Having written and published a couple of novels (one adult psychological thriller, the other teenage socio-economic), I’ve recently completed the draft for a third. Currently, I’m revising along the lines suggested in a professional Editorial Critique – basically, more action, more intensity. The novel falls under the genre of Young Adult Fiction and tells the story of a group of advanced classical pianists, all in their teens. In the novel, the students meet at an International Summer School, but events soon veer out of control. The central protagonist (17) embarks on the studies shortly after narrowly escaping prosecution by the police, and during his week on the course, he struggles to reconcile his former gang mentality with the rich teenagers around him. He also becomes involved with two girls, one of whom presents her own story in alternating third person narratives.
Having trained at music college myself, I can relate to a lot of the musical stuff that goes on. I spent three years at Dartington College of Arts, Totnes, Devon, where I studied for a degree.
In the following section, the central character switches into music student mode. The Editorial Report recommended simplifying these sections and making them more immediate.
After taking a bow, she finished the concert with the Heroic Polonaise by Chopin, leaving the audience on their feet in a standing ovation, cheering and whistling and demanding more. Like, wild. The cameras going crazy. The guy next to me updating his Facebook page. Everyone shouting and clapping, apart from Philippa who sat there, stony-faced and silent. The atmosphere electric. The music alive. I, too, wanted to scream and shout and whistle along with the others. We all belonged. Yeah, and I got that mad feeling as well. You know the one? The type that everyone is supposed to get at these sorts of events…like life’s totally perfect and you’d be happy to die there and then.