I have a new website where you will find ideas for writing, writing tools and inspirations to help if you’re struggling to write, book reviews, samples of my writing, information about me, weblinks, photos, and much more. Check it out here http://rajklal.com
A million and one things get in the way of writing. Lack of structure is one. Life events also get in the way. But that’s what a writer’s life is: life happens and we have to learn how to write despite the obstacles.
Maybe you only manage one line, one paragraph, one page, one thousand words. Whatever you manage, get it done. From one, this will become two, three and more.
It’s the last Sunday before Christmas, and the last time I left the house was on Friday. For a while everyone’s been talking about the snow and the expected Arctic conditions. So while I was out, I decided to be sensible and stock up a bit. So, I’ve got a bit of food to keep me going for a while, and bought some meat to freeze in case there’s no let up in the big freeze outside.
I’ve got most of my presents still to buy. Not because I haven’t been organised but because I just can’t face it. It’s the first Christmas since I lost my Dad, and nothing feels right. If anyone does get anything it’s likely to be a box of chocs, and it’ll be a case of like it or lump it.
While people have been shown on the news going mad trying to shop on Oxford Stree, I’ve been sitting under a quilt with the kids, watching Christmas movies. The only time I ventured outside yesterday was to go and put some bird food out. It’s been a while since I topped up the nuts and sunflower seeds, and felt too guilty to be put it off. Wrapping up in all sorts of warm winter layers, I ventured out. First thing: shake the snow off the mock orange tree where the birdfood containers are usually hung. The last thing I needed was an avalanche!
My reward today: birds in the garden, feeding. Mostly Blue Tits and Robins, approaching one at a time and sharing time at the feeder. Nature working in harmony. A pleasure to see.
Now watching Master Chef India final and thinking John Torode and Gregg Wallace are pussy cats compared to these judges.
It’s been snowing now for several days, pretty much non-stop, and frosty for longer. I’ve been without a car for almost a week now and it’s frustrating to say the least. However, the plus side has been that I don’t have to park the car and walk up a steep slope to the railway station! This is not me being lazy but practical. The prospect of slipping and sliding on that ramp was a big worry, especially as I’ve had a knee op on both knees already. Neither was an experience I’d like to repeat.
From an aesthetic point of view, the snow does look very beautiful. It’s just not good to do anything normal in, like getting to and from work or school, or try to take deliveries when my drive is steep and slippery despite clearing it and spreading salt and grit. If you’re thinking of getting a patterned concrete drive - or anything else concrete - my recommendation is: DON’T! They are a nightmare, and they’re slippery so never believe anyone who tells you they aren’t. People will say anything to secure a sale. It doesn’t mean it’s true. If I could, I’d rip it out and replace it with a tarmac drive like we had before. Aaarrgghhhh!!!
Going to uni in the snow has been interesting - cold, but not impossible. Even with thermal socks on, my feet are never warm enough! Why? Not even with two pairs of socks do my feet stay warm. Maybe my toes will defrost when the weather gets warmer. Maybe.
Now to wrap up warm and brave it to uni in the snow, with yet more snow falling. Adieu for now!
I haven’t been too lazy to post! Since Easter, so much has happened. It reads like a nightmare and sapped all of my writing energy and creativity.
My Dad went into hospital at the end of March, two weeks before the end of the final year of my undergrad course at uni. He died in hospital at the beginning of May. With the turmoil that brought, I had no time or energy to complete my final assignments, but with a month left before the hand-in date and more importantly, not wanting to let Dad down, I made myself sit down and complete my work.
Part of not wanting to let Dad down was that I’d got a place at Warwick Uni on their MA in Writing course. He was so proud of me, I couldn’t jeopardise my place.
Lucky for me, it all worked out as far as uni work goes and I graduated in September 2010, with the legendary Gurdas Maan. I’d felt it was a gift from my Dad, a day to treasure forever rather than be the day I dreaded most because Dad wouldn’t be there, and because I’d promised to wear the sari that he bought me which we never imagined would be his last gift to me.
Now, I’m at Warwick Uni, and enjoying my course, getting more involved and looking forward to helping put work together for an Anthology of students’ work.
Follow my time at uni on:
Blogging my way through the MA in Writing at Warwick University.