I’m caught within a crease of time, a crease that lies between the end of one book and the beginning of another. Having typed THE END on my second book, Bodies, with great satisfaction a couple of weeks ago I’m missing the rush of having an idea dancing just ahead of me, of chasing that idea with words and the pleasure of knowing I’ve caught it.
I have a couple of fledging ideas for the next book but I’m not sure that either are worth novelising. I remember when I finished What is Left Over, After that I felt the same way. As if I would never again have another idea that I would eventually turn into a book. And then one day I was reading The Financial Review – something I don’t normally do I should add – when I came across a sentence in an article which I knew instantly was the genesis of my next book. A couple of months later I watched the movie The Painted Veil and the way the relationship between the husband and wife was portrayed – from love to hate and back to love – captivated me. Those two things came together as the foundations of Bodies.
So I know I’ve been stuck in this crease of time before. That it does unfold, that I do escape with an idea and then a book. But I’ve also begun to think that my life may be too claustrophobic for ideas at the moment. It goes without saying that having three small children is vastly different to having one or two. But the key difference is that I have no time to think. No time to explore.
Because what I should be doing is reading widely – things I wouldn’t ordinarily read, like The Financial Review (maybe not that again, I’m not sure that ideas would lurk twice in such an unlikely source.) I should be going to the theatre, watching films, listening to music. Playschool, The Wiggles Greatest Hits and Where is The Green Sheep have probably become a little too familiar to be capable of producing an idea for my next book. But paying $20 an hour for babysitting just to go see a movie is a big investment.
But when I think of the exhileration of knowing you’ve stumbled across the idea for your next book, it’s an investment that’s probably worth it. So I’m off to check out what’s on offer during PIAF over the next couple of weeks. Hopefully I’ll be back blogging soon about the fear and the thrill of starting to write my third book.