This post was originally published at Novelicious.com and is now at WritingTipsOasis.com. WritingTipsOasis.com acquired Novelicious.com in June 2022.
I was in France with an old friend who’d been seriously ill. While she was having treatment she’d told me that what she most wanted to do when she was free of it was to go to a residential language school in France. She’d barely finished the sentence when I said I’d love to go with her if she wanted company (we live in different countries).
I sent the manuscript of Fallen to my editor before I left. He’d edited my last book (In Your Face) and other non-fiction work of mine, but this was fiction. I didn’t know if he’d want it. I knew there were problems with it and I’d had very negative feedback from someone whose opinion I usually trusted, so my confidence had been pretty much cremated and scattered to every wind there is.
I knew it would take a while for him to read it. I imagined I’d have enough to think about during intensive French lessons to stop me obsessing along will he/won’t he lines, but of course I sneaked off to check my email 99 times a day, just in case. And one day there he was, saying he liked it. I had to read the email a couple of times to be sure. Then I went and found my friend and we broke out and hiked into the village to celebrate.
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It was hot and we wanted a beer and we found a biker’s bar, I swear every man in there weighed more than 20 stone, they all had beards and tats and those Men In Black sunglasses, every one of them dressed in leather. It was like a casting call for mean-looking bikers and it was 1000% obvious that we had no business being there, with our pale Irish skin and our flip flops, our tentative French.But there was a book deal in the air so we strode up to the counter and ordered two bottles of Kronenbourg. Just for badness we ordered two more after that and smiled at everyone, sweet as pie, while we twisted on our barstools like schoolgirls and ate all the briny green olives and salted nuts we could manage, making every one of them last. Then we strolled back to the language school, giddy with the sheer joy of being alive.
Lia's novel, Fallen, is out now.