My sister visited this weekend. “How’s the writing going?”, she said.

“Hmmm…”

She asked the question directly. I’ve been avoiding asking it of myself. She gave me a look. A look between sisters. It reached the neglected writer, who seemed to wave back. I hung my head in shame.

It’s October for goodness sake. Yes, you were derailed, but you’re healing well.

The truth is that I’ve lost the habit. I’ve misplaced it somewhere. I think it’s probably folded up in the wallpaper/post-it notes by the side of my desk. The sum total of Draft Two.

Oh, but there are excuses. Many of them. I was going to start in August. We had visitors. And then Steve asked me to help organise a music festival in aid of local charities. I couldn’t say no, and it took up my spare time. Mike D’Abo came to our little village to sing in a tent! It was awesome!

Then I was going to start in September, but Bessie arrived. The sweetest little black labrador puppy. Our first dog. They weren’t joking when they (whoever they are) said that a puppy is a perfect time waster. Hours, days have evaporated! She chews away at time. It is wonderful. But it’s not getting the manuscript done.

Bessie

Bessie

And so it is October. Five days in. My husband is away (he’s been away for the last four weeks), so sole responsibility for the puppy has been even more full-on than it might have been. What was that – another excuse?

How’s the writing going? The Osteopath¬† asked me yesterday. He hasn’t asked me that in ages. The Universe is closing in.

So here I am, part confessional, part motivational. Why am I not doing the thing that helps me feel like me? Why am I neglecting the project that has absorbed hours of time and of me? Why am I not fighting for the habit? There are no answers. There is also no real point in engaging the self-critic.

Just. Need. To. Get. On. With. It.

Just write.