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Today was an amazing writing day - I got through about 7000 words, and so am now only about a day behind.

Whether they are any good remains to be seen, of course, but I didn't feel I was lowering my standards any, and there was quite a bit I deleted as not good enough.

I think when it comes to editing, I'm going to have to take some of the booze out. Many of my characters are a bit repressed, so when I want them to say anything to one another I have to get them drunk. And other nefarious types in the story are also out to get them drunk, so what with one thing and another, they've been rolling through the last few chapters three sheets to the wind.

I'm fairly certain you're not supposed to do that in young adult books.


And I had a hell of a time getting Tom and Sush to speak to one another today. They each had to reveal a secret, and no matter how much I made them drink, they just kept clamming up.

We got as far as:

Sush poured himself some more wine, and was suddenly serious. “Can I talk to you, Tom? I don’t have anyone else, except Amita. And she... well, I can’t talk to her about everything.”

And I tried several responses for Tom, but the only one that felt at all right was:

I began to feel very uncomfortable. I never talk about serious things, except with Uncle Jude. It felt wrong. Indecent even.
“Sorry,” he said. “I shouldn’t have asked.”


...and we were back to square one.

I got it out of them in the end though. Now I just need to round off the scene. Sush is currently slumped on the table weeping, and Tom is hovering around feeling awkward because she can't cope with other peoples' emotion, but thinks it would be rude just to go to bed.

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Catriona Mackay

November 2012

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