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After a sabbatical from novel-writing (I’ve been playing with scripts for the last few years), I have worked on The Third Rule for the last three months solidly, to the exclusion of everything else except food and sleep – and only if absolutely necessary; that’s every evening after work, all day whenever I’m lucky enough to have a day off – usually up to sixteen hours a day – and any other time I can squeeze in more than an hour or so. And I’ve been thinking about plot and character all the times in between; while driving, in the shower, pre-slumber, post-slumber.

And now finally, it’s finished; the first editing process is complete.

I tried to hang onto it for another day, making tweaks here and there, but when it’s done, it’s done. I’ve sent it off to a couple of very thorough and very clever (much cleverer than I) readers, and no doubt it will come back in a month or so with lots of pretty red pen all over it, and the work will temporarily begin again.

But for now…

How very peculiar. I feel very empty. Anticlimactic. I suppose it’s a little like waving the kids off for the last time as they fly the nest. I dunno, maybe not.

It’s four-thirty on my day off, and usually I’d be rattling the keyboard, but I’ve been sitting here at my desk looking out of the window (normally the blind is drawn to save me from distraction) for almost an hour pondering this uncanny, and not entirely comfortable, emptiness.

I have other books that I really should be working on, but I told myself I would have the rest of the day off, a rare luxury I’d been anticipating. But now I’m not so sure it is a luxury. Indeed, I fired up the computer especially to write this, especially to feel as though I was creating something. How very sad.

How very peculiar.

Now what?