Sandra and Luke have sold their respective houses and, as they stand waiting, the removals van arrives. They prepare to leave Codmanton behind. All that remains is to drop off the house keys at the estate agent’s office.
The story is told but, as I’ve been writing, it has become clear that there are gaps that remain to be filled. There are also implausible aspects to the timeline that I began with. In order to correct these there will be a need for substantial rewriting. Spelling and grammar issues are matters that I will leave until later.
Over and above these matters, I have been rethinking the setting of the book. My original idea was to make Codmanton a textile town. In retrospect, this was a mistake. I know next to nothing about that industry or its infrastructure. On the other hand, I grew up in a town where coal, glass, gas and chemical industries dominated the local economy. I remember trolley buses, rationing and smog which were commonplace. I have vivid memories of coal miners in their clogs sounding on cobbles, as human chains of them snaked from their buses towards the pits. I sat by my grandad’s bed where he spent his last years after a pit accident, and I remember how, when I was a primary schoolchild, the father of a friend died following days of smog. I intend to represent some of these real memories in any rewrite.
There is something else that I’d like to do. The other day, after reading someone’s WP blog recommending tips for new writers, I followed one tip immediately, and purchased a copy of Stephen King’s book, “On Writing”. I’m only halfway through but two of his edicts in particular have caught my attention – to spurn adverbs and the use of the passive voice. I had a look at just two chapters today out of interest. I can see already that cases of these edicts will be more difficult than I had imagined – either to track down or to eradicate. I still read sentences without even noticing such faults.
This has been a much longer Blog than I intended but, I hope that you will bear with me in coming days if I spend a lot of time letting you know about not much more than my tedious progress.
Returning to my first paragraph, my headline and the photograph – the image is of the shopfront of the offices of an estate agency close to where I live. I took it with my Pentax-K1 camera using a 24-70 mm f/2.8 lens at 24 mm and f/11. The ISO was 100 and the shutter speed 1/30 seconds. The shot was taken handheld.