Exposed – the book that very nearly wasn’t.

Exposed took a long time to write for several reasons. I started it way back in October 2019, but I had a deadline for a Christmas book so I had to stop. Then I’d agreed to write a vampire short story for an anthology. Then I had the EagerBoyz book 2 on pre-order which ended up a lot longer than it was supposed to be (story of my life) and then it was a Valentine freebie short story that I needed to write. Anyway, you get the picture. So between October and February I only managed to write about 20 000 words of it. None of these are the reasons it nearly didn’t exist though.

March came, and yay, I could actually get on with writing it and I wrote another 25k. And then disaster struck, my laptop died and I couldn’t even get it to switch on, never mind access the files. I hadn’t backed up my recent work on this book and I was faced with those words being gone forever. For those people that have read Exposed, it was basically the whole section between arriving at Jim’s bunker and jumping off the train. I realised something in that twenty-four hours: that I didn’t think I could rewrite those words. I’m a perfectionist and I would have been too intent on trying to get the words the same, too hung up on them not being as good that I just don’t think I could have attempted it. So there you go if I hadn’t (eventually) been able to get back into that laptop after trying a hundred different things, I don’t think this book would ever have been finished. And then of course there was the fact it ended up really really long – the length of 2 books. So yeah, I definitely think I should celebrate this book existing.

I’m terrible at knowing where book ideas came from. But for this one, I actually do know. It was basically influenced by three films. The first one was Terminator which is why it was referenced in the book and it was influenced by the bit just prior to the love scene between Sarah Connor and Kyle Reese where he’s all business and survival and she’s trying to make jokes about what a fun upbringing they had when they’re trying to put some explosives together. Minority report influenced the DTP, except they didn’t have rocket packs, thank God, and there was no precognitive abilities. And the third was an obscure gay film called Boy Culture where I always liked that the character was called X – although he was a gay hustler who refused to have sex that wasn’t for money, not a knife-wielding assassin.

Will I revisit this world? Possibly. I’d quite like to know Bartholomew’s story. I’d quite like to find out what Psyche gets up to when he’s not running around for good old Granny Talon (God knows where that name came from) and I imagine there might be a couple of star-crossed lovers in the heart of the DTP who maybe don’t want to be there. I guess time will tell whether it happens.

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