It’s been a while since my last blog post, but little did I know way back then, what the world would be facing in the year that is 2020.
We are only 8 months in and for many it has been life-changing.
My heart and my prayers go out to all those who’ve lost their lives and way of lives because of the Coronavirus, Covid-19 worldwide pandemic.
Being on partial or full lockdown for all those weeks has effected people differently.
Some where happy spending more time with their loved ones, others learned how to bake banana bread, whilst some felt the huge weight of isolation. However, if you’re reading this now, it means that you managed to get through to reach this day.
And although we’re not all the way through this pandemic yet- we can only take one day at a time.
I spent a lot of time, praying, writing (eating way too much) and working as a psychotherapist. Working in mental health is a job I feel honoured to be able to do and in these times is/was something that is needed.
Like many I know people that have been impacted by this terrible virus and I know someone who lost their life (darling Indra).
Everyone has their own story.
But even if you haven’t been directly impacted, you will hopefully feel a good level of empathy towards those who have. God bless every single one of you.
It’s good to be ‘back’.
Hey, you know what I’m like- I update this blog, like yearly. However, you can usually catch me on Twitter.
Hey all, check out this wonderful cover for my new novel Wartime Sweethearts which is out April 18th. I was actually standing in the corner cooing like a proud aunt as the photographer took these lovely shots. There is nothing much weirder than seeing the characters who have lived in your head for months, suddenly turn up in human form!
I am thrilled with the end result -I hope you are too!
A English Girl. An American Soldier. A twin secret…
When Rose meets American GI William there is no denying the attraction between them…And even though she knows her family would not approve of her relationship with a black soldier, they can’t help but fall in love.
However Rose has a secret of her own and when war separates the sweethearts before she can confide in William, it is Rose who will have to deal with the consequences…
Dreams can come true. You know, like a REAL British summer identical to the one we now have. As well as that THING you have always wanted to do. Whether it’s start a business, write a book or become a master baker! Dreams have a way of resurfacing again and again, no matter how much we (or others) try to dampen them down or push them into a place we can’t access. As for me, I can’t live without mine and one of them was to get a book published. So here I am enjoying my tenth year as a PUBLISHED author. Yes, I wrote that in caps because being published ten years ago, doesn’t mean it was only ten years ago that my journey as a writer began. I was striving long before that time; writing for free, filing those rejection letters (and then emails) praying, waiting, and believing that one day, my time would come.
And it did.
(and here’s a video of me watching my first book being printed – and screaming about it!)
And I will never forget the day I received the call from my agent that SOMEONE WANTED TO PUBLISH MY LITTLE BOOK! I thanked God and then proceeded to go into semi shock… and then I may have shed a tear.
The book I had written in my PJ’s whilst watching a very special and inspirational episode of the Oprah Winfrey show was going to be shared with the world.
I had never set out to write a tearjerker. Simply the story of a young girl (Lois) who loses her father and tries to connect with him through letters he has written to her. But it was a story I HAD to tell.
Ironically, it wasn’t Lois’s story that was itching to be told- it was her father, Kevin who begged me day and night to tell his story. This character I had never met, who didn’t actually exist, yet was to become a huge part of my life via my book; By The Time You Read this. Kevin was a young man, taken down before his time. A man with hopes and dreams – the biggest one being, to see his little girl grow up.
Although Kevin is a fictional character, I know there are many human beings around the world who have been in a similar position- gone before their time without having the chance to write to their love ones; to tell them they are loved; to teach them their version of the meaning of life and love.
I have met, loved and lost such beautiful people and you may have too.
So before, my tears wet this laptop, I’d like you to help me raise an invisible toast to Kevin and Lois- beloved characters of my first published novel By The Time You Read This published exactly ten years ago. And here’s MY letter to these amazing characters:
Dear Kevin & Lois; Thank you for sharing your story with me. So many have read your story and I even got an email TODAY from the Philippines where you were mentioned. Your story has also appeared in the German, Korean and Serbian languages and according to the wonderful Harper Collins US team, your American cover was inspired by Barack and Sasha Obama. Even ten years later, your story is still available in paperback and is currently 99p on Kindle! I will never forget you, Lois and Kevin for getting that publishing ball roiling.
