, many deals that publishers offer you are not pro-writer.) I’ve spoken to many a fellow writer, so I know there are good deals and bad ones out there, and it’s when you get a good one that you cling on. Seriously – I’ve heard about lost royalties, not being able to publish future books until being out of your current contract – and worse – having no say when it comes to your cover and content. Some publishers have ripped the heart from books and left them soulless.

This year I’ve gone from virtually being a full-time mum to now being a full-time writer and editor. When I say full-time, I don’t mean 9-5. I work hours most people could not imagine suffering through, but the truth is, I never suffer, because I love it. Full days of writing (in between editing jobs) has transformed my routine, my work ethic, my writing. Being able to write a book straight has improved the whole experience tenfold. I have always had a game plan and I’m getting closer to the fruition of this plan all the time. I’ve been biding my time and it’s my firm belief that time is not your enemy, but your one, true friend if you utilise it properly. I know how much I love writing therefore I know I’m good, because it’s not painful for me – this writing thing – it’s getting easy now. I liken it to physical training and the more practise you put in, the more you naturally get right first time, without all those hundreds of redrafts. The more positive feedback you get, the more your confidence grows too. Nonetheless, the most devastating thing for me would be if I were to become a one-hit wonder, forever leaning on that for future successes. Thankfully a lot of creative people around me have recognised and congratulated me on building a foundation rather than writing a one-trick pony to appeal to the masses. I am a writer. I want to be a writer forever.

A lot of people have come and gone from my life since I started out writing. The main reason for this is that a lot of people say they want to work with me but don’t show the same dedication and commitment I’ve got. Which doesn’t really work for me. Some people seem to think that the publishing world is a game to play whereas I very much feel like it’s a starting stone to self-fulfilment.

I realised this self-fulfilment thing means Sarah Michelle doesn’t write books to pretty something up. I write to provoke and challenge.

So, to clear up this year and what I’ve learned, here’s the spaghetti in a more orderly manner:-

1) Some people think good writing is plot twists, crash, bangs and wallops. Literally, sticking as many big OMGs in one book and letting the audience digest it all at the rate of 50 miles a second. There’s some really great commercial fiction out there and I hold my hands up to the authors who master it. But walloping fiction isn’t the be all and end all. Some of us start out feeling like good books MUST have shocks galore in order for them to be good. NOT TRUE. Sure, a page turner must hook the reader at the end of every chapter, but other readers are just as happy to sit back and relax, too.

2) I’ve had to come to terms with stuff I don’t like in books. Personally I cannot write what I don’t believe is possible/and or true, so I will never write characters that are weak but somehow end up getting everything they want. I don’t believe beautiful language can excuse a murderer their sins. I despise cliche. I don’t think even the most beautiful poetry or prose can hide flawed structure in a book. Likewise heroines with no gumption have no chance getting airtime in one of my books, whether under my pseudonym or my real name! (YES I HAVE A PSEUDONYM AND YOU WILL NEVER KNOW SHE/HE IS ME.) Sarah Michelle doesn’t exactly write what you would call Book Boyfriend books, either. My stories mainly centre around mysteries and psychological issues so the Boyfriend is just one element of the bigger picture. Personally, when I used to read as a kid, I read for enlightenment, and to gain knowledge. That’s not changed. I like to be challenged by a book but also require some basis in reality. I can’t read nice little heart-warming reads myself, but for someone else, I can write them if I am really in the mood.

3) A good enough writer can write about real life and make it a fantastic story, too. A lot of friends over the years have often accused me of pulling their leg with some of the things I’ve seen and done but I don’t tell lies and I have seen and done some crazy shit, which is probably why I can write the stories I do! I got told years and years ago that words aren’t enough. You have to live before you can be a writer. I took that onboard, trust me. For instance, I know a real-life chambermaid. I know a girl who lost her mother young. Myself and Chloe Matthews could be twins.

4) Less is more. But this is the hardest writerly lesson you will ever learn. Less means you have to put faith in your audience that they will read between the lines. Less means you have to give over control to someone else!! EEEPPP! NO!!! I hear so many writers scream. This is so subjective because readers vary as widely as writers do. Some readers love details, others just cannot be bothered and like a bit of wham, bam, thank you ma’am.

