I spoke to Philippa Milnes-Smith today about the 'next thing'. I don't want to go into too much detail about what this is at this stage, other than to say it is another creepy novel, but this time contemporary and urban. Of course I will say more if Bloomsbury like what I write as a sample. I am writing a synopsis and a couple of chapters to give them a feel for what the book is going to read like. And hopefully - like any potential reader - to get them hooked.
So as well as getting to grips with the second draft of The Dead of Winter, I am also looking past that to the next book. It is always like this. No book is ever written in isolation. Or none of mine anyway. You are always writing one thing, promoting another, editing something else, jotting down new ideas, trying to convince your agent/publisher of the merits of some new book.
I sent a couple of possible synopses off to Philippa last week and, as always, she had some very cogent comments to make - one of which has made change direction in a way that will definitely improve the book. Philippa, like many agents has a background in editing, and it shows. Editors are really annoying readers. They will insist in finding plot holes and inconsistencies. Infuriating.
I was talking about the editing process not so long ago and have made it plain on several occasions that I think the editing process in books is under appreciated outside the book world and there is an excellent article about this very subject on the Guardian books blog.