Tag Archives: Anxiety

The final Act, and the temptation to flee

Writing is like a salsa; for as many steps forward you make, there are as many back, but every once in a while you get to do a spin or a flourish, and those stay with you. They’re the good bits.So it is with me; I bear good news, with bad news, but my catalogue of narrative pirouettes thankfully continues to grow.

The good news? I’ve reached the final act of my novel, Citadel. It’s taken a long time to get to this point, a lot of forward motion, but with almost as much backtracking. Aside from a manuscript of around 105,000 words, I have documents of cut scenes and entire plot lines that amount to 80,000 words. That is a staggering amount of editing. And it sounds like a colossal waste of time, right? Still: FINAL ACT people. That is good news.

The bad news is I’m finding it difficult to wrap it up. I’ve escalated the peril to such a degree, all seems lost, as it should by the end of Act 4. But closing it out and reaching a neat conclusion is proving a challenge.

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Wedding jitters

I’m getting married this weekend. I KNOW, RIGHT?

I won’t lie – I’m a bit nervous. Don’t mistake that for cold feet – I’m not having doubts, that’s a different thing altogether. I’m just nervous.

It’s a strange thing to be nervous about, though, considering the occasion. We’re surrounding ourselves with our loved ones, friends and family who have seen us evolve over 30 years and know us better than perhaps we know ourselves.

Then we’re taking those 130 people and putting them in a fabulous medieval barn in Dorset, where they’ll see us married, before being fed food and copious amounts of booze – and asked nothing of, but to dance like pillocks for six hours.

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Dining Out – Flash Fiction

My heart flitters, as though a moth flutters inside. Christ, was that a heart attack? Need to breathe – stay calm. Was that normal? I feel fine, but that wasn’t normal – was it normal?

Can’t eat. Can’t hold my fork! Just breathe through your nose.

Apologise to Sarah.

Well, go on! Do it!

“I’m…”

Jesus, you sound like you’re having a stroke! Stop scaring her! Pull yourself together – keep breathing!

Fingers are clamping up – body’s tingling. Pins and needles all over. My mind’s a tornado. Got to keep calm.

I’m fine.

“James? Are you ok?”

I’m losing it – I’m losing it.