Which was where I made my first good decision. I didn't think about the story for the entire three weeks that I was away. Instead I took a break, enjoyed my trip and lived in the moment. When I got back to the UK I was raring to write, and produced the Secrets of a Courtesan in a week. It was the third incarnation of this particular story, different again, but with some deep conflict, slightly flawed characters, still some sparkling dialogue (I hope!) and lots of hot and sensual romance.
Maybe one day I will use the first version of the story in my creative writing classes as an example of how every writer can make mistakes regardless of how long they've been writing or how many books they've written (I'm assuming here, of course, that I'm not the only person this has happened to, but please put me right if that assumption is incorrect!) I'm a great believer in the idea that you should follow your writing instinct, and from now on I'll be listening more closely to mine. In the meantime I think I'll just look at the cover of The Secrets of a Courtesan - and enjoy the happy ending!