1 July 2019

Phoebe Rising

I have at last finished writing this novel. It is the longest and one of the most ambitious I have ever attempted. The process began with only a vague idea (of a girl arriving on the ferry from France) and grew from there, so it qualifies as what they call a ‘pantser’, plotted by the seat of the author’s pants rather than from a synopsis.

The period is the early 1960s, a rather simpler time and one to which the very English flavour of the piece is suited. The setting is Kent, on the archetypal white cliffs around Dover, but the village of Pelling-on-Sea is imaginary, combining elements of a number of English seaside resorts.

The central story is about the struggle a sensitive little English girl, Phoebe, undergoes to recover from a disastrous upbringing among the super-wealthy in the South of France. Her mother dies when she is seventeen and Phoebe returns to England to meet, and live with, the father she has not seen or heard from for nearly nine years.

The extent is 141,000 words, and you can read the first chapter here.


Moe The Cat said...


Maybe more "pantsers" in the future? This was wonderful.

Richard Herley said...

Thanks, Moe. Much appreciated!