2016 sees the start of my new novel with the provisional title, Father of the House. It’s been brewing for a while, and started as a story based on the reverberations of war down the generations. I’ve since shifted focus but kept the main character, Justin, whose youthful involvement with radical politics comes back to bite him and his family in later life.

This time round I promised myself not to launch in without an outline, however sketchy. My own experience of left activism in the 80s gives me a framework, though Justin was busy rocking the establishment in the early 70s. I now have a cast of characters with name, age and life history; I don’t always know how they will pan out until they appear on the page. I’m excited to be bedding them in and watching them grow. In the first flush of enthusiasm it feels good to ride the wave of making things up as you go along. Then comes the grind of rewriting, editing and brutally deleting.

I have a plot mapped out, but confess I don’t know how it ends. I’ll just have to keep writing to find out.

Edwin’s advice about goal setting, in Jan 6 post, is timely. My goal is to write the first draft over 12 months, allowing for background reading and research. Achievement –  yes – brilliant idea!

Will let you know how it’s going.