It felt just a little bit surreal. Last week, at Aye Write, I had watched and listened to Theresa Talbot interviewing David Ross on his new book The Rise and Fall of the Miraculous Vespas.
Last night, I was in The Avenue, Newton Mearns Shopping Centre, to hear Jeffrey Deaver talk to Theresa about his new book, The Steel Kiss. This was part of a series of events created by an enterprising young chap called Craig, who runs Waterstone’s in the centre.
In conversation with Theresa, Jeffrey talked about the process of writing. Quoting Flaubert
“Books aren’t made in the way that babies are: they are made like pyramids, There’s some long-pondered plan, and then great blocks of stone are placed one on top of the other, and it’s back-breaking, sweaty, time consuming work.”, Deaver talked about his writing process.
He is highly organised and outlines his book for around 8 months until he knows exactly what he is doing. That book will change a little, but the final copy will be 90% of the original outline.
He says he wakes up every day terrified that he will disappoint his readers. He really does not want to get it wrong. Alive to the danger that he may write the same book, given the way he likes to set a pattern to his work, he works hard to give his readers a thrill ride.
He agreed that forensic science advances had made life more difficult and said he has to offer a credible reason why forensic science is not good enough to solve the crime. Similarly, you have to be creative and not opt for mundane things like phone batteries dying at inopportune moments, or losing a signal at a critical patch.
Deaver’s advice to writers is to be organised, to know where you are going. Write what you like to read and don’t write to fill the market – the market will have moved on before you get there. Rejection is a speed bump, not a brick wall, live with it. His first book was rejected by everyone.
It was a terrific evening and felt really quite intimate. And of course, I got my signed copy.