What not to do when writing a novel…

This is the brilliant website that I found whilst I was doing my research for a profile for the Port Eliot Festival.  Check it out it’s great.


Now here is where I have ickle pickle confession to make.  The above statement may sounds worthy, nay even clever, hey, I was working.  But this is only half the story.  I was, in fact, practising work avoidance, albeit cleverly disguised.  I was doing something I would rather be doing, rather than actually doing the thing I should be doing.  If you know what I mean.  Got it?  So whilst I was feeling all smug that I had research and written my profiles (TWO hasten I has to add – this was extreme work avoidance) I should have been writing my novel.  Well just the plan actually. It’s got to be done by Tuesday and if it’s not I’m in trouble.

Not ‘kick me off the course’ trouble, but ‘you’ve got 10 weeks to write 30,000 words’ trouble.  You see what I mean?  It goes well for a bit and then I get distracted.

For example, when I (or one of my characters) is faced with a particularly pithy dilemma (or conflict as we novelists call it), I’ll think ‘I wonder what’s happening in the world today?’ Saying to myself that, after all, if I am to be a writer, I must be abreast of current affairs.  Hey presto, this now gives me carte blanche to spend half an hour surfing the internet looking at ‘news’ stories, but usually being waylaid by the horoscopes instead (always hideously inaccurate I find, so even more of a waste of time).

See look what’s happened here.   This very moment in fact.  See it has happened without me even realising it!  I was writing my plan and then thought I had to share my thoughts with everyone.  I’ve already tweeted that it’s a lovely sunny day, my hyacinths smell lovely and spring has arrived in Cornwall.

I’m also due to watch the rugby at 5 so I’d better get my skates on…work avoidance is *so* time consuming….


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