Well, that’s it. The Sussex Devils is finished. Now it’s gone to the printers and I guess you’ll receive your copy in a few weeks or so. So this is my final “Shed” message.
At the end of any definitive process (books, movies, careers, sex, dinner, relationships, maybe life itself) there’s an ambivalent feeling. On the one hand, some relief at reaching the period. Phew, I made it. That was exhausting / educational / stomach-churning / exhilarating / probably illegal / too expensive: what’s next?
On the other…
Looking at my files, I see that I first saved a 6,000 word draft in the first week of November 2012. I had about 65,000 words by May 2013 and sent it out to agents over those next few weeks. It was a much dryer, journalistic piece back then. After I signed with Robert at A M Heath (sometime in July) I then rewrote it, finishing up in February 2014, by which time it was 100,000 words and in its essential form. The afterword and a few trims came months later, after the deal with Unbound. But the writing was complete by March this year. The past few months have been slower and more fiddly; dealing with the cover, nailing down the font and layout, making small factual and grammatical corrections. Now it's done.
That’s a shade under three years from first click of keyboard to final power down. Long time. So obviously, some tristesse too.
I hope you make it to the end of The Sussex Devils. Let me know how you find it (exhausting / educational / stomach-churning / exhilarating / probably illegal / too expensive, etc.).
And thanks again for your support.
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