Tuesday, 1 March 2011

On finishing...

…a book that is. Not reading the last page and wondering what to pick up next, but typing the equivalent of FIN at the end of whichever draft is the one you finally decide has to be the last.

It is a bitter-sweet experience. Especially after reading the bloody thing for the umpteenth time through various drafts and proofs (in which you still find typos, right up to the moment they have to pry the typescript out of your fevered hand). There is enormous relief that the task is done, that three years (in this case) of living with a character through situations, of their resigned stare when you put them through yet more horrors, is finished. That for better or worse it’s all gone to the printer. You can get your life back.

So you think.

Because the moment is gone, the sweats start. Cold Turkey (although being vegetarian, I’m not sure Cold Quorn has the same ring about it). You have no writing to fret over, dream about, wake up in the middle of the night and scribble about, worry at as you do the shopping. You have handed your tenderly nurtured child over to a harsh world where people have the choice to fork over hard cash for your masterpiece or for that heavily marketed, half-price, humungous bar of chocolate. And having foregone the joys of chocolate, said folk now have access to all sorts of online media where they can make or break you and the novel into which you have poured your soul.

All those worries last until the fidgets begin. You’ve cleaned away three years worth of dust in the study, mended the leaky tap in the bathroom, and reacquainted yourself with whatever members of your family still recognise the shambling wreck that has emerged from the back room. You’ve played games on the computer until your right hand has seized up (make of that what you will). You’ve watched all those box sets (and The Prisoner really is the bees’ knees – the original, that is). You’ve pretended there isn’t a notebook full of ideas. You’ve tried.

But just when you weren’t looking, you find a pencil in your hand and a few words on a piece of paper; you find a new file opened on the computer; you find yourself sorting out a new set of music to play as the soundtrack to the movie in your head.

All of which mad ramblings are to announce:

Thin Reflections has gone to the printer and will be available soon (watch this space for details).

And I will soon be starting work on something new (as well as getting some of my back catalogue into print).

3 comments:

Kat said...

Yay! Well done for finishing! :)

Please do let us know when, and where, it will be available, as I can't wait to read the whole thing.

Graeme K Talboys said...

Well, the official publication day is today (Charlie's birthday), but it will be a couple of weeks before it appears for sale. Amazon and Blackwells already have it listed. Other online retailers will follow suit. There will also be a website and for a limited time, I'll be selling signed copies. More details on that and everything else will be on this site as soon as I know what they are.

Kat said...

Awwww, thanks for letting me know Graeme :)
I so enjoyed reading the section of your work in progress when you sent it to me, so it will be great to read the whole thing - and in a lovely, new book!

I definitely would like to book a signed copy, if that's possible, Graeme? {grin}

Best of luck with it, and I hope it sells really well :)