I’m recovering from another heavy cold. This is the second within three or four weeks -- so it seems the tone is set for the season.
I sailed through last winter without a sniff. But this year, it looks like I’ll be sneezing right through to spring. Not that this stops me working. No way! It does stop me returning a phone call, if an email will do, and the dust has reprieve from the hoover. And, of course, I’ve had deadlines on design projects, so my allocated sleeping hours have suffered too.
Yet, I feel inspired!
Now my first novel is ‘finished’ and on submission to agents, I had begun to work on its sequel, or, second in the series (I would love to write six). But I also have a rough outline and first chapter of a completely different story. A ghost story, with a fifteen-year-old protagonist named Daisy Pine. Two nights ago, I was so preoccupied with this story that I couldn’t sleep. I saw Daisy standing at the top of a flight of stairs, and she was smaller, younger, eleven-years-old to be precise. Then all sorts of bits and pieces, well, big things actually, like Daisy's circumstances and the ghosts' motivation, fell into place.
The essence of this story has been with me for a while, but I felt uncertain about writing a ghost story. The very first novel I seriously attempted was a psychological thriller. But spending so much time with a dark and frightening story just wasn’t me! There was no way I could stay with it and ditched it halfway through. For this reason, I didn’t want to rush headlong into a novel I couldn’t sustain. Then, a few weeks ago, I wrote a short ghost story (with midget ghosts ;)) and survived! I didn’t frighten myself to death or turn into a totally strange and scary person.
I’m now really excited about this new novel, and want to write it with momentum, without all the stops and starts that have plagued my previous writing. I’ve set a deadline of the end of March for the first draft. It’s doable, so long as fire and flood stay away from my door!
Thursday, 13 December 2007
I've just read in the comments section on Patricia Wood's blog, that she wrote the first draft of Lottery between January and March. I take that as a very good sign.