Singing for my supper

First of all, if you’re looking for the Dressing Up (get an outfit described in a book) competition, that was the last post. Click on the link above this one (to the left, I think, but it should be obvious) and you’ll be fine.

OK. For the rest of you, here’s the news.

Six versions of the opening chapters of book 3 and it still wasn’t working. I outlined the problems to my husband (over the washing up, as you do) and he suggested starting again. Which, when he said it out loud, seemed a good idea.

My flash-bang-wallop opening scene was so amazing it was all about the scenery and my poor characters struggled to fill it. I blame my father, who once started a pantomime with the finale, to get the audience in a good mood, and while it may be the ideal approach to adult entertainment, it’s possibly not appropriate for children’s literature. At least, not the way I did it.

After so many goes at bringing my poor girls back into the picture, I abandoned version 6 yesterday morning and went back to the original idea. The thing is, after playing about with the characters and themes so much since October, that idea had become clearer and sharper. 4,000 words later, I was a happy girl.

OK, the word count isn’t exactly where I’d like it to be after so many weeks of writing, but now, for the first time, I feel pretty certain that they’re the right words. My characters are being themselves at last, and reacting to each other, and growing, and I’m starting to want to know what happens next. Phew!

Let’s just hope you don’t see me writing this all over again in another 12 weeks’ time. That would be VERY BAD. But so far, so good.

Meanwhile, I have a speech to write for next week. My publisher is treating me to two meals in one day and that doesn’t happen without a certain amount of work being put in beforehand. Hopefully the stress will counteract the effect of the meals. Breakfast and lunch. My favourites. If only my husband liked his women rotund.

And before that, I’ll be ……. (long drum roll ………)


Not the one on this blog, but the old one with Bliss and Tammy etc. Apparently there were hundreds of entries and some of them were fantastic, so I can’t wait to see. I’m not sure when we’ll be announcing the winner, but trust me, we’re working on it. It’s not all breakfasts and lunches in the publishing business, you know.

Thank goodness. Because my jeans are not happy at the moment, and I think if I eat another pain au chocolat, buttons will start popping. Which is not an impression I particularly want to make.


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