Writing a novel is hard work. All of these people deserve thanks and some of them are exceptional folk in their own right. They supported me on the way. You should know about them:
Celene Petrulak: Artist
Fabulous artist based in San Diego, USA – currently designing the cover of my novel Gunshot Glitter. Celene has cultivated her own unique, mesmerising style using a variety of mediums. A fan of alternative music and icons, her work is lavish, contemporary and richly coloured. Find out more about her here: http://www.celeneart.com/
Jill Blair: Proofreader
Professional Scottish proofreader and officially the first person to read the first ever, completed master draft of Gunshot Glitter. Confessed it made her cry twice! But in a good way. She loves reading and will always give you her honest opinion. Friendly and approachable, she can be contacted here:
Other great people you should know about who are masters of their trade and have also supported me while I’ve been writing Gunshot Glitter : )
* Ronke Adeyemi’s shiny new, rather fantastic website launched in 2011. The lady has a love of culture, fashion and the zeitgeist and it shows. We met at a Random House blogger event in 2010 for writer, Lisa Jewell and have kept in touch since then.
Ronke kindly featured me on her website discussing my writing aspirations and showcasing the chaos incarnate space that is my study in an interview. You can read it here
* Fancy being beasted? Need a Personal Trainer? Love Yoga? Pete Wright is your man! Wokingham-based, ultra-friendly and qualified up to the hilt. Visit: http://www.one-body.com/
* Need PR for your band? Contact Lydia Nicolaides at: http://www.onlineprpixies.com
* Chris Pink offered to read Gunshot Glitter in 2011 and provide me with feedback. In return I did the same for his novel and also promoted it for him.
It is so stupid and wrong to be writing about Jez in the past tense. He died at the age of 35 in his sleep of bronchial pneumonia in Stonegate. Jez was a writer and editor and the first professional to ever tell me I was talented. I wrote a short story called The Birthday Present back in 2004 which went on to become the opening chapter of GUNSHOT GLITTER. Having a professional enthuse about your work and tell you you can do it, during a time when you’re holding onto your sanity by the skin of your teeth, believe me, it changes EVERYTHING.
Jez changed my life. Nothing was ever the same again after I met him. We had ups and downs but we always found our way back to one another because there was a real love and empathy there. Jez was kind, cheeky, generous, sensitive, had great taste in music ( I have Ed Harcourt & Cat Power to thank him for), loved cats, nature, the Scottish Islands, Lindor chocolates and was way more talented then he ever let on. He joked about having a crush on Evan Dando from The Lemonheads and tracking him down to proposition him. He flirted with his metrosexual streak though in reality he was really very shy and absolutely abhored being photographed. I don’t have a single photo of me and Jez together : (
Jez was quirky. If you called him on his mobile and he was on a train it totally freaked him out. He was a funny boy but extremely, extremely bright. He got a First Class Honours degree at UCL. And he owned and edited this magazine: http://www.scottishislandsexplorer.com/
He lived in the countryside but we’d meet in London and dine out and then explore the nooks and crannies of the city together. I am sorry he is gone. I am also sorry that the beautiful boy was such a stubborn, exasperating ass who ultimately bit off more than he could chew. I put my neck out on the line as a friend for Jez a lot. You do that when you love someone even if they leave angry at you. It doesn’t matter. That is real love. Telling the truth and not saying I told you so when they finally see it for themselves.I know we are okay, but when I see him in heaven I will probably have to resist the desire to smack him around the back of the head for leaving this world so prematurely, I know he’ll be berating himself twice as hard as I ever could.
Losing Jez taught me that if you have pissed someone off, grow a pair and ‘fess up! Life is too, too short for pride to get in the way of humility. You could get knocked over by a bus tomorrow. Bloody talk people! Do you really want to meet your maker knowing you should have climbed off the fence and talked to that friend you stonewalled then ran away from, or that relation you hurt and took for granted? What happens to your soul when you can no longer take stuff back? Regrets suck.
I carry Jez in me and I know where ever he is – he’ll see that my début is partly dedicated to him, because if there hadn’t been a Jeremy Peter Smith there wouldn’t have been a Gunshot Glitter. It’s that simple. His ego would have loved that. He always wanted to be a part of the book.
Nature fascinated him. I own a copy of ‘Lily’s Garden of India’ and one day I will read this to my own bairns and he’ll be watching from somewhere, utterly stoked.
Bless you baby and rest in peace. x x x
How To Contact Me
If you ever wish to contact me you can at: Yasminselena@gmail.com or alternatively do leave me a comment. I moderate them all so I will definitely see it. I’m a Taurean. We’re control freaks!