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What It’s Like To Write A Book

Author: Charlotte O'Shea

I remember when James and I announced we were engaged, a friend of mine exclaimed “You will become Charlotte O’Shea! That sounds just like an author’s name!”

It does?!

Obviously I didn’t think I would ever write an actual book. And if I did the last possible topic I could imagine writing an entire book about was weddings – what with being England’s most last minute and often uninspired bride.

It was 2008 when I became engaged, there was no Pinterest and no Instagram. And unless you count those whose audience resided across the pond, no UK specific wedding blogs either.

But then Rock My Wedding happened. And an intelligent, creative, supportive and generous community was born.

Without Rock My Wedding there would certainly be no Rock My Style or Rock My Family, our foundations in the wedding industry has enabled Adam and I to grow and manage a successful business of amazingly strong and talented team members where no two days are ever the same.

From today you can officially pre-order my book “Your Day Your Way on Amazon. The release launch is the 9th February and we are as ever, eternally grateful for your contributions and support of the Rock My brand.

So what was it like writing my first book? Well, it was certainly an adventure. You know me, always trying to juggle fifty nine projects all in one go, moving house, running a business, being a Mum, agreeing to create a coffee table-worthy hard back for the world’s biggest publisher…I’m only happy when there is zero chance of being bored. I’ll be honest though, there were times when I thought I had bitten off significantly more than I could chew.

There were also times when I just needed to shut myself in a dark room with gin and a box of Milk Tray.

As well as the prose I also wanted the vast majority of associated imagery to be art directed by us, the book really needed to be representative of our aesthetic and ethos and Ebury were brilliant in understanding and respecting our wishes. And for the most part, letting us get on with it. We organised various photoshoots and studio sessions to produce unique content that we hope readers will find inspiring and useful – the book has as much planning advice and useful tips as it does ideas for decor and your bridal party fashion. The fancy and the fluff is fun, but it’s the practical facts that will hopefully, save you time and money – which will essentially enable you to really enjoy the former.

I always always work better under pressure. I wish this wasn’t the case but I’m resigned to the fact it most certainly is. It wasn’t until the deadlines drew nearer that I truly discovered my “voice” and the overall direction of the book. I wanted it to have a beginning, a middle and an end. I also wanted it to look pretty and be opened up at any chapter – to be dipped in and out of as required.

Creating a book such as ours is easier and more enjoyable if you are as organised as possible, that you feel you have full support from friends, family and of course your publisher. I wasn’t afraid to ask for help when I needed it, and I wasn’t afraid to say when I thought something didn’t quite work. There are of course certain processes that in hindsight I would endeavour to make more efficient but I wouldn’t change the end result.

I am extremely proud of what we’ve achieved, our publishers seem super happy with the end result and you can’t ask for more than that. Well, apart from the fact we hope folks actually want to buy it of course.

Ahem, did I mention you can now pre-order your very own copy on Amazon?

Do feel free to ask me any questions you want to about running a business, writing a book or just about your wedding in general – it’s lovely to be able to reminisce about such a memorable and special occasion.

My personal favourite part of the O’Shea Big Day? Practically all of our guests following us around the venue in the sunshine for our portrait shots. Hilarious, and so wonderful to have all of the people we loved the most in one place.

Big Love All x

P.S You can read Dedicating My Book To My Daughter over on Rock My Family.

Purveyor of short shorts. Make-up junkie. Hopes to grow old disgracefully.
Follow Charlotte on instagram @charlotte.oshea

24 thoughts on “What It’s Like To Write A Book

  1. You should be very proud of yourself lady. This is boss.

    With two of my girls planning weddings at the moment, you’ve at least made Christmas a little bit easier for me.

    I have every faith that it’ll be a huge hit. Good luck! xx

  2. This is just wow Charl! Huge congratulations.
    Think you should crack open a bottle of Bollinger and enjoy this moment x

  3. Congratulations! You have made a happily married woman consider buying a wedding planning book – that sure must count for something. Well done x

  4. Huge congratulations – what an achievement. I am definitely buying it despite already being married and will be a go-to gift for recently engaged friends! Hope you have a big celebration party planned!! x

    1. Bless you Milly, I hope your friends like it! I think I will try and do some kind of house-warming/book/Christmas bash…better get planning! x

  5. What a fabulous idea and an amazing gift to give to newly engaged couples! There is nothing out there quite like it! Well done xx

  6. Congratulations on the upcoming publication of your new book. Hope to see it in a bookshop on publication day. I much prefer the excitement of looking for a book than using Amazon (might be the ex-bookseller in me).

    1. Hi Lucy! Absolutely – we are hoping for it to be available in all of our favourite stores where you can purchase books. I am the same – especially when it’s a coffee table type publication x

  7. Charlotte Congratulations.
    I started reading Rock My Wedding in 2010, we got married in 2011 and to this day still read Rock My Wedding. You’ve given me wedding inspiration, then I started reading Rock My Style and I’ve spent way to much money on bags and clothes. Then the blog saw us through our first house buy, giving us inspiration with the home tours. So in the congratulations, I’d like to thank you for being my lunch break read and helping me through some important stages of my life! x

    1. You are more than welcome Kirsty, thanks for being such a loyal and long-term reader and for supporting the brand x

  8. Congratulations Charlotte, so pleased all the hard work and dedication has payed off. My friend introduced me to RMW in 2011 and I haven’t looked back!! I was over the moon when you featured our wedding in 2012, and was so thrilled when you began RMS as it meant I could continue to follow the chitter chatter and goings on of the Rock My gang! And now the family blog, well you just keep ticking all the boxes. I love all of the features and ideas and I always look foward to seeing new posts. I love how honest you all are and how you don’t paint a rose tinted picture of everything. I will stop here for fear of sounding like a nutty fan girl ? But just wanted to let you know you are a huge inspiration and you should be so bloody proud of what you have achieved x

    1. Oh Anna what a lovely comment! Thanks so much for joining us on this crazy ride, I hope we continue to create exactly what you want and need xx

  9. Ah I got a little goosebump from the ‘big love’ sign-off; it took me back to my wedding planning days in 2013 🙂 Huge congratulations on this lovely book, what an achievement. I’m an English Lit graduate so I am completely biased, but in a fleeting life in a world of ‘nows’, I just think there’s something so special about a lasting bookshelf book xx

    1. Siobhan I couldn’t agree more. My life/career is online but there’s nothing like a tangible beautifully printed hardback x

  10. Charlotte! Yay! So happy for you! I’ll never forget the day I discovered those blue polka dot pages in October 2009! I wasn’t engaged, but I had met the boy and I checked back every day until the end of my wedding planning journey in July 2013. I still check back even now! Thank you for always making me believe that I could throw out the things I hated and that it was our day, our way!

    Annéka xxx

    P.S Because of a conversation we had at the Birmingham Wedding Show many moons ago, I also *finally* started writing a blog in 2015! I think I owe you a tea and slice of cake! xxx

    1. Anneka *Hello*! I’m sure I remember you, so glad you decided to write a blog and an absolute pleasure on the wedding front, so happy you had a wonderful day xx

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