The Next Next

It was a beautiful early morning yesterday:

[5:45 AM yesterday. Hertfordshire, England. Photo by me.]

During the day, I put a birthday present to use:

[A birthday present mug, now doing its job. Photo by me, 2018.]

As I’ve shared previously, I usually listen to music as I write. Here are some of yesterday’s songs:

I find that complete silence as I write is a distraction in itself. We also live on a busy road, so music masks much of the street noise. That noise is not just vehicles. Even passersbys talking can be heard, and inadvertently overhearing loud conversations – “Eh, mate, move your car, will ya!” – is distracting at times.

Writing a book that is not technically a sequel, but which borrows heavily on the preceeding book, still requires you, as a writer, to remember your own writing. And there are those times…

…you may yourself FORGET what YOU wrote.

There is little more embarrassing than continuity or “factual” errors. Yesterday, I realized I could not remember if I’d written something or not. I realized I had better search for it and double check.

As a writer, one tends to think ahead too. I find now that I am getting on with the new book, appearing in the back of my mind is what happens after it. Having seen my father recently, and rapidly approaching what has been the most terrible month of my entire life so far – October – I find I’m thinking a lot again about my mother and my uncle, both of whom as you probably know I fictionalized in my first three novels:

[Excerpt from Passports. On Kindle for iPad/iPhone. Click to expand.]

Mostly now I try to think about the happy times and about how they had been so important to my writing. I wouldn’t be doing this if it weren’t for them – my uncle in particular. So perhaps there will be a fourth – and last – book in that series to follow Distances.

If you have read Distances, you know it ended in a way that could have been a conclusion to the entire three-volume saga, or the story could have continued; and I framed it that way deliberately, planning then perhaps to write another volume. Fortunately I’d also written nearly all of Distances before that October 2015, and I changed none of it pre-publication in December to reflect their deaths. Although this time it would be mentally different in I would be fictionalizing them back then knowing they are gone, it may be time to leave the 1700s-1800s and return to the more “modern times” of the later-1990s for the next next novel.

Relatedly, another song from yesterday:

Music evokes much in each of us as individuals. A song may mean nothing in particular to one person, but a lot more to another. For example, whenever I hear that Steve Winwood 1980s hit, “ValΓ©rie” fictionalized in the books pops to my mind too.

Have a good weekend, wherever you are. πŸ™‚