Ow, stop that!

I was struck by something yesterday -- not She Who Must Be Reported For Husband-Related Cruelty for a change -- the urge to write. Words. Real pretend, made-up words of fiction and stuff. Of course I resisted, fought back. Shouted, "Bugger off, naughty words!" But they persisted. In the end I only managed to avoid them by hiding in the cupboard under the stairs with all the homemade pickles, preserves, rhubarb vodka, and monkeys. I was able to use their simian grey matter as a shield (well, I was caught unawares, otherwise I'd've had my tinfoil hat on. Very good for blocking random thoughts, rogue words, and alien signals is a tinfoil hat. Plus it reflects back the heat of your brain and keeps your hair warm. Tinfoil hat - not just for loonies!)

I did give in for just a moment and wrote the opening phrase up on the whiteboard, before making a run for it, so it almost looks like I've actually done something. But I haven't.

But I do know that Book Number The Fourth (has a working title, but I don't like it, so I'm not telling anyone in case it sticks) is going to be very different from CG, DL and BS. Not least in some of the structure and formatting, which is going to bug the living hell out of my editors. I'm a bad, bad, naughty write-ist.

All I have to do now is sit down and write the bloody thing.

Only that's not going to happen before Christmas, is it? Nope. I'm at home today, sorting out a tree and glue-related mishap. Tomorrow is the INoGITCH project management lunch (for which one is expected to take a half day from one's holiday allowance and pay for the thing oneself) followed by She Who Must Fret Endlessly Over 'Not Having Anything To Wear' As Is Traditional At Every Possible Occasion's big work's bash at a fancy hotel with good food, lashings of champagne (all on the company, because they're very good that way), and much talking of toot into the wee-small hours.

So no writing there either.

Saturday will be spent getting last minute things ready for Christmas. Sunday is Christmas Eve and features an family dinner, and Monday is food and drink central for two (plus one cat) at Casa MacBride.

I could write on Boxing Day, but you know what? I need a sodding holiday. But I may write anyway. Or not. I shall see how the mood takes me. Screw conventional wisdom: 'to be a writer you must write every day', you know what: sometimes life gets in the way.

Besides, I nearly jacked in the whole Making Shite Up For A Living thing on Tuesday. Was all set to rescind my resignation, hand my advance back to HarperCollins, and go back to being a wage slave for the rest of my days. And compared with that, taking a couple of days off at the end of the year seems not too big a deal after all.

So God bless us, one and all. Except for Rickards*, who's beyond help in that department.

* Ever since writing about him as a PC in BROKEN SKIN, I've got into the habit of referring to John by his last name. I know I drone on and on about this when I do events, but it always strikes me as odd how most writers (like Mr Billingham, and Mr Rankin for example) when they're talking about their own books tend to refer to their protagonists by their last name, rather than their first. As if they weren't really on friendly terms. Logan has always been Logan to me. Not McRae. But John is now Rickards. Or 'Spanky'. Strange, but true.