OK, so not so much ‘standing’ as ‘sitting’, but ‘sitting on the brink’ doesn’t quite have the same ring to it, does it?
Yes, I know it’s been a while since I last updated this thing. So long that all the code is infested with spiders and fuzzy with dust, and the spam-posting-onanists have been merry decorating the electronic walls with their stinky urine and half-wit graffiti. Though to be fair, it must be hard to post advert-filled comments one handed. Bruising their knuckles on the underside of their desks… But I digress.
Book Number The Seventh (or Book Number The Eighth if you’re counting Halfhead) is away at the printers, ready for a publication date in early January, and that can only mean one thing: it’s time to write Book Number The Eighth (or Book Number The Ninth if you’re counting Halfhead). And that is the brink upon which I sit. Dangling my legs over the edge, and thinking, ‘Fuck… that’s a long way down.’
That’s right: tomorrow I’m going to start writing Book Number The Eighth (or Ninth) for real. No more sitting about, staring into space, pondering characters and stuff, now the actual work begins. And I don’t mind saying that it’s got me a little bit worried, because the next book is a standalone.
‘What?’ I hear you think, because you haven’t been taking your medication and your thinks are seeping out from your delicious, moist brain. ‘You’re worried because it’s a standalone? I thought you were dead keen to write one of those!’
And you’re right — though that’s no excuse for not taking your meds — I’ve been hankering after writing this particular story for about three years now. So why the worry? Because the last time I strayed off the beaten track and wrote a book about someone other than Logan, set somewhere other than Aberdeen, it got … mixed reviews.
Yes, I’m talking about Halfhead. I did a gig in Linlithgow a couple of weeks ago, and while the event itself went quite well, the topic of Halfhead didn’t. I couldn’t find a single person there who’d read it and liked it. Poor book! What did it ever do to deserve such rancour? Such vitriol? Such … stuff? Other than be not set in Aberdeen, not feature Logan, and be about things set fifty years in the future?
Which I suppose are plenty enough reasons for some people. That said, I get a couple of emails a week from people desperate for me to write a sequel, so not everyone is a member of the Halfhead Depreciation Society. Some people are desperate for me to write a sequel…
But that’s why I’m worrying about the book on the other side of the brink. Not because people want me to write a sequel to Halfhead — that would be silly — because this is going to be a book that doesn’t star Logan. That isn’t set in Aberdeen (though a couple of scenes might be). That isn’t… OK, it’s not set in the future, but still: two out of three.
But it’s a book I want to write. It’s a book I’d like to read. So fuck it. I’m going to step over the brink.