Running away can be the answer if you run to the right place…
When Cassie accepts a job as companion to an old lady in a remote Lancashire village, she hopes for a quiet life where she can forget herself, her past and most especially men. The last thing she wants is to be drawn into saving a community that seems determined to take her to its heart – and to resuscitate hers…
Frances has lived a reclusive life at Ramblings, a Victorian Gothic mansion, for over thirty years and now Barney is hiding away there, forging a new life after his medical career ended in scandal. He doesn’t trust the mysterious woman who comes to live with his rich aunt, especially when she starts to steal Frances’ affection – and maybe his own too…
Today I’m spotlighting a book that I really, really wanted to read – but I’ve had to accept that I just can’t read everything, however much I want to! The Magic of Ramblings by Kate Field was published by Accent Press on 8th September, available in paperback and for kindle – and doesn’t it sound just lovely?
I’m delighted to welcome Kate with a guest post about the story that got away…
Something strange happened before I started writing The Magic of Ramblings. I was struck by an unexpected and uncharacteristic urge to plan.
In the plotter vs pantster debate, I’m definitely with the pantsters. I fill in character questionnaires for the heroine and hero, and can spend hours on the Internet researching information that I’ll probably never use. I know how the story begins and how it ends, and have a hazy idea of a few events and conversations somewhere in between. Once I’m at that point, I pick up my pen and leave it to the characters to fill in the blanks.
But with Ramblings, inspired by blog posts from authors whose wizardry with words made planning sound both possible and helpful, I decided to give it a go.
I immediately ruled out the idea of writing a chapter by chapter synopsis – there wouldn’t even be enough wizardry at Hogwarts to persuade me to try that. So after wasting more hours on the Internet, I decided to prepare a basic plot spreadsheet.
I diligently filled it in with all the scenes and events I’d thought of so far, and discovered something that everyone else probably already knew. Planning wasn’t a dull chore, that delayed the fun part of creating a story. Writing down ideas, and seeing the timeline of a story take shape, generated more ideas. The story of Barney and Cassie took off; Frances demanded a far bigger role than I’d intended to give her. The first few chapters poured on to the page.
Then it all went wrong. We went away on holiday, and because of baggage restrictions on a small aircraft, I left my laptop at home. I write the first draft in longhand, so that wasn’t a problem. But we arrived home to find that we’d been burgled – a devastating experience that could fill a blog post in itself – and amongst the many, many things stolen, my laptop had gone.
Most of my writing was safe, as I’ve always been vigilant in backing it up. But I’d overlooked the plot spreadsheet, and I didn’t have a digital or printed copy anywhere. All the work I’d put into it – all those ideas – were lost.
There was no happy ending with the burglary. We didn’t recover any of the items taken, and it took a long time to deal with the physical and emotional aftermath, during which time my writing lay untouched.
Eventually the urge to write returned, and this time there was a happy ending. I finished the story of Barney and Cassie and found a publisher that loved it as much as I did. I hope everyone else loves it too. But I’ll always wonder what was on that lost spreadsheet, and how differently the original Magic of Ramblings might have turned out.
Ah Kate, I’m so glad you managed to recover from that one! Wishing you every success with The Magic of Ramblings…
With thanks to Kate and tour organiser Brook Cottage Books, I’m pleased to be able to offer one lucky reader the chance to win an Amazon voucher for £25 or equivalent. Here’s the rafflecopter for entry:
Kate Field lives in Lancashire with her husband, daughter, and a recently arrived Russian Blue kitten, who may prove so distracting that she never has time to write again. The Magic of Ramblings is her first published novel. Follow Kate on both Facebook and Twitter.