The week reviewed

It’s been a week of highs and lows this week…I’ve started writing my latest novel Hell Ship, and as I always do at this stage, I’ve allowed reality to unravel in order to immerse myself in the world of my story.

As a result, two days ago I carelessly got in my car – ignoring all the warning signs, like bitter cold and snow six inches deep on the windscreen – and drove through a blizzard in order to pick my daughter up from school. A few yards from the school gates it dawned on me the car was slithering all over the road, and I parked and abandoned it.  The problem was: I’d been writing a scene set on a desert planet, and I hadn’t made the adjustment to the climactic conditions in what  is generally referred to as ‘the real world.’

Still, the car survived, as did I.

This week Orbit announced that fact I have a new 2 book deal, which entails me having no social life for the next twelve months (no hardship! I had none anyway.)  And I delivered the latest draft screenplay of my Welsh film noir to uber-director Marc Jobst (whose TV movie Sleep With Me was screened on New Year’s Eve to brilliant reviews.) 

I spent half a day at the London Film School where I have a part-time teaching role; the course is led and inspired by Brian Dunnigan, screenwriter and sometime folk singer (!)  It’s a great course, and a great place to teach; we tutors are a small gang of freelance writers, and we relish course team meetings where we can catch up with each other’s lives.

And, in the midst of trying and failing to complete a novel in a week (I’m 2000 words in, which isn’t bad!) I whiled away many happy hours revamping my website and contacting friends and acquaintances for the new SFF Song of the Week feature.

Frustratingly, though, I’ve had no news about the progress of the radio idea I currently have under consideration.  Normally, by this time in the year, I would expect to…HOLD IT! The phone just rang as I was writing this blog. 

And my radio producer Toby Swift has just told me that the idea has in fact been commissioned.  It’s a sequel to my 5 part drama that was broadcast last year – The Art of Deception, a thriller about art and deception. No TX date yet, but I’m delighted to have another chance to revisit these characters, and work again with Toby, and our lead actors David Schofield and Indira Varma.

Also this week, I’ve been getting the hang of Twitter…which I’m finding is a great source of info and insight. And I’ve been browsing various websites, including the always lively Mark Charan Newton site and i09, not to mention the boss site SF Crowsnest, where I read a fabulously detailed piece explaining all the things I failed to understand about the Christmas Dr Who. 

Mainly, though, I’ve been planning a novel, which means mulling, reading, planning, and gradually descending into a kind of madness from which I hope – one day! – to emerge.

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