It’s been a great couple of weeks. We decided – after cancelling a trip to Arizona – to spend a couple of weeks bumbling about our old stomping grounds in the Gulf Islands in Peanut. It’s been about 4 years since we sold our sloop Fainleog and I had forgotten how spectacularly gorgeous this part of the world is, especially this early in the season when most nautical yahoos are still at home and anchorages are empty.
One of the real delights in being a novelist – in part because it’s such a rare occurrence it never gets old – is the completion of a book. And I just did. Complete a book. Whoopie!
One of the questions I often get is “how long did it take?”, which really is impossible to answer. I started the book over ten years ago, sometime in the mid noughts. But that was the first incarnation. Then I started playing with it, changing a great deal of its structure, not liking the result, and then abandoned it. Since then I wrote and published another novel, A Dark and Promised Land.
It’s funny how we have to learn the same critical life lessons again and again and again. This isn’t a function of aluminum pots or heavy drug use, nor is it a function of subtlety of the lesson or an obtuse personal nature. Something else is at work that makes a person slip up again and again.
Human weakness is undoubtedly a big part of this, as well as social pressure, ego, and the media. But before I carry on with this analysis, I suppose I should describe more clearly what exactly I’m babbling about.