I haven’t touched the blog for the last couple of weeks, because I’ve been finishing my novel. This is the second book I’ve written in two years, and the sense of achievement is just as great this time as it was before. Aside from the whoops of joy, however, the emotions are totally different.
By the time I finished my first book I didn’t want anything more to do with it. I knew it wasn’t up to scratch, it didn’t do me justice, and I felt faintly embarrassed telling anyone about it. The characters slunk back onto the page, two-dimensional and casting no shadows.
This book is different. My characters race around my head while I sleep, they hold conversations and have lives far beyond what I have written for them. The story consumes me; I find themes I didn’t know were there, metaphors I hadn’t intentionally included. Excitement bubbles within me and I can’t wait to go back to the beginning and start revising, refining, editing…
I’m not sure what will happen now, but this story feels like one worth telling, and I’m prepared to fight its corner in a way I never wanted to with my first book. Instead of feeling tired and spent, after ten months’ work, I feel energised and ready to attack the next phase. It’s exciting, not daunting. I can’t wait.