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  • Portland Jones

The first book

It seems like I’ve been writing this book forever. Life has a nasty habit of getting in the way of writing. It throws stuff at you till you can no longer juggle everything. Something has to fall to the ground. And usually it’s the writing, because you have to earn money, to feed the family, to have clean pants in the drawer, food in the fridge. You make time to care for the family, the partner, the children, the grandchildren, the dog.

Then something changes. Sometimes it’s a natural progression, the kids grow up, learn to cook for themselves, the dog learns how to open his own can. Sometimes it’s a catastrophic life change. I’ll tell you about mine someday.

And now the book is finished. I’ve nursed it, changed it, cried over it, loved it and been scared for it. The hard part is having to let it go, out on its own in the big wide world. What if no-one loves it? If they ignore it? Or worse if they hate it.

I decided to self-publish so I could still make decisions for my baby. I can keep a close eye on its progress, give it a tweak, a helping hand if things aren’t working out right for it. I fearfully entered a new world that I didn’t know existed. Of course I’d heard rumours but now I had to face it head on. I learned a new language – am still learning it actually. I had to make decisions when I didn’t really understand the options. I muddled my way through.

And on 21st February the e-book version of my first novel – The Face in the Bathroom Floor – was made available to pre-order, with a release date of 20th March, the Spring Equinox. This seemed a good day to me, a day for a fresh start. With a considerably greater amount of stress and trial and error, the paperback version made it to life on 25th February.

Now the hard work starts. The marketing. The letting people know that I have written a book and they can buy it and read it. It feels strange, going out there and bragging about what you’ve achieved, but unless I do this my poor baby will languish without ever having been read.

So forgive me if I shout from the rooftops. This is as exciting as it is nerve wracking. And I’m sure I will make plenty of mistakes along the way. I will keep you updated.

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