Why writing a novel is like making focaccia.
+ way more than you ever wanted to know about two days in my life
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This week has been my best writing week for literal years. I’ve written a lot and I’ve enjoyed it. As always, I’ve put pressure on myself, thinking it needs to be as good as it can possibly be so I can send it to my agent who can get me a six figure deal and solve all my problems1, but then I’ve hit myself with a cushion and just tried to get the words on the page.
I also missed doing the daily diary, so I started it at the beginning of the week, planning to make a note of everything, I think to prove to myself that I do actually work a lot, even though I tell myself I spend half my time watching Taskmaster and the other half thinking about Greg Davies on Taskmaster (see also: watching Starstruck; thinking about Rose Matafeo), but it turns out I do bloody loads and I got fed up of writing it all down after two days.
Woke at 4.30-ish. Tried to get back to sleep - including sound bath meditation - gave up at 5.30-ish. Wordle. Read some of a book about Venice for research (it made me think no one should go there, but also I really want to go there). Coffee. Walked a mile along the prom to Morrisons because it was a lovely morning (and I was listening to this). Intended to walk back too, but bought too much so got the bus. Breakfast. Wrote and sent my money newsletter (crammed with cats for one week only). Rewarded myself with Taskmaster. Wrote 500 words while waiting for a phone call from an editor (that never came). Reward episode of Starstruck while getting set up for a transcription job. Did the transcription. Meant to write “It got to the point where I dreaded his calls” but actually wrote “It got to the point where I dreaded his balls.” Made carbonara while trying to put all Harry Styles songs in order of preference (top: As It Was; bottom: Carolina). Watched The Owl House with Joe. Bed before midnight.
Awake at 5.30. Wordle. Got the new Nina Stibbe, which I’ve been dying to read, from Netgalley. Feels like a reward for yesterday’s hard transcribing work. Coffee. Finally finished the transcription - almost 11k words. No wonder my hands are vibrating. Breakfast, started reading The Rachel Incident. Started making focaccia while listening to a podcast from a woman I’m interviewing for The Ladybird Purse. Drafted the Tuesday edition of this newsletter. Focaccia! She has risen! A bit. I think. Knead it while listening to another podcast. Lunch and Taskmaster. Sent my newsletter. Emailed an expert re ADHD and money2 and then Laura Wood for Thursday’s post (another of those six figure deals…). Back to the (apparently quite demanding) focaccia, which did not look like it should. Another coffee. Wrote 500 words. Focaccia definitely not right - too sticky to make holes - but I shove it in the oven anyway. Starstruck. Focaccia looks and tastes like actual bread. Delighted with myself. Made veggie chilli and watched Only Murders with Joe. Bed but no idea what time.
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This is the last extract from Happy Endings for now, because I really need to finish it, send it to my agent and then get on with the Harry book.
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