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The novel has now been written. It’s been a difficult, emotional, creative and psychological project which has taken a great deal of effort and tenacity. But now it is complete and the next stage is to emotionally detach and trust to other professionals…  As a regular contributor to the Essex Life series of Fish Media magazines, my column this month has summarised the process.  For those interested, please see the following: May 2013 – The Novel

12th May 2013

So as I enter into the last stage of the novel’s creation and compilation, it is such a relief. Yet also rather sad too.  You invent people and as an omnipotent presence, determine their lives, their loves, their motivations and ultimately, even their deaths. As the characters are developed and you become fond of them, visualise them in the back of your mind, walk around with them as you conduct your daily duties, it is almost with a personal loss when they are killed off. It’s not always because you want to do this, ultimately you don’t.  You grow so close to your characters they become real. They have feelings, personalities and motivations. For me personally writing a tragic scene is very difficult as essentially, I’m a very gentle person. But life and death are part of life and its eternal circle. So I will imagine how it will happen, every nuance then sleep for a few hours to help me cope with the articulation of the detail. Then you find balance with love and survival. Most importantly whatever the scene, whether erotic or gruesome, essentially it has to be relevant and not gratuitous. It has to be part of the theme and the character’s natural development. Also that the reader feels some benefit as a result of their investment of time to read your work.

Progress so far – novel nearly completed…

22nd April 2013.

 I had hoped to have finished the novel by mid-March. It didn’t happen.  Looking for inspiration, I travelled to Agadir… I sat on  a balcony overlooking Mirleft for two days. Staring out to sea, contemplating the intricacies of my character’s personalities. Living with these fictitious people is not easy – most people erroneously feel that reading a novel is as easy as writing it. It flows, it reads, it all makes sense and writers just write it all in one stint without hesitation until happy fruition.

The truth. Soul-searching, heart breaking, self-analysis, human psychological analysis, self-doubt, an insatiable creativity which demands that you find words out of thin air and characters not too far behind that nothingness! Yet despite the personal and professional pain of bringing a novel together, ironically, the novelist is always compelled to write.  We will find a potential character in the strangest of places; a doctor’s surgery, somebody in a shop, a look or an expression, a turn of phrase that makes that stranger fascinating and with a whole world of potential within a fantasy world.

Writers are observers (not voyeurs!) and our imaginations and need to create are part of our persona and raison d’etre. So despite the complaining and anguish, we plod on and strive to develop something out of nothing.

And so this blog – well I may not have finished (yet) but am now past the half-way mark.

April 2013

 Well the novel is making heady progress. Characters are being developed; experience, history and background are now influencing decisions. Walking around with the themes and characters in my head is a difficult process. Working out timelines that are also historically accurate merits research and analysis. Writing a novel is always very difficult but with an absolute commitment to this project, hopefully my enthusiasm and energy will guarantee its fruition. As an outstanding literary agent once told me: when it comes to the protagonist – why, what, when, where and how…

For more information on the novel’s development, please check back to this website. Thank you. Michelle

4th January 2013

Aside a full-time commitment to copywriting, marketing and journalism – Michelle Harris @ Star Copywriting Ltd is also writing a novel….

Developing characters, themes, twists and turns which ascertain the characters’ personal developments through experience and intrigue.

Set in Prague, London, Washington and an exotic location too.  Check back for more details and notification of a preview…