"Where the hell have you been?"
I've actually had a lot of people ask me that lately. Ed's Dead came out in the UK in 2017, and since then...? Well, its been a little quiet, let's say that. Not that I haven't been working -- I've been editing a LOT of books, and I've been writing a number of articles (for the latest, see the April issue of Writer's Magazine, where I talk about the lessons prose writers can learn from screenwriters) as well as taking part in the excellent Write4Film program from the Scottish Film Talent Network. But between all of that, where I would normally find the time to write, things have been slow.
It started at Bouchercon in New Orleans, at the tail end of 2016. Some people who were there will know I had a small asthma attack while I was there. I didn't think much of it at the time, but what then happened was that my asthma got worse over the next year, to the point where I was hospitalised for a few days during the Edinburgh Book Festival in 2017. I came out, thinking all was well, and things were for a bit. But we had something of an issue where we had to find a new place to live at short notice, something that went on much longer than it should have. And then, in 2018, I found myself struggling with kidney stones for about six months. If you've had kidney stones, you'll know how painful they can be. And what I now know is that when they get stuck on the way out, the pain ramps up even further. They were finally removed after three attempts at the tail end of 2018, and since then I've just been trying to get everything back in order.
But I'm writing again -- a new book is slowly forming, and I'm really excited about it. It'll see me return to writing about Dundee, although many years before McNee showed up on the scene... yes, I'm writing about the past, and I'm hugely enjoying it. I just hope my publishers will like it!
I may also have a few other exciting projects on the go, so while I haven't seen many publications since Ed, please don't worry -- I'll be back! I'm so grateful, however, the superb community who've supported me through this. From my partner - the brilliant Lesley McDowell (go read her book, Unfashioned Creatures, and do it now!) - to my agent, Al Guthrie, and the publishers of Ed's Dead, the wonderful Saraband, along with many others, people have been hugely understanding.
But 2019 feels like a fresh start. Which is why I've updated a few areas of the website, and intend to try and keep this blog up to date with a mix of thoughts, writing tips, and general insanity.
Watch this space, folks. I'm baaaackk....