Monday, March 29, 2010

The final stages of the final draft (I hope)

Have just sent off the first 64 pages (out of a predicted 300) in the final draft of Bloodlines. Am hoping to get the rest out in the next day or so and then need to write the ending (which I know all about).

I've worked out that my way of writing is lots and lots of going over it again and again. It's been wonderful (with the short time frame) to have the babes and my good friend Jo to pick over what I've written.

In an ideal world, I would have done this myself. I tell my students that the best writing comes when you put what you've written away for a bit and then come back to it with a fresh and critical eye. The babes and Jo have been that fresh and critical eye for me.

And I also must mention the imput of my agent, Josh, (who has not been afraid to tell me what's wrong with the writing) and my publisher Vicki. Vicki has been great at continually reminding me of the big picture. Of the grand scheme.

I can't believe how much research I've done. Mostly I've been frustrated by my lack of knowledge but I did a bibliography yesterday and I've dipped into 13 history books and visited 18 websites NOT counting Wikipedia (which has been most useful again) nor google earth (which has been a god-send).

My research this time has been: Finding out about the political situation of England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Norway and Normandy; looking at the medical situation of the time; finding out about real people in history: Harold Godwinson,and his wife (Edith), sister (Edith) and brother-in-law, King Edward, Willam of Normandy, his wife, Matilda; learning about the seasons and cropping and fishing; investigating medieval marriage and death and costume.

There's still soooo much I don't know but the story I've created is strong and the themes are universal.

Today I am feeling positive about my book. Tomorrow might be another story.

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