A Very Wordy Christmas

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It’s Christmas Eve and, in a rare and uncharacteristic fit of rest I am off work from now right through ’til January 6th. I’m looking forward to sleeping a lot, watching more than my fair share of Agatha Christie adaptations and reading my way through a towering stack of paperback novels, (Dear Santa, if you’re still dithering about what to deliver please send the new Donna Tartt and a ton of George Saunders, I take back everything I said about being content with an ice cream scoop).

However, I’ve also set myself the challenge of crunching my way through around 20,000 words of the new novel, Roundabouts. I have a notebook full of scribbles, a couple of characters I’m already starting to fall in love with and a fair idea of where I’m heading but right now, a full novel by the end of November feels like Everest. I’m currently sitting at 7,500 words and am pretty content with what I’ve got so far but am hoping the wee break will give me a chance to make a chapter by chapter outline and plot out the next few months of writing.

When people have asked me what I plan to do with my holidays and I say, “write 20,000 words of a novel,” they look horrified and insist that I really should be giving myself a rest but I know that all you full time working/spare time writers will understand me when I say that I’ve been looking forward to unadulterated writing time for weeks and weeks. Everyone has their own way of putting their feet up and recharging and mine usually involves words. I hope you’re having a wonderful Christmas this week and resting in your own peculiar way.


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