Sunday, 26 March 2017

Guest Post: One Piece of Advice I Wish I'd Been Given by Bella Osborne

If you're an eagle-eyed follower of the blog you'll have noticed that I have been part of the blog tours for parts 1 & 2 for Bella Osborne's Willow Cottage series so when I was invited to be part of the blog tour for part 3 A Spring Affair I didn't hesitate to say yes.

Thank you for being on the blog tour, it’s great to be here today.

I have been asked to write a piece about the one piece of advice I wish I’d been given when I started writing. Seriously they want me to pick just one piece of advice?! I’ve decided it’s too hard so here’s 5 pieces of advice that would have helped me at various stages of my writing journey.

1 – When I started writing. Seeing as I was circa ten years old when I started writing stories the advice I wish I’d had then is a little different to the advice I would appreciate later on in life. So to my ten year old self I wish somebody had said – This isn’t normal. The reason I wish they had told me this is because I spent many years assuming that everyone elses brain worked the same as mine. That they too were making up stories about the people around them. That they also had these ideas that had to be written down straight away and characters that got into the most amazing scrapes and went on unbelievable adventures. It would have helped me to rein it in at times and not look like a total nut job.

2 – As a teenager looking at career choices. At this stage in my life I would have liked someone to tell me – Being a writer is a valid career option. It was always seen as my odd little hobby and it took years before I did anything about it. People like me simply didn’t become writers. If only I’d known that it was a valid career choice perhaps my life path would have turned out differently, who knows?

3 – Pre mummy me. I have no idea what on earth I used to do with the immense amount of time I had to myself before our daughter came along. I wish someone had advised me to make the most of this time and get writing. If there are no words being written then your story is going nowhere.

4 – Post mummy me. The amount of time I had been using to write evaporated overnight and I agreed with myself that I wouldn’t be able to write again because it was just a hobby and a time filler. If only someone had given me a kick up the bum and told me that you need to write, it’s part of who you are. Because knowing that would have made me feel like I hadn’t lost something very special to me.

5 – Generally. The best piece of advice I wish I had been given is connect with other writers. Other writers are really the only people who will totally get you. Your family love you (they have to) but unless they are writers they will not fully understand the voices in your head and forgive them for being mildly concerned about this. Joining a local writing class and the Romantic Novelists’ Association were two pivotal points for me because I was suddenly surrounded by similar people and that is both a huge relief and a wonderful support.

This is probably the one piece of advice that I was meant to write about but, hey, I’m a writer this is what I do!

Beth is running away. With her young son Leo to protect, Willow Cottage is the lifeline she so desperately needs. Overlooking the village green in a beautiful Cotswolds idyll, Beth sees a warm, caring and safe place for little Leo.

When she finally uncovers the cottage from underneath the boughs of a weeping willow tree, Beth realises this is far more of a project than she bargained for and the locals are more than a little eccentric! A chance encounter with gruff Jack, who appears to be the only male in the village under thirty, leaves the two of them at odds but it’s not long before Beth realises that Jack has hidden talents that could help her repair more than just Willow Cottage

Over the course of four seasons, Beth realises that broken hearts can be mended, and sometimes love can be right under your nose…

Willow Cottage is part of a serialized novel told in four parts, following the journey of Beth and her new life in the Cotswolds. The full book will be out next this August, but for now, enjoy Willow Cottage seasonally.