I've been taking a brief break from writing and after being inspired by a friend's book trailer I've created two of my own. The first is a general one about my books and the second about my school visits going virtual. I've put them onto my YouTube channel, onto the relevant pages on my website, but you can watch them by clicking below too. I'm no film maker (as you can tell) but it was a fun distraction from the grim world we're living in at the moment. Escape in a book everyone and I'll see you on the other side.
We're all online at the moment, myself included.
If you want to catch me, I'm next at The Golden Egg Academy Honkference. This is a FREE online weekend of events for anyone interested in children's publishing.
I'm featured alongside the amazing Maz Evans on a panel all about being self-published which runs on Sunday 31 January 11.15-12.15.
To take part go to this link: GEA Honkference and sign up. You will be sent an email with a link to join in over the weekend. The timetable of all the events is listed on the home page.
Catch you there!
As we gear up for the weirdest Christmas ever, I thought I'd let you all know what was happening in the writing world of Camilla Chester.
The best thing, for me, to come out of this terrible pandemic has been The Hairy Godmothers. Renamed from The Zooming Aunties by a predictor text error within our WA group, THG have been my saviours. We are a group of SCBWI writers who, after the cancelled Writing Retreat in March, have been meeting daily via Zoom to support one another. THG is an additional bonus, different to my original SCBWI critique group, and consists of (please make a note of the names as you'll want to check out their existing or forthcoming books) Mandy Rabin, Susan Bain, Sarah Broadley, Kathryn (Kitty) Kettle, Charlotte Teeple Salas, Linda Nelson and Suzie Wilde. It has been wonderful reading their work, having their fantastic critique support, and being involved with their lives. I feel very privileged to be part of such an empowering group. They are all names to watch. (e.g. Mandy was shortlisted in the Chicken House Competition this year, Kitty's debut The Boy I Am is released in March 2021, Suzie's third novel in her trilogy is currently being crowdfunded through Unbound) and I'll keep you posted to what happens with us all.
THG have been helping me to continue to shape For The Love of Lambs. I'm doing the final stage of editing before the teen love story goes off to my agent, Laura West at DHA, for her thoughts. Having been quite happy with it, I've now progressed into thinking the entire book is total rubbish and needs to be stashed away in a darkened cupboard. This self-doubt is quite normal and part of the process, so it won't stop me sending it to Laura (and then convincing myself she hates it).
As for, Call Me Lion (about the boy with Selective Mutism) - this book is still on its journey. I'm confident it will find the right home and will be a story that you'll hear a lot more about, but everything takes time and I'm learning to be patient.
I've completed my online Picture Book course with City Lit and have some ideas outside of the dogs that I'd like to work on when I have time.
For my next major project I've put in a Grant Application to the Arts Council to see if I can be paid to research and write a MG novel about a young carer. It's potentially really exciting, but no school visits means I'm looking for other ways to fund my writing. I'll know by mid January if I've been successful or not.
That's my writing news!
Oh and if you're buying books as presents this year, please use the online Bookshop rather than Amazon as it offers authors and bookshops a much fairer deal. Thanks and have a good one!
The daily readings of Thirteenth Wish are nearly all deleted from my YouTube channel now. You've only got two days to watch what remains.
Log onto my channel to watch: Camilla's YouTube Channel.
I had a lovely message from a mum to say she thought it was a privilege to be able to watch the videos and read along in their signed copy and that it marked a very distinct time in our local history. I loved reading that and has prompted me to say please do get in touch if you need the videos for a school resource or project.
Thanks for watching and I hope you've enjoyed them!
IMHO it is impossible to be a writer if you aren't a reader. Reading is probably the most important part of the process.
I'm taking a couple of weeks break from writing my teenage love story, For The Love of Lambs, as it's being read and commented on by some of my fabulous SCBWI writing friends. This space gives me the chance to read, as I find it impossible to read whilst I'm editing.
As you know, I don't review books on my website (you can follow me on Goodreads where I do review the books I've enjoyed), but I often get asked for book recommendations.
The best website is: My Book Corner They give completely honest and unbiased reviews, only featuring the books they love. It has everything from babies to young adult books and is really easy to use.
If you're looking to buy books for yourself or others, I strongly advise that this is the place you start (not Amazon!)
It's libraries week - yay!
I've made a video especially which will be played today at Baldock Library in Hertfordshire. If you're local pop in and take a look, or you can go to their Facebook Page and take a look (scroll down on the right and you should see all the Libraries Week videos - mine goes up today):
Baldock Library on Facebook
Felt very strange deleting my recording of chapter one of my third novel, Thirteenth Wish from my YouTube channel. It has gone for good - please hurry if you want to watch any of the other chapters. One a day will be deleted until they're all gone.
I've been laid up with this awful virus.
Just beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel, but oh my word it has hit me hard. I've been so very ill.
Please #MaskUp everyone - you seriously don't want this thing, it's vile.
Welcome to my blog, a place where you can keep up to date with what I am up to.