It was the kind of reception usually reserved for visiting celebrities. A line of people snaked outside the door of Books & Books, Friday, many of them clutching copies of the hard-back version of ‘The Confessions of Frannie Langton’ for the author to sign. Sara Collins, the former lawyer and chair of the human rights commission, returned home to a warm welcome from friends and fans for the local launch of her critically acclaimed novel.
The Camana Bay bookstore was filled to capacity to hear Collins, in conversation with Nasaria Suckoo-Chollette.
Collins took time to sign copies of the book and to answer questions from the audience, during the event.
Asked by an aspiring young Caymanian writer in the audience what it takes to write a novel, she said she had worked for 12 hours a day for two years to complete her acclaimed debut.
She said she was happy to see young Caymanians inspired to take creative writing seriously as a career ambition but she warned successful writers have to be lucky as well as talented and dedicated.
“Having a novel published at this level is a bit like winning the lottery. You could work very hard and never have it happen, [so] you have to have a fallback,” she counselled.
“But if you feel like you have the talent and the ambition and the discipline, do not let anyone or anything stop you.”
She said she had wanted to write a novel for as long as she could remember.
“The only thing that stood in my way before was perseverance, I would start things and I wouldn’t persevere,” she said. “I said I didn’t have time, I was busy with my kids, I had all kinds of excuses. The only thing I did differently with Frannie Langton was I finished the damn thing,”
“I made sure I stayed at it day after day till I got it done.”