“Just finished your book. Really enjoyed it. When is the next one coming out?”
Now isn’t that the type of message that brings the sun out on the dullest of days? That and versions of it have been said to me a number times since the launch of ‘The Long & The Short of it’ in November. It’s a wonderful feeling and brought on a sigh of relief as big as the smile that covered my face.
“Phew! people liked it!”
It’s a bit daunting though, sitting in front of a blank page, ready to start the next project. It was my great pleasure to have Martin Malone author of ‘Valley of the Peacock Angel’, launch the book for me in Kildare, two weeks after the Dublin launch.
On the night, he talked about the “weight of expectation” and how at times it can be crushing. When he said it, I didn’t understand how that could be. I was in the full flush of ‘just-published’ euphoria. But I get it now; I understand that weight of expectation. Even though at the moment it’s only coming from me. The gigantic empty white page is a scary beast to behold. The panic set in…
“What if I don’t have anything else to write?
What if I have no stories left?
Maybe that was it… yeah, maybe I’m empty now.
Oh no… I was right… I’m spent, just a husk – a carcass.
I’ve forgotten how to write…
q w e r t y…. q w e r t y…
NO! there’s nothing there!!!”
Once I started I was fine and a degree of normality [coughs] was restored, but there is a lurking doubt that makes me wonder if I will be able to do it again. I am however determined to take Martin’s words on board. I will not allow that weight to crush me.
I have lots of work to do in 2014 and I’m looking forward to it. And my enthusiastic readers will hopefully be patient as I prepare and cook the ingredients for their next taste of my writing 🙂
You can order ‘The Long & The Short of it’ in paperback or for ereader, and rent a digital copy in the fiction section of the Emu Ink website