I've been away, I now have parents visiting, but I am trying to finish the last edits and additions to the book. I have 100,000 words, a proper plot, mostly well paced, well written prose (except the new chapters which need tidying up) and I have one short scene to finish and one to write. It's a relief, because I don't think I have ever got this far - written and rewritten a book to this standard, and it's a lot better than the book I put in for the competition! I haven't so much stuck to the simple list of edits as reorganised the book better, and balanced up the historical strand. It's now about 45% of the book, and as the other strand hots up, so does this one.
My aim for the MA was to produce a book to even, ready for submission-to-agent standard. It seems strange, even counter productive, to sit down and work on the rationale and the first 20k of the book for the dissertation! I will get down to it soon, once I've sent the book off for line editing, and got that back. Lovely stuff.
Meanwhile, because we live in a lovely place, and the wildlife tends to intrude on my concentration, I stopped to watch a peregrine falcon feeding on a wood pigeon, four feet from the window. I've seen them shoot past, occasionally snatching a sparrow out of the tree by the front door, but this one pigged out on fresh pigeon until it could barely take off.