So. You finished your book? [casual tone to hide true thought: About time: you have damn all else to do and how can a mere YA novel take that long?]
Yes. Well, there’ll be more edits when my editor sends it back to me – she says it’s not quite there yet [careless tone to pretend am totally fine with that] but for the moment, yes, all done.
So what happens now? Are you taking the summer off [not that you deserve it]?
No. I’ve started a new book.
What – already? So it must be a series? [God, they really do just churn them out.]
No. It’s totally different.
How can you have another idea already? [Still, it’s only YA; isn’t it all the same book?]
Oh, I’ve had this story in my head since December. I’ve had an outline since March. The characters have been talking in my head for ages.
That’s a bit weird. [More than a bit.]
Not to me. That’s kind of what I do. You know, being a writer and all.
Ah – so you must have a really tight deadline? Is it one of those three-book-deal thingies? [impressed tone: maybe she is a real writer after all.]
I wish. No, I haven't got a contract. I'm writing it on spec.
What, you still have to do that, even when you’ve had a few books published and they’ve done OK?
So you could take the summer off if you wanted? Nobody is actually waiting for this book? You’re just kind of – hoping? [oh dear; that's a bit sad.]
Well, I have a deadline for myself. I suppose the characters in the story after that would be a bit pissed off if I kept them waiting round for too long.
That’s definitely weird.
Maybe. Now, I have to go and write this book. Have a good summer.