Saturday 21 April 2012

And across the line...

So, I'm sitting on the train at Bristol Templemeads, waiting for it to leave. I've opened my laptop out of habit, but this will be the first train journey in almost a year where I've not been writing Book Two.

It’s a strange feeling, coming to the end of such a long endeavour (and yes, I know that there are months of editing ahead, but this is the only definite point you can celebrate in the process, and I intend to enjoy it). I came up to Bristol yesterday and checked into a hotel with the intention of staying until I’d wrapped the first draft. I finished at lunchtime today.

Part of the reason to come up here is because this is where so much of the book is set. Indeed, we’re moving now, and I can see the large grey building where Bristol CID are based – an important location for the story – out of the window. But I also needed to isolate myself from all the distractions of home, and sadly that means that I’m away from my family at a time when I really want to hug people with excitement. Somehow, I don’t think the rather serious-looking woman sitting opposite would appreciate that.

Oddly enough, as I’m writing this, my iPhone has just started playing The Moment I Said It by Imogen Heap – eerily appropriate, as the song has been a sort of mood-board for getting into the head of my principal female character, and my working title for this book came from within the lyrics.

I’m getting such a kick looking out of the windows – we’ve just left Bath and I’d forgotten how beautiful this journey can be. And there are more significant locations coming up shortly, when we pass through Avoncliff and Salisbury – like so much of the book, it seems this blog post is being written “on-location” ;-)

Time to close the laptop, I think.

Sunday 1 April 2012

Back again...

It's been a while, but Book 2 is progressing well and drawing towards a traumatic (and rather bloody) conclusion.

I've spent a few weekends in Bristol, where much of the story is set, freeing myself from the tempting distractions of home, and allowing me to quickly visit the places I am writing about. Sometimes I stay at the Radisson Blu, which overlooks the Watershed area of the harbourside - you can just make out the street where my detective lives from the higher floors - but this weekend it was fully booked so I tried a boutiquey little guesthouse in Clifton and had a very productive couple of days.

The weather was glorious this morning, and my walk into town was really rather cultural - passing Damien Hirst's giant Charity figure, the Banksy window mural, and at least one of those bizarre painted gorillas that you see all over the city - before a spell spent typing in the Arnolfini.

Later, I moved across to my normal haunt upstairs in the Watershed Cafe, and managed to complete two of the linking chapters that have been eluding me recently. By the time I got off the train and walked home, I had yet another section done.

A couple more weekends like this, and the draft should be wrapped. The only problem is all the calories - I now have so many places I like to eat in Bristol, and if I'm not careful, either myself or my detective will need to go on a diet.