Wednesday, May 11, 2011

May in May and a giveaway!

**Giveaway is now closed**

Nicola May, author of Working it Out, tells us how she worked it out

Nicola May lives in the UK, in a town called Ascot, just a few miles from the Queen’s very own Windsor Castle. She shares her home with James the FiancĂ© and Patrick the Cat. Her hobbies include watching films that involve a lot of swooning, eating flapjacks and enjoying a flutter on the horses.

Nicola’s debut novel, Working it Out is out now. In relation to this novel, she has joined us today to talk about some of her craziest jobs on her journey to her dream job. She also has three copies to give away to some lucky readers anywhere in the world.

You can visit Nicola’s website, join her on Facebook and, of course, follow her on Twitter.

It has taken a lot of blood, sweat and Sauvignon Blanc to get where I am today, and I won’t lie in saying that getting a chick lit book published is easy, because it’s not. You have to be dedicated and allocate time whenever you can. Most importantly, your story has to be compelling.

I actually didn’t start writing until my thirties. I was working in PR at the time, loved a drink and smoked 20 a day and was dared to run a half marathon. I thought it would be quite funny to create a comedy diary of events throughout my tough training. Amazingly, I completed the marathon, but didn’t finish the diary. It did, however, give me the writing bug.

After my stint in PR, I did a lot of contract work in Event Management. Between major contracts I did do the odd temp job. It was when I was in a Portakabin in the middle of a field, with a mad Greek developer who swore and smoked constantly, that the idea struck - for someone to do twelve jobs in twelve months and see if they could find the one of her dreams.

Ruby doesn’t exactly copy my antics, as I have never worked in a buzzy Soho cafĂ©, as a divorce lawyer, funeral director or in a home for retired actors. However, I have had to do a moonlight flit to the cottage at the historic Cliveden, as there were not enough bedrooms for a late event delegate, and I did have to dress up as Nell Gwynn with bosoms overflowing to wait tables at a corporate function, as some staff didn’t show.

Possibly, my worst experience was working at a ‘pretend’ Lapland, dressed as an elf and being dragged constantly on to an ice rink by over excited children, when I couldn’t even skate or of course swear!

So when I started writing, I found it so therapeutic. I work from bed and the only people I have to answer to is my characters. Once I get started I don’t stop. I can write for six to eight hours and suddenly realise I haven’t eaten, and I love eating! I have been known to get up in the middle of the night if an idea suddenly hits.

It is such a wonderful feeling to type the words "The End." And, even more amazing when you get great feedback, especially from the likes of the talented Miranda Dickinson, who says:

I just wanted to say a massive congratulations on the publication of Working it Out. I was a big fan of your book when it was on Authonomy (the HarperCollins website for new writers), and I loved your writing style and brilliant characters. It now has pride of place on my Kindle as my Bank Holiday treat when I break from editing!”

Working it Out is the first novel I have self-published. I have two others waiting in the wings to see what response I get to this one, and I am currently writing my fourth. I did have an agent and went the traditional route with them, but to no avail. However, I read between the lines of a lot of positive rejections, re-wrote this one and took the plunge myself at a minimal cost.

Apart from becoming a bestselling author, my other dream is to be able to write the screenplay of Working it Out. I can see it already: Working it Out, a Working Title Film. Mr Curtis I hope you’re reading this as you would do a much better job.

And finally, I feel very honoured that Chick Lit Central contacted me for this interview, as I feel that self-published authors are sometimes not taken seriously. I am also very excited as I really believe in Working It Out, and just like Ruby, the central character, I think maybe I am about to embark on the job of my dreams...

Thanks to Nicola for sharing her adventures with us and for providing the books for the giveaway.


How to win "Working it Out":
Please comment below with your e-mail address.
(Please note: Entries without an e-mail address will NOT be counted. You can use AT and DOT to avoid spam. Or provide a link to your facebook page or blog if you can receive messages there.)

Bonus entries (can be listed all in one post):
1. Please tell us: If you could have the same job as any fictional character (book, movie, TV, etc.), whose job would you pursue?
2. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower (if you already follow, that's fine too).
3. Post this contest on Facebook or Twitter or in your blog, and leave a comment saying where you've posted it.
4.
Join Chick Lit Central on Facebook.
Edit settings if you don't want to receive a lot of messages at your e-mail account. (If you're already a member, let us know that too.)
5. Add a friend to our Facebook group. (Tell us who you added.) Be sure to remind them about editing their settings. :)

Giveaway ends May 17th at midnight EST.

45 comments:

Anonymous said...

Love the interview and giveaway.
msuck27@hotmail.co.uk

Lindsay said...

Thanks for the opportunity!
lindsay.castner@gmail.com

Lindsay said...

already a follower

Lindsay said...

I guess if I could have any job as a fictional character I'd love to be an author!

BRN2SHOP9 said...

I think I would want to be a detective like heather wells

BRN2SHOP9 said...

I follow via gfc

BRN2SHOP9 said...

