In the run up to NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) in November, I'm attempting to put together a chapter plan.

I have the basic idea. I have the characters mostly worked out although the details of the villains still evade me. Then I started on the chapter plan. Five chapters in, I lost my momentum. It's not a case of which path to take next but rather 'is there a path because I can't see one?'.

And suddenly other things seemed to call to me, drawing away my attention. There's always the inevitable pile of ironing, that book I keep starting and putting down again, the painting I promised to do for my daughter. On and on, the list is endless of reasons to 'not' work on my writing.

This morning I gave myself a strict talking to. I do that at home, when the children aren't around. If I did it in public, the men in white coats might take me away or at the very least I'd probably scare some small children. "Fiona," I said to myself. "No more excuses. Twenty minutes every day. You can manage that. Twenty minutes to commit to your writing and planning this novel. Are you with me?" I was, er, am. I will, I will, I will take twenty minutes each day to write - no excuses. The ironing can wait (even if the pile is beginning to lean) and the children can have school dinners instead of packed lunches.

Twenty minutes isn't much out of my day. I can do it! Now I'll just feed the guinea pigs first, and start on that book and...


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