Is novel writing like riding a bike: no matter how long you haven’t done it for it comes back almost instantly? Is it like speaking a foreign language, where it’s very tough at first when you have to do it again after a long break, but with a bit of effort your ability returns quite quickly? Or is it like the pin code for your blasted bank card - don’t use it for a bit and it’s gone completely? I’ll find out soon I guess.
Preparation for the next book at the moment entails a reading list dominated by Japanese history books, and almost all spare time working my way through the list. Re-reading my own novel is part of that, and that’s always an odd experience - a mixture of horror at every comma that seems less than ideally placed, and relief that some of the bits that are supposed to be funny bear at least some relation to that description. The next step is the planning, although with a novel like mine that sticks quite closely to the actual history at least some of the parameters are already in place. A title is not a necessity at this stage, but I have one anyway - “Milligan and the Reluctant Shogun”. Let’s see if that survives the writing process.