To seek out new worlds and new civilizations… oh wait, that’s ‘Star Trek’.
The mission to which I refer is the continuing creation of another story from nothing. Not just any story, though. It needs to be the best it can for both COAST fans and new readers alike. It needs to be realistic. It needs to be immersive. It needs rich enough detail that one can feel oneself in it. It needs engaging characters both old and new, and desperate situations through which the reader can vicariously experience what those characters do.
In terms of the ‘three act structure’, right now I’m pretty much straddling acts one and two. The set-up is complete — multiple revisions notwithstanding. The TDR.12 lads are in the middle of another hellishly tough situation and fighting back. Me? I’m thoroughly enjoying playing in the ‘COASTverse’ again. To be back in my authorial sandbox, watching as my three friends work, fight and play together, is great fun. But—whilst I love this quotation—I can’t afford to simply be the man in the corner of the room with a camera, as Hitchcock famously said. I don’t want to be the author who stated “this **** writes itself” because that would mean that one’s output would indeed be ****.
Whilst, in the last few weeks, work has piled up sufficiently as to force a cessation of writing activities, I don’t see it as time lost. It’s thinking time. As I wait for the inevitable progress bars of gainful toil, I’m still having some great ideas to nuance the new novel — odd little titbits that add a depth of meaning to the narrative. So the time isn’t wasted at all and once this current project is out of the way these fingers that itch to dance across the keyboard, forming the new novel one letter at a time, will be back to work. They’re looking forward to it.
A very wealthy man, someone that I respect (I’m privileged to have two self-made millionaires in my circle of friends) recently said to me that this new story is going to sell like hot cakes because it touches on some very controversial subjects. We will see. He also suggested that I write a factual book about terrorism because it would sell in ridiculous numbers, but I’m not interested. I could do it I suppose; churn out some regurgitated research, sprinkled with a few opinions. I could take the money and run. But that’s not the same is it? And it’s definitely not why I write.
I write because the story is my ongoing mission. :-)
PS: A very happy Tin anniversary to my amazing wife!!