2016 hasn’t been a good year for writing. As if I hadn’t had enough interruptions to my writing schedules already this year, I am now nearly two weeks into recovery from a sprained ankle (done when I fell doing agility with the dog). Yesterday was the first day I’ve managed without a walking stick, so I’m on the mend, though it is still a bit sore and reminds me of its presence every time I forget it and overdo things a little.
You might think that all that extra time confined to a chair might provide the ideal opportunity to do more writing than normal. Wrong. My wife has been away for two weeks, first at her daughter’s who is struggling with her second pregnancy, and then visiting her mother who has gone into hospital again (this visit being somewhat open ended). I was forced to ignore medical advice. So many things needed to be done. The dog needs exercise (she’s a collie), so I was going out in the garden every few hours to throw a ball for her, in lieu of taking her for walks. The chickens need cleaning out and eggs collecting. Things had to be done in the garden – broad beans, peas, blackcurrants, gooseberries and red currants all had to be picked, or we’d lose them. Greenhouse needs watering everyday, and sometimes twice a day. And of course if I want feeding I have to do it myself.
Overall I have had more time sitting down than I would normally get. But keeping my ankle elevated has made writing difficult. It’s not a comfortable position in which to use a laptop. It has been getting easier as the ankle recovers.
Now, to compound the problems, I had a back tooth taken out today. Afterwards, I checked up on the internet about after-care. Seems there’s so much I shouldn’t be doing. On the first day I should be resting (yeah – with a lively young collie!!). So now I have discomfort at both ends of my body. Hardly conducive to concentrating. I need to get the next couple of days out the way so I know the gum is going to heal properly. It’s quite frightening to read what can go wrong and how painful it can be. Yes, I’ve spent too much time researching teeth rather than writing, just like I did with ankle research two weeks ago. Sometimes the internet can be such a distraction.
I think I need to revise my target dates. The way things are going, it’s possible that both books, the follow up to Betrayal and the short story collection, may not make it out this year after all. It’s all so disappointing to have set targets only to see them continually being moved further back by events beyond my control.