How y'all been? Busy, I hope.
What have I been doing? Well, today I sent my new novel out into the world, to find representation and love. It's called 'Shadow of the Mountain', and it's a contemporary novel about love and faith, about what leads a young man from a small town in Wales to fighting a war in Afghanistan. I'm incredibly proud of it. I spent two years writing it, poured everything I had into it - and then some emotional reserves I didn't know I had besides - and the result is something I hope you, and many other future readers, will want to buy in the not too distant future.
It's hard work, writing a novel. It's not something you can truly do just on weekends, around your other jobs and hobbies and social life. I mean, I know many do - many even have success doing it his way - but you do have to make sacrifices. For two years I've barely been out socialising. I've spent most of my free time bent crooked over a writing pad, putting this feverish dream of a novel that was in my head down onto paper. Okay, sometimes you go out, because you need a break away, for an evening or so, but in that time you won't escape that novel burning inside you. If you're anything like me, you'll spend that outside time cornering some unfortunate friend in the corner of a pub and babbling incessantly about plot twists, character development and the themes of your novel. But when it's all done - when it's out there, letting others read it, and for the first time in months your free of it... that's a great feeling, that rush of freedom bubbling through your veins. You might even look at all those pages, the multiple drafts on your hard drive, the scribbled notes left behind, made on beer mats, and waiters dockets and scrap paper, and think: never again. But you're a writer, this is who you are, and so...
I began writing the next novel yesterday, in the pause between finishing Shadow of the Mountain and sending it out. It's been at the back of my mind for some time now, an idea growing, shaping itself in the subconscious, and now it is a life, ready to be transcribed onto the page. Who knows what she'll be like in two years. I can't wait to find out. Such is the life of a writer. Please don't think me as mad as this blog post has undoubtedly made me sound. If I do happen to meet you out in a pub, I promise not to corner you and burble wildly. Can't promise you won't start, though, because this writing lark: it's infectious.