It’s also, coincidentally, the first quiet day I’ve had in the two weeks since the British Fantasy Awards were announced. I’ve spent large chunks of that time talking about myself – which is not my usual setting and, quite frankly, I’m sick of me. This period has been interesting because it’s brought attention that has resulted in an elevated writer profile (or EWP), may or may not translate into increased sales, brought me back into contact with a friend I’m really happy to see again, and also caused some psychopaths from my past to raise their heads and act as though nothing happened and there was no reason for the friendships to break.
But I digress.
So, back at the novel, which means I’ve spent the morning at the dining table, hunched over a mountain of post-it notes, a four page document entitled ‘Stuff you need to follow-up on and thread through the novel’, and a ms that looks a bit like the Rosetta Stone. Rather than having Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, Demotic script and Ancient Greek, it has what can best be described as the Three Ages of Angela’s Writing Brain: the stuff that’s been edited several times and shines, the stuff that’s getting there and is starting to look more attractive, and then there’s the stuff I put in this morning to add layers and back story that have been missing – I like to call this last bit ‘literary rabbit droppings’. Coz, well, it’s brown. It’s brown as brown can be.
But that’s okay. It’s new stuff. New stuff is brain-vomit. New stuff is not going to be brilliant, new stuff needs shaping and crafting and polishing – occasionally deodorising. It’s okay, coz that will happen. It will get there. And the stuff that’s already okay, the stuff that’s been worked over? I don’t hate it – some of it I love, in fact. All of it, I’m proud of when I read it over.
Just keep swimming, just keep swimming.