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And, as this was in the days before the internet and mobile phones, I had a choice - I could either learn to love books or I could die of boredom.
So I learnt to love books and pretty soon my love of reading grew into a love of writing and I dreamt of one day having a shelf of books that I had written.
At eighteen I set off for uni in pursuit of my dream, to study English Literature.
But two years into my degree, I become plagued by the fear that I just didn't have what it took to become a professional writer.
I came from a much poorer background than most of my fellow students and I started to feel that people from council estates didn't belong in the middle class world of publishing.
So I dropped out of uni and ended up working in the complaints department for a frozen food company where all I wrote were grovelling apology letters to irate customers. (This is the tragic low point of my story).
After four years of working in jobs I hated I came to an important realisation: life can be a very dull and dark place when you don't dare to dream.
So, I dusted off my literary dreams and instead of seeing writing as some kind of rarefied world solely for the silver-spooned, I decided to approach it as I would any other job, starting small and working my way up.
I began my quest writing short stories for weekly women's magazines (the kind of magazines with headlines like: 'The Day My Womb Fell Out!' or 'OMG - my Granddad Reincarnated as my Goldfish!')
Then I wrote some articles.
Having short stories and articles published gave me the confidence to finally have a go at writing my first book.
Fast forward 20 years and I've now had over 30 books published and I've won 3 book awards. Moral of the story - never give up on your dreams.
My personal experience of almost giving up on my writing dreams has made me passionate about helping others with their writing.
Over the years, I've helped thousands of writers through my coaching, editing, talks and workshops.
For more information please visit:
Facebook: Siobhan Curham Author
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1940, London: An unforgettable novel about the strength of the human spirit in the face of war and the remarkable women who put themselves in danger on the front lines during the Battle of Britain.
As a volunteer for the ambulance service, Ruby has the dangerous task of driving along pitch-dark roads during the blackout. With each survivor she pulls from the rubble, she is helping to fight back against the enemy bombers, who leave nothing but destruction in their wake.
She’s assigned to work with Joseph, who will stop at nothing to save innocent victims of war. Because he is not in uniform, people treat him with suspicion. But as Ruby watches him save a young child from a building that may collapse at any moment, she becomes determined to protect this brave, compassionate man. Even if it means making an unthinkable choice between saving her own life and risking everything for his…
2019: Recently divorced Edi feels lost and alone when she moves to London to start a new life. Until she makes a discovery, hidden beneath a loose floorboard in her attic, that that reveals the story of the woman who lived there in the 1940s. She gradually pieces together a life full of danger, love and betrayal and becomes inspired by Ruby’s heroism. But as Edi uncovers more about Ruby, she realises that the house holds the key to a devastating wartime secret and that the truth can be a dangerous thing…
A sweeping tale of bravery, self-sacrifice, and the legacy that can be left behind by a single act of courage. Perfect for fans of The Alice Network, The Secret Messenger and The Lost Girls of Paris.
Readers are loving Beyond This Broken Sky:
‘Just absolutely beautiful. Loved loved loved this amazing book. Poignant, heartbreaking and yet joyful. A wonderful book… It is an absolute triumph.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘This amazing story is a wonderful must read… Once I started the story I couldn’t put it down. It is definitely a book you can’t help but to devour it in one sitting… Will have you up all night flying through the pages… A phenomenal story, I absolutely loved it.’ Page Turners, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘Fantastic… I don't want to give the unique twists of this story away… But suffice it to say that you won’t want to put this one down!’ 2 Bags Full, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘Once you start reading this book you won’t want to put it down… It had me reading into the early hours of the morning… A real rollercoaster of emotion… I totally loved this book.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘Fabulous… Great historical fiction… Can highly recommend.
As Nazi troops occupy Paris, American journalist Florence is determined to save her adopted home and the man she loves.
Florence arrived in the city in 1937 on a beautiful summer’s day, with dreams of adventure, and fell in love with Otto, an artist with the most beautiful smile she had ever seen. Otto left his homeland to escape persecution, but now, as swastikas are draped along the city’s wide boulevards, everything he was running from has caught up with him.
Florence and Otto begin work with the Resistance to sabotage the Germans right under their noses. Florence’s society columns now document life with food shortages, curfews and constant fear, and contain hidden coded messages for the Allies. While Otto pins up the anti-Nazi posters he designs by candlelight in their tiny apartment, knowing he would be shot on sight if caught.
