The editing of Family Honour is underway. I love every aspect of writing apart from the self-promotional aspects and the editing. I have experimented with various methods of editing and almost all lead to aggravation. I think this is because I write in a stream of consciousness style, basically my narrator, Sam, does the writing. Then I come along and try to impose my ideas in the editing and my narrator objects. That might sound strange, but it is true. I write very fast and edit very slow. I would guess that 95% of my manuscripts, if not more, remain as written. Yet that extra 5% of polishing the words can be so vexatious. Maybe writing offers freedom of expression while editing brings the realisation that your words have to make sense. I believe Raymond Chandler said, ‘I write better when I write fast’. And I agree with him. I have also discovered that I edit better when I edit fast and, for me, this is the best method. Fast or slow, the manuscript usually turns out the same.
I am also storyboarding Sins of the Father. Storyboarding is fun because you are getting to know your characters and because you are allowed to make mistakes. I love it when the characters take control of the story and develop it for themselves. When the characters are in control of a chapter I know that it is working well. And when the characters are in control there is no such thing as writers’ block. On the rare occasions I feel stuck, I question the character and the character always comes back with an answer.
Meanwhile, the recording of The Big Chill, the third Sam Smith audio book will start shortly. More news of that next time.