Sunday, 25 April 2010

You can't hide on the net

Sometimes I think I can get away with writing things on my Swedish blog that I don't necessarily want my English readers to know ... But I didn't take into account that there are some clever people out there, like James Burt, who use Google translate ...

Yesterday I wrote a very honest blog post (in Swedish) and today I got an encouraging text from James. First I thought how the hell did he know? Then he mentioned Google translate.

So now you all wonder what the f?!? I blogged about ... Well, you can go to my Swedish blog, copy it all and put it into Google translate, but I'll save you the trouble because I'm being kind.


She blogs less when she doesn't write. Because she blogs about writing there's no point in blogging when she doesn't write. She's twenty-eight years old and an award-winning novelist. In Sweden. In England she's nobody. Yet. She sent her manuscript REPLACING ANGEL to five agents. Five big agents. Everybody said no thanks to representing her. The agent she most of all wanted said no as late as Wednesday.

When the email with the agent's name popped up in her inbox she felt hot and cold at the same time and needed a poo. She was hoping for the agent to say that she wanted to see the full manuscript. (Usually you only send the first three chapters plus synopsis and cover letter and sometimes a CV). But the agent said:

"Thank you so much for sending me REPLACING ANGEL. I've taken a look and I'm afraid I don't think it is right for my list, but I wish you all the best in finding the right agent to represent you."

Which by and large was the same thing as the other agents said. But the positive thing was that this agent replied personally. The other agents replied through their assistants.

But Wednesday night there was no positivity in her life. She stuffed herself with a half big bar of chocolate and had thoughts about going to Beachy Head.

She didn't jump from the cliff. But she jumped to new hope by cleaning and sorting through all her cupboards and drawer and wardrobe. She took everything down from her walls. Instead of flyers postcards concert tickets and various other stuff she now stares at white surfaces.

Apart from clearing away her sorrow she has cut her hair for £9 and had another ear piercing done. Painted her nails she did too. To avoid thinking she concentrates on the physical. Her room. Her body.

Next week she's going to think again. Next week she'll get out the list with the five agents who will be next in line to receive her manuscript. She'll send it to five agents at the time until someone says yes. She'll never give up.

Thursday night she stayed up till one o'clock, answering emails/letters from the student at the school in Gothenburg she visited a month ago. Many asked how you go about finding yourself. Not by having more ear-piercings done that's for sure.

The most important thing is to find out what and whom you like and what and whom you DON'T like and ask yourself why. You find yourself by listening to your gut-feeling. And your heart. You find yourself by creating dreams and following those dreams.

To find yourself is harder than to NOT find yourself because it requires that you work on yourself. That you have to go down a few winding roads. Short cuts are just "long cuts" in the end.

And even if you've found yourself (as Louise thinks she's done) it happens that you lose yourself from time to time. Then you have to ask on. To find yourself is also to be aware of what you do and why you do it.

She's aware that she cleans every nook of her room and experiments with her appearance because she needs to focus on something physical before it's time to use her brain again.

And she's aware that her brother and her aunt will think that it's annoying to read about her in third person. But that's just another way of getting to know yourself. To look at yourself from the outside, to gain distance.


  1. In retrospect, it was probably a little rude of me to read an entry written in Swedish, when you normally provide an English translation: so, apologies for that. Hope you didn't think I was being nosy.


  2. polly ballantine26 April 2010 at 08:51

    Thanks for sharing! You are a sucessful, published, award winning writer and yet this happens to you, so the rest of us who are as yet unsucessful may still have a chance.
    See you for your radio interview this afternoon.

  3. Hello!

    I don't know if my comment saved last night. I just wanted to say that, on reflection, it was probably a little rude of me to translate your post when you'd not made an English translation available. I hope you didn't mind.

    Have a good week,