I just broke through the fifty thousand word barrier on my new book Kurinji Flowers. Being here in Devon in the pouring rain is a great incentive to getting the words down. And even in the Devonian deluge, a good tramp down the country lanes always helps get the creative juices flowing when you get stuck. As I can barely see the hills from my window, so veiled are they in rain and mist, I picked some wild flowers to add the vase already thoughtfully placed by my lovely hostess on my desk, and indulged in a bit of quick daubing with my paintbox as a temporary distraction from the words. The wild flowers around here are beautiful.
Getting away to the writing retreat is an invaluable aid to my concentration. No shopping, no cooking, no telephone. Even my Kindle is lying on the bedside table untouched. When not writing, there’s always great conversation with very interesting people over plentiful quantities of wine – and a pub right opposite to repair to for those who fancy a pint of Guinness!
As part of my research into the period I’m writing about, I’ve been finding out more about wartime India and Chandra Bose and the Indian independence movement. I came upon some hideous stuff about some poor Indians from the British Indian army blindfolded and used for gun target parctice when captured by the Japanese, who finished off any survivors with bayonets. Grim. This won’t be featuring in the book I hasten to add!