There are points when I wonder if I’ll ever finish this book. Not because I fear I’m going to give up – I’m not – but because it just seems to keep on going, no matter how hard I try to get it to hurry up. Hopefully this doesn’t mean that the pacing is completely off; with luck readers won’t have the same feeling!

It’s not that I’m not enjoying it either. I haven’t enjoyed the writing process this much since writing those first few Tranton chapters back in…whenever it was. 2003?

I suspect it’s a simple case of ‘finishing straight’ – for the first time I know I’m near to the end, I can see it, it’s just…there. And yet it stretches away from me, always just out of reach. Progress is fast and good still, though, despite me slipping past my second self-imposed deadline of the end of March. That’s what’s so frustrating, that no matter how fast I try to write, it’s not enough. Still, at least I’m not still writing at my 2008 pace, as I’d be nowhere near the home stretch.

There’s a growing excitement in me that people will be able to read this in just a matter of months. Not the snippets and jumbled versions I’ve printed and given out to a select few people in the past, but proper, complete works. Or mostly complete. Abandoned, perhaps, as the saying goes?

The plan is something like this:

April – Finish 1st draft. Despite interruptions such as a Derbyshire holiday, I’m determined to get the first draft finished this month.

May – Complete 2nd draft. This will be largely the same as the 1st draft, but with an amended first third to bring it in line with some plot amendments that I’ve made as I’ve gone along. This version I will send out to the people that have kindly offered to edit/offer criticism.

July – After a break and hopefully having received some feedback, I’ll get to work on the 3rd draft, which will function as a release candidate. It’s then just a matter of continual revisions until I have something I’m happy to publish (either ‘properly’ or self publish).

The good news is that once the 1st draft is done I can start to look at other projects as well, such as the film version of The Detective and the Robot.

Right, time to write some more.

Reset and start the clock Mr Gaeta:

30 days remaining.

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