I follow via facebook

Book Groupie said...

Sounds like a fun book! Please count me in.
Encgolsen@gmail.com

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read this novel....

i would like to be a tv news anchor...for a while

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

karenk said...

i'm a follower :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

karenk said...

please count me in this fabulous giveaway...thanks :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

PoCoKat said...

I would like to have Agatha Raisin's job running her own detective agency.

pocokat AT gmail DOT com

PoCoKat said...

GFC follower

pocokat AT gmail DoT com

PoCoKat said...

Belong to Chick Lit Central on fB

pocokat AT gmail DOt com

Nina said...

Boy, fiction characters typically have such great jobs! I think I'd go with anyone OTHER THAN The Devils Wears Prada or Stephanie Plum! haha
nina565(at(aol(dot)com

BrittanyGale said...

I don't know which fictional character I'd be in particular, but i'd be an author

quixoticdreamer(at)hotmail(dot)com

BrittanyGale said...

I am a follower via GFC quixoticdreamer

quixoticdreamer(at)hotmail(dot)com

BrittanyGale said...

Tweeted

http://twitter.com/#!/QuixoticWeetzie/status/68375693930676224

quixoticdreamer(at)hotmail(dot)com

BrittanyGale said...

I am a member on Facebook
Brittany Gale


quixoticdreamer(at)hotmail(dot)com

Jeryl M. said...

I would like to win this book.

jeryl.marcus@gmail.com

Jeryl M. said...

I would like to have the job of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle using magic to help people get over their bad habits.

I am a follower of this blog.

I am a facebook follower.

Jeryl.marcus@gmail.com

Linda Kish said...

Mary, U.S. Marshall on In Plain Sight

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Linda Kish said...

I am a GFC follower

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

anji beane said...

Sounds great! Thanks for the giveaway :)

anjibeane@comcast.net

I'm a follower :)

Sadly, the only fictional character's job that I can think of wanting at the moment is Spencer from iCarly on Nickelodeon. He makes interesting pop art out of various, usually recycled, objects, and gets to goof around the rest of the time, but somehow can afford a pretty sweet apartment. I'd love that job!

Posted on Facebook
http://www.facebook.com/anji.beane/posts/221441157867077

I'm already a member of the facebook group, too :)

Tiffany said...

This one sounds fun!
schlarmette(at)gmail(dot)com

Tiffany said...

I would have to be Kelly in HERE HOME HOPE. - job is homestaging

schlarmette(at)gmail(dot)com

Tiffany said...

already a follower..
schlarmette(at)gmail(dot)com

Tiffany said...

I'm posting this on my facebook fan page (A Cozy Reader's Corner)

schlarmette[at]gmail[dot]com

Tiffany said...

I am a facebook group member as well
schlarmette[at]gmail[dot]com

SpadesHigh said...

I would lik to be entered in this contest please!! =)
and i have a job: mommy & wife, nothing can top that! BUT! it would be nice to get paid though.

TValeros18 @ gmail DOT com
GFC Follower: SpadesHighReads
http://SpadesHighReads.blogspot.com

Thank you!!

Juliet Madison said...

Sounds like a great book!
jjmnp76(at)yahoo(dot)com(dot)au

I'm also a member on facebook ;)

Jane said...

I added my friend Jeanine to the group. She's the one who keeps our book club going.

sk8ersmom57@yahoo.com

Jane

Michelle said...

Great interview! It sounds like a fun book :)

I'm a follower of the blog.
I follow via FB
I tweeted! http://twitter.com/#!/hey_mikki

mmaclean3(at)yahoo(dot)ca

Anonymous said...

Sounds like such a cute book!

billiondollarprincesss@hotmail.com

Laura said...

I just discovered this blog and I'm already slightly obsessed with it.

leingles@vt.edu

JHS. said...

The glamorous road to being published . . . good grief! I think being the elf would have been the worst!

JHS
Colloquium

jhsmail at comcast dot net

JHS. said...

GFC follower.

JHS
Colloquium

jhsmail at comcast dot net

JHS. said...

FB member.

JHS
Colloquium

jhsmail at comcast dot net

JHS. said...

I already have the same job as many, many fictional characters in books, tv, and movies: I'm a lawyer. And NO, it is not as pretty as it looked on LA Law. :-) I don't go to any glamorous locations. I go to prison. :-)

JHS
Colloquium

jhsmail at comcast dot net

StereoQueenBee said...

I would totally be Serena in Gossip Girl, just to see what that life is like for once... (though I don't think I would last!)

I follow the blog, have posted the giveaway on FB and on Twitter (stereoqueenbee)

queenofcrunk at gmail dot com

Nancye said...

This sounds like a great book! Count me in! Thanks for the chance.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I always wanted to be a teacher like Laura Ingalls Wilder, and that's what I ended up becoming!

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

Follower

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I follow via Facebook

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

Tweet! Tweet!
@NancyeDavis

http://twitter.com/#!/NancyeDavis/status/70678867039363072

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net