Just a quick chirpy post.

I have banked 30k worth of words tonight.  I am a happy camper.  *does snoopy dance of joy*

My treat to myself for this is to finish reading Discord’s Apple by Carrie Vaughn tonight.  And then once that is devoured (not many pages left), I can continue reading my new Charles de Lint – The Painted Boy, which I’ve already dipped into on the train home from Forbidden Planet today.

I love Charles de Lint.  Especially when I get a new book of his and get utterly drawn into the story before I’m even on page ten.  That is good writing.

I feel so buoyed up about writing today – my reason is simple: yesterday I attended a day at Walker Books in Vauxhall.  I was there as a blogger, along with a handful of other bloggers, to listen to the amazing peeps at Walker talk about their upcoming books.  (All very exciting!)  But what was cooler still is that they invited Zoe Marriott to come and talk to us.  Now I’ve read one of the two books Zoe had published to date: Daughter of the Flames, which I utterly loved and enjoyed.  So having the unexpected chance to meet her, really got my fangirliness going.

She came all the way from Grimsby, trekking through the snow and braving London’s crappy transport system, to meet us and talk to us about her new book being published next year.  It is called Shadows on the Moon.

What I love as a reader and aspiring writer is meeting authors who are enthusiastic about their writing but who don’t pretend that it is all just perfect.  That the writer sits down at the desk and within 1 month there is this utterly perfect piece of writing.  Zoe’s honesty about her struggle to get to the completed product and the false starts with other projects really resonated with me. Deeply intense and frighteningly funny Zoe chatted freely about writing Shadow and how the world just kept on growing and expanding.  And how, even as an experienced writer, she found herself putting in so much about her world, that when it came to the edits, she had to cut back a lot of extra content because although she found it very interesting, the reader may not.

Two other bloggers who were there, are also aspiring writers, so we hung on Zoe’s lips as she chatted about her experiences, how she came up with the concept and idea for Shadows on the Moon.  And this I really found interesting – as all authors get asked where their ideas come from, and it both the most hated question in the multiverse, but also the most interesting one, especially when an author has a ready answer.  She was saying how she was tired of having Cinderella be the most boring and vapid of fairytale heroines.  So she decided that Cinders is maybe only acting that vapid and domestic – maybe, she does it because she is sussing out her enemy.  And that the real story is perhaps not of Cinders meeting Prince Charming, but of Cinders taking revenge on the people who had her father killed.

I love this – the whole Cinderella / Count of Monte Cristo mash up.  It completely works for me.  And so, when I came to sit down to write tonight, with Zoe’s enthusiasm and words still spinning around in my head, the words came but I really was aware of my setting and the impact what I’m writing has to have on the real world my characters inhabit.  I also have to give a nod to the lovely Sarah who talked me down on Friday.  Sometimes with your nose squashed against a scene, you can’t see the bigger picture.

So two very lovely people are to thank for pushing me into my 30k.  Thanks Sarah for being on the other side of that email and thanks Zoe for your boundless energy and clever mile a minute talk.