I'm so excited that my new book HIDDEN will be out in the UK on July 31 and in the US on November 1. I hope to be able to share the cover with you soon. But in the meantime, I'm working on the second book in the series, which is due at the end of August.
When my agent asked if that deadline was possible, it was before Christmas, I did the math, and said, sure. And then I started the book. And started it again. And started it again. Whatever I wrote just wasn't working. Finally, after many mis-starts, I finally had a first chapter I was happy with, a launching point for the book.
It's hard writing a sequel to a book that wasn't supposed to have one. But the more I'm writing, the more I realize that Nicole's story isn't entirely over yet, and I'm glad that Kate, my new editor at Severn House, saw that.
However, I did leave Nicole in a place that is so remote, I couldn't figure out how to get her out. Because get her out, I felt I had to do.
At least at first.
Nicole is in Quebec. A beautiful place, a place I've loved to visit. And while it is remote, I'm discovering that she needs to stay there for a while. Maybe even through the whole book (although I'm only 50 pages in, so that can change, too).
Even though I've been there, it's been a while, so I hunted down the travel pieces I wrote for the New Haven Register after our trips there. As I read them, they brought me back, and I could close my eyes and see the mountains edging up to the St. Lawrence, see the pinks and oranges of the sunrises on Ile-aux-Coudres, still smell the exhaust of the car as it struggled up the incline after getting off the ferry going back to Baie-Saint-Paul. Since I'm probably not going to get to Quebec again before I finish the book, I have to rely on my words and memories from before.
I believe setting is a huge part of every book. It is a character in and of itself, and I tried hard to bring Block Island alive in HIDDEN. As I hope I can bring Quebec and the Charlevoix region alive in this second book.
Are you drawn to books with a strong sense of place?