Ghostwriter Diaries – Feet Up

Notebook

Every ghostwriter has to put his feet up once in a while. That’s what I’m doing right now. The trouble with being a ghost, of course, is that your feet go right through the coffee table.

The reason for this self-indulgent behaviour? Well, the first novel of the fantasy trilogy I’m steadily working my way through was published earlier this month. The first crop of review have planted it firmly in the “4 stars out of 5” zone. Which is fantastic.

Best of all, some reviews are coming straight from middle-grade readers – the target audience – via educational blogs designed to give youngsters a safe forum in which to air their views. It’s refreshing to read these. Young people don’t mess around trying to be clever or polite – they just say it how it is. Good or bad.

In this case, the feedback’s generally good. Most readers favour the second half of the book over the first (who’d have thought an action-packed finale would be so popular?), with several citing a preference for the gory bits, fully supporting my theory that kids are suckers for a bit of splatter. If I provoke at least one “Eeugh!” per reader, I consider that a good job done.

Meanwhile, book 2 is safely delivered, which means I’m now waiting patiently to receive the outline for the third and final book. That will land on my desk in September, at which point it’ll be time to gas up with all the good words and put my pedal to the metal once more.

And in case you thought this “feet on the coffee table” behaviour means I’m idle, nothing could be further from the truth. I’m still pumping out weekly articles on movies and visual effects for the Cinefex blog, and also taking the opportunity to (a) organise my vast collection of notebooks, half-baked stories and broken novels and (b) reflect on the shape of this, my sixth writing life.

And before you argue – yes, ghosts do have reflections. You were thinking of vampires.

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