A small idea came and tugged insistently at my sleeve this afternoon.
I wasn’t going to report in today because as far as I was aware I had finished for the year. Today has been one of those days of non stop go. A bit of a house tidy, a trip over to other side of town to have coffee with a friend, newly returned from 2 yrs of travelling. Rush to the garage for petrol then to the farm shop, a few miles away, to collect delicious goodies, then with a horrified glance at a clock dashing back to the village to collect one old dog and the two cats and off to the vet. Drop them off home again and off to the supermarket for the boring stuff of life. Somewhere in all that, the small idea had hold of my new orange coat and would not be shaken away.
It talked rapidly and insistently, aware of concentration levels liable to stray elsewhere. It didn’t need to, I was intrigued. Would it work? Ah well. Together we tested it out. As I pushed a trolley up and down the aisles, as I drove through the gathering darkness, it slowly came together.
A first chapter to The Ancestor’s Tale was born:)
I have never, in all my books, had a beginning planned when I start or an end for that matter, they come, usually fairly quickly. I do have a vague idea, which my mind works on in the background, but Ancestors has never had even that. Not a clue how I could hang the tales together. I began in the spring to have an idea of how they would relate to each other, but how to start?
This persistent small idea has begun the Ancestors in the most unexpected place indeed, I would never have thought that one out! Thinking about it now, the small idea would never have been born without a summer of strengthening and polishing the whole concept. The small idea could only work because the rest was sorted, because not only the middle but the end had been settled. The most unlikely beginning was born of the hours of lying on my bed allowing Ancestors to really shake down.
It is a wonderful, smashing beginning, I am so happy with it. It is a short chapter but full of angst and sorrow, the kind I like:) It is worked out with description, dialogue and scene setting – everything – like unwrapping a present that’s perfect. What a way to finish the round.