Isolation Part 1
Some of you may know that when I was stalled in the middle of writing A House Divided a kind person, who didn’t at that stage know me from Adam (or Eve, if you prefer) offered me the use of her empty cottage for a few weeks to kick-start me again.
It was an interesting and very productive experience. The conditions were rather spartan, note the hot-water bottle (which I set on my knee), the foot muff (helpful in stopping toes dropping off – slight exaggeration, but you get the picture, and the sheepskin rug – comfy.
The portable gas heater did a good job of keeping the room warm, but going to the toilet was a different matter. I’ve never been to Siberia, but I can now imagine how it might feel…
The upside was three-fold.
- No internet nor landline – therefore no distractions.
- The quiet suits me – only sounds were bird-song and the wind moving through the trees.
- I found that I bear a close resemblance to Pavlov’s dogs – as soon as I began to drive up the single-track road to the cottage, my brain shifted into creative mode and I was able to start writing as soon as I sat down at the makeshift desk, aka small rusty garden table.
I haven’t included a selfie (though I did take one) because it is less than flattering. Suffice to say I wrote wearing scarf, gloves (with the fingers cut out), hat and a thick woolly long jacket and the words just poured out.
End result – A House Divided – published in October 2015 – a book that I’m really proud of. Thank you Anna!