Is it me or is the year just flying by? I’m not just using this as an excuse for not writing my blog posts on time (OK maybe a bit) it just feels like it was only yesterday we were celebrating Christmas.
It’s also six whole months since my fifth novel Orphan Sisters hit the shelves in paperback.And if you enjoyed reading Orphan Sisters as much as I loved writing it, please leave a review HEREReviews are mega helpful to authors and I also love hearing what readers think.
It is also TEN YEARS this year since my first novel By The Time You Read This was published. I can’t believe it’s been a whole decade since a book I wrote in my pyjamas was published and translated into several languages including German, Korean and Serbian. It’s still available in paperback and is currently 99p on Kindle! I still get tingles thinking about that book!
It’s been a while since my last post. Forgive me, I do have an excuse. I have been hard at work on my next novel which has the working title: Flower Girls and is due out this year. I’ve also been trying my hand at script writing and of course watching Netflix and catching up on my reading.At the moment I’m reading the wonderfully compelling The Brighton Mermaid by Dorothy Koomson which will be out in May.
So, all in all- an action packed start to the bright and springy month of May. But alas, like this week, my blog post is short.
So this is my first blog of 2018, and I’m about 2 weeks too late in writing this post. So, A belated Happy New Year and I hope you have all started off on your goals for the coming days, weeks and months.
As for me, it was a crazy 2017 which saw me get my first book published in 5 years, have major surgery, be diagnosed with a chronic illness, meet an amazing human being and have some of the best times of my life. My faith in God only got stronger and I learnt the art of facing my fears and coming out of it the other side! What a ride 2017!
So now we’re in the new year of 2018 and I’m pumped and ready to get on with my goals. First off, I have to finish editing my new book which has a working title of The flower Girls. For those of you who bought and read my current novel Orphan Sisters, thank you sooo much and I hope you enjoyed it. If you haven’t read it yet- what are you waiting for? Go and get yourself (and the dog) a copy!
This year marks the tenth anniversary of my first ever published book; By The Time You Read This. What an amazing adventure life as an author has been and it all started with that book – written in my PJ’s after watching an Oprah segment.
I’m also busy motivating and trying to inspire other would be writers as a motivational coach. If one of your resolutions has always been to write a book then get in touch. Together we can;
Help you set weekly or monthly writing goals
Help you structure and fine tune your writing.
Hold you accountable to your writing goals
Keep you focused and motivated
There is so much more to come in 2018 and I am ready to enjoy the ride. What are your goals for the coming weeks, months and year?
…in all formats: ebook, hardback AND paperback! If you’re in the UK you can buy a copy at Tesco and Asda as well as Amazon and anywhere books are sold!
Last night I had a wonderful book launch at West End Lane Books in Hampstead. A wonderful gathering of family, friends and colleagues! I can’t download any more pictures at the moment because of a technical hitch, so please be patient!
About Orphan Sisters
Their Nigerian parents have emigrated to England in search of a better life for their family. Nineteen Fifties London is a great adventure to the girls but not always welcoming. There are signs in windows of lodging houses warning: ‘no blacks, no dogs, no Irish’.
When tragedy strikes and the girls lose their father, their mother is unable to cope. When she fails to recover from the surprise birth of another child all three girls are sent to an orphanage. Lana is determined to keep her sisters together but when baby Tina gets adopted, she must admit their family is about to be torn apart – perhaps for ever…
What other writers are saying about Orphan Sisters…
“ORPHAN SISTERS by Lola Jaye The story of Lana, May and Tina, three sisters who find themselves alone in 1950s London after losing their parents is as remarkable as it is touching. Lola’s ability to evoke the era and create characters who you are rooting for from the word go, takes a real talent. Orphan Sisters is a brilliant saga novel in the mould of some of the classics” (DOROTHY KOOMSON)
“I highly recommend this moving, gripping story about a Nigerian family who start a new life in England, only to find themselves cruelly torn apart.” (KITTY NEALE)
“ORPHAN SISTERS is wonderful, affecting and refreshing, with characters and a story-line that weave together flawlessly. An important slice of social history that I recommend without hesitation.” (ALEXANDRA BROWN)