Eight novels in five years - this writer is no Dreamer
LJ HIGGINS is a full time mother, wife and novel writing machine.
In five years she has hammered out a staggering eight novels for young adult readers but admits it's not always easy.
"There's nothing more exciting than seeing my ideas and characters come to life on the page when the words are flowing easily," she said.
Also, being a young mum meant having to find time to write when she could.
"When I started I still had my two children at home so I after they'd gone to bed I'd write until the early hours of the morning," she said.
But those long nights spent tapping away on her own into the wee hours paid off when her first book, Dawn of the Dreamer, was published.
"I'd dreamed of writing a book for years so holding it in my hand for the first time was a real sense of achievement.
It was the beginning of something new and exciting but I was nervous to see if it was a story people would enjoy. I get the same feeling with every book I publish," Ms Higgins said.
Since then she has completed the two other books in the Dreamer Trilogy, two contemporary novels and The Secrets of Aurora trilogy.
Ms Higgin's writing could be described as dystopian, or in her own words as, "Divergent meets The 100."
One reviewer wrote that her Aurora series was, "A fast-paced, edge of your seat sci-fi adventure, peppered with great characters and incredible world building."
Dawn of the Dreamer was self-published and even though she has since signed with a publisher Ms Higgins plans on continuing with some self-publishing in future.
She says both styles have their pros and cons and advises people hoping to get published to be honest with themselves about what they really want to gain by publishing a book.
"Research both options but neither guarantee instant success as each require hard work and dedication," she said.
When Ms Higgins isn't busy being a mum or writing her latest novel, she's researching, dancing, blogging, organising sales, reading or helping fellow local writers.
She says the best thing any aspiring writer can do is join a local writing group or find a group of writers to help keep you motivated and write.
There are days when I don't seem to be able to get through a scene or I'm not happy with how the words are coming out.
"I have a group of author friends who are great at picking each other up on the days we question ourselves and our writing," she said.
LJ Higgin's eighth novel, Secrets of Aurora Book 3, will be released on the 26 March and the final book of the series is scheduled for mid-2018.
The dystopian future in her novels may dark and mysterious but Ms Higgin's phenomenal output guarantees her writing future certainly looks bright.