I’ve now finished the first draft of my next book. Provisional title: On the Other Side of the Sky.
Current length: 103,000 words. That’s a lot of words.
Date started: 20 August 2020 (I have written and published a couple of shorter books in the meantime)
Setting: 18th century Europe
Protagonist: A girl with a strange parentage
Antagonist: Her father – who is from the other side of the sky
Other characters: Some members of the Lunar Society including England’s greatest doctor, Erasmus Darwin, assorted alchemists, mesmerists, mountebanks, rabbis, and German Landgraves. A sprinkling of the English aristocracy and some revolutionary sans-culottes.
Supporting cast: Some beings from the other side of the sky, and some Rosicrucian-type Elementals (Sylphs, Gnomes, Undines and Salamanders).
Genre: Historical paranormal. Similar in its way to Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Method of writing: Seat of the pants. Watch and listen to the characters and write down what they do and say.
Research and sources: 17th and 18th century books on alchemy, Jewish legends, serious scholarly work on Kabbala, biographies of some of the Lunar Men and of that period.
It’s been a wild ride through lots of Jungian landscapes. It’s either a complete load of self-indulgent crap, or it’s a very good book indeed. I’m not sure I can tell the difference at this stage.
Now comes the hard part – editing.
If anyone reading this is or knows an agent or publisher who might be interested, please let me know.