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Author life: tax forms, signing and Book Two

Sarah Alexander



Facebook told me this morning that ‘140 people who like Sarah Alexander’ had not heard from me for 29 days. I am so, so sorry. I’m sure you’re wondering where the hell I’ve been. Or perhaps you haven’t – because 29 days isn’t really that long; to me it feels more like 29 minutes.

I’ve been having a mini break from social media because it gets a bit overwhelming sometimes and I needed to step away to recharge. But, I’m slowly making my way back and thought I’d start by letting you know what I’ve been up to since my debut novel was released into the wild. Warning: you’re about to get an insight into the more glamorous side of being an author.


Who knew there’d be so much? There are the fun bits, like reorganising my writing files, colour coding character notes and lining up my sharpies. And then there’s all this:

  1. Filling in tax forms (finding receipts from previous tax years, digging out bank statements from previous tax years, doing endless foreign currency calculations, scanning, signing, emailing, posting, etc.)
  2. Filling in other forms, e.g. registering my book for library lending
  3. Reading and signing contracts and remembering to post them
  4. Signing up for various author membership groups
  5. Setting up and maintaining my website
  6. Responding to emails from publishers, agents, bloggers and readers in a semi-timely manner
  7. Posting giveaways
  8. Buying stamps and remembering where I’ve put them


If you’ve been following me on Twitter, you will have seen a number of online interviews and blogs featuring me. With time and geography limitations, the best way for me to promote my book at the moment is online. I’ve been yabbering about my inspirations behind the book, plotting my ideal movie cast as well as talking about some of the more serious issues in the book. I’m not sure how many interviews and guest posts I’ve done but the spreadsheet I use to keep track of them all has several tabs and involves quite a bit of scrolling.

But promotion doesn’t only happen from behind the safety of my desk. I’ve been popping into book shops across the country and signing my books. It’s the stuff of dreams! In my dreams, though, I was never quite as awkward, or as shaky when holding the pen. Look out for exclusive signed copies of The Art of Not Breathing – you may even come across a bookmark or two. I also have some exciting in person events coming up later in the year. Watch this space for more info soon.

Book Two

Huzzah! Finally to the bit that makes all of the above worthwhile. I’m a writer and what I like best about this crazy new job is writing. Now things have calmed down a bit, I’m back to writing every day and Book Two is shaping up nicely.

PS It has a title now but it’s still a secret.

PPS I can’t wait to tell you more about it.


Having a full time job, promoting one book and writing another doesn’t leave much time for this thing called life. Fortunately, I have a husband through whom I can live vicariously. I send him to the shops for emergency supplies of tea and biscuits, and then ask him what it was like out there. He usually tells me I’m not missing much. I send him to the family get-togethers that I can’t make and after those he tells me I am missing out. So, this month, with social media and Book One promotion taking a backseat, I’ve been out and about, and it’s glorious!

I’ve visited friends and family, spent time in coffee shops having bookish chats with writer folks, signed up for a 10K race with work folks, binge-watched two seasons of Orphan Black (why did I wait so long to watch this?), and I’ve booked a holiday. The next challenge will be whether I can get through my holiday without writing or logging onto social media. Probably not. Because this IS my life now.

Last Word

If you’re not one of the 140 people who likes Sarah Alexander on Facebook, what are you waiting for? I promise to post more frequently than every 29 days from now on.