Some days you just shouldn’t look at the news. I mean, you shouldn’t even peek at it out of the corner of your eye in a squinty way. Some days the news just seems to be one malicious belly laugh of a story after another.
Take today, for example:
- More financial turmoil as a US hedge fund (no, I don’t understand them, either… nor do many of their investors, methinks!) fraud kicks some of the world’s biggest banks well and truly in the goolies.
- A woman in Belfast has rabies. You know, the one they used to run all the adverts about back in the 70s… (They always scared me witless, when I was a kid. I was convinced that if a dog so much as farted in my general vicinity I’d catch it).
- The winter vomiting virus (I didn’t know viruses could vomit) is threatening to spread rapidly across England “unless people are sensible and stay at home”. At Christmas. With all that shopping to do. And the partying. Fat chance.
- And if that wasn’t bad enough, three Scout leaders from Cornwall had their canoe sunk by a hippopotamus in West Africa! Rogue hippopotami! What is the world coming to? (So much for Scout leaders being prepared!… sorry.)
Makes you wish you’d stayed in bed, doesn’t it?
But, of course, it isn’t all bad news. No, really, it isn’t. Oh, all right, then, have it your way. It is all bad — but some news is less bad. For example, tomorrow should see me hitting 20,000 words with Tomorrow Will Come and Will Be Just Like Today. Granted, that means that I still have somewhere in the region of 140,000 words to go — but only a couple of weeks ago I still had 150,000 words ahead of me. See?
Joking aside, all being well I’ll hit my aforementioned pre-Christmas target of 20,000 words tomorrow. I’ll then be focusing on tidying up what I’ve written so far, sorting my notes ready for the new year and generally concentrating on trying to switch off from it for a while. I’m looking forward to the break, even whilst I’m not looking forward to the break! Novels such as Tomorrow Will Come… can tend to be rather demanding. They want to be written. They want to dictate the workrate. It can be hard to resist. But sometimes it’s very important that you do.
If I return to work before the first of January 2009 you have my permission to call me nasty names and stuff.