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Scary First Steps

I’m typing this week’s blog while my printer merrily whirs back and forth beside me, the pages of my novel appearing one by one in a neat little stack.  It’s tempting to just sit and watch it work.  After all the time and effort that has gone into the words that are now etched on the fresh white sheets of paper, it feels like a truly momentous occasion.  My novel is complete.

Well almost. 


My novel may be written, but it’s a long way from the end of its journey.  The stack of A4 pages is not quite the same as the bound book with a stunning cover that I envisage when I lie awake at night.

In fact as the pile grows higher and higher that sense of magic that I’d felt when I clicked on the print button dissipates a little more, as nerves take over.

At the beginning of the year I was fortunate to join the Romantic Novelist Association’s New Writers Scheme.  Part of the benefits of joining such a prestigious group, is the ability to have my novel reviewed.  Hence the printing….

All 211 pages will soon be carefully packed in a padded envelope and sent on their way.  While they spend the next few weeks of their life being read, critiqued and hopefully loved, I will spend those weeks in a nervous meltdown.

I’m suddenly conscious of the sound of my keyboard tapping while I type, which draws my attention to my now silent printer.  It’s finished.  My novel is printed.  Oh no, wait…  It’s just run out of ink.   Thankfully, I’m the obsessively organised type who just happens to have a spare ink cartridge.

After much clicking, clunking and other disconcerting noises, my printer resumes is duties and my novel continues to emerge from fantasy to reality.

With three sheets of paper spare, my printer goes back to sleep and my novel heads off into the big wide world.  Maybe this is what it feels like to watch your children go off to their first day at school.  They’re off on their adventures, while you stand by the school gate worrying if they’ll make new friends, or fall flat on their faces.  

Here’s hoping it’s not the latter….