A Year of Writing: Days 261-270

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Day 261 of #ayearofwriting and the great thing about moving into another draft is the shaping of it, like clay beneath your fingers as you pull out imagery that sits there. The story starts to take shape more and small vignettes, small moments become something larger than life.

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Day 262 of #ayearofwriting and I am often interested in the alien in cultures. How one culture can hijack another through the most simplest of things, food. This can be seen in Japan and their obsession with all things American when it comes to the dining experience. It seems odd that a country that destroyed another country should become almost like a God, a shrine of worship, for diners are this, little shrines by the sides of roads that we count down to as we drive.

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Day 263 of #ayearofwriting and I am exhausted. A week of house restoration, searching for old doors, marking, marking and more marking. Between it all is the desire and the need to crowbar in writing. Burning the candle at both ends but it would be better in a pub.

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Day 264 of #ayearofwriting and I am in the diner in my story and the moment my narrator is fired by his carer. I remember my times being fired or walking out of a job. One of my first jobs was at a bingo hall. It was run by a woman called Pauline, she reminded me of someone who failed to be in the mafia, she oversaw the hall with a mix of tyranny and bitter sarcasm. She once offered me more hours under the principal that I belonged with her in the bingo hall because I wasn’t good enough to go anywhere else. I quit that night, it was my first realisation that a job does not define my humanity or my freedom.

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Day 265 of #ayearofwriting and a year ago I committed to 100 days of writing, thanks to the wonderful writer Jenn Ashworthhttps://www.facebook.com/jennashworth/ and Carys Bray who were doing the 100 days exercise. I liked the structure, the demands, the relentless chipping away and I decided on my birthday, which was for me Day 100 to commit to 365 days of writing. Technically, I am there now but I won’t be quitting this part of the exercise until the first day of 2019. So, let’s celebrate every writer that chips away at the words, takes rejection in their stride and shares their practice and craft. Thanks guys, you got me writing again.

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Day 266 of #ayearofwriting is that when you commit to writing, you commit to reading. For one cannot exist without the other. You seek out writers you may never have read, leapfrog from one book to another, and say to yourself, ‘I need to know how square dancing became famous in Japan’ then go out and buy a book on it. Today, I found this in a secondhand bookshop, unread, the spine not even creased, it is now. If you want to write, read.

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Day 267 of #ayearofwriting and this is face that says, ‘I have had no sleep, I am ill. I hate the bug season’. Between the toilet and prays for Armitage Shanks, I try to write, dear reader, I try.

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Day 268 of #ayearofwriting and as we move furniture, books and things that go tinkle when they shouldn’t, ready for the plasterer next week. I find my notebook is somewhere in the myriad of mess, an alliteration of arse, anger and annoyance. I decide to have a bath to calm down as Carol cooks apple pies and crumbles from our orchard fruit. I think of Dad. I think of wagging school as my son plays tenor horn, the sound of it reminiscent of my Mum’s disappointment in me and how in my memory we seem to be sat on the hill leading to the old pipe works, long gone. I sit in the bath and in my head I write, write the locale and wonder of the horror that occurred there. This is the aftershock of the bug. Then I throw up again.
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Day 269 of #ayearofwriting and this folks is my post throwing up face. I am writing on my phone but the writing is often interrupted.
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Day 270 of #ayearofwriting the sun may be shining but indoors everything is upside down. Still feeling rough, taking to my notebook doing to do lists for the story I am writing and future stories. Got a lovely rejection from a magazine saying the story once quite right and they wanted to see more of my writing. A nice positive to a terrible, exhausting week.

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