Cold Comfort, first draft finished

19 April 2010

The manuscript of Cold Comfort is finished as it’s going to be for a while. A little over a year ago, while I was still working on the final drafts of Frozen Assets, the day job took me to the Faroe Islands, a truly delightful place to visit, but that’s another story.

Arriving from Gatwick in plenty of time to get my Sunday morning connection for the flight to Tórshavn, there was an ominous announcement that Atlantic Airways were experiencing some extensive delays due to severe weather – and there might be flights that evening. With the best part of twelve hours to kill at Kåstrup and not a lot to do, I bought a magnificent A4 hardback notebook in the airport bookshop and sat down over a generous plate of pasta and a large beer.
Over those twelve hours, with a few breaks to wander the airport shops and bars, and to chat to a few acquaintances – Kåstrup’s not a big airport and there were a few flights coming in from Iceland – I sat and mapped out most of the characters and events of Cold Comfort.

By the time I reached the comfort of Hotel Hafnia in Tórshavn, I knew roughly where it was going. Since then, Cold Comfort hasn’t been far away and it’s been worked on in fits and starts, been through plenty of changes and over the last few weeks the chainsaw has been wielded to hack away a lot of the branches that were leading nowhere.

Now it’s been parcelled up and sent away for the publisher to look over.

In the meantime, a few plans and outlines have been laid down for a third story featuring Gunnhildur and her posse of colleagues and villains. Frozen Assets took place around the south coast and the fictional-but-real village of Hvalvík. Cold Comfort is a Reykjavík story. But 3 will see Gunnhildur packed off home to her roots and the wild western fjords without a sniff of a coffee bar and where petrol stations are two hundred kilometres apart.

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