My eldest is an anxious boy. He gets nervous about the smallest of things. On Monday night we were lucky enough to see Adele open her word tour in Belfast. It was an amazing night and she spoke – in her own unedited style – about her nerves before the show. (Let’s say we all had intimate knowledge of her bowel movements that day!) I try to teach him that nervousness and feeling fear is normal. They mean you care. They mean you’re doing something that matters, because a life without risk, is not a life worth living. Fear can be your friend, albeit a rowdy one that needs kept in check, it can make you grow beyond what you thought was ever possible. Show me a person who has never felt fear, and I will show you someone that has never lived. On Monday night Adele inadvertently taught him that it’s ok to feel nervous, that it’s ok to feel fear.
After spending every spare hour for eight years writing two books consecutively, and a career break of almost three, I wonder if I’ll ever be able to tell him how scared I feel, right now. Because being finished is just the start. It’s time to send my manuscript to my readers and my agent. And for me, it really matters how this ends.