Plot twist: It’s real. Really, really real.

Happy New Year! It’s now 2015; the year Richard III will finally be properly interred; the year I will take heavy, heavy advantage of my Historic Palaces annual pass; the year of the Sheep; the year the onesie is outlawed (hopefully).

The year The Sin Eater’s Daughter comes out.

That probably shouldn’t have been a surprise to me, but it turns out that it was. It’s not as though I’ve been lacking evidence of it; I have a contract; I have proof editions; It’s been available for pre-order; It’s had reviews. I’ve even planned a launch party. The date has been set for a long time; Spring 2015, the book will come out. That was always the plan.

And yet, until last week, I didn’t quite believe it.

So what changed that?

These guys did.

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Actual books

A whole box of them, arriving at my house. With my name on the spine, and the cover. My dedication at the front, my acknowledgements in the back.

The story I wrote in between them.

Now it seems real. Now I understand that this is my dream, coming true, live, right now. In twenty-four days it’ll (hopefully) be on shelves in the UK, and (hopefully) dropping through letterboxes. People will be able to hand over bits of metal or paper and get a copy in return. It will be read. With a little luck, it’ll be enjoyed. There is no turning back.

The book is coming.

Suddenly it’s very real.

Suddenly I’m being sent really amazing interview questions, and being asked to go to events. People are tweeting at me to tell me they liked it. People want to talk to me about it, they want me to talk about it.

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Book Selfie

Naturally, I’m terrified. For so long it was mine. My book, my story. Then it was mine and a few trusted readers. Then mine, trusted readers and Claire’s (my agent). Then it was mine, TR’s, Claire’s and Scholastic’s. And in twenty-four days it will be mine, TR’s, Claire’s, Scholastic’s, and the world’s. It’s without doubt the strangest, most brilliant, bonkers, exciting, petrifying thing that’s ever happened to me. I never thought it could happen, and now it is.

I’ve spent a lot of time imaging what it might be like if this particular dream came true and I have to say, the reality is even better. When I imagined it, I didn’t include the amazing people I’d meet along the way, or the things I’d learn, or see, or do. I didn’t think any further than the book.

So it was quite a shock when the one thing that had always been the focus became the most impossible thing of all. But now, they’re here: I have copies of my own book.                 I can give copies to the people who love me, I can give copies away in contests. My book. It’s real.

This post, more than anything, is for me. For posterity. So I can remember how it felt in the run up to publication.

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This was a real feature, in a real supplement, in a real newspaper. REAL.

And, for the record, it feels fizzy. In the good way.

 

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