It’s 5.30 am and I’m giving myself the luxury of a sleep in.
For the past few months I’ve been getting up at 5am and writing til 6 before having to go off and do the normal stuff you do before going to work. Other times I’d write on the weekend or on my regular Fridays off.
Now that I have finished the draft manuscript for Turning Inside Out – What if everything we’ve been taught about life is wrong, I can sleep in.
Unlike the last book, Dying to Know, where I went off to a Greek island to start writing it, most of this new book was written very unglamorously at the kitchen table or either at my desk in my home office.
I secretly wanted to have a writing studio in a forest next to a babbling brook or a beach shack with sweeping views over a turquoise bay where between chapters I’d dip my toes in the cool water.
But no, I had the kitchen table and in truth I was fine with it. The book needed to be written and I needed to just get on with it and write the bloody thing.
Now, I can take a breath, spend time with my partner, Andy, (who chooses to write propped up in bed) and get back into a normal routine.
Not for long.
After the manuscript comes back from the publisher with the suggested changes, its then back into writing mode and making sure it all makes sense. And then it’s onto the next book and then the next.
I love writing and creating books. I love drawing my Frog and the Well cartoons. I love pushing the mundane aside to enter a world that’s way more interesting than game shows, crossword puzzles and cat memes. And if it means getting up at 5am when it’s still pitch black, cold and wet in the dark of winter, then I’m happy to do it.
There’s something mildly romantic about it, I know that sounds strange but it’s the idea that I can be a working writer, whilst still doing all the other things that life demands of me. Even if it’s just for an hour in the morning then I’ve achieved something. Andy does the same, sitting up in bed punching out a poem or adding to his short story while I’m in the office (The kitchen table is reserved for Fridays and weekends) tapping out another chapter or idea.
It’s about chip, chip, chipping away and in the end it’ll all add up to something, even if you don’t know what it is when you start.