The Novel Project – Week 19

Okay, yes I’ve missed a few weeks. I have been writing, but I’ve also had competing priorities with the day job and a few other bits and pieces. I think it’s what we call “life”.

So, where am I up to?

I’m done with this book…for now. This morning it went off to my editor for a structural review. Once she gets back to me I’ll do another re-write, but I don’t expect to be picking it back up until May – when I’m back from my holiday in France.

This novel is both the fastest one that I’ve written – I started on November 1 at Nanowrimo – and, at 105,000 words, the longest. At times it felt as though it was writing itself. That’s not to say that it was easy writing – it absolutely was not. There were scenes in this that I had huge emotional difficulty with. I found myself in tears on more than one occasion – not a good look at the Surf Club, let me tell you.

There were also times where I had to put it away for a week or so at a time – when the characters were taking me down a path that at times I didn’t want to go. Most of the time I ended up letting them lead the way.

This book is about a love story, but that’s not all that it’s about. It’s also about loss, second and third chances, and new beginnings. It has grown-up characters and grown-up themes.

When I started this book I wanted to write about some of what happens after the happy ever after, and I also wanted to write about some of the unexpected challenges that face us in middle age – especially regarding age discrimination in the workplace. I’ve done that – to a point – but the single question I started this story with very quickly went out the window. Up until two weeks ago I truly had no idea how it was going to end.

It’s set in both Sydney and New Zealand, so I hope will be a good companion piece to Wish You Were Here. It’s also a story that excited me from the minute that I began writing.

And the title? Well, it won’t be Happy Ever After. At this point I’m undecided. Book No.5 is the current oh so catchy title.

So, what happens now – while I’m waiting for my editor’s notes? I keep writing. I’d decided to delay publishing I Want You Back until I was ready to release the other two books in the series, so that’s what I’ll be doing tomorrow – picking up Tiff’s story again. I was at the 25,000-word mark when I put that one aside at the end of last October.

I also have a freelance astro article to write before I go to France (did I mention that I’m going to France for a holiday?) and business as usual in the day job. I have plenty to be getting on with.

Until next time…

Jo xxx