Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Busy, busy, busy

Ah to be free of illness again.  At last, I seem to be back to normal.  No more cough, no more allergic reaction to penicillin.  For those following my twitter account (@jgwritesnovels) I had an allergic reaction to said medicine on Friday; woke up with red marks all over my body, looking very much like I had chicken poxes.  It scared the hell out of me as you might imagine.

Fortunately, the doctor assured me that it was just an allergic reaction and I suffered no other ill effects.  A note has been put on my medical file and the marks have now faded thankfully.

Taking advantage of my back-to-normal status, I’ve been busy.

First up, on Monday past I attended a crime writer’s seminar hosted by the fantastic No Alibi’s bookstore, held in Belfast Museum.  Attending were 3 crime writers.  From Sweden, Jan Arnald (pen name Arne Dahl).  From Finland Antti Tuomainen and from Northern Ireland Stuart Neville.  Each of them read extracts from their latest books and also chatted about work, as well as answering a few questions from the audience (and it was a big audience!).  I was very well impressed and will admit to being a little star struck when I approached Jan to get my newly purchased copy of ‘the blinded man’ autographed (a police procedural set in Sweden.  Am reading it now, very, very good!).  Sadly I’d only money for one of the books so couldn’t get Stuart Neville’s excellent Rat Lines (about Nazis harboured in the irish state after World War 2) or Antti’s ‘The Healer’ (set in a near-future dystopian world).  But I shall prehapes purchase both in the future.  The extracts were very good so think I will definitely give them both a go.

Enthused, I have been working hard on book 2 all week and have written a lot.  Word count is up to 36’000 now and continuing to grow.  In particular, a lot of Act 1 and Act 2 A (to use recently learned screen writing lingo) is done.  I now need to finish things off with a good Act 2 B and Act 3 (climax!).

I have also had a lot of little ideas for short stories and subsequent books in the series.  I won’t say too much, but survice to say that right now I have at least 10 direct sequel ideas (many of which already have scenes and characters mapped out and one is pretty much a whole book ready to go, just not yet!), 3 spin off ideas (same universe as the current novel but different characters and situations, maybe even different writing styles too) and 9 other novel ideas (again ranging from one sentence possibilities to a lot of scenes, characters and dialogue already written).  So I definitely have variety to keep me interested in writing.

I also completed the most recent short story challenge between myself, K and Matt.  That of a poetry challenge, the subject being ‘cats’.  Now, when I say completed I mean that I’ve done the challenge; doesn’t mean I did it well.  The poem isn’t my best work, indeed I think it’s too short and the ending sucks.  However, in my defense, it’s the first time I’ve written poetry since primary school (we didn’t do any in high school as far as I can remember).  I definitely think I can do better and fully intend too.  In the future when I’m feeling braver I will show you all the cat poem.  You will laugh at least.

For now, instead, I present to you another one of my old short story challenges.  This one was ‘smuggler on a train’ and is quite short.  I hope you like anyways.  Till the next blog update everyone.


* * * * *

One last job

One last job; after this, no more.  No more smuggling, no more running the gauntlet.  He was too well known to the cops and too well known to bloody border patrol with their bloody sniffer dogs; bane of his existence.  This was the last job.

He sat in the train cabin, pretending to read a newspaper.

The other passengers didn't seem to notice him.  There was a young trendy looking girl in the corner busy on her Iphone.  An older man sat beside him, reading the Daily Mail, whilst directly across sat a prim and proper business woman idly reading a book.  No one was paying any attention to anyone else.

“This train is bound for Southport,” intoned the automatic announcement system.  “the next stop is Branston.”

Good, one more stop after that and he was home free.  Then the briefcase full of counterfeit notes sitting between his legs would be dropped off with the courier and hay presto, he was off to a condo in the Mediterranean!

The train came to a halt at Branston station.  Several burly looking men in suits got on board at the nearby train entrance.  They immediately looked toward him and his blood ran cold.

“Mr Anderson.”
The voice came from the trendy looking girl in the corner, her authoritative tone at odds with her appearance.  She wasn't playing with her Iphone anymore.  She was looking right at him too.

“I'm Constable Mckee.” she said, the barest hint of a smile playing across her face.  “I'm afraid you’re under arrest.”

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