Saturday 17th February 2018

There’s something about an early start.  I’m usually too exhausted to get up really early, or instead find myself pottering around until it’s late in the day, but after returning from a friend’s house relatively early last night I got a decent night’s sleep and was walking to the supermarket to pick up some turkey mince before it was 9am.
I then came back and worked on the short story I’m due to hand in.  I’d written a lot of it, but unusually for me, there were spots where I’d left gaps.  So aside from writing the final act, I can to go back to spots in the previous two acts and add detail.
I wasn’t aiming to get the draft finished, but that’s what happened.  It’s come in a lot shorter than I was expecting, the first draft ending up around 2500 words.  I think some of that is because one of the conceits of the story is that there is no dialogue.  It’s amazing how many words things drop when you cut that out.
Doing this does mean that the prose needs to really sing, and with this draft the story is a long way off from that.  But… a draft is a draft and I can now work on it to improve it and round off the flat edges.
Next draft I really want to polish the prose.  I think I can do some clever things here – some of which I’ve already done in this first draft – which makes for tighter storytelling.  Not that I really need the short story to be any shorter.  But I’m sure there are pieces I can embellish that will round out the story and also increase the word count.
With that done, I went to my friend’s house for a chill afternoon and evening of watching TV.  Normally it would be enough to bore me silly, but my friend didn’t have a lot of spoons and we had loads to talk about so the conversation never got dry.
And the day wasn’t without its drama.  We were sat on the sofa when there was a strange sensation.  To me it felt like next door had smashed a hammer into the wall and caused the sofa to move.  Except there was no sound from next door.  My friend thought the dog had shifted weight and felt it too.
It seemed like an earthquake.
So I jumped straight on Twitter, because that’s the best place for breaking stories, to see that people from Liverpool to South Wales had felt it.  Given that I’ve been just a few miles from the epicentre of an earthquake whilst in Oklahoma and never felt anything, I was actually quite proud of experiencing my first earthquake.
Who knew it would be whilst sat on a sofa in Swindon?
I’m going to go swordfighting tomorrow for the first time in weeks.  The plan is to see how the finger performs.  And then from there I decide if I’m going to do the competitions I have lined up over the next couple of weeks.
If you want to follow more of my journey, then be sure to check me on my social channels.  Likewise, if you’d like me to expand on any point mentioned above, please say so in the comments.

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