I love new work-in-progresses. They sit in my mind, like a promise you'll get back to, taking shape over a few months. I've been dilligently working on older stuff, ready for reviews and edits and now I'm up to date and can play. And so the shiny new thing is taken out and looked at and oohed and ahhed over by me.
I can't say too much about it, mainly because it is so shiny and new and will no doubt change lots as I write it. I got the feel for it on holiday this year, in a forest. It was a beautiful day and the forest around me stretched still. Birds were flying from tree to tree, fat woodies, a little tame robin, a family of ducks waddled past, and I had the lovely magical thought of 'What if...?'
Sadly, a story needs conflict. So the what-if doesn't bode well for Ms Puddleduck and kids. But I just knew the setting had to be used and the sense of that place turned about and changed and made into something new.
I drafted about 20k words in the initial bloom of the idea, and then stopped. Now, three months on, I've got seven pages of planning in front of me, and a killer line to try to get into the first page again. The line that came to me deep in the forest and told me there was a story to be told. Here it is: The forest sounds return, all crackling twigs and birds; people calling out to each other along the holiday-village's pathways. And then the mizzle falls, covering my arms, making my hair stick to my scalp, coating the forest floor. That's where it started: with the shriek of a plane, the yelling of kids, and the singing of birds. Just there.
And now I get to find out what started just there and why. How can you not love being a writer?