Just when I thought it was safe…
In my fifteen years as a writer, and with the exception of a few short stories, my work has always taken place in the 21st century. I have recently completed my fourth novel with all the advantages and disadvantages of modern technology. Mobile phones, for instance, with their instant access when really it would be much easier on the plot if contact couldn’t be immediate. How often can one pull the ‘no signal’ card? On the other hand, emails and instant messaging can and have proved a real asset at times.
But with no new plot thrusting itself to the front of my mind I wondered about changing my time setting. I looked at some of my short stories for inspiration. I thought of those authors I most like to read. Not all were contemporary. Georgette Heyer was almost my first love and most of my copies of her books have disintegrated over time. Frederica fell to pieces when I dropped her in the bath! Sadly I don’t think she’s still available with the old green cover. A seed was planted and I ordered six books. More will follow.
Then there’s Jane Austen. I never got on with Emma but Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility and Persuasion are long-standing favourites.
Could I write a Regency novel?
What about the future? One of my stories, Beyond the Fringe, a sci-fi, appears in the anthology Fusion. I had a lot of fun with that one and it still makes me smile but a whole book? I think not.
Continuing to rifle through my short stories I found another that appeals and which I feel sure I could convert into a time-slip. The thought both attracts and terrifies me but what is writing without a challenge?
So…am I procrastinating? Absolutely not! I will continue to ‘play’ for a while longer until one of the now several ideas buzzing in my head shouts ME! Then the work will truly begin. After all, with contemporary romance I have had the luxury of minimal and accessible research. This new venture, if indeed I move out of my comfort zone, will take time and a huge amount of hard work and planning. For someone who is normally a pantster the thought is terrifying – but at the same time incredibly appealing. Regency/Time-Slip. Time-Slip/Regency. I’m hoping one of them will call loudly and strongly in the next few days.