Thursday, 29 January 2015

The netherworld doldrums of January

I have vague memories of the animated 1970's film 'The Phantom Toolbooth', a linguistic road trip based on Norton Justers book, with similarities to Alice in Wonderland. I tried, but never made it through the book, reading it to my children years later. But I have a strong memory of one part of the film - The Doldrums, a quagmire of a place in the dark wood where thinking and laughing are not allowed.

That's January, post winter festivals, it sneaks in with dark mornings and hibernation temptations. My bed has become a magnet, I find it hard to leave it in the morning and it calls to me through the day. It's not a bad place for writing, but then I fall asleep and the words are lost.

My words are out there somewhere in January land, in the doldrums. My novel, Girl In The Box, emailed to agents with bright, perky, hope filled covering letters. Short stories sent to magazines and entered to competitions. Now silence, the waiting, the tumbleweed rolls across a writing career. The metronome of work beats on, inbetween I plan the next batch of stories, work on a new novel, plan entries to Mslexia and other competitions, find myself on page 23 of their latest issue in the synopsis surgery. A sign that something good may be about to happen? And wait..

What next? What can you do in January? Keep busy, keep writing, keep working, keep reading,keep swimming. Get up in the morning and don't let the doldrums get you!

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