I am delighted to be joined by author Lee Cockburn today as part of the blog tour for her new novel, Porcelain and we are discussing how she faired on her Road to Publication.
Thank you so much for joining me today Lee, it’s great to have you here!
Your latest novel was released two days ago but I’d love to know all about how you decided to become an author . . . When did you first decide to put pen to paper?
I was on holiday and sunbathing, and I was reading a novel by a popular author, but unfortunately it wasn’t hitting the spot for me. I had read 200 pages and it just hadn’t got to the point and that is when I decided that I wanted to write a book the way I would like to read one. Gripping from the start and all the way to the end, without too much unnecessary over description, and avoid dull topics and try and keep the reader entertained.
How long did that first manuscript take to perfect?
I started writing the week before I fell pregnant in 2009, I wrote until I gave birth, and then couldn’t write for the next two years as we had two young babies to look after and the last thing I thought about was sex and violence. I started writing again and in total the book took around 2 years to write, but this was only in my spare time, never writing for more than two hours at a time, which is hard.
How did you get it in front of publishers?
I have self-published Devil’s Demise and I have an agent and tried to get published, but I think the brutality and the graphic scenes of a sexual nature may have prevented it being picked up, although the ex-editor of Harper Collins really enjoyed it. Due to this I have chosen to self-publish again with Clink street, who offer a good service and help get my books out there.
What was the first reaction of people?
The reaction of people was one of surprise when I said I was writing a book, as they did not think I would ever write one, and neither did I, but I really enjoy it, and it is complete escapism and I want others to enjoy what I write.
Did the publishers want to change a lot? All? Nothing?
My agent did change a few things, she just edited out what was unnecessary but left the plot as it was, with all the graphic scenes, as she thoroughly enjoyed it. This edited version is not out there for the public yet, and both Novels remain as written, unedited, just proof read, with the odd minor adjustment pointed out by my proof reader Lynn Duke the Strathearn Snapper, that I usually ended up agreeing with.
Did you agree? Or stick to your guns and find someone else?
I did agree with most of the changes made by the proof reader and my agent, although my novels are virtually as they were.
How long did it take from them to get it out to the public?
Once I decided to self-publish, it took about 5 months to get Devil’s Demise out there the first time and 4 months the second Novel Porcelain.
What input did you have on the cover? Font? Etc. …
I chose the design for the cover for Devil‘s Demise, I asked for evil eyes over the silhouette of Edinburgh castle and that is what I got, I even changed the perpetrator’s eye colour to that of those on the front cover, I love it, well done Clink Street. The cover of the second novel Porcelain – Flesh of innocents, I asked for something a little different, but they could not do this, but I think the two eyeless porcelain dolls are pretty good and work well with another silhouette of the Castle.
If you could do it all again, what would you change?
I am doing it all again, and will do it again next year with book three, I like the independence of self-publishing, and if it does take off, then the rights to the books are mine, and I like that, although if the right offer came in I would consider it.
Thanks so much for joining me today, it’s be great discovering about your publication journey.
And thank you to Rachel and the team at Authoright for asking me to take part in this tour.
Porcelain is out now and you can get your copy over at Amazon UK
Detective Sergeant Taylor Nicks is back and in charge of tracking down a sadistic vigilante, with a penchant for torturing paedophiles, in this unsettling crime thriller by a real-life police sergeant.
High-powered businessmen are turning up tortured around the city of Edinburgh with one specific thing in common — a sinister double life involving pedophilia. Leaving his ‘victims’ in a disturbing state, the individual responsible calls the police and lays bare the evidence of their targets’ twisted misdemeanours to discover, along with a special memento of their own troubled past — a chilling calling card. Once again heading the investigation team is Detective Sergeant Taylor Nicks, along with her partner Detective Constable Marcus Black, who are tasked not only with tracking the perpetrator down but also dealing with the unusual scenario of having to arrest the victims for their own barbarous crimes. But with the wounded piling up the predator’s thirst for revenge intensifies and soon Nicks discovers that she is no longer chasing down a sinister attacker but a deadly serial killer.
Vivid, dark and deeply unsettling Porcelain: Flesh of Innocents is the perfect next read for serious crime and police thriller fans.
About the author . . .
Lee Cockburn has worked for Police Scotland for sixteen years including as a police sergeant in Edinburgh for seven years and also as a public order officer. Before joining the force, she played for Scotland Women’s rugby team for fifteen years, earning over eighty caps for the Scottish ladies and British Lionesses teams. She also swam competitively for twelve years, successfully representing Edinburgh at the age of fifteen in the youth Olympics in Denmark in 1984. Lee lives in Edinburgh with her civil partner Emily and their two young sons Jamie and Harry. Her first book Devil’s Demise was published by Clink Street Publishing November 2014.
Follow Lee Cockburn on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lee_leecockburn