As 14 March 2018 approaches, I look back in amazement at Under the African Sun and the journey it has taken. 2017 was my year as a deer in the headlights. I am only really on solid ground now and my sequel has been circling its own tail for far too long. I’ve learnt so many lessons, made countless mistakes, enjoyed unexpected successes and now I am ready to tackle the sequel properly.
Did I follow the same writing process as before? I planned to…but no, not at all. My sequel is already rebelling and characters are selfishly ignoring my carefully mapped beatsheet. Everything that worked for me last time around, is just not falling into place this time. So will I finish it? You’re damn right I will. We’ll find a way to work together, even if I have to kick a character out 🙂 But trust me, it won’t be Boetie. He’s simply determined to stay in the story. And the person you think he’s based on ? Well, he’s not. He’s probably going to remain my secret forever. But as Chris in AFrican Sun says, “How long is forever?”
I can hardly believe it all happened over a year ago!
CactusRainPublishing and Nadine Laman, are working their magic in Arizona, as we speak. Their meticulous editing and attention to detail bring a lump to my throat. I am forever grateful that the name and Logo popped out and grabbed me, when I was on the search for a suitable publisher. Thank you, thank you, thank you CactusRain!
Under the African Sun is almost ready to make its entrance. To say I am excited is the understatement of the year. My journey has been a massive learning curve and one which I have undertaken with amazing mentors, Jo-Anne Richards and Richard Beynon, from allaboutwritingcourses.com Their guidance and expertise, not to mention endless patience and humour, have been with me every step of the way.
So many old and new friends have encouraged me too. Some of them have even picked me up off the floor and given me a kick up the butt! Whispers of distant past as well as recent experiences, weave their way through the story (which is fiction) and Rhodes University, 1976 is as clear in my mind today, as it was all those turbulent years ago. I hold the memory of many special friends from those times and if you were there, you are in the story in one way or another. Some of you have left our special tip of Africa for new homes and some have passed on way too soon. But for me, you live in a magical swirl of memory that is enclosed in my heart forever.
I never write about places I haven’t been to. But Pretoria, Grahamstown, Louis Trichardt, Cape Town and even Venice, inspired the settings for my story. I hope my brushstrokes do these special places justice and stir memories for you all.
When the day arrives and Under the African Sun is ready, I am holding thumbs that those of you who can, will come and join me in celebrating its arrival.
The bubbly is already in the fridge 🙂