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Day Forty-Eight: 5K better off

Sometimes the best weekends are the ones where you do nothing but hang out with your family, eat and read books. This has been another learning point for me since I stopped being employed: have a day a week when you do nothing. Now, ‘nothing’ probably still involves childcare, cooking and washing up, but there are ways of making those things run as smoothly as possible. I think we achieved that this weekend. It’s good to have some thinking time, some mellow time. If I had been on my own and literally done nothing but sit in a chair, I think it would have been too much of a shock to the system.

Today I used my scene plan to write the first two scenes of my novel. I have already written opening scenes of the book (of course opening scenes are never really the opening scenes – that all comes out in the wash) but I decided not to look at them. I needed to set off on a slightly different trajectory, and this is a new method for me – following a scene plan – so as simple as possible was best. I definitely suffered from every single thought that goes round a writer’s head from ‘this is crap, give up now’ type thoughts, to more specific ‘I’m not upping the stakes enough, I should rewrite the previous draft’ etc. As usual, I had to face these and do it anyway. I’m 5K in.

Sometimes you have to get the ingredients out – space, time, practice – and trust you’re going to be able to turn them into a cake.

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