Friday, 11 October 2013

My book boyfriend? My book baby more like…

Today I'm welcoming the Poppy Dolan There’s More to Life Than Cupcakes
Blog tour to 'The Love Of A Good Book'


The heroine of my new novel There’s More to Life Than Cupcakes has babies on the brain. More specifically, whether she’s enough of a grown up to actually be responsible for a mini human. And as I was writing – over the last 9 months, with plenty of ups, downs, jubilation, irritation and sleepless nights – I realised that maybe writing a novel was a leeeeeetle bit like having a baby*. You’re up all hours, you feel a bit sick sometimes, you worry about it going out into the world on its own and you also put on a bit of weight – I am particularly very guilty of a Freddo Frog or seven while I’m having a big writing sesh. A million calories while you move at most 3mm from your seat = writer’s bum.

A book is a whole world that starts as just a single idea, in the same way a baby is a whole person that starts from a single … well, you fill in the blank. Plus, a book doesn’t appear overnight: it takes long months for that idea to come together, sentence by sentence, every little piece of the puzzle carefully chosen and placed. And because you’ve been the one that’s written every single word and made this big, intricate, beautiful (to you) novel, it sometimes makes it hard to hear that it’s maybe not as perfect as you think. No one likes to hear they have an ugly baby, do they?

But when the criticism is hard to hear is precisely when you should listen to it. Otherwise, you can tell yourself your book baby is perfect and darling and the best in the world. You might send it out to readers still in a new-parent daze and miss the glaring problems that still need fixing. I mean, just because a real-life baby was awesome at building blocks you wouldn’t put them in charge of a construction site the next day. A book baby needs teaching, bad habits need to be gently trained out and there’ll be lots of stumbling along the way, but that hard process is so worth it. After you’ve pulled your hair out a million times and sorted that dialogue that was clunky and the plot that was crawling, you’ll have a smart, funny, well-balanced novel that can stand on its own two feet. Then all you can do is cross your fingers that it meets some friendly readers…

I’m certainly super glad that I had so many talented editors, proofreaders and designers helping to shape up my book baby. It’s not easy to hear other people’s feedback, but it stops you becoming a pushy parent.

*OK, so I know writing a book is nowhere as hard or emotional or significant as having a baby. But for about five seconds I thought it was a clever analogy.


Twitter: @PoppyDWriter
Novelicious Author Page:!poppy-dolan/c12xu
Amazon - There's More to Life than Cupcakes


Novelicious have not one, not two, not three, but five kits of baking and cake decorating supplies to give away from BBC Apprentice finalist Luisa Zissman’s The Baker Shop. Chock full of gorgeous edible shapes, sprinkles and even some sparkly edible glitter, each kit contains £50 worth of goodies. That should keep you in baking supplies right up until the last page.

There are multiple ways to win:

1) Post a photo of your best baked creation on Poppy’s Facebook page, or send her a pic on Twitter @PoppyDWriter before 7pm UK Time on Tuesday 15th October, and she’ll choose her favourite (after the Great British Bake Off, of course).

2) If you haven’t heard, Ellie Redford is in a bit of a pickle and she’s asking for your advice . Leave her a comment before 12pm on Wednesday 16th October, and Novelicious will choose their favourite later that day.

3) Head to Twitter, and tweet Novelicious @Novelicious with the hashtag #PoppyDolanCupcakes (they would love to hear your thoughts on the book) any time during the next week. A winner will be randomly selected at midday on Thursday 17th October.

4) Finally, pop along to any of the brilliant hosting blogs on the There’s More to Life Than Cupcakes book tour and leave a comment on a tour post. Novelicious will randomly select one commenter at midnight on Thursday 24th October once the tour has concluded.


Monday 14th October: Rea Book Review

Tuesday 15th October: Victoria Loves Books

Wednesday 16th October: Kim The Bookworm

Thursday 17th October: Jennifer Joyce Writes

Friday 18th October: Chick Lit Reviews and News

Monday 21st October: Chick Lit Chloe

Tuesday 22nd October:
Chick Lit Club

Wednesday 23rd October: One More Page

Thursday 24th October: Handwritten Girl

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