This week psychological thriller author Vikki Patis, who is published by Bookouture, is sharing her writing journey with us. Welcome to the blog, Vikki. Can you tell us how you became a published author?
My path is littered with chance meetings and slightly strange but amazing opportunities. Like many writers, I have always wanted to write. As a child, I used to fill exercise books with stories, giving them to friends to read on the school bus. Reading was always my escape, and I spent hours with my head in a book. When I went to university, I was asked to join the university paper, writing about various topics, and I was invited along to a book launch for a local author. My editor asked me to interview him, and so the Ask the Author project began on my blog, The Bandwagon. I had the opportunity to interview a variety of authors, including the wonderful George RR Martin, author of A Song of Ice and Fire, the books behind Game of Thrones. George gets a special mention, not because he is so well-known, but because he gave me two pieces of advice that would change my life.
The first piece of advice was to ‘steel yourself for rejection’. Most writers go through long periods of rejection, he said, so ‘see at least if you can get some personalised rejection letters’. The second piece of advice was to write short stories. I’d complained that I couldn’t finish anything, that I have these amazing ideas (to me, anyway!), but I would lose focus 7000 words in and it would end up in the proverbial drawer. George told me to start small, to write short stories of varying lengths, in different genres, from different points of view. To really challenge myself. And so, a couple of years later, Weltanschauung was born. I self-published this collection of short stories in 2016, and while it hasn’t broken any records, it has received largely positive reviews, and it gave me the confidence to try writing a novel.
My debut, The Diary, was published by Bookouture in 2018, quickly followed by The Girl Across the Street earlier this year, which made it into the top 100 on Amazon. I’m now halfway through my third psychological thriller, and I can’t describe how incredible the process has been. I’ve learned so much, met some wonderful people, and have had the privilege of working with some fantastic people within the publishing industry. I still have to pinch myself when a Bookstagrammer posts a photo of my book, or I read a review that truly gets what I was trying to say through my novels. As an avid reader, I still can’t quite believe that I can call myself an author.
What a fabulous writing journey, Vikki, and such great advice. Thank you for sharing this with us.
Here are Vikki’s books
Vikki Patis is the bestselling author of psychological thrillers The Diary and The Girl Across the Street, published by Bookouture. When she isn’t writing or working as a Regulatory & Compliance Manager, she can usually be found drinking tea, baking cakes, or taking walks in the Hertfordshire countryside. She lives with her partner and two cats.
Check in next week to read another ‘path to publication’ journey.
And if you want to read about my writing journey, I’m talking about it over on Tom William’s blog here.