My third book is published on Thursday, January 12. If you’d told me aged 10 I would grow up to be an author, I would have called you a pillock.

And then I would have pictured myself swathed in exotic fabrics, residing in a flower-filled mansion, only pausing from dictating my next novel to my secretary to eat a chocolate truffle.

I’m not sure where a tomboy from Watford got that image. I assume I’d seen a photo of Barbara Cartland.

As with all childhood dream jobs, the reality is a lot less glamorous.

Take today, for example. My latest crime thriller, Watch Me, will be published at one minute past midnight.

You would think Thursday would be spent in bed with Champagne, graciously accepting praise and reviews, before heading to a big party up west.

In reality, I shall probably be squashed into a corner of Starbucks in Canada Square, knackered, frantically writing last-minute copy for the blog tour.

And fielding social media messages about any errors that made it past me, my editor, copy editor, and proof reader.

I swear there’s a secret club of pedants dedicated to finding the one misplaced comma in books. They probably have a points system and a loyalty card. Definitely a branded tie clip.

But despite my distinct lack of secretary and mansion (I do, to be fair, eat a lot of chocolate), I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I am one of those rare people who truly love their job.

To everyone who wonders whether this is the year to follow their dreams, I say do it. It’s not how you imagined it would be. It’s far better.

Watch Me by Angela Clarke is available in all good bookshops and online .

Follow Angela on Twitter @TheAngelaClarke .

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