Saturday 26 January 2013


Today (Friday) was an interesting day, at least as far as writing goes. My day job required me to travel to a meeting in Exeter, so I knew I’d have plenty of time sitting on trains and I decided it was time to start fleshing out the draft of book three.

The core of this story has been in my head for some time – in fact, I remember the idea of it really seemed to creep out my lovely agent Eve White when I first met her – and I’ve been jotting down notes and fragments of it for the last few months. There have been several research trips to Bristol, figuring out the key locations, and discussions with some wonderfully helpful Police officers to explore procedures.

But today was significant milestone.

When I write, I have the dreadful habit of going directly from notes to (relatively) final text. I agonise and adjust and I subject each paragraph to many whispered readings as I go. While it may entertain my fellow train passengers to watch someone whose lips move as he tests the wording, I’m told that aiming for something as polished as this is an extremely bad idea. “It’ll take you ages to get a first draft,” they say, and I know exactly what they mean. However, it’s also the way that works for me, so “tough”.

In any event, today I set out with several pages of notes and, by the time I got home this evening, I had the first half of a scene that really pleased me. A little bit of book three now exists!

Of course, this was also the day that I received a list of final book two changes from my editor, so I’ll briefly need to pause and work through those, but it doesn’t matter – the board is set and the pieces are moving.