It’s hard work, writing a book. Not coal miner hard or astronaut hard, but it requires some skill, a whole lot of work and, mostly, mental time on task. Writing a series is even harder. To date, through three Jack Emery novels and a prequel novella I’ve punched out around 250,000 words in the series.
That means you want to be sharp and alert while writing, right? Wrong! I do some of my best work when I’ve got a beer or a whisky in hand, but there’s some rules to follow and mistakes to avoid. This was the topic of my previous post on For The Love of Books and Alcohol – rules to write and drink by.
A while ago Danielle asked me to take a challenge: to write for a month without drinking. I agreed, I started to write the post and by day three I’d failed. I downed one beer and the challenge was over. I didn’t fight it, but instead embraced it and punched out some of the best scenes in my next novel – Nations Divided – released on 10 December.
This site is one of my favourites on the web, because it deals with two of my favourite things. The fact that Jack is a guy who likes a drink as well makes this something of a home on the web, as well, and I can’t thank FTLOBAA enough for providing that home and some great reviews.
Part of the deal with failing the challenge was a promise to Danielle that, once I’d finished the book and the series (for now), I’d let her know what the celebratory selection was. It’s perfect, actually, because I can’t think of any better place to raise a glass for my erstwhile hero, who’s going away for a while on a well earned break, than here.
It’s a hard thing, letting go of a character I’ve written and worked with for the better part of four years. Jack will be back, but he’s like an old friend going on a long vacation. Knowing there will be a return doesn’t make the loss any easier. Though, truth be told, he’s probably glad to be free of me for a while. I can pick on some other people now.
So here’s to you, Jack Emery. I’ve been with you for four years, beaten you up, blown you up, tortured you, stabbed you, killed your loved ones and generally made sure you had an unpleasant time. On the other hand, you’ve become pretty harcore under my tutelage, so we’ll call it even.
You have earned a break, though, so I’ve got my Old Fashioned ready to go. My version of choice?
An ice ball
A sliver of orange peel
Here’s to you, Jack!
When he’s not writing, Steve keeps food and flat whites on the table working for the man. He enjoys beer, whisky, sports and dreaming up ever more elaborate conspiracy theories to write about.
He has a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Political Science and History. His honors thesis was on the topic of global terrorism. He has traveled extensively through Europe, the United States and Asia.