… on the way to the supermarket. I rediscovered my Get Up and Go. Or, more accurately, my Get Up and Write.
Walking has often served me as a pipe-opener, literally and figuratively, and I go out for a walk most days, exploring my new neighbourhood, piecing together the jigsaw of London. But it was on an urgent walk to the supermarket (washing powder and Marmite-coated cashews) that I was suddenly able to answer a question that’s been plaguing me: what, if anything, to write next.
I had just spent a week looking at yellowing notes for a novel my former publishers didn’t want, trying to assemble them into a coherent plot and failing. Maybe the publishers were right after all. It has been known. Then, leaning into the wind between Goswell Road and Golden Lane, came a moment of clarity. What I want to do is write Dr Dan 5 and then retire. A lo, the clouds opened.
I’ll begin the outlining and research next week. Start writing by March. Publish before the end of the year. By which time I’ll be 75 (how the heck did that happen?) and, I think, ready to confine myself to a bit of journalism and the occasional blog post. It’s a plan. I do love a plan.