Monday, May 30, 2011

In which I return to Blogland, refreshed - or avowal of new direction of blog in one post only

I did not mean to desert you, my dear friends who still faithfully check in, in the hopes that I might have something to say to you.

Here, I have returned! I shall tell you of my adventures – such as they are. I am returned for good partly because I am writing away at what my educational establishment would call my ‘Masters dissertation’ and what I would call ‘my greatly enjoyable YA fantasy novel filled with lots of fun and exciting things’. I wish to tell you about it, and I hope that someday it will become a real book and you will love it and me already and so buy it immediately, with great joy.

My current work-in-progress will be herein referred to as FQ because that’s what I call it, unoriginally, as it is a modern YA fantasy reimagining of Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queene, an epic Arthurian-styled Elizabethan poem. Note, if you are not familiar with Spenser, that I really do mean epic – my FQ is based on just one of the ‘books’ of The Faerie Queene and is intended to be the first in a 6-7 book series. My story is set in modern-day Devon, England and it stars teenagers Nessa Goldsmith and Christopher Crosse who set out on a quest to rescue Nessa’s disabled mother who has disappeared. But it is also about loyalty and betrayal, trust, deception and delusion, all of which are vital themes in Book 1 of Spenser’s original.

It also has monsters in the living room, ogres on the moor, human villains and ordinary people in conflict. I have drawn much on Spenser’s original, purposefully, and I hope that the story will reflect enough of this to show my debt. At the same time, I have twisted, updated and refashioned the characters and plot points of the original until they are entirely my own, and I have very much my own story to tell.

I’m not going to tell you an awful lot about it now as it is in early stages – only two chapters written but they’re long ones. You will hear more, I promise!

Over the next few months, this blog will meander through the following areas:

  • Writing posts: Writing this book (and the dilemmas and struggles which go with it – and may be just me, or may be universal)
  • Reading posts: Yes, reading Holly Black and Robin McKinley is research in Creative Writing MA-land, and excellent research it is too. I shall give you reviews and musings.
  • Research posts: This might be bits of my exciting research into Spenser, allegory, and the great tome that is The Faerie Queene, it might also be more general writing posts, or about genre and the current world of YA fantasy
  • Other things!: Because I cannot write all the time. I must go to work (we shall avoid this topic where possible), I must knit (we shall not avoid this topic), I must watch television. I must even know about the news and current affairs. I reserve the right to discuss these things unreservedly.

I expect the above to continue, wide-ranging and all-encompassing as it is, but most excitingly it looks likely that I shall be commencing an even more enticing project this October. Still semi-secret but think: Regency romance meets the Arabian Nights meets lots and lots of magic! Stay tuned.

This is an explaining sort of post – next ones will be more interesting, and more fun. To end:

FQ Word Count: