99% Perspiration: why I’ve not blogged for a while!


Too many of my blog posts start with an apology. This one is no different. If you’ve followed me in the hope of any writing insights, or even pony pictures, you’ve been sadly disappointed for the last few months – for which I am sorry. If you’re reading this, thank you for sticking around so long!

So where have I been? Well, for much of the summer I was spending time with the horses and avoiding spending time writing. In May, my stepdaughter and I signed up for the British Horse Society’s 2021 Rideathon and chalked up a few miles exploring our local bridleways and byways, and raised some money for the BHS’ work on access (aiming to get horses and riders off our busy roads and onto safer alternatives). If you want to see some footage of our rides, I made some five minute films (I have a camera mounted on a chest harness) which are available on YouTube – try these quick links: byway, bridleway, 2nd byway

Of course, as the weeks stretched into months, and I still hadn’t made any progress on those pony stories, I began to feel that nagging anxiety of the looming deadline. And when I say looming deadline, obviously I’m not referring to the first one I’d set myself – which was Easter – since that had loomed and then simply passed by. (Ahem.) No, I’m referring to that monster-deadline which is Christmas (sorry, I said the C-word) – the time of year when quite a lot of people buy books and it’s really sensible to have your book out there for sale! Oh yes, that deadline.

Hmm… So, September came and went – book not finished. October came and went….and…er….book still not finished. Eeek!

I had made some progress. I’d managed to complete story number 4 of 5, which was the one which I’d thought needed the most work. Story number 5 was pretty much there…or so I assumed. Turns out, not so much. Story number 5 took an age to finish. (Mostly because I had a beginning and an end, but it was the middle which was a mess.)

But, since I’d waited all summer for inspiration, with very little in the way of results, I now had to put in some perspiration. And as we all know, this is a way more effective approach! The stories are now finished (well, as much as stories ever are – I mean, there’s the constant desire to tweak, much like the desire to pick at a dry scab…). Most excitingly, my cover designer has produced a fantastic draft design which I absolutely love – so I’ll be revealing the final version very soon.

I still have a tonne of work to do to get the book out there, but I can’t tell you how excited I will be to see it finally in print. Pony stories are where I started on my writing journey 30 years ago, and what’s that saying – a man travels the world over in search of what he needs and returns home to find it? Well, yes, it’s a little like that.

Hope this has in some way atoned for my long absence – and (as is so often the case) you may see a little more from me during the winter months. Oh, and here are some pony pictures too! 😉

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