The date's been set. The story is ready to be told... Can you keep a secret?

There's a stranger in your home...

Welcome to my website.

My debut novel Cuckoo will be out on 29th November 2018.

But it's a secret... I can't tell you too much of what the story is about yet. I can't even show you a book cover.

I can tell you that it's a haunting and twisty story about the lies we tell those closest to us. And that it's the story of two little girls who did something bad...

I started writing Cuckoo almost two years ago in the early autumn. Back then I called it The Pear Drum - but what 's a pear drum, I hear you ask? That's why it's now called Cuckoo... But I love the new title - it works on so many fronts, but I can't tell you too much about that - aargh! Not yet.

We'd just moved house to a renovated farm up in the hills of Derbyshire and I woke one morning to mists rolling up against the windows and a pile of unopened packing cases. The place wasn't quite home, and with everyone either at school or work and no neighbours for at least two fields in all directions, I felt a bit lost and alone, and just a bit spooked out. So I dug out my computer, lit the stove and started to write a story.

It's such a daunting task writing a book. I don't think I quite realised what I'd taken on. Five months later I had a rough first draft. In a fit of optimism I submitted it for a competition for debut authors, the Bath Novel Award. Then to my amazement I won. By September 2017, I'd signed up with an agent and also won the York Festival of Writing Friday Night Live Award. It was a bit overwhelming. But that was only the beginning.

Now came the real work. Editing. I had edited before but there was lots more to do. Questions to be answered, back stories to be revealed, new scenes, deleted scenes, juggling to make it all work better and time to reflect and get closer to my characters. By spring this year I was on submission to publishers, chewing my nails, waiting. That's almost the worst part - waiting.

Avon liked the book, enough to offer me a deal. More editing followed (not too much thank goodness!), line edits, copy edits, proofs - and now we're almost there. I've seen the cover, and I can't wait to share it with you - and the story - but you will have to wait...  

All will be revealed on the night of Halloween, 31st October 2018.

Do follow me on Twitter - @sophiedraper9 or the hashtag #Cuckoo. 

The book goes on sale 29th November 2018.
You can pre-order it at Amazon or Waterstones
(and all other good bookshops). 

There's a stranger in your home...