This week I fired off Takeback to my publishers.
It’s lined up for a July 2018 publication at the moment, which means a fairly long wait until it sees the light of day. Just in case you’re wondering… (go on, admit it, you’re wondering. You are) …this is the 8th iteration of the novel, and comes in at about 66,000 words. I’ve tried, really tried in the past to plot out every last scene of a book and motor through looking calm and composed. But it just doesn’t work for me. I find it virtually impossible to actually put words down once a story’s all neatly planned.
I was relieved to hear Lisa Williamson say something similar at the St Helens Book Awards recently (Lifers was shortlisted – Yey! – but didn’t win – AARGH…) when she explained to the audience how she might spend weeks writing scenes that don’t make it into the final draft because she can’t tell precisely where the story’s going to go until it actually does.
I’m the same. I know the direction of travel roughly. I know the destination; the rest just sorta happens.
Aa-nyway, now Takeback’s being read and considered, I’m in the Hangfire Smokehouse until I hear more. (The what? I hear you ask. Check out the tab at the top of the page, pal. All will be revealed.) This particular stint in the Hangfire is different from others because I have non-fiction work to finish for a May deadline, so that’s right up in my face at the moment.
After that though, I’ll be building ideas. And I have tons. Loads; piles. Plenty. OK, an elegant sufficiency. OK, two. I’ve got two.
Someone recently told be the secret to generating good ideas was ‘the 3 Bs of creativity’. Familiar? No, me neither. They are: bed (sleep on it) bath (meditative quiet, basically) or bus (a metaphor, this one. Movement, travel, fresh environments.) So that’s where I’ll be for the first week or so of May.
Two ideas, three Bs. What could possibly go wrong.