The Cuckoo in the Nest
I really do love getting up at 4.00 am or thereabouts and savouring the purity and peace of the dawn hours. I write so much better at this time of the day. I’ve just had my cup of tea, I’ll write until seven and then go back to bed for an hour or so before getting up and going to work.
Two days of bank holiday freedom has seen the word count for the cuckoo of a book I’ve very unwisely embarked upon soar from around 13.5k to a smidgeon over 27k.
I’ve asked around a bit for people’s opinions and tips on writing in the 1st person present and got a mixed bag of responses. It seems to be a bit like Marmite – people either love it or hate it. It’s either spectacularly good to read, or like wading through treacle.
I’m not making it easy for myself, am I? The plot makes me shiver with excitement. I hope I’m not wasting a good plot on a no-brainer of a novel, structured narratively in a way that hasn’t a hope in hell of ever getting published. I am so enjoying writing the damned thing, though, I really don’t want to burst my own bubble, especially after the disastrous three months I’ve just endured with the dreaded writers’ block and feeling like I write rubbish.
My uncle told me about a premature birth at the beginning of the 20th century and I was captivated. I thought to myself that if I was captivated by the story, then other people would be too and I resolved to write about it one day. Then I remembered that, in November last year, I overheard an interesting snippet of conversation behind me in the queue for lunch in the Natural History museum about someone researching a family tree that wasn’t their own.
I got the idea for the new novel from these two five-minute conversations. The conversations then dove-tailed (ha ha!) quite nicely into an abandoned novel I’d got bored with. Voila! ‘The White Cuckoo’ was born and now it’s growing so quickly, and needing so much energy, that it’s squeezing everything else out of my life until it’s finished.
Target date for completion of first draft, I hear you ask whilst scratching your chins pensively? End of May. Yes, really. I need to do it. I can only meet this target if my family help me, though.
Emily – stop rolling your eyeballs upwards: I need you to sit, quietly nursing Sophie, and listen to me reading out loud. Labradors – likewise. Rob – sorry in advance about the housework: you’ll need some new rubber gloves and a pinny. Tatie Katie – feel free to log-in whenever you like and tell me when you get bored with the story. Lee – likewise but from a male point of view. Garry and Nicky – coffee duty and amused tolerance/indifference is all that is required of you, but any (constructive) comments will be gratefully received. Tyler – when Granny is busy writing you really must remind her that, although you are sitting quietly pretending to play with your Nintendo DS, you are really watching Power Rangers on Jetix. You mustn’t wait until 55 minutes after it’s started to tell her that it’s on.
(NB: Tyler is not allowed to watch Power Rangers – his mummy and daddy have banned it.)
The only thing that will stop me now is seeing a pig flying past my window in the form of a publisher for the trilogy.
Our downstairs toilet broke last week. It would not flush. After many mutterings of frustration at having to actually climb stairs to spend a quick penny, hubby investigated. It needed a new syphon, apparently. New syphon = £12.5o. I took the broken syphon to bits, being curious like I am, and it was just a piece of thick plastic that had gone. After telephone calls and visits to various DIY places and Plumbing Centres it was ascertained that said thick piece of plastic was not a spare part and new syphon was essential if flushings were to be restored. So I removed the plastic with the bread knife (no not really – I’m not that mucky), found a piece of similar thickness and cut a new one out with my dressmaking scissors. Hubby most impressed! Reassembled it works perfectly.
Now … how about a little change of career ….