5) Sometimes a story just comes to you which is a gift. Angel Avenue and its sequel, Beyond Angel Avenue, are tales gifted to me from some place in the stratosphere – either that – or my subconscious instructed me because my consciousness refuses to admit I am soppy at heart!! HA-HA! (Yes, all writers are crazy.) So, these are tales I would call fantastical, sometimes even whimsical, but still rooted deep in reality. They are the stories I wrote without even breaking a sweat and they are the stories I feel most engaged with. My husband read these and continually laughed and got frustrated with Jules and Warrick, murmuring helplessly, “They’re just such strong characters.” Suspension of disbelief with these books IS A MUST but they are so plausible, too. The ANGEL AVENUE series – overall – is a testament to the power of the human mind and how it protects and preserves itself. Sometimes, among the canon of your work, you produce something universal and engaging not because you made the choice to write a book that is marketable or profitable or fits a current trend – but because it’s real and relatable and the idea for the book wouldn’t cease until you had it out there on a page. Writing has its ups and downs but the downs can sometimes lead to the mega highs of something like these two books – which I wrote not for myself – but the heroes and heroines out there doing things in their daily lives which they don’t decree as fabulous but which I do. When a reviewer said recently that these characters aren’t charming – they were right – Jules and Warrick are real people. Jaded people. But the love they share is what counts.

6) There are deeds you do for others which mean more than deeds you do for yourself.

7) 2016 is going to be interesting. Since my husband started working in marketing, we’ve learned a lot together about what works and what doesn’t. My husband speaks to a social media expert on a daily basis who’s in charge of building the social media platforms of several billion-euro companies. So maybe SML’s pseudonym will be the one-trick pony that allows me – Sarah, the person – to write what makes her heart happy. Because the tricks I’m learning about marketing are enough to make the common consumer cringe. So you might be hearing a lot less from SML and I’ll leave you to ponder what my nom de plume might be.

I love everyone who reads my words. I think you’re all insane, but I love you. I love the people who’ve got to the end of this blog but most of all I love writing and I know I’m unlikely to give it up very soon.

Please do check out Angel Avenue and Beyond Angel Avenue, my most recent AND BEST novel yet. I can sing my way through these last few days of the year because I’m so fulfilled and so pleasantly surprised with how the journey has so far turned out.

Beyond Angel Avenue is out tomorrow.

Have a magical Christmas and a wonderful new year.

Sarah x

2015’s books:

#TeaserTuesday and Some New Reviews…

A series about real issues, with a little bit of mystery, intrigue, shock and delight all thrown into the mix…

Some recent reviews of Angel Avenue:

 

Compelling read:

I found this book compelling, I wanted to read more about the intricacies of the main characters lives. The detail to attention is amazing and I really could picture the area and characters.

Jules and Warrick are both complex people with troubled pasts, a chance meeting could be the saviour of them both or it could spell disaster.

This story is about heartbreak and loss, the need for human connection and physical closeness. It’s a beautiful story.

Jules has not had an easy life but she is surviving and getting on with her life, the love and loss of a man leaves her broken and she finds herself spending her Saturdays searching and craving for some physical contact, just a hug will do. Warrick spots Jules and watches her every Saturday and finally decides to see if she is ok? A friendship develops that has the potential to go further but both of their pasts and secrets hold these two back. The story takes twists that you wouldn’t expect but it flows so well.

I’m looking forward to reading Beyond Angel Avenue and where the author will take the story of Jules and Warrick.

I Loved This Book:

I loved this book. A love story that took a slow meandering path with a few unexpected twists and turns that left me wanting to shout at the author. I enjoyed the way the characters got to know each other’s flaws…..Warts and all.

I Was Personally Touched:

Lets see where exactly to begin. It would be easier to tell you what I will not say…like tell you about the characters and what happens. Hey! That takes all the fun out of you reading the book right? Right!

I will suggest you have a box of tissues near by, you may find you need them. Just sayin’.

