And then the commissioning editor dropped a bombshell: he wanted Book 2 finished and on his desk by 9th November! I burst into tears when I got the email, as I knew I just couldn't carry on writing at this pace without a break. I emailed him back saying I just couldn't do it by that date... that I needed a couple of weeks off to recover and recharge my batteries. Fortunately, he has agreed, so it will probably be the end of November.
The provisional title is the title I gave it when I wrote the original book about seven years ago: PERFECT LIVES. The new version bears little resemblance to the first manuscript. Even the writing style is different. All that remains of the original are the names, the basic plot and a couple of paragraphs I have been able to copy and paste into the new book. Hachette, the publisher, plan to release it as an e-book at Christmas and follow it up with Book 2 in the New Year. The price will be £3.99. If there are sufficient downloads - 10,000 is the target, they will then publish a print version. I really want to see it in print, so I hope people will buy it, and that will depend on what kind of publicity they give it.
Mr Grumpy is buying me a Kindle for Christmas and birthday combined, so I can read my own book - and, of course, buy all the e-books my friends have written! I've been dying to do that for ages.
On Tuesday I took my painful fingers to be looked at by an orthopaedic consultant at Hillingdon Hospital. What a performance! Having waited half an hour to be seen, I was sent off for an x-ray. I came back, waited to be seen again, and lo and behold, they wanted my hands x-rayed at a different angle. So back I went again, waited for the x-ray, came back, waited to be seen again... and that wasn't the right angle, either. so back I went to x-ray again... Finally, with the right x-ray having been sent to the consultant's computer, he had a look, shook his head, said my hands are horribly arthritic and he could only give me a new finger joint on one finger, even though I have three that need one urgently as they won't bend any more. Not only that, he said unless I was prepared to give up typing and playing the piano and anything else that required using my fingers too much, it wasn't worth doing it as it would last less than two years and he wouldn't be able to re-do it.
So that's that. Sooner or later, my fingers will fuse in a rigid position and then the pain should stop. I have thought about Speech Recognition Software, but someone I know used it to write a book and said it never managed to learn his voice properly and the amount of corrections he had to do meant that it would have been easier to type it in the first place.
For the last two days I have been smothering my fingers in Glucosamine Gel and putting arnica gel on at night. Today, they don't feel too bad. In fact, I have just typed out a timeline for Book 2. Onwards and upwards!