I'm so excited to be able to show you this photo at last!
Yep, this is the finished manuscript for Unfree - the sequel to Humanless. I'm shipping it off to the editors next week and hopefully it will be published on Amazon very soon!
Writing a sequel has been a completely different experience than writing the first book. With Humanless I was free to procrastinate as much as I wanted and didn't have any expectations to match. With Unfree I knew I had to write a better book and develop the story further on so many levels. I didn't have any readers when I published Humanless because it was my first full-length novel but now there are so many lovely people who liked it and who have been so incredible and supportive. I owe it to them to write a good book and continue the story. All that put pressure on me and I was putting off writing it, finding an excuse after excuse for the 'lack of time'. But then, just like in the movies, I woke up one lovely, sunny morning (which is a miracle on its own since I live in London) and thought: 'Enough is enough! I need to finish this book because otherwise my head is going to burst'. The story was there, I just needed to get a grip, sit on my butt and write it.
So I did. I wrote for hours on end each day, completely ignoring my family, my friends, TV, etc. I booked an editor and a cover artist so that I knew there was no way out of this - this book was getting written if it killed me. I even invented a reward system - if I wrote 5000 words today, I'd watch 2 'White Collar' episodes tonight. And it worked. The above photo is the proof.
Finishing Unfree felt so exhilarating! I'm walking around with a huge grin on my face and feel so good! It was hard starting over - going from a finished, edited and polished manuscript back to staring at the blank Word document. But I pulled through and overcame the 'second book blues'.
To everyone who emailed me or sent me a message via Twitter of Facebook, etc - THANK YOU! You gave me the push and support I needed and if it weren't for you (and Neal Caffrey) I wouldn't be holding a finished manuscript in my hands right now.
I can safely say that it would get easier from now on. I know I can't wait to sit down and write the final book and I also have 2 more ideas pending - one of which is for contemporary romance. I absolutely love writing, despite all hardships, and if I had any doubts that I'll be able to do this as a full time job for the rest of my life, I have none now.
Hopefully next week the cover will be ready because I know it's going to be great and I can't wait to show it to you!