Delighted to be the next stop on the Nemesister by Sophie Jonas-Hill blog tour today. For my stop I have a wonderful and very honest guest post from the author on her typical writing day. I reckon more than a few of us can relate to this. Enjoy!
An American Gothic thriller of deception and obsession, slicked in sweat and set in the swamps of Louisiana.
It’s a psychological mystery where the female protagonist stumbles into a deserted shack with no memory but a gun in her hand. There she meets an apparent stranger, Red, and the two find themselves isolated and under attack from unseen assailants.
Barricaded inside for a sweltering night, cabin fever sets in and brings her flashes of insight which might be memory or vision as the swamp sighs and moans around her.
Exploring in the dark she finds hidden keys that seem to reveal her identity and that of her mysterious host, but which are the more dangerous – the lies he’s told her, or the ones she’s told herself?
Nemesister is out now and available to pre order from Amazon.
My typical writing day, by Sophie Jonas-Hill.
Most mornings I wake with a sense of deepening guilt that I haven’t done nearly enough writing, while refusing to acknowledge that much of this is because I’ve been in bed for the last ten hours. I won’t say asleep, because my son is thirteen months old and still sleeps in a bed next to mine, though that too is a massive exaggeration, as mostly he spends the night, on, around or on top of me, thrashing from side to side.
Once I have got him and his sister ready for school, I make a shopping list, which I count towards the day’s hoped for word tally, and stands out as a shining moment of effortless brilliance in a schedule of procrastination and self doubt. The procrastination consists of walking my daughter to school, doing the shopping with my infant son, staring at things in charity shops, scrolling through Pinterest and pretending this is for work, using thing from Pinterest for my work, trying to get my son to sleep, trying to help him stay asleep, and housework. In the brief moments that a) he is asleep b) nothing good pops up on social media and c) the burning heat of guilt at letting my characters down becomes unbearable, I will flip my lap top onto Scrivener and stare at the mass of neatly organised words as the line up against me.
I have the phrase ‘Write, don’t think,’ written wherever I can get away with, and with luck, throughout the morning’s business of avoidance, the tiny, pleading voice of my current novel has been whispering into my inner ear through life’s clamour, and now, as I turn off my thinking brain like a desperate engineer willing the massive cogs of their steam ship to go into reverse, somehow, from somewhere, the story clatters through my fingers like so much verbal iron-mongery falling down stairs. For a bright, brilliant, wonderful moment I am in the zone, my fingers are electric and the words they hammer out on the screen are pure, solid gold.
Then almost inevitably, one of three things happens – the baby awakes from his gentle slumber with a banshee scream (and I curse Cyril Connolly once more), the post man comes with an over sized letter than turns out to be a flyer from a furniture company from the town we no longer live in, or I get an email, or all three, and the moment, gilded and bright, is shattered.
The rest of the day I relax into a mushy haze of life and work, letting myself off the hook by reassuring myself that I’ve done it; I’ve committed thought to virtual paper and so am still technically allowed to call myself a writer, until I make the daily, fatal mistake of reading what I’ve written. This inevitably brings tears to my eyes as the gilded glow of my words tarnishes into the soul sucking revelation that they are all TERRIBLE. For the rest of the evening I mutter to myself about what a disaster I am, until a few seconds before bed time, usually while brushing my teeth, THE SOLUTION hits me and I struggle to write frantic notes on my phone, praying that the baby will stay asleep just long enough to allow me get them down, (Damn you, Cyril Connolly, again) and I fall into to bed for another restless night, unconsciously aware of the whispers of my novel, telling me not to be so hard on myself, before it all starts again in the morning.
“There is no more sombre enemy of good art than the pram in the hall.” Cyril Connolly