New on Amazon
Radical life changes and too much champagne at high altitude can take a girl to the most interesting places. Anna’s journey is just getting started when she takes a chance on a new friendship of the handsome male variety and winds up in a tiny village in Crete. It turns out she’s not the only one who has that idea...
My name is Fia Essen and I’m an author… That sounds like a confession, doesn’t it? Some people know that they’re meant to be writers from an early age. I didn’t. When I was a little girl, I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up. My parents put me in ballet classes so I would say I wanted to be a ballerina. I knew my parents liked hearing that answer. But I also knew that I didn’t really want to be a ballerina.
I spent most of my twenties doing a little of this, a bit of that, and some of the other. None of it was useful. I drifted aimlessly through life, without a passion or a goal. I was lost. In 2009, at the age of twenty-six, I started writing. I had recently left the hustle and bustle of Singapore and relocated to a tiny village on a Greek island. Why? Well, it seemed like a good idea at the time. But it wasn’t. It didn’t suit me anyway.
This Greek village had a population of about 250 people. It had very little to offer in terms of entertainment. So I started writing because there literally wasn’t anything else to do, not because I had a particularly burning desire to become an author. I’d been a bookworm my entire life. Why not try to write a book?
I finished my first novel and sent it out to more than 100 literary agents. All of them rejected my manuscript. Eventually, a small ePublishing company offered me a three-year contract and published my book. All in all, only fifty copies of that book were sold over the three-year period. When the publishing contract ended, I was equal parts disappointed and relieved. Disappointed because my book hadn’t become a bestseller and relieved because, now that the book was off the market, I could bury the disappointment and move on.
I continued my aimless drifting for some time, growing increasingly dissatisfied with my life and disappointed in myself. I would see posts from people I used to know on social media, notifying their online friends about engagements, upcoming weddings, brilliant new jobs, and the arrival of their first child. Me? I was twenty-nine years old and I still didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up.
Then I turned thirty and something happened. I consciously acknowledged that I was stuck in a rut and that I was miserable. I hadn’t admitted it to myself before. Of course, part of me knew I was stuck and wasting my life. These thoughts would enter my head in the dead of night when there were no other distractions to focus on. But I hadn’t said “I’m stuck” out loud in broad daylight.
Once I made the confession and said the words out loud, things began to change. I began to change. I began to take charge of my own life.
Finally, I knew what I wanted to do. And what was that? I discovered that I did have a burning desire to be an author after all. It was quite the surprise.
Every writer has heard the phrase “write what you know” at some point. So that’s exactly what I did. I wrote what I knew. I knew what it was like to be stuck in a rut so I wrote a book about a woman who was stuck, lost, and wasting her life. That book is called Ariel and it was published on the 1st of April 2015.
My second novel, Anna, takes place on a Greek island. The story was originally a diary. Anna is a fictionalized account of a phase in my own life. Events beyond Anna’s control force her to take a good look at her life. She discovers there’s more to herself and those around her than she had ever imagined. And, of course, there’s romance in the story too.
These days I’m writing because I’m 100% sure that it’s what I want to do. It’s no longer a case of “Why not write a book?” because I don’t have anything else going on. “Why not” is never a good enough reason to do something.
I want to write. No one else pushed me into making the choice to write. I made the choice. I’m all grown up now and I’m an author.
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About the Author
Fia Essen has been an expat since childhood. She grew up in the stables of the Middle East and Southeast Asia, surrounded by horses, philandering polo players, and bored expat housewives. Currently, she lives in Athens, Greece with her Yorkshire Terrier. You can connect with her at http://www.fiaessen.com or follow her on Twitter @FiaEssen. And you can find Anna on Amazon in Kindle format and paperback: http://mybook.to/anna