Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Hi all,

Well another busy week. The copy edit of Dark Water is away - nice to see it tucked in and put to bed, belt and braces. Very interesting to read through it again, like a proper book. Still find it hard to believe I write them once I see the finished article.

The events are picking up. Was in the great city of Edinburgh last week, very nice crowd - witty and informed. I really enjoy getting chit chat going with the audience - there's nothing worse than listening to a boring author jabbering on about how fascinating they are. Tell them what they want to know and make them laugh in the process and you can only do that if they ask.

They are hoping to ask me back, with Helen Fitzgerald. If you don't know Helen and aren't easily shocked start reading her now. It's the kind of crime fiction that you think you shouldn't laugh at but then do because it's very funny and very well written.

Meanwhile, wrote 6,000 words today. I think that's due to the fact I've tentatively started running again as my lungs have decided to work again - never be Paula Radcliffe - but it's a start. Funny thing about writing - that doing some other meditational activity often really cranks up the word count. The writing goes on in the head - readjusted, edited and rewritten, once back in front of the computer, it's all simply recorded paraphrasing my stable mate Val McDermid (we have the same agent) she said her productivity dropped by one third when she went full time at writing. Thinking time is still thinking time whether you are sitting in a traffic jam, walking the dog, or staring at the computer screen!

Last week was also Weggie Wednesday - get hold of them on their website! - at the end of last year they asked Helen Fitzgerald and I to do a talk on crime writing but it was more like a comedy routine. There should be some photos of both of us on their website - October the 14th my faithful pa has just told me!! - the photo will have both of us with our mouths open no doubt. Weggie Wednesday is a friendly get together in the pub with like-minded creative types ( I am afraid I have a distrust of the word networking as it has visions for me of used car salesmen arse licking) but the Weggie crowd are really great. Good fun, good topics and speakers who get buzzed if they go on for more than ten minutes. So if you are a Glaswegian check the website and come along and say hello. It is the type of place you can turn up and be made to feel welcome.

So in the next week, the week of the really long synopsis... the long synopsis goes on longer than the bubonic plague and is twice as unpleasant but for writers with triple plot devices, it HAS to be done. There you go, that sounded as if I knew what I was talking about. If I survive the long synopsis, you might hear more next week!

Friday, 5 March 2010


Another busy week, one of those busy weeks that ends up achieving not much.

Meanwhile, I have ordered all my Desmond Bagley books - they are re-issuing them in two novels in one book format. I'm looking forward to revisiting them all.

Duncan Kyle is proving a little more difficult, I'm in the process of sending my serfs round secondhand bookshops with a shopping list.

The fourth novel is coming on a storm. I'm trying to learn a bit of Russian pronunciation - which is OK, then trying to learn some Russian spelling - not so OK.

And in the meantime I'm studying hard for my forensics exam. A good piece of advice I received was to practice writing for three hours in order to sit a three hour written exam. The physical art of writing is becoming a thing of the past now. Most information nowadays is 'typed in', no handwritten copy first and doing a three hour writing stint uninterrupted fairly puts some strain on the writing hand when your not used to it.

Or something....