Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Finding Time to Write

A daily writing stint is possible wherever you are and if you are serious about it that is the only way to go. Even finishing a novel in a month is not impossible, as NaNoWriMo (national novel writing month, if you don’t already know) clearly shows – it has just finished in November 2011 but there is no reason why you should not set yourself the same goal and achieve it on your own.


When I was writing for the erotica market at its peak, I usually produced four novels a year – one for each publisher I was contracted to. Now I take my time, but still aim to write a novel in under three months if I can. Any longer than that and I start to lose the plot – literally. There is an intensity about the early stages of writing a new work that drives you on, and if you lose that first momentum I find it is hard to pick it up again.

Having said that, ‘The Devil Plays Cupid’ was just a synopsis for several years and only now have I got round to writing it. Ideas can lie fallow – no problem,I find. It is characters and plot that need constant attention if they are to flow and be credible.

But a couple of weeks ago my writing schedule was interrupted when I lost two dear companions, one human and one feline. Sometimes writing can act as therapy, allowing you to lose yourself for a few hours in another world of your own creation. It doesn’t have to be a perfect world – just one that is different from your own and, of course, totally under your control.

But in times of great loss or difficulty I find it more difficult, if not impossible, to write. There is a period of adjustment that requires your full attention, letting the shock subside and the truth of the matter take over so that you start to accept what you cannot change. After that, you can get back into writing with new enthusiasm.

And that is what has happened to me now. I’m on a roll again, hoping to finish my latest novel by January. That’s when I start travelling, and I find a journey is a marvellous way to discover new plots and characters. Much of my inspiration has come from a train or plane journey, when I can kick back and let my imagination have free rein. Once or twice an entire plot has come to me, almost in one fell swoop, and that is very exciting.

But first, the Devil has to play Cupid – and how!

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