18 March 2007


Wurgh. By dint of fuelling myself almost constantly with chocolate, coffee, crisps and beer over the past four days, I've fought my way through to roughly 2,000 words from the end of my novella.

Completing a first draft is scarcely the end of the process, of course, but for me it's the end of the really painful bit, so halle-shagging-lujah. I'm really going to need to clean up my diet once this story's finished, though.

To make up for my otherwise terseness here in the blogosphere, here's the final passage of what could have been Chapter One of The Curse of Odin-Hotep. It's, er, not very long.
Some hours later still, and many fathoms above the scurrying Archivists who were now scouring the Vault from top to bottom, a young woman named Arabella Monteith arrived to begin her day’s work at the British Museum.

Her job for that week was to check the engine-catalogue against the public holdings on display in the Egyptian Gallery, and she had high hopes that – if she performed it well, and continued to perform similarly tedious tasks with equal proficiency and without complaint for the rest of her life – she might conceivably find herself promoted to a junior assistant curatorship before she was fifty.

Reflecting that she might as well begin with one of the vaguely interesting artefacts, Arabella turned the knob on her handheld processing engine, and entered the Gallery as the micro-furnace warmed up.

She gazed at the Museum’s most famous exhibit, sitting proudly on its prominent plinth. Something about it troubled her.

Arabella leaned in, under the sightless eyes of the sarcophagi, to examine the display – then gasped in shock.

The sound echoed around the marbled gallery like the first whisper of stale air from a sealed tomb.

[Pax Britannia series elements © Abaddon Press 2005.]
So, there you have it. When I get the time I imagine I'll put up the whole chapter -- along with the chapter breakdown so you can see where the story would have ended up if there'd, you know, actually been a story -- on my website somewhere.

On the Flickr front, I've discovered you can place your photos on a map, which is mildly exciting. If only I could remember where in Horsham I'd taken the three I took there, then, er, I could put them there.

As I say, more photos -- and indeed more blogging generally -- should follow once this book's out of the way.

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