Notes from a Writer’s Life #5

Limbo… then lift off… maybe…

The lesser-haired writer in his natural habitat…

So as we approach the end of week 2 of Bleak Waters edits it’s safe to say that those Bleak Waters have been pretty choppy of late.

To recap, the story as it stands is weak and needs some pretty hefty work, but that’s not unusual for a first draft, particularly for longer works.

For the past week or so I’ve been wrestling with the best way to fix the story’s many problems, and while I’ve had loads of good ideas, and have fixed some of the back story issues, whenever I’ve come to starting the rewriting process, I felt resistance.

Well, not so much resistance, more a massive brick wall that I keep beating my head against.

I figured I needed to really underpin exactly what the story was about, so I went back to one of my trusty writer’s guides; “Saves the Cat Writes a Novel” by Jessica Brody.

Going through the exercises in the book again (I’d already done this in the early stages of planning) was an eye opener because this time I was coming at them with a deeper understanding of the characters.

And it bought a moment of clarity.

I was writing the wrong person’s story.

The first draft had mainly been told from the point of view of Lily, who I believed was the main character of the story.

Turns out though, it may be Theo, who is a viewpoint character in the first draft, but not the main one.

On the commute to work this morning, I started rewriting the first chapter from Theo’s viewpoint.

And so far, so good. I haven’t written much, but what I have written doesn’t feel forced and I’m also not feeling the resistance that I was feeling with previous attempts.

I write this in the full knowledge that as I progress, this could all change, and by this time next week I could be drowning in a sea of screwed up bits of paper, but right now it feels right.

I’m also well aware that, if you’ve been following these posts, you may be wondering whether I actually know what I’m doing.

I’ll let you in on a little secret.

I don’t.

I write largely by intuition, by gut feeling. This does mean that I take wrong turns. It happened with Badlands and that turned out okay in the end. The important thing though is to persevere.

Because that’s the only way I’ll see Bleak Waters through to completion.

Badlands news!

Talking of Badlands, it continues to tick along nicely and I’m getting some good feedback from those readers I’m in touch with.

If you’re not aware, it’s a dark suspense story of Willow, a runaway with a wounded soul who is searching for her sister, and Raven, a scarred orphan with a lust for blood who is tracking her down.

It’s also the story of Richard Goddard, a man of God with a heart of darkness who is plotting both their downfalls.

Tackling themes of deception, betrayal, conspiracy, broken families and identity, it’s available from Amazon in Kindle, Kindle Unlimited or paperback format.

If you’d like a signed and hand numbered paperback copy, they’re available direct through my website.

Thanks to everyone who’s reading Badlands! It’s finally sunk in that it’s out in the world. And it’s a great feeling!!

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