Monday, April 14, 2008

News from the keyboard.

I've started writing. The new book. I mean actually writing, as opposed to researching and planning, and generally fretting about the damn thing. The first words were scrawled in green ink in a paperblanks notebook in Sable d'Or cafe in Muswell Hill, while I was waiting for my kids to have their back-to-back piano lessons. An hour to kill. One sentence written, and re-written, and re-written and crossed out and abandoned. Then resurrected and reshaped.

Later, at home, other sentences were tried out. Some were modified. Some were ditched. Something like an opening paragraph began to emerge. After that, the second paragraph was easier.

It's a breakthrough. I may carry on.


Anne Brooke said...

Good luck with it, Roger!



Nik's Blog said...

Good news, Mister. Keep at it.

Best writing wishes,


Roger Morris said...

Thanks Anne and Nik. I haven't done any today. The kids are still on hols and it's been a full day with them. We went to the Soane's Museum in the morning, then made Monsieur Bon-Bon's Secret Fooj in the afternoon (recipe in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang).

David Isaak said...

Ah, green ink. Another secret of the trade.

It was gratifying to run across a review of your book in "The Economist", by the way. I recall you had mentioned it, but I came across it while idly browsing, and it was a fun surprise.

Nice review, too--especially for The Economist, where even the goos reviews can say some pretty nasty thing. You emerged not only unscathed, but unattacked.

I'm jealous.

Sarah Hilary said...

Excellent news, Roger! It can be a stumbling block, can't it, that first line. Hopefully the rest will flow now. Have fun with it.

Dr Ian Hocking said...

Hi Roger - Excellent. I'm also, by coincidence, about to start my Peterburg novel. I've pencilled it in for Monday, a deadline that may pass me by with a wooshing sound.

Once more unto the etc.!

Rachael King said...

Yay. Same thing happened to me last week. I mean, I have actually written about 10,000 words, but they are shitty first draft and are, well, shit. I couldn't find the 'voice' of the novel. Then last week, the first sentecne came to me out of the blue, then the next, then the next. Clare (or Rebecca, haven't decided)Summers has arrived. Turns out though that those 10,000 words aren't wasted - they helped me to get to know her so when her voice finally arrived, I knew who she was.

(This one has another collector in it and possibly a murder)

JwBennett said...

Best of luck with the new one Roger!


Roger Morris said...

Ooh, how lovely to come back and discover all these nice comments. I've had the end of the school hols to deal with. Plus I'm now attempting to focus on writing - as opposed to frigging around.

David, the green ink failed me. I decided that the 500 words I wrote with it were wrong. So I have switched to black ink. It seems much more reliable.

Sarah, thanks, though the actual first line I thought I had is now further down the book. So I have a new one: "Mitka looked up." Keep it simple is what I say! You wouldn't think it would take so long, and be so agonising, to find a simple three word sentence.

Dr Ian - it's Monday, it must be St Petersburg. Hope it's going well for you - I've done a bit more work today, and I'm slowly working out how I need to start this thing.

Good luck with yours, Rachael. I like the sound of it already - a collector and a murder!

Thanks JB. I feel like I'm out of practice, but I am trying to focus. I may do less blogging and ww-ing as a consequence.

Thank you everybody!