Thunderclap!

Hey guys,

Guys! I’m doing a “Thunderclap” campaign to get the word out about the release of my book ANIMAL… Pretty please can you sign up to take part? It only takes a few seconds to do! Click here: http://thndr.me/5IcY8z

Thank you, Gillian xxx

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Alana’s Mistake

Hi guys,

I just want to let you all know that I am writing a brand new story on Wattpad!

It is a thriller, no less, and a sexy one at that : ) If you liked Gone Girl or Fatal Attraction then you may well love this story.

Please read!

A young, happily married woman has a one-time affair with 
a man who refuses to allow it to end and becomes 
obsessed with her. 

Alana is 22 years old, but she got married at 
16 to her husband Noah, father of her sweet 
little girl Snow. Because they got married so 
young Alana sometimes wonders if she missed 
out on all the fun her friends seemed 
to be having. Noah is the only man she has ever 
really known, that is until she meets 
musician Elias Smith. 

Alana and Elias end up spending a reckless, 
wild weekend together. When it is over Alana 
wants to forget the whole thing and 
return to life with her family. 

But Elias has other ideas. 
He doesn't want it to end. Not when Alana is 
the one woman who has ever made him feel 
something. Elias wants Alana for his own, 
and he will stop at nothing to get her.

Top Ten Tips to Starting Out on Wattpad

Wattpad is a writer/reader platform, like a YouTube for stories. There are around 45 million users, so if you are a writer, looking for a home for your work – it could be right up your street.

I joined Wattpad in 2011 and since then I’ve posted 3 short stories, 2 novels and a collection of essays, and had over 2.4 million reads of my work. These are my top ten tips to starting out.

  1. Have a read

The first thing I would recommend is something all writers are good at – grab a cuppa, put your feet up and enjoy a good read. There’s all sorts of stuff on there. The majority of the users are female teens, so there’s plenty YA. The Romance and Fantasy genres are strong but there’s also loads of other stuff such as Sci-Fi, Historical and Poetry. Hopefully there’ll be something that will float your boat. There’s an app if you like reading on your phone.

  1. Have a wee think about it

I would definitely recommend, once you’ve had a look, having a wee think about whether this is the right move for you, for this stage in your career. Remember, you aren’t getting paid for the work you post so if you feel you are at a stage where your work ought to be selling, another route may be preferable such as self-publishing on Amazon or any of the other self-publishing platforms there are out there. However, if you are starting out, and you want to practice writing, and put a bit of pressure on yourself by knowing your work will be out there and being read, then Wattpad is a good option.

  1. Post your work – eek

This bit can be scary. You’re putting your heart on the line, you’re revealing your work to the world. To do this, mechanically speaking it is easy enough – you sign up for the website then go to where it says ‘Works’ then ‘New Story’ and away you go. However it may not be so easy on an emotional level. I know, I’ve been there. I remember the battle that raged in my mind between ‘do it!’ and ‘don’t do it!’ If ‘do it!’ wins, and you go ahead and post, you will officially be out there and your work will be available for the entire planet to read.

  1. Persist

One thing I will say is this. Thousands of hits on your story will probably not flood in from the first moment you post. No one may read it, apart from yourself and your boyfriend. Your boyfriend may not even read it. I was able to count the number of followers I had on one hand for the entire first year I was on Wattpad, and that included my own mother and my auntie. That state of affairs continued for what seemed like ages, where my read numbers were very low and my followers close to zero. However, I did keep going and now there are thousands of followers, the reads of my work just keep going up and I barely have time to answer all the comments and messages I receive every day.

  1. Interact

It is a good idea to interact with the other people who are on Wattpad and not take a ‘too cool for school’ attitude. People are there for the community as well as the stories. So it helps if you reach out to others, read their work, genuinely comment and get involved. However, there’s no need to spend so much time doing this you don’t actually write anything.

  1. You could get Featured

At some point whilst I was posting my first novel, the Wattpad staff contacted me and asked me if it could become one of their Featured works. This was a great opportunity because it meant that once the book was finished it was entered onto a page which is home to some of the best works on the website. This gave a good boost to my exposure. I’d say the reason I got this is because I was writing the best work I could at that time and I was writing regularly.

