AN AUTHOR who writes from her family’s beach hut in Hengistbury Head is celebrating the launch of her second novel.

Lucy Clarke, who lives in Springbourne, said years of rejections from publishing firms did not deter her from fulfilling her dream of become a full-time author.

Her debut novel the Sea Sisters was selected for the Richard and Judy Summer Book Club 2013 and sold more 60,000 copies.

On Thursday, March 27, the 32-year-old officially launched her second book, A Single Breath, at the Boathouse in Christchurch.

“It was completely packed-out,” she said.

“It was great to have so many people there.”

Miss Clarke, who grew up in Burley in the New Forest, spent years trying to get published before securing a four-book deal with the publishing firm Harper Collins.

She said: “It’s tough for anyone trying to become a published author. It took me eight years. I used to run a business and wrote alongside it and now I write as my job.

“It was years of rejections but I finally got the book deal with Harper Collins and it was wonderful.”

Mrs Clarke said being selected for Richard and Judy’s Summer Book Club helped to raise her profile and the novel has since been published in ten different languages.

“Last year Sea Sisters came out and just before it came out I was told it had been selected for Richard and Judy’s Summer Book Club. It’s one of the best things that can happen for a new author.

“It raises your profile. People heard about my book who otherwise would never have seen it.”

Hoping her latest novel will share the same level of success Mrs Clarke said the past year had been a dream come true.

She said: “It’s been incredible.

“It’s what every new author would hope for.”

A Single Breath costs £7.99 and is available in bookshops now.