What’s it like to be an author in lockdown?

Initially, I didn’t think it would be too bad. There wasn’t a huge difference between lockdown and my normal lifestyle – long hours in one room, poor nutrition, no social contact of any kind – I could do that.

However – there’s a lot of difference between staying in voluntarily and being told to stay in.  A month or so in and I was beginning to gnaw at my desk. And I’ve had my eyes tested already this year so I couldn’t even fall back on the ‘Well, I think there’s something wrong with my eyes so I’ll just go on a thirty-mile drive,’ excuse which seems to be so fashionable these days.

Anyway, I’ve beavered away for the last four months – mostly in an effort to save my sanity but I am slightly worried it’s had the opposite effect. I have just about finished Another Time Another Place. I’m on the finals stretch of Long Shadows (book three in the Elizabeth Cage series - due out October 2021). I’ve literally just finished the edits to Joy to the World. The Ordeal of the Haunted Room is edited and the edits for Hard Time turn up on the 6th July. I admit it’s been hard. Harder that I thought it would be. In fact, I had a complete meltdown a couple of weeks ago and had to be talked to quite sternly.

Then, of course, just as I’m wandering around the flat, enveloped in a miasma of Imposter Syndrome – and yes, that is a thing before anyone asks. It’s when you’re convinced you’re rubbish and it’s only a matter of time before the world finds out and you’re subjected to national and international humiliation and all your readers ask for their money back. Believe me, I can really do that one – especially at three o’clock in the morning – then I open my laptop to discover Another Time Another Place has whizzed straight to Number One in Time Travel on Amazon – thank you very much, everyone – and suddenly the world seems a much brighter place. And I can legitimately take the afternoon off. And I have a couple of good books to read. And most importantly, there’s a giant bar of Swiss chocolate hidden under the cushion just over there. I don’t even have to get up …

PS: you can also pre-order a signed copy of Another Time, Another place by clicking HERE.


  • Alex

    I totally understand about Imposter Syndrome, I am a Master’s student in Ancient History (I’m 45!) and loads of my amazing lecturers have it, it is really sad but it is a thing. I love your books, they make me laugh and cry and I can’t wait for the new ones in all the series. Take care!

  • MaeLou

    Thank you for making history interesting. I knew next to nothing about UK history and had no idea it can be a page-turner adventure! If only history teachers knew this secret.

  • Donna Lovett

    All the way across the pond and up the mountain to Denver Colorado you are appreciated. I am addicted to your characters so … have all the meltdowns you want … please just don’t ever stop writing. You are important to my mental health!

  • Marianne Hulland

    Imposter Syndrome isn’t just an author thing – I spent my entire career in communications waiting for someone to find me out. I’ve retired now, and I’m still waiting or someone to tell me I shouldn’t have my pension. By the way, I often re-read books but I don’t re-read books as often as yours . . . if you’re an imposter, you’re a very good one.

  • Mark McCormack

    Your work is awesome, thank you very much, I’ll make the cuppas if your sharing the choccy 😁

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.