  1. Craftwork

Writing is very much a craft and it takes hours and hours and hours (and hours!) to become a master of it. Wattpad is a good place to do this – it provides an interesting framework for you to work in whilst you dedicatedly hammer your craft. The more you write, the more you improve and if you publically announce you will be posting a chapter a week it keeps you accountable to an audience, no matter how small, and forces you to write, even on those days when hiding under a duvet is a much preferable option.

  1. Know you readers

Steven Spielberg says that in his early days as a director his audience were everything to him, and he constantly strove to know them and to thrill and excite them. Wattpad allows you to know what parts of your work are hitting home, what parts of your work are resonating with your audience. You can also learn to take criticism, and how to take praise too.

  1. Become a Star

Those writers who do gain a lot of traction may be invited to become ‘Wattpad Stars’. These guys are the ones with the most followers and reads, and they can be invited to take part in paid projects with major TV networks and film studios. I was commissioned to write a short story for USA Network to promote the launch of a new TV show. Things are constantly changing on Wattpad and there are new opportunities to be had. You may also receive a free t-shirt like I did. Who doesn’t like free t-shirts?

  1. Find your team

Most writers write alone. But they don’t reach success alone. They do that with help – whether that’s from friends, family, agents, publishers, whoever. There’s some kind of a team alongside every great writer, even if it’s just a long-suffering husband, wife or pet dog. Posting stories on Wattpad can be a great way of finding your gang. When you post, you can promote your work on your Facebook page, or your twitter or wherever. Certain people you already know will take an interest, they will read your work and they will support you. Not everyone. In fact people you thought would support you, may ignore your efforts entirely, but no matter, because the handful that rise up to support you – those are the gems, those are the people you can have with you, all the way to the top.

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Advice To New Mothers

Please note that this a tongue-in-cheek blog post written by a mother-of-one 18 month old. Do not take any of this seriously!

As soon as you find out you are pregnant you must relax, straight away because stress will harm both you and your baby, possibly forever so whatever you do girl, RELAX. You must not ever feel guilty about this but you should make sure you do it and rest a lot, plus do lots of exercise, such as lots of walking, swimming, aqua fit is perfect so definitely do that, four times a day preferably, lots of yoga and eat very well, but never worry about what you eat, you can’t be expected to do that.

Don’t change your life one bit, even if you want to vomit every second whilst at the same time, systematically change everything. You should walk every single day, without fail and take vitamin B6 which may or may not work for the nausea, eat bananas, baked beans and avocados every meal time, without fail. Make sure you remain relaxed. If you are not relaxed you have to take a bath but under no circumstances should you use water, soap or a towel.

When it comes to giving birth, a natural birth is the best way. Apart from the pain, for which you should use pain relief, lots of, as much as you want. You should avoid a c-section, also a vaginal birth. Definitely use a tens machine, essential oils, the water pool always works, except when it doesn’t and get your partner to massage you a lot, but don’t ever have your partner with you because you should use a doula, a midwife, a doctor, a consultant, an anaestheologist, but have nobody actually in the room whilst you are giving birth as you will not want this, or you might want all of them, plus your partner.

You are going to want to know about sleep in fact your whole life will become about sleep, your sleep, your babies sleep, and your neighbours sleep. You must put your baby to bed at 7pm not one minute later every single night. Apart from when you let your baby sleep whenever they want to sleep, which you should definitely do all the time.

You must sleep when your baby sleeps, except when you need a shower which should be at least once a day. You must brush your hair twice a day, every day. Do not attempt to brush your babies hair, there is not enough hair to be brushed so do not even try it ever. If you do brush your babies hair, use a tiny weeny brush, the one from mothercare that is white, as that is the only one in the entire world that will actually work.

On sleep, let your baby cry. But only for one minute. Any more will do severe damage to your baby’s brain, there are many studies done by many bona fide experts and also scientists on this. However, you must always let your baby cry as they will never learn to sleep on their own otherwise and that would be awful.

You must breastfeed, there is no other way. Apart from bottle-feeding, where you must, must, must use goats milk formula, the one that’s only available in Germany and costs £100, that’s the only one that works. You could bottle-feed and breastfeed but only three to twenty five times a day and you need to heat up the milk and then only do it at nighttime and if your baby ever poos change back to whatever you were doing before. Monitor the poos, every single one of them.

If your baby does not stop crying it could be one of sixteen thousand different things and you have to go through each thing and make sure it is not that. Go to baby and mum meetings, you must, even if it kills you to get there but of course never ever go if it kills you, that would be stupid.

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