Instruction For Failing In Love
What would you do if your late husband left you a list of instructions on how to fall in love with someone else?
Pippa Browning is faced with this exact dilemma, three years after the death of her husband, Dan.
Buried at the bottom of a drawer are a collection of notebooks full of Dan’s advice on how to live without him.
Pippa’s notebook is red and contains his instructions on how to fall in love again.
But Dan does n’t just want Pippa to fall in love with anyone – Dan’s crazy suggestion is that Pippa should date his handsome friend, Mikey Stenton, a known thrill-seeking ladies’ man.
Reluctant to follow Dan’s advice, Pippa enters the world of dating. She embarks on a humorous journey of self-discovery, with the help of her children and two best friends.
It isn’t long before Pippa is finding it hard to ignore Dan’s instructions and Mikey Stenton.
Is Mikey really the man that everyone thinks him to be? Or was Dan right, and Mikey’s simply been misunderstood?
A heart-warming romantic comedy about motherhood, friendship and finding love, the second time around.
I first became aware of Lucy through her amusing blog posts and then progressed to following her on social media platforms! I am forever screaming why hasn’t this women got a book deal!!!! So I was so happy to hear she was heading into the world of self-publishing and her book baby is HERE!
Q1: What inspired you to write Instructions For Failing In Love
In the second year of our marriage, my husband was diagnosed with Lymphoma; a cancer of the lymphatic system. At the time we were both 27 years of age. He went through many rounds of chemo and radiotherapy and he endured a lot of gruesome tests, scans and consultations. It was the most frightening year of our life together. We drank a lot of hospital tea, Googled the hell out of his illness, scared ourselves witless with what Google returned, relocated to Wales to be with his family, tried to carry on with normal life whilst he went for chemo, went to the pub a lot and laughed when we felt like crying. Twelve months later he got the all clear. He’s alive and well today and in 2013 he ran the London Marathon to raise money for the cancer charity he supports.
Mad as it sounds but the idea for my debut novel, Instructions For Falling In Love Again, started back when our life was in turmoil. But, I wasn’t ready to become a writer back then so I locked it away at the back of my mind.
When he ran the London Marathon, to celebrate 10 years in remission, back came my memories from when he was sick and so did the idea for a novel. My husband started carrying a little red notebook to record his training schedule. He also left us all instructions on the fridge and creating wall planners to get us all organised. So, I decided to start writing Pippa’s story.
Q2: If you could go back to when you first started writing what one piece advice would you give yourself?
Not everyone will like your work. Some will and some won’t. Writing is subjective and getting hung up on this is a waste of time.
Q3: What would you say to someone who wants to write?
Q4: If you weren’t writing what would you be doing?
Talking a lot and making people laugh. I think laughter is so important.
Q5: What are your writing routines?
I don’t really have one. All I know is that when a story comes to me I will binge write it in a few weeks. When I am writing I lock myself away in my head and drive my family crazy. I have been known to leave social gatherings, baby showers and shopping trips after getting an idea to write about.
Q6: Why did you decide to self-publish?
I always knew my writing path would be different. I had an inkling I would end up going in a different direction to others.
Becoming a Featured Romance author on Wattpad and my Roxy Collins series gaining 70,000 followers and 250,000 reads in 3 months, gave me some confidence to start out on my own.
This was fuelled by a lot of positive rejections from literary agents and publishers.
When I was suffering from anxiety and my life felt bleak I knew I had to let the light back in. Writing is my light. The day after I decided to go for it and self-publish, I won a competition run by Emma Mitchell and Sarah Hardy. The prize was a free proofread and blog book tour. It was like the universe was now on my side. Weirdly everything fell into place at an alarming speed. I met my book designer two days later and within a week I had my amazing book cover.
Self-publishing has brought the light back into my life. This is not about climbing the best seller charts. For me, it is about putting my art into the world and getting to talk romance with readers.
I now have eyebrows too 🙂 (see question 10)
Q7: What writing tools do use, and which one could you not live without?
- The Emotional Thesaurus by Angela Akerman & Becca Puglisi.
- 10 Steps to Hero by Sacha Black.
- Writing friends
Q8: Which authors inspired you to write?
Nicola May. She’s shown the world what self-published authors can achieve and her books are excellent.
Q9: Who would you want to play the main characters in your book if your novel was optioned for tv / film?
Pippa should be played by Jessica Biel. I think she’s naturally beautiful and even in old clothes she would still look amazing.
Mikey should be played by Liam Hemsworth. A handsome bad boy with a secret good heart.
Q10: Tell me something about yourself your readers might not know.
At the start of this year I lost my eyebrows and chunks of my hair due to stress. Up until this point I thought stress was something other people suffered from.
My life was filled with anxiety and dark feelings. It didn’t feel like I was in control anymore. So, I decided to change my life. I listed out all the things which were making me unhappy. One of them was letting my writing gather dust in folders after being showered with rejections. It felt like I was writing for my electronic folders. This was making me depressed.
So, I decided to be brave and grabbed control of my life. In one month I found another job (after nine years in the same role), got rid of my company car, went on holiday with my friends and sent my book to an editor.
By the start of May my eyebrows were coming back and my hair had stopped falling out. It is now June and I can’t believe how I have transformed my life.
Thank you Lucy x
Lucy Mitchell lives in South Wales with her husband, two teenage daughters, a giant Labrador and a gang of unruly cats. She lives in a house with two front doors (which challenges a lot of door-to-door sales agents) and drives a little white car (at a snail’s pace) called Fabby.
When she’s not working or writing, she can be found listening to audiobooks in a muddy field with her dog or sat outside her local pub in the sunshine enjoying a glass of wine.