As you can see, the folks at Facebook seem super interested in what I've been up to, so I thought I'd give Zuckerberg (and everyone else) a bit of an update.
The new book is coming along well. I'm probably about 85% through the first draft and am happy with how it's coming together. I've tried to plan this novel more than I did with DITD (is it too soon to start abbreviating The Devil's in the Detail?!), but I've found that when it comes to actually sit down and write, I veer away from the plan and go where I think the characters want to go. I've lived with these characters now for almost 12 months, and my understanding of what drives them and motivates them has changed a lot. Some of them have changed occupations, upbringings and even genders! This evolution of the story reminds me of a quote from one of my favourite writers, Paulo Coelho, who compares writing to setting off toward an island in a row boat and the more you row the more you realise you are rowing toward an entirely different island (If you've got a couple of minutes, check out the full quote here).
So with the draft nearing completion, my mind has started drifting to other parts of the novel - it's title (I think I've decided on one, but will wait for guidance from my editors), the cover and the book's marketing. Should be some exciting times ahead!
I had hoped the novel would be ready for Christmas, but the book is much longer than the first and after 12 months of writing, I'd hate to rush it to meet some arbitrary deadline that I'd given myself. That said, I do hope the draft will be completed over the Christmas break when I have a little more time. So if you'd planned on stuffing people's Christmas stocking with book 2 this year, I apologise. Might I suggest you opt for The Devil's in the Detail? As online sales don't allow for a personal message and autograph of the author, if you contact me I'm happy to write a personal message to you, scan it and e-mail it to you - all ready to be slipped inside the cover. Just let me know who to make it out to.
I often get asked how DITD is faring (that acronym really isn't going to stick is it?). I must admit my energies have been primarily focussed on writing at the moment, but every now and again I get a lovely e-mail, comment or tweet telling me that they enjoyed the book. The other day, the novel featured in a blog of an actual London cab driver who I'd been in contact with for his thoughts. This lead to an e-mail from a black cab enthusiast in Germany. Oh Internet, how you do surprise me.
So that's about it from me. I'm off to Nepal for some trekking at the end of the week which will be a welcome break. The last time I did a trek it was through Spain and inspired my current novel, so who knows - book 3 might be in the Himalayas!
Hopefully this update will placate our friends at Facebook and I'll stop getting reminders to post updates! I hope everyone is well and I'll touch in after I return from Nepal.