Thursday, 26 January 2012

The Lightning Bolt

I knew in my heart that something wasn’t right. My inner editor was whispering to me. Only I had no idea what the problem was.

So I set off over the cliffs to mull things over.

There’s nothing like a blast of salt spray air on your face, the running tide and the blustering wind to make everything clear.

And as I watched the whitecaps rush in and crash against the rocks it hit me.


Not my main character’s motivation. His motives have always been quite clear, but that of one of my minor characters.

And as I worked out what was driving her, the whole thing fell into place – suddenly the plot had a structure that until now it lacked.

My inner editor can sit back (for now). But my work has just begun - this WIP needs some serious editing.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

After We've Gone

There's something about old discarded farm equipment that fascinates me. It's lying around all over the place - in thickets beside the fields, by old gateways, or in a clump of nettles by the side of the footpath, like this one.

I wonder how long it's been here? It hasn't been moved for a while and it's reddened with rust. The nettles grow around it in a feral, stinging clump that rises in a mound from the sheep nibbled turf.

Maybe, though, it hasn't been here as long as we might think. And I can't help wondering how long it would take, if our civilisation crumbled, for the only remains to be hulks of rusting metal, like this, the purpose of which has been long forgotten.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Your Inner Editor

It is always a good idea to pay attention to what your inner editor is trying to tell you – he knows a lot more than we often give him credit for!

Whenever you’re not 100% sure about something – a scene perhaps, or the way a character reacts in a particular situation – then don’t just leave it. Your inner editor is telling you that there’s something wrong – so fix it now. Otherwise the instant it goes for critique – to an agent/editor – guess what the first thing covered in red ink will be!

The same applies to these moments when you’re reading through your work and you knock up against something that pulls you, just for an instant, out of the story. Again, it’s your inner editor. Listen to him. He’s right. Even if you can’t immediately see what’s wrong, mark that bit in red and come back to it.

We all know that moment when someone points out a flaw in your work and you think to yourself. “Drat – I knew that wasn’t working.”

That’s when you haven’t been listening to your inner editor.

Monday, 2 January 2012

Welcome to the Apocalypse!

A new year - new beginnings and new opportunities. What will it bring I wonder?

Some people think that the world will end. But I prefer to take a more optimistic view. Perhaps it will be a year of change.

I'm not going to make any resolutions this year. I think I'll just blow with the wind and see where I end up.

The idea that took seed a few months ago is taking form. Perhaps that would be a good place to start the year.

Happy 2012 everyone!