Over the past few months, after hanging out on various writing forums, I have taken on board the very sound advice that, while you’re putting your first project to bed, it’s always useful to have an open eye and mind for the next one. As I’m currently waiting to pick up the hard copy of the current finished draft of Far From the Tree until next week (when the Red Pen of Doom™ will come into play with a vengeance!), I’m looking ahead to the next novel in the Little Somerby series.
At the moment, I’m working chronologically, so I’ve put the idea of the FFTT ‘prequel’ on hold. I still want to tell that story, but I’m toying with how to tell it best. So the second novel picks up roughly a year after the end of FFTT. I’ve written the first 1,000 words already, and I have a fair idea of what’ll happen, although I haven’t done an actual outline, yet!
I don’t think it will come as a complete surprise to anyone who’s been following my writing adventures that the second Little Somerby novel will focus on Jonathan Carter, younger brother to Matthew and reformed (well, reforming!) cad. Although I don’t have a title, yet, I do have two main characters and a host of others in supporting roles. Matthew and Anna do make the odd cameo, too ;).
So, here’s the rough (and very vague) premise.
When Caroline Hemingway inherits a sum of money from her eccentric and much loved Great Aunt Elsie, she realises that it is the break she needs to shake up her life. After a riotous weekend in the country with her former sister in law Anna, she decides to take the plunge and buy her own business. Little does she know that, in addition to learning a whole new set of skills, she will also have to learn the subtle arts of taming and domesticating Jonathan Carter, younger brother and co-director of the local cider business. But Jonathan’s always been an alley cat; will Caroline be the woman who ends his wanderings and gives him a home for life, or will she just end up the next in the long line of Jonathan’s cast offs? With a little help from Anna, can Caroline take her business, and Jonathan, in hand, and give herself the happily ever after she’s always secretly wanted, or is she biting off more than she can chew?
Oddly, I’ve not written a word about Caroline, yet, but I have realised there’ll be a birth, a death and an almost marriage in the book! I’m quite looking forward to writing a quite different romance to Anna and Matthew’s – and I have the feeling I’m going to be pushing my own boundaries with the love scenes; after all, Jonathan’s been around the block a fair few times, and he has a few tricks up his sleeve ;). I’ll leave you with two songs that sum up the protagonists for the next novel…