One of the things I have found difficulty in assimilating into my new career/hobby is the necessity of reading as much of other people’s work as possible. It of course takes up a lot of the time I feel I should be writing, but the general advice is to read, read, read and then write as the mood dictates. Blogging is a bit different as it has its own rhythm (in my case once per day) and there is a serious discipline attached to it which should stand me in good stead if I were ever to get a book deal.

So, from time to time, Mary throws me a book she has just consumed in what appears to be a matter of minutes and tells me I’ll enjoy reading it. Quite often I don’t even pick it up, feeling I already have plenty things to occupy my time, but now and again, I give it a try. Most of the time, I find the story highly enjoyable, probably because I am hopeless at working out “whodunit” and am therefore genuinely surprised when I discover who the perp was!

Unlike Mary I cannot get through a book of 600 pages in a day. Nor can I in 2 days. No, it takes me several days to reach the dénouement of your average murder mystery, as I tend to max out at about 2 hours of constant reading. My eyes aren’t the problem. It’s my bum! I find that my lower cheeks gradually lose their sense of feeling until I’m no longer aware of what exactly I’m sitting on! That’s what happened yesterday. I’m just about to find out why the hired private investigator was bumped off when I notice I have a paralysed posterior! I pull myself to my feet, do several circuits of the awning whilst simultaneously massaging the malignant muscle and that’s enough for me to lose the thread of the book.

Maybe it’s just me but I also have a habit of reading a chapter and discovering that I’ve already read it! Why I don’t recognize the storyline or the dialogue for several pages is a puzzle to me but I’m continually saying to myself “Wait a minute! She’s already said that!” and then realising I stopped at the end of the chapter I’m reading the night before. A bookmark would of course solve this problem at a stroke but I stubbornly resist on the grounds that I can’t be that stupid and forgetful. Can I?

Mary has invited me to try my hand at writing a murder mystery. I have so far refused. Indeed I have even turned it around and invited her to write one instead! After all, everyone knows that Lady Burton could read for Scotland so she is bound to be an absolute expert on folk disappearing, alibis proffered, spurious family links and blunt objects. With at least 500 plots under her belt you would think she’d have worked out the perfect crime story by now, given that she tends to emit a strange, triumphant snigger about a third of the way through any book when she knows how it will end. An amazing talent! Sometimes, even at the end of the final page of a mystery, I’m still not quite sure what happened!

I’m going to finish this latest book tomorrow then concentrate on writing the last chapter of Socrates which I’ve promised myself I’ll have complete before we get back from the adventure. With weather like we have this week I won’t need to sit inside the Magic Caravan until cabin fever sets in. I’ll be able to sit out in the sunshine or under the open awning and wait for the words to come, which, fingers crossed, they will. The story is finished in my head: I just need the right words to please whosoever will read it.

When it’s done I’m considering putting it on Amazon Kindle, maybe for free. Any comments?

Sorry, I stopped there but the word count showed 666 which I took as an Omen! There, that’s better!

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