A debut novel from 61-year-old Julie Owen-Moylan

Mark A. Carlson


Creator Julie Owen-Moylan has just published her to start with guide, That Eco-friendly-Eyed Lady, at 61. She’s been crafting all her life but only in her 50s did she contemplate it could possibly develop into a career last but not least securing a guide offer with Penguin Michael Joseph in 2020. ‘Most of it happened all through lockdown. I didn’t meet the publishing crew until eventually recently,’ she tells me more than the telephone, ‘It hasn’t pretty sunk in still, but I’m officially an author!’ When we converse, Julie is travelling again to her residence in Cardiff just after the London reserve start, previous week, ‘We had a fantastic get together with charming visitors and type terms. I cried at the speeches  – and beloved each and every moment.’

On leaving faculty, Julie worked in a chip shop and then skilled as a hairdresser, ‘ I went to a terrible faculty and it was the closest I was heading to get to a profession in the artistic arts!’ she jokes. ‘Coming from a operating course background you know your position, you acquire a concept about what you should be doing as a younger woman. “This is not for the likes of you. Perform is to be endured, funds is really hard won.”

Beating ingrained attitudes is not effortless. And this is one thing I can thoroughly empathise with, having had a similar training and upbringing. But, perseverance, expertise and resilience do pay back off. Various decades down the line, just after travelling overseas and taking on quite a few bar jobs, Julie went to higher education and then onto college. ‘ I usually loved guides and could compose – I experienced potential but there was no way of articulating or knowing it. There is a paucity of ambition. Strengthened by the messages. It is been a extended outdated journey – but I acquired there in the end.’


Immediately after doing work in more education (lecturing in enterprise management) and operating her personal schooling organization, on her 50th birthday, Julie gave herself the reward of a section time Master’s Diploma in Resourceful Producing. ‘When my tutor marked my dissertation, he declared the area of a novel I’d submitted as publishable good quality and I was ecstatic believing it was just a issue of time just before the literary entire world fell at my ft. Then I failed…again…and yet again.’

Possessing her manuscript turned down by 70 publishers, Julie began to question herself, ‘ I’d carried all over a committee of persons in my head telling me “this isn’t for the likes of you”. They popped up once more. I was too previous, not superior enough… But then I realised that the only thing keeping me back again was me. It took me a while to switch the committee with a far better message. There is no reason why age or background really should get in the way.’

To boost her probabilities of being released, meet up with other authors and literary brokers, she signed up for an on line system at the Faber Academy. Then finally, following finishing the course, Julie Owen-Moylan’s e-book deal came about. That Eco-friendly-Eyed Girl is historical fiction. The tale spans the 1950s to 1970s, and characteristics two instructors, a lesbian pair living alongside one another in New York, ‘ At a time when it was unlawful, they could’ve been locked up, supplied electric powered shock treatment method,’ carries on Julie, ‘I like to glow a highlight on these things, to generate from a feminist angle. To get folks to feel “what would I do?”‘

With her next novel in the editing stages, Julie is at present studying guide selection 3. ‘I like creating tales, generating characters, intricate women of all ages. I like to issue out all the limitations females faced – points have transformed so substantially in my life time: it was illegal to go into a bar on my individual until finally I was 22, you could not get contraception or a credit card, it was authorized to get raped in just your relationship. When I search again, I imagine “Fucking hell, how preposterous.” I like demonstrating folks what it was like – it took a long time to adjust these attitudes, there is a lot we consider for granted now.’

Achievements could not have appear straightforward but now Julie Owen-Moylan has been recognised and printed, this is the begin of a confident new chapter. She’s about to embark on a short book tour and various publicity gatherings, such as Hay Pageant. ‘This is the starting of my profession as an author. I want to be as superior as I can be, to generate a body of work I’m very pleased of. And I know there is heading to be a good comply with-up for the reason that I have published it.’



Skilled tips to prospective authors from Julie Owen-Moylan:


If you really want to do it, create something for you. One thing that will make you content. Anything you want to read through.

Make your own style, really don’t test to observe traits. Make your possess route.

Never submit way too early. Adhere it in a drawer for a thirty day period and arrive back to it. Increase your get the job done alternatively than sending in an early draft.

You will most likely get rejected. I did. But when you get knocked again, select on your own up all over again and preserve going. The moment you begin, you have to keep likely – specifically if you did not get a deal until you had been 60!


Julie Owen-Moylan will be signing books in Cambridge and Swansea, as nicely as showing up at the Hay Festival and other gatherings. More details Below.



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