Well, today I was reminded why policemen are sometimes called plods – for Sam and I trudged unimaginatively around Piccadilly together for five hours, and I doubt I’ll end up with more than one usable paragraph out of the whole excursion. As any writer of anything – articles, books, poems, letters, reports, anything – knows, there are some days when it flows and some days when it does not. On the not days, the great temptation is to give in to the lack of muse. After all, says the little devil on my shoulder, it’s Sunday – the day of rest. No-one’s making you write this stuff – it’s not as though anyone’s actually given you a contract for this old tat, is it? And isn’t writing meant to be fun, not hard work? All of this is true, but I worry that if I give in too often, the giving in will become the norm.
And of course there is the great truism that you can always edit what you’ve written, but you can’t edit what you haven’t written. Even if Sam and I abandon nearly everything we’ve achieved today (and I’ll confess it’s a bit shy of my target 2,000 words, at only 1,655), at least there might be perhaps three or four sentences that will make the grade – and that’s three or four more than I would have had if I hadn’t at least plodded through the day.
On a brighter note, I met someone yesterday – a friend of a friend – who read “Canary” and liked it so much that she has just bought “Fatal Forgery” too! She was put onto them by our mutual friend, and it was such a thrill to meet a reader who didn’t buy out of loyalty to me – and then genuinely enjoyed the book. Worth every plod, that is.