Sometimes it's a good thing, sometimes it's a pain in the bum cheeks. But it usually seems like a good idea at the time. For Book Number The Fourth I've changed the way I work. For a start I'm writing the whole thing as one big file, rather than one little file per chapter. Now, on the face of it, that shouldn't change anything, right? It's the same story, just in one big chunk, rather than lots of little ones. Wrong: it makes it very different. When I was writing individual chapter files they always seemed to end up about 10 pages long. Don't know why, that was just how long chapters were. Now that I'm doing it all in a big clump, the chapter length is all over the shop.

Another thing I've changed is the plan. I've got my mindmap thing up on the whiteboard, but now there's a weird 'rolling lookout' thing down one side, which is basically what's about to happen in the timeline. Never done that before either.

Plus I'm trying some new ways of actually telling the story. I thought my ninja editors from HarperCollins would throw a squeaky when they saw what I was planning on doing, but they actually like it. It's a lot more work on my part, but it's kinda fun at the same time. So that's OK.

And I'm trying to change the way I work as well. Last year it was nose to the grindstone: arse in the chair at 08:30 in the morning and bang head off desk till She Who Must Be Used As An Excuse For Indolence comes home from work. If the words aren't coming, it's because YOU'RE NOT TRYING HARD ENOUGH! *ahem* This time I'm splitting the day. Some work in the morning, some pottering about at midday-ish, some more work in the afternoon. So far it seems to be working -- I'm getting a bit more done this time than last. Plus I may actually get a life outside of this study. Which would be nice.

"Ah, yes," you say, "it's all very well telling us you're sodding about with things, but is the new book any good?"

Haven't got a sodding clue. And I probably never will. I still don't know if BROKEN SKIN sucks nun's buttocks or not, and it's out in three months.

Something else that's changed is the blog: Blogger forcibly upgraded me a couple of days ago and now stuff doesn't line up anymore. I should probably get round to fixing it at some point. But I probably won't.