Monday, October 25, 2010

Still Working Away in the Heat of India

I’m still here in Chennai, India, and I’m still beavering away on book two in the ‘Juvie’ series. I’m probably about a week or two away from the first full typescript. This isn’t the first draft as it contains lots of mistakes, ideas, concepts and notes that need to be fully explored. Only when I start a rewrite of the typescript will I get anywhere close to a full first draft, which all going well should be just before Christmas.

Already ‘Stigma’, as book two is called, has changed focus once, replaced the main character and introduced new concepts into the second half of the book that need to be incorporated back into the first half.
Apart from the writing I’ve been catching up on all that reading I’ve been promising myself. This includes:
The Fry Chronicles: Lovey, national treasure, voice of the establishment. Stephen Fry is all of the above and so much more. I read his technical reviews, his regular tweets, his books and watch his shows. I remember him from the early days of stand-up (which this autobiography covers) to his more recent sell out nights at the Royal Albert Hall (where I finally got to see him, live). He writes better than anyone I know when it comes to ‘passing on a story,’ and whilst sometimes he can be just a bit too ‘lovey’ in this book, it's still worth reading.
Kraken: Mieville is one of my favourites and I was looking forward to this book which has been reviewed as a tour de force and ‘fun’ work after the serious and hidden depths of ‘The City & The City.’ It is indeed lighter, but I found it slowed down by Mieville’s own use of language. I often found myself rereading action passages to understand what was happening, plus I had to reach for the dictionary twice. This worked well in his other books, but here it slows the pace slightly. Very much like a wordy ‘Neverwhere.’
To Say Nothing of the Dog: A time travel comedy that takes it cues from Jerome K. Jerome. Winner of both the Hugo and Locus, this is a slow building, light novel that pitch perfectly picks up on the language and mores of the 1890s. If anything it made me want to read some of JKJ’s work.
Now back to writing.

Read this week:
The Fry Chronicles by Stephen Fry
Kraken by China Mieville
To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis

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