sometimes you feel like a nut

The Easter weekend – for which we get two public holidays in the UK – is always a phenomenally productive time for me, writing-wise. With my fiancé and most friends out of town for the holiday, it offers a great excuse to spend the whole day in front of the computer screen, busily tapping away at my latest WIP. Considering my writing always comes easiest between about 11 PM and 2 AM, not having to get up early for work means I can maximize my creative witching hour.

This weekend was no different. The weather was gray and freezing, which alleviated any guilt about spending so many hours indoors, and that the Monday bank holiday coincided with the first day of April’s Camp NaNoWriMo was an extra incentive. I wrote furiously, and accumulated about 5,500 retainable words over three days (which, for my 1k-a-day average, is not a bad result).

This morning, however, as soon as I opened the Word document where I’m drafting the novel, I knew I’d be lucky if I got 30 words today. The story that insisted on being written yesterday has dropped somewhere to the back of my brain, behind work and wedding planning and going to the gym. If I had the time and inclination I could forcibly wrench it back to the front – probably by staring at the screen and plucking out a handful of sentences until my brain shifted gears – but today, I don’t. Today will most likely be a zero word count day. And I’m fine with that, because it’s all part of the process.

Some days characters shout so loudly that any other noise – conversations, television programs – are nothing but an annoying distraction. Other days they’re completely silent, percolating quietly in the background while the next step in their story slowly, slowly takes shape.

Today I’ve taken advantage of the latter to get various other bits of admin finished, because I know that sooner or later the words will be clawing to be written again, and I’ll be unable to focus on anything else. The key is to be at peace with the quiet because you know the noise will return. That’s where I am right now, and I’m trying to enjoy the silence.

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