The big day is almost here… The Snow Rose is about to arrive

The new book is due to be published on 1st December and I’m itching to get my hands on a finished copy. Even though I have a beautiful proof – see my photo of it above – it’s not the same. I can still admire the rather gorgeous ice-blue foil, though. Effects on covers are something that make authors very happy, especially foil with its touch of luxury. It’s somehow particularly appropriate when Christmas is just about upon us, and we’re looking for the dazzle of baubles and glitter and shiny colour to banish the darkness.

This is an exciting but scary moment – it’s all ahead right now: the fizz of the new book, its lovely unfamiliarity, the excitement of seeing what people think of it. But of course, no matter how often I go through it, I’m also afraid that this time something might go wrong. Maybe it won’t strike the right chord, the story won’t resonate, and people who were anticipating something good are disappointed. I have to remind myself to stay positive and have faith that it’s going to be okay. When I start thinking about the world inside The Snow Rose, I get pulled right back into it and that’s usually a good sign. If the place and the characters inside a book come to life so strongly in my mind that I feel I could walk around it and talk to the people inside it, then I hope that means it will spring to life inside the minds of others too.

This was a difficult book to write in some ways, because the atmosphere is more mysterious than usual. Spending a lot of time in that world means that it can soak in and affect exterior life more than you might expect. I can wonder why I’m suddenly depressed or elated, or cold or hungry, and recall that I’ve been invoking those things all day for someone else. That’s a side effect of a vivid imagination – that thing writers and avid readers share in spades. Living in the world you are creating can have odd consequences: one year I remembered with horror that I hadn’t sent a good friend of mine a Christmas card – until I realised she was the main character of my novel. Panic over. I could send an imaginary one.

I really hope readers enjoy The Snow Rose as much as I did writing it. Nothing in the post today. Maybe tomorrow…