Finally. After a delay of CWG proportions, I have just completed the first draft of Dork 2. It happened approximately 5 hours ago. For now I am calling it D2D1. The version you will see in ex-tree/Kindle/iPad/Xoom/modern-dance format will most probably be D2D3. Next the missus will scan the whole thing. Meanwhile I will clean out odds and ends like the author's note, acknowledgements, and making character names and proper nouns consistent. The end result, D2D2, will then go to Penguin. Who will then send feedback. Which I will incorporate into D2D3. Which will go to press.
I know all this sounds terribly boring. But in reality it is spectacularly boring. But it must be done. Personally I am a believer in freestyle spelling. But many readers get very upset and send emails. Which I would like to avoid this time round. So more attention will be paid to grammar and niggling things like tense shifts. (D1 was full of horrendous tense shift things. Did you noticed it?)
D2 carries on a few months after D1 and takes place almost completely in London. This is not because I've been living here of late. It was always planned like that, with D3 happening back in India. But there is really very little London in it. (Unless lots of London will make you buy the book. In which case it is brimming with London.) But it was a pleasant coincidence to write of the same city you are typing in.
Our plan, ever since Penguin and I first discussed it in mid-2008, has been to tell Robin's story in three books, with the ultimate aim being to make him CEO by Book 3. That plan is proceeding well. Otherwise significant changes have been made from my initial plan for the book. There was too much material in the CDs I found under the sink. So I had to cut and chop and shift things a bit. (Ahem.)
Anyway I won't bore you with all those things right now. There is plenty of time for that. Also I need to leave some gossip for marketing no?
Instead let me share some data points that will, I hope, whet your appetite:
- D2D1 is currently 62770 words long. That will increase by another 2000 words by the time D2D3 is finished.
- That should translate to approximately 300 pages or so in print. But this is fully variable.
- Most of the book was written using Scrivener on a desktop and a laptop.
- A Dropbox account was used to sync the project between both machines.
- The whole things took around 5 months to write. But most of the writing happened in the last two weeks.
- Writing was usually done to background music by Earl Klugh, Fourplay, George Benson and this wonderful mix of Rainymood and The Fragrance of Dark Coffee. Anything with lyrics completely distracts me. So does anything that is too fast, too slow and too complicated. Smooth Jazz seems to be working of late.
- During the writing process I read the following: A history of the Popes, a biography of Paul Dirac, The Eye of the Red Tsar and, as I got closer to the deadline, Michael Palin's Around The World in 80 Days. Reading humour books keep me cheerful. But I am paranoid about being too influenced by what I am reading. Palin's travel non-fiction is most satisfying without leaking into Robin's head. Now I am reading Jo Nesbo's Nemesis.
- I write entirely in 14-point Georgia font. Have been doing so for 4 or 5 years now.
- In order to help me focus I removed a bunch of apps from my computers, and stayed off updating Twitter for two weeks. Whenever I wanted a break I played Stick Cricket on the iPhone.
- It will take at least 6 months from now till release date. Which means November-ish maybe? I hope so
- I am thinking of doing something online as a bonus track, if you will, for the book.
- The next project that is already beginning to ferment in the brain is a crime novel. (Yes, I know you are going to make Sreesanth-bowling jokes.) But no, seriously. A crime novel has been obsessing the mind for months. I have written just a little bit. Why not? You live only one life.
- Otherwise life carries on as usual. Mint, Cricinfo, Twitter and now a little Facebook.
- I intend to spend the next two weeks doing nothing but watch cricket, eat, cycle a little bit, read and blog/tweet/poke.
What else? Nothing much.
Enough about me. You tell me. What is up?