What’s in a decade?

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What’s in a decade? Ten consecutive years. No time at all. A lifetime.

This weekend, the BBC will air the first instalment of its long awaited adaptation of Susanna Clark’s novel, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. Published in 2004, it took the author a decade to complete, ten long years of getting up early each morning in order to write before she went to work. I wonder if she’d realised at the outset just how long it would take, whether she would have started?

"Unquestionably the finest English novel of the fantastic written in the last seventy years. It's funny, moving, scary, otherworldly, practical and magical, a journey through light and shadow - a delight to read." NEIL GAIMAN

“Unquestionably the finest English novel of the fantastic written in the last seventy years. It’s funny, moving, scary, otherworldly, practical and magical, a journey through light and shadow – a delight to read.” NEIL GAIMAN

I read Susanna Clark’s story of magic in 2005, tackling the hard backed version at first but, given its size and weight, proceeding to buy a paperback version which was physically far easier to handle. 2005 was not an easy year for me and my family. I spent hours sitting by my mother’s hospice bedside as she slept through many of the hours of the last few months of the illness that took her life in October of that year. I read other novels during that time, but it was Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell that transported me to another time, another place, where, for a while, I could escape the reality of my world. As I read that wonderful book, I never dreamed I would actually write a book of my own. Well, three books to be accurate. My second, Strong as Death, I published in 2014. My third, Selkie, will be online at the end of May. The first? Who knows what the next decade will bring?
The Shadow Realm - rewrite ???

The Shadow Realm – rewrite ???

I do, however, know what the next seven Sunday evenings hold in store …

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7 thoughts on “What’s in a decade?

    • I wrote it as the first in a trilogy and it is “finished”, however it needs work to put it into better shape. I am also undecided as to whether to condense the whole concept into one book.

      I have other writing projects I want to pursue before I return to my first book, and when/if I do finally go back to it, I want it to be with a very clear idea of how best to rewrite it.

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  1. You have definitely piqued my interest in this book, Julia. With yours and Neil Gaiman’s (I have been a huge fan of his for years) endorsement behind it, I expect it must be good.
    As far as rewrites go, I have a couple of old manuscripts that I think merits pulling out of my closet and going over again someday.
    Congrats on getting out that second book!
    Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to trot over to Amazon and buy it. 🙂 And maybe Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I hope you get lots of reading done now that you’ve redistributed your priorities. Enjoy every word on every precious page you niw devour 🙂

      As for reworking old manuscripts, I find myself currently doing just that, which I had’t planned when I wrote this post. Strange the turns we sometimes make … can’t wait to read Quoth the Raven …

      Liked by 1 person

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