In the weeks following publication of my debut novel Secrets, I wasn’t sure what to do next. Having invested considerable time in writing Secrets, an adult psychological thriller, I couldn’t imagine completing an entirely new novel. It seemed impossible.
Then, about a couple of months later, I started a story about a fourteen-year-old boy who goes looking for his father shortly after his mother’s new boyfriend moves into their Manchester flat. Although the central character EggHead doesn’t consciously link the two, his mistrust of his mother’s boyfriend, along with his natural father’s rejection of him, leads him to taking a number of dangerous risks, which eventually rebound and result in him going into care. Three years later, he emerges in a remote coastal resort off the North Sea, cut off from the rest of the family and in considerable danger. The novel tackles the theme of bullying and addresses what can happen when the recipient of the bullying loses control and retaliates…
I completed EggHead in about nine months and found that previous writing experience with my debut novel helped when it came to structure and planning. I enjoyed writing from an adolescent viewpoint, and have been informed that the voice is strong and authentic. However, I found the writing process draining at times, particularly when it came to depicting the bleak and lonely coastal surroundings, and I would sometimes consider abandoning the story. I self-published EggHead at the end of last year, and have just completed a new novel for Young Adults. It feels strange to be going through the polishing stages again so soon after EggHead.
My debut novel Secrets by Lawrence Estrey is available from Amazon in paperback and e-book.