Secrets of a bestselling author

author Lesley Cookman
Lesley Cookman

I’m so grateful to my long-time friend Lesley Cookman for revealing some of the secrets of a bestselling novelist‘s life. Read today’s guest blog to see what you have in common with her, and get a sneak preview of the cover of her next book (which won’t be published for months yet).

Lesley is the author of the Libby Serjeant series of murder mysteries, with the eighteenth recently published – Murder by the barrel. Each new book whizzes to the top of its category on the Amazon bestseller charts, but despite Lesley’s success, the writing life is still not easy. But it is rewarding… Read Lesley’s guest blog here – and do ask questions in the ‘comments’ bit!

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The place to get inspiration for your writing

English: Collage of photos of authors
Collage of authors (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Where do you get your ideas?”

This is the question most asked of writers, at conferences, book launches, festivals – wherever authors meet would-be authors.

For those who spit out ideas without really trying, it’s a tough question to answer – the ideas just come, usually too many of them to use.

If you’re itching to have a go at a novel or a screenplay, but can’t find an idea to fire you up, it’s frustrating to be told that ideas are everywhere. But don’t be fooled by writers who tell you the ideas are flocking like ants around honey. Long-established, successful, famous authors hit blocks too. Think of the agonising pressure on a best-selling writer whose Muse has shoved off; facing the blank page when the publisher is thumping a desk shouting ‘deadline!’ and the advance has been spent already…

Blocks happen at any stage. The central idea for the new book before a word is written; part-way through the book when the story runs out of steam; a hero who won’t co-operate; no hint of an ending; a good main plot but no subplots; wooden characters; horrible dialogue… the bear pits lurk on every page.

This site is devoted to showing you how to release your imagination from its cage, unblock the flow of ideas, and touch a spark to the blue paper of your creativity.

Now the metaphors are nicely mixed, my work here is done.

Tell me what you need, what you don’t want to be told, where you’re stuck and I’ll try to address your particular problems as best I can.