Real Life Getting in the Way by Audrey Mac Cready

Writing.ie | Member Blog

After a good rest at Christmas and New Year, things have kicked off again. My younger son and his partner have finally found an apartment they can afford and moved out this month. Consequently, I am taking the opportunity to redecorate their ex-bedroom. This hadn’t been done in decades so necessitated stripping wallpaper (woodchip – remember that?), re-plastering walls, a complete paint job and new carpet. This is happening as we speak so no surprise that I don’t have much attention for writing.

The electricity in the kitchen sat down two days before Christmas. I managed to get an electrician to fix it at short notice, but he discovered some very dodgy wiring and will be back soon to replace it. The sink blocked up on Christmas Day (did I say I had a rest?), which required the attention of a plumber who I need to come back for a couple of other non-urgent repairs. Today, there has been an electrician, a boiler serviceman and three painters here…

All was not lost on the writing front, however. I met a friend from my former writers’ group who very kindly read my latest novel. He gave me oodles of useful commentary, a key question being, ‘Is it a thriller, a romance or a literary novel?’ You’d think I’d have figured that out already! The reality is that it started as a crime story, developed into a love story and ended up touching on some moving events from my own life.

I took part in a webinar on Reedsy this month, on editing. It was given by SJ Watson and one of the most striking facts I learned was that he edited away 60% of his original manuscript in a recent book. In other words, we have to be ruthless. All that stuff we hear about killing our darlings and that writing is re-writing is all true, and takes work.

So, I’m contemplating removing the romance side of my novel and focusing on the darker crime side. Yippee. At least it will make it easier to place on that notional shelf in the bookshop.

Did I say I was planning to start a third novel? Hmm, may have to put that one on pause.

Besides these delights, I’ve been working on my genealogy website http://maccready.eu/ , including two blogs, and the occasional FB post to keep me in the social media world. Must stick a photo on Instagram, too…

My Christmas presents included Laura McKenna‘s ‘Words to Shape My Name’, Evelyn Conway’s ‘Reading Rites’ and ‘Release the Bats’ by DBC Pierre. As if I didn’t have enough to do…

(c) Audrey Mac Cready

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