Today I celebrate a special anniversary. On this day, a year ago, my first novel, Neither Here Nor There, was published. I will always be indebted to the people at Crooked Cat Publishing for making that happen.

NeitherHereNorThereCoverLast month, I posted a poem based on the acknowledgements. Today I want to reflect on some of the things that have happened to me because of that event:

  • I met a wonderful group of authors, some of whom I have highlighted in various posts.
  • I joined Toastmasters and continue to learn how to give speeches.
  • I gave several online interviews.
  • I wrote several guest posts that were published around the blogosphere.
  • I read from my novel, first to the attendees of my offline launch party and later to a larger audience.
  • I took part in Indie Authors Appreciation Week, organised by Carmilla Voiez.
  • I gave my first author talk.
  • And shortly there will be a very special event that I will tell you about in August.
Indie Authors Appreciation Week Poster

My flyer for Indie Authors Appreciation Week

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November, for my third year running, means: NaNoWriMo, that month when crazy people around the world, together or alone, type out a lot of words, hopefully 50,000 of them. So if you don’t see me around so much, you’ll know what I’m doing. As usual, I haven’t planned enough of the novel in advance, but I have a provisional title and a cover that I rather like.

Cover2

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Last night, at my Toastmasters Club, I gave a speech called: A Novel Approach. I’m sure you can guess what that was about. It was my second speech there. I didn’t think my first one was good enough to publicise. This one wasn’t perfect either, but it’s an improvement:

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Today, I discovered a new, comprehensive map of the Machane Yehuda market, which features in my novel: Neither Here Nor There. It’s designed by Joel Haber and includes a complete list of all the stalls, shops, bank and whatnot in the area. I used the map to rewrite part of the novel:

So, Esty is at number 7 when she spies Mrs G and her accomplice marching towards her. She has to get away from them. Along 16 and back along 3 and 4? No, she’d be too visible there. So she goes along 6 and 5, then turns along 12 and hops on a train at 29. But the two women are just behind. Will they catch her?

but I think  prefer the original!

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The other day, I read a blog post that made me angry. I was so angry that I decided to write a blog post about it, even though it wasn’t about anything this blog is about. When I’d finished writing it, I felt less angry and decided it really wasn’t suitable here. So it remains in my draft posts. Perhaps I’ll put the sentiments into a novel one day. Perhaps I’ll put them into the novel I’m about to write. We’ll see.

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Whether you’re doing NaNo or not, I wish you lots of success and will be back on the other side, if not before.

BackInApril

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No, that’s from a different break.

This time it’s December.

I’m not here. That is… I’m somewhere, but I’m not around as I should be to announce my guest post on Jane Bwye’s blog. Jane, who has lived for most of her life in Kenya, is the author of Breath of Africa, a novel dedicated to the youth of Kenya.

So I scheduled this post in advance.

My guest post is about Toastmasters, which I joined recently. You can find it here. If it’s not there yet, it soon will be. And it’s partly to celebrate my birthday, which was yesterday.

Back soon….