Don’t give up – Sarah Flint

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By Sarah Flint

My oldest sister was my inspiration to pick up a keyboard and type. I hadn’t even known that it was her hobby, until, through the family grapevine I heard, not only that she’d written a novel, but also that it had been published! ♥

Imagine my delight and pride when I checked out the book shelves in Tesco and saw her novel for sale. I honestly wanted to hold it up and run around the store shouting to all the other shoppers that my sister had written this book.

Inspired, I went home and in three months I penned my first story. I wrote at all times of the day and night, in between looking after my family and working part-time. It was an absolute joy, although the subject matter was often dark and disturbing. I wrote from my imagination, based on characters and crimes I knew from my experience of working on the streets of South London.

I wrote badly. I hadn’t written a thing, apart from statements, since leaving school at eighteen with a rather dismal ‘D’ grade A-level in English and it showed.

Aria_Flint_MUMMY'S FAVOURITEBut I now had a passion – and I shared this passion with my sister. With her encouragement I sent my first effort to her agent, and to my great surprise she saw something in my writing and took me on.

I thought that was it. I had an agent. Little did I know then that it certainly wasn’t ‘it’.

I remember my agent telling me on our first meeting, that most authors didn’t find success for many years. She was exactly right.

I carried on writing, whilst editing, re-editing and re-re-editing my first novel. A second was completed but not well received. A third was written, then a fourth with marginal success, both being published in hardback and distributed in some libraries in England and America under a different name. My first and second books stayed hidden within my computer files, as has a fifth.

I guess the moral of my story is not to give up. If you have a passion, feed it. Sometimes the passion will wane and you won’t have time for it. Sometimes it will flourish and you won’t have enough hours in the day to harvest it.

If it takes twenty years, so be it. Whatever happens though, if writing is something you love, don’t give up. If ‘it’ happens you will be the happiest person on earth. If ‘it’ doesn’t, it will still be a great legacy, if only on your own bookshelf at home.

With a Metropolitan Police career spanning 35 years, Sarah Flint has spent her adulthood surrounded by victims, criminals and police officers. She continues to work and lives in London with her partner and has three older daughters.

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