The Return of the Native

I’m back. Did you miss me? The party’s over and I’m here at my desk with a head buzzing with a swarm of ideas, what-ifs and can-I-really-do-its. I had a great time in France renewing my acquaintance with the language, the food and, of course, the wine. This morning I’m putting in an offer on an eighteenth century village property which provides a self-contained rental apartment plus living quarters for me together with the most magical gardens and the whole embraced by glorious mountains. The property is somewhat shaggy round the edges but then who wouldn’t be after three hundred years? So, hopefully with a bit of goodwill, compromise and luck, the offer will be accepted and this time next year I’ll be moving to France – one more item to tick off my Bucket List.

On the writing front, editing of my Irreverent History of Holderness continues slowly and I realise how many bear pits I’ve tumbled into both in terms of content and the boring but essential grammar stuff. Just putting some distance and time between me and my manuscript has highlighted the problems and I have a screed full of to-do items in relation to checking research facts and figures. However, the biggest issue is one of structure and this is really taxing my ingenuity. At the moment the book is organised into chapters chronologically with each chapter covering a century and marking key events, people and places. However, this makes some chapters very fat and chunky and others rather emaciated. It might be better to organise by topic…I don’t know the jury’s still out. I think I will have to get some readers next to give me their views. So still a mountain of work to do yet with it but also a slight feeling of satisfaction too…or do I mean smugness? No please don’t answer that.

Oh yes and finally, whilst I’ve been away a surprising number of folk have kindly signed up to follow this blog. I’m gradually working my way through the emails to thank them. If I’ve not got to you yet I will but in the meantime thank you for your interest.

4 thoughts on “The Return of the Native

  1. Thank you ET. Yes it’s exciting but also a bit scary…the snails in the Languedoc are about 2″ across and mountaineer up the shutters and the slugs…! It all depends on whether my offer’s accepted but if not well I’ll just be forced to pay another visit to find another home 🙂 Hope your summer’s gone well and the magnificent octopus is complete (nearly). If you want to beta test it I’ll be happy to help.

  2. I find distance always throws up new avenues in my work – especially if there has been travel as it always gives me a fresh perspective on myself and life. I suppose at the moment the best thing is to focus on the fact that it might be an idea to re-arrange the chapters, to make the book more balanced. As to what will guide you, it sounds like you’ve caught a scent of something so continue tracking and keeping your mind open. At this stage I often find there is a tendency to panic – especially if the realisation is that a big change needs to happen. But it sounds like you are staying really positive about the whole thing. Good luck!

    • Thank you for the supportive comment. I think that as I’m on the threshold of throwing my whole life up in the air and waiting to see the patterns it makes when it settles again I feel far less doubt and fear about making radical changes to the book’s structure. You’re right…I am on the scent; not quite sure yet but I don’t think it a false one.

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