I’ve never been the type of writer who sets aside time every day, as I have a full-time job and other literary-related commitments.
However, the last seven days have been particularly productive for my poetry. I’ve written pieces inspired by such diverse sources as a convoluted train announcement and a Sorry You’re Leaving card.
The difference seems to be that I spent last week in Hove. This is on the south coast of England, more than eight hours away from Dundee by train. But once you’re there, it’s a pleasant walk into Brighton along the seafront, with plenty of tourist attractions along the way.
I must make it clear that this was a business trip, not a holiday. Yet after my shift finished at around 5:30pm, I had time spare with no washing to hang up or dishes to clear.
Unusually, I was put up in a hostel rather than a chain hotel because of where the office was located. I had a reasonably good experience there, but the bad reviews on TripAdvisor will probably inspire more poetry.
Despite the productivity I experienced, I’m still not of a mindset where I’d travel somewhere just for a holiday. I like to be somewhere for a purpose, else it feels like a waste of time.
A couple of years ago, I was asked to present workshops about National Novel Writing Month at a writing retreat called Chasing Time, run by three friends. They’re based in a large house in rural Angus.
Unfortunately, this particular workshop didn’t have enough subscribers to go ahead, but it would have suited me nicely to devote time to the other writers during the day, then work on my own project in the evenings. I’m pleased to report that their other workshops have all been successful.