When I published my first book, ‘Farholm’, I had lots of readers asking me if I was going to write a sequel, and even asking me to write a sequel! They had felt so involved in the characters and their situation, that they wanted to find out what happened next in their lives. In Farholm, as well as the plot dealing with missing girls, kidnap and murder, it followed the story of two people who had each had catastrophic difficulties in their lives, and how they came to terms with their problems. By the end of the novel, the murderer had been discovered and the characters said good-bye to each other; I hoped I had given readers a satisfactory ending, but without it being an improbably neat conclusion. I replied that I didn’t want to write a sequel, although I knew what happened next in my characters lives… so maybe I would use their situation and create a new story…
With my other stories, in particular ‘The Stalking of Rosa Czekov’, ‘Loving Judah’, and ‘night vision’, I knew what happened next to ‘my people’ but I was never tempted to actually write a sequel. I felt the novels I had published were complete.
So it was some surprise with ‘Radwinter’ that I found I was writing a sequel… because truly, the story was unfinished. However, I was taken aback to find that what I wrote and published as ‘Magick’, wasn’t just a tying up of loose ends, and answering questions which had been hinted at in the first novel, but that the story had a real life of its own, and stood up as a novel in its own right, not just as a sequel for people who had read ‘Radwinter’. The characters and their situation ‘had legs’, the story ‘ran’ and when I published I had lots of positive comments from people who hadn’t read the first story. So… I really thought that this time I had finished.
As usual, when I’ve finished writing a book, the characters lives continue in my head, and in this case I began to chart what happened next by actually writing it down. I didn’t intend to write a trilogy… but that is what happened, and a month ago I published ‘Raddy and Syl’.
So now surely I am finished? ‘Radwinter’ told the story of a man’s search for his family history, ‘Magick’ recounted his investigations into his maternal family line, and ‘Raddy and Syl’ had him exploring how the people who brought him up, the eponymous Raddy and Sylvia had such catastrophic lives which had impacted so heavily on him and his brothers.
So that’s it. All the questions are answered, all the puzzles solved… really, that is the end… there are no more mysteries to be revealed… or are there?