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Returning to Rosecraddick

I was planning to write about how autumn is teasing us with leaf confetti and breathing a little chill into dew drenched mornings where hedges are strung with spiders’ webs and the horses’ breath rises like smoke, but as I sit at my laptop the summer has decided to enjoy a last hurrah and I’m actually typing this from beneath a sunshade! The horses are wearing fly hats, the chickens are hiding in the shade and yesterday our nearest beach was absolutely packed. I even went in the sea for a paddle and had to wear sunscreen! It feels as though we are being offered a final golden glimpse of what August was supposed to be about before the misty mornings and darker nights arrive for good and we’re pulling on thick sweaters and boots once more while the sandals and shorts sulk at the back of the wardrobe!

I absolutely love this time of year and as I write I’m inspired by the changing colours around me and the wealth of textures from the buzz cut of stubble to corduroy plough. I like to have a notebook with me as I walk about to jot down ideas or snatches of inspiration which I can then draw upon later for my novels. Do you write this way, pulling on your boots and setting off into the world to glean ideas? I’d love to know because it must be different for everyone. For me, it’s natural to be drawn to the rhythm of the turning seasons and to write about them and there’s definitely a sense of the autumnal in the books I write at this time of year - THE LETTER or THE PROMISE for example. This is probably why I am tuning into the world of Rosecraddick once again for my next book and as the morning mist hangs over the river valley and watery sunlight splashes over the fields, I’m finding myself slipping back in time once more to the 1900s.

Returning to the world of Rosecraddick requires a fair amount of preparation because I need to re-familiarise myself with the locations, characters and timelines of all the books. I also need to be super careful I don’t give anything away or include spoilers. At the moment I am plotting the new book and tracing a storyline which weaves with that of the other novels. It’s a challenge! I am keeping a detailed file now and referring to it frequently.

I truly believe that writing is like the gym – the more you go the more you want to go. Probably not my best analogy as I am not really a gym bunny but writing muscles - if unexercised - also wither so I try to write something every day, be it a piece of description, a poem (which no one will EVER see because my poems are dreadful!) or even a post for my Facebook Group. I also like to write short stories. Last week, deep in the world of THE LETTER, I decided to write a short story set in that world called THE PEW. It has been a challenge because I don’t want to give the novel’s plot away but hopefully I have pulled it off. Future stories about characters readers are familiar with will come with spoiler alerts for those yet to read the book! It was included with my last newsletter - sign up if you want to read it.

I'm enjoying working on short stories too and I'm currently writing one which is going to be a springboard for my new book. It's so exciting to be exploring a new world and meeting new characters. That's one of the best things about being an author.

Until next time!


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