I can’t believe that it’s 11 days since I last put a post on this blog! There have been a number of reasons which, on reflection, are really just excuses, so I won’t bother you with them. I’m presently in the Lake District. I have been here since Friday celebrating my wife’s birthday and I am staying up for the rest of the week as I have organised a residential conference for a group of primary Headteachers which starts tomorrow. We have some great speakers lined up who, I am hoping, are going to give me plenty of material for more blog posts this coming week.
I’ve got 24 hours to myself before the conference begins so I have decided to do some writing. As I sit in the hotel lounge with a stunning view over Lake Windermere I’m tempted to think that all I need to do is enjoy the calm and quietness, soak in the natural beauty in front of me and just let the words flow from my pen on to the paper (or even from my keyboard on to my iPad screen!) But we all know that it’s not that easy – no disruptions and an idyllic setting are great in themselves but no cast iron recipe for great writing. I’ve been sat here for an hour and can’t think of a thing to write, hence I am writing a post on my blog about not thinking about what to write – does that make any sense at all?
As a writer I try to make sure that I have always got one of my journals and a pen with me at all times. However that doesn’t always work. There have been a number of times when I’ve had a great thought while driving and by the time I have reached my destination and have time to write it down the idea has gone. Then I have some great ideas relaxing in the bath, again no pen and paper to hand. By the time I have had a good relaxing soak and a bit of a sleep, (the sort you have in the bath and then wake up because the water has gone cold,) I find that yet again the great idea has vanished. As for the pencil and pad by the side of the bed, I gave that up a long time ago. It’s not that the ideas don’t come in the middle of the night, they often do. But I find that by the time I have found my glasses, scrabbled around in the dark for the pencil and paper, turned a light on to see what I’m doing I have invariably woken a far from happy better half and realise that the safest thing to do is to apologise, turn off the light and hope that I can remember the great idea in the morning – I rarely do.
So back to my present situation. I’m looking out across Lake Windermere. The water is very calm and the odd boat or steamer that goes past is creating some wonderful ripples and patterns on the water. The sky is overcast and there is a mist settling on the lake which makes the two small islands in the middle of the lake look quite mysterious. There must surely be a story out there somewhere.