It’s five months since the publication of my debut novel, Too Close to Breathe and I’ve just finished a round of edits on the second book in the Frankie Sheehan series, The Killer in Me. The further on in this process I go, the more I realise that every novel has its own habit and so every time it’s like I’m doing this for the first time. For the last few projects I’ve worked on, my preferred way to edit has been to make a list (love a good list!) and go through the project over and again crossing off my list as I go. This time, I felt every change to the manuscript. Each change felt scary. And fear made me shy away from what needed to be done because it’s harder to make brave decisions about your plot when you know people are watching. I’m also reminded of how much stamina is required to go back into a novel again and again to edit. But I’ve survived and as always it feels great to knock a novel into shape, and to feel excitement about sharing it with readers. Roll on April 2019!
Frankie has a challenge on her hands in this book, but she’s feeling confident, sure of her experience and knowledge. However, as the investigation takes off she begins to question her own views on right and wrong and it forces her to consider how big the gap really is between someone who kills and someone who doesn’t. I found this quote from Russian novelist, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn which goes some way to describing the themes in The Killer in Me:
“The battleline between good and evil runs through the heart of every man.”
One of my characters, in a line now cut from the manuscript (for various reasons) but which also touches on this, says to Frankie: “You don’t need to study a killer, Detective. You just need to take a good look inside. We all have it in us.”
This next novel also brings Frankie a little closer to home and hopefully readers will be pleased that they’ll get a better sense of her home and family.
More ideas are pushing through on more books and although I can hardly type with tiredness, I feel that familiar urge to begin again. Something new. Sometimes when you’re nearing the end of a project, it can feel as though you’ll never come up with more ideas so it’s nice to hear new voices and start thinking of new plot ideas.
If you haven’t read Too Close to Breathe yet, you can order it by clicking here: Waterstones
It’s also available in all good bookstores and on Amazon.
If you have read it and are eager for the next in the Frankie Sheehan series, you can pre-order The Killer in Me here: The Killer in Me
Follow on Twitter: @LivKiernan