Guess where I was yesterday?
Yes, I was in Abbotsbury, of course, to do some novel-related research!
I have been blogging about Abbotsbury since falling in love with the village, the area and Dorset in general 10 years ago (10 years in September this year!).
And 4 and a half years ago, we took the plunge and moved to Dorset (sadly, not to the Abbotsbury area as it was way over our house budget!).
The first draft of The Right Place, my third novel, inspired by the lyrics of the song The Wind by PJ Harvey and by the landscape and history of the area, is still in progress (so many things have happened since I started working on it!) and far from being finished, but my new publishing schedule gives me a publishing date of 2023 (I cannot be more precise as it will depend on how much work I can get done on the novel over the next year or so).
Often, I get stuck. For example, at the moment, I just cannot decide where to put the entrance of the smuggler's tunnel that will lead my characters to the subterranean chamber underneath St Catherine's chapel! So a little trip to Abbotsbury to have another look at the house where my main character lives helped a bit!
Last month, I completed a scene in which Kat and Cathy encounter this handsome chap below (white horse) and some kind of magical connection happens... I was glad when he reappeared in the field yesterday!
Abbey Farm Flowers have taken over this building and have turned it into a really gorgeous explosion of colour! You can pick your own flowers...
It is such a privilege to live on this coast! This is on our doorstep...
What, you say, no pictures of St Catherine's Chapel?
I have posted so many over the years... I'm keeping it for my next visit (good excuse to go back...). It's on the way to Bridport and West Bay (where we have our unit at The Customs House), and so it's easy for us to stop off and spend some time in this unique place.
In the book, a very special event happens at the top of Chapel Hill on 25th November, and of course, I will need to visit many times this autumn as my book is set mainly at that time!
I have four weeks to do as much work as possible on The Right Place and I hope I can make some good progress this summer...
The last time I did any work on the first draft of my third novel, The Right Place, was on 27th May.
Unfortunately, writing books doesn't pay the bills and real life has taken over once again.
I now have just two months to make as much progress as possible on the first draft because it looks like I will not be able to work on the book between September and December.
I've drafted yet another Publishing schedule which gives me a Pub Date of March 2023 for the book.
Probably too optimistic, but there we are...
Last November, we discovered yet another peaceful and secluded corner of Dorset only a few miles from our home: the living churchyard at St Peter's church Long Bredy. At the time, the trees were deprived of leaves and nature had retreated a little, bracing itself for the winter... Granted, it still looked glorious in the November sun as seen in my BLOG.
Now that the summer has arrived, nature has literally exploded into lush and thick greenery; the hedges and trees are full of life (we spent ages observing a family of robins and their neighbours - wrens, dunnocks, sparrows... it's always better than TV!), and the living churchyard is full of oxeye daisies and other wild flowers...
The Dorset coast, where we live, can get incredibly busy and difficult to navigate in the summer months; every year, we head inland and make it our mission to discover secret places where we can seek refuge and immerse ourselves in nature. We will be adding this peaceful corner of the Bride Valley to our list.
Near the church is a house I wish I'd bought (if I had been able to afford it, it's close to £600,000!): the truly gorgeous Schoolmaster's House). The location is a dream...
In other news, I am about to resume work on The Right place - I haven't touched my first draft for two months...
I hope to make good progress this summer and to publish in early 2023. Watch this space!
I think therefore I write.
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