So, yesterday, at just after 11am, I pressed the ’send’ button that meant the Official Submission Of The Manuscript Of ‘Surrounded By Water’ To The Publisher took place. Oh yes it did. Just over 80,000 words of Throckton adventure is off into the big wide world. (Well, Emma’s office.)
I’m very happy with the rewrite. It made me cry when I read it through, even though I knew what was going to happen… that has to be good, doesn’t it? And, of course, I know it can be better, and I know that my editor will have plenty of suggestions that make me slap my forehead and curse myself for not thinking of them myself. (There’s a reason that this happens. The brain works by making asymmetric patterns. Therefore, once you have arrived at an idea, it’s perfectly logical…. but logic won’t get you there.) I also know that I’m happy to stand up for bits of Throckton if I need to. So, yes, I’m very happy.
And today, I will be beetling off to the post office with the corrected page proofs of Thrive. Alan has been through them for me – I’ve gone a bit word-blind, I’ve looked at the copy so often – and they are looking good. It’s a big moment, because this is pretty much last-chance-saloon – what I send back will be what goes to the printer.
I’m very, very proud of Thrive. Everyone who has read the manuscript has gone a little bit funny about it (in a good way). The curious thing about writing books is that what’s in your head when you start it and what’s in your hand when you finish it don’t necessarily match. And that’s a good thing: ideas need to grow, and breathe, and broaden. But somewhere between conception and completion, Thrive has done something a bit special. I don’t know what, and I don’t think I know how, either. But… well. I shall post it today with a heart full of hopes and a feeling of having done all I can to make this book everything it can be. In September, you can see what you think.
Next, I am working on my new non-fiction – the third Bah! book, but cancer-free this time. (I don’t think I’ll write another cancer book, unless I get another cancer, in which case I will write the most furiously Bah!-like book yet, full of dance steps that leave dents in the floor.) And I have the next Throckton novel – working title, ‘On A Plate’ – on the back brain.
I’ve also got another writerly project that I’m planning to launch in September. More of that anon.
But today, I think I might knit and do a crossword with Alan and bake some bread. Play with Flora. Enjoy not having toothache. Pretend that writers have weekends. Love my life. Feel how lucky I am.