Brilliant interview with Emma Thompson on P L Travers (mentions the Yeats story!) and also; feminism, celebrity cults, the Internet etc. Even if the film turns out to be awful, I’m so glad that Emma is playing her and seems to really respect PLT who is one of my absolute heroes.

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I have so much respect for authors of historical fiction right now. Seriously, second guessing every detail as you write it is rough. How did they do this before the Internet?

"What did an off duty Roman foot soldier wear?" *sigh* "Another trip to the library I suppose."

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My version of online shopping - browsing the library catalogue and reserving half a dozen books.

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No one beats British Archaeologists for names:

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Oh dear, oh dear, I need to stop having new story ideas in the middle of drafts.

Also, tragedy of the day; I think I may in fact be a pantser*. Stars help me.

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This is what writing long fiction means; you get to a point, somewhere after 10 or 20 thousand words, where you see not only emptiness ahead but emptiness behind and you cease to believe in the story you are telling yourself, and it’s like waking up one morning and realising Father Christmas is just a paper cut-out hanging in the shop windows, and your book is equally one dimensional. All books are little gods, demanding sacrifice and devotion but there comes a point, a crisis of faith if you like, where you question the truthfulness of a story, and whether it is a soulless thing, and it’s not about ideas (which are golden glittering relics) but about your ability to encase them in lead ink, and whether the temple you have built will stand for centuries or whether it is sinking, slowly sinking because you set the foundations in mud. Worst of all, this is not the first such disillusionment, but the third attempt that has died at your hands. You consider conversion, surely there is a kinder, easier story out there, one that will seep from your finger tips, but you know that there are eight half-drafts skulking in your writing desk drawer and you begin to fear, afraid that the fault lies not in the heavens but in your ability to cross the abyss. For the words must follow you out from Hades, don’t turn around, don’t look behind. Just keep going.

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Went to the Christmas markets last night. A fake beach and a walk in snow globe, side by side, which pretty much sums up our split personality of a holiday.

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slipping into old selves like winter coats pulled from storage, slightly smaller than remembered and smelling of mothballs, but comforting in their familiarity.

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How softly they fall, how quietly. Hearts too sheer for forevers. Young only in passing. Neverlastings drowned in hours, folded away and forgotten. Your footsteps still echoing down silver corridors, my sisters, my darlings. Daisies tucked behind your ears. Flowers wilt, summers fade. They all wanted to be her, they never knew who she was. First names only. Kisses like a row of churchyard crosses. No grand denouement, just hang up the slippers and flit away into the shadows, a trail of tobacco smoke, dry ice, dry eyes. Only dust remains.

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