When I am writing, even when I am away from it, my story stays in my head. At night, I switch out the light after spending a little while reading in bed, and drift into sleep mulling over the situations of my various characters. When I wake, before I get up to go back to writing, my thoughts swirl round not only trying to resolve difficulties and eliminate stumbling blocks, but also following my characters in their different situations. In my last novel, Radwinter, I had a scene where Thomas spent a snowy and very cold night outside an old boarded up pub where someone he cared for was living in a squat. I played this scene many times before I actually wrote it, and when I had written it, I continued to go over and over it, ironing out little inconsistencies and adding extra detail if necessary.
I have been so stuck with my latest novel, Magick… I know what the ending is sort of, but how to get there, how to tie up the different knots I just don’t know… and then last night I was researching some old court reports from Cornwall in the 1830’s and 40’s and gradually an idea came upon me. I wrote down the bare bones of it, writing a pretend court report in the style of that time – I hope! Suddenly one of the conundrums of my tale resolved itself! Aha! So that was why the child was an orphan! So that was why there was a Norfolk connection! That was how Australia came into it!
I went to bed feeling energised, I knew I’m in reach of a conclusion and a satisfactory conclusion without too many strange coincidences. I wake up this morning and lay with the remnants of a dream swirling around (involving liquorice allsorts) and as I sipped my cup of tea which my husband had brought me, suddenly those extra pieces of narrative clicked… I’m a little way off completing the first draft, but I am well on my way now!
You can find Radwinter on Amazon: