Final Cut Update

Added on 08 December 2008

In a bit of a down phase with The Final Cut. I started it a few weeks ago, thinking there was a tonne of work to do on the original manuscript and that I’d better get on with it. Didn’t want to be finishing it off at the last minute next summer, in the way that I’ve done twice this year with Juarez and the Long Midnight reprint. And then at some point in the last couple of weeks, I’ve realised that it’s actually in pretty good shape. With the exception, in fact, of the dumb ass plotline involving Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, which has to go, and some tying up with the leftovers of The Haunting of Barney Thomson, there’s not a huge amount to be done with it.

And somehow, subconsciously I’ve just taken my eye off the ball. Instead of cracking on and getting it finished six months in advance, like a normal author, work has slowed dramatically. Not that I’ve been sitting with my feet up watching ethnic Polish tv and drinking beer, or hanging out with international women, drinking vodka and talking about other international women.

I’ve been trying to source distributors for the series in other English language markets, and working on my eleven minute Desolation Row type song for the end of the cd and sitting in a queue to get my hand x-rayed and joining the office choir so that I can subject myself to the abomination that is Away In A Manger AGAIN, and spending many many hours trawling through the internet trying to find someone else out there who has spotted the fact that Miffy, the little Dutch rabbit, is in fact merely a means by which secret messages were passed amongst secret members of a secret society intent on placing the descendants of Jesus on the thrown of a United Europe.

There have been mixed results: I identified various distributors to approach; almost finished The Jigsaw Men, my eleven minute epic; I got my hand x-rayed; and the choir is as a choir does. The only apparent dereliction of time management up to this point is my singular failure to find any further evidence that Miffy is part of a code in some grand conspiracy. It seems so obvious, and yet there doesn’t appear to be anything else out there. Could it be that, despite all the evidence to the contrary, Miffy is just a simple children’s character with no sinister undertones...?

To further distract me this week. More choir practice. Still need to work on the tenth and eleventh minute of the eleven minute song. And at the end of last week I got an e-mail from a literary agent I’d been speaking to a couple of months ago. I sent him Lost in Juarez. It would have been easier if he’d just said no, even easier if he’d said, I love it and I can get you a four gazillion dollar book deal on the back of this: instead he said he liked it, but due to the fact he didn’t like Lake Weston - the lead character - not enough to want to take it on. However, he is interested in hearing about my next book... My next non-Barney Thomson book that is.

I have two ideas: The Strange Case of Solomon Green and Kanchenjunga. I’m not sure if I’m ever going to write either The Strange Case of Solomon Green or Kanchenjunga, but they are both reasonably well developed ideas, and at least I’m not desperately trying to come up with a great book idea off the cuff. So for the next couple of days, rather than cracking on with The Final Cut, I’ll be putting into writing the outlines for these two books and pitching them to an agent and unrealistically hoping that he’s going to say that he can get me a book deal for them on the strength of a few paragraphs.

And if I can’t get him excited about either of those ideas, perhaps I might be able to interest him in The Miffyanic Legacy...