Updated: May 17, 2019
The new novel is pure hell. For five years I've only edited - writing and rewriting and rearranging and reshaping and reimagining The Book of Witch. Now I'm working on something new and I'm rusty. Not like I just need to stretch a bit rusty but like shot out abandoned Chevy rusty. I come up with every excuse not to write and then battle distraction after distraction. Finally, I sit down to do it. Then slowly, it comes. Bit by tiny bit, the novel rains down out of wherever they come from onto the page. I work three hours for three pages. It's so unlike me I don’t even recognise the person doing the writing. And worse, when I step back and look at what's there I wonder, if there's anything of me really in it. Then I see it. Yes, here and there, in the voices of Sara and Riley I hear the Jersey-girl banter I know. But the moving from place to place - the plotting - that feels like the action of a body possessed. I dislike the whole process, but I know the only cure is to keep going back to it. And to believe, without much in the way of faith. Belief is an ingredient in this recipe and something, somewhere will go hopelessly wrong if it's left out. Belief is the leavening. Or maybe the salt in something sweet. Certainly a part of things. Not to be questioned, but simply done, in exactly the way writers hate to do anything.