Finally, after several weeks of furious editing and re-drafting, I have finished writing my second novel, ELIXIR. Or at least, I've finished the very first stage of writing my second novel.
What happens next, for those aspiring authors following this blog, is the beginning of the rest of the hard work. I'm fortunate to have a very hands-on agent, Luigi Bonomi, and he likes to have a read of his client's novels before they are sent on to the publisher in question. This is a sort of safety-buffer, for reasons that any experienced author, published or not, will understand.
No matter how 'good' a writer I may ( or may not ) be, there comes a point where I can no longer see the woods for the trees in a manuscript. I'm not the sort of person who finishes a novel, looks at it and thinks: "Wow, fantastic, that's going to sell millions. I'm a genius." Mostly, I realise that I've gotten to the point where every 'i' is dotted and every 't' is crossed and I can't think of anything else I can do to improve the script. This is where the ever present editing work begins, and Luigi provides that first-glance to ensure that I haven't done anything blatantly stupid, that the story runs well and so on. He'll suggest revisions, flag-up any slow-spots where I've waffled or lost direction in any way, identify character flaws... the list can be endless, but hopefully will come back relatively manageable. Notice I say "will" come back. There's always changes, always something that won't be quite right. When it's one person writing 110,000 words, nobody can get it perfect first time, and when it's going to be on shelves across the English-speaking world and perhaps beyond, 'okay' isn't good enough...
Despite all of this, I'm really excited about ELIXIR. I reckon the story is an equal to that of COVENANT, that the main characters are developing really well and that my chief villain is quite possibly the best I've managed to create yet! There's plenty of action, a great new high-concept scientific core to the story that I hope will get people talking and great locations throughout!
Now for a well earned rest, my first proper break since Christmas. Next week, I'll start planning for book three, EVENT-HORIZON. Can't wait!