It was the best Solstice gift ever – an email from my editor confirming acceptance of my third book, Wild Spinning Girls. Protocols & paperwork meant I couldn’t immediately go public. I was able to tell my nearest & dearest which mitigated the frustration a little.
In all honesty, I quite liked having a bookish secret. It’s different from a debut, when you want to Tell Everyone In The Entire Universe Immediately! You can relax a bit. And if you’re fortunate enough to be published by a tiny press, you learn to be patient. Mine – Honno, the Welsh Women’s Press – consistently produces classy books to an exceptionally high standard & takes infinite care with its authors’ words. The book won’t be published until some time next year & that’s okay too. All good things & so forth.
In any case, there’s a great deal to be said for space between books. I’m not sure how I’d fare in a world that required a book (or even two) a year from me. How do people even do that? Okay, some stories write themselves (Snow Sisters did); others are far harder & need nurturing. Wild Spinning Girls is done, but still not finished. There’s more finessing to do & I’m glad. I know I haven’t yet reached the stage where I’m ready to relinquish it, because I know there’s editor-driven magic still waiting to be conjured.
All of that notwithstanding mind – get me! Who knew, back in March 2016, when I first held a copy of Ghostbird, my debut novel, in my hand, I’d do it not once more but twice?
Wild Spinning Girls is another story set in Wales. It has many of the elements of the previous two books, not least an old house. This time, a very remote one… There’s a ghost too & a secret…
It will be down to my reader to decide if a level of familiarity is a good thing.
I’ll be revealing small hints over the next however long it takes; small clues & visual images. My favourite fairytale, The Red Shoes plays a part. If you examine it closely, TRS is both a fascinating & horrible story. Hans Christian Andersen hated his sister Karen so much, he gave the beleaguered heroine of his grisly tale her name. As a child however, training to be a ballet dancer & loving fairytales, it was inevitable this one would fascinate me.
And because I don’t do even numbers, here’s another hint.
Island life is still a thing, never more so than during the past eight weeks. Breaking my leg was a thing too. A massive shout out to everyone who wished me well, not least in the writer/reader community. As for my tribe, the sisters who came to my aid, day after day, you have my gratitude for ever.