But with every passing day, Paris becomes more dangerous and the fight for freedom seems more hopeless than ever. When Otto is arrested and imprisoned, Florence feels she might finally be beaten, until she is offered a secret mission to help turn the tide of the war in Europe. If she accepts, she has a chance of saving Otto. But she could also lose her own life in the attempt…
A sweeping wartime story of the enduring power of love, the devastating cruelty of war and resilience of the human spirit. This is a novel that will capture your heart and never let it go. Fans of The Alice Network, The Lost Girls of Paris and The Nightingale will be absolutely gripped from the very first page.
Readers love An American in Paris:
‘A dazzling and sweeping tale of love… Unforgettable.’ Bookish Jottings, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘It WILL be one of those novels that EVERYONE talks about for a long, long time.’ Bibliomiast, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘A gripping wartime drama that will have your heart in your mouth.’ French Village Diaries, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘I can honestly say it is divine and I simply adored it… The book is truly beautiful… It is a real gem of a book and a fantastic read that I encourage all those who love historical fiction to pick up.’ Whispering Stories Book Blog, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘An enthralling story that puts readers in the middle of the chaos surrounding World War Two… Grabs readers from the beginning and won’t let them go until they finish the last page… I loved absolutely everything about this novel and won’t hesitate to claim it as my favourite historical fiction read of 2020.’ Goodreads Reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘I loved every second of this book… Teaches us to be strong and that true love can give you a strength you never knew existed… I highly recommend curling up with this lovely story and reading it from cover to cover!’ Goodrea
It’s a scorching May Bank Holiday and Caitlin Kennedy’s marriage is in meltdown, her daughter dreams of being adopted by Miley Cyrus and her four-year-old son has just declared that he wishes to be renamed Daphne. Where did it all go so wrong? In a bid to find out, Caitlin retrieves her long lost diary from 1984 and is sent hurtling back into her past. Back to a time where fashion crimes were committed on a daily basis, the striking miners were at war with the government and a hopelessly romantic teenager embarked upon a search for true love. As we journey back with Caitlin, we slowly piece together the events that changed the course of her life so dramatically. But there are still pieces missing from the jigsaw; pieces that Caitlin has been too scared to search out before. Forced to confront her past for once and for all, Caitlin uncovers a shocking twist in the tale of her first love with young striking miner, Jed.
A story of overcoming loss, letting go of the past, and the heart-warming power of true love.
"A sheer delight." OK magazine
“What does it mean to be in love? How do we move on? These and so many more questions are explored in this novel, which makes it perfect for adults and young adults alike. Siobhan’s writing fast becomes addictive. I never wanted to stop reading and I lost myself in Caitlin’s world. This book is one of my favourites and always will be.”
“It’s back to the eighties with this hilarious and poignant take of the path we choose to walk and what could have been, had we taken another route in our teens.”
“I have read this book over ten times . . . I always fall in love with the characters, laugh out loud and end up in tears towards the end. Hands down the best book I have ever read.”
“I don’t know of any other writer who mixes comedy and tragedy so effortlessly. I was laughing on one page and crying a few pages later. Far deeper than ‘chick lit’.”
“I smiled, laughed and cried . . . You should read this if you’re having an identity crisis because it will make you remember who you truly are.”
“This book starts as it means to go on, so make sure you have plenty of time because when you begin to read it, you cannot put it down.”
“My teenage years came flooding back. I am buying this book for my best friend of over thirty years as the eighties were our stomping ground too.”
“Nice twist at the end. I did not see that coming!”
Have you ever wondered if there might be something more to life?
When Siobhan Curham decided to write a book about happiness there was only one small problem, which became a massive problem as soon as she sat down to write - she wasn't truly happy.
Not wanting to be a fraud, Siobhan set out to discover the secret to true and lasting happiness. Her quest took her on an unexpected path deep into the heart of the world's spiritual traditions.
Something More is a funny and moving account of Siobhan's journey, as she found religion - and promptly lost it again - then went on to develop her own spiritual 'pick and mix' of practises from Buddhist chanting, Irish yoga, Jewish philosophy and Reiki healing, to connecting with her inner goddess and finding her shamanic spirit animal (who, it turns out, was a large, black, talking horse).
Full of brutally honest anecdotes and age-old wisdom, Something More is for anyone who has ever thought about exploring their spiritual side, and those who might feel disillusioned by organised religion but still crave that elusive 'something more'. After all, who wouldn't want to find inner peace and everlasting happiness?
