I’m really enjoying writing the new book. As I have said many times in the past, starting a book project is always the most difficult thing. Tehre is nothing more off putting than looking at that empty page template in MS Word, wondering what you are going to fill it with.
There have been times when I’ve gone straight from one big project to another without gap – but those times have been rare. I finished the actual writing process of ‘Bringing home the stars’ back in around February/March 2009 I think. I then leapt immediately into writing ‘The long summer of war’ (novella) and several short stories without even pausing for breath. After that, I seemed to get bogged down with my nemesis, editing. I edited BHTS more times than I care to imagine, honing and honing it. When it found an interested agent, I moved on to editing another of my older works, so that I had at least a few things on standby in case commercial success was quick in beginning, and they wanted more books and quickly.
In the last couple of weeks, the most up-to-date draft of BHTS has resided with the agent and there was nothing for me to do. I’ve been meaning to write a follow up since Na NoWriMo last year, but Lady insperation was not in the mood. You see, contrary to what my Mother thinks, you cannot just turn ‘the writing’ on or off on a whim. I have to actually want to write something. Yes, I did some stuff written to order in days gone by, but I hated it and I make no bones about it being a real chore. The idea of writng a whole book on a subject I hated and only tackled because I was told to fills me with dread.
But always on the cards were a couple of projects. In the end I plumped for a loose follow-up to BHTS. Why? Because my theory goes that BHTS is far more saleable and attractive to a mainstream publisher, if there is a follow-up ready to go in the same style and genre that can be seen and read and its quality is a known quantity. I’ve been pondering the plot for a while, but now it really is starting to take shape. I’m over 11,500 words now and it grows steadily by the day. Actually, I’ve got an enthusiasm about this that I haven’t had since writing BHTS over the Christmas of 2008/9. That is good, because there is nothing worse than writing to a deadline and hating every word of the text you are typing. It also shows in the finished product to some degree.
I’m not going to think about a completion date. All going well, I’m aiming for about the same length as BHTS (approximately 90,000 words) but there is no hard and fast rule. Fingers crossed that the sequel will be as well received as the original. Ticker tape on stand-by…