Well, that was a hectic week. But the upside is that I have written three new chapters, upped the tension and the drama, and am 20k into draft 3. I reckon at this rate I should have a coherent draft by March, in time to show to my agent etc.
She read A Baby's Bones, and liked it, a lot. I am so relieved, it has given me confidence to push on with book 2 and enjoy the process, rather than be too afraid to mess with it (because it needs a lot of messing with). A few other people have had a read and liked it, too. Now, they might just be being kind, but I trust the agent to say what she thinks.
I also visited a local writers' group which is well established in Barnstaple. So well established there wasn't enough of a critical element for me personally, but some good writing nevertheless. A good environment to nurture talent, I thought. I think it's time to gather a few MA graduates and other novelists and see if North Devon has room for a group focused on long fiction. Maybe, maybe not, but I get so much back from my beta readers I know I, at least, would benefit, and maybe that would help other writers.
I'm writing a strand in New Orleans, mostly because I've always wanted to go there. It is quite difficult because I haven't been there. Trying to find the scents, sounds, sights or a place I've never been to is tricky, but the internet has been very helpful! The language is difficult to. Listening to 'native speakers' on videos of various tourist sites is tricky to translate into dialogue. It's a bit like writing a historical story, you want a hint of 'olde worlde' but not too much. Shame there aren't videos of Venice, 1587...