An unforgettable story of friendship, self-belief and love. Amber, Maali, Sky and Rose are not like everyone else and they don't want to be. Becoming friends gives them the courage to be themselves.
A inspirational, heart-warming book about four girls trying to find their place in the world. Siobhan Curham celebrates very different but like-minded friends in this captivating novel.
Amber craves excitement and adventure. Instead, she’s being bullied at school for having two dads, and life at home isn’t much better. Inspired by Oscar Wilde, Amber realizes that among the millions of people in London, there must be others who feel the same as she does; other dreamers – moonlight dreamers. After chance encounters with Maali, Sky and Rose, Amber soon recruits the three girls to the Moonlight Dreamers. It’s high time they started pursuing their dreams, and how better than with the support of friends?
DARE TO WRITE A NOVEL guides you through every stage of the novel-writing process, from overcoming blocks and fears, coming up with ideas, developing characters, creating vivid fictional worlds and crafting plots... to editing your work and pitching to agents and publishers. In the book I draw upon everything I've learned as an award-winning author and editorial consultant working with many of the top UK publishing houses, such as Faber & Faber, Hodder & Stoughton, Random House, Penguin, Walker Books, Scholastic and Egmont. I've also helped thousands of writers through my workshops, talks and one-to-one coaching. It's long been a dream of mine to put everything I've learned as a writing teacher into a book, so creating DARE TO WRITE A NOVEL has been a real labour of love.
DARE TO WRITE A NOVEL also includes: Audio recordings of creative visualisations and pep talks / worksheets / an industry-approved book proposal template / expert advice from literary agents and publishers / Informative, entertaining - and occasionally embarrassing(!) - anecdotes from my writing career.
‘I went to Siobhan when I was pretty much down and out in writing terms. We talked, I cried a bit and laughed a lot and having listened to her wise words, came away enthused to start afresh. I did, and my new attitude has brought good luck and success.’ Anna May Mangan, best-selling author of Me and Mine and radio and TV broadcaster
‘Siobhan is great. I worked with her on my first book, Liquid Millionaire, and I was so impressed with her attitude and expertise that she had to be my number one choice for my second book. I strongly recommend and endorse her whole-heartedly.’ Stephen Sutherland, Chief Investment Strategist, ISACO
‘I worked with Siobhan at a time of uncertain of uncertainty and change in my writing career and I found our coaching conversations gave me fresh insights and a genuinely new perspective on my situation. The coaching calls still resonate with me as I move into a new phase of my work. I truly appreciate her wisdom.’ Jacqui Lofthouse, author of The Temple of Hymen, Bluethroat Morning and The Modigliani Girl
‘Siobhan Curham is a plot alchemist! Her honest, insightful and supportive feedback has shown me how I might transform my thin story into a coherent, fully-developed plot. She is completely on your side and wants you to succeed. I feel hopeful for the first time in a long time.' Lisa Berry
‘Siobhan is one of the most gifted writers I have worked with in the last fifteen years. Subtleties of character, tone and plotting seem to come easily to her. And what’s more she’s a joy to work with – a true professional.’ Leah Thaxton, Publisher, Faber & Faber
‘Siobhan not only knows how to craft a terrific story, but she writes with wit and intelligence, creating characters you believe in long after the last page. Her writing is up-beat, life-affirming and full of that rare and wonderful ingredient: heart.’ Mara Bergman, Senior Commissioning Editor, Walker Books
‘I’ve seen Siobhan at every stage of the creative process and she’s one of the very best.
Stranded on a desert island, faced with a terrible secret … This is Shipwrecked. Lost meets We Were Liars for young adult readers of E.Lockhart, John Green and Zoella.
I jump at the sound of a whispered voice over my shoulder. But when I turn all I see is sand, and the towering, green wall of the rainforest. I guess it must have been the breeze, but I can’t help shivering. I have the weirdest feeling we’re being watched. Grace Delaney and her fellow dance students are en route to perform on a South Pacific cruise-ship when a freak storm hits and they find themselves stranded on a deserted island. With the tropical heat rising, passions and tensions swell to breaking point. And the island itself is quietly steaming with a terrible secret …
Shipwrecked is a heartpounding new series from rising star Siobhan Curham. Combining romance, mystery, secrets, betrayal and even voodoo in a steamy, tropical island setting, these books for teens promise to set the pulse racing.
