Hello and thank you for visiting my author page!
You know, I always wanted to write novels from the moment I learned to read but it took me until the age of forty-six to actually finish one – The Mistress’s Revenge - and another year to see it published.
There are loads of reasons for the delay – admittedly some better than others. I was working as a freelance journalist which went some way towards satisfying the writing itch. I had three children and needed the paid income freelance writing provided which left little time for anything else. I’d never had any creative writing training, so though I was expert at two-thousand-word magazine articles I had no clue how to sustain a book over three hundred and fifty pages in terms of pacing and plot.
But the real reason, I suspect, was I simply lacked the confidence to see a full-length book through to the end. Someone very astute once said that writing a novel is one per cent inspiration and ninety-nine per cent holding your nerve, and that’s precisely what I hadn’t learned to do.
The upshot was I started book after book, only to abandon each one after ten thousand words, not sure what direction to go in or whether anyone would be interested in reading it, let alone paying me an advance for it.
In 2010, three things happened:
• The print media industry fell off a cliff, meaning fewer magazine/newspaper commissions and my income nosedived.
• I had a bout of depression and insomnia, exacerbated by worry over the future now that my journalistic career looked so shaky, which meant I started writing at night just to fill those awful, endless pre-dawn hours.
• I came up with a new book idea about a spurned mistress who starts stalking her former lover’s family
This time when I reached my usual ten-thousand-word brick wall, I sent what I’d written so far to an agent at Curtis Brown, the utterly brilliant Felicity Blunt who is still my agent today. She agreed to meet me and told me a) the extract I’d sent showed promise and b) to go away and finish it.
Four months later I’d written a book. Three months after that I had a book deal.
Who says dreams don’t come true?
Since The Mistress’s Revenge was published in 2011, I’ve written another nine contemporary novels: War of the Wives, Someone Else’s Wedding, The Broken, Dying for Christmas, First One Missing, When She Was Bad, They All Fall Down and Stop at Nothing.
I’ve also written three historical mysteries under my pseudonym of Rachel Rhys: Dangerous Crossing (a Richard & Judy pick), Fatal Inheritance and Island of Secrets. Plus I’ve squeezed in a Quick Read called Clean Break.
You might say I’ve been making up for lost time.
If you’re a struggling writer wondering if it will ever happen for you, I want to say please take heart from my story and don’t give up. Keep producing, keep creating, keep dreaming big.
Because this new, much longed-for career came to me so late, I never ever take it for granted. And because I spent the best part of five decades as a reader first and foremost (and remain so today) I value my own readers more than I can say. So do get in touch. You can find me on:
• Twitter (@msTamarCohen)
• Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/MsTamarCohen/)
• Instagram (@tammycohenwriter)
You can also subscribe to my newsletter at www.tammycohen.co.uk. I only send it out when I have something to say so you won’t be bombarded with emails, but there are giveaways and extra material and some behind the scenes information about my books.
Hope to see you soon!
Other Books By This Author
Dying for Christmas
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