Holly Seddon

Author of Try Not to Breathe

I'm an author living in the centre of Amsterdam. My first novel, Try Not to Breathe, was published in January 2016.

What Nobody Tells You About Your Book Being Published

It's been a month since my debut novel Try Not to Breathe came out in the UK, Ireland, Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand, and another couple of weeks before it comes out in America and then Germany. It's been thrilling, numbing, weird, wonderful and at times, raw and scary. I'm prouder than I thought possible but I've also learned a few things along the way.
09/02/2016 13:59 GMT

Bieber and the Bittersweet Memories: This Is Not About Us

Now maybe it's just because I follow a Twitter echo chamber of thirty and forty-somethings who are just like me, but it does seem like a hefting chunk of the people up in arms about the Bieber cover are people for whom getting the NME was a highlight of their weeks, like twenty odd years ago. I think we need to butt out, we need to let it go. For our sake.
13/11/2015 12:43 GMT

Why I Gave Up All of My Plans, Permanently

If you spend your life focussing on an end goal or set of end goals, with tight timescales, you're setting yourself up to either fail (because who on earth can hope to hit every goal) or miss out on an awful lot by racing to the finish.
17/09/2015 12:06 BST

If I Wrote My Debut Novel Again, Here's What I'd Do Differently

In the same way that you'll only ever have one first kiss, you only get one shot at your debut novel. I mean, you'll redraft and edit it 10 million times, but you only do the whole process once. And it's about trial, error, heartbreak and pride.
01/09/2015 17:19 BST

I've Been an Immigrant for a Month, Here's What I've Learned

I've spent 35 years slowly absorbing cultural ticks and unspoken rules in England. I thought I knew the main differences that would arise. I knew that Dutch people were more direct and that no one besides Brits start almost every sentence with "Sorry" but it's so much deeper than that.
01/09/2015 11:38 BST

A Love Letter to All the Libraries

Libraries are so much more than books. They are still relevant, they are still vital. They will help the next generation of readers and writers to find their feet, the next generation of young and skint parents to give their kids a love of reading that costs nothing, the next generation of job seekers a route to apply for employment if they don't have online access of their own.
17/08/2015 15:49 BST

Why Stories are More Important Than Books

Growing up, my Dad didn't read to me at bedtime. Instead, he did something far better. He used to make up stories. Freestyle. Freestyle! And I took this completely for granted.
03/08/2015 12:32 BST

Our Son Is Called Finch, Yes, After That One

Baby Finch is one of many whose name choice was influenced by a character who has now been shown to have had deeply unpalatable sides. Sides that are grossly offensive in our modern context (sides that would have been rightly offensive to many people when they were concieved of too, of course). And these sides were previously unknown outside of the mind of his creator.
15/07/2015 13:22 BST

So You Want to be a Novelist?

So I wanted to be an author. Perhaps like others in the 60%, I had the romantic idea of a desk, an old typewriter (in reality, I had a Windows 486 PC...), pots of coffee and French cigarettes. I wanted to be an author SO BADLY that when I left college, I became... a call centre operative.
24/02/2015 15:33 GMT

Heroines of STEM: Time for Some Flag Waving?

My daughter recently had to do a project for her science home work. She was making a board game that involved great scientists. Of course there was Einstein, Peter Higgs, Dmitri Mendeleev, Euclid, Joseph Black, Jan Van Helmont, Galileo, Schrödinger (and his cat)... Only the cat wasn't male. And that was because it was a theoretical cat.
23/04/2014 13:31 BST

Calling a Spade a... Boys' Toy?

Does gender classification of toys really affect kids? Peter Jenkinson, a great toy expert let out a sigh and began... "Just this week Toys R Us have agreed, after some pressure, to remove BOYS and GIRLS classification signage from UK stores."
16/09/2013 13:19 BST

Relive my teens? Not on Your life

You're telling me you didn't make mistakes at 15? Thank God there weren't digital cameras or digital footprints 20 years ago. You couldn't pay me to be 15. Or any -teen. My own daughter turns 12 tomorrow. The last island before she hits the wild seas of the teenage years.
16/08/2013 10:18 BST

Should You Undo Your Own Digital Footprint?

In 2013, my own kids just have to be able to scroll back far enough on my Facebook Timeline to see exactly the last time I got horrendously drunk and allowed someone to tag a picture of me (or was too pie-eyed to stop them), or to see me mouthing off about something, dropping the F-bomb all over the place.
15/07/2013 15:17 BST

Should We Ask Our kids' Permission Before Posting Online?

I think the way we invade the private lives of others including our children have reached a point where we all need to step back for a moment and re-assess how we live as humans. On the one hand a comment about our children can be innocent enough as part of our daily social lives and conversations.
09/07/2013 14:05 BST

Five Creative Apps Every Kid Should Try

Technology has a lot levelled at its robotic feet. Well, scratch below the headlines and you'll find that a) you'd be hard-pressed to avoid technology given that pretty much anything man-made counts as tech and b) there are oodles and oodles of examples of apps, games, websites and hardware helping kids to channel and explore their creativity.
28/06/2013 13:32 BST

'School Is a Building, Education Is Wherever I Am'

When I was younger, people who were home educated - not that I knew any - were in the same bucket as those odd balls without a telly. Of course now my family barely watches any broadcast TV and we're far from alone. Similarly, I'm fully converted to the concept that home education is not the preserve of weirdos and the extremely religious.
22/06/2013 20:44 BST

Our Kids Could Learn A Lot From Ricky Gervais

Gervais explained: "Scientific studies of creativity have basically concluded that it can't be taught, as it is a 'facility' rather than a learned skill. Putting it very crudely, creativity is the ability to play. And, to be able to turn that facility on and off when necessary. This makes perfect sense to me.
14/06/2013 09:19 BST