Being Published for the First Time With David Owen

Today I am here with a post for the UKYA Extravaganza Blog Tour. If you’ve been following my blog tour for a while then you would know that back in February, I was part of the first UKYA Extravaganza blog tour and I actually attended the extravaganza. They are putting on another one on the 10th October in Nottingham and even though I am unable to attend, they still asked if I would like to be a part of the blog tour.

UKYAX October Blog Tour Banner FINAL


The author I am going to be hosting on my blog today is David Owen, author of the book Panther:

Life isn’t going terribly well for Derrick; he’s become severely overweight, his only friend has turned on him, he’s hopelessly in love with a girl way out of his league, and it’s all because of his sister. Her depression, and its grip on his family, is tearing his life apart. When rumours start to circulate that a panther is roaming wild in his south London suburb, Derrick resolves to try and capture it. Surely if he can find a way to tame this beast, he’ll be able to stop everything at home from spiraling towards disaster?

Panther is a bold and emotionally powerful novel that deals candidly with the effects of depression on those who suffer from it, and those who suffer alongside them.

He is here today to ramble on about what it is like to be published for the first time so read on to find out about his experience!

It’s hardly unusual for an author to say that their dream since childhood was to see one of their stories published. As recently as a few years ago I was convinced that simply seeing my book on the shelf in Waterstones would be enough to satisfy me for life. Even if it was a spectacular flop and I was never published again, that book’s existence would sustain me for the rest of my days.

It’s fair to say that, since that dream became a reality, my view on the matter has changed.

I should stress that holding a finished copy of Panther, my debut YA novel, for the first time was an incredible moment, as was the first time I saw it in a bookshop. And I’d probably get in trouble if I didn’t make it clear that its sales are more than respectable for a debut author. But I haven’t been able to stop myself from wanting more.

In the months since Panther’s May release I’ve found myself checking almost daily its Amazon sales rank, despairing as it slips down the charts and rejoicing at any small bump.

I haven’t been able to resist going into every bookshop I pass to see if it’s in stock, my mood darkening when I find it shelved in the wrong place, or not shelved at all.

Bookish Twitter is a wonderful community, populated by amazing authors and passionate bloggers and devoted readers, but I can’t help but envy the success of other writers there, even though they invariably deserve it, and I can’t resist grumbling to myself when another YA discussion passes by without Panther being name-checked.

I used to feel that simply getting published was enough. Now I find myself wanting so much more, and it makes me a little miserable.

This won’t be a popular opinion. It’s a sentiment that will rightfully annoy many who’ll say I should be happy with what I’ve achieved so far. And I am! Reviews have been incredibly positive, I’ve met so many great people, and I get to talk at an amazing event like YA Shot and UKYA Extravaganza. It just seems to be an ingrained personality flaw that I can’t be satisfied with my lot.

I don’t know if other nascent authors feel this way, or whether I am singularly narcissistic. The purpose of this post is partly to moan into blank space (a resounding success on this point, I feel) and partly to offer a different perspective on being published than you usually read.

Really the only remedy to this is to keep going, and to write the best bloody books that I can, and hope that one of them is good enough to earn the success I so crave.

In the meantime, um… buy my stupid book?

This is such a fresh post that talks about something that I’m sure goes through a lot of authors minds. I, for one, will definitely be buying his book as soon as possible. Will you? Are any of you attending UKYA Extravaganza? Let me know down below.

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