I really want to thank Book Bub for letting me know about bargains available from Amazon. The choices certainly have allowed me to learn about authors I would not have known. Kinda reminds me of the days of going through the bargain books at different stores. Just to see and always walking away with at least four books. Sorry got a little side tracked here but it was because of this that I learned of this book.

Yes it is a romance novel but no where near what you would think one would be like. This was more like the slice of two people’s lives that come together that are really great for each other but they have so many wounds and ghosts some of them causes a lot of pain and time to work through.

We all have some of these skeletons in our closets some we have buried so deep we think that we have dealt with them but in actuality we have not. For me the story struck close to home, sometimes too close. But there is also a cleansing that can happen as well.

I feel the Sarah has taken some very tough issues and worked them through her characters that not only brought them to life but made them a part of me In my humble opinion, it would be difficult for one to walk away from this book and not be changed from it.

Released one week from today, Beyond Angel Avenue:

View the early reviews…

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27477733-beyond-angel-avenue

I was lucky enough to read this book straight after Angel Avenue, I’m so glad the author decided to conclude the story. There was so much more depth to these characters than I first thought. I loved the first book but this just blew me away.
The story follows on directly from Angel Avenue and we see how Jules and Warrick deal with the next chapter of their life. However the ghosts from their pasts are still haunting them and in order to find closure they have to take some risks that might make or break them. They are dragged into situations that puts their life in danger and have no idea who they can trust.
The continuing story of Warrick and Jules is beautifully told. I was gripped and compelled by the story and the characters. A truly amazing series that will stay with me forever.

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Buy Angel Avenue:

UK

US

Pre-order Beyond Angel Avenue:

UK

US

#NaNoWriMo – #NoNoWriMo

Every year I see writers coming together for National November Writing Month, which challenges all writers to write 50,000 words in one month. Let it be known, I have never actually (I mean officially) signed up for this challenge and I think I know why…

I’ve never signed up and yet, something about writers coming together to avoid social media and JUST WRITE always tugs me in and makes me think you can do this, too! However, the thing is… you really have to write the equivalent of 1,667 words a day, every day, for thirty days – and it is just not as easy as you think. If you don’t have the ideas pre-formed, I think pantsing that amount in such a time has got to be hard. If you’ve also just finished one project and are working on a new one for #NaNoWriMo, that’s going to be testing because there is only so much creativity one can produce. You have to have breaks between projects no matter what anyone says. There’s only so much in the tanks.

For me, November is busy enough. Everyone wants their books edited in November because they want to give people books as Christmas presents. In the past, I was a journalist wife’s, a widow of sorts, waiting for him to emerge from the 14-hour days of November and the night shifts spent getting the Christmas magazines out of the door – so I might have had time to write every night back then. However, since he’s changed careers, we actually have date nights now in November, and it’s GREAT!

Another thing about November is that it is one of the darkest months of the year!! Truly. Everybody in the northern hemisphere is on a bit of a downer, because the seasons are changing and the jumpers are coming out. Maybe writing is the escape some people need in November, or maybe 1,667 words a day is the stress you could just do without. I personally don’t believe you can force yourself to write a structured amount every day. I either get 5,000 words out in one day, or I get nothing at all. I have to be desperate to write in order to write, that’s how it works for me.

However I do love the idea that all writers are beavering away at once and magic is multiplying across the land with all these writers casting their writerly spells everywhere. However, I just never find it practical to write like this in November. It just never works for me. Last year I did write 50,000 words in a month but it was 30,000 on one project and 20,000 on another.

This year, I’m up to my eyeballs in edits and just cannot manage it. It’s just not happening. My instinct tells me the words I’d splutter would end up scrapped in a later edit. That happened last year with Unfurl. I was trying to use #NaNoWriMo to complete this book and 75% of what I wrote got scrapped because I just didn’t have the uuuummmmppphhhh there. I was forcing words.

