Flying With the Brakes Off

Posted: March 31, 2012 in Uncategorized

It was a little phrase I used when telling myself something at a New Year’s party. It’ll have been right about when people were asking each other about New Year’s resolutions. Nobody asked me apart from me, and I didn’t have any to make anyway. Alternatively, perhaps it was the only resolution I actually made. But I raised my glass in the Auld Lang Syne toast and said to myself, ‘okay – just get stuff started, send it off and see what happens…’

My plans were not too outlandish. I finally caved in and opened a Twitter account. I thought I’d take on some of my Day Zero plans and see how I got on (though like many of us, I could probably be doing better if you asked me) and thought I’d dust off my longest-serving manuscript and see if anyone was up for it.

And as I wrote in my last update, things are on the move! The wonderful people at Xchyler Publishing have picked up my first full novel and it will be available in the coming months! I will, of course, keep everyone updated there.

Now, if you read my last post, you will probably already know this. So over the coming weeks, I shall both a) force myself into more regular posting and b) give you a bit more background on the novel, as quite expectedly, one of the first questions people have asked is what it’s all about.

This novel is called Misery’s Tear – so named, as I needed one person to point out to me (thanks, Katy!), for the obvious reason of it being the name of the necklace that the story revolves around. There’s more to it than that, but clearly I’d love for people to buy it, so that’ll do for now. However, I’ll give you the official blurb:

As she awakens from a coma, only two memories remain to her: how she got there – a violent, near-fatal attack at a London Underground station, and a conversation with Tally, a long-dead woman. Tally assures her that all of her questions will be answered, as soon as she retrieves a necklace named Misery’s Tear. Not remembering who she is, Tally leaves her one other thing – the name ‘Rose’ – a name which doesn’t fit somehow…

Rose finds herself with wild new powers that affect both the living and the dead. Together with her new friends, Jennifer and Kara, she embarks on a quest to get to the bottom of her own amnesia and discover who she really is. As her story unfolds, it becomes clear that both her fate, and that of Tally, are intertwined. But time is running out as her would-be killer and his even more psychotic mistress wreak havoc around London looking for her…

It’s going to be a debut novel release, though not strictly speaking the first novel I completed. I did *technically* finish one for my M.A. project, and in fact three of these characters debuted in some basic form back then too. It was like those episodes of The Simpsons that used to be on the Tracey Ullman show to say, season 10 or something.

I have done a lot of things in threes on this adventure. I wrote Misery’s Tear in three parts. Counting Rose and her two adventuring companions, that’s another three. And ultimately, what I’ve ended up with is a plan to write a three novel series, each focusing on a different character, though with a continuous central plot. That’s the plan, anyway.

Rose’s story, by nature takes a more paranormal spin than the others will, simply because her powers are entirely linked to her connection between the living and the dead. I can tell you I’ve started a draft of the follow-up, and already it feels very different to this one. But that is, quite literally, another story…

So, this year’s no different to any other in that I don’t have a clue how it’s going to turn out. However, as far as starting with things like this go, I’m just going to enjoy the ride. Who knows? I wasn’t expecting to ever visit Russia in my lifetime, but I made it over last year…

  1. joannavdh says:

    That sounds fab – looking forward to it! How did you find writing for a main character that was female? I’ve never written with a male protagonist – was it easy for you or did you have any difficulties/epiphanies etc?

    • Thanks 🙂 Interesting question. I’ll put a bit more detail up in a later blog when I explain the story’s origins more, but actually, getting to know ‘Rose’ was a lot of fun. My original inspiration for the central protagonist was actually male – and I merged that with a bit-part character idea I had for my coursework project.
      I found two particularly tricky things when I was trying to write this, and mostly they going pointed out to me. The first was trying to get the point of view as I wanted it. First person stuff comes more naturally to me, but I don’t think it would have worked for what I was going for here.
      The second was often with trying to get some of the support characters sounding suitably distinct. Tally’s voice just landed straight away in my head, but some of the others took some real thinking about.
      Hopefully that answers your question a little; as I say, I will revisit this in a future post!

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