I was out for the count by around half past nine last night. As Gail was heading out for a drink with her sister-in-law, after dropping Laura off at her pals for another sleepover, I found myself nodding in and out of sleep with the TV playing in the background. I could hardly keep my eyes open. So I closed them. And I had an awesome sleep.
When I woke this morning I hadn’t heard Gail coming home, so I showered and hard my breakfast then headed into town. I treated myself to some new CDs: Wave of Mutilation by the Pixies, and a double album by Jeff Buckle containing Grace (an album that’s been on my ‘to buy’ list for 9 years), and Mystery White Boy (live). I also got some new books using my Waterstone’s card: Day by AL Kennedy (on the back of seeing her at the Edinburgh Book Festival this week), The Island by Victoria Hislop, and One Good Turn by local crime writer, Kate Atkinson.
Today is my fifth anniversary of being married to Gail. Five. 5. Four plus one. FIVE. 7 – 2. FIVE years ago we were wed to the sound of It Must Be Love by Madness in St Andrew’s Church in Leith on a beautiful summer’s day. We had our photographs taken in the Botanic Gardens, before joining all our friends and family in a wonderful reception in the Apex Hotel Hotel in Edinburgh’s Grassmarket. The backdrop to the meal and speeches was Edinburgh Castle, and the following morning we flew to London, stayed the night in the Paddington Hilton before taking a two week honeymoon in Jamaica. It was one of the best weekends of my life, though I’m still paying the damn thing off!
To celebrate we had a family meal; family, because tomorrow we are using our baby sitting request so we can go out to see a band. The three of us went to International Starters in Leith for a meal, where all the dishes are starters but you can sample a variety from several nations. It’s a good idea, and very filling, but tonight the chef just wasn’t firing on all cylinders. We came home after and relaxed with a drink and watched a film on TV. Sounds drab, but it was just what the doctor ordered and considering tomorrow will be action-packed it suited me fine.
Devon – Yes, Alan Johnston has a book out detailing his experience as a prisoner of the Army of Islam. It’s called Kidnapped (originally enough), and the details are here.
Adam – Thanks a million for all your comments and words of support. I’m glad you’re enjoying reading the blog. I’ve no idea what my typing speed is, though. I know it’s faster than some of the finger bashers that work in my day job, but I’m probably not as fast as you might think. Interestingly enough, I find my typing increases when I get into the “zone”, which is to say that magical point when one is writing a story and you lose consciousness of actually being in a room writing, and become at one with the story. When that happens, writing is never more pleasurable.
Which brings me neatly onto Greener is the Grass. As you can see from the counter below, I’m about 7k into an estimate 30k of the story. What’s different in this piece, is that I’m trying to write it in first person, and not in my normally preferred third.
And it’s just not working.
I stopped writing it in order to complete Hunting Jack, but towards the end of the hiatus on it, I found myself struggling. Thinking about it over the last few days, I can’t see myself ever making it work this way, and in fact when I’ve noted down passages and ideas, they’ve all started coming out in third. So I’ve decided to go back and write it in third. I’ve only ever managed a first person story and it was a short one, and it took me about a good couple of moths to get right and it’s still not published – which could be an indication – or it may not. My aim is still to get it finished by the end of August, as well as getting Slick sent out, then I can concentrate on editing Gatecrash and finishing up my research on my first fully fledged DI Lennox novel.
Coming tomorrow: those long awaited pictures from my trip to Rome in May!
Greener is the Grass (Writing)
PLEASE DONATE – For full details of my Abseil off the Forth Rail Bridge in October for the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, please go here:
I’ll check out Alan’s book.
If the story wants to be told in third person, switch it. Always trust its natural voice.
When something needs to be told in first . . .you’ll know.