And so begins a quiet period…

Hello everyone,

First of all, I hope that we will be able to give you news on placement for my new novel The Zebra and Lord Jones at the end of this month and hopefully there will be some lovely press announcements about that. This is a book I have done with my literary agency, Wolf Literary in NYC. Then, I am about to get my edits on Ravished, which is my new collection of short fiction – if you like, you can pre-order now: https://www.foyles.co.uk/witem/fiction-poetry/ravished-a-series-of-reflections-on-age,anna-vaught-9781914114106?term=ravished+anna Here she is below – and here is a little more detail in this link: https://www.reflex.press/ravished-by-anna-vaught/ Ravished is a book on which I am working independently with this wonderful small publisher.

Then, I have finished my memoir, These Envoys of Beauty, also to be published with Reflex – this will be out next spring. More detail nearer the time. Beyond this, a novella, Her Winter Song is also out on independent submission and we will see, and, of course, I am still hoping to fully crowdfund for my first book about writing, The Alchemy. If you like, you could pledge here. https://unbound.com/books/the-alchemy/?utm_campaign=the-alchemy&utm_medium=AuthorSocial&utm_source=AuthorActiv

Beyond this, Italian rights have recently sold on my 2020 novel, Saving Lucia – so more news on that when I have it.

At the end of the month I start a year’s teaching with Jericho Writers on their novel in a year course. I hope I will be able to bring interest to what they offer; also to motivate, and provide a compassionate and safe-feeling environment for my mentees in which, frankly, to pursue their dreams. On top of this I will continue a small amount of secondary level teaching and one volunteer component which is for exam year Ukrainian students in our area.

The stuff about dreams, though: I realise – and it took me some time to realise it because I held stubbornly to certain beliefs – that, because of the demands on me at home and in particular because one of my sons has additional needs that have not been met by professionals over a long period, I have to retreat somewhat. I cannot keep being out there plugging myself on social media and, in addition, I think that I have worked so hard on writing that is close to no longer being a joy. I cannot let that happen. I am very, very tired and, even with an eventful life to date, nothing comes close in terms of awfulness to seeing my son suffer like this. So I am just going to be doing some gentle writing for pleasure for the time being, not submitting, no great plans – and I am going to have to rely on others to promote my work, share my work and help me break through more. If I don’t? Well, I have done my best in the circumstances – which include having some industry incidents which left me baffled and very unsure of myself – and I need to focus on healing and quiet times. I have done my best as a parent in truly challenging circumstances, trying to keep a family of five afloat without adequate professional input. Plus in six and a half years, I have placed 7 books with two more a going concern: it worries me I don’t feel proud of that. Now you see what I mean about healing; something has gone very wrong with my perception and I have very substantially moved the goalposts.
So here is to things getting better, helping others, fewer distractions, different hopes – at least for the time being – and getting back to more reading. Also, in building greater confidence in knowing that my own voice is good enough; interesting even: of value. That is what I would tell you. In this deep sadness, I am having trouble telling it to myself.

I will write soon my darlings.

Anna xxx

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