Saturday, 30 May 2015

I pulled out the manuscript

yesterday and my main character gave me a stern look. It had been much too long.
I have not been working on this since Middle Cat went into hospital. She will, if all goes according to plan, be home today. That is nine weeks and four days in hospital. It was supposed to be a week plus two weeks "rehab". There is still more to go of course. It will be several months before she is prowling around in her usual manner. And yes, because she lives not too far from here, I will have to prowl backwards and forwards. It is going to take time. I still have to do other work but the writing needs to be done too.
I have written of course but I have not been able to write. Does that make sense?
I wrote blog posts. I dare not go back and read them. I assume - from the occasional comments - that people have been reading them. I have even written a couple of letters to the editor when people have stood menacingly in front of me in the supermarket and demanded that I do so. I sent off a submission of a completed manuscript. No, don't hold your breath. I know it's more than good enough but I am not sure the publishing world will think it is.
But, I have not written. For me, writing demands being able to bury yourself inside the characters. You need to know everything about them. That takes time and energy. All I have been able to do is keep putting down ideas. I have tried talking to the characters as I pedal out - fine if nobody wants to stop me and inquire after the Senior Cat or Middle Cat or nobody wants to tell me their woes or ask me to do something. Those things do rather stop conversation with characters.
In the middle of all the chaos of recent weeks and the anxiety of not knowing whether Middle Cat was going to make it I did plant some bulbs. This is something the Senior Cat would once have done. He  would have preferred to do it this time but, realistically, he cannot do it. He decided where they were going and I did it. 
In the past few days some of them have begun to climb slowly through the soil and make the slightest appearance on the surface. I can actually see, from my bedroom window, the green tips of the hyacinths the Senior Cat did plant in bowls and I know that further along there are the almost invisible beginnings of daffodils in the patch near the big rainwater tank. 
They will take time to grow. My characters will too but I know that, like the bulbs, they will surface and talk to me. 
I just need to keep them weeded. 

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