Coming soon – The Land Far Away… once I can wrest it away from the children that is!

I had a wonderful parcel arrive today.  The plain cardboard sleeve protected the proof copy of the book that Maria K. and I have been collaborating on for over a year and a half now.

That’s right, the first book of “The Land Far Away” series is almost available to purchase!

But back to the parcel… I wanted so much to sit down and savour the feeling of holding the first printed copy of our work in my hands.

The silly little rhymes that my children and I had come up with while NOS was doing his homework; the characters that the children created for me; the pictures that linked me with my friend in NC… All of these things make this particular book incredibly special for me.

So I pulled it out of its packaging carefully and sighed over the smooth, shiny cover and thick, smooth paper of the pages. I began to read the clear writing and marvel at Maria’s bright pictures…

“MUMMY!” the children thundered down the stairs and into the room like a herd of Skruffs. They caught sight of the book in my hands.

“Is that MY Pika book?” PT demanded.

“It was MY rhymes that mummy used.” NOS snapped at his sister.

“Pika is MY character! She’s soft and pink and fluffy, just like me.” PT stamped her foot.

“You can’t read properly, so it’s MY book.” NOS replied smugly.

The two of them fetched up in front of me, looking down on the pages. I looked up at them, raising one eyebrow at them.

“Who wrote the book?” I asked.

“You did.” NOS answered sullenly.

“No. We all did. You, your sister, me and Maria. We all wrote this book together. It was a…”

“Team effort?” PT asked.

I looked at NOS.

He shrugged. “I suppose so.”

I rolled my eyes, but he didn’t seem to register my expression. “I tell you what, why don’t you go read it to your sister.” The kids glanced at each other and shouted “YES” loud enough to be heard in the village centre.

I laughed and handed it to them. “Here you go then. Go careful with it please.”

They dashed away upstairs, book in hand.

I followed behind quietly with the camera and waited until they were engrossed in the story, before I snapped a photo to mark the occasion.

The kids road testing the book...

Isn’t it pretty?

If you’re interested in what the book is about, then check out “The Land Far Away” page in my bookshop.

I think having the proof copy is one of the more emotional experiences in my writing career. It’s the fulfillment of mine and Maria’s efforts and having it in my hands is a wonderful experience.

Now all we have to do is get it out there to be bought and hope that people like it enough! The thought of someone actually buying it gives me butterflies in my tummy!

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