I’ll have to go on holiday more often.

I didn’t think I’d get so much done, but whilst relaxing by the pool, I’ve taken the opportunity to keep up with the writing. Sometimes I get distracted and start to stare out into the distance (nothing to do with so many bikini clad women, I assure you!), and then I realise I’ve just been thinking through the story rather than just typing the damn thing.

So here’s the update. Total – 23,202 words

  • Prologue – first draft done, 1031 words
  • Chapter 1 – first draft done, 2108 words
  • Chapter 2 – first draft done, 3023 words
  • Chapter 3 – first draft done, 4019 words
  • Chapter 4 – first draft done, 4044 words
  • Chapter 5 – first draft done, 3041 words
  • Chapter 6 – first draft done, 2837 words
  • Chapter 7 – first draft done, 3004 words
  • Chapter 8 – in progress, 95 words

I’ve done a little re-working of some of the earlier chapters. Going back, I can see some of the phrases that I keep repeating, and some of the themes not quite develop as I had thought. A little editing here and there, but I still consider it the first draft.

When I get back from hols, I think I’ll be in a place to print it out on actual paper and give it a read through. If anyone wants to volunteer to give some feedback, just get in touch in the comments below, or email me, or something (most of you know my contact details, eh?)

Incidentally, lots of tattoos out here in Tenerife. Seems like everyone loves a bit of body art. Fortunately I now fit right in 😉 I’m totally enjoying my own little piece of art on my body (sorry Mum, I know you told me not to, but hey ho …). A great guy, Les Makepeace from Tattoo Workshop in Brighton did this for me. It’s healing nicely, and I’m using plenty of baby sun screen in this bright sunshine to protect it.

I’ve had a few people ask about it. Why the semi-colon? No, it’s not because the semi-colon is such a common statement separator in computer programming languages (I’m a Python coder by choice, and you’d never find me using a semi-colon, other than import ipdb; ipdb.set_trace() temporarily!) As part of a celebration and reminder of my struggles with mental illness, specifically depression. There’s a saying that “the semicolon is used when an author could’ve chosen to end their sentence, but chose not to. The author is you and the sentence is your life.”

So, I’m using my tattoo as a symbol of strength, a symbol to continue; I’ve only paused, it’s not over yet.

And since getting the tattoo I feel really strong inside. I feel like I could climb the highest mountain, fight the grizzliest of bears, swim the oceans … ok, maybe not the swimming, but in all other aspects of life I feel unstoppable.

Funny how a little bit of ink can change a person’s whole perspective, eh?

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