I realised the other day that I haven’t updated this blog since September and wondered why, only to realise that I spent the whole of October and a good part of November completing my edits for The Missing. There were no nasty surprises in my editor’s comments on the first draft – I agreed with pretty much everything she said – but it still took a while to implement the changes.
Working out the time line of my books post first-draft is always fiddly but a tip I read on Jill Mansell’s Facebook page made my life a whole lot easier. Why hadn’t I thought about printing out calendars and entering the plot points on them before? It makes filling in gaps like ‘it’s been XXX days since my argument with Mark’ so much easier. I also realised that I had a character going to school on a Saturday!
Once I’d completed my edits I put together a proposal for my 4th psychological thriller. It’s an idea I came up with earlier this year after a local news story peaked my interest and I really want to write it. My agent Maddy loved it and said it was the best premise for a novel that I’ve come up so we were both on tenterhooks when it went off to Avon HarperCollins. Thankfully the idea received an enthusiastic thumbs up so I’ll be beginning my research in December (reading non-fiction books mostly). In January I need to arrange some interviews with various subject matter experts and then, in February, I’m off on my first ever ‘research road trip’ which will take me to Ireland. In between I’ll be doing a lot of plotting and planning.
Earlier this month Maddy took me out to The Ritz for afternoon tea to celebrate The Lie becoming a Sunday Times Bestseller back in April (it was tricky finding a time we could both do!). It was such a lovely afternoon. Going for tea at The Ritz has been on my bucket list forever and it was wonderful to share the experience with Maddy.
I received another lovely surprise earlier this week. Avon sent me this to celebrate sales of over 500,000 copies of The Accident and The Lie. It now has pride of place on my study wall.