Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

A book deal and 30 countries before 30: how this woman's broken engagement changed her life for the better

backpacker.PNG

Four years ago, Katy Collins was, in her words, heartbroken and disillusioned after her husband-to-be called off their wedding just a month before they were meant to be exchanging vows.

But ramping up the old ‘Look how much fun I'm having!’ Facebook pictures, she decided to sell nearly everything she owned to go and “live the biggest life I could” by hitting the backpacker trail in countries such as Thailand, Dubai, India and Brazil.

And now the 30-year-old has landed a three-book publishing deal.

Collins, from Formby but now living in France, confessed everyone thought she was “mad” when she sold her house and car to jet off, especially as she'd never travelled solo before, but told Manchester Evening News, “It just felt right.

“I needed the time away from everything and everyone I knew to find myself, but it wasn't as cheesy as that.”

Blogging along the way to keep family and friends updated, her experiences soon attracted a following as she visited 30 countries before the age of 30. Looking back, she now says splitting from her fiancé was the best thing that could have happened to her.

“His decision, although devastating at the time, was the wake-up call I needed. I had a good job, a lovely house and lived a comfortable lifestyle but it lacked adventure […]

“[Now] I have climbed an active volcano in Chile, slept in a Thai jungle, got covered in Holi paint in India, skydived in France, and even taken a flight past Mount Everest. I've experienced things that I would never have dreamed possible but the highlight is being able to call myself a writer. Nothing compares to that.”

Collins is now penning The Lonely Hearts Travel Club series, loosely based on her own experiences. The first book is out this month, and she revealed during the interview that the date she found out she'd got a deal was a reminder of how different her life is now.

“Ironically an editor called me on what would have been our third wedding anniversary,” she explained. “It is poignant to think how far I’d come through hard work, being brave and wanting to live the biggest life I could.”

She says on her blog: “Getting dumped ain’t pretty and even worse is being a jilted bride a month before the big day. But every cloud has a silver lining and I hope I am proof that from a crappy situation good and amazing things can still happen.”

Follow her on Instagram and find her blog, Not Wed or Dead, here.

Related

12224091_211391162525982_303979219_n(1).jpg

We speak to the model who ran a 'realistic' Instagram account

ThinkstockPhotos-488392916.jpg

Jilted bride's family donates £22k wedding feast to homeless

rexfeatures_5195137a.jpg

Airbnb reveals the best neighbourhoods in the world

coddington.JPG

This fashion editor reveals what she really thinks about Instagram

cycling.jpg

Six women who've traded the 9-5 office haul for a life less ordinary

wedding.jpg

Jilted bride holds ceremonial 'trash the dress' fest

job-love.jpg

How to tell the difference between a job you like and a job you love

Liverpool.jpg

Revealed: the friendliest and most attractive cities in the UK

Screen Shot 2015-10-13 at 15.22.19.png

Meet the woman Bear Grylls turns to for advice on staying alive

Comments

More

Meet the woman walking 2,500 miles in memory of her best friend

"It's a love letter to Harriet from me, because I couldn’t tell her myself."

by Sarah Biddlecombe
21 Apr 2017

Everybody (yeah), are you ready for the Backstreet Boys cruise?

Backstreet’s back – and, this time, they’re on a boat

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Apr 2017

Jet lag could be cured by eye drops, study finds

There's hope for shift workers too...

by Anna Pollitt
18 Apr 2017

Why everyone’s calling Barack Obama an “Instagram husband”

A picture of the former POTUS taking a photo of his wife on holiday has gone viral.

by Moya Crockett
18 Apr 2017

Dream internship: get paid to party in Ibiza and Cancun this summer

by Anna Brech
17 Apr 2017

Behold Europe's cheapest destination for a beach break this summer

Have your passports handy

by Anna Brech
14 Apr 2017

Biker ignores her ex's patronising advice for epic global road trip

He told her, “You couldn't handle it”

by Anna Brech
14 Apr 2017

These gorgeous views have been voted the 20 best in Britain

From wild mountain vistas to dreamy cityscapes

by Moya Crockett
13 Apr 2017

Get in some snow and spa time in La Rosière

Stylist slopes off for some relaxation in the French Alps

by The Stylist web team
11 Apr 2017

Mixing the old with the new in Marrakech

Bustling souks and delicious tagines

by The Stylist web team
10 Apr 2017