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Diary of an aspiring chick lit author: Moving home

I moved all my stuff out of my apartment and into my mum's last night. It's funny how, when it boils down to it, your life consists of two black bin liners full of . . . stuff.

It's only now that I've come to realise how little I actually own. Still, it could be worse. As my mum keeps telling me, I have my health and losing my job could be the best kick in the arse I've ever gotten.

"You were stuck in a rut, love," she said to me on the phone this morning before she went to work (at least she has a job!). "Now you'll be able to sit back and really think about what you want from life. You were never happy working there. It was just a stop gap until you found something better -- and that was four years ago."

I spluttered into the phone at that point, trying to argue that I was perfectly happy at Healing Hands and that Orla was a dream to work for.

"If writing's what you want to do -- do it. There's no better time than now. Did I tell you about this book I'm reading, The Power of Now? I'll give it to you when I'm finished. Anyway, I've to go to a meeting. Bye."

Here we go. My mother is like Bridget Jones when it comes to reading self-help books and her newest discovery is Eckhart Tolle. The fact that he's an alumnus of Oprah's Book Club makes him more powerful than Barack Obama, as far as she's concerned.

It was 20 past nine and I was sitting amid by my bin bags, which I didn't have the energy to unpack.

I briefly considered turning on the telly to see if Daybreak was still on -- I wanted to see how Grainne Seoige is getting on in her new role, when the phone rang.

It was a UK number, but I still didn't want to answer in case it was some market researcher who might bully me into talking to them.

Turns out it was Lucy Lightfoot, that literary agent that I sent my first chapters off to. She said she liked them and wanted to see the whole novel when it's finished.

"Something something . . . two-book deal . . . never happened before."

"Erm, can you repeat that?" I croaked, as if English wasn't my first language.

This time she spoke slower. A major publisher wants to offer me a two-book deal on the basis of the first three chapters that Lucy showed them! But . . . there's always a but . . . they want to see the completed novel in its entirety first.

I told Lucy I'd call her back and started jumping around the living room. Then I phoned my mum.

"I told you everything happened for a reason!" she crowed. But I could tell she was delighted.

Time to get cracking. As my mother is fond of paraphrasing, now is the only thing we have.

Or something along those lines.