I was asked the other day how Delilah is. I replied she is not very happy, she has been stuck on my desktop for almost a year and is desperate to break free. Delilah is the main character in a series that I am writing. So far, I have published two stories. There is the unpublished one I mentioned and two other stories that swirl through my head intermittently, waiting to be written.
It is Delilah Dusticle and the Cursed Tempest that is impatiently sitting on my computer. The story is done and has even been sent to a beta reader. But for some reason the project stalled. Holidays, illness, work, you name it all happened, along with some self-induced procrastination. I have now tried to kick start the process of publishing again, by sending it to Bridget Gevaux at ABC Proofreading for a proper grammar health check. Also, six out sixteen illustrations are done, so I am hoping for an April or May release. Fingers crossed.
In the meantime, I am now pushing myself to write something new. I have been lulled into not writing stories, which worries me. I think writing is like a muscle, if you stop writing, your muscle begins to weaken. But what should I write about? My ideas in the past have come from everyday things. Delilah Dusticle came from a puff of dust, Eliza Bluebell from my love cafes and tearooms and A Fairy Extraordinary Christmas Story came from helping my Mum bring the decorations from the attic.
There is one idea I have. A few years ago I bought a little hedgehog soft toy. I am not a cuddly toy type of person, so this was unusual behaviour for me. It was just so sweet. Like a child, I have even given him a name. I have called him Igelkott (sounds like eaglekott), which is hedgehog in Swedish.
Here is Igelkott.
I have been considering writing a story about him for a while and a beautiful snowfall in January has given me a plot idea.
Here is that snowfall from January.
There, in my mind, Igelkott’s tale swirls around along with Delilah’s new adventure in London. I really need to sit down and write and get these ideas out. I need to stop procrastinating. I will just have to make myself do it. Off I go then. Or perhaps I will rearrange my sock draw?
A.J. York is a middle grade and children's writer. Author of Delilah Dusticle, Eliza Bluebell and A Fairy Extraordinary Christmas Story. A.J York has a Swedish and British background and currently lives in Gothenburg, Sweden.