I am writing a novel, and I am almost ready to send it to agents and publishers. I have been writing for about eight months. The first two months (August and September) was all dedicated to the novel. But I didn’t do much writing at that time, it was mostly notes and a creative process. Starting October 1st, I have been writing two days a week for about six months.
Today I am presenting a short description of my debut novel to you. I would appreciate it if you leave a comment and tell me what you think.
The name of the book is “The Imitator” (imitatoren in Norwegian).
I am writing the novel in Norwegian. I know the market is a lot bigger for english books, but, I am norwegian and I write norwegian a lot better than english. I want my first novel to be in a language I feel that I control.
It’s a lot harder to explain the novel in English than I thought it would be. But I will do my best.
The story is located in Halden, a small town, in the south of Norway, by the border to Sweden (the town where I live).
Henry, an enormous man with a mental disorder, can’t remember anything from the past. He has been locked up in a mental institution for the past 15 years because of a murder he can’t remember he committed. Due to a severe head injury, he lacks his memory, and his eyes needs to stay in the dark. He has been surrounded by complete darkness for the past 15 years.
The body of the man Henry is believed of killing was never found. Henry keeps talking about the murder as if he is the killer, because that’s what he is dreaming.
Henry’s psychiatrist is the little brother of the missing man. The psychiatrist is doing everything in his power to find out what happened and to find the body of his brother. He decides to try one last thing, and listen to the advice of Asbjorn, Henry’s neighbor in the mental institution.
Asbjorn was a painting teacher at the local high school in Halden. Asbjorn suggests that one of his old students, a former Norwegian olympic gold medalist in swimming, Jonathan Winter, can help Henry remember the past.
Jonathan Winter is an imitator, or at least he was twenty years ago, when Asbjorn was his teacher. Jonathan’s imitation skills will according to Asbjorn help Henry to understand his dreams of killing and will help Henry to remember. According to Asbjorn it’s all about the voices of the past.
Natalja Anikin, is a Russian girl and an illegal immigrant. She has been in Norway for the past 13 years. Natalja Anikin has been hiding since she was 13 years old. Now, at 26, she has just published a book about her life in Norway as a refugee, and how she managed to escape from Russia and travel to Norway. The co-author of the book is celebrity author and filmmaker Oystein Karlsen from Halden, the same town where Henry and Asbjorn lives.
A few days after the release of her book, Natalja Anikin enters an apartment in Oslo. The apartment explodes. The day after the explosion, the co-author of the book, is found dead, naked and painted yellow.
Henry, still locked up, and surrounded by complete darkness is dreaming about the murders before they happen, just like the murder 15 years ago. Now, he shares his next dream; a woman being killed, stripped naked and painted in red. The murder will happen today, and in his dreams Henry is still the killer.
The death of Natalja Anikin and her co-author makes the front page of every newspaper in Norway. The cops don’t know where to start the investigation. Nothing seems to happen until the murder receives the attention of Alf Jakobsen, a former journalist, drug addict, and member of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Remember, this was just a short description. So far, I have written 122,000 words. It’s hard to explain everything in just a few sentences.
I would love to read your opinion. I tried to explain a brief part of the novel, and I did it in English (although the novel is in Norwegian). Hopefully, the novel is a lot better than what it looks like from what you’ve read so far (I promise you that I will do a better job of describing the plot to a publisher) 🙂