I can see the sunshine from where I sit. It comes slanting down through the apple trees in my garden. I can see it, but can I enjoy it? My days are spent staring at my screen waiting for inspiration to strike. Every now and again I permit myself a quick look over my left shoulder, out through the double doors of my studio and onto the balmy scene beyond.
It’s editing time.
I’ve grown to physically cower at the sight or sound of those words – the endless tweaking of sentences, paragraphs, chapters in the slender hope that the resulting morass of words will suddenly flow forth and make some sense. ‘It has the makings of a good story,’ said my agent, the other day. I think he’d spent most of the last week trying to think of something positive to say about the manuscript I’d given him to read. And, if history repeats itself, there is worse to come. I’ve still not shown my publishing editor this year’s offering. Nor will I until I finished the current round of tweaking. Coward? You betcha.
Incidentally, on another subject altogether, I’ve begun to receive some feedback on The Watermen, included amongst which is a suggestion that a map be attached to the back of the book. I think this is a great idea and hope to be able to include one in the paperback edition of The Watermen and, of course, River of Fire when it appears in April 2011.