Writing a sequel to Danger at Mellin Cove, the book that launched my fiction writing career in the first place, was always going to be a labour of love.
I also thought, mistakenly as it happens, that it would be a fairly easy project. After all, in my mind I knew the setting well – the wild Cornish seas that crashed into Mellin Cove, and the fleet of twin-masted fishing luggers in the small harbour. I could see Kit St Neot’s Mellin Hall towering over the scene from high on the cliffs, and Jem and Hedra’s cottage, along the winding path to Gribble Farm.
In the first book, readers engaged with Jem and Hedra’s love story as she was cast from joy to despair in an emotional rollercoaster of danger, smuggling and intrigue.
A Mysterious Heroine
Book Two had to be more than equally exciting. It had to be better! There would still be danger and intrigue, but also secrets and jealousy – and Dewi, a mysterious new heroine who comes from the sea, and turns Kit’s organised life upside down.
Mistress of Mellin Cove would be a tale of sailing ships and wreckers, family loyalties and betrayals, and Dewi’s desperate plight to discover her past.
The new novel would also be almost twice as long as Danger at Mellin Cove, which was originally written as a 30,000 word Pocket Novel – DC Thomson’s specified wordcount for a My Weekly PN back then.
With all this in mind I began to plot my story and create a synopsis. I always do this before I start writing because it provides a framework for everything that comes after. I don’t necessarily adhere to it. Nothing is set in stone. As I worked through the many twists and turns of plot, place names, even some character names, changed. Weak scenes were deleted, stronger ones added, but I always had to know where the whole thing was heading.
At the moment it’s heading to a conclusion, and I have only a few thousand more words to write before the first draft is complete. I’ve edited a fair bit as I’ve gone along, and there is a long list in my notebook of other things that need further attention. All this will happen in the first major edit and the subsequent drafts. Unusually for me, I am really looking forward to this next stage.
The new cover is all ready and looking good, but you won’t be seeing that until publication day, in April.
Let’s hope my lovely readers enjoy Mistress of Mellin Cove as much as I have loved writing it.
Have a great week everyone, Rx