These are the good days – when cupcakes arrive because you have given birth to a book into the big wide world! They are also very weird days. Months of hard work and anticipation – and then it’s out there – gone – left home for good and there is nothing you can do to determine it’s destiny.
I first pitched the idea behind The Wife Who Got A Life in December 2018 at my agents Christmas drinks party! I bumped into her on the stairs whilst she was holding her baby daughter and whittered on about wanting to write a funny book about a a forty-eight year old woman. Perhaps my timing wasn’t great, and I knew I was waffling, but nearly two and half years later- here we are with a real book in my hands!
By the end January 2019 I’d written some opening chapters of what was then titled, Diary of a Midlife Wife. It started with a tirade about women having to have periods in their forties. I was clearly getting some angst out about this issue! Reactions from early readers was lukewarm. Maybe starting with periods on page one was too much I asked myself. I tussled with her journey until September of that year when a good chunk was drafted. There was some good stuff in there everyone said. I was trampling all over the issues facing middle-aged women with a dose of sarcasm and wit but I still felt it needed an extra edge to make it stand out. Something to make it more than the tale of your bog standard midlife crisis.
And so it was back to where I started. Back to periods would you believe? Cathy, in my original opening chapter, sets herself a mission to ‘ditch periods’ because, well, she just doesn’t need them anymore! Which got me thinking. What other things could she change about her life that could make it simply better. They didn’t have to be big, just kind of obvious, or fun or in some cases absolutely bloody essential, and long overdue. And so Cath works out a series of monthly goals that will help her get her life back and enjoy herself during this rather tricky stage of life.
Along the way there are adventures including fish fingers, a dog called Barbra Streisand, a T-shirt with an interesting slogan, as well as a whole lot of laughs and maybe just a few tears.
I’m really pleased with the end result and I really hope you enjoy it. I’ve loved writing it and now I’m just off to try and do some of the things Cathy has done to make my life better. Happy reading!!
The Wife Who Got A Life is published by Harper Collins and is available here