Tuesday, 17 June 2014

I'm Writing A Book...

You may have seen from occasional tweets and blog post references that I am writing a book.  I have spent my entire life dreaming of seeing my name in print but never really doing much about it.

I'm a bit of an expert when it comes to starting projects and never finishing them.  I have had countless amazing ideas for stories which I have begun with much enthusiasm and then just sort of drifted away from them.  It's not just writing where this is a problem, just take a peek in my sewing box to see the many and varied unfinished cross stitch projects...


I was inspired to write this book in June last year whilst we were on holiday in Brantome, in the South of France.  I began it with much vigour and then, as usual, began to drift away from it.  In September I quit my job to be a full time writer but ended up picking up freelance work to help keep us afloat and so again, not much time was given to the writing of the novel.

In November I joined in with NaNoWriMo, convinced that I could get my 50,000 words written and...you've probably guessed the pattern by now.  

The trouble was, I couldn't get the characters out of my head.  They would pop in, unannounced at the most inconvenient of times and I found the only way to avoid putting a dirty load of washing in my freezer instead of the washing machine was to start noting the thoughts down as and when they arrived.  These thoughts started to become a bit more coherent until I had whole scenes unfolding in my head.  I would drift off to sleep imagining the next part of my story until I really had no choice but to sit down and start to write.

I feel determined to finish the book this time, for the first time, and have set myself the aim of writing 1,000 words a day.  I have even sent my book out to some friends and family to ask their thoughts which, as anyone who knows me can tell you, was the most terrifying thing I have ever had to do; it was even more scary than being charged down by an African Bull Elephant whilst trapped in an open sided jeep which was stuck in a sand dune in the middle of an African safari...and that was fairly worrying.

The thing is that they haven't all subtly suggested I find another career either, which is somewhat encouraging.

So amongst the freelance writing to help keep food on the table, the making sure I turn up to school on time with Meg wearing the right clothes and don't leave Eli behind accidentally and everything else, I am actually writing a book.

I'm doing it.

For real.

Want a sneak peek?

Hugo Bertrand tightened his face in what Isabelle hoped was a smile, but feared was a snarl.  She squeezed Anais’ hand involuntarily as Hugo assessed her.  ‘Ahh, la fille anglaise,’ his voice was deep and gruff, as though it had been a long time since he’d spoken.  ‘Oui, I’m Martha’s sister.  I’m helping with the children today,’ she gestured, noting as she briefly turned that Benjamin and Louis had vanished.  Hugo nodded, hard.  ‘Oui, je sais.’  Isabelle frowned, as Anais translated again.  Hugo had clearly understood what she was saying, but made no effort to speak English to her.  Isabelle wasn’t sure why this irritated her so much, and was just about to move on when suddenly, Hugo reached towards her.  Automatically she took a step back, feeling her stomach contract in irrational terror before realising he was simply reaching past her to close the car door.  She laughed nervously and Hugo turned towards her as if to say something else, before nodding hard again, climbing into his car and driving off, leaving Isabelle standing at the side of the road feeling like she’d just done ten rounds with a heavyweight boxer.

Hugo Bertrand slowed his car down as he turned the corner past the school and tried to calm his racing heart.  That girl, that fille anglaise, why had she affected him so?  He shuddered, when she had looked at him, it felt like she was seeing right into his soul.  Right into the very depths where all those things were buried.  Things nobody had the right to know.  Hugo flinched as he saw Isabelle in his rear view mirror crossing the road.  She paused as she stepped off the pavement and glanced up the road towards his SUV.  He cursed under his breath, not wanting her to recognise him but knowing in such an obvious statement car, she was bound to.  He took a deep breath, cleared his mind and roared off.

As of this morning I am 32,000 words in and I think even if I tried to, I couldn't stop now.  My hope is to have it finished in the next month and then I will need to edit it, and find someone to create me a cover so I can self-publish, but I know that I have a bit more work to do before then.

I just wanted to share exciting news that this time, I am not going to give up before it gets completed.  Even if that's only because I'm being stalked by my own fictional creations.

2 comments:

  1. Emma The Mini Mes and Me17 June 2014 at 22:49

    Go you!! Life often gets in the way when it comes to our dreams but it looks like you are almost there xx

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  2. Well done!! I am so excited for you - as you know, I am in a similar boat right now. I am unsure how good mine will be, but I love writing and so I am just doing it!

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