Swindon didn’t live up to its advance publicity – a pretty little spot around the station that compared well with the concrete jungle of Basingstoke, nice hotel, interesting souffle-like quiche in nearby restaurant – but rushing down there for a day’s workshop and back on the last train on Monday evening has left me very tired for most of the week. This morning (Saturday) got off to a shaky start when one of the cats, who had spent the night curled up in the middle of the pillow preventing me from putting my head anywhere comfortable, walked to and fro across my head several times, miaowing and randomly sticking his claws into my scalp. I think he was possibly showing extreme affection but that’s debatable.
I hope to relax over this weekend, using the word ‘relax’ loosely as it includes crossing town to source props for the Fringe show, writing at least one extra chapter for my current novel, cleaning the house from top to bottom (the eternal optimist) and getting rid of some of our recycling mountain.
I was going to say something about carrying out ruthless surgery on the novel and then grafting some of the discarded chapters back on to it, but I think that metaphor is probably in bad taste. ‘Unfortunately’ I woke up one morning during the week with an idea of how to start my next planned novel, working title ‘Pitkirtly VIII’. I don’t think I can carry around any more writing ideas in my head at the moment. I now have two novels, three novellas and one vague cloud of inspiration that may turn into a novel, a novella, a short story or nothing, on my mind. I need to get something finished soon, otherwise my head will resemble a cupboard I used to have in my room as a teenager, which was stuffed with unfinished stories in various notebooks. When I say ‘unfinished’ some of them were only just started. Even approaching that kind of situation gives me the uneasy feeling that my life is turning full circle.