Goodbye NaNo, maybe next year. We do have a strange relationship, don’t we? 😉

But hey ho, while I’m not writing on the laptop, my mind is still conjuring the next projects to come…

Revealing my 11th novel, Beyond Angel Avenue . . .

angelave

Last week, I finished my edits on this book, Beyond Angel Avenue. I have been very secretive about it and only my husband has known I’ve been writing this book. He told me not to write this book but I went against him because I HAD TO WRITE THIS BOOK. I held off on this book until it was impossible to ignore and for the best part of this year, I have been writing it in the back of my head.

For readers already familiar with Angel Avenue – yes, you’d be right – this book is a sequel. In fact, I never thought I would write this book. To explain more, here is a note I’ve inserted at the beginning of the book which explains everything…

Dear Reader,

I wrote Angel Avenue two years ago and never, ever intended on writing this sequel. The first book was such a hard novel to get over and I suppose, in a way, that might have been because there was still more to tell. For the past year, I’ve had Warrick whispering in my ear, telling me a brand, new story – which also clears up some of the mysteries of Angel Avenue. I wrestled with whether I should tell this story because Angel Avenue is so special to me and I didn’t want to ruin that with a sequel that just didn’t measure up.

I have loved every, single second of writing these books. I’ve written many books but these ones mean so much to me and I can’t even tell you why. The story is based where I live and is imbued with the love I feel for the city I met and married my husband in. I’ve tried not to waste too many words on location because I like to think this story could happen in any town or city, in any country.

What I can honestly say is that this is “The End”. I knew it for a certainty the day I typed those words at the very end of this book. That day, a very red-eyed mother went to pick up her daughter from school, knowing Beyond Angel Avenue is the underscore of this particular chapter in my writing life. When I wrote Angel Avenue, it was one of the happiest writing experiences of my life. It was a lot of fun to write. However, Beyond Angel Avenue is a different beast and delves one layer deeper. I cried absolute buckets writing this second book.

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What I want to add to this is that Beyond Angel Avenue delves into some issues very personal to people in my life. In due course, I will be uploading the book to Amazon for pre-order complete with full synopsis.

N.B. Angel Avenue and Beyond Angel Avenue will retain these covers for the eBooks but the paperbacks will now have artistic wraparound covers instead and I’ll be revealing these in the coming weeks too.

All that is left for me to stay is stay tuned. Beyond Angel Avenue tells the story of Jules and Warrick as they navigate married, family life together. But as with many of my books, nothing is what it seems, and life throws them a curveball I never saw coming either.

COMING DECEMBER 22ND…

BAA draft 2

VISIT AMAZON TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT ANGEL AVENUE…

Angel_Avenue_Cover_for_Kindle

☆☆Sub Rosa Trilogy Blog Tour☆☆

subrosatrilogytour

Trilogy Overview

The story begins in 2011. Journo Chloe Harmon starts a new job in London and meets photographer Cai Matthews, a younger man with talents beyond Chloe’s comprehension. Not only is he talented, he’s trapped by a mystery from the past he’s been bound by. He has NO WAY OUT. He cannot turn a corner without his every move being recorded by his ever-watchful aunt, Jennifer Matthews, a world-famous fashion editor with vast amounts of power at her fingertips.

Cai may be trapped. However, Chloe chases Cai even when he leaves the country because she has a few life experiences under her belt which have made her tougher than she seems. UNBIND is where the story begins and UNFURL is where it continues…

Chloe knows there was a death. It has been painted so many different ways already and there are still other ways of painting it yet. There are questions to be answered and the story gets darker as Cai and Chloe try to make a life together…

KAY (4)In the concluding part of the trilogy, UNLEASH, the story drags Chloe’s best friend Kayla Tate into the fray. Chloe and Kay have known each other for decades, since they started school. They’ve come in and out of each other’s lives but have always been there for one another when it’s counted. UNLEASH sees Kay face up to a lot of truths about herself, her friends and the man she loves. It’s a conclusion to the trilogy which gives answers to all the questions and brings two people Chloe loves together, at last.

About Sarah:

Sarah Lynch has written for as long as she can remember. Writing was always going to be the job she did and after working in journalism, the birth of her first child encouraged her to finally take up her pen and try her hand at creative writing instead.

