Today on the blog I am proud to welcome Caz Frear. Who is Caz Frear, you say?
In March 2016, the couple behind Britain’s biggest Book Club, Richard and Judy, launched the Search for a Bestseller competition, offering a two-book world rights publishing contract with Bonnier Zaffre, worth £50,000, representation from literary agency Furniss Lawton, and the book will be stocked in WH Smith stores across the country.
Bonnier Zaffre is delighted to announce the winner of the competition is Caz Frear, whose debut novel Sweet Little Lies will be published on the 29th June 2017.
By Caz Frear
Until January this year, I wouldn’t have classed myself as one of life’s winners. I don’t mean this in a self-deprecating way – I have a lovely blessed life – what I mean is, until January this year, I’d never actually won anything tangible. Complete zilch. Not even a sports race at school or a pub quiz victory to crow over. I came second in a ‘guess the number of jelly-beans in the jar’ competition once, and I’ve had a few near-misses at the gee-gees, but all in all, as the popular saying goes, I couldn’t win an argument in an empty room.
Until that all changed in January. Big style.
Since winning the Richard & Judy Search for a Bestseller competition, the one question I’ve been asked the most is, “So how does it feel?” I don’t mind admitting that I often feel at a loss how to answer this. I mean, how does it feel? ‘Fantastic’ doesn’t quite cover it. ‘Amazing’ is how I describe cocktails and dresses and macaroni cheese. How exactly do you sum up the feeling of getting everything you ever wanted, meeting the most wonderful people who are SO dedicated to making you a success, holding your book in your hands for the first time, reading glowing reviews, getting the thumbs up from Lynda La Plante, meeting Richard & Judy and…. and…….and
Overwhelming, that’s how it feels. In the happiest, most brimming-with-sunbeams-and-rainbows sense of the word, I feel utterly overwhelmed by it all. Ambushed by amazingness. Every day seems to bring with it a new piece of good news, whether that’s another supermarket picking up my book, a lovely review, a request for an interview, a quote from a fantastic author. It’s all just too wonderful. A conveyor-belt of
But there is another side. It’s not in any way negative (seriously, I can’t remember the last time I had a negative thought!) but there’s always a bitter-sweet moment when you achieve a major goal. A moment of teary-eyed reflection that hits you when the champagne’s all been drunk and the last people have left the party. It reminds me of the episode of Only Fools & Horses where Del has finally become a millionaire and he’s living the high-life and buying up the whole of Peckham, however, in a beautifully touching scene, he returns to Nelson Mandela House one last time to think about the past and he ends up admitting to Rodney that he misses all the wheeler-dealing, the highs, the lows, the dreams, the let-downs of his former life.
Essentially he admits that chasing the money was far more fun than actually getting the money.
Now, let me be clear. NOTHING will ever be as much fun as finding out I’m going to be a published author and I have absolutely no desire to turn the clock back WHATSOEVER. But…..what I now realise is that there’s real beauty in striving for something. In dreaming
about what what could happen. I’ve waited my whole life to see my book in a bookshop and it’s nothing like I dreamed it would be – it’s ten times better – but dare I admit that there’s just the tiniest, tiniest bitter-sweet feeling around the fact that for me, the chase – or at least the initial chase – is over.
Because I only went and bloody did it!
Of course, the trick is to keep setting yourself new targets. To keep scaring the bejesus out of yourself with laughably ambitious goals. But then if I’ve learned anything over the past year, it’s that nothing is ever laughably ambitious.
Dreams really do come true.
WHAT I THOUGHT I KNEW
In 1998, Maryanne Doyle disappeared and Dad knew something about it?
Maryanne Doyle was never seen again.
WHAT I ACTUALLY KNOW
In 1998, Dad lied about knowing Maryanne Doyle.
Alice Lapaine has been found strangled near Dad’s pub.
Dad was in the local area for both Maryanne Doyle’s disappearance and Alice Lapaine’s murder – FACT Connection?
Trust cuts both ways . . . what do you do when it’s gone?
Caz Frear is on Twitter https://twitter.com/CazziF
As well as your local WH Smiths, you can pick up your very own copy here