Wednesday, July 27, 2011


I'm almost too scared to tell you about the latest developments in my writing. If you've followed my blog for the last six months, or so, you will be well aware that I've put one project away, started a new one, rehashed the new one, battled with distractions and generally been rudderless. But this last week everything has changed - I hope. (see, I'm living up to the ditherer moniker.)

I've always maintained that there is nothing more helpful than putting a distance between yourself and your newly completed work. It needs to marinate and the writer needs to have a chance at objectivity, and I believe the last six months have done that. So I pulled out the manuscript to Blackbird and bingo!

It took me less then a day to realise I needed to chuck out the first 300 pages and make what had morphed into two books, back into one. So I sat down and wrote the new first chapter and amazingly my MC Maddie popped out more formed than she ever had been and my style of writing has changed too. I'm writing in a much closer 3rd person perspective and I think it serves the story well.

Now I'm wading through the manuscript. I spent three years learning to write on this story and I wrote far too much. There are too many 'events' and a few too many characters. So I'm making great use of my literary shears: slicing off unnecessary scenes and splicing together others.

I know some writers would turn their back on the story they 'practiced' their craft on, but this is a story I care about and the characters just won't leave me alone.

I'll keep you informed of my progress. And don't worry, Amelia's Strath Taieri story is tucked away safely, but not forgotten.


  1. Awesome Sue. The story promises to live up to all your dreams for it. I can't wait to read the end result.

    When a story is determined to come to life, it'll be persistent and Maddy has definitely been that!

  2. That's super. I love it when I can go back to a project and make it more special than I thought it was before.

  3. Somehow I missed this. I could never abandon the story I practiced my craft on - it's my baby! Glad you feel the same way, and I admire your determination and optimism. Yes, I can't wait to read the end result, too.