I planned the first few 15,000 words, wrote them. Then planned the next bit, wrote it. Rinse and repeat until I reached the last few post it note scenes last weekend. It's currently 67000 words or so.
And here's where the wheels fell off my plan. I'm at the difficult final quarter to a third of my work in progress, currently called, Love U More, after the dance song by Sunscreem from the nineties. On Monday I sat with post it notes, paper and pencil (what I usually use to plan) and *nothing*. I realised the very rough plan I had when I sketched the whole story out on 2 pieces of paper now doesn't work, not for what I've written, not for the story I now know it is going to be. I stared at the original plan and nothing new came to me.
I'm hoping the genius, or whatever it is comes to join me when I turn up to write at the weekend. Himself is away and I'm home alone and planned to have a one man write-in. Or not.
Well, that's enough blabbering on about not writing, so what is the story actually about?
Set in the mid nineties in London and Ibiza. Tom and Paul meet through a shared love of dance music. Tom's mum is a slightly too liberal ex-hippie from the seventies. Paul's mum lives her life as if she's stepped into a Jackie Collins novel. It's about thinking you've found yourself and ending up losing part of yourself. It has orbital parties – last minute parties in fields near the M25 orbital round London. People used to meet in service stations and drive off in convoy when found out, via pirate radio station, the secret location of the party.
It will have a happy ending, as I love a happy ending, I've just not quite yet worked out how that's going to be!
So in the meantime, here's a selection of songs, I've used as a sort of mood board for the story. I hope you can grab a coffee / tea / gin and tonic, sit back and enjoy them.
Love U More by Sunscreem – covered by Steps on their first album in the late nineties, but this is the original trancey and much more serious version. It's about how you'll do anything but you can't love someone more than you do. I thought it was a good representation of the main romance in the story.
For An Angel by Paul Van Dyk – this was everywhere when I was going clubbing and it's just come out when the story is set. It is a classic and has been re-released numberous times. Wave your hands in the air like you just don't care!
Children by Robert Miles – another classic from this period. Not quite as wavey-hands-in-the-air as Paul Van Dyk but worth a listen anyway.
Chicane – Poppiholla – strictly speaking this is later than the story is set, but I've written almost the whole story while listening to my Chicane back cataloguue on random as it's perfect to write as it's almost without lyrics and it gets me in the clubbing mood for the frantic, chaos in the story. You'll recognise it from the end of every reality TV show / mission show when they reach the end and they succeed. It's a sample of Sigur Ros. And it is perfection.
Love Story by Taylor Swift – I DON'T CARE IF YOU DISLIKE HER, I LOVE HER AND I LOVE HER SONGS. Wrong time period, but whatevs. This is a romantic love story, and this song is perfect shmaltzy, cheesy teenager romantic dream. That it all.
I wanted to set the story in the recent past, but during a time when people didn't have mobile phones, so they could 'disappear' more easily than they can now.
“Nobody had mobile phones so there was nothing else to do but live in the moment.” – Dave Swindells photographer who took these pics and more.
Wish me luck for the rest of the story to come to me soon-ish…
Liam Livings xx