I’ve been tagged by the marvellous Mr. David Gullen in the latest writers’ Hive Mind message – ‘Share 5 Things About Your Current Work in Progress’. So, here goes.
- It’s a novel called Blue Shift. The title didn’t come to me until I’d been working on it for ages.
- It’s about a mildly psychic courier who is hired/kidnapped by a vampire to look for his missing wife… IN SPACE! So it does have vampires, but it also has 8 foot space goats, and a bimorphic fishy detective, and giant lizards who just wanna dance.
- The main character in Blue Shift is called Monday Morning, and she came from a short story written with the deliberate aim of fitting in as many terrible puns (are there any other kind?) as possible. Then I decided it should be extended to be the fun weekend novel to work on to take a break from my *ahem* serious novel. The serious novel was the dreadful thing I wrote longhand in 8 school exercise books about fairies in space*. I started trying to rewrite it, and eventually abandoned it because a) it was crap and b) I’d outgrown it and I no longer had any interest in the story.
- I have been (re)writing Blue Shift for a truly embarrassing length of time without ever completing a draft. I used to believe that it had to, and indeed ought to**, take a writer years and years to produce a book. I was disabused of that idea by my writers’ group. The T Party (nothing to do with American politics) now includes many published authors, who are expected to produce at least one polished book a year. I’m currently at about 72,000 words and pushing on to the end before I do any more rewriting.
- Right now, I’m at the stage where the novel and I aren’t speaking and I’d rather do the housework than figure out what happens next. According to my published friends this is entirely normal. I usually fix this by opening a new document and talking to myself on the page, typing questions and answers and random thoughts and what ifs until I see an idea and a direction I like. This can go faster if you can do it all in your head, but I find my mind wanders off, which is why I type to force my brain to stay on mission. If you see me logging a daily plot witter word count in my twitter updates, that’s what I’m talking about.
I’m rounding up the next batch of tagees, and as soon as I have some volunteers, I will add links here.
* It mostly involved my Mary Sue getting together with a cross between Han Solo and Indiana Jones. But I did take it INCREDIBLY. SERIOUSLY. for quite a long time.
** I’m not sure why. I think I absorbed some ideas about artists having to suffer.