It was just a car. A small, white, hatchback car.
I’d been struggling for a few years, borrowing money left right and centre (but mainly from a very special French friend who believed in me even though she couldn’t read what I was writing).
I’d given up living in my own flat so that I could rent it, and moved full time to a mountain cabin (even though it was -15 in winter and I was regularly snowed in.) But I still couldn’t make ends meet, so I was seriously considering selling my flat. That, at least, would provide a few years breathing space so that I could carry on writing. But what then?
And my car, which was oh-so-essential up the Alps, was this awful, unreliable Renault 19 with brakes that failed more often than they worked and tyres that wore down on one-side-only in weeks rather than months. That Renault, how to fix it, how to come up with the money to get it towed, how to get to the food shop which was 30 miles away when it wouldn’t start… was a constant source of real anguish.
And then Amazon Kindle publishing happened, so I self-published The Case of The Missing Boyfriend and within 6 months, that one book had paid off most of my debts. I couldn’t believe it.
By the beginning of 2012 (pictured) I had enough money to go and buy a brand new car, my first ever, cash.
That enough of you out there liked my writing for me to buy something as vast, tangible, and previously unimaginable as a brand new car was a huge milestone for me, and I don’t mind owning up to the fact that I had to pull over and mop up a few tears once I’d driven it off the garage forecourt.
It was just a car, but it was also, somehow, physical proof that the bad years were over, and my new career (something a couple of my friends had been telling me to abandon) was really happening.
And it’s all thanks to you.