My Author Journey

By Daisy White, author of Before I Found You


I gave up writing this time last year. At 41 I had a bit of a mid-life crisis and decided that it was time to admit I was never going to be able to make my living writing books.     

Almost exactly a year ago I started working for the ambulance service. Five months later I had an Amazon bestseller with ‘Before I Found You’, published by UK independent Joffe Books. ‘Before I Found You’ stayed in the overall Amazon top 100 for five weeks, and suddenly I was back in business, inspiration and hope had returned, and much as I enjoyed my new job, I had to return to writing.

I had just finished a new psychological thriller, set in LA and Wales, ‘Remember Me’ and headed off to a day with The Author School. I had a sneaking feeling it might be the best thing I had written so far... but, well, you know if you are reading this as a writer, that there is always another little voice that says, ‘What have you been wasting your time on? This is rubbish!’

It wasn’t rubbish. The Author School day included advice on the all-important submission package, with tips from best-selling author Gillian McAllister, and literary agent Clare Wallace. I went home, and spent the next month polishing. A flight to LA was perfect for finishing that last chapter. The last line came to me about halfway across the Atlantic, and I just thought ‘Yes, that’s exactly what you would say. That’s perfect.’

Within six weeks of sending out ‘Remember Me’ I had multiple contractual offers, and the most amazing feedback I have ever had on a book. I don’t have an agent, so when I submitted I sent my manuscript to both agents, and those publishers who allowed unsolicited manuscripts. Interestingly, much of the interest from agents was from those based in the US, and in the end I had to decide whether to sign with a literary agent, or go ahead and sign direct with a publisher. Gut feeling, and advice from Abiola and Helen, meant I eventually signed a two-book deal with HarperCollins imprint HQ Digital.

So I’m back to being a writer, and I’m working on my second psychological thriller. At the same time, I have finished and sent the third book in The Ruby Baker Mysteries to Joffe Books, first edits have come back and been returned on ‘Remember Me’ and the kids have been home for the summer holidays.

It’s organised chaos, but instead of feeling I have to justify any time spent writing, I can now concentrate on making every word count. As a reader, I want to read the best an author can throw at me, so as a writer I want to send out the best I can.

There is a wall chart in the spare room, aka my writing room, and it is slowly filling up with editing deadlines, first draft deadlines, speaking engagements, meetings and blog deadlines. Finally I have a growing business doing what I love, and I count myself as very lucky to have got this far. I’m super excited to see what the future holds.

Remember Me is out Feb 6th 2019 as an eBook, audio book, and paperback, published by HQ Digital and will be available for pre-order;

Helen AbiolaComment