We are half way through the year already. It has been six months since my book Heading North was published. I am its proud parent, but now I must put it aside to find its own way in life.
I have written a handful of new poems with the idea of a future collection in mind, but that’s for another time.
So, you may ask, what next?
I haven’t been standing still, though my current endeavours are quite diverse.
I am half way through the first draft of a novel, Seasons On The Hill, which is about life on a housing estate in the north of England.For all intents and purposes it is a fictionalised version of the estate that I live on. Although none of the characters are based on real people, some of the things in it did occur. So it is grounded in reality but with the freedom that fiction brings.
I have a short story, entitled Into The Storm, appearing some time this year in the next of the Northlore series of books. At 8,000 words plus it is much longer than my last one (And The Snow Came Down) that appeared in the first anthology, along with the poem Mara, My Love.
This week I took a break from my novel to write another story for possible inclusion in the new anthology. Its birth is quite complicated:
I was travelling on a Manchester bus and got the idea for a short poem, Four-Word Story, which I promptly wrote with the help of ‘Notes’ on my phone. By the time I’d reached my destination I had the idea for a story based upon this poem. I made a few more notes-memory prompts, and the next day wrote the story Saga. Near the end of the tale I referenced the writing of the poem.
I decided to submit both story and poem for consideration in the following way: I changed the first-person name of the character in the story to my own, so that when the poem follows it and my name is given it would appear that it is the fictional character from the story that wrote the poem. I also changed one of the words in the poem so it would better fit the story.
With me so far? Don’t worry, it will all come out in the wash. I don’t know if they will be accepted, but I am quite pleased with the results. There is a satisfaction in giving birth, even if nobody else gets to see me show off my children.
Lastly, I’ve also tried my hand at something new. A guy I know from childhood is in a local band. He plays bass and writes music, and as a frustrated musician I admire him for this. He asked me to pen some lyrics to marry to some music of his, and so I made my first uncertain attempt at songwriting. I gave him Hanging On ‘Til Morning, giving him leave to adapt or reject it. Whether it can be made to fit the riff he has in mind he will discover, for creating music is his gift.
So, something old, something new. We are half way through the year. What will have been born come December?