Echoes of an Author

“And no one speaks and no one tires and no one flies around the sun….”

– Pink Floyd, Echoes.


Life happens when you’re busy writing somebody else’s


Okay so I’m going to freely admit that I’m only writing this blog post because I am trapped in the hell that is dying my hair. Think Tin Foil Man meets Carrie. Please bear with me as my consciousness bleeds through my fingertips.


Yesterday I reached a crucial point in my latest book, Folie a Deux. It was a moment a long time in the making and a sort of relief set in late last night. For the past few months I have been feeling stressed, particularly about this book. It hasn’t been the easiest. The themes are quite different to The Dark Places Trilogy. However, they are far from trivial. The challenge I faced was to mask the psychological disjoint that is to come. A smooth beginning, instead of rushing to the action, was required to build the tension, establish the characters in their own right – as individual people before bringing them together.  For reasons that will become clear upon release, this was part of the core idea of the story and it was probably the hardest.


It feels very much that I am on the plateau of the hill. I’m exhausted from the journey up, and I’m enjoying the view immensely. Perhaps I’ll have a chocolate bar to restock my energy levels. It’s been a nice trip so far, interesting and extremely arduous at points. I feel pleased that I made it up here and I’m glad I did. However, now I just want to tumble down the other side – fall free, savour the easy ride. I can’t wait for that moment to come. Hopefully by the time my hair has set and I’ve scrubbed the red splatters from my flat, I’ll capture a paragraph or two.


In the next few posts I’ll probably talk a little bit about the inspiration behind Folie a Deux. Like The Dark Places Trilogy, it’s been an idea that I’ve carried with me for a very long time. Every day this year I have thought about my characters. For a while I thought I had lost them – there was a period of time where I felt that I couldn’t connect with either of them and I was frightened that I couldn’t continue. Thankfully, that has changed. I am not sure I would have been able to rest easy having never completed Folie a Deux.


However, my main point of this post – other than to distract myself from the tedious advancement of time – was to talk about how life sometimes gets in the way of writing. In the past, there have been countless times where I have planned an entire day of writing only to be thwarted at the last minute because of a drama or an unexpected technical issue (thank you Google Lady in Texas for all your help). It’s interesting how much stock I place in these dedicated hours to write. I build it up in my mind and I allow those emotions to fester, bake inside me. I deliberately deny myself the chance to write so that I can explode when the time is right and there is nothing more frustrating than having these feelings denied. I become angry and annoyed, even enraged. It’s not anyone’s fault – though perhaps occasionally mine for poor planning – yet, still, it feels like a personal attack.


As an author though, this comes with the territory. Regrettably I can not afford to live a thousands lives in the time I have one. I cannot suspend time and pour my soul out into another book. I cannot fail to eat or cancel on every social event. I can’t skive the gym time and time again and I certainly can’t drop off the face of the planet indefinitely until I sort out my feelings about characters who don’t exist. Eventually us little authors have to face the harsh and frightening reality that life, despite our whimpers and tantrums, is going to happen with or without our permission.


S.G Mark



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