‘Siobhan Curham is a name to watch’ – Cathy Cassidy
Siobhan Curham is the author of the addictive YA romantic thriller series Shipwrecked. She is the editorial consultant and writing coach for Zoe Sugg (Zoella), the You Tube vlogger and author of the bestselling blockbuster Girl Online series. She is an editor for Hothouse fiction, a life-coach, the author of several adult novels and she runs writing workshops for young people. Her award-winning YA novels also include Dear Dylan and Finding Cherokee Brown.
Their poetry and art will change the world.
Rudy is a street artist; Clementine is a poet. The day after Rudy sneaks out late one night and posts her first piece of artwork, Clem discovers it, awestruck. She takes a photo, writes a poem in response and posts them together on Instagram. Soon the two fifteen-year-olds meet and begin their unique friendship, one that nurtures creativity and results in a special creative collaboration. The girls may be from very different backgrounds, and experiencing difficulties at home, but each strives to be true to herself and follow her dreams.
An uplifting story of friendship, unity and hope that highlights the important and topical issues surrounding young carers and young refugees.
Fourteen-year-old Stevie lives in Lewes with her beloved vinyl collection, her mum ... and her mum's depression. When Stevie's mum's disability benefits are cut, Stevie and her mother are plunged into a life of poverty. But irrepressible Stevie is determined not to be beaten and she takes inspiration from the lyrics of her father's 1980s record collection and dreams of a life as a musician. Then she meets Hafiz, a talented footballer and a Syrian refugee. Hafiz's parents gave their life savings to buy Hafiz a safe passage to Europe; his journey has been anything but easy. Then he meets Stevie...
As Stevie and Hafiz's friendship grows, they encourage each other to believe in themselves and follow their dreams.
Powerful, romantic and real. Perfect for fans of Cathy Cassidy, Zoella's Girl Online and Sarah Dessen. The much-anticipated sequel to award-winning debut novel, Dear Dylan.
His lips touched mine and for one split second the whole world stopped. Then every cell in my body fizzed into life …
When I decided to write a book about my life I thought I’d have to make loads of stuff up. I mean, who wants to read about someone like me? But as soon as I started writing, the weirdest thing happened. I found out I wasn’t who I thought I was. And I stopped being scared. Then everything went crazy! Best of all, I discovered that when you finally decide to be brave it’s like waving a wand over your life – the most magical things can happen …
Praise for Dear Dylan:
‘Tender, quirky, cool. Siobhan Curham is a name to watch’ – Cathy Cassidy
‘Funny, full of heart … I couldn’t get enough’ – Lauren’s Bookshelf
‘Touching, emotional, special’ – So Many Books, So Little Time
Siobhan Curham is the award-winning author of Dear Dylan. Finding Cherokee Brown is the heart-wrenching sequel. She is the editorial consultant and writing coach for Zoe Sugg (Zoella), the You Tube vlogger and author of the bestselling blockbuster Girl Online series. She is an editor for Hothouse fiction, a life-coach, the author of several adult novels and she runs writing workshops for young people. Her brilliant YA novels also include the addictive YA romantic thriller series, Shipwrecked.
'If you could recreate any movie scene and cast yourself in the lead role, which would you choose?'
This chance remark made late one night over the counter of a North London video store brings together four very different characters with hilarious and dramatic consequences.
United only by their love of film, Sadie, Lana, Liam and Tel join forces to recreate cinematic history, discovering along the way that friendship, trust and even love can spring from the most unlikely of sources.
Once again, Siobhan Curham has mixed the elements of comedy with heart-wrenching tragedy, creating a warm and poignant tale that will cause laughter and tears with every turn of the page.
In this heart-warming, humorous and inspirational collection, award-winning author and life coach Siobhan Curham dares you to chase after your wildest dreams and live, love and create with confidence, passion and imagination.
With musings on overcoming fear, how to write a book in a month, mastering meditation, mindfulness for beginners, dating with confidence, falling in love with your career, spirituality without religion, and many, many more, this is a trusty companion in book form - perfect for dipping into for daily inspiration.
Dare to Dream includes some of the most popular posts from Siobhan's award-winning blog, plus over 200 pages of previously unpublished material on life, love and creativity.
£1 from every copy of this book sold will be donated to the charity Leuka; helping find a cure for leukaemia.