.Right, here's the thing. I have written a 5000 word, perfectly competant, setting-the-scene-and-presenting-the-first-dilemma first chapter of An Unconventional Act. But - 1800 words into Chapter Two and knowing exactly where I'm supposed to be going next - I have ground to a halt.
Because... well, all sorts of reasons but principally because there's no humour. And you wouldn't believe how long and how many mugs of tea it took me to work that out.
On the other hand, the other day I wrote a 500 word prologue that starts in the wrong place and would mean so much back-story being brought in it's not true... but it feels right.
So - what do I do?
Never let it be said that the Romantic Novelists' Association are short on initiative. At our meeting last week, the speaker failed to put in an appearance (it turned out later that she had left a message on the chairman's answerphone - unfortunately the chairman was in London a day early attending a lecture on tunnels). Cue the fastest-assembled panel in the history of Question and Answer sessions.
You can read the result here.
.There's a new blog on the block! A number of the writers who are published by Robert Hale Ltd have banded together to produce a miscellany of news, view and reviews. Hale produce beautiful books in a number of genres - contemporary, Western, historical, romance, crime...
As a Hale author (and one of the contributors) myself, it's easy to see why I've added this one to my blogroll.
Sometimes I wonder what goes on at the bottom of the garden. I mean - just look at this!
Parsnip soup, anyone?
.It's out! And I know two of the shortlisted authors personally. My Cambridge mate,Judith Lennox, and fellow Transita author (though this is a Little, Brown book), Linda Gillard.
The full line-up is here.
Gosh, what with that and the Romance prize being awarded too, I might be too nervous to eat my lovely lunch. Ah! Got the solution. I'll loosen up with a tot of champagne first. That'll do the trick.
.It's nice to escape now and again. Yesterday's escape was to the Sugar and Slavery exhibition at the London Docklands Museum for the next book. A couple of the prints really 'spoke' to me - and when the lights went out and the voices started speaking from all around the gallery... Wow. Very effective indeed!
And then it was on to Brick Lane where my RNA friend Jean Fullerton was having her launch party for No Cure For Love. Lovely bookshop, lovely people, very nice wine and food, and Jean sold out in minutes!
It's Shortlist Season!
Today is the turn of the RNA Romance Prize - for novels in which the love affair between the hero and heroine is the primary theme of the book.
The 2009 shortlisted books are:
What's Love Got to Do With It? - Lucy Broadbent (Little Black Dress, Headline)
The Wild Card - Beth Elliott (Robert Hale)
Mistress: Hired for the Billionaire's Pleasure - India Grey (Harlequin Mills & Boon)
Sold to the Highest Bidder - Kate Hardy (Harlequin Mills & Boon)
Saying Yes to the Millionaire - Fiona Harper (Harlequin Mills & Boon)
Promoted to Wife and Mother - Jessica Hart (Harlequin Mills & Boon)
The prize will be awarded at the glittering (I intend to be glittering, even if no one else is) RNA Awards Luncheon at the Royal Garden Hotel in Kensington on February 10th and as most of the contenders are my friends I hope to be cheering madly!