I won’t make any comment on the size of the gap between this post and the last. But rather than archive this old blog I decided to resurrect it as I embark on writing the fifth and final book in the Stonewylde series. This blog will hopefully be something to focus me each day before I start writing. I do apologise to the people who signed up to follow my blog and were then left dangling for almost eighteen months. I shall try to amaze you with the regularity of my entries over the next few months.

It’s January 3rd. My deadline with Gollancz for the first draft of the book is the end of March. I haven’t actually counted the days (anybody care to do it please?) but it’s not a huge amount of time for writing a whole book. I need to get cracking. There again – I wrote the first draft for what turned out to be the first three books in the series in little more than four months – and that was whilst working full time as a teacher.

Now I have the luxury of uncontested time and energy each day instead of a few measly hours after work when I’m tired. And I also now have a room of my own! The first four books were written in my little terraced house in Dorset. My eldest son was at University in Bristol, but my other two teenage boys were living at home, the youngest still at school. We had seven cats and one open-plan living room. I wrote the books sitting on the sofa using my school laptop, whilst the boys played noisy games on the PC behind me and had Kerrang!! blasting out of the TV in front of me. Next door neighbours on either side thundered up and down their stairs. There was no privacy and no personal space. Cats regularly jumped on me and boys regularly wanted food and mothering, whilst the dust and washing piled up all around us. I ignored everything and just wrote and wrote …

I can’t post the picture I’d planned to accompany this first blog entry because of “technical hitches”. I won’t moan but grrrrrr – life was simpler when it was just me, my basic digital camera and my basic laptop. I’m now married to a man who works with computers and really, that only makes this technology stuff worse. Nothing works for me, I can’t mess around with things in case I really mess it all up and I feel completely useless. So this is a bald and picture-less entry I’m afraid. Tomorrow when Mr B has waved his magic wand there’ll be a photo of my inspiring purple things in my own room. And I also may be able then to update the pictures of my old, self-published versions of Stonewylde into the glitzy new Gollancz versions and add the fourth book. Perhaps though I’ll leave the photo of me looking younger and more glamorous than I do today!

Yesterday I read “A Room of One’s Own” by Virginia Woolf. I’ll explain the synchronicity of this tomorrow as I must keep these blog entries reasonably short and sweet and not ramble into displacement activity that keeps me from what I really must do. Jan 3rd to Mar 31st – HELP!!!


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