Latest updates

We have sold HOW many books???

Monday, 6 November 2017

Hello again,

I have very exciting news.

As you know, The Sewing Machine was published on 17th April this year. As an author, I had a vague idea about how the book was selling, but a lot of that was based on hopes and dreams, cautiously tempered with a healthy dollop of common sense. Authors not knowing how things are going is pretty normal across the publishing world, as far as I know. 


Please Vote in #NotTheBookerPrize

Tuesday, 1 August 2017


I am delighted and chuffed and honoured that we, Team Sewing Machine, have been included in The Guardian's Not The Booker Prize Long List which was published on Monday.  A hundred and fifty books are on it, and one of them is The Sewing Machine.  The list was created from nominations from the public, so if one of those nominations came from you, THANK YOU!

You know what I am going to say…

Photos, reviews, book launch and a road trip

Friday, 21 April 2017


We are published!

I'm not using the royal 'we', I mean all of us in Team Sewing Machine. WE DID IT, and you are all part of it. Your names are in the front and back of the book and although many of us have not met, I feel as though I know you.

The book is getting some great reviews on Goodreads here.

And it has some lovely amazon reviews as well.


The paperbacks are now "in…

We did it!

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

On Tuesday, the imaginary PRINT button was pushed and my book, OUR book, yours and mine, went into production. 

Today you should get an email with several download links to suit whichever device you want to read it on. 

Scrumple up the weekend To Do list, bribe the children, order a takeaway and find somewhere comfortable to sit... there is a book to be read.

When it actually happened, I…

Final proofs

Friday, 17 February 2017


I'm pleased to be able to say that we are almost there. 

The first round of proofs have been done, and I'm just waiting for the the final page proof copy. At this stage it's really a case of:

'Has my name been spelled correctly?'


'Is there a full stop at the end of the book?'

The cover is being finalised as I speak and I hope to be able to show it to you very soon.

Fot those…

The final stage...

Friday, 9 December 2016

Exciting times!

I apologise for being quiet here in the shed, and can assure you it's because I've been working very hard to make this book the best it can possibly be.

The manuscript has been through the copy-edit stage, and has been returned to Unbound this morning to be proofread. The end is tantalisingly in sight.

I've done the acknowledgements - a surprisingly stressful experience. When…

The developmental edit is finished

Friday, 21 October 2016

This is a quick blogpost to let you know that the developmental edit is now finished and the manuscript has been sent off for copy editing. `

The cover is being designed as I write, and there are other secret and exciting things happening which I can't tell you about yet. Maddening, isn't it?'

We have closed off the yarn and thread options now and I have a list of the names of everyone who …

Not judging a book by the cover.

Monday, 3 October 2016

Hello again. 

It seems as though this stage of book publishing is like waiting for the proverbial bus. Nothing seems to happen for ages and then all the buses arrive at the same time.

My second structural edit is back and there are only minor changes to make. I've been doing a full read-through, which takes longer than you might think because I'm reading it out loud. Yes, Boris the Labrador…

As Adele would sing...

Sunday, 28 August 2016


After spending several weeks structually editing the manuscript of The Sewing Machine, which involved more investment in the Post It note division of 3M than I would have thought possible, I have typed THE END and sent it back to Celine to look at for a second time. 

Editing is a weird business. 

You write a story.

You read it.

You realise that bits of it are ALL WRONG.


The editing continues...

Thursday, 7 July 2016

Hello again everyone, and a warm welcome to my new supporters - Maureen Wilkins, Sakthi Norton, Riccardo Sartori, Pamela Hilton and Janet Lees. 

Things have been a bit quiet around here on the blog, but that doesn't mean nothing is happening with the book. 

In the middle of May I sent the manuscript off to the person who is doing the Structural Edit and then I went on holiday for two weeks,…

Manuscript sent for editing!

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

I'm really chuffed to tell you that Celine Kelly is going to be editing my book.

Celine has worked at Penguin and Headline and has edited novels by Marian Keyes, Jane Green and Jane Fallon, who have between them sold more than 35 million books. 

As you can imagine, I'm a bit star struck!

The novel has been read again, several times - I realised only last week that I had somehow called one character…

100% and counting

Thursday, 21 April 2016

I'm delighted to be able to say that we have done it, you and me, and a hundred and seventy other people. 

We have coaxed, shuffled and in the final hour, wheeeeeeee'd this book over the funding finish line, like a child on a bike with legs stuck out on either side as they barrel down the most exciting hill EVER.

It took 33 days from the time it went live on the Unbound website, to move it from…

Chapter excerpt - meet Fred.

Thursday, 31 March 2016

Hello again.

Today I thought I'd introduce you to Fred. As a contemporary character, he has a very different voice in the novel. 

The story of the sewing machine and the secrets it holds are woven between the past and the present. As the reader, sometimes you will discover things before Fred does, and you'll be sitting there saying "Come on, why can't you see what's going on?".

On other occasions…

Books are better than chocolate!

Thursday, 24 March 2016

Hello again.

As I write this, above the gubbins which says "Write a new blog post", there is a green disc which shows me that we have raised more than half of the pledges needed to make this book into a published novel.

You can probably see it too.  

In among the slivers which make up the dark green wedge are pledges by Unbounders, by friends and family, and by people I have only met online…

Welcome to the Shed

Friday, 18 March 2016

A shed is a wonderful thing - a place to shelter from the wettest of rain, or somewhere to sit and muse about the world quietly. We won't mention the weeding.

So, slip your wellies off and put them on the newspaper beside the door and draw up a chair or flop down on that sofa over there. I’ll put the kettle on for tea or coffee.

This book was launched just ten hours ago on Unbound, and I can…

Publication date: TBC
116% funded
267 backers