Book Update

Having failed miserably to get near the book all week due to work commitments, I resolved to resurrect my ‘red pen’ edit this afternoon. Fionnuala and the hatchlings were off to visit my wonderful mother in law, so I had the house to myself. Deciding to sacrifice my weekend long run, I settled down to the grind of poring over every line, sentence and page of the latest draft. Deep joy, I know.

Seven hours and copious amounts of toast and Diet Coke later, I sat in my hoodie and pyjama bottoms, a happier man. I’d managed to cut a swathe through twenty chapters of the book, leaving me nine short of the finish line. My brain is frazzled, I’ve a three day old beard and the thousand yard stare that all aspiring writers are well familiar with. All being well, this time next week I should be finished.

I was more impressed by this, given my mind was already chopped liver, facing a Doomsday deadline next week for delivery of a big report for the powers that be. This necessitated me going into work on Saturday, something I haven’t had to do in a very long time. I loathe giving up my weekends, even for time and a half, but needs must and all that. Ten hours hammering away at a keyboard is not great preparation for an editing frenzy the following day.

The silver lining, as ever, are my wonderful beta readers. I received fantastic feedback from one of them this week. I won’t say who they are, as they are the shy and retiring type, but the words ‘Killed’, ‘Betty’ ‘I’ and ‘How’ feature in their blog name. It was just want I needed, when at a low literary ebb. Encouraging without being gushing and constructive without being soul destroying.

After this final self edit, I’ll be reviewing and tweaking the manuscript in line with my beta feedback. Then it will be forwarded to my editor, Laura, to turn the lumpy, rough diamond into a sparkling jewel. I’ll then launch myself into the lions den of querying agents and pestering publishers. I’m less nervous of this as I was a few weeks ago. If all else fails, I will (self) publish and be damned.

My blogging and running have both suffered this week, due to the pressures of work but, at the end of the day, the job pays the bills so it’s a reluctant priority for me. I’m hopeful that by midweek there will be less pressure coming from that arena, and I’ll be able to focus on more enjoyable pursuits. I’ll be back running tomorrow lunchtime as I need that break from my computer screen in the middle of the day.

Oh….and for those of you that don’t know, the book is titled ‘The Kirkwood Scott Chronicles – Skelly’s Square,’ and is the first part of a YA urban fantasy set in modern day Belfast. Our eponymous hero is a twenty something paper pusher battling a tragic past, spiralling mental health issues and a life going nowhere fast. All that changes when he meets a mysterious homeless girl who may hold the key to vanquishing the imaginary demons in his mind.

There’s just one problem. What if they’re not imaginary? Kirkwood finds himself at the centre of an ancient battle between supernatural forces of good and evil, struggling to save the planet and retain his own sanity in the process. All set against the murky backdrop of Belfast street life. It’s taken me a year to write and I’m very proud of it. I hope you all get to read it one day. Thank you as ever.

Are you writing a book? At what stage of the process are you at?

Who are your favourite Young Adult authors? Apart from me, that is?

Would you read ‘Skelly’s Square?’

40 thoughts on “Book Update

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  1. Yes, I am writing a book but it is still in the research phase. My favorite YA author is Richard Paul Evans. I love the Michael Vey series. I would most certainly read your book. Sounds intriguing!

    Good Luck!
    Tabetha

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  2. Way to go. Congratulations on accomplishing an awesome amount of work in spite of life’s needs. The book really sounds interesting and I’m not a fiction type person. Jerry Jenkins’ Left Behind series hooked me on believable fiction.

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  3. I would absolutely love to read your book. Sounds epic. There is real darkness in this world and the “battle” is also real. We – I – need writers to bring hope, fun, & adventure. To be whisked off to a new far away place (my wife and I found each other’s hearts in Belfast) and taken to another story – sign me up. Best of luck, I will be praying for your (and your families) success.

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  4. Good morning, yes writing a book ever so slowly. Yours sounds interesting! And I am way impressed by your progress. Our son is 14 and an avid reader and writer. Your writing may suit him well. Have a blessed Monday.

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  5. This resonated with me because a few months back, I had a very similar experience : left alone for a weekend, and I just spent pretty much an entire day working on my book, which was sitting dormant before that, for the most part. I got through so much…actually haven’t worked that intensely at home since my studies, so it was awesome. Especially because this is a passion project, and not “work”.

    My last update on the book is here:

    https://dreamlife.wordpress.com/2018/10/10/book-update2/

    And since then, it’s now gone to beta readers for a few months. I’m hoping to resume in the new year, once life settles down.

    Your story sounds very interesting – even though I’m far from your target audience.

    Hope you’ll keep updating us here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too – blogged about my ‘writer’s wee treat’ when the family were away and I could build my own (cheap!) version of a writer’s retreat. Have to make the most of it, doesn’t come around very often! Good luck with the WiP all.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. That’s amazing Stephen and congratulations on your book. I would definitely read the Kirkwood Scott Chronicles; it sounds great and very interesting.

    On the other hand, I am currently writing a Christian fiction novel set in 21st century Ethiopia. My novel is currently in the very beginning stages at the moment; with me trying to write up scenes for the story and how I want my two MC’s to progress over the course of the novel. However, I’m not trying to force the scenes to happen.

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  7. You’re going to make me regret turning down beta readership till the day I die, aren’t you?

    I just might go somewhere else for a while. I hear there are ginger crisps at your favorite’s place…

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