Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Looking forward to a long break from work!

Someone commented via Twitter last night about the flowers etc. on my blog here - it was only then I realised I hadn't posted anything at all since September!  Not only that, but apart from a brief week or so when I knocked out a few chapters on my new novel, I haven't written much either.

The main reason has been dealing with the deterioration in health in an elderly relative - hospitalization, subsequent admission into a residential home - and all the other things which such an upheaval for that person involves.  It certainly is a sure way of completely killing off any creative thoughts - instead my head has been filled with routine stuff which has to be sorted - selling a flat, sifting through someone else's belongings, which has been very sad.

It certainly made me think, how much 'stuff' we all hold on to, when really, we don't need very much at all to enjoy life.  Once the sorting out has been done on the elderly relative's behalf, I need to have a serious declutter here.  Things like the hundreds of books we've accumulated over the years ... I've got a Kindle now, so surely I don't need half of them.  I was amazed to find out that even charity shops aren't as keen to take hardback books any more and was advised that the demand for lesser known or less popular works have declined.

The elderly relative has held on to some very interesting papers which were passed to her by her aunt who died twenty years ago.  These hadn't been moved from an old metal crate thing since she'd inherited them and I was delighted to find original 'letters from the trenches' written by a serving World War 1 soldier who was apparently captured and kept as a prisoner of war.  The letters are all neatly folded, in date order, and kept in a box with various Forces communications confirming he had been captured, periodic notifications that he was still alive, and in the box are his original medals too.  I feel that these would be of interest to someone and I think I'd like to scan them and reproduce in a book - plus want to research exactly where he was and at what stage of the war etc. 

As the post title confirms, I'm really eager to finish work for Christmas and enjoy a couple of weeks doing as little as possible, apart from perhaps starting the 'trenches' work.  Oh. and decluttering :)

The picture above was taken last winter - Waxwings - around twenty just appeared and cleared the cotoneaster berries.  We haven't had any yet this year, just a few redwings and a fat song thrush.  The brief cold spell brought loads of birds to the garden - wrens, blue tits, great tits, various finches - and a male and female blackcap (I love them!) - but we are back to heavy rain and slightly milder temperatures, which seems to stifle bird activity.

If you are still reading, and interested ... I'm using my last free day with Amazon's KDP programme on Thursday 20th December - my novel The Splintered Circle is historical fiction, set in the UK and Channel Islands, with some mystery in there too.  Includes various locations in the UK and a look back in time to when the Channel Islands were occupied by German troops during the Second World War.