Well, perhaps not complete ‘radio silence’ but if you follow me on the internet, you *should* see a marked decrease in my activity.
Yes, it’s revision time and I need to cut myself off a bit so that I can dive into the book and let the water close up over my head.
I’ll still be checking my emails and (no doubt) popping onto Twitter, FB and Tumblr every so often, but please don’t be offended if I don’t reply to messages with my usual speed, or if I miss something completely.
I know that (most likely) nobody will even notice that I’m gone but I feel very real anxiety at the thought of being rude or appearing dismissive of people (especially you lovely followers and readers who have shown me so much support).
I had a brilliant talk with my agent earlier this week and I’m so excited about this book. As usual I’ve ‘underwritten’ so I’ve got lots of development and layering to do, but the bones of the story are in good shape which feels brilliant!
Also, re-reading the book after a six-week break was a good experience. I can see more clearly what needs to be removed or improved, but I also read lots of stuff that I thought was (whispers) quite good.
Actually, scrub that. I love this book. I love these characters. It’s an ambitious book and that terrifies me, but if I pull it off, it’ll be the best thing I’ve ever written. There. I said it. Gulp.
The last week or so has been filled with research (for the WIP), working on the synopsis (yuck) and doing my tax return (double yuck), so I haven’t much of interest to report…
Instead, I present to you my new Official Author Photograph (not really):
Yes, it’s not really up to ‘official photo’ standards, but I do think there’s something to be learned… For me to look even half-way natural and relaxed while having my picture taken, give me a barn owl to hold!
As if the leaves turning colour, the ripe brambles in the hedgerows and the ‘Back To School’ adverts weren’t enough of a clue, it’s there on the calendar: Autumn is upon us!
I have a love-hate relationship with the turn of the seasons (excitement coupled with sadness at the evidence of time passing) and autumn makes me especially nostalgic/weepy/odd.
Still, we enjoyed the last day of summer in high style. Yesterday, we headed to the Scottish Owl Centre (prepare for an onslaught of owl photos and facts!) and had (probably) the last picnic of 2014. It was properly warm in the sunshine and, as you see from the snap, the sky was bright blue. Bliss!
I also did exactly ZERO writing. In fact, I didn’t even open the netbook… It’s this new thing I’m trying: Taking proper weekends.
I’ve been fitting in writing and freelance work around motherhood for fourteen years, now, and some of my habits are no longer necessary. In the past I had to work in any available moment, because they were so few and far between. These days, I spend Monday to Friday in my office, almost like a normal job.
As a true writing obsessive, I’m also hoping that by taking weekends off, I’ll be more focused and productive on my work days.
I don’t expect to always manage it – when I’m on deadline, for example, or deep in a WIP when I want to write everyday, regardless – but I’ve realised that I’ve got to stop treating every day as a sprint to the finish line.
After all, I want to do this for the rest of my life; I need to pace myself or I’m not going to last the distance.