Wednesday, April 30, 2008

First draft done and the Porcupine Wife

Sound the trumpets and raise the huzzahs! The first draft of The Bones of Summer is done! There will be general rejoicing and bursts of applause over the land. Well, in my own self-obsessed head, at least. And I did what I thought I’d do – I ditched the ridiculously flabby ending and wrote a much tighter and more realistic one. With which I am hugely pleased. Phew. And I’m starting to get that buzz of excitement at the thought of tackling the no doubt equally huge edit. My, but it’s wonderful to have something complete which I can pull apart, pummel to within an inch of its life and generally tear to shreds before sticking back together again once more. It’s what a writer’s life is all about.

I’m also pleased to see that the article about me in the recent Writers’ News magazine is now online and can be found here. Well, gosh. So much that is positive in one day – how can I cope with the unfamiliarity of it all? Still, it’s not all good news and champagne cocktails – that day in the month is upon me when I am all spikes, edginess and stomping round the flat muttering darkly. So no change there then is Lord H’s comment … Still, proving that he is indeed a Superhero Beyond Measure, Lord H has already taken time out for a two-minute hug, because Hugging Spiky Women and Porcupines is his favourite. Well, it’s good for the menfolk to have a hobby – keeps them occupied. I’ve also taken two of my essential Quiet Life pills, which are helping. Thank the Lord.

Meanwhile, here at the frontline of back-office care, we are much amused by the man outside with the very long pole (steady, people, steady) who is washing the high-up windows of the faculty opposite. My goodness, what a long pole it is indeed. There’s a fun job for sure. And today’s other fun item was Ruth attaching herself to the cactus as she attempted to sort the blinds out. I swear that plant’s brave bids for freedom are becoming legendary. It’s obviously a day for spikiness. In all its forms.

And I’m continuing to weave my way through the updates to the Personal Tutors handbook. Even better, I think I can see where we’re trying to head towards, so it’s making some kind of sense. Gosh now, that’s a novelty. Did someone put something in my tea? Still, I managed to get out at lunchtime, in spite of the rain. Visited the art gallery, which is a riot of colour this week. Some glorious and inspirational paintings indeed. Honestly, I swear it’s true that the perfect combination of colour can rest the eyes and raise the spirits like nothing else can. In fact, here’s a poem about one of the pictures:

Greek Rock: Multicoloured by Judy Williams

Gold and burnt ochre, russet,
orange, brown,
the rocks rear up
to fill canvas and sky

while words, torn strips
of newspaper
carve out dark ruggedness,
the mountain's deep shadow.

Gazing brightens my eye,
makes me dream of summer.

Tonight, I’m hoping to start the updates to the Goldenford website, as our next book is out tomorrow – triple hurrahs! Jacquelynn Luben’s marvellous romantic saga, Tainted Tree, is published on 1 May and is the book to read over the summer. It’ll make you laugh, it’ll make you cry and the utterly perfect ending will leave you going yes. Buy now to avoid disappointment!

Ooh and huge thanks to the lovely Nik Perring for the equally lovely gift of purple tulips which were waiting for me when I got home. They're wonderful! Though Lord H is slightly concerned that he may have to defend my honour - if he can find it, that is!...

Today’s nice things (goodness, more than three …):

1. Finishing the first draft of Bones
2. The Writers’ News article
3. Goldenford book news
4. Poetry
5. The window-cleaner
6. Nik's flowers.

Anne Brooke
Anne's website
Goldenford Publishers


Nik Perring said...

A good day then, hey?

And Lord H has no need to worry; your honour is safe!

Nik :)

Anne Brooke said...

Indeed! But surely that would be a dreadful confession for an Essex Girl to make!



Sarah Hilary said...

Great news! Glad you're on such a roll right now. Long may it last. May is going to be a GREAT month; I feel it in my bones.

Anne Brooke said...

Thanks, Sarah! I'm hoping that at the very least the rain might stop!!!