As S. M. Lynch, she pens science-fiction, and her UNITY series is currently in the process of being re-edited. As Sarah Michelle Lynch, she pens erotic romance, sometimes with thrilling, psychological elements added in. Her characters are real, add depth to beefy, mind-bending stories and ask questions of her readers she is too afraid to answer herself.

Sarah holds a degree in English from The University of Hull and now works as a proofreader and editor.

Watch the trailer:

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CLICK COVERS TO BUY (UNBIND IS FREE TO DOWNLOAD THIS WEEK ONLY):

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News and Updates

Happy summer holidays to all parents out there currently pulling their hair out! That includes me! 😉 Hoping to make the most of the holidays, just as soon as I shift this end-of-term-itis!

I have a few things in the pipeline at the moment so before I disappear to enjoy the summer, here we go…

I just wrote an exciting piece for an erotic website called frolicme.com and it has been very well received. Watch this space, it should be out fairly soon-ish! Check out the website and keep your eyes peeled.

The first 5* reviews of Unleash have started to come in…

5.0 out of 5 stars The petals fall on this fabulous, fast paced trilogy!, 19 July 2015
This review is from: Unleash (Sub Rosa Trilogy Book 3) (Kindle Edition)
The concluding novel in the Sub Rosa trilogy grabs you from the very first page and does not let up until you’ve read the final word. This book is from the perspective of Kayla, Chloe’s best friend and a character that has had a turbulent past, closed off to the notion that love could be her’s. But as she loses her heart to another flawed character they are able to start to mend. Coupled with this super, sexy love story is the continuing way that Claudia is trying to control their lives in her own evil way!
Will love conquer all, will Claudia gets what she deserves? All I can say is that the twists and turns of this plot will keep you turning the page long into the night. It is fast paced, beautifully written and you really feel like you are emersed in the characters lives. Towards the end I wanted to slow down, savour my final encounter with Chloe, Cai and Kayla. I didn’t want to say goodbye.
These three books are so worth reading and now you can do it without the wait in between. They will leave you breathless so don’t wait to buy, grab them now and fall in love!
5.0 out of 5 stars Unleash the secrets 22 July 2015
Format:Kindle Edition
Unleash is the third instalment of the Sub Rosa series, so far the series has been filled with mystery and suspense and this final instalment is no different.

Book three brings Kayla Tate to the forefront, delving into her background and relationships. Kayla has featured in the two previous books as Chloe’s best friend, she has supported Chloe through the trials and tribulations of her relationship with Cai Matthews but it turns out she is more involved in the mystery than we realised.

Kayla is a strong and feisty woman, having a troubled past has made her the woman that she is today. Whilst following Kayla’s budding relationship the ever present Claudia Matthews weaves her secrets and lies in everyone’s lives. Is Kayla strong enough to unleash the lies and finally solve the mystery?

This is a fast paced book, and the author has done the story justice, how she was able to keep on top of the web of lies I have no ideas but I was gripped!

This series has had me in suspense and the ending is perfect! I have to re-read this series to see if I have missed anything, or if the truth is hidden within the pages.

This is a sexy, mystery that you will not want to put down!

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Don’t forget the first book in the series is just 99pence/cents (click images to buy):

99 cents

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KAY (4)

I have a few editing projects on my plate at the minute and editing for other people is something I am going to be doing more and more of come September when my daughter starts school full-time. More details to follow on that soon. Currently I am fully-booked.

FABIEN: THE SERIAL will conclude with one, last short novel, called I’m Yours, Fabien. Estimated release date for this is Autumn 2015 and I will release the three instalments as one paperback soon after that.

I do have more books to write this year and I am looking forward to seeing what I can come up with next but for now I am going to enjoy my summer, reading, baking and hopefully catching some rays!

I am also planning to re-release my science fiction series, UNITY, at some point but more details on that are to follow!

If you are a blogger/reviewer who would like to review any of my books, just get in touch through my FB page: www.facebook.com/SarahMLynch

Sarah’s Books on Amazon: author.to/sarahmichellelynch