Overcoming Relentless Setbacks to Achieve my Dream Book Deal

EP012 with Alison O'Leary & Claire Frances

Be brave, keeping pushing forwards

Do you have a dream, passion project or heartfelt goal that’s in your blood, but complications, disappointments or knock backs have got you questioning whether you can do it, and feeling like you should just give up?

If you’re in this place, come and listen to Claire’s story as she shares her pretty incredible journey to getting her first novel published. 

Despite her experience as a journalist and freelance feature writer for publications like BBC Countryfile Magazine and Devon Life, and as a host blogger for The Huffington Post, Claire’s road to securing a publishing deal has been anything but easy.

She has faced monumental hurdles and setbacks, but she shares how she found the tenacity to continue working at it, and what helped her trust her instincts to make massive decisions that others would have considered too risky.

In our conversation, we talk about Claire’s very relatable experience of trying to make this dream of hers work, and we unpick how and why she didn’t give up, and how she ultimately landed a two-book publishing deal with One More Chapter, an imprint at Harper Collins, who publish “unputdownable fiction” 😊

In this episode we discuss

  • Claire’s early start to writing (she was 5 years old!) and how it made her feel
  • How she navigated studying and trying to find her way to the kind of writing she wanted to do
  • Her arduous and painful journey with book agents and the multitude of book drafts, and what it was like for her trying to write a book and balance having small children
  • The priceless learnings that she gained about how the world of book publishing works
  • What can happen when you just believe and you don’t give up

If you’re working on something that feels deep rooted and intrinsic to who you are, but it hasn’t been an easy ride, I really hope Claire’s story inspires you to keep going. If it’s in your heart, don’t give up on it!!

Quick ref to resources or links we mention

Claire’s first book is due to be released in early 2025. You can read the full press release and I’ll update these show notes once there is a link to buy Someone Like Pearl.

A bit more about Claire

EP012 Guest Claire Frances

Claire Frances has worked as a journalist and freelance feature writer for BBC Countryfile Magazine and Devon Life and has been a host blogger for The Huffington Post.  

With a rich hands-on experience with professional writing, she also has a Masters in Professional Writing, specialising in fiction, a diploma in Print Journalism and Radio, and studied Creative Writing at university.

Claire’s first novel, Someone Like Pearl, is being published by One More Chapter, an imprint at Harper Collins.

She lives on Dartmoor with her family, and finds her ideas for books come most naturally when she’s out walking with her dogs.

If you would like to know more about Claire or would like to connect with her, please do follow her adventures in happiness on her X account, or join her on Instagram.

There is a community with this show

If you enjoy this podcast show, then you will definitely enjoy being part of the Dream Chasers Unite community.

Come and meet, learn from and be inspired by awesome, like-minded people who are on their own Dream Chaser journeys (at various stages).

Find out what’s possible, by seeing what other people are doing to determine and go after their ideal careers and lives.

Join the group here.

Questioning your options to change careers?

You may like to wander over and check out my Work Wonderland™ Course. You can use this as a temperature check to make sure that what you are thinking of, in terms of changing your work or job, makes sense.

The course and web application are a low investment to help you to confirm what you are thinking, or give you some routes that you hadn’t considered possible. Read all about it here.

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