I can’t believe that the release of my novel, Baby up the Chimney, is only a week away! It’s taken ten years, since I first wrote a short story with the same name, to get this book onto the shelves of Amazon, Kobo, Apple, Barnes & Noble and lots of other stores. I don’t mean that I’ve been writing the same book incessantly, squirrelled away like a little hermit (and I say ‘little’ because I just about scrape five feet tall on a good day!). No, the original version of this book was originally written a number of years ago, although it has changed a lot since that initial draft.
I almost couldn’t explain it, even to myself, but this book became immensely personal in many ways. I obsessed over it for years, nothing I wrote made me feel like it was good enough, and I put it down and restarted it half a dozen times before biting the bullet the year, ripping it apart and rebuilding it, chapter by chapter. And then it dawned on me what the problem had been: it had begun to incorporate all sorts of things that meant a great deal to me, or I had experienced in some way, big and small, even though I fictionalised each one and placed them in the hands of completely fictional characters. And if you read the book, you’ll probably be very glad that they are fictional.[Read more…] about Writing what you know (Part 2)