This weekend sees me trek north to Gretna Green for the annual Crime & Publishment weekend. It’s two and a half days of writing course with sessions run by various tutors from the crime fiction world, plus a chance to chat and socialise with other crime writers, plus a chance to pitch work to a publisher and/or agent on the last day. I’ve been for the last two years and it’s been brilliant – as much for the networking and friendships made as for the information gleaned.
This year, we have homework. A brief questionnaire from one of the tutors, and a quick run-through of the novella I’m hoping to pitch. I was expecting the latter to be really hard work. I wrote ‘Gravy Train’ in a matter of weeks early last year, then tossed the file onto a shelf and have hardly had time to look at it since. Usually when that happens I have to more-or-less rewrite the book because it’s such a mess, with loose ends, contradictions, and bits that just trail off. This time, though, it hardly seems to need anything. A few typos here and there, a few minor additions to clarify, explain or describe things better, and hey presto! I’m actually happy enough with it that I could submit it to a publisher tomorrow.
If only all my books could be as accommodating as that!