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Guest Blogs

A blog by Hazel Gaynor

Hazel Gaynor is the acclaimed New York Times, USA Today and internationally bestselling author of five novels. Her 2014 debut, THE GIRL WHO CAME HOME, won the 2015 RNA Historical Novel of the Year award and THE GIRL FROM THE SAVOY was shortlisted for the 2016 Irish Book Awards Popular Fiction Book of the Year. She was also selected as a WHSmith Fresh Talent title in 2015. In 2018, Hazel will release her sixth historical novel, THE LIGHTHOUSE KEEPER'S DAUGHTER, inspired by the true story of Victorian heroine, Grace Darling. Hazel's books have been translated into eight languages and are published in 15 countries to date. She lives in Ireland with her husband and two children and is represented by Michelle Brower of Aevitas Creative, New York. For more information, visit www.hazelgaynor.com

You can follow Hazel online, on Twitter and on Facebook.

Running to Write (aka How to banish Writer’s Arse)

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 4 January 2017.

I’m not sure who came up with the phrase (was it you Catherine Ryan Howard?) but whoever it was, ‘Writer’s Arse’ is definitely a thing, and possibly even more of a thing after the festive season. I, for one, sat down to eat stuff way too often. What you may be surprised to learn, however, is that Writer’s Arse isn’t just a physical thing. It is also a state of mind. The state of mind...

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Are You Sitting Down?

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 4 November 2016.

A couple of weeks ago my editor rang me from London. ‘Can you talk?’ she said. I’d just arrived at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Annaghmakerrig to work on edits of my fourth novel. It was my first time there and I was determined to work hard and make every minute count. I stepped outside where the phone reception was better. Then she asked that question: ‘Are you sitting down?’ I wasn’t, but I soon...

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On circles and corners …

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 15 September 2016.

Back in May 2011 I was a frustrated writer-in-waiting. At the time, I was still writing my blog – Hot Cross Mum – a novel form of which had been out on submission to publishers in 2010 and was very nearly picked up by Little Brown in the UK. Nearly, but not quite. I’d written one novel, and had just started writing another set around the Titanic. It was called The Girl Who Came Home. Back...

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What it takes to make a book

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 8 September 2016.

There is a myth, floating about somewhere out there, that books write themselves. I wince when I read comments about writers ‘churning’ out books. I reach for the gin (any excuse) when I hear writing being talked about as ‘not a proper job.’ Today is UK and Ireland paperback publication day for my third novel, The Girl From The Savoy, and I can absolutely confirm that books do not write themselves and that writing is...

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Write like an Olympian

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 12 August 2016.

I can’t stop watching the Olympics. Every day since it started, the TV has been on all day in my house as we channel hop to follow fascinating sports I’ve barely heard of and to admire athletes who blow my mind. The kids want to take up fencing and kayaking. I’ve fallen in love with rugby sevens. It is all so compelling. So inspiring. But what really gets me are those fabulous pre-event montages the...

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We need to talk about John Cleese

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 13 July 2016.

Since I started writing in 2009, I’ve read plenty of books on the subject: Writers & Artists Yearbooks, style guides, creative fiction guides, the rules of this that and the other, but nowhere have I seen a guide on how to respond to a tweet endorsing your book to five million followers. But that’s what happened last Saturday when John Cleese sent the tweet above. Naturally, I turned to family and friends to screech in excitement...

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A peek inside book launch week.

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 13 June 2016.

Well, THE GIRL FROM THE SAVOY is now well and truly launched following the official release last week in Ireland, the USA and Canada. But what really happens when a book goes on sale? Publication day last Tuesday was an exciting flurry of activity on social media, with early reviews going online and lots of lovely good wishes from readers and friends in the writing community on both sides of the Atlantic. It was a hectic day...

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Empty chairs: when nobody shows up to your event

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 1 June 2016.

Sometimes those many minutes (ahem, hours) we spend flicking idly through our Twitter feed, turn out to be oh so worthwhile as we stumble across something that could almost have been written for us. It is just the thing we need to see or read, at just the right time. Yesterday evening, I came across such a piece on LitHub. The title grabbed my attention: What to do when no one shows up to your reading....

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Wexford Literary Festival: 27-29 May

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 13 April 2016.

Festival season approaches and the third annual Wexford Literary Festival was launched in Enniscorthy last week by Sunday Independent Literary Editor, Madeleine Keane. The event, running from 27-29 May, features a fabulous line up of industry experts, bestselling and award-winning authors who will cover subjects as diverse as debut novels, crime fiction, young adult/children’s fiction, self publishing and the publishing industry. In such an historic year for Ireland, I’m especially thrilled to be speaking about the joys...

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RNA awards shortlist for Emma Hannigan

Posted by Hazel Gaynor on 20 February 2016.

Huge congratulations to Irish novelist Emma Hannigan from Bray, County Wicklow, who has been shortlisted for the 2016 RoNAs (Romantic Novel Awards) in the Epic Romantic Novel Award category for The Secrets We Share. If Emma wins her category, she will go forward to contest the overall, most prestigious, award – The Goldsboro Books’ Romantic Novel of the Year 2016, sponsored by independent specialist bookshop Goldsboro Books. Fern Britton, author and TV presenter, will announce the winners of the...

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