UPDATE: ‘Live & Let Bondi’ (Baxter & Co. Mysteries Book 1)

A lot of you guys are excited for this new series.

I know that because the Live and Let Bondi page had the third most views on this website last month (beaten only by the free stuff – of course – and the page for the next Charlie book, Raising Hell).

I’ve been talking about this new series for a while, in emails to the Readers’ Group and on my YouTube channel. The idea of building up this world is so exciting to me, and the potential for cross-over characters and stuff just makes me giddy.

But recently while writing it, I’ve been kind of… blergh.

You can watch the video here for an explanation, or just keep reading for the details. (I say much the same thing in the post as in the video.)

Anyway, the story…

I’ve been writing this book for a long time, but there’s been a little problem. OK, a big problem.

The first draft was crappy. I might as well have just thrown poo at the computer, no joke. It was awful.

And I know there are some people reading this who are thinking, Clarey (because in my mind you all call me Clarey), you’re being ridiculous. Everyone knows that all first drafts are crap. Just write the book and fix it later.

But here’s the thing: I don’t write shitty first drafts. 95% of what I write in the first draft ends up in the final book, with only minor edits. The other 5% is the bit I have to fix because Alexi reads it and says, Clarey, you did that thing where you solved the crime in three seconds in the second-last chapter again. Go back and make it interesting. Then I throw a tantrum and tell him all the reasons he’s wrong before I re-read it, realise he’s right and do what he suggests.

Bastard, always being right about things.

Anyway, back to the story…

I thought and thought and finally had a flash of insight. Yes! I’d figured out what was wrong! I didn’t know the characters yet. How could I be so dumb? OBVIOUSLY that was it. So I got to know them a little better (by making them talk more in my head, mostly) and went back to it. Nope, still not flowing.

Hunh. What else could it be? The plot? No, I’d figured that all out ahead of time and I definitely knew where it was going.

The thing I’ve come to realise is that whenever I don’t want to write something, it’s because I’m scared. Super dumb, I know. What the hell do I have to be scared of? RSI? But seriously.

If I’m avoiding writing, it’s because I don’t know what I’m doing, and that scares me.

So, I decided to ditch LALB for a while, instead writing the stories that were kicking around in my head, screaming that they wanted to be written now. (And I’m halfway through a paranormal romance now. Did not see THAT coming. Having so much fun with it, though.) And while I was writing the other projects, having a great time, I thought to myself, Oh man, it’s so nice to be writing in first person again.

Yeah, it turns out I’m a massive idiot. Because the answer to why I was annoyed with LALB was so glaringly obvious, and yet I couldn’t see it.

I hate writing in third person. Like, really hate it. I’m not good at it. It scares me.

And my book was suffocating because of it.

That realisation shouldn’t have been such a shock. The whole time I was writing, I was thinking, “But what if my readers don’t like this? This is nothing like the Charlie books. The voice sounds all weird and different, and I don’t think it’s as funny, and the characters aren’t coming across like I want them to, and…”

Like I said, I’m a MASSIVE idiot.

So now I’m starting over again. Annoying that I got a quarter of the way through writing a crusty turd before I realised but oh well. I’m actually excited for this book again! Praise Aphrodite!

Now that I’m back on the right track, I’ll make sure to do a cover reveal soon! (It’s all basically done – I just want to make sure I’ve got the colours right first.)

The cover reveal has been a little delayed because my computer died a nasty death recently and so now I’m using Alexi’s. That means I have to move files onto his computer and install fonts and a bunch of other boring stuff before I can finalise the cover or create any new covers. Hence the counter down the side of this website (bottom of the page on mobile) that’s still showing how many words through Caught in the Act I am.

That book has been out for a month and a half.

Super up to date, I know. Good job, Clarey.

Anyway, I hope this post has been illuminating! I know it’s kind of long, but I wanted to make sure I explained to you why the book has been a little delayed. I just want it to be as good as possible for you!

Oh, and while we’re here, here’s an older video I haven’t posted here on the website yet. Grab yourself a cup of tea before watching this one, though. It’s a bit long. (It features me being a massive dork, though, so it’s kind of worth a watch.)

Just bear in mind that this was filmed before I realised that I hated third person. You can see the fear in my eyes when I talk about dictation – it’s because the story just isn’t working for me!

Silly past Clarey, not knowing what’s wrong. Oh well. I got there eventually!

Thank you so much for reading/watching. This is a ridiculously long post, I know. Gold star for you for making it to the end.

OK, I need to go write a scene about two wereorcas making out… and maybe a little more. Nope, not joking. More details in the next post. 😉

xx Clare

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