I published Glasdrum, my second novel, on 1 April 2017. It had taken me about two years to write, and my first novel took me three years. Aha, I thought, a pattern of book-writing efficiency. Logically Book 3 would only take me one year.


Maybe I got the pattern wrong. It’s not 3-2-1, it’s 3-2-3.

A few weeks ago I scrapped 50k words of the third book and started again. This was very disheartening, but it had to be done. I had reached the mid-way point of the story and I was bored by it. I’d ended up following a dull plot-line that was too much like real-life, and was getting bogged down in relationship dramas that were of no interest to anyone. There wasn’t enough drama. So I ditched it.

I stopping writing altogether for a while after that, fed up at the thought of nine months of wasted effort. But I didn’t know what to do with myself so I decided to give it another shot.

I’m now 18k words in Book Three, Version Two, and I’m so glad I went back to it. I’m feeling excited by the plotline of this version and although I’m writing it from scratch, a lot of the characterisation and back story from the original 50k words have been useful and have meant I’ve been able to write more quickly than usual.

Little things along the way have been motivating: finding out that I’m stocked in Waterstones in Edinburgh, being reviewed in Lochaber Life magazine, and receiving the odd message on facebook from people who have enjoyed Daughter, Disappeared or Glasdrum – these messages are appreciated so much.

Onwards and upwards!



8 thoughts on “Optimism

  1. HI Fiona,perhaps the down times have to happen to make the productive times more productive. Does that make sense? Whatever,keep up the good work, you have written two excellent books and the third is eagerly looked forward to.best wishes

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That was very brave to take the hit on so much work. I am sitting at 90k on the fourth book in my series and really struggling as I seem to have driven up a blind alley. I don’t think I could contemplate starting again but may have to cut out big swathes and only leave the stuff that makes sense. Problem is I don’t know what does and doesn’t yet…. lol

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Very brave! I don’t write very quickly anyway, but I do know if I really start grinding to a halt, it’s because something’s gone wrong somewhere – I can sit and stare at it for days, or I can get on and perform the necessary surgery and then move forwards. So well done to you for being so decisive!

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s exactly what I was finding, I was sitting for hours and writing hardly anything, and wasn’t feeling any excitement myself for where the story was going. More motivated now – awful things are happening and they’re all having a terrible time – much better! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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