I was surrounded by torn scraps of paper, a mountain of reference books, random piles of notes and the lingering smell of rotting food. Evidence of absent-minded snacking and my coffee addiction were everywhere. I found dirty crockery behind my thesaurus, an unwashed spoon in an empty yogurt pot and a mouldy pear festering at the bottom of my over-flowing waste paper bin. If I’d harvested all the white fluff on its surface, I would have had enough penicillin for the Fever Ward at the local hospital.
IMHO housework and the intense concentration needed for novel writing are not natural bedfellows. While deeply immersed in my fiction, I don’t see the rubbish mushrooming like a wild organism around my work space or the thick layer of dust settling on everything that doesn’t move. And as my cleaner is scared of damaging or moving something she shouldn’t in my inner sanctum, it rarely has a thorough clean. Fortunately, a bit of muck never did anyone any harm.
Anyway, today I’ve emptied the bin and wiped everything down with damp cloth. I've got 'Fleetwood Mac's Greatest Hits’ playing in the background and a Ylang Ylang candle burning on the window sill to mask the lingering smell of rotten pear.
I also made a brand new job list and itemised all those boring admin things I need to do at this time of the year. I wonder how far down this list I will get before I abandon it and start writing another book?
But for the moment, I’m clean and efficient. I’m ready for the rest of 2016 and whatever literary challenges this sparkling New Year may bring.