Hello again, Treasured Visitor!
So who is Kate Lowe and what is she about?
I completed my first novel at the age of 24. I didn’t set out to write it with any commercial success in mind, which is good because the bloody thing is awful. 160,000 words of awful. One day, when I’m feeling particularly masochistic, I may share an excerpt for you all to point and laugh at. When it was finished I got all excited, bought myself a copy of the Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook, and started submitting my novel to agents without a single clue what I was doing. I received two generic rejections, and a whole lot of nothing from everybody else. I hadn’t even formatted the manuscript correctly. My query letter said very little about the novel, but a lot about how much I believed in it.
At some point I came to my senses. Realised I knew squat about writing a novel, so sat down and wrote myself another one. That was also very bad, but not quite as bad as the previous attempt. That one came in at over 100,000 words. I rewrote it twice. Then I enrolled on a distance learning course with Writer’s News and began a new novel.
Meanwhile I devoured all the books on writing I could lay my sticky mitts on. Absorbed the advice in Writing Magazine and began to submit short stories. The first one I ever wrote, Lucinda, made the shortlist. I kept on writing novels, learning as I went. Rewrote, rehashed, discarded whole chapters.
I read somewhere once that a writer has to write for at least ten years, or above a million words, before they really know their craft. Well I’ve certainly smashed through the word count and I turned 34 back in April, so I qualify for both. Whether I became any good at what I do is up to you to decide.
I completed (what I call) my first novel in May. Technically it’s probably my eighth, or, if you consider that I used the same characters, the fifth rehashing of my second. (I also wrote another novel, apparently. I found it on a thumb drive a couple of months ago and don’t remember very much about it. It’s 80,000 words though, and with a little polishing I think it’s a keeper).
I’ve blocked out the next two weeks for solid editing, so maybe this year will be the year I get an agent and a deal. Or maybe it won’t be. Most likely it won’t be. I’m under no illusions about how tough this writing lark is to make it BIG. And if I can’t catch an agent’s eye then there’s always self-publishing. Either way, my novel will be out there eventually.
And then there’s Riley Pope, of course. Riley is the lead in an urban fantasy series I began a few years ago, but then put on hold so I could concentrate solely on my novel. Now that its finished I’ve had the time to revisit The Case of Walutahanga, complete it, and write the second story in the series, The Case of Ahuizotl. As soon as I finish the third I intend to self-publish all three, with the aim of completing a Riley Pope story every couple of months.
I’m probably biased, but I think you might like her.
So that’s a little bit about me. A couple of other things you might like to know: my favourite authors are Jim Butcher, Kelley Armstrong, Mike Carey and Stephen King. I’ve recently tried to broaden my genres and very much enjoy Gillian Flynn and Lee Child. Bill Bryson is another of my favourites. I like genre fiction, and humour. If a book can make me laugh out loud, great! We all need a lot more laughter in our lives. Dara O’Briain’s Tickling the English is highly recommended if laughter of the side-splitting, tears-rolling-down-your-face variety is sought.
So that’s a little bit about me. Thanks for reading, and I hope you come back soon, Treasured Visitor.