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The power of collaboration

Let’s talk about collaboration, and how powerful – and scary! – it can be.

To be honest, I’ve always been more of a ‘hide away and write till I feel happy it’s nearly done’ writer. When I read about writers who expose their tender first drafts to multiple readers, it makes me feel very anxious for them…

But then along came The Grief Handbook, and I honestly didn’t know if the first draft was any good. So I asked my dear kindred spirit writer Jess Fox and she gave me the most loving, helpful feedback. As she did with the second draft – one of the pieces of feedback being to have sections (like The Early Days, pictured here). I didn’t know I needed sections till Jess told me, I didn’t know they needed to be so pretty till illustrator extraordinaire Lauren Fowler drew them, I didn’t know they were colouring in pages till my son created this masterpiece (he’s very into colour at the moment and I am all over it!)

And then of course there’s the Big Collaboration – with your editor. Somehow the stars aligned and I ended up with the fabulous Anya Hayes from Watkins. Let me tell you, it was a joy from start to finish. How lucky to have found an editor who pushed me to make the book 100% itself, but in the most gentle, kind and empathetic way.

I suppose my point here is that although some things need quiet space to grow, if they are going to flourish we have to expose them to air, and sunshine. *Gentle* air and sunshine…

Published inInspiring

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