In the previous newsletter, I mentioned that the second draft for my standalone psychological thriller was complete. Well, in the time since I last wrote to you, it's undergone some further development... firstly in the form of a name change! That's right, the book previously known as Without a Trace is no more. From this point going forward, its title is...
BURY YOUR SECRETS
Titles are funny things. Sometimes they come to you straight away; other times you wrestle over them for ages, and they remain in flux for almost as long as the writing process itself. I'm definitely more in the latter camp - to date, the only book I've ever written where the title came to me more or less immediately and remained unchanged has been The Library Murders. This book had been going by "Without a Trace" for over a year, but I was never completely satisfied with it. I wanted something that quickly conveyed this particular niche of the genre - something pithy and evocative, something that grabs the reader's attention and leaves them wanting to know more. Bury Your Secrets, which I'm now as certain as I can be is the title under which it will be published, took a while to suggest itself to me, but when it finally did, it immediately felt right.
But let me know what you think! Does it grab you as a title and make you want to find out more? (Bearing in mind that those of you who've been following its development for a while will already have a fairly good idea of what the story is about.)
On a more nuts-and-bolts front, I also completed a read-through of the entire second draft and concluded that, while I was largely happy with it as it stood, a couple of fairly major elements still needed some work. After a lengthy period spent moving the various pieces around on the proverbial chessboard, I now have a revised outline that I think works and have made decent progress on writing the third draft. The changes I've made to the plot aren't particularly numerous, but they DO have knock-on ramifications for the rest of the book, necessitating a fairly significant reworking of a big chunk of the all-important middle section.
Right now, I'm targeting the end of the month to get this draft finished, but we'll see how things go. Past experience has taught me not to make any rash promises when it comes to writing! And then, all being well, the plan is to publish it some time in the summer... but again, as with everything in life, there are no guarantees!