Finally! It's here...
I'm sorry I haven't been in touch for a long while but, as so many of you are yourselves experiencing difficulties with the current COVID situation, I am hoping you will be able to read this with understanding and, perhaps, a little forgiveness.
The good news is that the long-awaited fourth and penultimate book in The DOTTY Series is finally ready for release - yay!
As fans of DOTTY will know, this book has been a long time in the making – far longer than it should have been! The truth of the matter is that I did write the first draft ‘on time’, back in 2018, but I put the release of the book on hold. I had been approached by an agent who offered to take the series to publish for me, and it was felt that I should wait until a publisher was found before releasing any further series books.
Unfortunately, after two rounds of rejections the agent felt there was nothing more she could do for the series, and my dreams of seeing my children’s books in the window at Waterstones (other good bookstores are available) or on the Big Screen, came to a rather abrupt end.
I’ll be honest, it totally knocked my confidence. This was really sad for me, because I had a wonderful supporter base (you guys!) that I’d built up on my own prior to this, but I felt those fans had been left out in the cold for so long by that point that I just didn’t know how to go back to what I was doing before. I persuaded myself that my readers would no longer want me (and Dotty) anyway, and so I let the book stagnate.
Add to that the trials and tribulations that are a part of ordinary life: a house fire that devastated our home and left us living in temporary accommodation for six months, my husband leaving his job, and then of course the COVID crisis and trying to juggle things whilst remote schooling my four children, and it seemed that I would never get back to my writing again.
But there is always a light at the end of the tunnel: fast forward to the beginning of 2021, and I decided to join a writers’ group. It was initially just an excuse to carve out time for myself to begin writing again – just an hour a day – but that simple act of starting to write was enough to give me the confidence to push ahead and finish my manuscript, and to self-publish it – thank you Unchained Writers, I owe it to you!
The book has undergone a little bit of change – a few rewrites, but mostly the change is in the title. The original manuscript was called ‘DOTTY and the Mermaid’s Purse’. But when I got to the editing stage, I realised that, whilst the book does feature a mermaid’s purse (I’m not saying any more than that – you’ll have to read the book!), the focus of the story is really on another, far more grisly artefact of legend – a Hand of Glory. And so, I decided that a different title would be more apt, and the book became ‘DOTTY and the Withered Hand’. Now I’ve got used to the change, I have to say I prefer it :)
The book is available to pre-order on kindle right now (the link is HERE for those who want to order or read the blurb), and the official release date for both Kindle and paperback is Friday 5th March 2021. I simply can't wait!
I'm going to be sending out exclusive snippets and scenes to my mailing list in the coming weeks, and releasing a few bits and pieces on the facebook page (www.facebook.com/thedottyseries), so do look out for those.
In the meantime, I would like to offer my sincerest thanks to all my readers - I'm looking forward to reconnecting with many of you over the coming weeks and thank you so much for your support and patience :)
With all best wishes,